Backstory: Recently spoke to a young person who is preparing for his first pastorate. He is moving to a small, struggling church with a difficult history. (Familiar scenario) He spoke of his desire to follow the typical advice of spending time getting to know the people before he makes any changes. I then suggested that he make sure not to view such a time as a passive exercise, but make sure to carefully listen to the heart cry of the people, and to frame the conversation in a particular way. If allowed, most folks want to bend the ear of the new pastor as to all the things that are wrong with the church, wrong with their fellow congregants, and especially wrong with the previous pastors. I encouraged him to ask them the stories of the best moments in the life of the church, the narrative of what they love and is meaningful about the faith community.
So, today I thought we could spend some time thinking about those moments in the faith communities of which we are a part.
What are the very best things about your church?
What are the best moments?