Monday, April 27, 2009

Building a Mystery

(I always liked that song.)

To the one or two readers that may be reading my blog ... sorry. I've been busy.

This is the time of the year that the our United Methodist Conference powers-that-be demand an evaluation of its pastors. I don't mind being evaluated. It is a wonderful tool in opening discussions as to "what it is I exactly do." And really, it's a good thing - it holds me accountable.

However, it is the Clergy's Ministry Goals for the next 12 months second that drives me bonkers. It forces me to become far-sighted and look ahead. I'm a details person.

This mental and spiritual exercise of discernment has taken quite a lot of time. Such things do not happen overnight for me. I'm also a processor. And I try to listen closely to the Spirit.

My goals for the past 12 months have been:

1. Getting to know the CATC family and the area.
2. Starting a Pastor's Partners in Prayer
*Studying the book Pastor's Partners in Prayer by John Maxwell (New York: Thomas
Nelson. 1996)
*Using a weekly list generated by the pastor to pray for her, the church,
church meetings and programs and supportive prayer for concerns
*Meeting once a month for prayer and refocusing.
3. Listening to the comments, opinions, ideas and stories of the church family to
gain perspectives of pastoral leadership and direction of church ministries.
*In-home visitation of active members
*Active listening in meetings
4. Meeting monthly for the first six months with the SPPRC to share and address
ideas, concerns and expectations (church, SPPRC and pastoral expectations)
5. Working with the SPPRC Committee (and the inclusion of the Church Council Chair)
to develop a vision for the church.
*Core Value
*Mission Statement
*Scripture Verse
6. Discerning church leadership and spiritual gifts
7. Working on the church's infrastructure
*Asking board and committee members to commit to serve an additional year to
provide continuity for the church.
*Setting dates for regular meetings of each church board, committee and
ministry area (at least once a quarter)
*Providing training and education for board and committee responsibilities
8. And all the other stuff as per the 2008 Book of Discipline relating to pastoral duties and

So far, I'm on track with meeting these goals. You can add that I've started a Women's Bible Study and a Wednesday night book study; hostessed various opportunities for fellowship; and revamped worship.

My major goal for the next year is to continue building the church's infrastructure by starting a Leadership Team and selection of the right people to leadership positions. Phew.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

He is Risen!

He is risen indeed!

Love's redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids him rise, Alleluia!
Christ has opened paradise, Alleluia!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Things that Make You Go "HmmmHmmmHmmm"

  • You know, Elmer just might be able to be rehabilitated. I was right proud of him Tuesday night at the Church Council meeting and especially proud of him yesterday - he has a real gift for Senior Ministries. Yeah Elmer!!!! Pat on the back and a big hug, buddy!!!!!

  • Speaking about Church Council? Yeah, Mr. Boy Scouts Leader was there. When the Powers-That-Be had my back, he decided to make it ALL the church's fault because we hold their Charter, but haven't provided the necessary leadership as per our Sponsor Status. OK, dude - Do you really want me to tell you guys what you need to be doing to recruit new Scouts? Yeah - What will work in the church can be tweaked to other volunteer organizations. My best advice: Get off your bums and evangelize, er - recruit - new members and once you get them DELIVER THE GOODS YOU'VE PROMISED THEM. Just because the doors are open, I mean, just because there is a Small Town Boy Scout Troop does NOT mean they will be beating down the doors to get in. Sheesh.

  • Heard from the "Boy Scout Council." Ooooooh, big threat! They just thanked us for showing hospitality to not ONE, but TWO Scout Troops. "Thanks and keep up the good work!" Snerk.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Damn, damn, damn.

Monday, April 6, 2009

So I Didn't Win the Award Today


Mr. Boy Scout Leader called today and wanted to know if I told the "other" Boy Scout troop to drop their plans for a fundraiser breakfast to be held at Church Around the Corner.

Ahem. I told him that after having polled the Church Powers-that-Be, we had no problem with letting the church members who are part of that Boy Scout troop use the church for their breakfast.

Mr. Boy Scout Leader expressed his displeasure and disappointment that "we" weren't going to support our church's own troop. I asked if they had planned on using the church on that particular day. He replied, "No." I asked if they had any plans for using the church other than on their regularly scheduled night. Again no. I asked if the troop had anyone besides him and Mr. Other Leader Who Doesn't Come to Church that were church members or regular attenders. Again, "No."

I told him the church was not getting involved Boy Scout business. He said we'd be hearing from their Powers-That-Be. Sigh. OK. Whatever.

Lord, have mercy. The Boy Scouts.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The Final Countdown

I've been busy with the usual Lenten/Easter stuff. I will be thankful when all that stuff is over and I can catch my breath.

Our Book Study on The Shack and our Thursday night Women's Bible Study are being well attended. Lots of good stuff going on there.

Lost my temper with Elmer, the LayLeader at last week's Finance Committee meeting when he called the less affluent church family members "freeloaders." I was so angry, I had to go get a breath of fresh air before I confronted him for the eleventy hundreth time.

I remembered why I don't like to sing in the choir. I'm not a soprano. I'm an alto and I'm really sorry if we have a gazillion altos and no strong sopranos. I cannot hit the high notes without screeching.

The church sponsored Boy Scout Troop leaders are trying to dictate to me who can use the church's Social Hall and who cannot. Duhr. The church holds your charter. My advice is don't bite the hand that gives you free access to the building. It's a freakin' pissin' match.

And I have to go for some medical tests after seeing my PCP and a neurologist. Both of them are thinking the new kind of headaches I've recently developed are not migraines.

But, today is Palm Sunday and Church Around the Corner is taking in seven new members!!!!

And today is Daughter #2's 28th birthday and she's coming for dinner and presents! YEAH!!!!!