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Normal for ....

There is a really horrid expression 'normal for Norfolk' which is used derogatively to describe people who are not exactly over-endowed with intellect.  The was a similar expression in Dibley and I recall preaching an alternative interpretation as part of a challenge to a general underlying negativity I experienced in my early days.  But, there are underlying norms everywhere, and it can take a while to discover them, as I am beginning to realise when my assumptions/presuppositions don't match those of others.

One big difference in this corner of River City is that most church people have email (about 75% according to the directory) whereas in Dibley most did not (about 25%).  Inevitably each of these impacts how information is communicated and what people expect.  In each each case, it also raises questions about inclusion and exclusion and about what is communicated by what medium.  At one church I worked with (neither of the above) one Deacon had information sent to her son's email address, about which I was always unhappy, but it was the only way she could be kept in the loop as everything was done by email.  When I first went to Dibley I used to hand deliver copies of any emails to the two non-email deacons, and everything for general consumption was done on paper.

I guess what I am being reminded is that "Normal for Anytown Baptist Church" is not the same as normal for any Baptist church in any aspect, whether administrative, worship or whatever.  It keeps me on my toes anyway!


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