Wednesday, March 30, 2011


"So I hear you got a job in LA?”

It’s been a little over a month since regional assignment, and a little over two weeks since I learned that I had been placed in the Southwest California Synod. (I was thrilled. :)) By coincidence we were visiting SoCal this month, so I’ve already met with the bishop, received paperwork for a congregation, and had my paperwork passed on to said congregation.

I do not yet have a job or a call and do not expect to for some months, though I’ve had to disabuse more than one person outside the process, including the friend who asked me the question above, of that perfectly reasonable notion. Even so: It all seems like things are moving right along, doesn’t it?

At one level, yes. But the reality of the assignment and first call process is not nearly so simple.

Immediately upon receiving your regional assignment, you are thrust into the company of classmates, some of whom are as excited as you are, some of whom are very disappointed, and most of whom have some combination of mixed feelings. You try to temper your own ecstatic giddiness with attentiveness and sympathy.

Then you wait for the phone call that will tell you which synod you’ve been assigned to. I’m not sure I’ve ever stared at my cell phone as much as I have during that window of waiting.

Now we wait to hear from a congregation we know only from their paperwork. If it all works out, I might have a call by the summertime; if it doesn’t; we might be waiting until the fall… or later. Regardless of what happens, student housing rents for graduates go up, way up, on July 1st.

Still, our lot is no better or worse than most seeking work in a troubled economy, even if the process is a little stranger. And so we try not to let our apprehensions about the future overwhelm our gratitude for the present. We try to hold fast to hope, to faith, to love.

And we wait.

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