Friday, February 18, 2005

Today in Two Parts 2

For the past two days I have been working with two universities in the Association. They have a common religious heritage and are thinking about how to accomplish two goals - to improve their Christian mission and at the same time to organize their activities more efficiently.

Yesterday, I did a presentation for one board where I talked about the changes in authority discussed earlier in this blog. As I have thought about it two things have been added. First - Craig's list is another manifestation. Second, in a discussion with a colleague during the week he came up with the following phrase "Irreversable intermediation replaces uncertain incrementalism" - when I heard it - although I was a bit uncertain about whether I wanted to use the jargon, I was annoyed at myself at not thinking about this in terms of disintermediation. (i.e. Withdrawal of funds from intermediary financial institutions, such as banks and savings and loan associations, in order to invest in instruments yielding a higher return.) - the term has a specific usage as above but also has come to mean the changes we have experienced in markets.

Today, a group from both campuses started a discussion about linking their two institutions. The session began in a way that is often done in Christian institutions with a meditation. One key person recounted a more modern day version of the parable of the talents - remember the land owner who gives three servants varying amounts of money - one invests it, the second a bit less and the third buries it in the ground. When the master returns he is grumpy at the third. As Matthew tells it we then come to a conclusion -

For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. Matthew 25:29

As the person recounted it he came to a slightly different conclusion. That is that we are expected to use our talents and to take risk. Indeed if you think about it that is what the parable is trying to tell us. We each have gifts that we should use.

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