The Ordination Journey

The Ordination Journey

The Blaine Memorial UMC congregation raise hands and pray over Pastor Mia as she embarks on a week of interviews with the Oregon-Idaho Conference’s Board of Ordained Ministries – as they will determine if she will move forward with the ordination process.

Associate Pastor’s Spiritual Reflection

Reflecting on Ordination: a long and prayerful journey

By Pastor Mia MiKyung Park, Associate Pastor

Editor’s note: Pastor Mia MiKyung Park has passed the initial stages of the ordination process. Let’s continue praying as Pastor Mia enters the next phases on her ordination journey!

Pastor Mia Park, Associate Pastor of Blaine Memorial UMC, presents the introduction to offering during Sunday Worship.

I mentioned unexpected pause as a holy interruption in my article in the last issue of the newsletter. We experience a continuation of pause. As I write this article, I am preparing to go to my interview with the Oregon-Idaho United Methodist Conference’s Board of Ordained Ministries in Eagle Creek, Oregon. This interview is one of the most important interviews in my life, not only to move forward with my ordination status, but to reaffirm my commitment to this spiritual journey. These three days of the interviews will be a significant pause in my ministerial journey and I ask your prayer support. 

I’m reflecting deeply on one of questions that will be asked during this process: “For the sake of the mission of Jesus Christ in the world and the most effective witness to the Christian gospel and in consideration of your influence as an ordained minister, are you willing to make a complete dedication of yourself to the highest ideals of the Christian life; and to this end will you agree to exercise responsible self-control by personal habits conducive to physical health, intentional intellectual development, fidelity in marriage and celibacy in singleness, integrity in all personal relationships, social responsibility, and growth in grace and the knowledge and love of God?” 

This is a serious and deep question – one that feels heavier the more I read it. For a while, I couldn’t write my answer – but after a great intentional pause, I prepared my response: “There is a saying in Korea: becoming an ordained minister is like burning the bridge after crossing the bridge. I believe that the life of an ordained minister requires complete dedication and commitment to the highest ideals of the Christian life. Dedication and commitment indicate complete acceptance of the call to serve and love God and people. Being an ordained minister is a lifelong journey which is a continued process of developing and growing into the fullness of Christ. It is an honor and a privilege to commit a life to God and for people. Therefore, I will continue to exercise my responsibility for self-control through personal habits conducive to physical health, intentional intellectual development, fidelity in marriage, integrity in all personal relationships, social responsibility, and growth in grace and the knowledge and love of God.”

When I declared my candidacy in 2016, I never imagined myself applying for ordination. I’d never met a female ordained clergy in person until I moved to Seoul at 18, so I had not envisioned it before. This journey has been a long and complicated one – one, that I have could not have walked alone. I’ve learned it takes more than a village to be a pastor. This sacred time has been significant with God’s presence and intervention. I will treasure each moment as I prepare for these interviews. Thank you to the Blaine Memorial community – who have been graciously ministering, supporting, and encouraging me all the way!

The February memorization verse for Church School is Joshua 1:9, “I hereby command you: Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Every Wednesday evening, our Church School teachers gather to plan upcoming activities and pray together. I am so inspired by their dedication and love for our children and I pray that we invite many others to our Church to be nurtured and guided in Christian education. 

I am grateful for walking on this faith journey with you all, especially during the 40 days of Lent as we reflect on the journey that Jesus took. During this time, I pray that our thoughts are attuned with God’s will and that our actions become God’s compassion. May God continue to guide and bless our church and transform each of us into the fullness of Christ. 

Pastor Mia MiKyung Park serves as the Associate Pastor of Blaine Memorial UMC.

The latest issue of the Beacon newsletter is ready for viewing. Click the image above.