On Sunday evening DH, my SIL and I had the pleasure of attending the covenanting ceremony for a good and dear friend of ours who was becoming a
lay minister in the United Church of Canada.
Sue had always dreamed of becoming a minister someday but actually spent the first 28 years or so of her working life in banking. She was one of those hard working employees who put in enormous amounts of personal time - without pay, knew her job inside and out, never took a sick day and was a great favourite with her clients and staff. Her walls were covered in commendations, awards and stuff and she even got sent on a trip for being one of the bank's top employees one year. So naturally the bank showed it's gratitude and recognition for such an outstanding employee by eliminating her position and packaging her off. Over the phone. Nice.
Fortunately the bank does have a nice separation package, which included the opportunity to take courses, which they would pay for. So Sue decided that the whole thing was a sign, and decided to follow her dream of studying for the ministry. She's been working hard at her studies for the past couple of years.
Sue often led services at the church that she's been attending here in Georgetown for many years when the regular minister was away. The congregation of that church became her sponsors when she began her training and many of it's members worked with her on her studies. This Fall she was ready to apply for a church of her own. She had several interviews and was chosen to become lay-minister in training for a church in Bramalea.
One would expect member's of Sue's new church to attend the covenanting service of course, but I swear more then half the attendees at the service last night were from her church in Georgetown. One of the Georgetown ladies had made the stole that she was wearing at the ceremony. Two other
Georgetown ladies did readings during the service. Sue began the service with a song, which she sang solo. Sue has an incredible voice and her congregation are getting a bonus in that regard alone. Music is very important to Sue and she makes it a vital part of her ministry.
After the service there was a reception with refreshments and a cake to mark the occasion. Sue's husband and daughters, her Dad and her sisters were all there as well as a bunch of us who have been her friends for many years, and the members of the Georgetown church who were her sponsors. We were all very proud and happy for her.