Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Why do we minister?

In a dream last night I got into an argument with a woman who insisted that, at times, we get into ministry for ourselves instead of for others. I fiercely insisted that ministry was all about others and not about ourselves.

So why do we minister, especially those ordained to ministry? Is there always a little hint of hubris and egotism that goes into the process of donning a little white collar? Is there any way to ensure that we are seeking God's will and not our own when it comes to ordination?

I can't really say anything as I'm not ordained and not even close to it, but I think it's a good question to ask. At some level, do we have to think we are special and are worthy to be an ordained minister?

The question also comes from the experience of the diocese searching for a new bishop. Listening to speeches about why they'd make a good bishop feels, well, egotistical. Not humble at all.

I don't think we have laity anymore pushing people into ordination like in "the old days" (I'm thinking about St. Ambrose... I think).

Is it true humility to resist ordination, fretting about our worthiness, or is it false humility? Can someone seek ordination and be humble at the same time?

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