Bishop Ward speaks about clergy Moving Day in this Connections video.
Today, we pray across our Annual Conference for clergy who are moving and for congregations who are welcoming new pastors. In the United Methodist Church, itinerancy or the moving of pastors, has been a bedrock of our way of living toward Christ.
We know, as Father Wesley said many many years ago, that no pastor contains every gift necessary for the up-building of the congregation. Therefore, those of us who are clergy know that we come for a season, and we plant, and we tend, and as we move to another place of ministry, we bless the person who comes and takes up the mantle from us.
We know that we are not the beginning or the ending, that we are somewhere in the middle of the faith journey of every congregation and so as we transition today, moving day across the North Carolina Annual Conference, we give thanks that God is the Author of this great story from beginning to end and that God calls us to be at work in the field for a season.
We give thanks for Pastor-Parish Committees and for laity who today, will welcome a new pastor. The gift of hospitality and welcome is the gift of Christ to us and whenever we extend it to one another, we are passing on the grace and riches of our Lord.
Thank you for all that you are doing to help your new pastor get a wonderful fresh start in your midst. Together, laity and clergy in every place across eastern North Carolina, can be delighted in the work that God is doing in our midst. Be strong this day and know that every beginning and every ending is God’s.