11.7.03

I can understand how Jon of Simple Green: Jekyl and Hyde feels. Life at times seems like treading on eggshells. I am able to forecast many responses but some situations call forth totally unforeseen responses to them.

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I have a problem
First of all a bit of background. The church I currently attend is actually a reincarnation of one I attended for several years until it basically fell apart after the pastor had an affair with one of those attending who was also a student of his at a tertiary institution. Nasty and messy. I went nowhere for several years except on odd occasions. I had been on the leadership team there, leading cells, teaching, training, taking Sunday School (yukk, not my scene at all,) and doing a lot of writing .

About eighteen months ago, I felt that I had to return there to close some matters etc. The people are lovely, the teaching non-existent, music ranges from excellent to appalling. There is good use made of the arts but sermons are mainly topical or the sort that says, "here's what I want to say. Can I find some scripture to agree with me." I do attend a cell group where we have communion regularly because we all feel the lack at church where we may well go 10 weeks without having it. The cell is actually led by someone who was in the cell I led in the original church.

Totally out of the blue, I was asked to lead communion some time in August. This is usually allocated to a cell who decide how it is to be done. Then I received an email asking me to preach at an evening service which we hold twice a month. I replied that although I have preached, I am a teacher by gifting and training. I was then asked to take a session "How to get the most out of the Bible." I suspect that these invitations have come because the pastor has been praying here with my husband before breakfast once a week. I think he has probably seen some of my theology books around the place. He actually hasn't said a thing to me about all this at all.

Now I receive a letter which has been sent to all leadership. It complains of the poor attendance at their last meeting and lays down some fairly legalistic expectations of this group. Why did I get this? I read on. There is a list of people on the leadership team, together with their functions. No one is minus a function. My name appears on the list and my function is denoted as "teacher." This is the very first I have seen or heard anything of this. Does this seem strange? It certainly does to me. I suddenly find myself on the team and no one has said anything to me about it. Seems odd to find out like this.

One of the expectations of leadership is that a leader totally supports the mission statement of the church which is to "impact Sydney with the Gospel." No explanation of the words. Now I happen to think that while that may be a good thing, it is a byproduct not a primary aim. My ideas of church are much more in line with many expressed in blogs around here. Community, growth, sharing, love etc. While I am not genx, my ideas fit in well with many of theirs. I also think that my idea of "Gospel" encompasses a much wider thing than what is meant in the statement.

I read further down the document. My husband's name was not on the list of leaders. However, at the end I find we can't have Judy without Punch. There is a paragraph tacked on at the end which included him on the team "because he is the state leader of another organisation."

I find all this very peculiar. I don't know what to think at all, except that in all good conscience I disagree with their mission statement. I'm not unused to leadership. I have held various roles nearly all my life, but I've never come across anything quite like this.


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For my Australian friends, a site from the ABC on Health Map - Health Matters. Where you live affects your health.

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10.7.03

I'm just beginning to surface again from a very bad cold. Head's still foggy, but I might try to do a bit of a catch up later.

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8.7.03

Twins die after marathon surgery. 08/07/2003. ABC News Online How sad.

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7.7.03

I'm back from my marathon babysitting effort. All went well and the baby slept all night. However, she has kindly passed on to me a very nasty cold and my head is fuzzy, to say the least. As I have to speak next week at a conference, I'm going to concentrate on getting better for a couple of days.

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