It’s been a few weeks since the Be Ready conference but I thought it would still be worthwhile to do a bit of a review. [Scratch that, it’s been months. Somehow I overlooked clicking “publish” on this one so it just sat in the draft folder forever. My bad.]
The thoughts that follow are a few of my own combined with specific feedback from others I spoke with.
Very briefly, about the logistics, everything seemed to flow smoothly. Registration went well, lunch went well, people flowed from one venue to the next with ease and so forth. That part seemed virtually free of speed bumps in the road.
Also, the overall quality of the weekend was spectacular. One individual, when commenting on the programs, said they were very professionally done, but that level of professionalism is consistent with everything else he’d seen from Faith Beyond Belief. This was a common observation. Some people felt the price was a little on the steep side (others marvelled that it was so cheap!) but I think the quality of speakers justified the price. They were no lightweights!
The value of the conference for any given individual varied widely depending on the individual. Those who had never really heard of (or investigated) Apologetics seemed to fall into one of two categories, those for whom the conference went way over their heads and those for whom the conference was an absolute god-send. From the conversations I had I would wager that there were more people in the second category than in the first, so while it may have been a little on the heady side, it clearly had enough content for your novice Apologist to walk away edified.
From my assessment I would say the majority of those in attendence were new to Apologetics, so the comments in the previous paragraph probably describe most people. But there were some, like many in our group, for whom this was perhaps “old hat.” One friend of mine fit this category. He is well familiar with the majority of the speakers and was not in the least bit surprised by what they presented. While he felt something of a “yawn” reaction to the conference, he had invited a friend of his – a young man – to attend with him who was relatively unfamiliar with the field of Apologetics. This young man was deeply encouraged by the conference and found it highly valuable which gave my friend a fresh perspective on the value of the conference. While it may not have been directly beneficial to him, it most certainly was very valuable to the Church in Calgary on the whole.
Another fellow commented that the Be Ready conference, “was one of the most rewarding of its kind since my conversion 38 years ago, something dramatic took place. Just about everyone I spoke with said they were glad that we have some thing here in Calgary its about time.” I emphatically agree.
By far the Be Ready conference was a resounding success with many attendees offering very positive feedback and giving indications of changes coming in their lives. The content was new to many people, but the content is vitally important and its importance was acknowledged by those who attended. If they take it seriously then I think it is safe to say the church in Calgary is in for some changes in the near future!