Monday, October 25, 2004

An Emo Installment: And I Don't Think I'll Miss Her at All

Fall Break has come and gone, but I think I made the most of it. I visited the folks at Vineyard Central this weekend; I feel pretty encouraged in terms of my discernment. There are indeed folks in the last couple of generations who are actively discerning what faithfulness to the Gospel means in terms of their ecclesiology and common life. It’s probably arrogant of me, but I was starting to think it was just me and a handful of friends. The gathering at La Roca a few weeks ago was good for that, as well.

Reading the first thirty pages of the Windsor Report as well as Mission Shaped Church from the Church of England has reminded me that mission and a catholic, missional, sacramental ecclesiology just might be in the Anglican DNA. This in spite of what I’m experiencing with rank and file Episcopalians. Maybe they’re mutants?

I showed my face at "church" for the last time yesterday. I had been growing tired of trying to make friends in a group of people with whom I couldn’t sustain a conversation of more than two minutes. I didn’t care about receiving the Eucharist or the music, (consuming or producing religious goods and services), but was only there to make friends with people. Three months of laborious coffee drinking later, and I still have to nearly pounce on people to have a quick, superficial conversation. Of course, it might just be my age, or values, or personality. I wear some pretty bright shirts, for example, and Jeremy (my roommate, the house god of snappy banter and fun times) says that they can be intimidating.

To say nothing of what I saw in vestry meetings. I’ve alluded to that before, so I’ll leave it be.

If a church ever tells you they’re a friendly bunch, know that they’re lying. Ask somebody who’s visited their house, instead.

I’m trying to drop angry language though. The whole thing just hurts, y’know?

I feel like I’ve broken up with a girl, from an odd kind of relationship in which the idea of romance was nice, but neither one of us was really into it. Or more like it, I just had a crush that was in no way reciprocated. Why keep crushing? What did I want to get out of it? I mean, anybody could have said she wasn’t my type.

What was the point of that little experiment? I don’t know. I’ll think about it and get back to you.


+ Alan said...

Ah, there's always a point in these little experiments - even if it's more about learning "what not" than "what." You know you're not alone in this new journey man. Peace and Grace to you.

New Life said...

Hey bro,

Is it the EC that is turning you off? I really enjoyed your post. I find myself wondering every day what I am doing. :) I am in my last year of seminary, getting ready for the GOE's and wondering what in the world I am doing in this institution.

Peace... and thanks for sharing.


Kyle said...

Thanks for the encouragement, guys.

Actually, Rick, that's something that bugs me. I'm not bummed out by an overarching institution, but the men and women that I can see and touch and attempt to look in the eye. They don't meet my gaze for very long. It's about the people themselves, either good or bad, and not about the statements of big dumb prelates or even the smart ones.

Not a question of "these are nice people, but I can't be in a church with them," but rather, "I can't even have a cup of coffee with them (and no longer wish to), so why am I sharing the Eucharist with them?"

I said, "Kyle, it's about the people." And that it is, may God have mercy on us all.

The Archer of the Forest said...

Don't give up the ordaination track, man. The church needs as many solid people as possible, especially these days. I, of course, can't speak for you, but I always find myself asking God why he has sent me to the ECUSA, but I keep getting back a clear message. I am where I need to be. Hope it is the same for you...

Grace and Peace...