Sunday, July 5, 2009

Chaplain to Children

I'm off today, Sunday July 5, to camp to become chaplain to children age 7 to 12 years. This is going back to my roots in ministry. My first call was to the Cathedral Church of St. John in Wilmington, Delaware, where, as minister of children's spiritual formation, spiritual resource for the children's choir school and program director of the Debnam House community center for elementary school age children, I was, overall, chaplain to the children of the cathedral and Brandywine Village.

I loved it. I have tried to carry this love into primary pastor ministry. It was why I was called to most of the places I have served.

It's an odd thing: work with children almost always is deputed to assisting clergy who may or may not have any gift or calling to it, or, if lucky, to lay people who do have a calling. I have noticed that is beneath the call to rector or primary pastor/clergy. The adults expect the top man or woman to tend to them, while finding other people to work with their children. Oddly, at the same time, every profile I read for rector/primary clergyperson includes some primary reference to building up the Sunday School numbers and developing a youth program.

Well, this week, for one week, I don't have to worry about any of this "who is called to what" business. I'm off to Camp Washington until Friday, and I can hardly wait.

I'll be out of touch. But I know all of you are perfectly capable of taking care of yourselves and one another. It's the children who need a priest and for six days I get to fulfill that call.

Peace to you all.

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