If you are an official member of a TST congregation, you can approach your congregation head (or another member of leadership within your group) and start a discussion about your pathway to becoming an ordained minister. Before you do that, however, there are a few things you should know:
- If you are relatively new to Satanism, or a relatively new member, then you are not ready. As it says on the Program Eligibility page (which you should read): Becoming ordained as a Minister of Satan is an advanced step that should not be entered into lightly. Becoming ordained is not a way to “get started” in Satanism; rather, it is a way for our active members to take the next step in their journey as part of our community.
- When you express your interest in becoming ordained, you congregation head may want to have a discussion with you about your interest and your goals. If they do not know you very well already, they may ask you questions about your background in Satanism and your activities in The Satanic Temple. This is all normal, and should not surprise you.
- Your congregation head may tell you that they think you are not ready yet, but will give you a goal to strive for or a milestone to achieve. For example, if you have been a regular member in meetings but not very active, they may ask you to play a more active role in planning or helping with a congregation activity. Participation in congregation activities gives a congregation head an opportunity to interact with you and see how well you work with others.
- You congregation head may simply tell you that they are not currently recommending ordination candidates, or that they specifically will not recommend you. Don’t be discouraged! This can be a learning experience for you. Talk to them, and try to understand why they think the ordination program is not a good fit for you. The simple fact is, our congregations are filled with people who are brilliant, compassionate, amazing members who simply are not of the right temperament, motivation, or place in their life to be good candidates for ministry. That doesn’t make them any less valuable as members of TST or of our religious community.
If your congregation head recommends a course of action as your path toward eligibility for ordination, follow through and keep up communication with your congregation head over time. Be considerate, and remember that nobody owes you an opportunity to register as an ordination candidate. Be patient and communicate, making sure you check in to understand what goals you should work toward in your pathway toward ordination.
Finally, if may be that you have–for whatever reason–irreconcilable differences with your congregation head, so that you are best served by seeking out a different pathway to becoming an ordination candidate. If that is the case, you may want to investigate other ways of getting involved in our religious community, such as volunteering for a Campaign.