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Friday, October 14, 2011

Mutual Ministry Review

I'm on the road this week. I'm heading up to Boston this morning where I'll be working with the Wardens, Vestry, rector and staff of a small church there on a Mutual Ministry Review.

Then, it's back to NJ to preach on Sunday afternoon for a former seminarian of mine who is celebrating, with his congregation, his presence among them as their "Priest-In-Charge". I heard the term "Covenant Priest" as a replacement term for PIC. Both still sound awkward to my ears. I think I err on the side of Vicar, but I digress.

I'm hanging around for some more tests as a result of my Annual Physical stuff done last month, and then I spend the 25th Anniversary of my priestly ordination with the folks at Occupy Wall Street - if they're still allowed to be there. I can't imagine a better way to mark that anniversary.

Leading a Mutual Ministry Review is also a good way to begin the observation of so many years of ordained ministry.

It's just what it says it is:
Mutual, as in shared.
Ministry, as in the work we do for Jesus
Review, as in looking over and backward before moving forward.
We've actually started this Mutual Ministry Review months ago. The Wardens and Vestry have been gathering information and interviewing parishioners. Then, tonight and all day tomorrow, we'll review all the information, celebrate achievements, note what has been "left undone" and why, and then begin to develop goals for the next year.

Which actually begins the Mutual Ministry Review for next year.

Which is the point.

It then give people an opportunity to evaluate the performance of the rector and staff as well as assess the role of the Wardens and Vestry.

It's really about vigilance and persistence. I like to think of it as being similar to the way we tend a vineyard or a garden. If you want good grapes or vegetables, you can't just go to the place where things have been planted and expect to simply pluck grapes off the vine or pluck veggies from the ground. The soil needs to be tilled and nourished, weeds need to be pulled and vines pruned, and the wise gardener or vine dresser always prepares for the frost of winter.

Ministry is no different. We are all working in the Vineyard of the Lord, until we get back to The Garden once again.

So, off I go, then. Depending on the availability of Wifi on Amtrak, I may not be able to post again until late Saturday.

Don't mess with too much of my stuff while I'm gone.

And, would someone feed the fish? Thanks.

1 comment:

Lindy said...

I scrolled down and fed the fish for you. They were really hungry too. But if anything is out of place, it wasn't me. Kay?