Thread: Our priest is retiring Board: Oblivion / Ship of Fools.

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Posted by Cameron PM (# 18142) on :
Last Sunday, our priest-in-charge announced his intentions to retire the last of September. It's unfortunate that he has been dealing with a great deal of sadness and depression, and due to that I will ask you for prayers for him.

Now that he's leaving, may I ask your recommendations as to what I should do regarding his last service (I'm the organist), and what I/we (the choir) should give him as a gift?
Posted by Piglet (# 11803) on :
Does he have any favourite music (organ/choral/hymns) that you know of that would be appropriate?

It may be worth your while conferring with him; make a few notes of possibilities, and see what he thinks.
Posted by L'organist (# 17338) on :
Depends on how good your choir is, and whether you want the farewell choral item to be part of the service or at a party after the service.

For an anthem during the service how about Wesley's Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace: very beautiful, good words, unfussy accompaniment; if you want something unaccompanied there is Faire is the heaven by William Harris.

If he's been supportive of you and the music, what about Wesley's Choral Song & Fugue at the end; alternatively, does he have a favourite organ work? When my last PinC left I rolled out the Carillon de Westminster because it was a particular favourite; and at the party after we sang We'll keep a welcome in the hillside because he was Welsh!
Posted by Schroedinger's cat (# 64) on :
I would strongly suggest that you talk to him and sound out ideas for both of your questions. IME, clergy don't like to be taken by surprise.

If you can identify one piece of music that is special to him, and one other that reflects the church's good wishes for him in the future, that is a good basis for his final service, I would have thought.

For a gift, see what he wants that will serve him in the future. There is a danger that retiring clergy are presented with some item that is relevant to their clerical work, but not to their future, and so it serves as a reminded of what they have given up. It should be a reminder of the good times, but be highly relevant for their future too, which may have little connection or involvement with a church.
Posted by Sparrow (# 2458) on :
How about John Rutter's "The Lord Bless You and Keep You".
Posted by L'organist (# 17338) on :
No, no, no!
If it must be Rutter then A Clare Benediction is better, and shorter.
Posted by Qoheleth. (# 9265) on :
\urban myth

Once chosen by an organist on just such an occasion:

Green pastures are before us,
which yet we have not seen;
bright skies will soon be o'er us,
where the dark clouds have been:

[Big Grin]

Posted by Rowen (# 1194) on :
When I retire.... A garden shop gift which could be a voucher, but not necessssarily.
A book or music shop voucher.
A voucher for an experience, carefully chosen after conversation with me. YOU may yearn for a bungy jump, but not me.
Posted by Leorning Cniht (# 17564) on :
My preference is for a retirement gift that can't be bought - some suitable piece of memorabilia from the job. In the case of a priest, I might go for a crucifix carved from wood reclaimed from the old altar rail, or something of that nature.
Posted by Cameron PM (# 18142) on :
We're chewing over "The Lord Bless You and Keep You" and then "Through All the Changing Scenes of Life."

Might pool together for a big petrol card or something.
Posted by bib (# 13074) on :
We sang The Lord Bless You and Keep You when a minister left and it was well received. We also presented the minister with a lovely water colour of our area which he loved. Maybe also sing psalm 150 Stanford setting which always goes with a bang.

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