My ordination into the Corinthian Ministry was rather unusual in that it took place in the setting of a large gazeebo erected in my garden for the purpose during the Covid lockdown on 16 August 2020. It was conducted by Principle Minister for East Lincolnshire, and my good friend, Rev Tony Pendleton and witnessed by a tiny congregation of my wife, Jan, my stepson Mark and his partner Karen and a spiritually minded family friend, Jo. Our small congregation of four and outdoor setting satisfied the current social distancing requirements. Despite a rainstorm drumming on the roof we were able carry out, what is to me, this most sacred rite, the declaration of a Minister’s vows that is the cornerstone and the driving force of any ministry. It is also a staging point in my personal journey, my pilgrimage even. I wish here to share this experience.
That personal journey, for all of us, occupies the whole of our life. In my case it has also included an earlier ordination into the New Christian Spiritualists’ Society Ministry, six years ago from which following a long period of inner reflection, I decided, not without regret, to move on. In this short article what I want to do is to introduce myself to fellow Corinthians and say what I have felt about my ordination following a long life of working and indeed serving Spirit. Hopefully, in later writing I will say more about my long spiritual C.V. but first of all a little more about me. What brought me to working for Spirit with the Corinthians?
To say a bit more about my background, I am retired and my working life has included a variety of jobs. I have been a civil servant, I’ve worked with people with mental health issues, youth offending, school governance, and as a carer for my previous wife who passed over after cancer.
Also, for my mother who in 2017 took her own promotion to Spirit at 97! I have also achieved a degree in psychology from the Open University. In my leisure hours I enjoy a lively interest in art, in history both human and natural. I also concern myself with conservation of the natural world and love all animals. I also enjoy spending time with my large family as a husband, dad and grandad.
I have a lifelong passion for spirituality and it was after gaining my degree in 1997 that I believe, Spirit reached out to me and called me to serve the higher cause, saying now is the time to work together and do some real work. For being a minister is indeed real work. Life, I have to stress, builds you up to your eventual outcome.
Nowhere have I been made more aware of this than during the early weeks of 2020 before my ordination.
For a start I have always looked for better ways of serving. Now the enforced seclusion of helping my wife shield enabled me to reflect deeply on this, I got to the point of saying to God what more can I do in this situation for my fellow man? Use me Lord! I decided to look at moving my Ministry if possible and was able to do so. The date for my ordination was set. Covid was not going to hold my journey up!
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In the month before the service I reflected on Corinthians 1:12, The Gifts of Spirit. I also reflected on how years before I had been invited to join a home circle about the work of Leslie Flint. It was given by my eventual friend and early mentor, John Sanders, a trance healer and the day six weeks later when John invited me to become one of his healing team to try my hand at being a healer. How I had subsequently felt the urge to go to the local Christian Spiritualist churches in Boston and Skegness. Towns local to me to find not just a warm welcome but to attend a development circle and develop as a medium. I thought about the numerous congregations who have supported me and encouraged me. Importantly, I also actually found a version of Christianity which sat well with me.
Another event came to mind, how one evening when my wife was seriously ill and I was hitting despair, I sat with her and my frail and elderly mother, (I was a double carer by now,) when a voice had come to me, “be of good heart,” it said, “you are honoured to be trusted with these precious souls – Just one of several moments when God has walked with me and lifted me from doubt and despair!
As my moment of commitment emerged the energies built around me. I now become aware of my spirit guides, Amaar the Egyptian, Eagle on High the medicine chief, and Brother Matthew my itinerant preacher complete with his spirit donkey. Matthew sang his signature song, “He who Would Valiant be.”
The three of who now joined me as I waited for that spiritual highlight, that special link with God, my ordination. It was not surprising both Tony and I felt the enormous energy at this point. It was indeed a truly spiritual moment as we proceeded with the ceremony and finally went on to enjoy the beautiful buffet that Jan and Jo had so carefully prepared earlier. However, the story does not stop there. What of the future?
It did not take me long to come to realise Spirit was going to use me. How God had risen to my call. My phone went next morning, “I am a Spiritualist and I need to speak to a minister, can you help?” said the voice. I was about to make my first house call, and it is sufficient here to say I have been busy since. As a minister, I have become aware the calling does go beyond the work in performing in church, there is a potential to perform other pastoral duties and to spread the message behind the messages that come with demonstrations of spirit survival. My services virtually 24/7 as and when needed, but there is a message for us all.
That message is, that Covid has given us all the chance to take stock. The outcome of this is a re-evaluation of how we do things. How we live our lives. To appreciate more the value of human life, how we treat each other and the world around us. To be more mindful of life and our spirituality, to really get to know personally
God’s wonderful creation and God himself.
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