Steve tagged me... thanks Steve!... to do this fun middle name meme. Here are the rules:
1. You have to post the rules before you give your answers.
2. You must list one fact about yourself beginning with each letter of your middle name. (If you don't have a middle name, use your maiden name or your mother's maiden name).
3. At the end of your blog post, you need to tag one person for each letter of your middle name. (Be sure to leave them a comment telling them they've been tagged.)
I've got a short middle name, but let's see what I can come up with:
J is for Jesus, and also Justice. Caution: Presbyterian intricacies to follow. I am currently living with the disappointment of my denomination having, yet again, stuck it royally to GLBT folks. On February 11 the General Assembly Permanent Judicial Commission ruled that all candidates for ordination must comply with the sexual standards outlined in the highly controversial G-6.0106B, which requires fidelity in marriage (which, of course, is prohibited to GLBT people) and chastity in singleness. I am outraged, along with so many of my friends, many of whom must minister in the shadows due to this wholly unacceptable ruling and many like it throughout the years. In 2006 there was a collective sigh of relief as General Assembly accepted the report of the Peace Unity and Purity Task Force, an authoritative interpretation of our constitution which allowed for ministers, deacons and elders to declare scruples-- i.e., that a particular passage of the Book of Order was contrary to their conscience. Then it was up to the ordaining body to determine whether the item scrupled was an "essential" or a "non-essential." But the haters wouldn't have it, claimed that we were abandoning the gospel and caving to modernity. To which I say: show me the passage where Jesus addresses this. Then see if you can count the passages where Jesus talks about loving and caring for the least, the most despised, where he challenges oppressive purity codes, where he reaches out to welcome in those considered "impure." Jesus. Justice.
A is for Articulate (stole it from More Cows). I think I'm pretty good with words, generally, though the above is a bit wordy and rambly. But I love finding just the words I want, especially in preaching.
N is for Noble. This feels funny (as in, arrogant... hey, maybe A was actually for Arrogant!). But: I try to take the high road. I do. I did it in my divorce. I try to do it in sticky pastoral situations. I tend to feel it is good to be able to look back on these interactions with a minimum of regret. That requires biting the tongue sometimes, not trashing my ex and his choices (actually, he's a pretty good guy, except for the massive life mistake of leaving me), and trying to find the right words to respond to unacceptable invective (sometimes... not so far in New Church).
E is for Extrovert, usually. I thrive in parish ministry, in part because it is an activity which brings me together both with members of the congregation who are excited and motivated to work together on a common goal, and because it brings me together with other clergy, in official and unofficial capacities. I have not been above "using" my children (when they were younger) to make friends for myself and create community. That said, I also have experienced the mid-life correction: I thrive with quiet and alone time more than I used to, I value it to re-charge. But I do love people.
This was fun! I continue in the Magdalene tradition of asking you all to tag yourselves.