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May 18, 2015


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Edward Pillar

Hi Neil - thanks for the post...I smiled when I read your points...I agree with some of what you say...having 20 minute sessions worked well, having the young people involved, making lunchtime a key element of the day are all positives of the day. But, I felt that having an AGM for BUGB and then for BMS that was just 20 minutes long was a great way to have an AGM. I agree that we are a community that seeks to discern the mind of Christ, but I really don’t think that a gathering of 1200 people is the best place to do that. So, 20 minutes of reporting etc is fine by me. I was interested in some of the comments on your twitter feed about the BU Council. I’m not entirely sure of the role of the BU Council and so I can’t really comment...other than if it is fluffy then there’s probably no point. My own view is that it is the local church that is the priority and we need to be careful and/cautious about trying to make policy and mission decisions at a national level.
My other other point of difference is that I would have liked way more responsive liturgy... The band were great, the songs generally were ok, by I do prefer congregational engagement by way of responsive liturgy.
I was glad that there was no ‘keynote’ speaker. In the past I have too often struggled with ‘not very good’ keynote addresses. That doesn’t apply to everyone of course, but too often that has been the case.
I did appreciate the number of folk who spoke for a limited time - 4 minutes I think was the rule.
I agree that the ‘building on the foundations of those who have gone before' was an excellent way to honour those who had died in the last year and recognise new minister’s/missionaries, but I too would have like the new minister/missionaries to be named and so on...
I am aware that the decision has been taken to have three one day Assemblies.I am particularly interested in what might emerge following this period...
blessings Neil.

Neil Brighton

Thanks for commenting Edward.
I'm not in a position to comment on BU Council; I was a member for a number of years but am no longer. So whether it is fluffy, as one tweeter suggested, is difficult for me to know. That said, historically, Council has been the place (made up of people from across union life) where things could be examined in more detail. And while Council is the place for more detailed consideration I continue to believe that there needs to be space for wider deliberation by Assembly.

I do understand the worship point, I have other Baptist friends who would struggle with the language of power used in many of the songs and with the absence of justice issues. The great thing about our Union is that we can be Baptists together in our diversity.

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