The YMCAs of Greater San Antonio, Houston and Dallas will unite together to provide a yearly Christian leadership conference for Y staff, board members and volunteers.
The YMCA of Greater San Antonio has been privileged to plan, promote and carry out Christian Leadership Conferences (CLC) with the funding provided by the C.J., Carrie D. and R. Howard Walker Foundation. Over the past few years, we have sought to build a partnership with Houston and Dallas with Houston hosting the conference in 2015.
In 2016, the YMCA of Greater San Antonio, along with Houston and Dallas Y’s, mutually decided to unite together and build our own Christian Conference. During this transition year, the Walker Foundation funds were depleted and there is no longer Christian Leadership Conferences across the country. We did not hold a conference in 2016, as Dallas was not able to host. Thus, the three Associations are now working toward holding the first ever CLAY conference November 3-5, 2017 at Camp Flaming Arrow, in Hunt, Texas. CLAY is an acronym for Christian Leaders at the Y.
In Scripture, we see various references to jars of clay.
2 Corinthians 4:7- “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all surpassing power is from God and not from us. “
Isaiah 64:8 “But now, O LORD, You are our Father, we are the clay, and You our potter; and all of us are the work of your hand.”
Jars of clay are delicate and can easily crack. In making a clay jar, the furnace carries the clay from an unfinished product to a beautiful piece. The delicate nature of a piece of porcelain can often describe our lives. We are prone to weakness. Impatience. Anger.
Discontentment. Failure. Frustration. Bad attitudes. We can easily break under pressure. All these actions affect our work and our relationships, with God and others. It is a reminder that we all need God in our lives and have the capability to grow in our Christian character to become a godly leader.
What if the staff of our Y’s embraced that it’s OK to be a clay jar? What if we saw our weaknesses as an asset? What if it were these weaknesses that drove us to need God? What if, in our weakness, we were able to demonstrate the surpassing power of God in our lives? We pray that our future conferences can address these delicate character issues and our need for God.
Purpose of CLAY:
1. We desire to provide a conference that will strengthen and equip our staff to live out the Christian values represented by the YMCA.
2. We desire to provide a weekend getaway to refresh, restore and renew our busy Y staff.
3. We hope the CLAY Conference will help our Y staff recognize their need for God in their lives and the opportunity for Him to mold and shape them to become servant leaders in their Y’s.
4. CLAY is a state-wide endeavor. By partnering with 3 YMCA’s, we have the opportunity to build strong connections, share ideas and learn from other Associations.
Theme for 2017 Conference: Finding Your Purpose
We are grateful for the privilege and opportunity to start this exciting new CLAY endeavor! Since CLC is no longer in our Y’s nationally, we realize that our plans and procedures with CLAY may be a model to other Y’s across the country!