I don't need to remind you that there is war on for the very soul of the Church. Your courage, if I may say this humbly, and your selflessness in the face of a very new and speciously and sophisticated manifestation of evil has won you more admirers all over the world. And now I want to suggest to you now it's time to go for it, to put out your sails for the wind of the Spirit is blowing ...
-Bishop Sandy Millar, Missionary Bishop in London at the installation of Tory Baucum as Rector of Truro, September 28, 2007
From the Call to Worship by the Spanish Ministry Music Team to the closing lines of the Hymn in Procession, "Ye Servants of God, Your Master Proclaim," it was an extraordinary service. The Church was packed as though it was Easter Sunday (we knew something was up when Richard Crocker, Associate Rector of Truro, came out front before the start of the service and did the "pew stuffing speech" to get everyone to embrace "close fellowship." From the Nave to the Transepts to the Balcony, every seat was taken for this day of Celebration of a New Ministry as Tory Baucum officially became the rector of Truro.
The opening hymn was my favorite:
Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heav'n, to earth come down,
Fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.
Jesus, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit it us with thy salvation,
enter every trembling heart.
Celebrating Charles Wesley's 300th birthday, many of the hymns this morning were penned by that amazing Anglican hymnwriter and brother of John Wesley. While the attention was certainly on Tory and his family, the center of it all, of the worship and the preaching was firmly fixed on Jesus. Bishop Sandy Millar's sermon was devoted to Jesus as the one we love and through whom we love others.
I did videoblog the service - I sat in the front transept pew and trained my webcam toward the front. I did capture all of Sandy Millar's sermon as well as other highlights of the service. They will be posted shortly, both here and on YouTube. Stay tuned!
Here is the Institution:
Here is the Gospel Reading.
Sandy Millar sermon is the post above this one.
Here is Tory Baucum's official induction as Rector of Truro:
Here is the Eucharist, Truro style:
The celebration was followed by an old fashioned bar-b-que and what are called "Bouncy Castles" in England for the kids (we call them Moon Bounces). It was a beautiful clear Virginia autumn day, and the leaves are just starting to turn. We even had visits from those running for office, lots of balloons and an abundance of English and African and Virginian accents. We had visitors from the Roman Catholic and Methodist Churches and the Dean of an Episcopal Seminary. Over plates of bar-b-que and potato salad and bakes beans we reflected that indeed, the time has come to go for it, to put out our sails for the wind of the Spirit is blowing, as Sandy said. May it be so!
Note: I will tell you that when you watch the "Institution" video, you may hear a little baby cry. But it wasn't just any baby, it was good friends Lief and Meghan's baby (Meghan was a fellow traveler at General Convention in Minneapolis 2003) - so we didn't mind at all. Not one bit!
Thanks for sharing this day - to God be the glory.