Friday, 2 November 2012

Back to earth

Seems like I've been lulled into a sense of false security. Even before we left cold blustery but utterly peace inducing Troon, my supervising minister was on phone asking if I'd do funeral on Wednesday. I said I would be home later and would check diary. Now it seems I've got attendance and participation in Sundays service, a funeral visit a debriefing meeting on Monday, leading Bible Study on Tuesday, funeral on Wednesday, primary school assemblies on Thursday and Friday, now it might seem like I'm about to have moan but every trip I make to my placements a round trip of thirty odd miles, funeral will be sixty odd as its a cremation, my placement including preparation is ten hours a week, somehow I'm thinking this isn't going to add up. I've also to show him notes made at pre funeral visit. Then take my service notes inc prayers to go over with him next week. Also he may make an appearance at the funeral. Now I am moaning. I've conducted around a hundred funerals in the past six years whilst doing pastoral cover and also by request of families. I know I sound grumpy but I'm supposed to be observing and deepening my understanding of the sacraments, for the past six years I've led weekly school assemblies in my attachment so I'm feeling frustrated at what seems to e very much a backward step I'm wondering if I'm being taught a bit about humility anyhow, travelling expenses are going to o through the roof! Trying to figure out what's going on and do i need to sort out an attitude problem.


  1. Okay, you are probably not going to like this, but the game's changed. You are no longer going to be a reader, but a minister. While there are many things you have experience of, they were strictly outwith the remit of what readership is. I know many, many readers do a lot more than the minimum, but that's a difference. There is also a difference in how people will preceived you now. While I don't even like the elevated status people put on ministers, that's the way it is.

    And you're supervisor is doing their job. There are minimum requirements laid down by 121 and he has to adhere to them. There is much more to the role of OLM than the sacraments - as I am sure you are aware - so he, as an official of presbytery, has to ensure you can do the role to the required standard. He is taking your experience into account as he's obviously allowed you to do the funeral solo. I have only done bits and pieces and not the tribute yet, because I had no experience of leading funerals before training. He needs to see what you've come up with (and I suspect he's given you the funeral of someone he knows well enough that he'll note major omissions), hence why needing to see the stuff before the funeral. And, in order to assess you, he needs to see you in action. It's all well and good talking about the theoreticals, but he needs to see you do this in the flesh.

    Just a FYI regarding the amount of stuff he's given you to do. Supervisors will give you a lot to see what you will do. It's about seeing how you manage your time, are pro-active and if you have the confidence to say no. By the looks of things, you haven't aserted yourself on this. If I were you I'd be telling my supervisor that level of work is inappropriate. Even once you are an ordained OLM you shouldn't be doing as much as that and, at the moment, you have study to do on top of placement. No is a word I think you need to learn.

    All the best. I hope this is helpful.

  2. Mrs G That was word in season. Yes you are right he does have to justify his side of the agreement and does often say you'll have done this before but'reflect on it in anew way' I do need to get over myself message taken on board. You are a very good judge of character No has always been a word I've had a problem with but I thought I was working on it, and had done at my attachment. So here goes again. Thanks foe the feed back I'm off to Communion at placement then bereavement visit, appraisal tomorrow when I' tackle work load! Onward and upwards with God at my back:)