A Call to Be Mediocre?

“This church with which we should be thinking is the home of all, not a small chapel that can hold only a small group of selected people. We must not reduce the bosom of the universal church to a nest protecting our mediocrity.” – Pope Francis

This quote from Pope Francis has been making its way around the global block. In fact, many of Pope Francis’s statements have caused quite a stir in the electronic world of Twitter, Facebook, and the blog. I’ll be honest, I’m intrigued by the new pope. He seems to be willing to challenge the church in some unexpected and surprising ways.

The word that struck me in this particular quote was “mediocre”. Is that what we think the call of the universal church is today? Or maybe more importantly, is this the reflection that the world sees of the church today? I don’t know about all of the time, but one can’t help think that from time to time our answer is a half-hearted, “Yep, we’re mediocre. Yea for us…sigh” I believe the world sees this kind of reflection from the universal church  more often than we will admit.

Being a follower of Jesus is a daily call to be more than small groups that are mediocre, isn’t it?

Maybe the church just needs more cheerleaders like Lake Wobegon has in the great Garrison Keillor. Keillor concludes every reflection about this quaint fictional Minnesota town by saying, “Well, that’s the news from Lake Wobegon, where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.”

The church isn’t called to be a small collections of mediocre groups whose mission is to protect our turf from the rest of the world behind closed door meetings. As followers of the risen savior Jesus Christ, I hope that we are called to be more than that, don’t you? Thanks Pope Francis for challenging me to think and pray about that a little lately.

Thoughts? Anyone?


Pastor Craig

About Pastor Craig Schweitzer

I like to think of myself as a pretty easy going person who seeks to daily discover anew how God is present in my life and in the world in which I live and serve. I am a husband, father, brother, son, friend, pastor, and maybe most significantly – a child of God! My beautiful spouse Wendy and I live in Bismarck, ND with our twin daughters, Ilia and Taegan and our crazy dogs Henri & Sadie. I’ve serve on the staff of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Bismarck, ND since July 2001. I was first called to serve as Music & Worship Minister, in 2010 was called to serve as Pastor of Worship and Youth Education, and in January 2014 was called to serve as Senior Pastor. My professional background is a diverse collection of musical and educational experiences that ranges from live concert production and promotion to recording studios, and live performance to music education. Prior to joining Good Shepherd, I was an Instructor of Music at Bismarck State College and owned and operated a successful teaching studio called 6x6 Guitar Studio. I am a graduate of the University of Mary in Bismarck and Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley, CA and was ordained to the Ministry of Word and Sacrament in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in September 2010. Outside of Good Shepherd, I enjoy hanging out with my family and friends, reading, listening or playing any and all music, a relaxing round of golf, or spending some quiet time with God. View all posts by Pastor Craig Schweitzer

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