As most of you are aware, Carolyn and I have been on a period of extended leave since the beginning of September. We would like to thank the Trustees and Leaders for stepping into the breach in order to make this possible. It has been invaluable in allowing us the time and space to rest, recuperate and more especially, to consider our role in the church and its future.
I was asked by the Trustees to take the position of Senior Pastor in April 2008 and officially employed for that purpose from November of that year. From the start I saw this as a transitional arrangement but have now continued in the role for some 7 years. It has been an eventful time but a real honour and a pleasure to serve you all.
However, transition cannot last forever and we are fully convinced that it is now time for a new chapter in the life of this church family. As a result we have come to the conclusion that it is time for me to resign my position as Senior Pastor in order that the church may move forward under new leadership. This is not a decision that we have made lightly or without long consideration but rather it is a growing conviction before God that this is His purpose for us as a couple and for the wider Trinity family.
The recent production of the Report by Phil Hills and David Shearman has only served to endorse and confirm that decision. We have previously apologised for past failure and today we would like to do so again unequivocally. We continue to hold the views expressed in our joint statement to the church on 2 November 2014 – almost exactly one year ago.
We would also like to express our heartfelt thanks to both Phil & David. They have placed their own lives and ministries on hold in order to help us all find a solution to the problems of the past and to enable this church to grow towards a healthy future. Their wisdom and experience has proved invaluable and we owe them a huge debt of gratitude, as a couple and as a church family. We also appreciate that their input would not have been possible without the backing of their respective families. Today we want to thank Lynn & Dorothy for all that they have done in the background in terms of unselfish love and support.
On a personal level, although I will no longer be Senior Pastor, we do not anticipate moving away and look forward to being regular members of Trinity Church once we are fully back to strength and after time has elapsed for someone new to be firmly in place. This is the church where we have spent most of our lives, we have many friends here and we believe that the bonds that God has forged between us as individuals are eternal. We truly appreciate the love and support that has been expressed to us by so many of you especially in the difficult times.
Trinity Church is also the place where we have raised our family and now watch our grandchildren grow. And with that in mind, we would like to thank our own children for standing with us through all the ups and downs of the past 7 years. You have been a Godsend!
To conclude, we believe that the best is yet to come – not only for this church family but for us as a couple. This is a great community of faith and we are confident that the future development of the church and school will bring honour to God – to Him be all the glory.