The church I attend is going through a transition of the most unnerving kind.
Transition= looking for a new priest to take over the helm.
Our Rector of 25+ years retired.
The process involves the Vestry, the interim priest, the Finance Committee ,the Search Committee, Park Slope, Brooklyn USA and a dilapidated rectory in need of major remodeling. It also involves, the Bishop of the Diocese and his Canon-all must work together in the interest of the church and its ministries.
I am a member of this church, on the Altar Guild and once served as an LEM (Licensed Eucharistic Minister). I am also on the Vestry. The same Vestry that will soon receive my resignation letter. Hopefully someone who has more experience ‘playing in the sandbox’ with others (team player and head nodder) will sit in the empty chair.
This person will be:
-Someone who can weave in and out of the verbal obstacles, disagreements, rudeness, and get the job done.
-Someone who has patience to listen to rhetoric without seeing double after two minutes.
-Someone who tithes and sacrifices for the church-basically having a vocabulary where “no” is blasphemy.
-Someone who thinks as a whole for the greater good instead of the one.
-Someone who loves and cares about the future of this church more than how good we look on financial fiscal reports.
I am not a team player.
I prefer my own sandbox, with my organized grains of sand and my shovels, coordinated by size. I don’t like to clean up big piles of mess I didn’t make and usually don’t make my own big piles of mess to have to clean up to begin with.
Church politics and spirituality does not mix well for me.
It’s hard to play the game, be fake and smile while I would rather stare at you and throw imaginary lethal eye darts that turn to green ooze upon contact. Yes, it’s not the Christian thing to do. But, Christians do. We are not perfect no matter how hard we project to be.
In order to navigate through church politics while keeping spirituality in place one has to be malleable with a soft heart. Know when not to say hurtful things or at least think before saying the hurtful things (Oh yeah, the Four Agreements). Listen with reason, argue with love and never roll your eyes at someone as they look the other way.
What is difficult to be is why my resignation takes place.
I am not a team player.
But, with time and space, I may learn to play with one or two, definitely not three…maybe.
**photo from the web