Walk the Halls Slowly

I have a problem. Yup. I do. Okay, I have many problems, but we’ll focus on one. I like my office space. I like it too much. Let me share with you a typical day.

I arrive to my office in the morning. I briefly say hello from a distance to the people that are already at work and I walk straight into my office. I hang up my jacket. I pull out my laptop and plug it in. I sit in my chair and look at my calendar of action items I’m supposed to do that day. I get working on the tasks. I come out of the office from time to time for specific reasons: meetings, food, to talk to someone I’m working on a project with, etc. But then I go back into my office. I keep trucking through my list of things to do that day. Maybe I have a meeting or two off-site. But once I come back, I go straight into my office and keep doing what I need to do.

But am I really doing what I need to do?

The day ends and I go home, realizing that I haven’t even tried to connect with the people I work with on a daily basis. They’ve been working all day at the office, too. Did we connect? No.

That’s my problem. I get so focused on the ambitious task list I have created for myself that I don’t take the time to connect with the others I work with. Why? Because my ambitious task list (which I totally control) forbids me from connecting with people.

This has got to change. The number one thing that I need to add to my ambitious task list: walk the halls slowly.

I’ve talked about “walking the halls slowly” before, but I want to share with you specifically what I mean by it and the many reasons why it is important.

Walking the halls slowly is about wandering the office or church and intentionally connecting with those we work and minister with. I work at a ministry office of 70 people, so, for me this means taking time to connect with people in other departments besides my own. This also means connecting with different groups that are meeting on site and getting to know people.

Here are some reasons why walking the halls slowly is important:

  • I know what’s going on in people’s lives, both personally and professionally.
  • I can “catch” people doing things right and immediately affirm them.
  • I show others that I am approachable.
  • I can feel out the morale of those I minister with.
  • I meet new people I never knew before.
  • I end up collaborating more with others because I intentionally connected with them.

There are more reasons, but these are just a few. Try it. Walk the halls slowly at least once this week and see how it can make a difference.

How does walking the halls slowly make a difference in your ministry?


John Rinaldo

As the Business Manager at St. Catherine Catholic Church in Morgan Hill, CA, Dr. John Rinaldo serves as the administrator over operations and finances for the parish in support of all parish ministries. Previously, John served as the Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry for the Diocese of San Jose, empowering parish communities to minister to the needs of youth and young adults. John is also an adjunct professor at Santa Clara University teaching pastoral ministry courses to graduate students.

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