We held a congregational meeting. The plan was to have special engaging activities centered around origami sailboats as part of an extended metaphor. I wondered in the planning meetings whether our landlocked population would grasp the significance of the sailboats.

Almost nobody did. Posters announcing the meeting went up with “Let’s Go Sailing” as the enormous title, and people were mystified.

At the meeting, the leaders read people a PowerPoint which was supposed to have rotated silently in the background. Instead, they passed around a microphone and had different people read the slides, and we applauded each one. Naturally, this took up all the available time — 30 minutes. 30 minutes of listening to people read aloud a PowerPoint based on the Annual Report, which we had all received in an email the previous day.

I felt this was a wasted and unsuccessful meeting.

But maybe there were people who were energized by the chance to clap for the staff and all the assorted ministries, and to look at random snapshots of people they went to church with. Maybe they find this inspiring. Maybe it was fun for them to have lunch with one another, regardless of the program.