September 11, 2008

The Start Date

I have an official start date. It's October 1st. It's been set for quite a while now and was even officially approved at a meeting a few weeks ago. Though I still wish my start date would have come sooner after graduation, I think it's a good start date.

My first Sunday will be October 5th, which is World Communion Sunday. I think that celebration will be a great way to kick off a new season of ministry in the church.

But back to the start date. Right now I'm wondering, how realistic it is to not do anything until the start date. I know a minister has to have a start date. I've even discovered that the bueacracy of the denomination I serve likes ministers to start on the 1st or 15th of a month.

But when the start date is a little ways off, many things start to creep onto my platter. Like some emails about meetings being scheduled in October and the upcoming church newsletter and forthcoming church bulletins and new minister orientation in the area. Now obviously some things need to be planned ahead. But when I start receiving emails about things to attend and do, I feel like I've already started my job.

Part of it is my own doing. As one heading into a solo pastor position, the task of preaching every week will be daunting at first. So the other day I hauled out my lectionary calendar and the hymnals the church uses and started to look at what I'll be preaching from now until the end of the year.

But the start date, I think it's just when I'll officially start getting paid, because I've already started ministry to and with the congregation.

11 comments:

knittinpreacher said...

Same thing happened with me -- I moved in a week before my "start date", which was Palm Sunday and there was a funeral, among other things to attend to.

"PS" (a.k.a. purple) said...

I am so excited for you. I would be doing the same thing as far as sermon prep goes. Great idea. I have not been in your shoes...yet. Are you already living in the area in which you have been called? Maybe just a gentle presence until Oct.1st????

Beth said...

I like ps's suggestion of a 'gentle presence' until your start date. It's going to be healthier for you, in the long run, if you establish good boundaries now.

OH...and I'm impressed with your thinking about future sermons. That'll serve you well!

Good luck...and have fun!

1-4 Grace said...

start datees are all relative. I moved into a manse (late, late) one night and was waitign for the movign truck the next day...people began callling, showign up, and bringing me stuff...then somebody died and I had started my job...a week and a half earlier than offical...
Oh congrats!

1-4 Grace said...

oh and the stuff from a "certain denomination" for World Communion Sunday is quite good.
Excellent worship stuff.
If you would like a copy, e-mail me and I will send you my copy.
It went out to all the churches, but you may or may not have it.
Let me know

1-4 Grace said...

looks like you are about one week out now...
good luck

Teri said...

soon and very soon! I hope you're holding up okay in the gray-area time. And as one waiting for a new (well, an interim) senior pastor to start, I know how hard it is for churches to respect the boundaries of "not started yet" because we like to plan ahead and to know things....
hope all goes well in the coming week!

"PS" (a.k.a. purple) said...

Blessings as you "officially" begin this week.

Sarah said...

thinking of you as you settle in to the manse and get ready to "really start" on 10/1. Praying thru this w/you from afar.

Beth said...

It's October 1 and I'm holding you in prayer as you hit your 'official' start day! God's blessings!

Teri said...

hope things have started well!