by: Gillian Ford
contributor: Rev. Ken Brown
As an ongoing Trinity staff development exercise, we have been discussing psychological safety. Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmonson coined the phrase and in her book Teaming she writes: “psychological safety makes it possible to give tough feedback and have difficult conversations without the need to tiptoe around the truth. In psychologically safe environments people believe that if they make a mistake others will not penalize or think less of them for it. They also believe that others will not resent or humiliate them when they asked for help or information. This belief comes about when people both trust and respect each other and it produces a sense of confidence that the group won’t embarrass reject or punish someone for speaking up.” (Dare to Lead, Brene Brown).
I highlight the term psychological safety because we aspire to create such a space to discuss our way forward to develop a statement of inclusivity in the wake of the United Methodist Church’s Special Session of the General Conference last month. I especially want to extend an invitation to persons of the LBGTQIA+ to attend this congregation wide conversation. Why? Because I respect and acknowledge that the Conference’s immediate outcome has been harmful to LBGTQIA+ persons who are members at Trinity that I have spoken to. I am aware that, in general, Trinity has a broad capacity to be welcoming–so let’s have a conversation together.
I look forward to seeing all who can make it next Saturday, March 23 to "Finding Our Way Forward" with Rev. Jim Gulley. Together, Rev. Gulley and I will facilitate our time together as we continue to discern our next steps as a congregation. I hope you will join us. Learn more here.