For four years I was an Assemblies of God minister and a monk with the Brothers and Sisters of Charity at the Little Portion Hermitage. This is an excerpt from my book,Taking Off My Comfortable Clothes: Removing Religion to Find Relationship.
- A religious community has much in common with any group of people, be they a family or a local church group. Foremost among these commonalities is a myopic view of the terrain, often showing itself under the title of “It’s not my job.”
- While I lived at the Little Portion, one of my jobs was to sort the recyclables. We had two receptacles in the kitchen—one for trash and the other for cans. I would try to tend to both as frequently as possible, but sometimes I didn’t get around to it in a timely manner, and it was then I began to formulate my understanding about people’s attitudes regarding things they didn’t own.
I remember watching an individual approach the recycling bin in the kitchen with a can in his hand. Since I had been remiss in dealing with the receptacle, this person found it overflowing. I then watched him as he placed his can high upon the pile, balancing it in such a way that defied gravity, only to walk away satisfied that he did his job. I guess it never occurred to him to pick up the can and carry it fifteen feet out to the recycling area. Oh, that’s right, IT WASN’T HIS JOB! Continue Reading