Blog Post by
Rev. Dr. Craig M. Howard
Last night I participated in a webinar with the poet David Whyte. I was introduced to Whyte’s poetry through my spiritual director. In anticipation of the event I purchased two of his books and listened to some of his poetry online. It is always a wonderful experience to hear a poet read their work, listening to what is emphasized with their voice and the cadence of their speech. The poems I’d read before the event were amazing! The event had over 350 people online, and for one hour, my soul was fed.
I believe that some things feed our souls, while others may drain it of life. As we endure the political wrangling, racial and social strife, the atmosphere of fear and economic toll from the pandemic, and as we live with the kids at home and home becoming where we work, the life of our souls is being squeezed out.
What are you doing to nurture your soul? I met with several of our pastors today and asked the same question. Some talked about walking or taking a trip to a beautiful place. One pastor is taking music lessons to learn a new musical instrument. Many relish the idea of turning off the electronics and finding peace away from email and Zoom.
As a reminder, if you take advantage of counseling during this time, the Board of Pensions is waiving the co-payment fee. In the midst of all that is swerving around us, it is important that we care for our physical, mental, and spiritual health. It is critical that congregations allow pastors the space to step away from all of the pressures and decisions of ministry. Schools, hospitals, and senior care facilities should make sure that the chaplains who care for others are being cared for too.
Finally, let’s look out for one another. Make that call to your ministry colleague whom you haven’t seen in a meeting or haven’t heard from in a while. Small touches go a long way. We will get out of 2020 and walk into 2021 together. Our connectional unity is our strength as we walk with our God.
Rev. Craig M. Howard