On Friday we had been summoned to a last chat with our Bish. He has been great, very supportive and interested, and we’ve had more visits from him to some of our church events than we had in the previous parish in 10 years! So yes, if there’s anybody out there wondering whether to apply for a job in this diocese – it’s very much recommended.
We’ve had some difficult, complex and heavy decisions to make but we’ve always found our diocesan officers really helpful and constructive. This is not by any means a frequent situation – many are the clergy and congregations who feel they are in a running battle with senior personnel – and we’re so grateful that our last job has been undergirded consistently with an Archdeacon who has always seen our point of view and has guided us expertly through the hoops.
He even turned up today, bless him, coming on from another church, to be there for our final service.
And wow, what a service it has been! I’d put together a simple, informal service with lots of singing of our favourite hymns and songs – our church does like to sing.
I couldn’t BELIEVE the number of people who turned up! 8| Hub has worked tirelessly over the past 5 years networking locally with community and other faith leaders, and invited all and sundry, never dreaming that so many would come 😀 We even had some police there to represent the forces to which he’s been a voluntary chaplain.
We had to get loads of extra chairs – the place was full to the doors and there was a lovely atmosphere. The singing was great, lots of people were involved, and Hub preached one of his best talks ever (Sis reckons he’s an outstanding speaker and she’s heard a few. Not prejudiced of course 😉 )
Then Community Minister had organised a barbeque lunch, and there was lots of chatting, and some tears too, and we came away just as the next congregation started to come in for their service.
We tottered back home for a quiet cup of tea with my sister, who had left home at 7am to be with us, and eldest daughter and granddaughter.
I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO happy for Hub. What a lovely, lovely send-off – so well-deserved, and not at all expected.
How is he celebrating???
By washing all his clerical collars :crazy:
( image from http://www.zazzle.co.uk/im_retired_shirt-235581247527628205 )