Today I am at a Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) clergy conversation – I came last year for a day and an overnight but felt I did not have much to add to the conversation though we are talking about church leadership. Last week, I spent three days at the Hotel Hershey, a United Church of Christ clergy convocation. It was structured differently, focusing (again) on church leadership. I was pretty quiet.
Since last year, I have become more informed and have formed more opinions about the churches in this area, but still don’t feel that I have much to offer. This is mostly because I am not connected to the broader church leadership. I know it is critical to have this leadership. Locally, I appreciate that the denominations are gate-keepers and responsibly hold all of those recognized by the church to a high standard. I also appreciate a national presence and those who are active participants and leaders who take us to the United States boarders and beyond. However, in my role as local church planter and pastor, I am so busy finding people to stick their toes into our worship space, that the national/conference/region business is too much to add to my daily life.
When I go home I will preach on some of my learnings from the past two weeks and will be more diligent about informing my congregation members about their larger church. I will offer them an opportunity to take a leadership role and encourage their efforts that will (ultimately) benefit more people. We are fortunate that both denominations encourage – really depend upon - lay participation and leadership.
Until then, while I am here, I try to remember that I have two eyes two ears one mouth and use each in the same proportion. I guess that means that I should only say about 20% of what I think. Some would say that is positive.