My writing projects come in all shapes and sizes recently. Ongoing work on my novel revision is BIG. Smaller projects are less time consuming. I was asked to come up with some ideas for the copy that would go inside the presentation box of this year’s Christmas in St. Michaels Christmas ornament. I was told what the ornament would be but sworn to secrecy and produced some ideas which may or may not be used. A new ornament is designed each year, usually by my gardening buddy and artist, Joanne Buritsch. That little project just took a couple of hours.
Another project is more fraught. I belong to the Woman’s Club of St. Michaels. We are a social club with a purpose and get together for recreation and fellowship and our fund raising supports a number of community outreach projects. We are particularly proud of the scholarship we give each year to one or more seniors at St. Michaels High School.
At our monthly general meeting we begin with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag. We also recite a short Collect. Or some people do. I don’t know when the Collect became part of the way meetings were started, but it has a distinctly religious tone which I don’t find appropriate for a social club that hopes to be inclusive. I, and many others, stand there and don’t recite the Collect and would like to see it modernized. Others like the religiosity and the history of the words.
Our brave club president called a meeting of those who would like to have a discussion about the collect. About a dozen people showed up. I don’t know what that says about our membership of 170 women. Maybe most people don’t care. I am one of the people who does as I think the current wording doesn’t reflect who we are, nor do I think it is welcoming to potential new members.
So now I am on a committee to work on putting together some suggestions for possibly changing the Collect. That word, by the way, means prayer so that’s a problem for me right from the start, but I totally understand about traditions and how hard change can be. We have people on both sides of the issue who will meet today to continue the discussion.
I have some ideas about a compromise which would be more reflective of who we are as a Woman’s Club and keeps a lot of the traditional language in the original. This small writing project really goes to the heart of how important every word is. It remains to be seen how this will play out. Novel revisions seem easy by comparison. I get to make the final decisions!