The laying on of hands

I was thinking about what I felt was something that needs improvement with in the ISM. My thoughts were coming up empty, as most of the ideas I had were already thought of by others, until just recently.

I was invited to the ordination of a friend who is with another jurisdiction. I had attended his diaconate ordination seven years ago. At his diaconate ordination all visiting clergy were invited up to lay on hands. At his recent priestly ordination, I was told that visiting clergy were welcome to vest and process but would not be allowed to lay on hands unless they were members of the ordaining jurisdiction.

I was told that that was the policy put out by the ordaining bishop who is the Diocesan Bishop for the parish that my friend is a member of. This policy, to me, seems rather exclusive. I have, in the past few years, concelebrated Mass with the priest at this parish (he was ordained 3 weeks after I was. This was also the diaconate ordination of my friend.). One of the times that I concelebrated, this same Bishop was the main celebrant.

I debated whether I would attend or not. As it turned out, I came down with a cold the day of the ordination and did not attend.

My suggestion for a solution to this excluding policy is that some type of joint statement from all ISM member jurisdictions saying that as a family of jurisdictions under the rule of the Christ, all ISM clergy should, in the spirit of collegiality, be allowed to participate in ordinations and consecrations in all ISM member jurisdictions.

We are all members of the “One Holy catholic and apostolic church” and as such we are all brothers and sisters under our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. As such, all clergy are part of the Order of Presbyters and should be recognized as worthy to lay hands on those being ordained regardless of jurisdiction.

About The Rev. Father Andrew Smith

Rev. Fr. Andrew Smith grew up in Appleton. WI. He studied Theology, Philosophy and Sociology at Lakeland University in Sheboygan, WI and completed his theological studies at Holy Redeemer Seminary of the UICC. Fr. Andrew was ordained to the diaconate in December of 2010 and to the Order of Presbyters in May of 2011. He entered his novitiate in the Order of Preachers Old Catholic in August of 2016 and took his three- year vows in May 2017. Fr. Andrew is pastor of St Dominic Old Catholic Church in Oshkosh, WI. He enjoys cooking, reading, writing and is an avid history buff.

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