Dear PCW members,
Philippians 1:3-7 says, “I thank my God every time I remember you, constantly praying with joy in every one of my prayers for all of you, because of your sharing in the gospel from the first day until now. I am confident that the one who began a good work among you will bring it to completion by the day of Jesus Christ. It is right for me to think that this way about all of you, because you hold me in your heart, for all of you share in God’s grace with me….”
When I think of the PCW congregation, Paul’s words have become mine. As I write this letter, my contract as the Temporary Associate Pastor is coming to an end in June. I am sad to leave all of you but I am so grateful for your partnership in Christ’s ministry.
From the first day I started my PCW ministry 5 years ago, after the Head of Staff and Associate announced their leaving, I got to know many of you in a short time. My role quickly changed to be the only ordained pastor for 4 months and there were many pastoral responsibilities that needed tending to. You welcomed me and helped me get to know who the congregation was and how we could partner together in ministry.
You allowed me into your lives at very joyous times such as weddings and baptisms. As well, I was there in difficult and sad times through pastoral care, phone calls, and many funerals. Christ used my gifts and very presence to remind all of you that even in the midst of this change, He was present. It was an honor to be your pastor and care for you in those uncertain times.
I was able to build relationships with members of the Senior Network and Board of Deacons as well as session, Outreach and Welcome, Fellowship/ Hospitality Ministry and Worship leadership each week.
I witnessed many of you step up and use your God-given gifts to help with pastoral care, provide opportunities for ministry and fellowship and learn and grow together in faith. Whether it was in leading the Women’s Retreat or a Mini Retreat for spiritual disciplines, or guiding small groups on How to Deal with Change, or Preparing for our Funerals or providing creative worship opportunities we were learning what it meant to be a Christian in today’s world.
There is so much I have to be grateful for as you continued ministry in PCW’s changing times, but you also supported me and cared for me as your pastor. You have affirmed my gifts and my care for you, and for that I am truly thankful.
My last Sunday with you will be Sunday, June 21, as I preach in all 3 worship services. In the next few months I pray that we will continue to do ministry as PCW looks to the future and have a time to say goodbye.
As Paul said, as we began ministry together, my prayer is that you will continue to be faithful to your calls and serve PCW with the energy and love you have in the past.
Yours in Christ,