Jenny and I have written our formal “farewell” letter to the congregation. It probably won’t be mailed out until next week, but in the meantime, I’m posting it here.
May 9, 2013
Dear Members and Friends of Coffeyville First UMC,
As many of you know, we are nearing the end of our time as your pastors here at Coffeyville First United Methodist Church. Our last Sunday here will be June 9, 2013. On July 1, 2013, Pastor Nicole Schwartz, will begin her appointment as your new pastor. During the last three Sundays in June, there will be three different lay persons filling the pulpit: June 16—Mike Mason; June 23—Dorcia Johnson; and June 30—Kay Kile. We will still be available through June 30 for any emergencies that come arise; however, we will be moving after June 9, in order to allow the Trustees to begin the work of replacing floor coverings in the parsonage before Nicole moves in. During this time, lay volunteers will be available pastoral care.
We want to take this opportunity to let you know that we have really enjoyed our eight years serving with you here in Coffeyville. We have developed many relationships throughout our time here, and we pray that it has been a time of growth for you as it has been for us. We want to thank you for being Elizabeth’s church community during her pre-school and elementary school years. She has truly felt at home here.
Over the past eight years, we have seen many changes here, and we have been honored to be a part of your lives and a part of the ministry of this congregation. After June, we will no longer be your pastors, but we hope to remain your friends. You will forever be in our hearts as a part of our journey. The next leg of our journey is taking us to Abilene, Kansas, where we will be the pastors of Abilene First UMC.
While we will miss you all, we are also excited for you and your new pastor, Nicole Schwartz. Nicole brings many gifts for ministry and a passion for ministry that is contagious.
Thank you once again for all you have done, and may God continue to bless your lives and your ministry in the years to come.
Grace and Peace,
John and Jenny Collins
We’ll miss you.