May 2, 2016

Not Frozen, Introverted

Episcopalians: we’re not God’s frozen people. We’re God’s introverted people.”

This was said by Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, perhaps one of the minority of extroverted Episcopalians, but it nonetheless rang true.

I don’t know that Episcopalians are actually more introverted than your average population, but I think that the culture of the Episcopal Church is introverted, focused less on creating high energy church services or on charismatic individuals and more on quiet faith cultivated in liturgy and community.

I heard Bishop Curry say these words at the Episcopal Communicators conference a few weeks ago. I am certainly one of those Episcopal introverts and yet I always enjoy this conference. Although the many hours spent with other people (not to mention the jet lag) left me somewhat exhausted by the end of the conference, I was also energized by the people I met and the shared sense of mission.

Regardless of whether we’re actually a church populated by introverts, I think the Episcopal Church and its members require a common mission as well as a culture that fosters connection and a mutual support in order to thrive.

I felt that at Episcopal Communicators conference. Everyone I met was working hard to share the Good News and better serve the world. I’m sure under the surface, like any organization there, are the normal human foibles, but ultimately there is a sense that everyone wants what is best for each other and God’s mission. We’re all part of the Jesus movement, as Bishop Curry might say, even if some of us might only say it quietly. 

I like the Episcopal Communicators conference because we’re all there for the same reason: to meet other Episcopal communications professionals, to learn, and to support each other however we can. Whether we’re extroverts or introverts, this shared sense of mission and ministry is essential. How can we foster it in our communities throughout the year? 

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