Reading the conversations on the Methoblog the last few days, I recall this little blast from the past:
General lack of trust within the Church was a pervasive and recurring theme in the majority of interviews. Lack of trust was expressed in many ways, for example, “between the pew and leadership”, personal distrust feeding institutional distrust and vice versa. Trust was cited as one of the most important challenges that the Church faces, it was cited as a force working against a vital connexion and it was cited as a root cause for under-functioning structures and processes of the Church. Sources of distrust ranged from “old wounds” to representative and/or protectionist behaviors and agendas that were not putting the broad interests of the Church first. Lack of accountability was also cited as a root cause of distrust – when people are not accountable for their actions and behaviors, they cannot be trusted. Interviewees related that trust and good intent was not presumed in relationships and frequently the opposite was true. Trust was often mentioned as a leadership issue – particularly in the context of power and authority. People are not trusted with power so they are not given authority – they are not accountable so they are not trusted with power and authority. Often mentioned was the observation that leaders themselves frequently do not demonstrate trust behaviors.