Nancy Streufert Ordained to Priesthood

Nancy Streufert Ordained to Priesthood

by the Rev. Nancy Streufert Associate, Christ Episcopal Church, Eureka

On Saturday, January 31st, I was ordained by Bishop Beisner to the Sacred Order of Priests at Christ Episcopal Church in Eureka. Being consecrated a priest – saying “yes” to God – within the beautiful liturgy, music and setting of my faith community was a glorious affirmation of my understanding of God’s call to me.

To have reached and crossed the threshold to Holy Orders in the Christian journey, after years of discernment, study, hard work, pastoral care experience and prayer, is a testament to persistence, as most of you reading this well know! I thank the congregations at Christ Church, St. Alban’s, Arcata and all those who helped me along the way to discern my call to the priesthood, and for supporting me through the long process with their love, prayers and faithfulness.

But what is far more important than the personal journey of a particular individual is the basic principle in our Anglican tradition that she does not become a priest without being raised up within a particular Church community, as a representative of the baptized, all of whom are first and foremost members of the royal priesthood of the Church, as the Very Rev. Sara Potter highlighted in her eloquent sermon at the ordination.

The Epistle to the Ephesians tells us that “each of us was given grace according to the measure of Christ’s gift. The gifts he gave were that some would be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until all of us come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to maturity, to the measure of the full stature of Christ.” Ordained ministry is specialized ministry, a setting apart for a particular purpose. But that doesn’t mean that it is any more or less important than any other ministry because all of them are needed to build up the Body of Christ.

The examination of the ordinand ends with these words by the Bishop: “May the Lord who has given you the will to do these things give you the grace and power to perform them,” to which the ordinand responds, “Amen.” Words for all of us to live by . . .

Pictured above (from left to right) are Bishop Beisner, the Rev. Nancy Streufert and artist Kathrin Burleson, who painted the icon held here by the Rev. Streufert.


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