Thursday, 19 March 2009

Chicago: day 4

Today was a good day - again! It was our breakout day where we were going to the seminars that we had pre-chosen before coming to Chicago - and I suppose some of the stuff that I was most looking forward to as it was stuff I was interested in.

Session 1 was on helping kids through family transition - like separation, divorce, grief, etc - and was led by Beth who runs the ministries to kids in Willow who are going through those things. She was inspirational and I would have loved to spend the next few hours just chatting to her! I had to settle for her email address which I plan to use.

Session 2 was with Ivy Beckwith who has written the book that we use on the Children's Ministry course - and which is quite tough to read. She was really interesting though but I would have liked her to go deeper. I suppose she was doing a start off seminar looking at Children's Ministry in a Postmodern world but because we have read the book we wanted her to go deeper and she didn't do that. We did have a chat with her after though and she said she would love to come to Ireland and do Building Blocks sometime so that was a result.

Session 3 was on te Spiritual formation in pre-schoolers and was not what I was expecting but was better in a different way! Instead of helping me think about stuff in work and how to do ministry with preschoolers, it helped me think about some stuff to do with my Masters and some issues I think through there. I have not been sure how to connect my Masters stuff with work and faith issues with kids but that seminar today helped to join some of the dots! Again a result!

Then came the best part of the day......JC came and we were going for dinner!!! I have really enjoyed the experience of being in Chicago and the conference and all of that but the best thing of this trip has been being able to see JC and hang out with her. And we discovered tonight that I will see her again on Saturday and go and see where she lives! I loved the year that JC and I had in Belfast when we worked at Fitzroy but we have only seen each other once since then and I have realised this week just how much I have missed our friendship, the seeing each other and chatting regularly friendship and it has been great to have that this week. I love friendship!

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