Thursday, February 12, 2009
Places I've Lived: Columbia Part 1
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I left Face to Face and Birmingham behind in December of 96 to seek a full-time youth position. I moved back home during the search and took a job as youth intern at my home church. Come July, through contacts made with Face to Face, I was moving to Columbia, SC to serve as youth minister at the Kilbourne Park Baptist Church. While there, I lived in a house that was owned by the church and was right behind the church. I could walk to work thru my back fence. Nice.
When I got there, I found out that the house wasn't quite ready yet so I ended up bunking with the pastor. It was a good time to get to know one another. We got along great. The house got finished and I moved in but there was little painting left to do so I did it. Some of the youth helped. It was a nice little house and I enjoyed living there. Since everyone knew where I lived, my door was always open. The youth guys stopped by there pretty frequently.
My time at KPBC was bittersweet. During the "honeymoon" period, everything was going really well. But before too long, everything fell apart. The pastor, who had recently lost his wife, got engaged to a lady he knew as a teenager. They rekindled their friendship and fell in love. I thought it was great. Others in the church disagreed. Turns out she was divorced. Now, the truth of the matter is that her husband was a pastor and cheated on her with the church secretary. But that didn't matter to the stubborn folks who opposed it. They gave the pastor a hard time to the point where he resigned. A vote persuaded him to stay a bit longer but, in the end, he left because they were giving him hell. When he left, he told me to watch my back, they'd be gunning for me next. He wasn't kidding. They came after me with both barrels. I was defiant and stood up to them as much as possible but, in the end, I resigned. I had been having bad headaches. The day I resigned, the headaches ceased.
They let me stay in the house thru the summer. I worked at a youth camp biding my time until the fall. I had a possible job at another church in the Columbia area but, if it worked out, I wouldn't start until the fall. I'll pick up here when I start the next post.