Appointment-making and itinerancy

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Itinerancy hurts people

To say "this is for the best" means that a Methodist conference is taking away the autonomy of its pastors and the congregation. It is an archaic practice that serves no useful purpose, like the pony express and outhouses.

I read the biography of John Wesley. He was bossy and unyielding. He preached outside and traveled on horseback because he had to. He was kicked out of the Georgia colony along with his brother. His own people couldn't agree on anything. He even had a split with his own brother over theological differences. I don't think John Wesley meant for the itinerancy model to be carried out for centuries. It was a necessity back then because of lack of enough ministers to cover the geography, but not now which is why we have Wesleyan churches.

Life is uncertain and unstable enough. If our minister isn't a constant why should anyone else be? If you can't count on your minister to be there to give you pastoral care during a crisis, who can you count on? Itinerancy damages trust. I've been battling depression most of my adult life. There are people like me who need consistency and stability in the relationships that matter. And what does this do to the children of Methodist pastors? Having to change schools every 3 to 5 years is very hard on children, especially in the middle and high school years.

So for me, I attend a Methodist church on Sundays because I've developed a trust with my minister and his wife. I know I can talk to them when life is getting overwhelming, but i go to a Wesleyan Church for Wednesday night Bible study where I know the minister and his wife are not going to be forced to leave. They are my constant. When and if my minister at my Methodist church is transferred, I plan to make the Wesleyan Church my full time place of worship. I need a constant in my life.

Tmcneill 11 days ago

Thoughts on appointment-making

I had a similar humorous experience....In the midst of a lengthy illness, friends brought by a lovely Asian meal to share. I was too sick at the time to even converse, so they sweetly left the food for me to enjoy when I could, and left. Later, when I was able to take the food, at the end there was quite a surprise...my fortune cookie was EMPTY! I immediately burst into laughter! My thought, as it might pertain to appointment-making (and receiving) is that sometimes the fortune cookie might be empty, but wait.....laugh if you can and move on, God is in charge, not the cookie makers.

Doris Hoffman, St. John's UMC Aiken more than 4 years ago

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