Adventist Careerists

There was a very interesting article in The Atlantic recently detailing some of the problems and issues facing America’s military. It’s called The Tragedy of the American Military.

The following quote from the article, which talks about military leaders making bad decisions, intrigued me because I’ve seen so many Adventist leaders make bad decisions for similar reasons:

“…it’s become populated, especially at the highest ranks, by careerists, people who have gotten where they are by checking all the boxes and not taking risks,” he told me. “Some of the finest officers I knew were lieutenants who knew they were getting out, so weren’t afraid to make the right decision. I know an awful lot of senior officers who are very afraid to make a tough choice because they’re worried how it will look on their fitness report.” This may sound like a complaint about life in any big organization, but it’s something more. There’s no rival Army or Marine Corps you can switch to for a new start. There’s almost no surmounting an error or a black mark on the fitness or evaluation reports that are the basis for promotions.”

The Adventist church is crammed full of careerists. I already knew that. But this puts into words what I have always felt bit didn’t really know how to express.

The part that really gets me, though, is that last sentence: “There’s no rival Army or Marine Corps you can switch to for a new start. There’s almost no surmounting an error or a black mark on the fitness or evaluation reports that are the basis for promotions.”

It’s exactly the same within the Adventist church. Employees feel like there are no alternatives. I’ve written about this in the past here on this blog. It’s the thin green line (money) that employees can’t cross and still remain employed. It’s a major factor in why nothing seems to change for the better within the denomination.

It’s also a big part of why the Adventist denomination isn’t very useful to me anymore. I’m not looking to be a careerist or to support careerists within the church.

In my experience, careerists are ruining the Adventist church. There’s a pretty simple step we could take to make things better: set term limits for church offices.

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