I’m trying something new for me. I’m making an effort to meet new people out of the blue and proactively practice pastoral care.
It’s been tough for everyone and I believe the church has a lot to say and do that can be helpful to our neighborhood communities - especially on a one-on-one basis. However, we all know that church carries a lot of social and cultural baggage, most of which is unhelpful, and will keep people from reaching out to us.
And so, I’m stepping away from Prince of Peace’s offices for a while each day to hang out at a variety of local coffee shops (or Wednesdays at our Farmer’s Market) with a little sign inviting anyone who wants a listening ear.
I don’t know if this will be successful at all. But for me, this is already a big step in framing how to respond to the spiritual needs around us. Whatever happens from this particular experiment, I see more creativity and efforts at engagement happening down the road. And frankly, it’s time for pastoral care and personal prayer to join our Social Ministry folks in the waters they have already been treading for twenty-plus years.
So, if you see this sign, stop by. Or better yet, tell a friend in need.