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Message from the President

I want to start off by thanking everyone who came to Kampmeeting, held in beautiful San Diego, California this year.

The theme was “Celebrating Our Journey”—and celebrate we did! We told stories, remembered those we’ve lost, and shared life’s pains. We laughed, we cried, we embraced, and we danced. Above all, we saw that each person’s journey is unique, full of its own blessings and struggles.

The Kampmeeting presenters and topics this year highlighted the diversity of the Kinship family. All members were taken into consideration, and we had helpful conversations about gender, exploring how gender is shaped by society, what it means to be gender fluid and more. We also highlighted bisexuality and the unique experiences of the “B” members in the LGBTQ+ community.

I was delighted by the terrific job that the three coordinators did! They made sure everything ran smoothly and helped everyone stay engaged during the sessions. They went above and beyond to help all of the attendees feel comfortable and welcome. Thank you, Dr. Reg, Ronoldo, and Kristina!

We tried out several new things this year for Kampmeeting, such as a different format and more technology. Registration didn’t include lodging or meals this time, which gave attendees more flexibility in cost. Several attendees split Airbnb rentals to save money, while others preferred the convenience of staying at the hotel. Either way, this new option seemed to work well! One technological advance I really liked was the opportunity to do the session evaluations immediately via the link emailed or texted to us. I’m glad technology is being used more and more each year!

I heard many positive comments about the Family & Friends lunch on Saturday. For those of you who may not know, each year we have a special time for family members and friends (allies) to get together and talk about their experiences. They may share things they’ve struggled with or that helped them along their own journey, or they may ask questions. It’s a safe space for family and friends to express what is on their hearts. I’m so grateful for our allies who attend faithfully each year! They make our time together even more special.

It was wonderful to catch up with so many long-time members, and I truly loved meeting all the new attendees too. There were so many younger folks this year! I enjoy seeing new faces and watching the Kinship family grow year after year. It reminds me of why Kinship is here and how important our mission is. Together, we form a strong community where we can support one another. This is our journey, so let’s celebrate!

Yolanda Elliott
SDA Kinship International 

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