Exploring ordination

Have you got a vocation, a call from God?

This particular calling is to serve God and all people through the Church’s ordained ministries. For this particular calling, it isn’t enough simply to be convinced yourself that you have a vocation.

You have to allow your sense of vocation to be tested by the Church through its discernment processes. It is the Church that validates and authorises that calling.

What could you be called to?

The ministry of a deacon is to be a servant and ambassador, both within the Church and in the wider community. A person who is accepted for ordination as a priest is first ordained as a deacon. Then, after normally a year, he or she is ordained to the priesthood. This reminds us that humble service and reaching out to others are at the heart of priestly ministry.

However, some are called to be life-long distinctive deacons. These are people who are called to ordained ministry but not as priests. Their ministry encapsulates the ambassadorial and servant nature of all Christian ministry.

Most ordained ministers are priests. Their work is to build up the Body of Christ in the Church and in the world through the celebration of the sacraments, teaching, preaching and pastoral care. It is a ministry of leadership and mission, enabling all Christian people to realise their potential as they witness to Christ in the world.

But priesthood is not only about what a person is; it is also about their life experience. Through the lives they lead, priests point to the life of Christ crucified and risen, encouraging all God’s people to show love, care and compassion and to strive for justice and peace. As they do this, priests share in people’s sorrows and joys as they walk with them on their individual journeys.

Expressions of ministry
For some, this ministry is exercised full-time, for others it is exercised as they continue in their on-going occupations, as Ordained Local Ministers or Ordained Pioneer Ministers.

Read more about types of ministry offered in the Diocese of Bendigo.

More information

Ordained Ministry in the Diocese of Bendigo
This booklet gives an outline of ordained ministry in the Diocese of Bendigo and the path to ordination


Archdeacon George Hemmings
Ministry Development Officer