She discusses the case of Mary Winkler, the Baptist minister's wife in Tennessee who killed her husband in 2006. Church members all said she was "the perfect pastor's wife" and that "they had no problems, as far as we knew." Those congregants and Winkler's lawyers all made statements about her, but Hileman wants to know where her friends and family were. Did she have anyone with whom she shared her private pain?
Hileman's piece is definitely worth the read, but I'll share the money quote here, in case you don't have time to read the whole article:
The vast majority of pastors state that the ministry is detrimental to
their families. One counselor, who sees a large number of clergy and clergy
spouses in his practice, says that United Methodist clergy-wives are the
angriest people he sees. It is ironic that in a connectional system such as
the United Methodist Church, we and our families have so few
This is the quote that I always remember from this article. "...the angriest people he sees..." I try not to let that be a self-fulfilling prophesy, but I think about it whenever I feel angry, and I wonder what it is about the UMC in particular that makes clergy-wives so angry. Is it the lack of choice in the appointment process? Is it the frequency of moves? What do you think?