Pearls for the Journey: Be Honest, Ask Questions
By Rev. Dr. Todd Grant Yonkman*
At the time I participated in the Pension Boards-United Church of Christ CREDO (PBUCC CREDO) Seminar, I was in a period of transition in ministry. I hoped that the PBUCC CREDO Seminar would help me find direction.
PBUCC CREDO provided a practical framework for discerning the next steps forward in my ministry. I found the vocational, psychological, and spiritual areas most helpful for defining the practical, emotional, and spiritual next steps on my journey.
As I consider clergy wellness and as congregations shrink and disappear, I can’t help but note that so does the traditional source of income support for clergy. I entered the profession with the understanding that the work would support a middle-class lifestyle. I'm only halfway through my career. Will this be the case going forward or will I need to seek income elsewhere? And how will I go about that? What affects will these changes have on my ability to raise my children? How will these changes limit their opportunities? These questions and more flooded my thoughts and fueled my concerns, but it was important to be honest and ask the questions that would impact my future.
A conversation with the Rev. Dr. Jane Heckles, PBUCC CREDO Coordinator, shed some light about a narrow point in her career and testimony that in her case, she made it through to a new chapter in her ministry. In that, I found some hope.
Clergy wellness is very much focused on how each of us can achieve wellness individually by making changes in our individual behavior and attitudes. Investing in wellness is always energy well spent. Give it a try!
About PBUCC CREDO
PBUCC CREDO is a holistic wellness benefit that offers clergy space and resources to examine significant areas of their lives and discern prayerfully the future direction of their vocation as they respond to God’s call in a lifelong process of practice and transformation.
The CREDO experience is anchored in a week-long Seminar and includes a pre-Seminar assessment and post-Seminar resources so that participants can deepen their commitment to lifelong wellness. Learn more about this program here http://bit.ly/PB_CREDO.
*The Rev. Dr. Todd Grant Yonkman is the Transitional Senior Minister for First Congregational Church in Stamford, Connecticut.