Clergy will tell you that there is no such thing. There is no such thing as the perfect church. I found myself telling my father this the other night. And now, I wonder, is it true?
Earlier this week, I was offered a call. In church language, this means that I was offered a job. It's a big deal and I'm flabbergasted in many ways. I thought that this adorable church was calling to interview me with a couple more questions. But, the two questions that they wanted to ask were straight out of the UCC Manual on Ministry in offering a call (job) to a minister. Holy cow. I stared at the phone in disbelief.
And then, I asked for two weeks to discern. We talk about discernment a lot in church talk. We discern what God is doing. We discern where God is leading us. We discern where we feel God is leading us (which can sometimes be different). And we discern what we want. People, I want a perfect church. I don't know what that will look like. But, I want one. My father started to tell me about the concerns that I had listed in being called as the Associate Pastor at this congregation. And I shook my head and grimaced.
"Yeah Dad, but..." But before I could continue, he told me that he didn't think that I wanted this job. Hmmmm. I don't often agree with things that my father says. And this one was automatic. "But, Dad there is no such thing as the perfect church. Every church has problems. I'm going to be concerned no matter where I go."
And this is true. But, the concerns are all mine. It has nothing to do with the church. The Search Committee may be reading this now. Hi Search Committee! And if you are reading this, I want you to know that you are a wonderful church. And they are. They are an adorable church that feels like a family. It feels right. But, as I seek to realize my professional career and become an adult, I want to be certain. So, I have to ask about the possibility of the perfect church and wonder what might be missing. That is, if anything is missing.