Thursday, November 29, 2007
It is true that one of the trials of ministry is helping the institution as a whole proceed in balanced and healthy programming, and not letting tails wag dogs. For instance, here in New Mexico, where the issues of racial and cultural tension are not black and white and related to slavery, but are multi-hued and related to immigration, water rights, land grants, reservations, tribes, and other complexities. We've never done anti-racism training; it's just not culturally appropriate here. Sometimes people have been angry about that. (Not that I forbade it, you understand, I just didn't do it myself, and neither did anyone else.) There are those who would make a minister feel like a bad girl for this...that's a part of the pain. In spite of this fact, I would remark, that we have a notably multi-ethnic congregation. The reason might surprise you. We have lots of young adults. Multi-ethnic comes naturally to young adults. They've had it all their lives. When they bring their friends to church, they bring a rainbow with them. As to how we attracted the young adults, well...they are a pure gift. We watched for them, tried not to repel them, and helped them get organized so they were visible to each other and able to organize themselves.