Entering Ireland recently, I was asked whether I was a "minister".
How that takes me back. It must be some fifty years since I was last described as a "minister". The family was on holiday in the South of Scotland, and we desired entry to a Church of Scotland church which contained one of those marvellous Anglian carved crosses. When the aged crone who kept the key had got my profession straight, "Och", she cried, "ye're a meenister".
I once found a similar but much more culturally nuanced crone in County Kerry (Ireland does very good quality crones and the Kerry ones are best of all). I had knocked on a cabin door in the hope of finding a boatman to take me across the straights to an ancient monastic settlement on a tiny island called Illaunloghan. As she retired into the back room I heard her describing me to her husband in awed tones as the Pairson. Although I have never held a benefice, I'm distinctly fond of that nice old term. I would never bridle at it. Infinitely better than the fearful American vocative "Reverend". I came across Parson later in a Breton church when I was looking at a bilingual monument to a former Parish Priest. The French version called him the Cure; the Breton, Parsoun. And you find it in medieval texts in the old Cornish language. (I did get the boat.)
In the novels of Dorothy 'Patrimony' Sayers, full of accurate observation of the usages and social delicacies of the 1930s, I recall an account of an old West Countryman telling an anecdote concluding with the words "And Old Parson [i.e. a previous incumbent], how he did laugh!" 'Parson' also has a whiff about it of Anthony 'Patrimony' Trollope and the rooks cawing over the Close at Barchester ... and of old well-worn much-loved Edwardian jokes ("What do Hell and the Smoking Room of the Athenaeum have in common?" "You can't see the fire for parsons".).
I think we need to restore this decent usage in the Ordinariate. They don't need it any more in the Church of England, because their country churches are mostly now in the hands of ladies of a certain age who prefer to be addressed and referred to as Jill or Jan or Jen. Come to think of it, the most authentic old-style Parson I can think of is the emeritus Bishop of Ebbsfleet (now disguised as a popish priest and pastoring a couple of the learned and admirable Dr Egan's country churches). I'm pretty sure he has never once ridden to hounds without wearing gaiters.