A New Johannite Priest: The Rev. Father Brenden Humberdross

The Apostolic Johannite Church is pleased to announce the incardination and licensing of the Rev. Fr. Brenden Humberdross for service in the Johannite Church of Australia under the Most Rev. Tim Mansfield, Ph.D, in ecclesia Mar Timotheos.

Originally ordained to the Diaconate and Priesthood in Unified Old Catholic Church, Fr. Brenden excardinated from that community for seminary work with the AJC. After a process of evaluation, coursework and on the ground service over the past two and a half years, he has been licensed for ministry in the Apostolic Johannite Church.

Brenden Humberdross is a native of Queensland, Australia experiencing its vastness as his family moved for his father’s work. His parents always encouraged an open approach to religion as a personal matter.

As Brenden grew he gained a natural inquisitiveness about religion and at the age of 10 began actively developing his own faith. His curiosity has taken him through many different phases of personal development and has led to a deep personal faith, a life long love, and an academic interest in religion and spirituality.

This passion led to Brenden to study and receive a Post Graduate Diploma in theology from Charles Strut University and to being ordained a Deacon and a Priest in the Independent Sacramental Movement. His continued work on his own spirituality and experience with the Divine brought him to the AJC. In his time with the AJC (while studying for licensing as a Priest) he has assisted Mar Timotheos in administering St Theresa Mission (Brisbane) and founding Throne of Wisdom Narthex in Maryborough.

Brenden has an interest in the Western Mystery tradition having taken degrees in a number of Masonic bodies, is a member of the Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia, and a Neophyte in the tradition of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.

In his secular life Brenden has studied education at both an undergraduate and post-graduate level and has 18 years of teaching experience across a variety of schools and subjects. Brenden and his wife Monique live in Maryborough where they raise their blended family of  6 children.

Brenden looks forward to serving the communities of southern Queensland as the first Rector of St Theresa Parish (Brisbane); with missions in both Maryborough and Toowoomba.

The Rev. Fr. Brenden Humberdross will be formally welcomed at a celebration of the Eucharist led by the Most Rev. Mar Timotheos, who will be receiving his vows. 

Holy St. Nicholas

The Johannite and Gnostic Liturgical calendar is replete with heterodox and heretical figures, whose wisdom, trials, examples, or straight-up fantastic legends, serve as potent landmarks for understanding and reconciling our own experience of the Gnosis – that transcendent, liberating, and experiential knowledge of spiritual truth, as the Church’s Statement of Principles proclaims. There is a human want, even need, to experience, tell and hear of extraordinary figures and tales, mired as we are in the slow, thick expanse of the ordinary.  

St Nicholas (March 15, 270 to December 6, 343) in the wider orthodox accounting, is the patron of sailors, merchants, children, brewers, the unmarried, pharmacists and coopers. The stories say he saved the falsely accused from execution, rescued girls from forced sex work and once punched a famous heretic in the face at the Council of Nicea. But that is not why we remember him, or how we think of him when December comes around in the secular calendar.  

St. Nicholas is the precursor, type, and inspiration for the near universal figure of Santa Claus. He stands in contrast to many of his peers in the Liturgical Calendar, as a relatively ordinary figure in extraordinary company. He does the ordinary in a way that becomes extraordinary.  

It is true of us, as it is true of the saints and figures of myth, legend, and history, that the extraordinary only ever happens in the midst of the ordinary. Gnosis only ever happens in the midst of ignorance, the spiritual is experienced in the middle of ordinary, material life. 

The meaningful figures of our own lives are likely to be not those exceptional people for whom great tales are told, great things are accomplished, or great books are written, but rather those constant presences which have given of themselves freely and often, without note, fanfare or spectacle. Those people for whom our journeys would not be or have been possible.   

Is St. Nicholas unremarkable otherwise? Of course not, but the ordinary, human, caring action of giving to another, is what he is known for – and out of that ordinary action, an extraordinary figure is made – one whose name will be spoken of with reverence and wonder long after many of the other names in the calendar are forgotten. Indeed, he has already travelled significant distances of time to reach this page, where so many others have not.  

Everybody knows that communities, families, societies, and circles of friends even, are often made possible by individuals whose quiet offering of service is made to those around them, and in the culmination of life for those who live in such a way, we always say they were so dedicated, so kind, so selfless. If you are like me, you remark how you wish you could do as they have done.  

Yet it does not take a lifetime of service, a life of sacrifice, bottomless pockets, bank accounts or pantries – it just takes one action, for one person, one time – and when you are able to, to do it again. Kindness then attends to itself, and acquires its own momentum, and out of a multitude of actions such as these, it becomes easier to see the face of Christ in another human being, and for his face to be seen in us – and to improve the world around us in some small way while we are doing it.  

What seemingly ordinary actions can you take for your fellow travelers, seekers, and companions on the journey of life?  

Those gestures may be the things that save the day, the journey, or the life of another human being.  

Nicholas was called ‘The Wonderworker’ but in the legend of his person, no miraculous powers were needed but kindness alone.  
 
+ IOHANNES IV
Sovereign Pontiff and Patriarch
The Apostolic Johannite Church

Ordination to the Subdiaconate: Karen Weaver

The Apostolic Johannite Church is pleased to announce the upcoming Ordination of the Rev. Chev. Karen Weaver, KTSJ to the Order of the Subdiaconate.

Sister Karen has served for a decade with the Parish of St. Mary Magdalene in Denver, CO,  both at the altar as an Acolyte, assisting at liturgy and leading contemplative practice, and in the pews, as a pillar of the community, supporting and assisting members in their spiritual journey and is a familiar face in the community and the wider AJC.

In addition to her service in the Denver parish, Karen is also a vowed Chevalier of the Order of the Temple and Saint John and is a seminarian with the AJC’s St. Raphael the Archangel Theological Seminary, in which she is now studying towards the Permanent Diaconate.

The Ordination will take place during a celebration of the Johannite Gnostic Mass by the Primate of the United States, on June 6th, 2021.