Written by Michelle May
Members of the Southern California Nevada Conference of the United Church of Christ danced around the room waving signs that said, “Join the Celebration, Long Beach, 2013” as delegates and visitors joined in singing Kool and the Gang’s hit song “Celebration.”
This was the official invitation to the 3219 delegates and visitors to this year’s General Synod in Tampa, Fla., to start planning for the General Synod 29, to be held in Long Beach, Calif. June 28 through July 2, 2013.
“Our 143 culturally diverse congregations are ready to embrace you with cultural diversity, wonderful hospitality, and extravagant welcome,” said Conference Minister Felix Villanueva.
In describing the Southern California-Nevada Conference, he said that although diverse, the congregations work together to proclaim Christian love and to call for justice and peace for all. Community in diversity and youth and young adult ministries are two areas of focus for ministry in the Conference.
“Welcome to a place where the future of the UCC is being lived today,” Villanueva said.
A Long Beach promotional video was shown but a tagline at the end couldn’t help but tease Tampa attendees just a little: “See you in 2013. Oh, and by the way, there will be no humidity.”