Mewsings from Lowecat (aka Indianacat)

My rants, ravings, and overall 'mewsings' on life, the universe, and everything.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Havin' Issues with My Faith

Ever since my father died in May, I've been waitin' for any kind of call, prayer card, or some kind pastoral acknowledgement frommy church and/or the pastor about it.  Granted, the DH and I haven't been present very often due to work schedules, and our presents to the church haven't been constant - at least not monetary in the offering plate.  We've been filling the aluminum can, cardboard and newspaper recyclin' bins every week! - but we've been members for a large number of years. 

Therefore, I didn't think that, despite our absences, that my church wouldn't ignore a time of extreme need.  The church office certainly got timely notice of it!  But the days and weeks passed with no acknowledgement.  Then it became months, and I grew dissatisfied with my church.

Yesterday (Wednesday), the DH took another load of cans, papers, and cardboards to the recycle bins.  The church gets a little somethin' for all that recyclin', so we feel that we're helpin our church and the environment combined.  He came home with a copy of the June church newsletter, which gave a small condolence announcement in the 'transititions' column, which is on the back page. 

Apparently, the mailed copy we received wasn't correct, and the minister had one more copy of the newsletter postin' Daddy's passin' available to give to us.

A little too little and a little too late, to me.  Robert feels that I'm makin' a mountain outta a molehill, that's it not that big a deal. 

I've been accused many times of measuring other ministers against Daddy.  Guilty as charged.  Sometimes those ministers didn't measure up.  It's especially true in this case.

You see, even if the member hadn't attended as often as they should, Daddy would've reached out to that member anyway.  He would've called as quickly as he could upon receipt of the message.  He would've made a pastoral personal visit to the person's home.  He would've sent a prayer card the first business day after the worship day that he received the notice. 

In other words, he wouldn't have just put a three line blurb in the next month's newsletter.  He wouldn't have made that parishioner feel like he didn't care. 

And that's why I'm not very satisfied with my church right now.  Because the minister, for whom I felt a tremendous amount of respect, has made me feel like it makes little difference to him that I'm hurting.  Kinda like 'since you can't be bothered to come to church regularly, I can't be bothered to help you with your pain.'

Robert doesn't see it that way.  He seems to feel that we can't expect them to treat us like regular attendees.  He forgets that I grew up in the parsonage, and have seen how people SHOULD be treated.  Daddy would've NEVER allowed one of his flock to remain lost like this. 

I didn't expect the pastor to show up on my doorstep with platitudes and proverbs and psalms.  Just SOME kind of personal acknowledgement that the representative of my faith gave a damn.

My best friend and heart sister brought me to that church when Daddy had his second recurrence of cancer.  She wanted me to have a church home in case the worse happened.  Two ministers have served and moved on to other assignments since then.  I've gotten along well with both of 'em.

Basically, as a retired minister's daughter, I would always try to be respectful of the serving pastor, and NOT point out what I felt he/she was doin' wrong.  Now, when it came to discussin' theology, I clung to Daddy's example like velcro. It often made for stimulatin' discussions.  Some retired minister's children would make life very difficult for the servin' pastor, and I didn't want to do that kind of thing.

SInce 4 May, I've been battlin' deep depression, deeper than what I usually battle.  Not sleepin' as well as I could (DH would say it's because I stay up late writin', but when one can't sleep, one might as well be productive!), weird eatin' habits.  Life hurts (like the cymbalta commercial!).  I take my meds, and try to find some joy in life, but it's damn difficult at times. 

I've had some release at some of the strangest times/places, which I've shared in earlier blogs.  Yesterday (aka early Thursday mornin'), I watched 'The Reluctant Astronaut' with Don Knotts on AMC.  Daddy always enjoyed that movie.  Good clean fun.  I could hear his laugh in my mind while watchin' that film. 

It made me miss him more.

So I'm tryin' to determine if I want to change memberships or not.  There's a United Methodist Church not far from us in Acton.  About  10 minutes away by car/bike.  Kinda in a rural settin', just off the interstate.  Early Sunday service like the one we're currently members, but closer. 

I still believe in a higher power.  That faith is OK.  I just have a lot of trouble believin' that organized religion these days can help me as it did when I was growin' up. 

So for once, I'm gonna throw it out to all y'all.  Should I just accept things as they are with my church?  Let go and let God, as it were?  Or should I try to find somethin' a little more comfortable?