“For all that has been, thanks! To all that shall be, yes!” (Dag Hammarskjöld)

Dr Sally Buck, Warden of Lay Ministry, looks back on a time of celebration of lay ministry in Lincoln Cathedral...

Around four hundred of us gathered on Saturday, 27th October for the much anticipated Celebration of Lay Ministries event. Our gathering was opened by Sal McDougall, the Precentor, with the building of small groups of voices into the singing of ‘Alleluia’ (praise God) in three-part harmony. This was a fitting and rousing opening which immediately focused us on the dual aspects of the day; to unite our voices and stories in the praise of God.

We then listened to words from Paul’s second letter to Timothy, which were wonderfully enacted in a way that challenged us to consider what is truth? And how can we hold fast to the truth in a world where loud voices tempt us on a daily basis? Lay ministries, and the discipleship of all believers, were affirmed by David Dadswell (Diocesan Secretary) as he spoke of the value of, and need for, collaborative ministry.

Statements from Readers and Authorised Lay Ministers about the most treasured aspects of their own ministries were heard and we spent time sharing with one another. The morning then moved into a liturgical Morning Prayer service in which Bishop Christopher licensed four new Readers and one Reader transferring from another diocese.

Bishop Nicholas’ sermon re-affirmed the importance of serving our wonderful diocese together. He acknowledged the fact that ministry is not always an easy vocation, and that in our giving thanks, there also needs to be an acknowledgment that what has been will not always have been perfect. As we look to the future, saying “to all that shall be, yes!” he called us to hear the words of St Paul afresh in our generation, to serve God confidently and to “keep on keeping on” as we learn together what it is that we are called to next.

The following were admitted and licensed:

Elizabeth Brown – St Nicholas, Ulceby

Malcolm Gray – St George, Swallowbeck

Christopher Inkley – St Peter & St Paul, Burgh-le-Marsh

Andrew Wilson – Branston with Nocton and Potterhanworth

Transferring to the Diocese of Lincoln:

Lesley Bowring – St Andrew, Immingham