The highlight of last week’s C&MA district conference, in my opinion, was the public reconciliation between Christ Community Church and Trinity Interdenominational Church. The short history of it is thirty years ago, CCC (then Omaha Gospel Tabernacle) went through a church split. Those that split away founded Trinity. The basis of the split was over gifts of the spirit, or how charismatic the church should be.
I’ve been working at CCC, since 2005, and I’ve been made aware of the history between Trinity and CCC. However, CCC had a good relationship with Trinity since I’ve been working here as well. I just thought people at each church let bygones be bygones and started working with one another again. Especially since there were new pastors from when the original split happened.
Well, it was cool to witness this public reconciliation. It had been in the works for awhile. The below video is almost thirty minutes long. I have some additional thoughts below.
What took place is extremely rare in ministry. Having gone through a ministry split, when I was in Arkansas, it was cool to see reconciliation between the two sides.
Some have asked why it didn’t come out sooner, since the two churches met in December of 2008. Who knows, but I liked it taking place amidst the backdrop of the C&MA district conference. As Pastor Les Beauchamp, of Trinity, said, the C&MA is part of Trinity’s history.
The next day at the conference, C&MA President Gary Benedict apologized to Les Beauchamp for the denomination not addressing the original conflict thirty years ago. Benedict took time to explain and elaborate on the conflict.
I had thought the relationship between CCC and Trinity was strong already, but now its even stronger. If CCC and Trinity both can put aside secondary issues, and focus in on what’s important, tremendous positive change and impact will happen in the city.
Some of you know of the conflict that has occurred at Trinity in recent years. I hope this reconciliation between CCC and Trinity can play a part in reconciliation between Trinity and others.
I appreciated hearing what Les Beauchamp had to say.
I think one of Bob Thune’s legacies here is he was integral in starting the reconciliation process between Trinity and CCC.
Last Monday, some of us CCC staff had lunch with Gary Benedict and he made an interesting observation. Someone asked him what some challenges are that face the C&MA. One of his responses was a challenge facing the denomination was becoming too rational. He said we (C&MA) deal with a lot of fear of the ‘wacky’ (gifts/manifestations of Holy Spirit), and that we need to see more signs and wonders. The denomination needs to be careful to not throw the baby out with the bath water in this area. His words are interesting, in light of the CCC-Trinity reconciliation, since the split occurred over “gifts of the spirit”. As we go forward, I hope we have learned from history and can rectify any conflict over the Holy Spirit in a healthy manner.
This past week I was reminded of how I’m proud to be a part of the C&MA, to work at CCC, and to partner with Trinity.