“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.” George Orwell

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

"The ministry is already full"

I heard an interesting, true story the other day. A person was being interviewed for a position as an assistant to a ministry to persons with disabilities at a local church. In the midst of the interview, the person from the church doing the interview asked something to the effect, "Why does that ministry need to grow. The ministry is already full."

Now this comment is interesting and appalling from a variety of perspectives. How does one know when one's ministry is full? A room might be full or a theatre might be full, but what constitutes a full ministry? Are all the people who might be served already being served? That would be great if it were true. What if we were talking about children. "Don't bring your children to church, our ministry is full." Or High School students..."We will no longer be allowing you to bring visitors to the High School program because that ministry is full." Can you imagine, if the church was doing a ministry to a particular ethnic group, and the comment was made, "That ministry is full." In other words, we have enough of those people down here. "Our ministry to white Irish people is full (I'm Irish)." "We don't need anymore Irish people down here." I would never be allowed to get away with such a statement. However, because we are talking about people with disabilties, I as a person of authority in a church can say with confidence, "We have enough disabled people here. No need to bring in any more. The ministry is already full."

This is the discrimination which periodically rears its ugly head in the church and could easily be passed over if someone wasn't sensitive to the issue. The fact that someone could say such a thing is amazing.

One note, this blog starts my 3rd year of blogging at this website. I have seen some significant changes nationally and in my own church. I think this is truly an idea whose time has come. There appears to be greater interest and receptivity. I also wanted to mention that I am working on putting many of the ideas together into a book form which I hope to have published at some point. Should things progress in that area, I will let you all know via this website.

Thank you for your interest over the past 2 years.



impossibleape said...

Happy Anniversary

Thanks for all the great insights you have shared.

I am looking forward to getting a copy of your book.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your blog, it keeps hope alive for me that one day the Christian church as a whole will finally live up to the example set for us by Christ and recognize that people with all manner of disability are just as valuable and integral to building His Kingdom here on earth as everyone else is.

Mark and Kris said...

I wish I could say I can't believe anyone in a church could say these things--unfortunatly, I know the Church is all to capable of saying and doing exactly this sort of thing; and feeling good about themselves as they do it.

We pray that this situation is not about the position you hoped was being created at your home church.

God speed on your book.