Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Explaining Word & Sacrament Ministry

The topic of Word and Sacrament ministry and what it means has come up directly and indirectly during my time at my new congregation (which I have decided to term Elijah in Egypt). My predecessor was particularly skilled at empowering the laity and at delegating responsibilities for the ministries of the congregation. While this has created a cadre of talented and responsible leaders, it has also caused me (and Elijah!) to reckon with the questions about the pastor's role.

I'm curious to know how you, my dear readers, would explain the call to Word & Sacrament ministry. Many members and leaders in my congregation are not particularly aware of this concept (which, I know, may seem puzzling to other pastors...welcome to my eclectic and intriguing congregation!). I have attempted to explain it but feel like I'm stuck a bit.

How would you explain the call to ordained ministry? The call to Word and Sacrament?

How would you answer the following questions/lines of feedback? I have my own ideas and replies but I don't want to cloud your feedback. Let me know your initial thoughts and we'll go from there...
  • But what about the "priesthood of all believers"? Aren't we all called?
  • Doesn't this create a hierarchy? Didn't Luther work to eliminate papal authority, etc? [side note: we're big into collaboration in Elijah]
  • It's our congregation...don't we get to decide ____________ (fill in the blank)?
As you answer, please keep in mind that my congregation is full of amazing, wonderful people. I'm not critiquing them in the least. I'm simply facing a situation where there's just not much buy in or understanding of Word and Sac. Help!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A bit of a brief update

So let's see...it's been over a year?! Much has happened in the last 14 months, including:
  • In July 2009, I accepted a call to an inner-city congregation in an actual city. Diversity! Traffic! Buildings taller than 3 stories! Cool congregation (haven't thought of a nickname for them yet)! This is such a good thing! It is a grown up call, complete with a grown up sanctuary and grown up responsibilities. It is simultaneously intriguing, exhausting, challenging, invigorating, and engaging.
  • We listed the Cute Gray House on Super Bowl Sunday 2010. We've had about 6 showings with no offers. Jerusalem was very hard hit by the economic downturn and there are far too many homes on the market. We're waiting, we're hoping.
  • Dad's estate, unfortunately, is still a problem. We were supposed to have a court date on May 6, which was shifted to June, and has now been moved once again to a date yet to be determined. Oy vey.
  • The family is doing great. My hubby continues to be a SAH Dad, and he keeps our lives running smoothly. Sony and Minky are doing great overall. I cannot believe Sony is finishing 8th grade and Minky is finishing 5th grade. What happened to my babies?!
Postscript...and how could I forget?! (Even though I did forget...and now just remembered to share) I was diagnosed with ADD. I can't remember the actual month or date but, wow, does my life make more sense now!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The blog has risen! It has risen indeed!

I have been pondering a return to the blog world for awhile. I need to write and have a creative outlet. For now, there are plenty of old posts you can read. Updates will follow soon. There's much to share since the last post, but alas...it is 9:30pm and I haven't had dinner yet. Must eat, then write.