¶324.9.m: What is the meaning of ordination in the context of the general ministry of the Church?
The yoke is a perfect symbol for the meaning of ordination in the context of the general ministry of the Church. The yoke of ordination of elder in the United Methodist Church bears the weight of very specific responsibilities. The responsibility includes sharing God’s Word, sharing the depth and complexity of its creation, teaching the wide history of translation and theological thought, and turning to Scripture for guidance, help, and comfort. Ordination as elder also includes the responsibility of administering the sacraments, sharing God’s love by preparing an open table, and demonstrating God’s love through water and the spirit. It is also the responsibility of order and leadership within the context of the church. It is a connectional responsibility, I do not walk alone, I am accountable to the Book of Discipline, to the communities I lead, and to my community of fellow pastors. It is the yoke of itinerancy, and the Episcopal system. Finally, ordination, with all Christians, is yoke of service. We are to serve in the World, bringing the light of the Kingdom of God into the darkness in as many ways as we can, as often as we can. Ordination in the context of the church means I am seeking to be yoked to the church, and carry responsibilities that are specific to my call.
You will find and introduction to my BOM theological paperwork here: Doctrinal Exam