WOW! It is hard to believe that this is my last monthly letter to share with you as your pastor! At the end of October I will be retiring and handing over the ministries of the church to all you wonderful people of Albion Nazarene. I have great confidence in our God and in each of you, that with Him as the head of the body, you will work together and the Albion church will thrive in the days ahead. You are in good hands with our District Superintendent, Rev. Dan Eddings overseeing the congregation and the selection of your next pastor. The Church Board will be chaired by Randy Hites, Church Board Secretary. Randy will do a great job in this role!
I have been with you for the past 29 years and the last 28 of those as your senior pastor. It has been a tremendous 29 years and it is with very mixed feelings that I retire and finish working with you. Carol and I love you and appreciate you more than words can say. You are a healthy, vibrant congregation and you are going to have a great future. It is God’s church. He has been in charge of this church and He will continue to be in charge of this church.
Many of you have asked if Carol and I are moving out of the area. We are not moving in the near future. We own our home here and have no immediate plans to relocate. We cannot speak for what may happen in the future years, but for now you will still see us around town, at the Albion Fair, etc.
You may also be wondering if we will still attend the Albion Church or where we will attend. In order to help the church to move forward and to allow your future new pastor to settle in and be accepted as your pastor, we will not be attending Albion Nazarene. We have not decided which church we will be attending and are seeking God’s direction. Speaking of allowing your new pastor to truly become the pastor of Albion Nazarene, I will avoid entering into conversations that should be directed to them. In other words, if you have something you are having a problem with something in the church, you need to go to them. I will be supporting them in any way that I can. Also, if I am asked to do a funeral or be involved in a wedding for someone in the church, I will plan to ask them to be involved in it with me and for them to do the premarital counseling. I feel that it is only fair to them for me to support them in any way that I can and not interfere in their ministry.
One of the best tributes to me as your former pastor will be for you to stay in the Albion Nazarene Church and continue to build the kingdom through this church. Don’t forget, you worship and serve God (and NOT me) and He will still be here. Nothing will make me happier than to watch the Albion Church thrive and grow!
Others have asked what I am going to do in retirement. Much of that remains to be seen, but I will preach for churches that are in between pastors or whose pastor is on vacation. Carol and I plan to spend time with family and travel, as our “fixed income” allows. I have many projects at home that, for years, I have been saying I would get to when I retire. I may teach some classes for the Pittsburgh District for ministers going through the education process. I will not be continuing to do counseling at Psychological Services, but am retiring from there in October, as well.
I hope to see many of you on my last Sunday with you on October 27th. I will be preaching each Sunday in October, but that will certainly be a very special Sunday! We have much to celebrate together!
Carol and I will be in prayer for you in these days of transition, selecting your new pastor, and then in their days serving with you! We are also in prayer for your new pastor and their family (if applicable). We know that God is preparing them, even now, for their transition to Albion Nazarene.
Thank you for loving us! We love you and it has been our privilege to serve God together with you!
In Christ’s Love,
Pastor Wayne and Carol