Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Sunday mornings

Sunday mornings are an adrenaline rush for me. I don't know whether to look forward to them or run and hide (for anyone who hasn't guessed--I am an introvert). I love the energy and possibilities for Sunday morning, but I also think about how drained I am when I get into my car and go home at about 12:30pm. For any congregation, Sunday mornings are foundational for community life--Christ is proclaimed, people connect, wisdom is shared, opportunities are realized, needs are met. I don't know how you feel on Sunday morning, but this has been my life about 85 percent of Sundays since I was ordained in 1998.

I remember in my first year of ministry that I was particularly anxious about Sunday mornings and all that goes on. A mentor told me that for many people, this is their only time to connect for the entire week, and that I can look at Sunday with dread and have it affect the entire day, or see it as an opportunity to connect. Hmmm.

I have learned to see Sunday as an opportunity to connect. What enabled me to do that was to not attempt to remember all the details that are shared with me before and after worship services. If people make a request, share with me a detail, or give me some information, I thank people for connecting with me, but let them know, "I can't be responsible for any detail that is shared with me on Sunday morning. Please leave me an email, a voice mail, a note in my mailbox, stop by the office this week." That has seemed to work well--and I can communicate that what is being shared with me is valuable and important--and my Sundays have become just peaceful enough that I can look forward to sharing a laugh or a prayer concern on Sunday morning.

1 comment:

  1. Pastor Joe, glad you shared the warning about Sunday morning connections. As a reminder: John Crossan will be at in October, I don't know if you have read any of his books or attended any of his lectures, but he is a very insightful theologian. It is a rare event to get someone of his stature in Seattle, and several folks from the congregation are planning on attending.