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Thanks to Steve and Kate, we have our official “Minute” from our time together. Check it out. Discuss.

As young adults, we are comfortable living in metaxis, the state of belonging completely and simultaneously to two different autonomous worlds. For that reason, we are relatively accustomed to living within the tensions that exist between the church and the larger culture. We feel comfortable acknowledging different views of church leadership and organization and recognizing the disparity between the current state of the denomination and our hopes for the future. In many ways this flexibility can be advantageous. We see that ambiguity can be a gift. However, we also recognize that we may have become so accustomed to living within these tensions that we often do not seek or are not effective at finding resolution. We are searching for a balance between accepting brokenness and seeking wholeness.

We find that many of the current polity structures and practices of the Church of the Brethren are still quite meaningful and relevant, but we yearn for new ways of doing church business. For example, we trust the validity of Annual Conference, but we seek a more effective process that does not create dissenting minorities and adversarial relationships. We believe that in church business, as well as in other areas of our lives, process and conversation are as important as the outcomes and products we achieve. Therefore, we offer the models of World Café, discernment circles, sidebar conversations, and mentorship as resources to facilitate our communication and business processes. Furthermore, we firmly believe that strong mentoring relationships with experienced leaders are needed to foster such communication and processes.

We understand that many of us are frustrated with the current state of leadership and/or organization within the church, but we find hope, light, and energy in the midst of that frustration. We recognize that the Body of Christ is in constant incarnational transformation. We hope for the transformation from “church” into a community of disciples and disciple-makers. We long for the church to be “Brethren” at its best, based in scripture, spiritual discernment, and social engagement. We acknowledge that even within this small group of young adults, there are many different ways of viewing scripture, spiritual discernment, and social engagement, but we are committed to seeking the mind of Christ together.

As a postscript, we recognize that many groups were not fully represented in this process and that this “minute” is not a fully authoritarian document or even a descriptive or prescriptive statement. We simply offer this report as a snapshot of some of the conversations that took place in this specific time and space.