Friday, February 6, 2009

The Cluster Dance

Do the cluster dance!
Do the cluster dance!
dancing Pictures, Images and Photos
Even if you take a stance
It’s a game of chance.
we are forced
To do the cluster dance.
dancing Pictures, Images and Photosdancing Pictures, Images and Photos

Liz danced with Helena
The pair danced well and good.
A very short relationship
But they danced as best they could.

Then, Helena forced to dance with Stan:
Pastoral musical chairs.
Then, Good and Saintly Helena
was simply kicked down the stairs.

The music stopped for Helena.
The song was all askance.
Helen’s doors were locked.
No more cluster dance.

Now, Stan dances with Carmel.
Between them, hopefully, some romance.
For Stan and Carmel now
find themselves in the Cluster Dance.

So, Liz dances on with Francis.
In fact, Liz dances with two.
For Liz dances with Lourdes.
But now, she finds out Patrick stands in queue.
dancing Pictures, Images and Photosdancing Pictures, Images and Photosdancing Pictures, Images and Photos

At least,
that’s what the vicar said.
Is the dance step changing,
or is this all in the vicar’s head?

For Patrick danced with Joseph.
But, apparently, that relationship was scarred.
And now Patrick and Joseph
Rearranging their dance card.

Or is the dance now being changed
by some unseen force?
Rumors abound
about who will dance with whom
and who wants a dance divorce.

But rumors come and go.
For the fact is, cluster is no romance.
Still, we are forced
To do this illogical
energy draining
time wasting
clergy killing
Cluster Dance.

Meetings, meetings, meetings.
Then, phone calls not returned.
Some behave like jello.
This all has me concerned.

Put your right foot in.
Take your right foot out.

Do the cluster dance
and turn your parish inside out.

And through it all avoid the topic
That gave this dance her start;
The declining clergy numbers.
Rather, let’s just tear parishes apart.

Will we cluster and cluster again
until all clergy are gone?
Is there not a way
to change this morbid song?

And what of all the women
with their M.Div. Degree?
Could they not, somehow,
A parish shepherd be?

I’m not talkin’ ordination,
‘Cuz that’s another song.
I’m just talkin’ pastoral leadership.
Bishop Untener, how I miss your songs!

And what of all the married men
with a Master of Divinity?
Does having a wife
Make then unfit for ministry?

"Priest, Prophet and King."
That’s how all the faithful are baptized.
And yet, in this crazy cluster dance
The priesthood, in all forms, is compromised.

The body is just one
Many members there may be.
But I never knew that to be Christ’s Body
Church members must have a dance degree.
dancing Pictures, Images and Photosdancing Pictures, Images and Photosdancing Pictures, Images and Photosdancing Pictures, Images and Photosdancing Pictures, Images and Photos

Hoc Est Enim Corpus Meum
". . .my body given up for you," he said.,
I don’t think he meant to keep changing, adding partners
Until the clergy all are dead.

In fact, we commit a sarcedotal genocide
If we continue in this fashion.
Giving clergy 2, 3 parishes
Will kill them and/or kill their ministerial passion.

Archbishop! Archbishop!
I know you’re new and all.
But can you, will you wave your magic wand
And get some logic at this dance hall?

Oops! I mean your crosier.
But, seriously, and with all due respect,
Let me say that I am tired
And this cluster dance is wrecked.

I’m tired of semantics.
For if you look through my eyes
You will see that "cluster" means
Nothing more than an Ecclesial Downsize.

Mother, can you hear my cry?
Send us your flower song!
Create creative ministry!
Create a place where all can belong!

Ruah! Ruah! Ruah!
Come, O Great and Holy Spirit!
Let Your music play!
And may the faithful hear it!

May we dance the dance of Ruah!
And dance and dance again!
May we dance the dance of Ruah!
Amen and Amen!

(c) 2009, Rubi Martinez-Bernat.
About Rubi:
Rubi owns several blogs and websites, including Permission is given to post "The Cluster Dance" to your blog your website. It must be published in its entirety without edit and include copyright and the full contents of this "about" paragraph, including clickable link. All other use in all other media prohibited.