I can’t thank you enough for all the ministry and special moments we have shared over the last twenty-three and a half years. I fell in love with Pilgrim Faith in my first conversation with your pastoral search committee in 1994 and have been in love with you ever since!
I will always remember the joy of retreats, church on the lawn, Vacation Bible School, STARS and various fellowship and games nights. I will treasure the tender moments of baptisms, funerals, weddings, hospital and home visits, office visits and all the other places we shared the joys and struggles of life.
My heart is full from the worship moments when music soared or softly drew us to God, sermons that connected (and those that fell a bit flat), children’s times with unanticipated sparks & turns, lay “faith moments” far better than any sermon I could preach, communion with Christ and prayers that joined us in one heart and spirit.
I relish all the ministries we launched in countless board, committee and council meetings (though I won’t miss writing those monthly reports). I rejoice in our two successful capital campaigns, the miracle of raising money every year for ongoing ministry and mission and our endless efforts to fund raise so we can send kids to camp and families and individuals on retreat and more.
I’m so proud of our tireless efforts for mission: our pantry and homeless shelter, mission trips, Share the Harvest, tag days for ALS, CROP walks, Souper Bowl of Caring, Seminary Sunday and all our contributions for UCC basic and special mission offerings, always being “5 for 5.’
My spirit has been fed along with you in Bible study, Lenten programs, Star Words, prayer groups, confirmation class, children’s communion class, WISH and other women’s and men groups, Hot Topics and newcomer classes. (I never got to do Sunday School but am so thankful for all who did!)
I rejoice in all our outreach to and with the community as so many share in our ministries with the hungry and homeless, in the self-help groups and counseling center, Ashes-to-Go, interfaith work and so many other community programs and connections.
I feel so blessed by all the excellent volunteers and staff who make Pilgrim Faith and its ministries faithful to God. I am grateful for the opportunity to share all that with you.
As we say farewell over the next few weeks know that you will forever be in my heart and prayers. I will pray also for the church and your interim pastor that it might be a rich and blessed partnership for Christ.
My final Sunday will be June 10. I hope you will come for the service and celebration that day. I will be wrapping up final details in the office for a couple days after that and then will take my remaining vacation time to finish packing so we can clear out of the parsonage by the end of June.
Thank you for being such a wonderful part of my life. May God bless you and keep you always.
Pastor Peggy McClanahan