The Perfect Minister
As we are about to embark on a new appointment I think it appropriate to reflect on the results of an American survey that states all the qualities that parishioners expect from the perfect minister. They were fed into a computer that showed that the perfect pastor is 28 years old, tall, slim, athletic and attractive.
S/he preaches for not more than ten minutes, frequently condemns sin and social evils, but never upsets anyone.
S/he works tirelessly from 6.30am to 11pm and is also a caretaker.
S/he earns $200 per week, wears good clothes, buys interesting books, drives a decent car and gives about $50 to worthy causes.
S/he is a person of limitless patience, gentleness and kindness, but also strong, vigorous and a decisive leader.
S/he gives themselves completely to others, but never gets too close to anyone lest they be criticised.
S/he prefers to work with young adults, but spends all their time with senior citizens.
S/he spends their entire day in parish visitations, in comforting the sick and bereaved and is working in the schools, but is always at the church, when anyone calls or visits.
S/he is a person of deep spirituality and wide learning, but of down-to-earth practicality, a capable administrator, a financial genius, a wise counsellor, an architect and a builder.
If our minister does not measure up to these expectations, simply send this as a letter to eight other parishes, who are tired of their minister. Then bundle up your minister and send them to the church at the top of the list. In one week you will receive 1¾ ministers in return and at least one of them should be perfect. Have faith in this letter. One parish broke the chain and got their old minister back in less than three weeks.
Adapted from “Sydney Catholic Week”.