I just added the following to my calendar:

February 18, 2010 Ordination Service for Missionary Mark Tolson at Vision Baptist Church

We thank God for Mark and Natasha Tolson. They will be serving as missionaries in China. I hope you will mark your calendar to be with us for this very special service.

What is ordination?

Ordination is an act of worship by which the congregation, representative of the people of God, acclaims the one being ordained as chosen and empowered by the Holy Spirit to exercise gifts for ministry within the church.

Ordination is not to a holier ministry than those given to other baptized believers.

The laying on of hands with prayer invokes God’s blessing upon the one ordained and signifies that he or she is set apart as a servant to the servants of God.

Ordination is a gift to the church as well as recognition by the church of the minister’s inward call.

In the ordination service, the church receives the ministry of Christ in its midst through the grace of the Holy Spirit in the calling of the ordinand.

Ordination for Baptists is a service of thanksgiving for God’s love revealed in the minister’s calling, a service of petition for God’s continued blessing upon the one called, and a service of submission to God’s authority revealed in the gifted one set aside for ministry.