thread: 2006-08-31 : I think my expectations are screwed

On 2006-08-31, Vincent wrote:

Roger: > not having any kind of spiritual authority to call upon in any way

Can you expand a bit on what you mean here, Vincent?

Actually I guess I mean something kind of like tenure. Jon serves at the whim of his congregation - if he offends any given outspoken one of them, that one has the social and economic power to bring Jon totally to heel.

Now, on one hand, awesome. It is that way because of the UUs' admirable rejection of the abusable power imbalance between clergy and congregation that exists everywhere else. Yay UUs; the church I grew up in was absolutely rife with petty tyrants and bastards rising to positions of power, by sucking up to those higher still, and nothing that a mere congregation could do about it. The alternative to the UU arrangement ranges from ugly to horrific, that I've seen.

But on the other hand, what on earth is left for a minister then? You do your job on eggshells and with one hand tied back. If ministers have any role at all, it has to be - HAS TO BE - a role of authority with regard to their congregation's conscience. Jon's not allowed that; in preventing him from being a tyrant, they've made him an appendix.

Me personally? I'm like, so be it. Find a way without a minister. But they don't want that either, so round and round it goes...


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