Lord Jesus, you are the Good Shepherd who cares for his flock: We ask you to bestow upon your Church the gifts of the Holy Spirit in abundance, and to raise up from among us faithful and able persons called to the ministries of Deacon, Priest, and Bishop. Inspire them to spend and be spent for the sake of the Gospel, and make them holy and loving servants and shepherds of the flock for whom you shed your most precious blood. Grant this for the sake of your love. Amen.BCP 2019, 650.
I’m getting ordained to the priesthood tomorrow, and I’m both humbled and honored to serve Christ’s Church in this way.
Do I feel inherently worthy to be a presbyter? No.
Me, a 28-year-old, an elder?
But I do feel called.
I feel called to “spend and be spent for the sake of the Gospel.”
I feel called to preach the Word of God and administer the Sacraments.
I feel called to equip the saints for the work of ministry, to help make “every Christian a theologian” a tangible reality in local churches.
Would you join with me in praying that I would be a “holy and loving servant and shepherd of the flock for whom [Christ] shed [his] most precious blood”?
Would you borrow the following words from the Prayer Book and pray them for me, Joshua Steele, a sinner?
…Give your grace, we humbly pray, to all who are called to any office and ministry for your people; and so fill them with the truth of your doctrine and clothe them with holiness of life, that they may faithfully serve before you, to the glory of your great Name and for the benefit of your holy Church; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.BCP 2019, 634.