In case of emergency, notify an Episcopal priest
There’s a thoughtful gem is on the front page of Anglicans Online this week. Here’s an excerpt:
…this week that we found the small silver charm shown [here]. IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY PLEASE NOTIFY AN EPISCOPAL PRIEST it says, echoing down the decades since its creation the firm faith and church-attachment of the person who once wore it. For all our prayer for ordinands this Embertide and all our attachment to Anglicanism, though, we’re not sure that we could ever wear such a tag in the hope that someone happening upon our unconscious bodies would immediately telephone the rector of Christ Church, Emerald City. We’d much prefer such a Good Samaritan notify a tiny handful of people: our spouses, a close friend or two, and a short list of clergy-friends with whom we’d want to spend time during a critical emergency. This is not just because we’re private and picky, but because we’re slightly afraid sometimes of the decisions made by ordination selection committees, and of the political germs that are perhaps as likely to be brought into the sickroom as pastoral care and prayer.
This Embertide we’ve resolved to do something more than only praying for those about to be ordained, or those who find themselves called to ministerial roles in the church. We’ve decided to do our best to support theological education in colleges and seminaries; to work to foster a healthier spirit in our church that may lead to lower rates of clergy burnout; to encourage urgent measures to ameliorate seminary-debt; and to communicate better with the several ministers God has vouchsafed to us—in particular by making sure that they have fresh jars of apple butter, by finding out better what they and we need for godlier life together, and by thanking them for heeding their calls.
We’re not sure that we’ll be wearing a sterling-silver Anglican dogtag come Whitsun Embertide, but we are sure that there are some positive changes to be made with respect to interaction across and among the several orders of churchfolk.
Amen, on all counts.