Bishop Ward invites us to pray for our pastors and to find ways this month to offer special expressions of appreciation for our pastor.
Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus Christ.
As I ride to commitments across eastern North Carolina, I notice signs in October, signs in front of churches. They say over and over again that October is pastor appreciation month. We give thanks for all of those who are called into pastoral ministry. It’s been my joy to gather with the pastors of the eight districts, one by one, beginning with the Beacon district back in September and ending with the Fairway district just last week.
As we have gathered, I have been encouraged to see our clergy, to share space with them, to talk together about our shared ministry. We gather in this way so that we will know we are not alone and so that we will encourage one another to lean into both the light and messiness of this time, this time of challenge and this time of great privilege. In these days, we serve as God’s shepherds, seeking help from one another in the light of the Holy Spirit.
It was also my pleasure just last week to be with a group of retired pastors and spouses at the annual Retirees Retreat at Fort Caswell. There on the coast of North Carolina, we enjoyed the company of one another. We remembered wonderful moments in our ministry. We thought together about how God’s abundance might flow through us in even more generous and compelling ways.
I invite you to pray today for your pastor. I invite you to find ways in this month of October to offer special expressions of appreciation for your pastor’s good work. In this way, we will all honor Christ, love one another well and move into the future with faithfulness and joy.