International Network of Reform Movements

Our meeting began last evening.  All except two were present — those will be arriving today.

There was great fun and laughter as people re-connected who had not met in a long time, and others were meeting for the first time.  So there was lots to talk about, and great excitement.

We began the first formal session and 7.00 in the evening with prayer, a brief introduction of each person, and then down to business.  The two facilitators, Amanda and Holger, gave us a question, and asked us to get into groups of four around a table.  The question was:  Why had we responded to the invitation to come?. After about twenty minutes on this we were asked to move around to different tables, and given a second question:  What were we bringing with us to the conference? A third time we moved around, and in our new groups we were asked to talk about what we had heard at the first two table conversations.  Finally, in a period of silence, we were asked to write on a piece of paper what most stood out for us from the evenings discussion.

What was most notable for me from the evening was the energy around the place.  This is an amazing collection of people.  They are so bring and full of life;  they clearly care enormously for our Church;  and they are full of ideas about how we might move forward.

The two points I wrote on my piece of paper at the end of the evening:   the Energy of the group;  the point made strongly by one person about being wary of ideologues.  Like any other movement, Church Reform can easily drift into ideology, and at that point listening ceases.

Afterwards I went in to town to do a short interview on the UTV Ireland news.  And then I joined many of the group in the bar for more chat and fun.

Today is a new day!