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Schmidt to be ordained Sunday in Escanaba

March 18, 2016

Campus community is invited to attend the celebration

Finlandia University Campus Pastor Soren Schmidt will soon be Rev. Soren Schmidt, Campus Pastor as he goes through the final steps of his calling to become ordained in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Schmidt will be ordained Sunday at 3 p.m. at Christ the King Lutheran Church in Escanaba. Anyone interested in attending is invited. Below is information Soren has provided on the calling:

I am called in vocation to this ministry here at Finlandia University and with the ELCA.

Soren Schmidt Finlandia UniversityOrdained ministers of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America are called to the ministry of word and sacrament. Together with the whole people of God they are part of the ministry of the baptized. Ordained ministers are called to be faithful to Jesus Christ, knowledgeable of the word of God and the confessions of this church, respectful of the people of God and responsive to the needs of a changing world. They are called to give leadership to the congregations and other ministries of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America believes that the Holy Spirit “calls, gathers, enlightens and makes holy the whole Christian church on earth and preserves it in union with Jesus Christ in the one true faith” (Small Catechism, Article 3). It is the Spirit that provides the church with those persons who are enabled by God to lead the church in carrying out the ministry and mission of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

This church confesses that the office of ordained ministry, “the ministry of teaching the gospel and administering the sacraments” (Augsburg Confession, Article V), has been instituted by God. Individuals are ordained to the ministry of word and sacrament because they have been called by God.

This church believes that the call comes to individuals from God both personally and through the church. People experience the call to ordained ministry through a variety of ways.

Fundamental to each is the personal experience of God’s justifying act in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is the awareness of the gospel in one’s life and the response to that gospel, that lead some to seek to serve in the public ministry of the church. This call may include the example and encouragement of others, the personal assessment of an individual’s own interests and abilities and response to the needs of the world. In whatever way the call to seek ordination may come to an individual, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America believes that such a sense of call must be tested over a period of time, shaped by theological study and finally confirmed in the church’s call to serve as a pastor. It is the Holy Spirit who enables the church to discern a person’s gifts and abilities for ordained ministry.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America prepares and approves candidates for the ordained ministry by setting standards, by providing for theological education through the seminaries of this church and by evaluating a person’s qualifications for service by a Candidacy Committee.

Upon approval for ordination, a person is eligible to receive a letter of call to serve in the ordained ministry of this church.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America therefore understands the call to the ordained ministry of word and sacrament to mean that:

  • Ordained ministers, called by God through the church, are accountable to the word of God for the sake of the gospel of Jesus Christ;
  • Ordained ministers are called by God through the church and are not self-chosen or self-appointed;
  • Ordained ministers are called by God through the church for a ministry of servanthood, and not for the exercise of domination or coercive power; and
  • Ordained ministry is a privilege granted by God through the call of the church and is not a right of the individual.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America expects each of its ordained ministers to understand and accept the call to serve the church’s ministry of word and sacrament as a call from God, and to believe that the Spirit sustains and upholds those who are ordained so they may fulfill their calling to the ordained ministry.

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