from the blog The Orthodox Clergy Wife. I only found this a little funny. Mostly sad.
I found this in an old e-mail. I know the ‘perfect priest’ is an adaptation of ‘perfect pastor’ lists that have been around for ages, but am not sure where the additions about the Presbytera originally appeared. Enjoy:
The Perfect Priest and the Perfect Presbytera
The Perfect Priest preaches exactly 10 minutes. He condemns sin roundly, but never hurts anyone’s feelings. He works from 8:00 a.m. until midnight, and is also the church’s janitor.
*The Perfect Presbytera is very articulate. She never says a word at church meetings. She has a full-time, high-paying career, and home schools at least 3 kids. She never misses a church service, fundraiser or social event.
The Perfect Priest makes $140.00 per week, wears gold clothes, drives a good car, buys good books, and donates $1000.00 to the parish. He is 30 years old and has 40 years experience.
*The Perfect Presbytera drives her kids to their lessons in a late model mini-van that won’t embarrass the congregation, in between washing clothes in ecologically correct laundry detergent, making healthy balanced meals from scratch, and recycling all the bottles, boxes and cans in the house (view this page to see how these recycling process is done commercially).
He is above all else handsome.
* The Perfect Presbytera stands up for the sanctity of marriage. She never minds all those females flocking around her handsome husband, or him being home late from church meetings night after night. After all, she too is unspeakably gorgeous. She never wears any makeup or spends money that should go to the poor on a hairdresser. She is always dressed in the height of fashion. Her babushka scarf, loafers and ankle-length skirts come from the Thrift Shop.
The Perfect Priest has a burning desire to work with teenagers, and he spends most of his time with senior citizens.
*The Perfect Presbytera is totally devoted to motherhood. She spends all her time visiting the shut-ins, calling people who were away from liturgy last week, and volunteering in the community. She behaves modestly, keeping in the background at church. She directs the choir, co-ordinates the Sunday School, leads the women’s group and organizes the perogie-making bee.
He smiles all the time with a straight face, because he has a sense of humor that keeps him seriously dedicated to his parish. He makes 20 calls a day to his people and is always in his office to be handy when needed. The Perfect Priest always has time for the parish council and all its committees and sub-committees.
* The Perfect Presbytera is completely open with parishoners about her personal struggles. They never hear a word of complaint from her. She certainly does not show favoritism. She is very close friends with the people in the parish who matter.
He never misses the meeting of any parish organization and he is always busy evangelizing the unchurched.
* The Perfect Presbytera is irreproachable when it comes to minding her own business. She makes sure Father is informed about everyone in the parish who is sick, troubled, or annoyed at the footwear choices of the altar servers.
The Perfect Priest is always in the next parish over!
*Strangely enough, even the Perfect Priest in the next parish over doesn’t seem to have a Perfect Presbytera!
Actually, the Perfect priest is one who is willing to give up his life for Christ if necessary…..that’s the Perfect Priest!!
*Couldn’t say it better re: the Perfect Presbytera either ….;-)
lol … tears …
George Patsourakos says
Although many of the duties and responsibilities described in this article are humorous, many of them are true. The fact is that an effective priest and presvytera spend a great amount of their time for the church.
As for the footwear choices of the altar servers, I love the little black shoes. I have a pair of my own. My husband used to tease me about them.
Seriously, there is no doubt in my mind that a priest and his wife devote a great deal of time to the Church. It’s admirable. From what I understand of the Eastern Orthodox Church, it is a way of life – a lifestyle. The way I see it, serving others is serving God. God bless all those priests and presbyteras who love those they serve! And, thank you.
David Šili says
Sooo true… It is funny, but in the same time it reveals the struggles the priest’s have (no matter which devotion they serve). In the same time we need to be people that others can look up to, and in the same time not be that distant and detached from this world.
I liked especially the following: “The Perfect Priest has a burning desire to work with teenagers, and he spends most of his time with senior citizens.”
Can’t wait to show this to my wife