Saturday, January 10, 2015

The Korean pastor has raised some serious questions


Rev. Sam Anh is in for a visit. He’s with a Korean Presbyterian congregation that is  a member of the literally hundreds of Presbyterian denominations in Korea. …but closer to PCUSA than any other US Presbyterian denominations Sam says. They are interested in some serious space use at West-Park. Multiple services multiple days, multiple spaces. They could help us significantly inn our reconstruction and pick up a big chunk of our annual budget.

But there are, of course, issues. What would it mean identity wise to have a guest congregation with many multiples of members than us? Would we lose our presence, our identity? Although, as I say to him, that’s our problem, not his… They seem to be moving forward regarding women, but we need to talk about lgbtq inclusion. Still an issue. I need to know that  no queer member of West-Park…or visitor…or friend…would ever feel uncomfortable in our house. Ever.

We’ve got clear theological differences here. Although I do detect a gentleness of spirit in him.  We have to face this.

The whole phenomenon of Korean Presbyterianism remains a bit of a mystery. Why, in all the places of the world, did Presbyterianism find such fertile ground in Korea? There is indigenous religion overlaid with Confucianism overlaid with a conservative missionary version of Calvinism. What in Korean culture so connected with what in Presbyterian culture? Maybe it’s worth finding out.

Strangely, this might actually work.

We’ve come a long way from the last relationship with a Korean pastor who when I asked him about this issue responded, No problem. There are no homosexuals in Korea.

Pat O has bad news. Our new work with the boilers has increased the efficiency of our heating system. Radiators that were working at 30% capacity are now cranking out heat at full volume. The sanctuary is a virtual sauna. And now, overworked, they are springing leaks all over. And it has to be dealt with ASAP….Another time when regarding the building, I’m ready to say, that’s it, I’m done, I’m out of here…brick and mortar don’t count no more…

We’ve been going back and forth for awhile with Nairoby, referred to us form Stan with the Representatives. After a lot of conversation, we may be ready to be able to do her origami theatre piece.

A lot is going on here…

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