Last week the Uniting Church in SA celebrated the ordination of 7 people who had been candidates for Minister of the word. This ordination was particularly special because we celebrated the ordination of the first person from South Sudan to be ordained in the Uniting Church of Australia.
Each ordination has it's own feel because the ordinands involved give input to the service. They spend time with the moderator in the weeks leading up to the ordination and discuss the way the service will be shaped. For example, when I was ordained there were a few of us with young children so we wanted children to feel involved in the service. We had bags for the children with card, glue, stickers, textas and envelopes so the children could write notes of encouragement to the ordinands during the service.
This ordination service started with song and dance by the Sundanese Youth Choir in SA. Definitely a great way to start a celebration service.
Our moderator Rev Rob Williams then acknowledged the first people of Australia and welcomed us to the ordination service.
Rev Dr Ian Price preached the word and led us in wondering "What is in your hand?" with the help of some improv actors from the gathered people :-) You might recognise the part of Moses.
The ordination service was very meaningful and it's always a special time to see the people praying over the newly ordained people.
We then shared Holy Communion together. I have no idea how many people were there but you can imagine with 7 ordinands there were 100's of people there. However, time was given so that everyone was able to share in the meal.
Everyone who was ordained on the day already had a placement but this day signified the beginning of their ordained ministry.
For me it was a celebration but also a moment in my day for reflection.I was celebrating one year in my current placement and just over a year since my own ordination.