Saturday, July 03, 2010

Ready to go

The holidays are over and it's back to seminary on Monday. I am in a far better psychological and emotional space than I have been all year.
I am starting to recover from the fairly difficult phase 1 year - the separation from family and immersion in a different culture.
I am starting to come to terms with the fact that I won't be a minister for another eighteen months at least. I think that this is one of the more difficult areas of adjustment. I went from a lay person to being a minister in a strange cross-cultural environment to being a seminarian. I anticipated it to some extent, but I don't think I really managed it well.
I hope that I now have a handle on what these two years of seminary could mean - and it is much more useful and meaningful than I anticipated - although I think in unexpected directions. (We will see how this pans out!)
So, although aware of the potential for unexpected obstacles, I'm looking forward to the rest of the year.


Steve Hayes said...

I've been following your experiences with some interest because it is a method of training for ministry that I was advocating 30 years ago. Back then there was a tendency to take anyone who felt called to ministry and pack them off to seminary at the first opportunity. Often their experience of Christian ministry was limited to one congregation in one place, and in those days of apartheid often a monocultural one at that. So what they learnt in seminary they pictured applying in the one congregation that they knew, and if they couldn't see how it applied, they either went all academic, or else they regarded the training as "irrelevant". A Congregationalist friend of mine said that we should rather give ministry candidates a set of vouchers, redeemable at any seminary of their choice over the next 20 years, in 3-month units. And if they were in a ministry situation that required, say, pastoral counselling to white yuppies, they could pick the seminary that seemed to offer the best course on that.

Jenny Hillebrand said...

Hi Steve - it looks like the Methodist Church is back on the seminary route! I wish I had written down my thoughts as to how training should be done at different stages of my journey. I'm sure my thoughts have changed radically!