At the End of a Pastorate

Meeting by meeting, sermon by sermon,
bible study by bible study, service by service,
the years pass, and you know the church family as your own.
Until the day comes when the time is accomplished,
and you feel God nudging you to leave the role.
Gently you let go of this responsibility and that one,
you say your good-byes, you hear the thank yous.
On this threshold of retirement [leaving] you realize
that what is done is done,
and what is not done is not done,

Read More »

Blessing for a Pastor’s Departure

For everything there is a season,
and a time for every purpose under heaven.
There’s a time to arrive, and a time to go.
A time to work, and a time to rest.
A time to be called, and a time to say good-bye.
There is a time for pastoral ministry:
a time to visit the sick and grieving,
a time to lead worship and preach sermons,
a time to officiate at funerals and weddings,
a time to gather people together in meetings,
a time to lead and shepherd in all circumstances,
in the hurly-burly of congregational life….

Read More »

About Carol Penner

I am a Mennonite pastor currently teaching theology at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, Ontario. I’ve served congregations in Ontario and most recently, Alberta.

I love to write and to lead worship! If you are finding my writing helpful, I would love to hear from you! Feel free to use or adapt the material here, it is all written by me. If printing material, please credit “Copyright Carol Penner” (and say whether you modified it). If publishing, please contact me for permission. Contact me at

Recent Posts

Posts By Month
  • Popular Tags

    Your browser doesn't support the HTML5 CANVAS tag.