Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Been on my mind

I’ve been struggling lately with can I be me and still be a priest? Of the priests I’ve seen there’s a genuine concern for others, but there’s also this distance. Is it just them? Is it protective to self? And I can’t help but think that isn’t me. That that is not what so many people need. They need someone to walk with them in their very personal pain/love/grief/life. To not be afraid to embrace them and hold them. And that image keeps calling to me. But it feels so conflicted with what I see.


Lee said...

Morning JS,
I agree with you. There is and can be a distance. I'm wondering how many priests you've included in your view? Are most of the priests you viewed men? Do women priests come across the same way?

There has been one priest visit our church recently that I didn't think had that feel. That was Sam Todd. Call me crazy but he had that cuddly teddy bear feel. I'd have had no problem opening up to him.

I wonder how Newell, coming from another culture, will come across tonight. Are you going to the Celtic Mass? Or is that too late for you and the kids?


jsd said...

The one's I've met thus far - to include women and men.

No I won't be going tonight.

San said...

I'm not Episcopal, but I had a friend back in the 70s who was; she felt called to the priesthood. She felt that she wanted that closer, more human relationship with people too. For one thing, she wanted to share her own doubts and fears, but an older priest (male) said, "No, we have to be strong. We're examples." I lost touch with her. Years later I discovered she'd joined the Presbyterians and had had a long career leading various churches. She used to publish her sermons online, and yes, I saw that she shared her human-ness in her sermons.

Not telling you to join the Presbyterians, just to keep listening to the call and finding your way. You're the only one who can find that. It's yours for the finding.

2 cents from an on-again, off-again attendee of the United Church of Christ.

Barbi Click said...

can you be less than what you are...than how God created you and be a priest? I don't think so...

jsd said...

san: thank you for sharing your story with me.

barbi click: no i don't think one can be less then what they are and still be a good preist. these last two posts allude to events that have happened and that i'm still processing.

I hesitated in even posting them and nearly deleted them, but it was on my mind and for whatever reason I put these thoughts out there.

So ultimately I will always be me, for better or worse :-)

The people in my congregation want me for me, not some image, not some pretense. And that is what I need to remember when "others" send me a message inconsistent with my core self.