Celebrated my 25th Anniversary of Ordination today. It was just wonderful. It was a beautiful service. We had the best organist. A member of the congregation played the trumpet. The bishop talked about what has happened in the last 25 years, talking about how terrorist acts have become more and more a part of our reality, how children who have grown up in the last 25 years have known nothing but a world with this reality. But he also talked about hope and grace and the wonderful gift of the church. Oh yea he said some nice things about me too. He made me cry. Damn I knew I should not have put on mascara for this!
The pastor who was the senior pastor at my first call came. Now I had been a pastor for one year as an interim while waiting for a call. Then I get called to be the Associate pastor. He was kind of (okay more than kind of) a control freak. It was um, difficult let us say. But it was only for a couple of years. He preached at my wedding. His son (who died of ALS a few years ago) was my son's godfather. He stayed in my life long after our working relationship. He was a much better friend than a "boss". I love him dearly. He and his wife came. A classmate of mine from PLTS (both of us ended up in Wisconsin) came. My son got up and went to church. They had balloons. One former congregation (that pretty much let about 3 people run me out) sent flowers. It was everything you could want. I love the church. I will remember this day on those days when I forget how much I love the church.
This is my favorite picture from the day. This is what it is all about.