Future of the Church
Catalyst Convention Paper
October 25, 2008
When most people think about going to a college class, images of desks, blackboards, and classrooms, not live elephants, African children’s choirs and Jeff Foxworthy. However, that is exactly what we encountered in Atlanta, Georgia on October 7-10. To be honest, Catalyst was one of the most awesome events I have ever encountered. To enter into a building and encounter 10,000 men and women all there for the same reason; to learn how to better lead their congregation, their fellow leaders and the people around them, was a delight to my eyes. To watch men and women who have struggled through the battlefields of church leadership, to see men who have struggled and succeeded in the “secular frontier” and to listen to the words of wisdom, hope and guidance that flowed from their lips was not only a blessing but a joy.
When I originally signed up for this class there were three primary reasons that I wanted to attend this trip. To be honest, none of them were originally because of my holy desire to become more like Jesus, or be more like Billy Graham in my leadership characteristics. I was truly excited to be able to miss school for four days, while relaxing in a hotel room, I was excited to know that a number of my close friends were going to be joining me in the class, and I was very excited to go on a trip along with the chair of the youth ministry major as well as my advisor. Who knew the brownie points I might be able to score on a four day Jesus-fest? However, as the class got closer, I began to question my once rock-solid motives. I had never heard of this event before, and as the class date got closer and closer to its arrival I began to be excited about the possibility of meeting thousands of other church leaders, seeing masters of their trade, and listening to them divulge their secrets to the awaiting masses.
When the class actually began I was becoming more and more...