Story Highlights

The Commission on Ministry report to the 2014 Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth is submitted by the Rev. Melanie Barbarito. You may download a PDF of this report here.

Members: Melanie Barbarito, Richard Cabes, Cristy Campbell-Furtick, Cynthia Hill, Joy Malmgren, Slavin Manning, Tracie Middleton, Susan Nanna, Henry Penner, Judy Upham, Joel Walker, Andrew Wright

The Discernment Process: 

One-third of the membership of the Commission on Ministry (COM) changed this year.  Three of the new members had no experience on a Commission on Ministry. In order to provide continuity and consistency, we spent time at the beginning of the year once again reviewing the process developed in the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth. This included reviewing and refining the Ordination Process Handbook and the then new Parish Discernment Group Manual.  Throughout the year, we have reviewed and discussed articles gleaned from around The Episcopal Church regarding the ordination process and the kinds of persons now needed by the church as priests and deacons.

Collaboration with Standing Committee:

The COM and the Standing Committee both have roles in the discernment process as defined in the Canons of The Episcopal Church.  The Chair met with the Standing Committee to share and explain the process documents and bring them up to date on the people currently in the process.  The chairs of each were in regular communication.

Conference & Marketing:

As we were unaware of anyone exploring ordination at this time, the COM did not sponsor a discernment conference.  It was felt that the 2013 conference was more about sharing information than it was about discernment.  The Commission would very much like to sponsor an overnight conference in 2015 that is primarily about discernment and not just information.

The COM will have an exhibit at Diocesan Convention to disseminate information about the work of the Commission and to encourage delegates and visitors to engage in a discernment of their own ministry whether it be as a lay person or ordained.

Recommendations:

  • Transitional Deacon – Two
  • Priest – One
  • Candidate for Priesthood – One

As the Chair ends her tenure, she would like to thank Bishop High for his support and guidance, The Rev. Sam McClain for getting the newly formed Commission on Ministry off to a great start, and all the members who have attended so faithfully and participated diligently. Our meetings have been marked by gracious listening, respect for the opinions—often differing—of others, and joy in doing this work for which we have been called.