Thursday, September 25, 2008


I have a leadership position in the regional body of my denomination. That means that I am kind of a high profile person (for people in the denomination, that is... not for the world at large by any means). People know my name, they know what I do for the regional body, they know a bit about my work. This is sometimes a good thing, sometimes a bad thing.

There are times in this kind of service when one can become a bit of a target (when things that are not so popular are going down). And there are times when one can become a bit burdened by the responsibilities in this kind of service. (All true of being a pastor, I might add.)

There's something going on locally that necessitated my taking action recently. I did something that was very public. Lots of folks of my denomination were present, clergy and lay people alike. I was in the public eye (of this little closed circle!) in a way I have not been before.

The short version is, it went well. It went very well. It went better than most of us expected. A matter of controversy was discussed (no, not the ordination of GLBT folks... that's coming soon though). At the end of it all, no one was happy, per se; that kind of outcome wasn't really possible. But the role I played made people look at me, hard. And they really, really liked what they saw, evidently.

My email inbox is filled with congratulatory notes. I've been getting phone calls and pats on the back, both literal and figurative. People have spoken of the Spirit working through me (whoa!). And of thanking God I was in the role I was for this event.

I have such mixed emotions about all this. I am grateful I was able to perform my duties in a way that was helpful to the body. I am grateful that people are pleased with my work. But there is a part of me that is asking questions.

Such as: when all the people who think I'm such a rock star right now find out I'm a lesbian, will they:

a. Be mad?
b. Feel snookered?
c. Be confused?
d. Say to themselves, "Hey... if I thought the Spirit was working through her when she was a lesbian... could it be that the Spirit actually works through.... (gulp)... lesbians?

Just wondering how to feel about all these congratulations. Wondering if this is a good thing in the long run. Wondering if there's something wrong with me for wondering.


Songbird said...

I think they're good and that it's likely to be a gift to you and to the people who don't know, giving them that idea of the Spirit's work that you describe.
And there's nothing wrong with wondering about it!

Mary Sue said...

People are probably going to feel all those things, and some people will feel all four at once.

And that's okay.

I think you're worrying over a whole lot of stuff-you-can't-control.

Congratulations on your success!

3ThingsI'veLost: said...

no idea what people will feel when you come out. But, follow that "wrong" feeling you have to its source and you may find yourself face to face with the last remaining shreds of your own internalized homophobia. cross your arms, nod & blink - and banish those beeyatches!
:) There's not a thing wrong with you.

Processing Counselor said...

God works in mysterious ways, but she works well. Congratulations! You're a good person.

Jane R said...

e. Say to themselves "Ah - I thought so. Glad she's finally come out."
f. Not care.
g. Think "That's why she's so good at what she does!"

KJ said...

All of the above, including Jane's contributions. And if you didn't wonder what was ahead, you'd be more like Jesus than Jesus! :-)