Clergy conferences -- like all conferences, I suppose -- are uneven at best. Although time with one another, since we're all busy in our own places, is a value in itself, the topic's value and the atmosphere of the venue are significant variables.
I am so pleased to have participated these two days. The faculty of 14 is a fascinating, diverse, stimulating group, each one with whom I had conversation challenging, optimistic, smart, all of them I'd be happy to get to know better. This exposure has been beneficial, answering two important, even crucial, questions Tal and I have not been able to get answered satisfactorily since I stopped working. I'm leaving the Hilton feeling greatly hopeful, more whole.
Although the faculty came to the Diocese of Upper South Carolina from all over the country -- Arizona to Florida, Indiana to New York -- with specific topics to address with active and retired clergy, what has impressed me it not exclusively those topics -- health care issues, fitness strategies at all stages of life, financial options. Their interests are intense and varied, as well -- gardening, needlework, hiking, NPR (specifically "Car Talk"), public education. Those two areas, their interests and their specific areas of expertise, has left me feeling flooded with riches.