...when I followed my call to ordained ministry. You know...the life I had when I was a lobbyist for a very large financial institution, working in "Gucci Gulch" in downtown DC where all the cool lobbyists have their office. I spent an inordinate amount of time working with lawyers (I was the rare lobbyist who wasn't a lawyer), parsing incredibly dense language, while armwrestling with people on Capitol Hill and elsewhere.
So what did I just spend some time on (in between bulletins and planning the service for the Vestry meeting tonight, etc, etc)? Talking with a lawyer about the land that St Middle School is to be gifted. Land that will one day be the home of our church. Joy!
It is a joy, and a generous gift. But the deal is not yet done. This has been dribbling on for a couple of years. Now we are going back and forth with the donor of the land on the precise language that controls our use of it (no, we won't put in a liquor store, but we might put in a day care center at some point, so the language of the covenants for use are important). I am determined to get it buttoned down before this parish calls a permanent vicar. So I've put my quasi-legal hat back on again, working with the wonderful pro bono attorney who is helping us with this, and have girded my loins.
I guess this means that I am using the things I learned in my past life for the benefit of God's church, and that's a good thing, but titrating the percentage of pastoral presence versus hard-ass negotiator in this situation is an interesting challenge. I think I'll let the lawyer take care of the hard-ass stuff, and I'll just be my warm and loving self. (No, don't you dare snicker!)