Friday, January 19, 2007


A tough week. Some sort of sinus crud, but I have, I believe, held it at bay by drinking fluids non-stop (to my classmates' amusement, I would show up with a big cup of coffee and a can of soda or bottle of water and sip away). Excellent classes; I think this will be the quarter I hate to finish, because I would love to have time to just keep studying.

Have learned in theology lecture that Karl Barth had a mistress whom he took everywhere. Not unlike Carl Jung and some of his followers, even up until now. What is it with these Swiss men and their wives and their mistresses??? Entitlement everywhere it seems.

In deep discernment struggle. Re-evaluating denominational affiliation. While a "congregational" polity, which allows for each local church in a denomination or fellowship to be quite different in character, can be immensely liberating, it can also allow for real problems at the local level--conflicts or patterns of behavior that are damaging to clergy, congregation, or both. I have seen some examples recently that have troubled me deeply. I have also seen some direct communications from the denomination that have expressed one message, while indirect communications express something quite different, in ways that make it tough to impossible to comprehend what the denomination actually stands for. Also, I find that as my own standpoints become more clear, I am in opposition in some key ways to some positions, at least at the local level.

So it is a tough time. There is so much that is so good about this church, but there are some areas of unclarity. How to weigh all of that and come out with an overall picture--my professors have suggested some questions to ask, but ultimate decisions are mine. Prayers appreciated.

It remains cold. Wilson Wolfhound adores the cold; for him, nothing is a better than a long walk with a lot of good smells AND new people to meet, in the cold. This, he says, is how it should always be!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

As someone who's had discernment struggles of her own, I can relate to this. However, there isn't a church on the planet without places of unclarity. I'm in a hierarchical, top-down church, and I've had the same problems you're describing. So I don't think the issue is church structure. The issue is human institutions, which will never be perfect or entirely live up to their own PR.

9:28 AM  

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