Text word: 1st Thessalonians 5:6, ‘Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober.’
Retirement of District Elder Gordon McQueen and Evangelist John Laverty.
Our district apostle mentioned that it is a special time of Advent which gives us a wonderful feeling as soon we will experience Christmas. That anticipation we can also apply to seeking and awaiting the return of Jesus Christ.
Just as the choir really touched our hearts and we appreciate their music. We want to use our gifts for the profit of all. We want to give those gifts in the congregation.
Give the best of ourselves out of love.
Referring to text word, he highlighted that we should not stop loving or praying, let us remain awake and be realistic. Being mindful and discerning of what is good for our future and being more aware of our heavenly Father.
Jesus’ heart was open to all. He didn’t differentiate.
Are we similar to Him in this respect?
Let us look more into the future, to our God’s plan for us to be together.
Are we prepared for that? Lay your hope into the hands of our heavenly Father. All the good comes from Him.
District Elder McQueen assisted.
‘It is a great privilege to be with you this morning. We each have gift of the Holy Spirit and the question arises in my soul, how profitable has my own contribution been?
Challenges are always all around us, however, if we have someone with the right gifts and talents working with us, that makes the team successful, can we apply that to our own congregations?
Can we be disciples? Our core value is that we are part of the body of Christ.
Please do not quench the Spirit! Let us continue together; every one of us has a part to play.
Serving, supporting and taking it upon ourselves to stir up those gifts we have.’
Bishop Beutz was called to assist and then Evangelist Laverty served out of his heart, saying:
‘Everything we have is through the grace of our God. We walk our own walk of faith to reach the Kingdom of God. No-one can give us a piggy back and despite the many changes around us God’s love and the gospel remains constant. When we have worries and cares remember our Lord takes us by the hand. Stay faithful and receive a wonderful treasure.’
Apostle Uli Falk.
‘I’m deeply thankful to be in this service.
Let us have an attitude where we want to contribute to our congregation.
When Jesus was alive so many did not recognise who He was. They stuck to tradition and their hearts were not opened to love. We belong to a wonderful circle and are privileged to go to church. Let us be open for all nations, that they find the love of Jesus in us.’
Three children received Holy Sealing and then our District Apostle Krause retired two ministers, District Elder McQueen and Evangelist Laverty.
Both ministers served 34 years in the Lord’s work.
District Apostle Krause added: ‘I know you are full of thankfulness, that this moment is here. Both of you have lived lives of a humble servant. I know you will not stop here in this moment, we have a view to the future for you and our brothers and sisters.
This is a moment that moves my heart as I stand here in front of such experienced ministers. You have both made the work of God rich. You took gifts out of the hands of our heavenly Father and brought it into the work of God.
You had open hearts for me and I want to bring a personal thanks for the support you gave the apostle ministry.
We are so thankful to your wives and families for supporting you also.
Throughout the years you have supported and been able to give advice to God’s servants.
And for those souls who have departed into eternity, you both had such hearts of love for them and they were able to say that you were with them, giving confidence, love and support. You transmitted the teachings of the apostle ministry to the congregations and we thank you with all our hearts.’
Bishop Middleton was commissioned Rector for Corby and Hitchin congregations and District Rector for the north district
Priest Kelvin Juma commissioned Rector for Cambridge congregation.
Many enjoyed some time together in fellowship before travelling home.