What was it that first called you to train as a OneSpirit interfaith minister? Ministry has always been a calling, but when I was in the Christian church I struggled not only with my own, but with all mono-religious views. They made less and less sense, and their common elements felt so in tune with each other. Interfaith expressions felt more sane, more real, less divisive and more truthful, somehow. I loved not only my interfaith training, but also my time after ordination when I took Mystery & Mastery, which deepened my experience of this further.
In which year were you ordained? 2013
What is your minister’s vow, and your relationship to it?
I, Frances, vow to seek The Christ in myself, others, and the events of my daily life; to love boldly, to be with suffering, and to live my life with joy. This vow helps me to spiritually organize myself, and not get distracted perhaps the way I would do without it. It’s core to everything.
What was the most important thing that changed in your life as a result of the training?
The growing experience of affinity with people at a non-dual level. It comes at any time – I too am the shop attendant, the parking warden; I too am the terrorist, the lover about to get married, the widower at his wife’s funeral. I am the grandchild I have, I am my daughter, I am my son. I am your children too, I am you. There’s also a feeling that all this is the same for you as well. And then we move into other beings – leaves, water, animals, fish, fruit, mountains, rivers, birth, traffic, dying … the experience is just the same here. We are all expressions of the One. Then I forget this. And then I realize it afresh each time. It’s strange and beautiful.
How does your ministry or your life’s purpose manifest in the world now?
As a mentor (now in my second year), and when time allows as a celebrant.
What main sources of inspiration or guidance do you draw on for your continuing spiritual journey?
Mainly, the actions and lives of other human beings. My study group mentees are really quite extraordinary in this regard. As well as people, the reading of sacred texts, the daily meditations of Richard Rohr and writings of David Whyte, much music, and gardening – everything, really!
Where is your ‘edge’ currently — what most challenges you on your path?
Finding work as a celebrant. I am shy of marketing, yet I know this would help.
How do you envision your ministry developing in future?
After finishing work as a mentor, to dive into celebrant work more fully and take more initiative there. But I also want to actively keep my ties with the Seminary, which I think is extraordinary.