In the last few weeks many people have asked me how I feel about being ordained to the Priesthood on June 24th 2017. It is a difficult question to answer, not because I have any reservations, but because the feeling itself is so difficult to put into words.
I read something recently that spoke to me as I have been reading, praying and trying to ready myself for ordination:
“Being Christian means, first, being baptized. As Williams puts it, ‘baptism takes us where Jesus is.’ To be baptized is to be ‘dropped’ both into the depths of the mystery of Christ’s Passion — and therefore into solidarity with all human suffering—and also into the depths of God’s love, ‘in the depths where the Spirit is re-creating and refreshing human life as God meant it to be.’ Being Christian is about being with Jesus in the deep joy of the Trinity and in the suffering of a devastated world.”1
For me, baptism has always been the great leveller in church. I believe we are each God’s own, much loved, fearfully and wonderfully made, and I somehow, have found myself yielding to the pushing, pulling, sensation of God and those around me, encouraging me into the priesthood. Lucky for me Rowan Williams says “there is no one way of being a priest.”2
I sometimes wish I had known that earlier, because for the longest time, I just couldn’t image that the priesthood would be a fit. People ask me if I’m ready. “As ready as I’ll ever be!” I say. If there is no one way of being a priest, how are we to measure readiness? All I know, is that in my heart, I feel as if I am growing into a skin that fits, and am grateful to all those who have journeyed with me in discernment, and brought me to this place.
So what’s next for us St. James’? I am excited to see where our shared ministry as the baptized disciples and servants of Christ will take us. See you Sunday!
1. http://livingchurch.org/covenant/2014/08/25/book-review-rowan-williams-being-christian/ Accessed 19th June 2017.
2. Being a Priest Today, Exploring Priestly Identity, Rowan Williams, in Christopher Cocksworth, p.4.