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Thursday, January 25, 2007
New Beginnings
Greetings! I am writing to introduce myself to the community and found it timely to read the post "Whozat New Kid" as I pondered my message. Yes, I am a "new kid on the blog"(oh that sounds goofy!), and to be honest, it causes me to wince a little. You see, lately, new beginnings have been a common theme in my life and I am weary of the plot that has developed. Most of the new beginnings have occurred on a succession of Sunday mornings as my husband and I have been searching for a new faith community. It isn’t that we haven’t ever belonged to a church family for we raised our children in the Presbyterian Church and later found ourselves in the Disciples of Christ denomination, where I explored my call to ministry. But we are yearning for more than we experienced in either congregation and have found it oh so difficult to find. One of the largest roadblocks on this journey has been the lack of hospitality offered by 99% of the churches we have visited. It doesn’t seem that difficult a concept to live out, but we have been truly saddened by the inability of others to accept the “new kids” in their midst. I think this is why I am so excited to connect with other women who appear to understand the essence of community and the power found within genuine welcome.
So, here I am. A woman who is surprised to find herself in the "middle years" of life with all the joys of grand parenting; a woman convinced of a meaningful call to ministry without an “official” place to offer it; a woman eager to connect with others on the journey. There is so much more to the story, but I think this is enough. For I believe this will be a good “new beginning” with plenty of opportunity to continue the conversation. Thanks for the welcome! Christy
 
posted by Christy at 8:13 PM ¤ Permalink ¤


5 Comments:


  • At 1/25/2007 09:19:00 PM, Blogger Jemila Monroe

    Hi Christy,

    Welcome! I empathize with the yearning for a real spiritual "home" where you can actually give and receive hugs and share everyday life and grow in the mystery of Life/Love/God with others. It never ceases to amaze me how superficial church relationships can be for everyone who isn't in the "in circle," whatever that may mean in a given community. I attend a psuedo-emerging church that is more modern than its pastor will admit, but in any event, I don't have close relationships with anyone there.

    If anyone's got a cool idea for inventing a transporter, we could have a pretty kickin' real-time community of EW families, me thinks :)

     
  • At 1/25/2007 10:22:00 PM, Blogger Michele L

    Hi Christy,
    Hope you make yourself comfy! I don't know what it is in churches, but I know that many times that is how people feel. I am on staff of my church and have been feeling like I really need to connect with more people. It's hard for me on Sunday's now because it is "work", but I will be helping start a "feminine perspectives" group, and am really looking forward to connecting more. We have had a lot of transition, and it's time for connection. I hope to help that along. Welcome again. M

     
  • At 1/25/2007 10:25:00 PM, Blogger Nancy

    Welcome, Christy. I too am on the hunt for a faith community that "fits" reasonably well. I am coming off a long stint in a contemporary evangelical faith community with megachurch aspirations. I see it as a parting of ways because I am looking more for a "microchurch" which for me would be a smallish group of people who want to connect deeply and authentically, do life together and worship regularly through acts of service of all sorts and maybe explore some alternative forms of "the hour on Sunday" where there is a corporate adoration and celebration of GOD and discussion of scripture. I live in a rather conservative area where the faith community I am leaving seems radical to most. So, it may have to be something I join with a few others to start, which already seems to be happening and looks like a "home church" for the time being.

    Meanwhile, this group here on EW has been a real source of encouragement, inspiration and comfort to me. I feel affirmed that I am not undiscerning/unfaithful/lacking truth/immature in my faith and whatever other label you want to throw in there that gets attached to your forehead when you start asking questions and wondering aloud if there isn't a "better" way...

    So, again, glad you are here and look forward to hearing more from you and what you have been learning on the journey.

     
  • At 1/27/2007 09:13:00 AM, Blogger anne

    Christy, greetings and welcome! I'd really like to hear more about what you experienced regarding (the lack of) hospitality in the churches you visited, as it's such an opportunity for us to learn from our mistakes. If you feel inspired to write more about your thoughts and experiences about that, I'd really appreciate hearing them.
    ~A.

     
  • At 1/27/2007 11:18:00 AM, Anonymous agma

    Some free-floating statistic in my brain says most visitors decide whether or not to return to a church within the first 10 minutes of their first visit (in other words, long before the sermon).

    I can't tell you how many churches I visited during my higher ed years and had the following experience: no one passed the peace with me unless I initiated it, while all around me people were hugging and running all over to greet their friends. That indicates why I experienced it at so many churches.

    But there's more to hospitality than shaking hands during passing the peace. A few months ago, someone said to me, "Well, she would be really good at that, but she's too new. She's only been here 5 years." I thought, well if that's the attitude, you're lucky she's still here!

     

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