Sunday, August 29, 2010

Get Back in the Box

A strange wakefulness overcame me this morning. A colleague's irritating voice from the past telling someone on the phone, 'That's the best thing to do.' A line from a Faith Brothers song I've been singing since surfing, 'I shall be released come Sunday.' Other voices compete for attention, none of them saying anything much worth listening to.

On Sunday mornings in the early hours my sub-conscious stretches into action and demands its chance to be a naughty boy. 'Go on, go on,' it says 'Skive church, You know you want to.'

Thing is, I don't think I want to. But I miss the opportunity to decide to go rather than have to.

Today is light. I am being a musician and a notice giver in one service. Volunteers are working harder than me. But if it wasn't for this one lovely, all-age act of Christian worship I would have had a six day mini-break. And it is not simply a matter of pitching up, playing and scarpering. When you're the vicar you have to be ready to be the vicar, even if you're just the piano player.

You will be asked about a forthcoming funeral, the programme for home groups this autumn, the coffee rotas, the delay in the youth workers appointment, and something you haven't anticipated. Newcomers may be in church and the usually brilliant meeters and greeters may miss them.

Which is why, although there is not much preparation to do, I am up early thinking and praying my way into the day and trying to tell myself to enjoy it and doubting my own ability. The charisma dial goes up to eleven, still. But it's a bit stiff today. Been nearly twenty six years now. Doesn't get any easier.


Anonymous said...

In the vocational world of the clergy, isn't going to church one of the things you actually get paid to do?

Take some comfort in the fact that you only feel like this one day a week.

There are poor sods who feel like that five, six or even seven mornings a week.

Stop moaning. You have it good.

jw said...

'Skive church, You know you want to.'

And you nearly got away with it...

St said...

Hi anonymous friend. Thanks for the kick. Never said I only feel like this once a week. And, point of information, clergy don't get paid for doing anything. We get paid to save us having to earn our living. Cool eh?

Jo Lockyer said...

I totally identify with your blog post, Steve. As a 'Church Co-ordinator' (a what?) instead of a Vicar I often didn't have any official duties, other than being the person everyone glared at when it was too cold, or too hot, or both. Still, being a church employee in any situation is a lot tougher than people think unless they've done it. I often left church feeling like I wanted to kill someone - surely, not the point? Now I attend a church for which I am not responsible for, which is bliss. Also, I encourage and don't glare at the people who are responsible. You do a good job, keep it up! :-)