Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Nazarene General Assembly - Day 7

With mixed emotions, many are spreading the news that we elected David Busic as our 40th General Superintendent.
On the plus side, David Busic is a stellar leader.  He has a tender, humble heart matched with a brilliant mind and a pure devotion to God.  That's about all you can ask for in a leader.
Except that he's one more white man.  We already have three other white American men serving on our Board of General Superintendents.  In a church where white North American men represent at most 15-20% of our members, they have historically represented anywhere from 85-100% of our General Superintendents in any given four years.  In fact, we have only had 2 - yes, count them, one ... two - GS's who were NOT white men - one white woman and one African man.
Two other candidates were in the top tier and in fact led for most of the voting.  Carla Sunberg is a District Superintendent and former missionary to Russia, and she would have been an excellent choice. Gustavo Crocker is a Guatemalan who is now the Eurasia Regional Director.  He is brilliant and visionary.  However, both capped out in their support base short of the 67% required for an election.
We already have enough white men.  So I believe Busic will be an outstanding leader for our church, and he could really help us make some of the significant changes we need to make in our church structure.  And yet, I am disappointed because our church also desperately needs more leadership from the other 80% of our church.
My facebook page has erupted with discussion on this issue, and I hope to write a meaningful blog later this week about why we are struggling in electing non-white men and how we can change this.  But no time for that today.

On the legislative front, we accomplished almost nothing of significance.  On the plus side, we avoided making a few hasty decisions by referring several prickly resolutions for further study.  On the negative side, we didn't do much that was meaningful - mostly just tweaking wording in a few places.

We will elect one more GS this assembly.  I long for an international candidate, but my faith is shaken.  Another white man is rising in the voting.  Despite the fact that Gustavo Crocker is leading again, there are early signs that he may face the same plateau effect.
May God open us to his will, humble our hearts, and push us in the direction of his Kingdom.
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