Tag: vocation

“just a deacon…?”

So one of the things over heard at my friends ordination on thursday was: “So he’s just being ordained as a deacon?”  To which the woman sitting next to me whispers: “Just a deacon?”  She being in the final stages of her process to be ordained to the deaconate.  For the non-Episcopalians reading this there are two types of deacons in the Episcopal Church.  There is a vocational deaconate…which is the folks that are called to the deaconate as a vocation.  And there is the transitional deaconate, which is what my friend was ordained to.  This is a period of approx. six months before being ordained to the “full” priesthood.

So at my monthly discernment committee meeting on friday, I was telling the members about being at the ordination.  However, none of us were quite sure what the purpose of the transitional deaconate.  So I decided to email my friend and ask him what he thought about it. 

His simple answer was it was a time on going discerment.  A period of time for the church and yourself to make sure that this “call” is the right thing after all.  More importantly (at least in his opinion), is that it gives you chance to begin to identify with the sense of servanthood and servent leadership that is critical for clergy.  I like that idea.

One of the things I did this weekend is re-read the ordination services for both the deaconate and the priesthood.  That was a good thing for me to do…to look at the differences in the service and apply them to what I see my call being.  That however will have to be touched on in a future post. 

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/just-a-deacon/

vocation

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, vocation is:

1. a. The action on the part of God of calling a person to exercise some special function, especially of a spiritual nature, or to fill a certain position; divine influence or guidance towards a definite (esp. religious) career; the fact of being so called or directed towards a special work in life; natural tendency to, or fitness for, such work.

b. The action on the part of God (or Christ) of calling persons or mankind to a state of salvation or union with Himself; the fact or condition of being so called.

2. a. The particular function or station to which a person is called by God; a mode of life or sphere of action regarded as so determined.

b. One’s ordinary occupation, business, or profession.

For at least six years I have felt that my call to the priesthood is to be my vocation. More specifily it will be the vocation of my life. It wasn’t until just a few months ago that I even had an idea of what a vocation I could do if I didn’t head off to seminary and become a priest.

One of my main tasks during this process is to convey to the people along the path that the priesthood is my vocation.

In my mind…its not a matter of if I become a priest, but when I become a priest. I can’t see a reality without that as my vocation. Sure, I could do something else and be succesfull and happy. But something would always be incomplete.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/vocation/