I'm helping out again with our parish's Alpha program. I love Alpha. This time around I'm leading with a guy who gets under my skin and I'm not sure what the best approach is.
One slice of it is the PERIL factor, in which PERIL stands for Phone Encroachment: Really Irritating and Long-Lasting. Every single year phones get a little more ubiquitous. I do not remember, in the first session of Alpha that I helped with, that people would pull out their phones and scroll through them for chunks of time during dinner, or during small-group discussions. But it happens these days, even with someone who is supposed to be leading discussion.
Another piece of it is the politically sensitive nuggets that he drops into our conversations. In my view Alpha is just not the place for a conversation about the Mueller investigation, or about gun control legislation.
The thing is, I don't know this guy well at all. It would feel weird for me to address it directly with him. It would feel weird for me to bring it up with the coordinator, too, but maybe that's the sensible thing to do. It doesn't have to be a tattle-y message-- I can send a low-key email that says "Maybe before our next meeting it's worth issuing a reminder about xyz."
The good news is that I'm really enjoying everybody else at my table, and we had a lovely balanced conversation tonight about a terrific video.