After my day in Santa Fe, I returned to Albuquerque for business: the annual APCE convention (Association of Presbyterian Church Educators). It was a lot more interesting than it sounds. Colder, too.
The ice in the midwest delayed my boss' arrival by two days, but the cold found us anyway. Albuquerque experienced record-setting cold of -10° (a biting -30° wind chill) that kept everyone indoors. That was okay, because the workshops were really good. I've been to other conventions where the presentations were pretty marginal, but this group is comprised of professional educators, so the quality was consistently high. Some groups don't seem to understand that knowing is not the same as teaching; it takes skill to be able to transfer knowledge in a way that can be grasped easily by your audience. It was a genuine delight to watch good teachers in action.
Even so, there was one major disappointment in the workshop offerings: not one workshop addressed LGBT issues. And in a huge display hall filled with vendors, only a single related book could be found: Jesus, the Bible, and Homosexuality: Explode the Myths, Heal the Church by Jack Rogers. It's a great book, but really, only one? A friend has challenged me to present just such a workshop at next year's convention, but the deadline looms a few days away and I don't have a good core idea for this target group that will guarantee my selection. If I can pull it off, I'll apply, but it may be another year before I can do it.
I came away with some much-needed inspiration for my work at church. I shipped home a bunch of books and then I took off for Florida for some necessary down time. More on that soon!