Isaiah, our oldest son, took a field trip to Raleigh, North Carolina earlier this year. The administrative staff at his school opted to have his class ride the train rather than rent charter buses. And even though the other option would’ve been a little less expensive, they decided to take the train instead because they wanted to create memorable moments rather than just a forgetful field trip.
I was fortunate enough to be able to be a chaperone on the adventure. And to be honest, the train ride was one of my favorite things. The sound that the steel locomotive made as it rolled down the tracks, the smell of the cabin, and the friendliness of the staff and the “loco pilot” (what a great job title), all made for a really a great experience.
All of this got me thinking about transitions in general and specifically about the transition in pastoral leadership we are undertaking at Unity UMC. In another month, Pat, Alison, Eliana, Ashlyn and Ian will be jumping on board a proverbial moving train here at Unity UMC. They are relocating their family to join in the work that God is doing in and among the people in this particular place.
It’s true that the mission of the church will continue while they are in the process of moving their family, jumping on board and getting settled in for the ride. And, I believe, this time of transition allows us a unique opportunity to demonstrate the radical hospitality of God. I invite you to join me in praying for the Hannon family...and I also invite you to put feet to your prayers by making sure that this new family feels the presence of God in the way that we welcome them here.
As a soon-to-be “former pastor at Unity UMC,” I am not as much sad as I am excited and hopeful to hear about the ways that the Holy Spirit continues to work in and through this community.