Thursday, November 10, 2005

Pre-Theology Ministry Log 04

(see here)

Pre-Theologian Ministry Log

Date: Thursday, Nov 10, 2005

Event: St. Ambrose Family Outreach Center: Tutored Ms. Jenkins for her G.E.D.

Name the feelings you experienced during the event: Tonight I realized that I’m walking Ms. Jenkins through her lessons a little too much. I’ve noticed that after each step of a problem she asks me if it’s right or not. This certainly isn’t going to help her when she’s taking the G.E.D. and I’m not there. Hehe, she asked me if she could spray paint me black, put a wig on me, and take me to the G.E.D. with her! We got a good laugh out of that! She also has a little multiplication table that she always refers to rather than trying to figure it out herself (or actually memorize the table). I noticed I was getting a little frustrated with her as the evening progressed which I felt a little bad about. Part of me wants to take this seriously and wants to be stern with her so that she’ll take it seriously too…she often gets sidetracked and just wants to breeze through it so she can get it done and go out with her friends. But at the same time, she is my elder, and though I am her tutor, I have no right to talk down to her like she’s my student or something. I asked her if I was being too hard on her, but she said No.

Our conversation digressed wildly from our work too, but I can’t quite remember how. At one point she mentioned that her mother was a very devout Catholic and “boy, she loved her Catholicism!” Then she said, “but this is 2005, don’t ‘nobody carry on like that anymore.” I just laughed and said kinda jokingly “now, now, there’s nothing wrong with Catholicism.” When I think back on it there were probably 101 other more articulate ways to defend the faith at that moment but, oh well. I didn’t pursue it further than that, but I was a little worried that she had left her faith. At one point (again, I’m don’t know how we got on the subject…I promise we actually DO study!) she lamented how sexual “everybody was” when she was younger, but “that don’t mean you can’t still give your life to Jesus.” I remember thinking to myself that that’s not how Catholics usually articulate it. Finally, right before we left she started talking about her colonoscopy and how the guy studying next to her should get his checked! I felt pretty embarrassed then! So, anyway, I’m a little concerned about the digression of our conversation and the best way to keep us on task!

What was difficult and or troubling? Why? A little guilt over getting frustrated with her. I wasn’t totally impatient but I could tell that I wasn’t being as completely patient as I could have been. Also some embarrassment (and some scandal) at her digressions.

Where was God in this event? Outside of the Sister, His abiding presence was silent to me, at least from what I can discern for now.

What have you learned about yourself in the wake of this event? I have a tendency to get impatient and should be careful to avoid that.

No comments: