Travel from South Africa for the Affirmation Conference in Salt Lake? You bet!
by Peter van der Walt
There are many different types of Mormons. I’m the weird kind. To me, Affirmation is the closest thing I have to a church. It is where I fellowship, where I learn and grow, where I act out my faith and how my faith is, in turn, affirmed.
To understand why I will attend the New Frontiers Conference in the middle of a busy work calendar, at a time when the Rand Dollar exchange is at historic lows and when I have a couple of degree assignments due that very week, you have to know what the Conference means to me. New Frontiers, to me, is a pilgrimage. I will visit Salt Lake for the first time. Meet several of my heroes, old friends and new friends. I will get to sing and pray and fellowship with others who are just like me (not such a biggie if you live in the States, I guess, but Africa is a looooong trip away).
New Frontiers is evidence that by small means the Lord brings about great things. That He has, in fact, consecrated my afflictions for my gain. That we are, to have joy. That He has not forsaken me – that He invites me to a feast.
New Frontiers is an opportunity… to solidify links, build networks, make connections. Nurture old friendships and start new ones. Talk business, talk life, talk love – and learn from the stories of others. Maybe get my partner to dance with Benji Schwimmer. New Frontiers is an affirmation… that I am not alone. That God is everybody’s God – even mine. That men and women from all over the world and of all ages have much more in common than they have differences.
Plus, Trevor Cook is going – all the way from China! How would it look if I miss it? 😉