Last full day at the Living Our Vows conference for bishops in their first three years. The morning was devoted to finishing our “critical incident” reports in small groups. This is an immensely valuable exercise, both for those giving the reports and those giving the feedback. Third-year bishops (my “Class of 2011” plus the Bishop of Cuba, which is an extra-provincial diocese) spent the afternoon with another academician in the field of “leadership studies” (usually nested in university business schools) learning about “complexity leadership” (having done “adaptive leadership” two years ago and “transformational leadership” only yesterday. I found the material very stimulating, but I’m kind of a theory wonk anyway. The world and the culture–which is to say, the environment in which the church pursues her mission–is changing and changing rapidly. If we’re on our game, we have an opportunity to not only skate ahead of the puck, but to stake out the territory that attracts the puck. Before dinner we celebrated the Eucharist. Bishop Michael Curry of North Carolina is guaranteed to be an unforgettable preacher. Tonight’s takeaway line: “The resurrection is real, but it’s not obvious.” Our mission is to manifest it, to make it obvious.

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