Saturday, 16 December 2006

Order in the house

The newly ordained Jenny Wilson imparts
a blessing to the Reverend Caroline Pearce.
(Caroline had to be ordained in the US because
at that time (many years ago!!)
Australia did not ordain women priests

In the scheme of things the world cares not an hoot about the fact that Archbishop Jeff Driver will ordain new clergy today.
We choose in our (Anglican/Episcopalian) church to recognise that everyone is called to ministry by sacramentally recognising that some are also called to specific roles of leadership and service. Those of us who are privileged to be bearers of that sacrament know what a great day your ordination is.
Although we have had a terrible time of it in recent years, there has always been a steady stream (sometimes a trickle) of people prepared to respond to God's call to be priests and deacons. Today there are two new priests. Jenny (a finer person you could not hope to meeet), Mike (an enthusiast and passionate about ministry. Three new deacons: Sam (who is the son of two of my parishioners and an articulate, intelligent man with a lovely wife and a beautiful new baby), Barbara (who is quiet, humorous, reflective and will be a great gift musically (opera singer)) and Tracey (who inspires us and attracts them (so it seems to me) to the possibility that church might be fun, enthusiastic, committed and effective.)
Hope for the Church?
Well it would seem that the Holy Spirit is working powerfully in these lives and that can only be good.


Anonymous said...

There's hope for the diocese, going by the Evangelicals in that group. Praise God!

stephen clark said...

I am sure Anonymous that you are having a bit of a lend of me!
If hope for the Church lies in one church party then God help us! I think that we need to regain a sense of the gift that the different traditions have been to the church and warmly embrace that.
Mike, who I don't know well, is I think the one who would identify himself as Evangelical...I don't think Sam would be so easily pigeonholed, and my experience with women is that they don't get so excited by the sort of party divisons as men do. (We shouldn't forget also that the largest "Evangelical" grouping in Australian Anglicanism denies women the right to fully participate in the ordered ministry of the church)
Personally (even though I am a convinced Catholic Anglican) I was just giving thanks that all five are such fine people and not trying to score cheap partisan points.
I think in other words, Anon, you should get over it!!!