August 01, 2023
“Well, now that the disaffiliation vote is done, the anxiety will subside and we can get on with the real work of the church.” So said a respected clergy colleague. But I had to respectfully disagree. The anxiety is still in the system!
Just because a couple divorces, it doesn’t mean that the anxiety that brought about the divorce goes away. The couple still feel it, the children feel lit, the extended family feel it, even friends feel it. It is the same in the church family.
Divorce, disaffiliation, is just “content.” Addressing the stress, angst, and anxiety is “emotional process.” And if that emotional process is not understood, appreciated, and respected, you, as leader, get sabotaged. Learning how to address this sabotage “is the key to the kingdom,” writes Rabbi Edwin Friedman.*
That is what the Center for Pastoral Effectiveness was created to assist clergy in doing almost 25 years ago. It is the vision of the Center that you, as pastor, can come to appreciate this emotional process within your own family of origin, the families in your church, as well as, the family of your church, and how they all interlock. And then, hopefully, not to be a victim of it. Even more importantly, how not to make your family a victim of it!
This may be the most important time to consider joining one of the new Center Tracks. Over 1,300 of your colleagues are Center alum. If you want to talk to one of them, let me know. I will connect you.
The next Track l Center starts November 1-3 in Colorado. A new Track ll begins in March, a Track lll and Track lll -3M in January. Space is limited in each of them.
I guarantee that you will value this journey.
For information check out pastoraleffectiveness.org.
To registers contact, Rev. Bill Selby, email@example.com, 303-521-3850
*P 11, Failure of Nerve, Edwin Friedman