I want to be more involved, on a volunteer basis, with my church. I love our priest and our community, and the parish has given so much to my family and me over the years: support during family illness and joy at the successes of our children.

But I need to be honest. I really can’t stand so many of the people who make church work their unpaid career. Every time I’ve joined a committee, I’ve found myself frustrated by the inefficiency, the lack of order, the out-and-out nuttiness of so many of my fellow volunteers – people who always seem to have personal or political or petty axes to grind, or simply not enough other stuff in their lives to do — and I always end up quitting in disgust.

Can’t I just write checks instead?

— Outsider