Answering a Call to Ministry

by Rev. Sabine Schmid

March 2008

Rev. Sabine Schmid

“To dream the impossible dream” – this is a great song and my inspiration for many, many years.

My dream happened almost 3 decades ago. I was still living in Germany when my mother became very sick. I felt compelled to comfort her during her dying days. And that’s when I heard my call to ministry. At that point in time, it seemed like an impossible dream. But, for the heart, nothing is impossible, and how can a
dream come true if you don’t have one?

My journey was not easy; I often found myself in rough waters. Luckily I can swim, and I survived. One of my mentors, Frank Ostaseski, stresses: “Welcome everything and push nothing away. Bring your whole self to the experience.” And believe me, there was no way around that. At times I had to fake it till I made it. Standing here, I am in awe and filled with peace. I have a deep sense of freedom—my dream is no dream any more—it is reality.

Today I am standing here in front of you all, as a woman, conscious of my responsibility towards humankind. Today I am officially answering my call to ministry. This is still a privilege which, to this day, is not extended to all women depending on their faith tradition. It is hard to believe, isn’t it?

I am a woman who is passionate about her life’s calling. Today I am saying “Yes” to the purpose of my life. Today my gifts, which over the years have been developed and refined, are recognized and acknowledged by my community, my family, and my friends. Most of all, it is I who recognizes and acknowledges my own gifts.

Today through my ordination I am being given the voice of authority. Authority is usually accompanied by great responsibility. I see my responsibility as speaking the truth. I want my voice to be heard, not silenced. I am stepping up to the plate of recognition, equality and non-judgment with confidence.

I am holding Love and Joy at the center of my being. One of my hopes is that by sharing my story with others I may encourage people, especially women, to go for their hopes and dreams, as impossible as they may seem. Today I am claiming my voice as a female spiritual leader.

Today I am officially saying “Yes” to God in front of you all. I have been waiting for this moment a long, long time – no more waiting for me.

I am grateful for everyone who has traveled alongside me on my path. You are the wind beneath my wings.

Today for the last time as “civilian” I proclaim—Shalom and L’Chaim—to Peace and Life!