After 10 years in the Diocese of Broken Day, Ann Maree Whenman is moving on from the role of Director of the Parish Support Unit. Ann Maree has been a great supporter of the Parish Internship since it started. At a farewell gathering with the staff of the Diocesan Curia, Ann Maree shared her thoughts on ministry and work. Below is an extract of her speech. Ann Maree has served in a variety of ministry positions; many interns who are beginning in ministry might find these insights helpful.
Facets of Ministerial Spirituality:
Ministry not a job, ministry comes from the Spirit of God and from the individual’s personality.
Discernment: Ministry begins with openness to the “other”, the minister seeks ways of learning to be a prophet and an apostle. The abilities to listen and to serve require time apart, times of reflection and prayer. These nourish the analysis of grace in people and establish the point of departure for ministry.
Generosity: Ministry must presume a spontaneous and cheerful generosity. Service, difficult assistance, extra hours, disinterest in honour and possessions are the atmosphere of the minister.
Zeal: The minister needs to be something of a self starter, developing a spiritual life that acknowledges to importance of grace for living the Christian ideal, that recognises energy and instruction, but also accepts the limits of personality. There must be an energy and enthusiasm for the ministry, a willing and happy interest in being with other people and speaking to them of God’s work in Christ and his Spirit. Zeal needs to be filled with emotional exuberance.
Choose your attitude: There is always a choice about the way you approach your work, even if there is not a choice about the activities you undertake in your work.
Play: Have fun in the working day – let things flow
Make their day: Engage people and invite them to join in – focussing ones attention on ways to make another person’s day provides a constant flow of positive feelings.
Be present: The person you are with or the meeting you are currently in engages your undivided attention and energy.
As Ann Maree finishes her time as Director of the Parish Support Unit, we would like to thank her for all the support of the Parish Internship Program. We wish her well in her new position at the