Sunday, February 17, 2008

$29.95


when i visited my blog this morning to see if i had any comments (no comments? what's up people?) i saw this ridiculous ad on the sidebar:
get ordained today! perform weddings and funerals in any church. click here to find out more.
right. i just spent 10 years of sweat and prayer and struggle and school and meetings and process and all i had to do was spend $29.95 and i could have been officially ordained?
sigh.
it makes me wonder what is the value of ordination to our culture as a whole. when people are looking for a 'priest,' as they often say, do they really care if that person is ordained or not? i doubt it.
i guess for me the value of the ordination is in the recognition of the church that my vocation is indeed a ministry of word, sacrament, order and service. the book of discipline says it this way, "elders are ordained ministers who, by God's grace, have completed their formal preparation and have been commissioned and served as a probationary member, have been found by the church to be of sound learning, of Christian character, possessing the necessary gifts and evidence of God's grace, and whose call by God to ordination has been confirmed by the church."
that seems to like its worth a whole lot more than $29.95. it is at least $49.95.
in this consumer culture, everything's for sale. and the value of everything is diminished. as a Christian and a sharer of good news, i believe i am called to help people see the real value in some things. i believe part of my good news-telling is in redeeming certain ideas that seem to have lost their worth in our culture: things like hope and trust and, above all, love.
greg.

7 comments:

Pete S said...

I think ordination is easily worth three easy payments of $29.95. Easily. (Although, for me, it's going to be more like three million easy payments of $29.95...)

There, ya happy now? You have been commented upon.

greg. said...

yes, thank you, pete. that's the spirit....

pete s said...

Spirit? Did you say Spirit?

Eric said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Eric said...

I've seen these as well. A couple of years ago I was serving a part time church in central Jersey and also working at an industrial supply company. My friends there knew I was a pastor and working towards ordination. I actually had someone ask me if I had seen these posts and suggested that it appeared that there were easier roads than the one I am on.

PS thanks for the comment on my blog, it encouraged me to enter a new post today!

julid said...

The bishop came to spruce run today. galen preached a message that will linger for a long time. holly wrote and performed a song that blew the walls out of that place. ella celebrated in her family of believers. greg was accepted for ordination. guess this week was worth something. maybe not $29.95, but something.

Crafty P said...

i think you're ordination is more in the range of priceless.

i've been thinking about getting ordained myself. I didn't realize it was such a bargain. i mean, I do everything else, why not add reverend to my name, right?

ummm..... not right.