Bobbing in the Ocean
  Date posted: Tue, May 26th, 2020

Bobbing in the Ocean

At one of our recent weekly Mercer team meetings, as we were sharing experiences in balancing work at home with domestic responsibilities, Aissa said "I feel like I'm bobbing in the ocean." What an apt metaphor for those of us for whom the structure in our lives has become unglued. The patterns, the progressions, the processes of our office lives are now experienced from a distance. Things have become unpredictable. We surge towards the shore, get close, and then are swept back out to sea. When can we go back to work? Will work be the same when we do go back? What if we resume a more stable pattern of physical proximity in the fall, there's a new wave, and we are forced to return to quarantine?

At Mercer this all translates into conversations we are beginning to have about what shape our programs will take as we move through the phases of "reopening." In September will we return to the pattern of evening and weekend courses and programs offered in the Mercer Building? Or will Zoom be our constant companion? Will we operate in a hybrid, with students and teachers meeting periodically in safely distanced spaces supplemented or supported by more flexibly scheduled online classes? Options, options; shifting scenarios: we are presented with new opportunities accompanied by daunting challenges.

Know this: the Mercer School of Theology will remain in operation through the pandemic crisis. We will continue to offer a full academic program focused on preparing ordinands for the vocational diaconate. We will continue to offer access by interested lay people to courses from our academic program as well as shorter courses offered seasonally and as needed. But for us to continue our mission in a changed context, we need to constantly hear from you. What do you like about us? What could we do better? What's missing? What might make your church life more meaningful in this time of disruption? Email us. Tell us!!

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