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Well Now, What's This All About?

I imagine the small, meager readership of this blog who know me are now wondering "WOW, where did that come from?"  (If you don't understand, then you have some catch-up reading to do).

Some time ago, my friend and priest Bob Malm suggested if I could see myself presiding at the Eucharist that I might have a call to the priesthood.  Since then, from time to time while serving at or around the altar or singing from the choir loft of Grace Church, I would try to visualize myself in that place in that role.  But I never saw it.  And never "seeing" myself celebrating Holy Communion led me to believe my call to ministry is among the Laity.  There I've worked and ministered, and having been ministered to by so many, it has been good and life-giving.

This past weekend, while helping a new discernment group form at the parish church that mostly raised me in the faith, I was challenged to not "cop out" by listening to what others said I should do, but that I should listen to myself about who and what God wants me to be.  For Him.  That, and encouragement given through the group's discernment of Signs of the Spirit in me that there is Joy and Energy in my work with Youth in the church, I revisited the image offered by Bob.

This time though, I imagined a "church without walls" where God could use me in any way He needed.  Taking myself outside Grace Church with the aid of my new spiritual optical device, I saw a gathering of young people studying about, praying to and praising God on a mountain (it was Shrine Mont) and I was there with them.  I also saw kids and adults sleeping on the floor of a church's parish hall resting in the Spirit on a retreat weekend (maybe a Happening, a diocesan camp or a weekend) and I was there too.  I then imagined a evening/afternoon seminar with couples approaching a shared life together as we explored the Vocation of Marriage and the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony (Chrissie and I were there together).  And I also saw myself among the halls of a hospital, in the service bay of an Emergency Room, at the bedside of a child, trying to offer comforting words and assurances that God was with us.  In all these ways, and in all these places, I was serving God as a priest in His Church.  Taking the bread and breaking it, raising the cup and blessing it, and then offering them as an intimate invitation to join together in communion with our Lord and Savior.  I see it now. 

Do you see it in me?  Can you imagine me in this way?  If you're reading this, I would very much appreciate hearing from you.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
mightyelmo
Jan. 30th, 2007 09:03 pm (UTC)
"And I also saw myself among the halls of a hospital, in the service bay of an Emergency Room, at the bedside of a child, trying to offer comforting words and assurances that God was with us."

Was that me?
romelover
Jan. 31st, 2007 03:20 am (UTC)
Wither thou goest....
I shall go. And we will travel on together.

let the good times roll.
I love you.
el1966
Jan. 31st, 2007 03:35 pm (UTC)
I can see it and I can imagine you that way. I can also see all those things in a non-ordained life too. How did you feel when you saw these things? Anticipation? Fear? Joy? I know that you have said that people have often told you that you should be a priest, and I sense that you have resisted being "told" what to do, so I congratulate you for continuing to explore and listen along this line. I know that no matter what the end result, you will land in the path God wants for you. - Eleanor
(Anonymous)
Feb. 2nd, 2007 03:59 pm (UTC)
A view from the "outside"
I can definitely see it....in fact it had crossed my mind before this posting. You possess many of the qualities I find so important in a priest - love of God, kindness, empathy, respect, dedication, joy, enthusiasm, and good communication skills (you know, for the marathon sermon!)
BY
(Anonymous)
Feb. 2nd, 2007 08:42 pm (UTC)
from Anne (who doesn't know how to work the ID part of this): It may be that you couldn't see this vision before now because this ministry wasn't yet ready to be born in you. Now that you have seen it, I suspect you won't be able to settle until it comes to life--whether that means being a priest, or whether it's being part of the priesthood of all believers in a new way. Whichever one, you're in for quite a ride. I'm glad to be around for at least part of the journey. Godspeed!
bkirby7195
Feb. 3rd, 2007 01:55 pm (UTC)
Of course
David,
From the moment I saw the start of your journal I thought that you were discerning a call to the priesthood. Guess you were much more surprised than I (and others) were!
Another poster was right: I could see all those things in a non-ordained life, too. What you (and God) have to decide is if being ordained will help you further those ministries in a way that a lay minister could not.
You've always been a "pastor" to others, anyway (I remember "Dear Abby Dave" from the EE talks!)
God bless you on your journey.

In Him,
Beth
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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