Monday, September 1, 2008

The Anglican Communion as Family

In the September issue of The Record, our Diocesan newspaper, Carol Cole Flanagan offers an insightful look at the Anglican Communion as a family -- the sort that can put the "fun" in "dysfunctional."

The article also gives a quick look at some of the ways that the late great rabbi, Ed Friedman, applied family systems theory to organizations. Ed realized that any organization is an organism, and human organizations organize themselves according to certain principles.

Basically, your family works like a family, but so does your workplace, so does the church, so does the choir, and so does your bridge club. That's why Bowen Family Systems Theory, which Murray Bowen developed in his work as a family therapist, has become so widely applied in any number of disciplines. It really explains why groups of people behave the way they do. Understanding why can help you function better in any group, whether that's ECW or the PTA, in the weekly department meeting or in the classroom.

We'll be looking at some of these organizing principles in the Wednesday night class that starts September 10 -- Family Ties That Bind. We start with supper at 6 p.m., then the class runs from 6:30-7:30 p.m.


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