I am now an officially licensed minister of the UPCI. I don’t have the license in hand yet (it takes several months to be sent from St. Louis), but just call me “Reverend.”

Actually, please don’t call me Reverend. Or Rev. Or Revvy. Or Ringo Starr

I woke up at 5:00 AM Monday morning, after having taken in just 3 1/2 hours of sleep. I left my house at 6:00 and printed off some essay questions at church. I left the church just before 7:00 AM, causing me to arrive at the district office in Tioga, Louisiana at 9:00 AM.

Then the seminars began. Keep in mind, they were very good, but there were seven of them. In a row.


Then we took a diagnostic test and was given a break from 4:15 to 6:00, when the District Board would begin accepting the applicants face-to-face, one at a time. I wasn’t hungry, so I returned at 5:00 and sat to wait my turn. I waited until 10:45 PM, but don’t think that I just sat in my chair silently. We talked, laughed, and for some reason I became delirious at about 6:30, and that lasted until I was called in.

As soon as I was called in, the joking stopped. I became straight-faced, started sweating (like usual), and the cough that I hadn’t been bothered by for most of the day suddenly returned. It wasn’t that bad. I won’t go into details, because 99.9999% of the people that stop by this blog (how does that percentage work when only about 6 people visit) wouldn’t get some of the references to the people involved and the jokes wouldn’t be funny. So I won’t bore you with that…

Just after 11:00 PM, I started on my way home. I thought I’d be exhausted, but for some reason I had just enough energy to make it home and collapse in bed with my wife and dog at 1:15 AM, Tuesday morning.

I spent 20 hours traveling, listening, sitting, and sweating. Strangely enough, it was all worth it. It’s taken me four years to make the decision to finally get licensed, but now that I’ve been through the experience, I’m not sure why I didn’t do it earlier. I love the UPC. My parents and both sets of grandparents are UPC ministers. I attend UPC meetings several times a year. Many of my closest friends are UPC as well.

So like a friend of mine, Derek Parker, asked: why enjoy all the benefits of the UPCI and not support it? Some of my other friends can build up an argument against it, most likely, but after praying and thinking about it (not to mention talking to my mentors), I feel like I’ve made the right decision.

In my opinion, the two greatest things that the UPCI does are unite men and women who share a common doctrine and passion, and provide a means by which missionaries all around the globe are financed, supported, and empowered. The UPC has been good to me, and it’s nice to be a part of it.


8 thoughts on “Licensed

  1. Heather says:

    Congratulations Reverand Ryan Austin Dean!

  2. ryanaustindean says:

    *throws up in his mouth a little*

  3. thanh3 says:

    Congratulations. Welcome to the great fellowship of like minded ministers! Reverend Dean. Just has that certain ring to it!

    Reverend Nathaniel James Hurst

  4. ryanaustindean says:

    Come to think of it, I believe I would prefer “Cardinal Dean.” I have no desire to join the Holy Roman Catholic Church and work my way up to the actual office, I but I believe the UPCI should allow such cool titles. Wanna be an Friar?

  5. Than says:

    I’m just not sure that I want to be called father by everybody!! And friar, well, it kinda sounds like the guy at McDonalds that cooks all the fries and McNuggets. So I think that I would like to be called His Eminence or His Excellency!!

  6. Congratulations…

    Is it too early to start calling you bishop?

  7. ryanaustindean says:

    Slightly, Jessy…slightly…

    …by more than a million years.

  8. Mike says:

    Not to burst everyones’ bubble or anything but take the license in stride. Granted, there is something to be said about being licensed but we are called, first and foremost as servants. We are to serve, not to bask in the glory of a license. By the way, congratulations from another licensed minister. :0)

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