Ordination in the Lindisfarne Community
Christians have recognized since earliest times that God calls some amongst them to ordained ministry — that is, ministry which the church approves and authorizes through the laying on of hands.
By the end of the first century it was generally recognized that there were three orders of ministry: bishops, presbyters/priests and deacons.
The three orders have three separate callings and should be recognized as such (ie. they are not a career structure to move through)
Bishop (episkopos) . . . oversight, planting, envisioning, leading leaders, teaching and training, ordaining, confirming — a symbol of unity in the church
Presbyter/Priest (presbyteros) . . . leaders of local Eucharistic churches/communities, collegial (with bishop, other presbyters and deacons) — a symbol of Christ among the people of God
Deacon (diakonos) . . . other servant ministries, (evangelism, counseling, intercession, social ministries, care of the elderly, children’s work, campus ministry, prison ministry; ministries which are not centered on the Eucharist) — a symbol of the servant nature of the whole church of God
It is important to acknowledge that all ministry is rooted in the diakonos. Bishops and presbyters remain deacons.
The Call of God
• A personal sense that God is calling you into ordained ministry.
• Embryonic gifts in the area to which you feel called. You will, most likely, already be beginning to function in your area of ministry.
• A recognition of the same by your church and its leaders.
• If you are in a committed relationship, the support of your partner.
• A willingness to undergo extensive training, study and mentoring.
Important Note: The completion of a course of study does not itself guarantee ordination. There must also be evidence of personal growth, development of ministry and gift, and a continued realization of God’s call. Ordination requires the confirmation of the above by the school’s directors and others involved in the candidates training.