8/17/22 – Root Causes

Who did it?

We have been wrestling with this question for over a year now. The short answer is that it is unknowable. It appears to be the convergence of a number of forces over a long time that came to a crescendo while our minister was on sabbatical. Carry Bailey has done a lot of digging and talking and has come up with at least some of those forces, to which I have added a few:

  • We never fully grieved Pam
  • Christina was called to lead a Program Church, which is a very different leadership style than Pam—and some in the Church were unhappy with the change and missed Pam all the more.
  • There was the unfortunate incident over paint color in a bathroom that blew up and greeted Christina on her arrival.
  • We lack a structure to deal with dissent.
  • Unhealthy communication, incuding gossip, triangulation, anonymous sources, prevailed and prevails.
  • There was inappropriate use of power and politics in our church, which is fundamentally a covenantal body living together under a sacred promise with God.
  • Ministerial Evaluation was held while the minister was on Sabbatical.

There is no “who done it?” It is all of this and probably more. There was different trauma for different people, depending on who you knew and how much you wanted to know or be in the know. There is plenty of shame and blame to go around. And there remains the kernel of who we are that we hold onto—wanting to reclaim the sacred promise of ourselves as the body of Christ.

The Council agrees that we need the help of a consultant to tell our stories, to listen to one another, to seek forgiveness, to embrace one another—and to insure it doesn’t happen again.