question about ordintion certificate

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by GODzThunder, Aug 4, 2009.

  1. GODzThunder

    GODzThunder
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    I have my ordination hanging on the wall of my living room. While looking at the tonight I stated to wonder.

    If the paper got stolen or destroyed (ex lost in a fire) then what does that mean in terms of my being ordained?

    This paper is the proof of my ordination. Since the baptist church is not a conglomorate like the catholic or methodist church (that is a single entity where all ministers/priest ordinations are on file like job resumes) if my certificate "got gone" How could I prove I am ordained if it came into question (like the probate court wanting to know if I am truly qualified to perform weddings).

    the church I was ordained at is just a small country church and probably did not have that recorded in their minutes and I have no knowledge of the whereabouts of the members of my ordination council (some are deceased).

    what can a person do if their certificate gets gone?
     
  2. preachinjesus

    preachinjesus
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    From what I understand your license is more important than your ordination for legal purposes. Most churches tie them together. You should, I could be wrong, have it registered with the church that granted it to you and it should be on file in the town where you were got ordained.

    But I could be wrong. :)
     
  3. ktn4eg

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    Not being ordained (or even called to preach for that matter!), I'm uncertain of the implications that losing one's ordination certificate might have for that person.

    I suppose you could have copies of it made and have at least one of them stored away in a safe deposit box.

    Also (as preachinjesus suggested) you could contact the church that sponsored your ordination and ask them for their records of your ordination.
     
  4. Salty

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    To add a little more drama - suppose the church that ordained you has since disbanded.

    Sounds like making several copies, and giving them to friends and or official filing.
     
  5. rbell

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    Or, and I'm totally winging it here...

    Person in question goes to current church and explains the situation.

    Church, by voice vote, affirms the testimony of said person, and affirms the validity of the ordination. Then it's in the minutes of a current church, and it would seem a certificate could be issued, if necessary...

    (also, just because a church is defunct doesn't mean their records are)

    I guess, if you wanted to get really "Biblical," and do the 2 or 3 witnesses thing, you could contact people from said church. That sounds like overkill to me.

    Besides...some of ya'll on here might have outlived the rest of your church!

    :tonofbricks:
     
  6. Johnv

    Johnv
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    Nothing. It's no different than if a person's baptismal certificate was destroyed.
     
  7. preachinjesus

    preachinjesus
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    As we all are I believe. :thumbsup:

    Part of the installation process (it usually isn't that formal these days) is to have the church where one is serving affirm and carry over their license. I think this is how most churches do it. That's why you don't have to reapply for a license when you move states.

    lol...the average age of my ordination council was 72 :smilewinkgrin:
     
  8. preachinjesus

    preachinjesus
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    Disbanding churches, fire swept records rooms...sounds like something the government needs to start regulating. That would be a sure fire way of keeping everything simple and convenient. :tongue3:

    I occassionally misplace my original certificate in the stacks of papers and books and files. I "lost" it for 2 years but once I got motivated to find it had no problem. Maybe I should frame this bad boy.
     
  9. Salty

    Salty
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    I was a member of Calvary Baptist Church in Copperas Cove, Texas, when I was in the military.
    The church disbanded. I stopped by the building shortly after the Nazarenes purchased the building, as I wanted to get some records from Awana. Well the pastor told me ever thing from Calvary Baptist has been sent to the city dump!

    Salty

    ps - no that wasn't the church which ordained me.
     
  10. JDale

    JDale
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    Interesting question. Baptists believe in local church autonomy, so as each local church ordains it's own deacons or ministers, they are responsible to maintain records. If a church disbands, often former members retain the records, or they may be forwarded to the Baptist Association they were members of, or a Baptist College or Seminary Library.

    Most Southern Baptist Churches are members of a local association, so it is possible - LIKELY - that they have maintained records of those who were/are ministers in the association.

    Also, if you have left one church to serve at another, Baptists usually have and installation service, and/or ratify your credentials officially. Thus, were you to lose your original certificate, that church would be in order to issue you a new ordination certificate.

    I would make a simple suggestion -- make at least two copies of your original certificate, and place one in a safe in your home or a safe deposit box at your bank. Send the other to your Associational Clerk to keep on file. Might as well "play it safe."

    The biggest concern I have about this issue from a Baptist Polity perspective comes from the opposite direction. What can Baptists do when someone who was ordained for wrong reasons, or who has fallen into immorality, or has adopted false doctrines, simply takes his original "ordination certificate," presents it to another unsuspecting Baptist Church, and is called into a Pastorate? I've seen this happen more than once, and in several different Baptist denominations (SBC's included). I believe this is a weakness among Baptists that they have not and perhaps cannot fully address...
     
  11. Salty

    Salty
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    So as not to hijack, I have stated a new discussion...
     
  12. Alive in Christ

    Alive in Christ
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    This poster beat me to the punch.

    You could make a copy of it to hang on your wall using your PC copier, while the real one is in the SDB.
     

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