Our Common Calling – 28 February 2018

This simple image of a dove is evocative of the Spirit rising after blessing the baptised. The dove consists of water and life, and as it rises suggests hope and a new beginning.

We begin in Christ at our baptism, God giving us that day more than we can ask or imagine. All that we need to make us holy and to equip us for the ministries to which we are all called has been given to us. From our baptism the Spirit is present within us, but comes to renew us again and again throughout our Christian lives.

For all of us there are times when we come to God seeking renewal. Only if God sends the Spirit upon us will we be able to do that to which we are called. Our need for God should humble us, causing us to be aware of our dependence upon God’s mercy and grace.

The consecration of a new bishop is such a time. How could anyone exercise such a ministry without God’s assistance? But a bishop does not minister alone but from the midst of the people of God. All who are called to serve in a diocese should look to God again at such a time. We pray not for the renewal of one, but of all.

The Collect for all the faithful people of God from the Consecration Service.

Almighty and everliving God,
by whose Spirit the whole body of your faithful people is governed and sanctified: hear our prayer which we offer for all members of your holy Church;
That in their vocation and ministry they may serve you in holiness and truth to the glory of your name;
Through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.