Thursday, 22 July 2010

I've changed

I used to be a wallflower, watching everyone else. I was told by a good friend that I shouldn't go into the ministry (but I'm not sure of his views on women in the pulpit!) because I was more of a Barnabas - helping in the background.
But I followed my calling and after many years of helping in the background, I am now often to be found in the pulpit.

Ours is a small chapel with most members being OAPs, with very little in the way of facilities, so we are praying and thinking about how we can be Christ in the village.
The village has an active life based around the village hall. I've never been a social animal and going to regular women's meetings has never been my style but as the newly appointed minister, I thought I ought to join in.
So once a month I join others for an afternoon talk and recently went on their summer outing to Ludlow - beautiful but not the same as our bit of Wales. This annual outing attracts many others including the local vicars and others who take the day off from work thus filling a large coach.

Then there is the book club which I joined not only to broaden my reading matter but to meet other women, most of whom do still go out to work. And yes, I've read some good books that I would never have previously picked up.

And every Wednesday I join in the coffee morning - a mixed group of OAPs but mostly women. Our chapel lunchtime bible study follows this once a month and those who have looked at the notes start discussing the questions over coffee, along with others who don't go to church.
Yesterday the coffee morning group all went to a very nice hotel for lunch, and I was asked by non-church going folk to say grace, during which there were many giggles because I thanked God that we didn't have to do the washing-up - but let's be honest - isn't half the pleasure of eating out, the fact that we neither have to cook the meal or wash-up!

I've never had such an active social life and its been a wonderful opportunity to get to more people in the village. I'm a changed woman!

1 comment:

  1. One of the ongoing mysteries is how many of us minster types are actually shy intorverts called to a role that seems to demand confident extroverts. I'm not sure I've changed... I'm still shy and still like to hide away with my books... I've just found the ability to be what is needed when it'a needed. I think it's what one of my 90-seomthings calls 'enabling grace' or some such.