Last Sunday’s ordination service was an amazing occasion – and it was quite extraordinary to be right at the centre of it! After 16 years since I first felt the call to ordination, I had a huge feeling of relief throughout… and as I drove to Wichenford for the lunch afterwards, I couldn’t help thinking, “Wow, I’m in! I’ve made it!”
Preparation for the event began with a silent retreat at Holland House, near Pershore. Although I had viewed this with some trepidation it was actually very helpful to be able to get away from the busyness of all the preparations and to reflect on the real reason for being ordained… In fact, it wasn’t entirely silent, as there was a ‘talking space’ which some of us used in the evening, which was a most valuable time for connecting with other curates. The location, on the banks of the Avon near Pershore, also helped!
The day of the ordination began with prayer in the crypt, the oldest part of the Cathedral, which goes back before the Norman disaster to the tenth century and the Anglo-Saxon St. Oswald. It was fitting to be able to pray where believers have gathered to worship God for over a thousand years.
The ordination service itself was a most grand occasion, full of pomp and ceremony, which was a real contrast with what I’m used to at Trinity. Nevertheless it was hard not to feel that this event was marking something significant! What struck me afterwards was how many friends said that they had really enjoyed the service and felt it was done well.
I hugely appreciate the friends and family who came to support me at the ordination. It’s hard to be selective of pictures of the occasion, but as Matt & Jo, Dave S and Dave K have been close friends through the rough times as well as the good I’m including theirs.
After the ordination service we all headed over to Wichenford, for the celebration lunch. The churches in the area had provided most generously and it was also an opportunity for friends and family to meet people from my new community.
The week since then has been most enjoyable, as I have begun my new job. But that will have to wait for another post…