For the next while I would like to talk about clergy peer learning groups, something we are currently promoting within Shining Waters. This is my first time trying to write a blog so bear with me! I began ministry in Newfoundland. There were so many good relationships to be had with the people of that four-point pastoral charge. But I remember being so clear within myself that I needed my friends who served other pastoral charges, some many hours away. I didn’t think twice driving three hours to be with those ministers mainly because the role meant there was a necessary distance with the people I served on Random Island. And when I was with those ministers whom I loved and with whom I felt safe, I was able to move from being a person with a role, to a person who could share my soul.
I remember Dale. Dale served a church in Gander. Dale took a bunch of us new ministers under his wing. He had been in ministry for about 10 years at that time. Dale talked with us about money and looking to the future. He told us that the pension was never going to support us when we got to retirement age. “Just a few dollars a month – start now,” he’d say. I can’t say I did very well with his advice except that we all learned from Dale. He cared enough to try to help us out. I would never have considered how I would steward the money that came into our household without Dale.
That for me is part of the beauty of clergy peer learning groups – a place to step away from our roles and share life with people who understand.
Until next time, please have a look at the Clergy Peer Learning Group program. Think about a friend and colleagues you’d like to gather with to step away from your role and share from a soul-ful place.