Further musings from the God-Spells according to RantWoman regarding Joys and Concerns.
No, RantWoman has not just been reading too much Mary Daly Intergalactic Wickedary of the English Language.
Yes, RantWoman emphatically does feel entitled to inflict her views, unfiltered, in whatever literary excess they come to her, not only on the, um, officially proclaimed pastoral care committees but also in the we are all ministers of God light on the whole entire bleeping internet. RantWoman further thinks it should be a freaking job requirement for service on such committees both to be able to talk of diverse experiences and to listen. RantWoman would further like a sense of time and invitation to do so.
In fact, people who repeatedly, repeatedly, multiple times pass up opportunities to try to have shared centered discussion in person can darned well expect to read about it on the internet and can try to work in time whenever to talk further. And if it turns out that RantWoman has also multiple times been available for tough situations when others have not, you are welcome.
RantWoman's experience is uneven on talking listening time and willingness dimensions. RantWoman does not particularly apologize if the mere mention of this experience is occasion for public embarrassment. Sometimes, dang it, public embarrassment is exactly the point. sometimes on the other hand, realism and movements of the Divine are sufficient.
RantWoman acknowledges that she herself may be far exceeding expectations about insufferability. RantWoman reminds readers of the limitations of the God as Personal Butler model of Divine Presence.
With that, RantWoman is going to do the best she can to stick to Joys and Concerns and not wander off on yet another tangent, this time aimed at someone not available due to being deceased about "How can it be that you do not pray?" RantWoman has a really different understanding of prayer than the one that evoked RantWoman's question.
RantWoman's experience is that sometimes people need lessons in comparative religion. RantWoman feels a need to offer such here. Joys and Concerns is the Quaker equivalent of Greetings and prayer requests or passing the peace or various other ways of phrasing opportunities for particular sharing. Meetings where there is a formal invitation to offer Joys and Concerns tend to offer the invitation toward the close of worship.
RantWoman dances several directions about Timing and Joys and Concerns, and the general concept of unprogrammed worship with the content left up to movements of the Divine.
RantWoman is a choir director's kid. RantDad spoke sincerely of choosing music carefully for different parts of the service, whatever the organist did for a prelude, a nice choral introit, an anthem. RantDad also went round and round with the succession of pastors he worked with about when to have time for greetings and prayer requests: after the introit? After the offertory before the sermon? RantWoman never really got to hear the pastors' sides of these conversations and generally has a sense of God showing up regardless of the timing. RantWoman is unclear why this sense never quite took root with RantDad.
RantWoman does not quite know what to suggest when someone has just spoken of a concern such as a death in the family and someone from Worship and Ministry decides it's time officially to proclaim it time for Joys and Concerns. Moments like this have occurred several times recently; these moments make RantWoman cringe and tempts her to blurt out things like"WTF do (Friends) have just been talking about?"
Look, RantWoman is a flake. RantWoman cannot promise to remember concerns beyond the moment RantWoman leaves the building. RantWoman tends to spend a lot of her worship time basically trolling for Divine Intervention anyway, so if you want RantWoman to pray about / for you / Hold you in the Light / sending energy in your direction or just avoid singeing you around her Inner Blowtorch, GET YOUR REQUEST IN EARLY,
RantWoman has standards about what concerns she will utter once the children have come back to worship. News reports about rampant sexual harassment, a young adult Friend's concerns about sexual harassment and her Meeting's inability to write a policy while other Young Friends are explicitly avoiding certain elders fall into RantWoman's should be worthy to be spoken of early. Alas, if RantWoman has not shepherded her thoughts into worship-worthy words, not even just "Please hold in the Light, before the children enter, RantWoman does not expect children to bear such burdens. This does not means that the concerns are any less concerning!
RantWoman has a sense of also owing the world some gratitudes and other meditations but RantWoman is going to close with links from previous meditations about space and time in worship and what spills out and how Friends get tapped ....
RantWoman notes with interest another blog post from someone at the very same Meeting for Worship and who offered one of the sung messages.