Do ordinations require consenting adults?
Let me begin by congratulating The Postulant. Will the blogger take on a new nom de plume? Yes, “The Postulant” is now surely “The Candidate.”
Nowhere does it say that ordination invitations can’t be “in a tongue not understanded of the people,” so this one is in Latin. I like that. Who could accuse ECUSA of being a “new religion” when ordination invites are sent in Latin? Well, anyone who reads the first line of this one, and many other invitations. The Postulant’s invitation begins with Deo volente populoque consentiente. God willing and the people consenting. Most ordination invitations seem to start that way now.
Remember the old days? “God willing, the Right Reverend…” Back in the day, there were no people in the first line. I don’t think they should be there.
It’s not that I believe people aren’t important. It’s not that I dismiss the people’s consent and participation in liturgy. But it’s redundant. If you believe in God’s will — and if you didn’t, why have the line there — then the people’s consent, or lack thereof, will also be God’s will. So you don’t really need that line. More to the point, it seems theologically counterproductive. It equates the people’s consent with God’s will. This is one of the great problems of the 21st century church. We’ve elevated ourselves to God’s level. Or more likely, we’ve demoted God to our level.
I’ve been meaning to rant about this for some time now. It really has nothing to do with The Postulant. The wording may have been prescribed in some diocesan policy or something. I wish The Postulant all the best. His ordination will be a great day for the church, God willing. If I knew the postulant personally, I know just what I would get him.