Welcome & Call to Worship at the Ordination of Rev. Diana Hultgren

by BC

Good evening and welcome! I am Rev. Brian Chenowith, the minister here at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lexington. It is my distinct honor and privilege to welcome all of you as the settled minister of this congregation to this occasion.

To my colleagues, welcome. To this congregation, welcome. To visitors, friends, and family, welcome. To the spirit of all that holds us, welcome. This is a momentous day. It is momentous for so many reasons — they cannot all be enumerated.

But chief amongst these reasons are the gathering of this community to engage in holy work, and also the mystery and wonder of affirming one persons call to the limitless and the uttermost — and ordaining her to the sacred office of Minister.

Today, in this moment, in this good and right space, we ordain and affirm our community minister, Diana Hultgren, to the Unitarian Universalist Ministry.

It is only fitting that I seal my words with words that capture the heart of this Ministry, from the late great Rev. Jack Mendelsohn, he tells us:

A Unitarian Universalist minister is a person never completely satisfied or satisfiable, never completely adjusted or adjustable – a person who walks in two worlds: one of things as they are, the other of things as they ought to be – and loves them both.

Ministers are persons with pincushion souls and elastic hearts, who sit with the happy and the sad in a chaotic pattern of laugh, cry, laugh, cry – and know deep down that the first time their laughter is false or their tears are make-believe, their days as real ministers are over.

Ministers are people with dreams they can never wholly share, partly because they have some doubts about them, and partly because they are unable to explain adequately what it is they think they see and understand.

A minister is a person who continually runs out of time, out of wisdom, out of courage, and out of money; a person whose tasks involve great responsibility and little power, who must learn to accept people where they are and go from there; a person who must never try to exercise influence that has not been earned.

The minister who is worthy knows all this and is still thankful every day of life for the privilege of being – a minister.

Again, welcome, you are participants in a holy and ineffable work this day.

Call to Worship

Come in, breathe deeply,
gather your joys and your sorrows,
gather your hopes and you wonder,
gather all that makes you vibrant in your humanity,
gather it up and bring it to this place,
for today in this moment,
we are gathered at the altar of the ineffable,
the holy, the wondrous.

Come as we share in celebration,
for today is not just a great honor
it is the pouring out of the spirit,
the lifeblood of this living and good faith.

Come, dear friends, let your hearts sing,
let your minds burst with possibility,
let your souls be present and say
Amen, Alleluia, we have arrived.

Whoever you are, wherever you are on your life journey, you are welcome here.
Come, let us gather, let us rejoice, let us worship, let us ordain.
You are exactly where you need to be for the coming moments.