Mockingbird's 14th annual New York City conference, entitled "Hope for a Weary World", was a kind of summit for this utterly needed Word. I'll bet almost everyone there felt the same way.
Was it the fact that we hadn't met in person for two years? Is that what made this conference so refreshing? Was it the depth of the content, let alone the humor, the music and the sheer joy of the message? What was it?
For me it was the unique chord of utter realism with electric Hope. You could hear it in everything -- in Aaron's Zimmerman's timely video/s and tone, in David Zahl's Titian and St. Dismas, in the video by the German hardware company Hornbach that encapsulated base-line empathy, in Simeon (and Bonnie) Zahl's phrase "theory of change"; in the trenchant, applicable breakouts; in the delicious meals that we wanted never to end; in the tracks of JAZ's eternal 'Episco Disco'. The main thing was that chord of realism (even tragic realism) assimilated to us personally by means of Divine Hope.
Oh, and there was also a special guest among us. Did you see him? Not sure you did. He's been dead awhile but he came back for Mockingbird 2022. He was actually there!
He signaled to me, first, from the balcony. Then later, during "Drinks with PZ", from the back of the church. And he sent me something he had written ... to read to you. Which I include at the end of this cast.
All My Love -- and in its after-glow, which I hope will never fade.