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Convener's Corner — August 2012

Whew! What a weekend it was. As I write this, the National Lutheran Secretariat Annual Meeting (NLSAM) meeting is just wrapping up at Regis University in Denver, CO. It was a very Spirit filled weekend with powerful worship, great singing, wonderful speakers, and much sharing amongst with members of other Via de Cristo secretariats.

Attending the meeting was a rewarding experience and the Lutheran Via de Cristo of Minnesota was very well represented as we had nine delegates in attendance plus three individuals from Minnesota that serve on the national board. Two of the primary themes of the meeting were getting back to the basics and engaging the 4th Day community. Coincidentally, these are also two of the primary focuses for the current year for the Minnesota secretariat.

Our three goals for Minnesota this year are to increase weekend attendance, focus on the basics, and increase involvement of the 4th Day community. Last month, I highlighted some things each of us could do to increase weekend attendance. This month, I want to talk about getting back to the basics. While at the NLSAM, it was interesting to learn about the similarities and differences each of the secretariats has when it comes to holding weekends and emphasizing renewal groups and ultreyas. What struck me the most is how much effort is put into the weekend itself. Sure, we want the weekend to be memorable for the weekenders, but the weekend is just one step in the journey. Our mission on the weekend is really to equip the weekender to be able to go back into their community, job, and church and change their environment. The mission of Via de Cristo is not to focus on the three day weekend, but rather it is on the 4th Day. I would challenge each of us as we are working on teams to take this mission to heart. Make sure our weekends are really focused on preparing these weekenders for their 4th Day experience – it needs to be more than about the weekend. Let’s not get caught up in all the pageantry of the weekend – sure things are fun to do, but are they really essential to what we are all about. As you accept that next team assignment or sponsor that next weekender, make sure we are spending our time and energy on what really matters.

Last, I would suggest that if you are not in a Renewal Group, spend an hour or so this coming week and ask yourself why not? One of the keys to living in the 4th Day is the support and love we receive from our Renewal Groups. Think of three or four other people that would make a good Renewal Group for you and reach out them and ask if you can join them in renewal. If you are struggling, talk with your church liaison or reach out to your pastor or other 4th Dayers that you know. Joining a Renewal Group will have a profound impact on your success in the 4th Day.

As I close this month’s Convener’s Corner, I encourage you to check us out on Facebook using the link on our home page and watch for upcoming changes to our Facebook account.

De Colores!

Bob Cedergren
Minnesota Via de Cristo Convener


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