when pastors get together

>> January 15, 2009

Every region, church, and/or denomination does it differently. But almost everyone has some time every year where pastors get together for meetings and retreat. Congregational churches may get all their staff together to plan out the next year. Others may gather with the staff of a few churches at once.

Our church has pastors' meetings twice every year - January and July. We gather at this fabulous retreat center with about 150 other pastors from across our state. Families are encouraged to attend for the three-weekday-long retreat.

For the first 3 years, I hated it. Twice a year I would tag along, bury myself in work on my laptop, and spend the entire time in our room - coming out only for meals. I felt lonely, isolated, and unwelcome.

All the other pastor's wives in my age group either worked at jobs that didn't allow them to attend, or (if they attended) already had a passel of kids. As a late-20-something with no kids and a demanding career - I felt like a total outsider. I'd have loved to dialogue with some of the pastors, but I learned a long time ago that most male pastors don't know what to do with a woman who has strong opinions about ministry/outreach/service/evangelism/theology, etc.

(Fortunately, God gave me to a husband that is secure enough in his masculinity not to be threatened by all my opinions on things!)

So I kept my mouth shut, and wondered if I would EVER make a friend among the other PWs.

A few months ago, after 3 years of wishing - I finally began to make friends. Our January retreat is this week, and I can't wait to see Holly, Elizabeth & Denise.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who wonders where I fit in the complex life of my husband's colleagues. So how about you? Whether you have a local staff retreat or a big regional one like ours, where do you fit in?

3 comments:

Adel January 15, 2009 at 3:13 PM  

Funny, I just got back from "worker's meeting" at Leoni meadows. I had an awesome time! There were few meetings, lots of free time, games, great food, a rough hike, some good heart to heart talks (with pastors, of all things), and of course, dazzling mountain scenery, which i like very much. I'm learning to be myself, and that probably is the biggest thing that made this retreat fun!

LeadHership: January 15, 2009 at 8:50 PM  

Oh, I SO go and leave the kiddos at home. Its a win-win. My man gets to do ministry and I get to have hang time with him.

Hey, I really like this blog. Keep up the good work.

Steph January 16, 2009 at 8:11 PM  

I grew up a PK, and always loved workers' meetings. I don't know exactly why, cause looking back I'm not sure the pastors enjoyed it as much as I did! Maybe it was because there were a few of us teenage girls who were all quite serious about God and outreach and we loved meeting up and gleaning all the info we could from the speakers about how to do ministry. I guess that love for workers' meetings is still in me. I'm going to a large regional one next week, and though I don't yet know any of the other pastors' wives that will be there, I'm looking forward to it eagerly.

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