On July 6, the first joint session TEConversation, that on racial reconciliation, took place on in the House of Deputies space at the Austin Convention Center. Truth and reconciliation is a priority in the Diocese of Maryland. The goal of these conversations is to further the work of the Church, deepen relationships and provide resources to help communicants across the Church have conversation in their parishes and communities.
[July 6, 2018] [The Episcopal Church] One of the unique offerings at this triennium’s General Convention are TEConversations (The Episcopal Church Conversations), which will be held during three joint sessions of the House of Bishops and the House of Deputies over the coming week. Each conversation offers multiple speakers, video presentations and engaging interludes around three priorities of this gathering: racial reconciliation, evangelism and care of creation. Speakers represent international leaders, well-known Episcopalians, and rising voices in the Church.
Each TEConversation are available live so communicants can participate concurrently with deputies and bishops. Each will also be available online, with support materials, for local use in churches at a later date.
Speakers for the first TEConversation include: a reformed, former leader of a worldwide racist skinhead organization, Arno Michaelis; director of the Absalom Jones Episcopal Center for Racial Healing in Atlanta, Georgia, Dr. Catherine Meeks; and the Rev. Nancy Frausto, a native of Zacatecas, Mexico and DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) beneficiary priest. The Racial Reconciliation Conversation will take place July 6 from 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Central. A discussion guide may be found here.
A second TEConversation focuses on Evangelism. Featured speakers include: the Rev. Dr. Lauren Winner, prolific author, vicar and associate professor of Christian Spirituality at Duke Divinity School; the Rt. Rev. Alan Scarfe, Bishop of Iowa, whose deep commitment to spiritual renewal and creative thinking has inspired a year of revivals across the state and energized his constituency; and the Rev. Daniel Vélez-Rivera, whose ministry has been one of planting new Latino ministries and creating sustainable dual-language congregations. The Evangelism Conversation is from 2:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Central on Saturday, July 7. A discussion guide is here.
The third and final TEConversation will consider our Care of Creation as committed Christians. As we safeguard the integrity of creation, how do we embrace responsible use, and encourage more conversation around climate and faith? Speakers include the Archbishop of Cape Town, the Most Rev. Dr. Thabo Cecil Makgoba, who has a deep resume around ethical leadership and stewardship; Bernadette Demientieff, an Alaskan native and firm protector of Indigenous sacred lands and waters; and the Rev. Stephanie McDyre Johnson, an environmental planner and educator and co-chair of the Episcopal Church’s Advisory Council on the Care of Creation. The Care of Creation Conversation will take place Tuesday, July 10 beginning at 10:30 a.m. and concluding at noon Central. The discussion guide may be found here.
Follow the TEConversations from home, gather friends at church to participate or visit General Convention as a visitor for the day. Visitor passes are available for $50 a day onsite at the Austin Convention Center.