“Perhaps we’ll get through the debate on this resolution quickly and get on to dinner early!” “I DOUBT IT!!” That doubt proved to be true. Pastor Stuart and I are at the meeting of the Desert Southwest Annual Conference in Mesa for a few days. This is the annual business meeting of the DSW Conference, with lay and clergy delegates attending from all over our Conference. Our lay delegates are Kelly Deyoe, Casey Compernolle, Robert Kittrell and Patricia Kittrell. Many others from St. Mark’s are here, too.  Kim Ogle is here with youth from our Conference, including Alex Carsten from St. Mark’s. Martha Lundgren, Alberta and David Farnsworth, Marjie Hrabe, Don Booth, Rev. Judy Boroto and Kayla Flannery are here, too. (I’ve probably missed someone.) We began yesterday with an opening plenary, sessions for the clergy and laity, opening worship and a session considering and voting on a resolution. In the next few days, we’ll be doing much more work, including much discussion at tables about the future direction of the Desert Southwest Conference and the United Methodist Church. I have the honor of preaching at the service of ordination tomorrow night, June 15, at 7:00 p.m. Prayers are welcome!

At St. Mark’s this Sunday, June 16, Pastor Evy will lead worship around the theme of Doubt as we continue the series on Words to Think About.  We’re often told not to doubt, but the reality is that doubt can be an important part of a journey of faith and can even help us grow toward greater love of God. Come and see and hear.

I want to let you know that sometime late Wednesday night or early Thursday morning (June 12-13), the courtyard of St. Mark’s was painted with anti-Christian graffiti. Our maintenance supervisor, Bart Dale, found this when he arrived on Thursday and notified me and other staff, members of the Board of Trustees, and the Pima County Sheriff. Bart and Trustees members, Bill Fritz and Dan Dyer, worked very hard all day to remove the graffiti and will be continuing that work today. My belief is that calmly and immediately removing the signs of this vandalism and not giving attention to it through the media discourages future acts like this. Now, we pray for those who are led to do such actions, and give great thanks for Bart, Bill, Dan, Pastor Evy and staff members who directly helped or advised on the cleanup. Our Trustees have already been making plans for surveillance cameras in the courtyard and West Patio. Thank you for your prayers.

Blessings, Sharon