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Our most recent family pic with only Andrew missing

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Ministers: Some of us move too often, others not often enough.

Well, time to think more seriously about this whole itinerating thing (see my earlier post on the subject)seeing as we have now received a tentative date for our move from Joint Methodist Removals. Probably time to try and get hold of some boxes so that when they arrive on Monday 6 December, they can actually move us.

As I reflect on my whole life in the Methodist Church, it occurs to me that some ministers move too often, while others don't move often enough. Some don't stay long enough and others stay too long. I'm not sure we get it right as often as we should, which is quite strange, bearing in mind that we are a people primarily(hopefully) under the guidance of God. I'm not sure our training even tries to equip us to set objectives for our ministry in a particular place, let alone measure/assess our progress towards achieving those objectives. [The North Alabama Conference in the US seems to have something in place to measure efficacy of ministers and suitability in appointments, but I'll blog on that at a later stage].

John Wesley had some firm views on itinerancy, but they were obviously in a quite different context and need to be read accordingly:

"Were I myself to preach one whole year in one place, I should preach both myself and most of my congregation to sleep."(1)

"The preachers must change regularly; it would never do to let one man(sic) sit down for six months with a small society."(2)

Well, it's time to seriously consider acquiring some boxes.

References
1.The Works of John Wesley, Bicentennial Edition, Volume 1, page 16 note 11
2.The Works of John Wesley, Bicentennial Edition, Volume 1, page 16 note 12

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