By Matt Keppel
“Dammit Jim, I’m a Doctor!” It’s quick, simple, and absolutely classic. For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, go watch some Star Trek with the original cast – yeah, I know there’s names for these things, but I’m not going to bely my utter nerdiness… yet. But what does it mean? In all the crazy adventures that Captain Kirk and the USS Enterprise encounter, Dr. McCoy, the ship’s surgeon, gets thrown into all sorts of situations that have nothing to do with being a doctor, but somehow he is the perfect person to save the day. Ultimately, Spock and Kirk come to McCoy to address the strange and unusual more often than not.
If you have ever worked for the Church, in any capacity, you know exactly where I’m going here. There are few other organizations that run entirely on the versatility of their employees like the Catholic Church. Myself, I have worked as a teacher and volunteered in youth ministry, but functioned as a graphic designer, carpool monitor, after-school babysitter, copy jockey, and IT specialist on top of being a math and religion teacher – my degree is in philosophy and theology. Please don’t misunderstand what I am saying, this is not a complaint! I love going to work and not knowing quite what will be asked of me each day. I consider it a wonderful part of the adventure of working in the Church. However, what I am asking for is patience… I think we all are actually.
On behalf of everyone who works for the Catholic Church, we apologize for when things don’t go quite as expected, and we wish too that things ran more smoothly! The reality is that our organizations are nearly all understaffed and overworked. On the whole, we do our best, but there are simply not enough hours in the day to do everything. In addition to patience, another request: If you can find it in your heart the time and energy to volunteer, do so. Search your heart; see where you may be called. Maybe it’s helping with youth ministry, working on the finance council, or even making copies for teachers: every little bit helps. You may be a doctor, but, you certainly have skills that go beyond that of the medical field – offer them in service!