Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Presbytery swaps

This Sunday will find me in one of the most lively and spirtually aware churches in our presbytery.  On this particular Sunday  the ministers in the presbytery play musical pulpits and all swap around. This is not a popular Sunday with either ministers or congregations. Some congregations feel they're just getting an old recycled sermon. Ministers get pissed off travelling form one end of the presbytery to the other ( a not inconsiderable  distance) I know the congregation I'm going to feels this way because the minister told me so! So no pressure !! I want to take Gods word and lead worship in such a way that the congregation feel blessed and "fed" . Their usual minister is dynamic, down to earth and a hard act to follow so. I'm praying God leads me and fills me with confidence as I lead worship. Feeling nervous already!!!


  1. Congregations: Well they should be grateful that a minister has bothered their backside to turn up for them. As you know, for many congregations that are in vacancy, there is the continual pressure to find pulpit cover, especially in the summer.

    And we have all recycled some or all of a sermon before, but sermons are there to be delivered. Of course they should be tailored to the needs of the congregation, but it's God's word that's being delivered, so they should sit down, shut up and be thankful that someone cares enough for their spiritual wellbeing to follow God's call into ministry.

    Ministers: Well they should be grateful that God is giving them the opportunity to spread His word. I'd be grateful for any chance to preach to a congregation. So people have to travel a distance. Well compared to the distances some ministers have to travel on a Sunday, especially up north.

    Once or twice a year is hardly that taxing, and all parties might learn something. There has been times this year where I wuold have loved to preach to a congregation, even if I had to go to the other end of the UK.

    (rant ends!)

    If it's the congregation I'm thinking of, they are a good bunch. enjoy yourself.

  2. Just to add to what Spot says, the congregations seem very inward looking if that's their attitudes. Our home presbytery does a pulpit exchange and the people on the pews I know like it as it lets them see the church is bigger and wider and more diverse than their own congregation may think.

    Yes, there might be recycling of sermons, but it is also said the average preacher only really preaches one or two sermons anyway. It's how it's delivered and how the listeners are open to what God is saying to them which matters.

    And, sometimes, it's a welcome break from the 'norm'. Hope you haven't got the church where the minister wants to dictate the order of service. If the congregation has that attitude, perhaps the issues come from the leadership....but I am just conjecturing.

    Good luck. We'll be interested to here how things went.