an old saying from Texas

WARNING: NSFW/Reader Discretion Advised due to language.

I rarely write about my UU congregation. I’ve been rather deliberate about not writing about my church. In fact, i think it’s been less than half a dozen times over the year and some change that my blog has been up that I’ve even mentioned my congregation or its members.

There certainly have been plenty of times I could have posted something that really pissed me off about the members of my church… how fucking whiny they can be, how negligent they can be about their kids tearin shit up at the church, how distrusting of fellow church-goers (and human beings in general) they can be, how stingy they are with their time and money, how fucking juvenile they act over the most trivial of events, how they place importance on things that don’t make a god damn bit of difference, and how god damned, fucking shitty, silly, goofy, smelly, nerdy and motley they can be.

No, I’ve never written about those things. Although being a leader in my church i hear about, and from them, often and would love to just get it off my chest about how god damned self absorbed and self righteous they are. A personal blog might be a great place to do that but being a leader in my church and adding this site to the UU blog aggregator, I don’t think it would be appropriate to air our dirty laundry in what is essentially a public place.

I had a friend once who was in a similar position at our church who told me about the constant emails received over the stupidest SHIT. The details were never disclosed but we once had a conversation where it was said, “you would be surprised at the number of people in our congregation who you think have it so emotionally together, who are so intelligent, academically accomplished, spiritually grounded but are… are… [there was a pause, a look down, as if ashamed for them…]

… far from it.”

You wanna know somethin’? It’s stressful for those of us who are looked at to be in charge… a bunch of hack, volunteers giving it their best. It’s stressful trying to keep programs going that no one attends or would give two squirts of piss for. It’s stressful trying to put together a worship service for a UU Christian, UU Buddhist, UU Pagan, UU Atheist or UU Wannabe when you’re not a trained, professional clergy. It’s stressful trying to work with no money.

It’s stressful trying to manage work life, home life, family relationships, relationships with friends, a relationship with a lover, financial matters and overall life matters along with (what is for all intents and purposes) a second job that has become rather unrewarding. It’s stressful hoping the whole god damned thing doesn’t fall into the shitter when you’re on the crew that’s holding on as hard as you can to the “don’t fall into the shitter” safety rope. And it’s stressful keeping this place going when you believe in your heart of hearts that this place does matter yet it seems like none of the people who claim it matters don’t seem to care one way or the other if it keeps going!!!

So when one of those persons who claims this place matters but aren’t particularly involved in the day to day grunt work is overheard saying, “you know this could have been better if…”

You know what!… Go FUCK yourself and the horse you rode in on!

ok… i feel better now. I think i’ll go back to being my usual cheerful self again.

[Deist grabs the leash and his dog and steps outside whistling…]

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8 responses to “an old saying from Texas

  1. Flex Gunship Palin

    Oh yeah. Been there, felt that.

    Now, I recommend some rest, BBQ… your favorite beverage, and activities to avoid burn-out.

  2. Somehow, your parishoners remind me of a joke from Woody Allen’s “Annie Hall.”

    Woody opens and closes the movie by telling jokes, a bit of existential humor as cinematic bookends.

    One of jokes is set in the Catskills, as two tourists are complaining about how bad the food is at a restaurant. One of them adds, “and the portions are so small, too!”

    And Woody comments that life is like that — it can be so bad, and then it’s over so quickly …

    I hope your UU congregation gets the big picture back in focus, J.

  3. Oh my, how you make me long for the old days when I was Education Coordinator for my Buddhist Center . . . NOT. Isn’t ironic that the place where we go to work on our higher aspirations turns out to be just as much in the muck as our day to day bullshit.

    I remember once when I went to bat for my sangha (the Buddhist version of a congregation) and talked to our teacher about her behavior and how it was affecting everyone negatively. One of the hardest damn things I ever did. I think it ultimately ruined my relationship with her because when she went to talk to people individually who said they had been hurt by her words and actions, you know what they said? “I don’t know what LB is talking about. Everything is fine.” ARRRRRGGGGGGG. I could have killed each one of them on the spot, especially when they continued to vent to me about her behavior.

    Good luck with your unruly congregation. 🙂

  4. “So when one of those persons who claims this place matters but aren’t particularly involved in the day to day grunt work is overheard saying, “you know this could have been better if…”

    You know what!… Go FUCK yourself and the horse you rode in on!”

    Word.

  5. Ha!… Flex Gunship Palin, thanks for stopping by. There’s a similar site that gives out names but you don’t type in your real name it just dubs you.
    I got my Unitarian Jihad name, Brother Boot Knife of Enlightenment, here.

    Ombud… that joke is hysterical and quite appropriate. Gave me a good chuckle.

    LB, i thought you might appreciate this post comparing against your NKT experience. kinda makes me feel sad.

    uuMommma, your comment made me smile. hope all is well.

  6. I just, I can’t believe sweet, darling Jules wrote this post. It practically blisters.

    I guess you’re human.

    O well. Humans are more fun than saints.

  7. I understand the frustration but if you basically enjoy the leadership role you have at the congregation, posting this rant is not helpful for you nor for the congregation you help lead. The internet is not a safe place for ranting about work, for pay or pro-bono, as it can result in dire consequences. I have friends that have been fired from their employment for their personal, on their own time, rants about their work place and / or about their work mates. Even when they have changed the names to give some level of confidentialty, the stories were related in such a way that for those in the know knew what was what.

    Leadership in a congregation is hard work. People place leaders on a pedestal and sometimes those pedestals are unrealistically high. When dispointment comes, and it will come, the toppling of that pedestal can be fairly tragic. Try not to give them a reason for destroying that pedestal they have placed you on. Instead, you come off the pedestal through inviting them into shared ministry, shared responsibility. Give credit generously to others participation even if it is a minor role. Hang in there, leading UU congregations has been compared to herding cats. It is a tough job but the rewards can be grand.

    Blessings on you and the horse you rode in on.

    (Rev.) Fred

  8. Thanks for stopping by Rev. Fred. I really appreciate your great comment and your gentle way of telling me to get over it, dust myself off and keep on keepin on. And you’re right… i need to not give any leverage for toppling the pedestal. I mean look what Amuirin thinks of me now. 🙂

    Hugs to you Amuirin. And for the record… i’m loads of fun. 😀

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