Wednesday, August 02, 2006
How do you say, "Good Bye?"
In seminary,they never teach you how to leave a congregation.
What do you say when you know you will be gone but the congregation continues on? Do I treat it like any other Sunday? Do i use it as a soapbox to advance "my cause?" Do I allow the congregation to be comfortable, hoping they will remember me in a good light? Do I challenge them?
I want to challenge them. I want to empower them to take action in their world. Even if they go against my soapbox cause,
I want them to put feet to their conviction. I don't believe my leaving is a "non-event" in this congregation, but I don't want to blow it all out of proportion either.
I was practicing a solo that I hope to do on Aug. 13. This will be my last Sunday and I hope to make the song a gift. But I will tell you; it is getting harder and harder to practice. The song is a version of the "Our Father" but it is not the traditional one most are used to. Heaven forbid I do the "common" one. But I finish running through it and I have to take a fifteen-minute break to wipe my eyes and re-gather myself.
I feel my leaving is wrong on so many levels. One person here said that she was angry that I would even have to write such a letter. No one else has to write a letter such as that. I agree. In effect, I lost my job because of my sexuality. It had nothing to do with my job performance.
I know, I chose to leave.
Should I have stayed and fought? I think if my senior pastor would have said, "This is wrong and we are not going to stand for it" I probably would have chosen to stay. But he didn't. So, if my colleague will not side with me, why should I stay.
Granted, the senior pastor has gotten better, but he still is not strong enough to lead a battle that may get a little messy. Messy does not work in his world.
I don't want to do this sermon this Sunday. I want this all to just go away.
I know. I'm whining.