with specific instructions about what I’m supposed to do. I’m just saying.
Yesterday, SH told me he has resigned as music director at G.A. That’s the church I started at 20+ years ago. The church the kids and X still go to and the place where “our” friends have become “his” friends. But it’s also a place with a new pastor, (2 years) who is experienced at community organizing, committed to praying and acting for justice as a way of proclaiming the gospel. It’s a church that is considering being a RIC (Reconciling in Christ – an association of Lutheran congregations that is public in it’s welcoming of all people.) It’s a congregation that is becoming a more multi-generational congregation. A congregation that has done foundational work for starting a choir/music-school as outreach for neighborhood families. A congregation that is already paying it’s PT (27 hours/week) cantor benefits. A congregation that is 4 blocks from my house (I could park the car and if I use grocery delivery service could not drive for possibly many days at a time!) But it’s also a congregation that I’ve been wounded by. A congregation that has people that might find it difficult to see me as a leader in addition to the broken person I am (that all church workers are, btw.)
Then, there’s Holden Village that is currently without a village musician. That would be a lifelong dream to serve there. That would be a 1 year comittment. Another “interim” that would really only delay this process for another year. And would require me to move 1500 miles away. Would require going back to court probably to amend the visitation/custody agreement. And besides the money would probably never fly. Would require that I sell the house (or give it over to X) for what do I do about a house with a mortgage and a $400/month stipend (although I would have medical and dental coverage) and an X husband and a dog?
Or there’s a church in Washington State (suburb of Seattle area) that is seeking a 3/4 musician and is a church that looks like it is praying and acting for justice in the public arena. An area that I’m spending a week visiting at the end of July. But again, would require moving 1500 miles, but it would/could be a permanent position (not a 1 year stint, like Holden). But there’s that X husband/children thing that I’ve been assuming means I can’t look outside the metro area.
I got a very nice response from the executive director of the St. Paul council of churches.
“I’m sad that I have to tell you that we are no longer receiving applications. We received 84 by the June 18th deadline. Your cover letter and resume look very good. I will keep your résumé in case we reopen the position, because no one we are now interviewing is hired. I look forward to meeting you when I visit [the church where I'm working]. I wish you the best.”
And a bit of a weasley response from the program director at the Minnesota council of churches (which only confirms my unease about the place and position that I told Sr. N about. I thought I wrote about that but damned if I can find the post. Oh well.)
“In quickly reviewing your resume, it appears that your work in social justice is strongly grounded, and well-articulated. And that there’s been a relatively recent (Aug 05 training with Gamaliel) understanding of faith-based community organizing, but probably a longer history of commitment to social justice issues that spawned participating in such an intense training process.
Organizing in the faith community is a relatively “tricky” endeavor, as you already must know. And doing it in the context of 24 member judicatories, within the Minnesota Council of Churches, adds a layer of accountability that most organizers can find cumbersome. The commitment to social justice at the Council isn’t reduced, but the processes and approaches that we use to pursue social justice may have a different look and feel, in large part because of that word “accountability.””
And my overall assessment of this process is that job searching and dating really are the same thing. And there’s a limit on the amount of rejection (based on personal or personnell characteristics) that one person can take at a time.