Monday, July 16, 2007

Saying Goodbye...

It's difficult to say goodbye, even when you know that "goodbye" is never final.

Yesterday I said goodbye to two friends and their three kids. I said goodbye to two of the best youth workers a youth pastor could ask for. For almost 8 years, Craig and Melissa ministered alongside me and the rest of our youth ministry team, ministering to our middle school students. There were years where they took on significant responsibility for planning aspects of our youth meetings. There were many retreats attended and many late nights where Melissa and Craig sat with, prayed with, and counseled with middle school students (and parents). As years went by, these middle school students became high school and college students and Melissa and Craig remained a big part of their faith journey.

Melissa, in many ways, was the female youth pastor here. She didn't have the title or pay, but she got the phone calls (either from me or parents) when one of our girls was in need. Craig and Melissa were committed to our youth and committed to youth ministry. A few years back I had the budgetary wherewithal to able to bring them with me to the National Youth Workers Convention. A couple years after that, having some vacation time, they went on their own to the convention!

(Get this- one time I received a call from Melissa..."Hey Bri-...I was just wondering if it would be okay with you if I organized a group of girls to attend the Revolve tour?" 'Would it be okay?'....is that hysterical or what?!?! Yeah, please don't offer our girls a great weekend for which I'll have to do little to no planning...ha!)

So Craig and Melissa are leaving...but they'll still be ministering to middle schoolers. Craig has accepted a job at a Young Life camp that is primarily a middle school camp. May God bless them and continue to bless their ministry.

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3 Comments:

Blogger marko said...

dude, moments like this, as rare as they are, are some of the best moments in youth ministry. how cool that craig and melissa are continuing to live out their calling to youth ministry, now in a full-time way! what a legacy.

4:47 PM  
Blogger JayAreJr said...

I'll miss them too. Melissa has been a big help with my daughters over the years and over the past few weeks as well.

That a gift they have been to our community.

5:04 PM  
Blogger Rev. Johnny Agurkis said...

It's tougher to say goodbye to solid volunteers than it is to say goodbye to solid kids. Blessings on them as God opens this next stage of life and ministry to them, and blessings on you as you fill in the their gap with new folks.

4:13 PM  

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