– Rev. Dick Fylling, member of the Annual Meeting Planning Work Group, reflects on the recent anniversary of the end of the Civil War and its relation to our work together as we gather as a Conference at the upcoming Annual Meeting.
On New Year’s Day, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. Until then, The War Between the States – The Civil War – had been about the resolve to save the Union.
That day, the Civil War became a war for freedom.
On April 9, 1865, at Appomattox, Virginia, General Robert E. Lee shook hands with General Ulysses S. Grant following Lee’s surrender after completing the formal terms of that surrender.
Five days later, on Good Friday, April 14, John Wilkes Booth fired the shots that killed President Lincoln.Last Thursday, at 2pm, this nation took time to remember the date of the 150th Anniversary of the signing of the surrender by the South. It is, indeed, a day to remember.
As we prepare for the June 12-14, 2015 Annual Meeting of the Minnesota Conference of the United Church of Christ, let us consider how far we have come since the signing of that document and also how far we have left to go in the battle against racism and discrimination – in our lives, in our churches, in our communities, our states and our nation and beyond.
As we prepare ourselves for addressing our theme: Going Deeper: Trusting in Sacred Conversation, let us be mindful of the implications of that day in early April, 1865 for that time, for today and for the future as address the continuing dehumanization of racism and the battle to which we must never surrender.
Annual Meeting Planning Work Group
June 12-14, 2015
College of St. Benedict, St. Joseph, MN
The theme of “Going Deeper: Trusting in Sacred Conversation” comes out of a resolution adopted at last year’s annual meeting, “Dismantling Racism and Creating Diversity in the Minnesota Conference”.