Ordination and Commissioning Service: Achieving Excellence
When addressing the individuals to be commissioned for the work of a deacon or elder and the individuals to be ordained for the work of a deacon or elder at the 2017 Upper New York Annual Conference during the Service of Commissioning and Ordination, Bishop Webb said, “Remember you are called to serve rather than to be served, to proclaim the faith of the church and no other, to look after the concerns of God above all. So we may know you believe yourselves to be called by God and that you profess the Christian faith.”
This year, there were nine commissioned as elders and two commissioned as deacons.
Commissioned for the Work of a Deacon
- Nancy Elizabeth Dibelius
- Rebecca L. Guthrie
Commissioned for the Work of an Elder
- Sung Ah Choi
- Anna Kathryn Blinn Cole
- Patricia M. Hubman
- Marilyn Jane Kasperek
- Eunice Sunae Kim
- Brian P. Lothridge
- David Bradley McKinney
- Rachel Erin Stuart
- Ruth Rosa Warner
This year there were seven elder ordinates and four deacon ordinates.
Ordinates to the Order of Deacon
- Rebecca Lynn Naber
- Carrie Colleen Sturtevant Wolfe
- Molly Joy Turner Golando
Ordinates to the Order of Elder
- Penny Lee Brink
- Abigail Cady Browka
- Susan K. Hadley
- Derek Hollis Hansen
- Gary Mark Kubitz
- Phillip Wayne Phaneuf
- Chad Michael Sayers
Also, Yohan Moon’s orders were recognized as an ordained elder.
The Ordination and Commissioning sermon was given by Dr. Junius Dotson, the General Secretary of Discipleship Ministries.
Dr. Dotson likened the work of a commissioner or ordinate to that of someone running a race; however, he said “The race is not about you, it’s about generations that coming after us….it is a race that requires the investment of your life, but it is a race worth running.”
He said there are three elements that will exemplify that the race the ordinates and commissioners are running through their career path is one of excellence: Readiness, Accountability, and Commitment.
In terms of readiness, Dr. Dotson said “There are things that we have to let go of…God knows who we really are. [One of those things is] your ego so that God can really use you….you’ve got to move away from arrogance so that God can use you.”
Dr. Dotson affirmed, “Our readiness for this amazing race comes by taking off our garments of our own selves and putting on the garments of grace that come from knowing Jesus.”
As far as accountability is concerned, Dr. Dotson told the ordinates and commissioners that they are surrounded by a crowd of great witnesses. He said, “If they can cross the finish line, you and I can cross the finish line too….you are standing on the shoulders of people who have faithfully run this race.”
Dr. Dotson repeated in many different ways that the race of the ordinates and commissioners is not one that will be easy, that there will be difficult circumstances just as there are in life. He said that through these trying times they need to keep their commitment. Dr. Dotson said, “You can NOT quit at the first sign of trouble.”
Dr. Dotson ended his inspiring sermon by saying that “Readiness + Accountability + Commitment = Excellence.”
Bishop Webb ended the Service of Commissioning and Ordination by saying, “Go in peace to serve God and your neighbor in all that you do.”