So since Monday night's meeting, I've had three different people directly or indirectly express frustration with some of the negative comments that were made. One of the women commented about a man who said he felt worship was lacking "a spark" and had become routine and boring, "I wanted to ask him what that said about his spiritual life." Another woman emailed a document she was working on and told me how much she'd appreciated my sermons recently.
I know we have a great deal of variety in worship. I know we try new things. I know that I work hard to vary the sermon style. I know that attendance is steadily increasing. I also know that different things speak to different people. Apparently what we are doing is not speaking to some people. I will continue to seek to change things up. Right now, my focus is getting through the next 3 sermons. In less than 3 weeks, I'll be on vacation. I will start by sleeping, probably for a good long time.
I also know that at the July meeting, I am going to ask the board to talk about the priorities for how I spend my time. Do they want me doing more pastoral care? Do they want me doing less reading? If I do less reading, do they understand that will have an impact on both sermon quality and the leadership education I do?
I have no idea where that conversation will go. I'm hoping that I will return from vacation with the energy to juggle more things. This week, in addition to the normal things, I'm meeting with a couple about getting married (they are both in their 80's-- a neat couple). I'm being asked to sign off on a number of publicity pieces for the new vision. I've needed to give feedback on the reworking of our website. At some point I'll need to write some new content for it, but that may need to wait until after vacation. I also have 2 end of the year dinners for the choirs. I'd like to skip the one tonight, but I know that would raise questions, so I'll go. I will probably leave early, though. I'm tired.