Share a moment/ time of real encouragement in your journey of faith.
It happened a couple of weeks ago, when our assisting-minister team pow-wowed with our pastor at his home for a couple of hours, just talking about how we might take lay ministry to the next level in our community. Frankly, I have been so frustrated with my formal lay ministry program, so fuzzy about what the point of it all actually is and so distracted by other issues that I'd kind of put this sector of my life on a back burner -- way back. Being able to talk freely and being challenged to think ahead instead of ruminate on the present was very helpful.
Do you have a current vision / dream for your work/ family/ministry?
Well, I'll talk about ministry, since that's the general direction these questions seem to be headed. And you know, as far as ministry, I really don't have a specific vision. I mean, my pastor and I are talking about the Internet as a way to open up the walls of our church, so to speak, far beyond the boundaries of geography or even church affiliation, and that would be kind of fun to pursue. I enjoy doing what I'm doing now, as an assisting minister; would maybe like to do more of it. I did tell my pastor that what excites me is being able to do Christianity "at the margins," with people who have been alienated from Christianity by their past Christian experience. Maybe I could be...kind of an undercover pastor. A pastor without portfolio. A Friar Tuck to the religiously disaffected people whose paths cross mine. Somefin' like that.
Money is no object and so you will.....
Quit working for money and become a jack-of-all-trades church rat at my parish/professional volunteer elsewhere, doing things that interest me.
How do you see your way through the disappointments? What keeps you going?
I think that one of the big things that keeps me going is, interestingly, my experience of communal worship. I can be feeling very discouraged, ready to pack it all in, but then when I worship with others, pray with them, share the Eucharist with them -- it recharges my spiritual batteries. It may be the reminder that this isn't a solitary trip; that we're all in this thing together.
How important are your roots?
The other day I was thinking about my first experience of church: being a tiny little child, happy to be in church because it was such an interesting place, swinging my patent-leather-clad feet contentedly back and forth in the pew and -- much to the consternation of my parents -- applauding after each portion of the liturgy. An early warning sign, perhaps, of my future as a Church Lady, or unique permutation thereof. (And I know that this response really doesn't answer the question...but it's a good story. And it's true.)