World Convention

note:  I’ve still not worked out how Katherine can post her own material, so she sent me the following post which I am putting up for her.  This is Katherine’s material.  – Mr. Answer

As I write this, there are thousands of men and women from over 170 countries who have gathered at the World Convention in Nashville, TN.  Every four years since 1930, those who have a history in the Restoration Movement-which includes the Christian churches, Disciples of Christ, and churches of Christ gather together for this event in different venues.  This is the first time in 16 years that it is being held in the United States.  

I had never heard about this until a few months ago, but as someone who has a vested interest in this movement and heritage, this is VERY encouraging.  I would encourage you to go to their site and read more about the convention, our history, and efforts to unify around the common bond of Jesus Christ.

They describe this gathering as “a time of worship, fellowship, and sharing; but more importantly a time of expressing our UNITY IN DIVERSITY.  There is recognition and appreciation of each others traditions and practices, while at the same time affirming our unity in Jesus Christ and our common heritage in a unity movement which began over 200 years ago”.

They claim that “For over 75 years we have been working to build fellowship, understanding, common purpose and effectiveness within the family of churches known as Christian, churches of Christ, and the Disciples of Christ”.

Lorraine and Lyndsey Jacobs, the former General Secretaries of the World Convention have written a great article entitled “Are We There Yet?”

They claim “Now is an appropriate time to be looking ahead.  As the world moved into the twenty-first century, our global family moves into its third century.  This is our bicentennial era of the Stone and Campbell movements.  And it is also clear that we are ‘not there yet’.  That also makes it ‘map and compass’ time.

You probably know the saying that ‘those who without goals are bound to achieve them’.  Unless we shape our third century (seeking God’s presence and leading under the Lordship of Christ), our third century will most certainly shape us.

The pioneers in our movement were deeply concerned that the church of their time was not effective in proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ.  They saw division of the church, which had broken down even further in many cases into bitter sectarianism, as one of the major obstacles to the church’s witness.  A divided church could not, without hypocrisy, preach the gospel of reconciliation.

How could unity, they wondered-the unity which Christ prayer for ‘that the world might believe’-be achieved?

The question led to their vision of a church united by restoring ‘the ancient order of things’-returning to the New Testament to discover what the church was to be like. Surely, they felt, that would be a sound basis for all Christians to find their unity in Christ.

Unity became their polar star.  Unity was to be an end in itself but unity would guide the church to becoming the serving, witnessing, universal church of Jesus Christ.

In this transformed Christian community (which they at first hoped to achieve from within existing denominations), there would be ‘unity in essentials, liberty in nonessentials and love in all things’.”

There are many churches that have gone back into the bitter sectarianism way and have gone FAR away from the original goals of our movement-of unity and love, of being “Christians only, but not the only Christians”.  They have missed the point of Jesus’ prayer and have decided to separate themselves from anyone that may differ with them.  Some do it unknowingly and some do it willingly.  Many claim no ties to our history whatsoever-which I believe is only to their detriment.  This is especially true for those that claim we are the “one true church” because it would ruin that premise.  We can learn a lot from history-the good, the bad, and the ugly-and move forward from here.  To ignore it is useless-it will still be there.  I love that these people who participate in the World Convention are embracing and learning from history-not letting it shape them-but are coming together to search for ways to unify HERE and NOW amidst our differences, in order to further the kingdom of God.

So, where do we go from here? That will be addressed in the next post…for now, what are your thoughts?  


14 thoughts on “World Convention

  1. Just a slight correction. Lorraine and Lyndsey Jacobs are the past General Secretaries of World Convention. Jeff Weston is the current General Secretary.

  2. Seriously Lee, why do you think Johnny isn’t a nice guy? Are there any preachers that you would say or call teaching falsely? Are you familiar with our local preacher Galimore, who has more than one wife, and a Pentecostal like yourself? Is he sinning and or does God permit him to marry little teenagers, while having a wife already? My point is what’s so wrong about Johnny calling out people ? We all do it ….we are doing Johnny the same way Johnny does others. I honestly have no problem with Johnny naming people – heck, he has had my dad on there several times, but if he feels he should do that, I have no problem. After all, aren’t we doing the same thing ??

  3. randy ,
    what in the world are you rambling about with this galimore stuff? and how does he have anything to do with
    johnny? and because im pentacostal are you trying to connect the two of us? he has every right to “call out”
    any preacher he likes. i could care less
    but where exactly have you been? do we need a running tally of johnnys exploits on the side of this blog?
    and from what i remember he talked to you on numerous
    occasions like a dog. so is he a nice guy?……….
    nice guy he aint.

  4. Lee, You missed my point. I was just saying that if we can call out Galimore and others for things we see wrong – then Johnny can do that as well. Yes, Johnny has said some things about me, and I have him. I guess I just dont let him get to me…when he makes others mad or angry, I just laught at him…anyways enough about that

  5. well since i didnt make myself clear to you randy,
    let me try again.
    not only is he not a “nice guy”, but if i compare him to
    jesus i dont even recognize him.
    and before anyone give examples of his kindness to all
    of his potential converts. scripture covers that.luke6:32-34
    quit trying to be a sideline supporter of the man and this part isnt just for you randy but for all the ones
    who seem to be trying to hedge their bets.
    johnny spreads hatefulness and all some here seem to be willing to say is “hes really good deep down”.
    well my pick and shovel are broke and im tired of digging.

  6. Lee, I find good and bad in everybody. Johnny isnt perfect and neither am I. I do support many of the things he does. I think he gets to people because they cant answer him and that is what makes people hate or dislike him. He has said things about me, my dad too…but that stuff doesn’t bother me Lee. He has just as much right as we do….I mean look at how you are talking about him….kettle calling the pot black. You cant have the right to talk trash/smack about him and then think he doesn’t have the right to do the same. My beef is not with Johnny at all…I could care less about attacks on me and my dad….I find it funny at times that he would tell Shawn in Texas things about me and my dad…..that seemed to be pretty desperate and childlike of him, but that’s his choice to do so….if that makes him feel good to do that….more power to him. But, I think our focus should be on their teaching….may I ask you Lee, what has Johnny done to you, to make you dislike him so much….cant you just forgive-forget and move on ??

  7. Something else I find funny too. Many people on here are willing to talk about Johnny but few are willing to go there and visit them at their meeting place and few are willing to meet and talk to him in person……….seems to me many are afraid of him….not him the man, but him with his doctrine. If not, lets all go visit them or at least meet with Johnny to discuss the things we have here….

  8. coc,
    as to your last question first.if you have been keeping up with my comments you would already know the answer to that.
    now then show me where i am “trash talking”.
    i have said he isnt a nice guy , that he doesent resemble jesus, that he is hateful and also is pragmatic in that he is looking to make converts.
    that can be proved by listening to him talk.
    he is only cordial to the ones he believes he can convert. the only reason i say anything is that he is doing a disservice to god by attaching his antics to him. of course you support him you are a coc member.
    that is ok with me,wonderful.but i have spoken nothing
    that isnt true.
    he doesnt serve the jesus. he only succeeds in scattering the weak. and im not going to sit and listen to some here whitwash his works.

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