Vision and Vocation

We live in a strange and turbulent time. Our culture and way of life are changing rapidly, and, if anything, this change is guaranteed to accelerate. This reality offers two wonderful opportunities for participating in and imitating the work of Jesus:

  • Our dynamic culture gives us few resources to deal with the spiritual and psychological challenge of rapid change. This is a universal feature of our modern world, and, if we are thoughtful and creative, the Church has the opportunity to answer this reality with the Gospel.
  • The inherited forms of the Church, for better and for worse, are no longer static and given. We live in an age of unprecedented ecclesiological freedom: the Church can be whatever it needs to be to reach hearts and minds with the Gospel. Established institutional infrastructures can work to empower micro-churches and imbue them with a deeper connection to the Great Tradition of Christianity.

I understand my calling to be rooted in pursuing these two emerging ministry opportunities. In this context, I will seek to faithfully and creatively proclaim the Gospel through prayer, sacrament, teaching, and growing communities of faith.

As my wife, Sarah plays an integral role in the unfolding of this vocation, as we seek to live openly and hospitably, and make our common life a model of the love the Christ has for humanity. Sarah has tremendous gifts in listening to and loving people that strengthens our community presence.

We understand our work to stem primarily from our vocation, not our profession. Regardless what job titles we are awarded, we will be committed to building community, developing Christian leaders, and working to connect our present experience to the broader Church and Christian story.

For me, ordination is a step along this journey. It is an affirmation by my community and the Church of my vocation and the work of the Spirit in my life, and the process of pursuing it will connect me with a base of resources and people who are thinking through and working within a similar vocation. And it is, ultimately, a kind of professional accreditation that will open doors for Christian work.

For Sarah, the first step is supporting me during another round of schooling. She also plans to continue to develop her passions and sense of calling, and may seek further professional accreditation further down the road if it seems relevant.

Even with the specific event of ordination on the horizon, it is difficult to say precisely what we will doing after seminary. We are listening to God's call and ready to be flexible. I may move into a college chaplaincy, or seminary teaching, I may join up with some pioneering cultural ministry, or I may end up in a more traditional ministry role in an established church.

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