Churches Listening Together
CTE's Forum in September, Churches Listening Together, is a unique meeting place, the largest representative gathering of the Churches in England. Jenny Bond, who is co-ordinating it for the first time, writes:
They told me it would be nerve-racking, and it is! Will we have spare rooms or will we run out of them? I still don't know as registrations are coming in frustratingly slowly. In mid August, if those with a right to attend have not booked, we shall open the Forum to whoever wants to come, even if we will then have to turn others away. So if you are a delegate and intend to come, register now please! If you are not a delegate and would like to come, register your interest now and we'll e-mail you in mid August. If you want to come just for the Tuesday, we're accepting day delegates now.
Wednesday morning worship at the Forum will consist of different options which we hope delegates will offer in advance. Again, offers of help are coming in rather slowly and we may have to rethink this if they are not forthcoming. I sit at my desk wondering if everyone is holding back, thinking that I will be swamped by offers. Not so...
And there will be a marketplace. In the past this has been a vibrant part of the Forum with many aspects of church life represented. We are still accepting requests for space but, again, these are coming in more slowly than I had anticipated.
... and exciting!
Despite everything, the Forum is also very exciting. Archbishop Doyé Agama, Forum Moderator, was instrumental in giving this Forum its shape and its emphasis on Orthodoxy, Pentecostalism and Young People. Arrangements for the young people have taken up a disproportionate amount of my time recently but tomorrow, Saturday 1 August, twelve of them depart in a coach for the Chemin Neuf 'Welcome to Paradise' experience. We've set up a private Facebook page for them and they're introducing themselves there, discussing the best radio to take for the simultaneous translation service and wondering about the availability of showers! They'll come back to lead the Tuesday evening session which I think will be a highlight of the Forum.
We're hoping to have more young people at this Forum than before and Churches have been asked to consider including a young leader in their delegation. Churches Together in England is committed to this emphasis and we are welcoming young people as day guests on the Tuesday. If you are under 35, please join us at no cost. You do, however, have to register for a place...
Please keep the Forum in your prayer, whether or not you are able to join us.