Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Arriving in Indianapolis
For most of the deputation, today was arrival day. One by one or two by two we've been finding our way from the airport to the hotel. A complication that I experienced was discovering that there are two Marriott hotels in downtown Indianapolis. I went to the wrong one. Fortunately, it was only a block or so away from where I belonged. Unfortunately, Indianapolis is in the midst of a heat wave--walking a block and a half at 98 degrees while dragging luggage is somehow farther than it looks on a map! Getting oriented and dealing with registration was first on the agenda after checking into the hotel. Each of us receives a loose leaf binder, three inches thick, which will be filled with reports and legislation by the end of Convention. Some of us had meetings today, but most committees get started tomorrow. My first meeting of the Prayer book, Liturgy and Church Music committee is at 8 tomorrow morning. After getting my registration materials, I went to look at the exhibits. There are displays from publishers, vestment makers, advocacy organizations and various church groups. Each of the seminaries has a booth, and most of them seem to be giving out tote bags. The UTO has prayer cards, buttons, and a little blue change purse labeled "my pocket blue box". The Seaman's Church Institute, which does ministry with the crews Of ships coming into port in New York (offering, among other things, warms hats and scarves), is promoting knitting mini watch caps for an awareness campaign about their work. They hope to collect 1200 little caps. You can also buy an icon, a cross made of wood or silver or glass, or you can collect magnets, lanyards, fortune cookies or a chocolate covered pretzel rod (from the Association of Anglican Musicians--they bill them as mini organ pipes). Most of us will wander through the exhibits again, but the work begins in earnest tomorrow. At 6pm tomorrow night, several of us will accompany our bishop-elect to a hearing on his election. Since he was elected within 120 days of General Convention, the Committee on the Election of Bishops will receive evidence of the election and then (we sincerely pray) recommend that the House of Bishops and House of Deputies vote to confirm his election. No doubt tomorrow's blogger will report on the results of that. Each member of the deputation will be offering a snapshot of General Convention. Each day one or more of us will post. Hopefully, I'll figure out how to post photos soon, so you can see the tiny hats and some of the other sights. General Convention is hard work, but also a great joy. We are grateful to be present, to do the work, to offer prayers in community on behalf of the Church, and take part in the work of discernment. On behalf of the deputation, Meredyth Wessman Ward, Clergy Deputy Church of the Epiphany Wilbraham.