DCC News

 

Weekly e-newsletter for members and friends of the Dublin Community Church

 

October 26, 2006

                                                           

                                      

Call It What You Will

 

I got a chuckle out of it.

 

I am speaking of a “typo” in last week’s e-mail edition of our newsletter. I’ll take responsibility for it, but if you look at it more closely…the “typo” was actually correct. Here is what it said,

 

The next New Member service is planned for October 29th with a bunch in the Narthex afterwards.  If you are or know someone that is interested in joining the church, please contact the church office at 889-1026.  

 

Did you notice the typing mistake? It’s in the first line where it says, “The next New Member service is planned for October 29th with a bunch in the Narthex afterwards. It is supposed to announce a “brunch” in the Narthex. Instead it talks about a “bunch” in the Narthex. We are hosting a brunch, but we do indeed, have a bunch of people joining the church. We have a bunch…at least 11, maybe a few more than that will officially join on October 29.

 

It was a simple “typo” and yet it was absolutely correct. We do have a bunch.

 

For years there have been emails circulating about “typos” in church newsletters and bulletins. I guess there is something intrinsically funny about a serious church newsletter or bulletin announcing that during the sacred Easter service, “members of the Women’s Guild will come forward and lay an egg on the altar.” Or for the church bulletin to read,

“Let us all sin.” (Instead of, “Let us all sing.”) Church’s are not known for hilarity. We deal in life and death and sin and suffering and doing good works…and heaven help us if we should make a joke about one of those.

 

Do you want to know the greatest fear of all ministers? It is that we might get the name of the deceased or the name of the bride wrong. I have heard stories of referring to the deceased as “Alice” when her name was “Bertha.” It’s pretty hard to explain your way out of that one. More than one minister has referred to the new bride by the name of the first wife of the groom. You can’t make a lot of jokes about that for a while and you’d better hope that there is an open bar afterwards so people will dwell on something else.

 

What has this all to do with the bunch of new members who will join Dublin CC on October 29? Probably nothing.

 

It just got me thinking about how people perceive the church and ministries and ministers. And one of the questions which I posed to the new members was…”what actually brought you to Dublin CC…what is it that made you decide to officially join our church?”

 

 

 

The answers were surprisingly simple and heartfelt. I spoke of several of their reasons for joining in the sermon this past week and the bottom line for the new members is that this is a church which feels right for them and their family. No one was joining because of the ministers, but because of the congregation it self, which was so welcoming to them. Their reasons for joining are seen in their direct answers…

 

“Our kids like the kid’s choir.”

“The church just felt right to me.” Several said this.

“We were welcomed by so many.”

“We were not pressured to join.” All seemed to chime in on this comment.

 

Some years ago when I was serving a church out West. We had a number of attendees who were construction people who were making additions to the territory’s Hydroelectric dams. These families were good people, but they tended to move around due to the nature of construction projects. One woman, Cheryl, was active in our congregation. Her husband was a construction supervisor and he and the kids were active in our church. About that time we were set to bring in new members and Cheryl hesitated to join because the construction project would end within the year and they would move on. But one day she said, “I want to join, we are here, right now. I like the feel of this congregation and want to be a part of it.” She joined. She never regretted it. It felt good to her to make a statement of support for our church. Our church meant so much to her and her family. They later moved to another state, and joined another UCC church. The Spirit was working in her.

 

Our new members, a whole “bunch” of them, are about to declare their love for this congregation and its mission. And their presence tells us that we are moving forward confidently in this Interim time. It’s not interim to them; at all…it is here and now.

 

Peace,
           
          

Rev. Bob Tussing