Gatherings for Refreshment and Retired Ministers

28 Nov 2021 by Rev Dr John Squires in: Letters, Thoughts, News

Gatherings for Refreshment and Retired Ministers

From Rev Dr John Squires
Presbytery Minister - Wellbeing

The Moderator, the Rev. Simon Hansford, has been visiting the Presbytery this week. On Monday, he spent time with a fine gathering of folks from across the Presbytery—25 retired ministers, lay pastors, and deaconesses, with spouses and minister’s widows—over lunch at Wesley Forrest church. The gathering was both an opportunity for the Presbytery to express the gratitude of the church to these faithful people, who have served so diligently and enthusiastically for decades; and to hear some words of encouragement and challenge from the Moderator. Presbytery Ministers Andrew and John, and PRC Chairperson Elizabeth, joined with Presbytery Co-Chair Ross in welcoming the group for the occasion. A good time, it would seem, was had by all!

On Tuesday, the Moderator joined with Ben Gilmour (Uniting Mission and Education) and Co-Chair Ross Kingham to lead a refresher-retreat day for ministry leaders. 22 lay leaders, pastors, deacons, and ministers gathered at the Greenhills Conference Centre west of Canberra.

Ross invited us to consider what it means to be pain-bearers in ministry. Simon posed two questions for consideration: how have we been caring for ourselves in this past season? and how do we intend to care for ourselves in the coming season? Ben offered poems for reflection on our call to ministry, the invitation to a regular sabbath, and our hopes for the future.