If some of the older church ladies heard that, I'd be scraping them off the floor right now. My personal distaste for potluck dinners is pronounced and easily identified: it's a large social gathering in which I'm expected to mingle. I don't like that whole scenario.
More broadly, though, it's about a way of life that is not part of my reality.
Potluck dinners assume:
- I cook.
- I like to cook.
- I know what to cook.
- I can cook for several people.
- I have ingredients in my home to cook.
- I can cook unhealthy things.
So to cook, sit down, eat a meal and clean up afterwards is a foreign concept for the way I live my life.
I want table fellowship, don't get me wrong. I'd just rather go out to eat or be told very specifically what to bring.
What I don't want is the expectation that table fellowship can only take place in the same way it always has. Or a table fellowship that is a remnant of a time when women were to have strong domestic skills. I don't want table fellowship that resembles family dinners similar to ones I haven't participated in regularly since childhood.
For once, there's nothing resembling theological reflection going on here. It's just my own cry to the church: Make space for someone like me. Figure out a way to be church that doesn't ask me to be a family-oriented cook. That way, I don't feel like such a misfit in a church that is already unsure of what to do with me.
I'm pretty sure some other folks would agree.