What’s Your Vocation?

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So, during February the CofE is having a real focus on vocation in the church which is fab! This is what they say:

Today and throughout February the Church of England is making a new call to all its members to consider their Vocation. We all have a Vocation to discover and pursue, whether in the Church and in the World and we each have a story of our own Vocation, and our journey so far. We’ll be sharing individual stories of Vocation throughout the month from all parts of the Church.

So if you haven’t come across it yet do keep an eye on their blog which is featuring stories of people finding their calling or vocation in the church and on Twitter check out the Hashtag : #CofECalling

As you may know if you read this blog regularly, I am a big fan of encouraging vocation in the CofE and last year finished my guide to the ‘discernment process in the CofE’ which you can read for free here (or download as a PDF).

So in light of this focus I have had a look back at some of things I wrote when discerning my own vocation, which has been rather comical. All that pain, frustration, denial, and burying my head in the sand! So funny to think now that I am on the verge of getting ordained, how did that even happen?! 

I’ve written about my calling in various places across the blog but this one here was the first thing I publicly wrote in admitting I might actually be called to ministry. If you are just starting to think about it all, do give it a read…

This one, on fighting the call to ordination was written in 2010 and this on ‘10 Reasons Not to be a Vicar‘ makes me laugh. In fact I wrote a response to it 2 years later in 2012 here as well.

I think the key thing is, if you are feeling called to something, don’t ignore it. If it is really God calling you, it won’t just go away so you might as well give in and look at it (saves time and heartache in the long run!). Doesn’t have to be a big song and dance, you might want to start by just asking a few key friends to pray about it or with you. If you still feel something then start to think about approaching your Vicar or DDO.

Whatever you do, it is not an easy process, as you can read about in the discernment guide but it is totally worthwhile and rewarding. I still feel terrified about getting ordained and totally unworthy but I also know it is exactly what I should be doing. 

 

 

Discernment Guide, coming soon…

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The eagle eyed among you may have noticed a new tab on the bar above. I’m afraid for the time being its not yet viewable, I’m just getting some last min checks done, proof reading and so on. But I am so delighted that finally it’s almost ready to go, the ‘Short guide to the discernment process in the Church of England’ – snappy title I know… Some of you will know I started this 2 years ago and I’ve just not had enough time to finish it until now. So with weeks of lying on my back I’ve been able to get the last bits done. I did look originally at the possibility of publishing this in print, but for several reasons I’m going to put it on my blog for now. Firstly, because it has taken so darn long I just want to be able to share it, and secondly because I actually think it will reach more people publishing online rather than in print. Ultimately the reason behind writing this was to help others in the process so the more that can be reached the better!

I aim to publish this publicly on Thursday this week, so check back then if you are interested!

 

DDO update

So… my twitter followers will know that I saw the DDO on Friday for the next step of my discernment jounrey. To be honest I had no idea what to expect. I knew my VC had completed her report on me but I didn’t know what it said. I almost half expected the DDO to send me away for a 6 month placement  or similar, before going further. And I was all prepared for a bit of a battle.. but thankfully, grace abounded and that was not necessary!
So it was 3 hours… but we basically went through his previous report on me and what my VC had written step by step and filled in any gaps. There were a lot of questions and a few ‘ok, anything else…’ prompts in places. It was hard to know what to say as I couldn’t see what he had written in front of him and I think I missed a few key points because of it. For example when asked what I felt ordained ministry was, I didn’t give a list of roles of the Ordained Minister, I told him what my key aims were. So needless to say he told me the Bish will want to hear more on what ordained ministry is. Good heads up and I will gen up.
Also realised I must not ever, EVER,  tell the Bish that I take communion without a minister present as it is against Church Law. Oops.. (note to self, shut mouth on this issue, do not debate whether this is right or not!) more on this in another post..

All in all though, it went well and he expects me to see the Examinig Chaplain in November and the Bish before Christmas, with BAP in the spring… Blimey..

So whilst I still stand by the fact that I will not jump through their hoops unnecessarily, or tell them things they want to hear if they are not true of me, I do feel a little bit of ‘genning up’ is required. It is probably 9 months since I read ‘Being a Priest Today’ and to be honest I did find it rather dull (to say the least), so perhaps now is the time to study it with more interest!