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A large crowd representing several neighbouring parishes gathered at St. Luke’s church in the Parish of Woodstock for the ordination of Harold Boomer.

Harold was ordained a deacon by Bishop David Edwards on Sept. 23. At the beginning of the service, the bishop dedicated the new pew cushions funded by an anonymous donor.

The bishop’s sermon was based on Matthew 9:9-13, the calling of the tax collector, Matthew.

“What we’re celebrating today is the idea of being called,” he said. “Often what we think is that people are called to wear these clothes — layreaders, deacons, priests — and we tend to think that’s the call. But that’s just the beginning of the call.”

Scripture tells us God made a plan for every one of us before we were even born, he said.

“Then sin came into the world, and we don’t fulfill God’s plan perfectly,” said the bishop.

He told the story of being a high school teacher, feeling the call to ordained ministry, but applying both to the priesthood and to a new job as head of humanities at a high school.

In England, the decision is made and the offer given on the day of the interview, and Bishop David came away from his teaching interview with a new job. But when he got home that day, a letter was waiting for him, inviting him to an interview regarding ordination.

God’s perfect plan for Bishop David had to wait three more years.

“Although we turn our backs on him, God is not surprised that 2018 has come,” he said. “He’s always had this plan and purpose for our lives.”

Many spend a long time ignoring the plan, running away from it and getting it wrong.

The bishop told the story of a friend who worked in an office. He and many others, including the boss, were Christians, so he asked the boss if they could organize some prayer and bible readings.
The boss pointed to his coat rack and told the man, ‘Every morning I hang my coat, and my Christianity, on that hook.’

“If we’re going to be authentic followers of Jesus, we must ask ‘how can I best follow Jesus in the job, the role I am in,’” he said.

“Harold is called, has always been called. This is just another step in his call.”

We have to be willing to live in a way that allows us to discover that call, he said.

Harold received gifts from the ACW, the Parish of Woodstock and the Parish of Wicklow, Wilmot, Peel and Aberdeen, where he has been training under supervisor the Rev. Bob LeBlanc.

Bob, as well as the Rev. Canon Fran Bedell, were in attendance. Fran is the regional dean in the Archdeaconry of Woodstock.

After the service, everyone was invited to a potluck lunch in the hall. Harold will continue his ministry in the Parish of Woodstock with rector Shirley Noseworthy.