Called and Connected
The 77th Toronto Conference
Annual General Meeting, June 9, 2002, Blue Mountain Resort
We live in a fast changing world that is experiencing
globalization, and we are also part of the globalization
force. Not only is it a phenomenon in this world with globalization,
but it creates a new culture.In my recent trip to Thailand for the International
Network Forum on Multicultural Ministry, I witnessed the big gap between the rich and the poor, which
causes an imbalance in the lives of the people in this country.
At this gathering, church representatives, from more than 30
joys and concerns and concluded that we are all connected and
called to work together for God's mission of peace and justice.
This tells us "where we are now" and "where we are to go" in a
We, as the people of The United Church of Canada, faithfully
witness to the good news of Christ. Compared to many other countries in the world,
Canada is blessed with economic well-being and secure social
benefits. Within this global village we realize that many areas need to be
mended, and are called to join in justice action for reconciliation and healing.
As we read the signs of the times, we find that the Toronto
Conference has the gift of remarkable diversity. This gift of diversity becomes
a blessing when we recognise and celebrate it as God's gift given to
us. Some of us have gathered to share our visions for the future
and realized that we have so many good stories to share. Some of us also raise our voices for justice and peace in this
society that experiences confrontation between different religious and ethnic
As we venture further into the reign of God, the Toronto Conference has begun to work more deliberately by
reflecting on how to nurture spirituality, to develop healthy ministry and to
strive for justice. I believe that this will prepare a strong foundation and help
us to be able to tell what we are doing and why we are doing it.
As we communicate with one another efficiently with mutual
respect, with all possible ways and tools, we will be able to come closer and we
will connect with each other to share stories, hopes and
dreams. My wish during this coming year is that, we encounter each
other heart to heart, face to face, hand in hand, and feel the sense of one
body. In this our journey, I saw a vision of a burning bush, the
flame of the Holy Spirit that grows and spreads through the whole mountain, the
whole of Canada, and to the ends of the world. In this journey together, we will sing praises: We are not
alone. God is with us. Thanks be to God!