Cleaning Up

Cleaning Up

Mark Laird is a 2015 graduate of Centre for Christian Studies. He recently uncovered some old Review of Learnings forms. (“Review of Learnings” is a regular part of the CCS program, involving peer feedback and personal reflection on strengths and areas of growth.

So I was cleaning out my office the other day getting ready to move for a new job. Don’t tell Ted [Dodd, former CCS program staff] but in that cleaning I was getting rid of a lot of old CCS material from when I was a student. I had moved it all with me from my first congregation to my second, but I now realized that if I hadn’t opened the filing cabinet in the past ten years there was a good chance I wouldn’t open it in the next ten.  

While looking through some of my old assignments I came across a Review of Learnings from probably 13 years ago.  I looked at it, thinking, “What did my old self feel they needed to learn?” And I was surprised.  Under my encouragements I found “I need to work on my skills for chairing a meeting” and “I need to work on my administrative skills.”

“Well, I’ll be,” I thought to myself, “this stuff actually works.”  Thirteen years ago I had no confidence in running a church meeting, nor did I feel I had any admin skills whatsoever.  In case you didn’t know, in the spring of 2023 I finished up my term as President for Western Ontario Waterways Regional council, and the reason I’m currently cleaning out my office is that, starting March 1, 2024, I am going to be the new Executive Minister for Antler River Watershed, Western Ontario Waterways and Horseshoe Falls Regional Councils. 

For those of you who are students and are struggling with aspects of ministry, know you can do it. It takes work, it takes intentionality, but it also takes the acknowledgment of where your growing edges are so that you can grow in them. 

I didn’t always like writing out my Review of Learnings at the time…but am I every glad I did.

Thirteen years ago, Mark Laird (centre) with fellow students Barbara and Ellen and program staff Ted.
Mark chairing the Western Ontario Waterways Regional Council meeting in 2023

Comments: 2

  1. Ted Dodd says:

    ha ha. I read it myself. 🙂 Thanks for sharing this.

  2. Tracy says:

    Love you Mark! So proud of you – really, I’m proud of us all; hard work does pay off!

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