Tuesdays are spent driving off for a night class that I have somewhere. It takes about 45 mins to get there. It’s not actually the ideal situation but that’s what a student has to do to get on with his studies and in the hope of finishing it soon.
The class I’m taking is on Church Governance. Things to do with issues concerning how to register a church in the context like Malaysia and all that stuff. I just call them legal stuff that is more like jargon to me.
It’s not that class is bad. It’s because I’m illiterate in stuff like this having no background in this sort of thing. I try my best to absorb as much as I can. Last Tuesday was the third lesson so I guess I’m somewhat coping for that matter.
Listening to the lectures it sort of dawned on me on how dumb I am in understanding stuff relating to administration and governance. Important as they are, I can’t help it. It feels like a 5 year old listening to grownups having a conversation.
Well thinking through it makes me reflect on the current church situation back in East Malaysia. Where a lot of the pastors are uneducated in the field of governance with all the legal and business jargons put up. I don’t doubt their importance though. We need manageable structures that would help us move towards a common vision.
So what pastors in the context of East Malaysian, because most have no knowledge about these things, the in turn entrust the structuring and governing to some trusted few, whom one might consider as leadership material. People who do the right thing when they are seen. Well some of them fall in this category, some don’t.
Because of this, some of those who are put in a position of authority in these matters where the pastor is clueless most, if not all, tend to gobble up all the power. They do this because they know the pastors don’t know a rats ass about the stuff they are discussing, and that’s a bad thing. They will tend to rule with an iron fist. And pastors, if they do have some sort of feeling that things are going wrong don’t have the curtsy to ask questions on the accountability of their leaders, the so called experts.
I see it clearly now the case with churches back home. Where even with a good governing system to ‘manage’ things in the local church, if leaders are not transparent, in a way that people can question them and they don’t get offended, things will almost always go wrong.
Leadership without transparency is leadership down the drain.