Thursday, April 21, 2011

un-holy week

It's holy week and that means crunch time. With Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and 2 services on Sunday, it gets a little crazy. Plus somewhere in there I have to dye eggs with the kids and get the Easter baskets ready (yeah, the easter bunny comes to the pastor's house... what of it?)
Thankfully, the duties of three of those 4 services are shared. Still, it is a lot to have to be prepared for. I find being "on" in front of so many folks very emotionally and physically draining. Even as an extrovert. Still, I have been known to have some rather un-holy thoughts about holy week. Wishing it were over, shorter, fewer events.

Might I just add that having spring break this week... doesn't. help. one. bit.

Ok, so I've got all that off my chest. What's really been on my mind lately is all the back and forth energy going on in the church right now. The session has lots of positive stuff going on--they're really on board with some changes that need to be made, yet they let themselves get all in a dither about what the congregation will say. Ok, I know we want to be transparent and maybe even compassionate in our change-making processes. But when we let ourselves get all worked up about what people will say and think and will that make them stop giving... well, being enthusiastic about changes is great, but not if you can't follow up on them for fear of what other people will do.
It's a bizarre dicotome. At the last session meeting, everyone on the session was convinced and excited that we did in fact need to hire a part time admin. asst. Not just for me, but for all the leadership in the church, as a way to take the busy work off our hands so that the leadership can focus on the leading part of their work. The motion to hire was on the table. Then came the discussion. People began to fret about how we present this idea to the congregation, aware that money is a huge pink elephant in our church. And how, of course, the ones who are the most vocal, negatively, about spending are the ones who don't tithe and won't up their pledges from what they started with 30 years ago. But I digress. So we talked round and round and finally tabled the motion. Basically, we got nowhere. Yes, the session thinks it's a great idea, but how do we convince everyone else? They'll say it's already getting done, so why pay someone else to do it? (BTW, *I'm* the current secretary--this is not working out well in many regards)
It's going to test my patience, I have no doubt. I think it will get done, maybe even in this calendar year, but not by much.
So let's just say that that whole big presentation on risk taking that we heard at the last retreat--yeah, maybe it's time to pull that back out again.

Monday, April 04, 2011

keeping it real

My real thought for today is that I'm ready for lent and easter to be over. It sorta ruins my spring. yeah, really. I know, that's not a nice thing to say, but it's at least partly true. I wind up getting so overwhelmed with both church and home responsibilities that it just saps me. This year hasn't been as bad since we're doing things just a little differently at church, celebrating the Six Great Ends of the Church, one each Sunday in Lent. We've gotten a set of banners and are dedicating one each week. They are just beautiful and really make the space come alive.
I questioned the idea of adding color during lent, since usually it's a time of well, I'll just say it, deprivation and denial. But really, Lent is meant to be a time of preparation for easter. Sure, the meatless fridays and goodie-less six weeks have become the hallmark of the season, but seriously, I just don't see how that helps most people. It seems mostly empty to me in most instances.
I think that this series has indeed helped us to prepare ourselves for Easter. I think having joy during Lent, if it's correctly directed, can be a great tool.