Presbyterian Women’s Churchwide Gathering will be held August 8-11, 2024 in St. Louis, MO. They’ve issued a video to help get women excited and prepared. It’s available on the 2024 PW Gathering web page https://www.2024pwcwg.org
You can sign up for their email messages on that page as well. Jeanette Huie is the 2024 Churchwide Gathering Chair. She’s written “Reflections of Love” for the gathering.
Reflections of Love Jeanette Huie 2024 Churchwide Gathering Chair 1 Corinthians 16:13–14 Keep alert; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. Let all that you do be done in love. (NIV)
The theme for the 2024 Churchwide Gathering was selected by the Planning Team in April 2022 after reviewing a long list of suggestions. “Do Everything in Love” stood out among the rest as it was during a time when news reports were filled with acts of violence, hatred and greed in our communities and around the world.
In the absence of love, there can be hate, fear and indifference. In California, the state where I reside, the number of reported hate crime events increased 20% in 2022 over the previous year. These were crimes targeting people because of their race, sexual orientation, and/or religion. The theme for the Churchwide Gathering is feeling more relevant than ever.
Love does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. Other characteristics of love written in 1 Corinthians include patience and kindness. This morning was garbage day on my block and my neighbor’s cans were off the curb when I drove home. I thought I could park my car between their garbage cans and the car in front of me but as I reversed the car and got really, really close to the garbage can, another neighbor sprinted over and pulled it out of my way. That act of kindness was a great way to start the day! Love does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered. It keeps no record of wrongs and does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes and always perseveres.
I’m looking forward to being in community with all who attend the Churchwide Gathering and being inspired and challenged by the worship services, plenary speakers and workshop presenters! With hate, fear and indifference in our midst, choosing to love would make a positive difference in our lives and the lives of others. We not only need to pray for a better world, we also need to act; let all that you do be done in love.