I was surprised that an event billed in part as a revival would have an almost pervasive timidity about mentioning Jesus and his central role in everything that was happening there. It was odd. Maybe our common discipleship was a given. Or maybe I was just at the wrong events or talking to the wrong people. Whatever the reason, I saw and heard little that was overtly Christian at this Christian gathering. I could just as easily have been at an Earth Day celebration or a political rally.
Now, Miss Caimano is not exactly a card carrying member of the religious right. She is a priest in one of the most liberal denominations in America. And yet even she was surprised by how little Jesus seemed to matter at the Emergent woodstock in North Carolina.
I was heartened to be with people who cared about such issues. But the longer I was there and the more people I talked with, the more I realized what was missing. It was the very reason that all these topics are important to Christians: Jesus.
I know that the resurrected Christ was present and that I was in the company of many faithful Christians. Yet despite all the good work that was in this place, I had a hard time finding and feeling the evangelical spirit of those whose work is discipleship. Whether I was listening to presenters or visiting with people or overhearing conversations around me, Jesus did not come up often.