Sunday, January 31, 2021 was my last Sunday as Senior Pastor at St. John Lutheran Church in Cypress, Texas. Saturday, February 13, 2021 the church hosted a retirement celebration event. It was a great and delightful blessing. Thank you St. John!
Diane and I have been blessed to have served in Utah and Colorado (4 years), Arkansas (10 years), and Texas (Arlington, 11 years, and St. John, Cypress 16 years) over the past four decades. We have been deeply enriched by the people God has sent our way through those times. We’ve made our share of mistakes, and have needed the grace, love, and forgiveness of those we have served. We has also sought to give that same grace, love, and forgiveness we have received from God.
We received very generous financial gifts from members of the congregation as well as kind and gracious well wishes and lasting tokens of love in the form of artwork, and other gifts. We are truly thankful for all these things. Most of all we are thankful to God for bringing us to St. John, for providing opportunities to serve and lead here, and for the many experiences of love and grace we have had.
To all who sent cards and letters, thank you. To all who provided gifts of various kinds, thank you. To all who helped make yesterday possible, thank you. To God who considered us faithful and allowed us to serve, thank you.
At the end of the celebration I was offered the opportunity to speak. Diane spoke first, and shared her heart of thankfulness and love for the people of God at St. John. I quoted from Romans 12:9-12. This is my prayer for the people of God at St. John.
Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. 10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.