By Bill Peel. Reprinted from the LeTourneau Center for Faith and Work.
Are you called to ministry?
Okay, you probably realize that’s a trick question because we’re all called to ministry as Christ’s ambassadors of redemption. However, I spend a good deal of time talking to people who are well-establish in their work, but they want to leave their work and “go into ministry.”
R. G. LeTourneau wrestled with the same issue until his pastor told him that God needs people in business as much as He needs pastors and missionaries. I tell people the same thing, explaining that God wants bankers, teachers, welders, pilots, plumbers, neurosurgeons, and entrepreneurs–a sampling of endless examples—to partner with Him in His work: To build out and carry on creation in ways that foster flourishing. So, if your work meets legitimate human needs, you’re already working for God.
Recently, I met a man who expanded my paradigm of what ministry can look like at work. Greg McBrayer is Chief Flight Dispatcher at American Airlines IOC (Integrated Operations Center). The IOC manages 6700 American Airlines daily flights, keeping watch over the aircraft, flight crews, maintenance, flight paths and everything necessary to safely transport millions of passengers to their destination.
In addition to his vital role at AA, Greg is an ordained Anglican priest. Not every business or global enterprise would allow the head of a key business component to wear a clerical collar to work. But American Airlines does, and like a growing number of major companies, AA welcomes Greg and their other employees to bring their faith to work.
The following article about Greg appeared in the Anglican Church of North America’s online journal.
Don’t miss this story of how one bi-vocational priest took a chance and now runs a Monday Ministry at the world’s largest airline, serving thousands of people each day and transforming the corporate culture. “When you serve 21,000 people, you’ve got 21,000 stories,” Fr. Greg McBrayer explained while sitting in the Command Center of American Airlines, a large conference room filled with screens and discussion microphone units overlooking the chaotic flight operations floor. Though McBrayer has thousands of stories to share, they are all small pieces of what makes up the story the Lord is writing through him. In the middle of the busy operations floor covered by desk cubbies of several stacked monitors is a raised platform called “The Bridge.” This is where Fr. McBrayer, as Chief Flight Controller, sits.