Sunday, August 30, 2015

some good news.

We have had an interim pastor for the past better part of a year. We knew he couldn't stay permanently, and he had set a fixed deadline (today) to urge us to find someone permanent.

I knew the committee whose job this was had been working on it. Well, today, the Board Moderator got up in church to announce that they had extended an offer and it had been accepted - so in a couple more weeks, we will have a new permanent pastor.

I am very happy about this. One of the things that had been eating at me these past weeks was, "What if no one is willing to come for what we can afford to pay? What if all the candidates look at how small we are and go, 'No, I can't.'"

There's been a lot of discussion about "What would we do in the future?" We can't limp along on calling in favors or tapping retired ministers in the area. There was even some discussion of "where would we go if we had to close down?"

There are other Disciples churches in the area but I think the nearest is a half-hour away, and I admit driving an hour's round trip every week is something that would be unappealing to me. There was also talk of a group of us joining another congregation in town - maybe the Methodists - but I know there are doctrinal differences, and also, most Protestant denominations don't do one thing we do that's very important to me and I would miss: doing the Lord's Supper weekly.

So it's nice, from a stability-in-my-life standpoint, to know this. And it's hopeful for the future. The congregation here is very important to me - perhaps moreso to me because I'm single and live alone. They are really kind of a second family to me and are the ones I call on in emergencies for help. And yes, a new congregation would present those same sort of things, but the whole idea of having to go to a new place and make new friends and fit in all over again and all of that....

I don't deal well with instability. There's some at work - heck, if you're employed in higher ed anywhere in the US, there's instability, with all the talk of a higher-ed bubble. I have some days when I wonder if I will still have a job in a few years because of all the stuff that's going on. So having instability in two big areas of my life is difficult.

We had a lunch (hence the cupcakes). I think the interim had some "parting words of wisdom" for a number of me, he did that funny hug-from-the-side men will do to non-related females (to avoid any appearance of inappropriateness) and told me that I was "quiet but strong."

It's funny, I wouldn't use those words to describe myself if I had been asked, but now that he said it, I can kind of see it. Not to brag on myself, but yeah, I do tend to kind of keep my mouth shut about a lot and just keep working. And I've learned, I think, how to guide people without being very verbose or pushy about it.

I don't think of myself as particularly strong, but maybe I am. Or even if I'm not all the time, thinking of myself as such may push me to be stronger....

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