AACS/ICS Niagara Summer Conferences website looks for pictures and stories
The 75th anniversary of VE Day has come and gone, in the middle of a pandemic (which may some day warrant its own commemoration). Perhaps no other experience has been so thoroughly documented and described as the Second World War, an event that still lies at the edge of our collective consciousness. That memory, of great hardship, courage and sacrifice, is held high, ‘lest we forget’.
But the smaller bits of our past, seemingly mundane by comparison, are also commonly prone to neglect and ripe for remembrance. Just recently, I helped publish a book of memoirs, on behalf of my grandparents, Harm & Dina van der Laan’s, descendants. And, as I near retirement, I look forward to more retrospection, about my own life and my family’s.
Historical awareness, though often lacking generally, is a prominent feature of civilization and is both biblically rooted and illustrated. We do well to look for connections, meaning and guidance in the details of our past. But we tend to wait for milestones to make work of it. So it is with AACS/ICS Summer Conferences, which have emerged from their slumber in my psyche, to a place of prominence. The evidence now being gathered in a new website, square-inch.net, is intended to become a repository for artifacts – reports, pictures and anecdotes – collected from those who attended.
Just like going through family albums, it’ll be fun to catch a glimpse of our selves and of those we know in old stories and pics. And there will also be a touch of sadness seeing those stalwarts of our past who have passed on. But the main task will be to suss out the significance of all that gathering on the grounds of the annual Niagara Summer Conference.
You are invited to visit the website, nose around and remember, and then add your comments, greetings and even updates of where you are in God’s Kingdom, 30 – 50 years later, perhaps because of these AACS/ICS gatherings. Then dig out the old photo albums (I have three shelves full from my mother) and see if you have any photos of August long weekends from 1970 – 1991. Maybe you’ll even find some conference cassette tapes (remember those?). We would love it if you shared these archives.
Don’t worry too much about the mechanics of sharing. Even if you can’t scan the photos, we can find some way to get them to those who will. And then you can get them back, on the shelf or in the shoe box where they belonged. Just leave a note (with phone or email contact) on the Gallery page and we’ll get back to you to work out arrangements.