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Meet Chris

September 28, 2011
I’ve always been a Methodist. Every time I move to a new city, a transition I have made many times, my first order of business is to start touring UMCs in the area, looking for a church that meets my spiritual needs. This process has seen me through the doors of dozens of Methodist congregations in many different Conferences, and by building relationships in each of these places, I have learned much about the diversity of desires and needs within the larger Church. But it seems that in almost every place I visit, I see a common adversary of fulfilling those desires and meeting those needs; it’s an adversary with many names—apathy, complacency, ennui, comfort with the status quo, fear of rocking the boat, “Minnesota niceness”—but only one tactic—lulling good, faithful people into doing nothing, even as the world calls out in pain and in suffering and in isolation.
I want to be realistic. By standing for election to General and Jurisdictional Conference, I in no way become singly empowered to overturn this way of things, but it seems to me that if I don’t at least offer my time and energy and ideas to the larger church in an institutional capacity, I’m giving myself over to that adversary. If I’m not doing everything I can to build relationships and win allies and fight (with love and compassion) for the future of the Church and of those whose spiritual and corporeal lives depend on its vitality, then I am not doing enough. So I ran for a delegate position with a fire in my heart and in my belly to see the UMC be a Church that my children and grandchildren can be proud of—a Church that doesn’t hide from complicated questions, a Church that doesn’t shy from confrontation in the service of progress.
I told this to the Wisconsin Annual Conference, and enough delegates saw fit to trust me with their vote that I was elected to attend Jurisdictional Conference on the Annual Conference’s behalf.

From → Introductions

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