STOLEn: the Gospel?

An illustration of an exercise in missing the point:

A certain United Methodist Deacon has spent untold hours working with a variety of folk who are seriously incensed at the possibility of Deacons and Elders wearing stoles the same way in worship services at Annual Conference.

Because, as everyone knows, Deacons and Elders wear their stoles differently.

Even if someone could show me something more authoritative than “It is recommended that…'” I really cannot see why this question is more than a topic of discussion.

SO, while The United Methodist Church imagines no malaria and tries to incorporate Business School modeling into ministry, we also waste valuable energy debating how stoles ought to be worn by whom.

Can we rethink this?

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10 thoughts on “STOLEn: the Gospel?

  1. Having never been inclined to work for the liturgical police the whole question strikes me as entirely irrelevant. I believe some people have too much time on their hands.

  2. I missed that last one about imagine no malaria as a waste of time. I am not very deep into that ministry so I would be interested to know what is missing in that idea/dream?

    • You would only wear a stole like a deacon if you were a deacon. Once upon a time we were ordained deacons on the way to being ordained elders, and we were stoled that way. Now, though, if I understand correctly, you are commissioned on the way to being ordained an elder. I suppose commissioned elders would “stole up” the same way as ordained elders. Unless they make provisional stoles (would they be tear-away?)

  3. I should have said, “should I wear a deacon-style stole as a elder as a way of articulating that stole positions do not matter in the grand scheme of discipleship.”

    Secondly, I want all my stoles to be “tearaway Stoles” (trademark Steve and Jason).

  4. Tearaway stoles and paper gowns … worn backwards with the little ties like at the doctor’s office. Birthday suits only underneath would make the ceremonies more interesting although less … distinguished.

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