This summer, my divinity-student wife is doing a unit of clinical pastoral education.
As someone without any pastoral care experience, I’ve been fascinated
to hear about the scenarios (real and hypothetical) that come up in
CPE-related conversations. For instance, a classic: Would you baptize a
Not should you but would you, a fairly
different question. The issue is the potential tension between decency
and order and what may in the moment just seem like simply decency.
Such moments can come up in worship contexts as well as in pastoral
care, as in this somewhat lighter example: Would you serve communion to
A Toronto priest did recently.
The story might be a real eye-roller if she had done so on principle
and offered an earnest theological rationale as to why. Instead, I
think it’s pretty interesting: A church visitor brought his dog to the
altar with him. Apparently the priest, faced with a surprising and
somewhat delicate moment, made a quick decision and went with it.
easy to name better ways she might have handled it. But is it as easy
to say with confidence that we would have come up with one of them on