BETHEL COLLEGE MENNONITE CHURCH
June 12, 2022
Prelude—When Morning Guilds the Skies (arr. Lind)—Verlene Garber, organ
Angel 94—Caleb Koontz—piano
Christ Candle Lighting—Nathan Koontz
Scripture Reading—John 11: 1-16—Jill Robb
Call to Worship—Nathan Koontz
*Hymn—Brethren, We Have Met to Worship—VT 25
Scripture Reading—John 11:17-37—Jill Robb
Children’s Conversation—Renee Reimer
Hymn—We Are One in the Spirit—VT 387
Scripture Reading—John 11: 38-44—Jill Robb
Sermon—Slowing Down and Remembering—Renee Reimer
Litany of Blessing and Release—Ada Schmidt-Tieszen, Brad Kohlman, BCMC Church Board; Kathy Neufeld Dunn, Western District Conference
Prayers of God’s People—Nathan Koontz
*Hymn—The Lord Lift You Up—VT 832
Postlude—We are one in the Spirit (arr. Nelsen)—Verlene Garber
* You are invited to stand
VT = Voices Together
Audio visual—Francis Toews
Pastors—Renee Reimer, Nathan Koontz, Todd Schlosser
Litany of Release and Blessing
Church moderator: As sisters and brothers in this faith community, today we give thanks for your almost three years of ministry among us, Renee. We say farewell to you, and we ask God to bless the journey ahead – yours and this congregation’s work to move forward.
Congregation: All praise be to our God. In God there is one Body, one Spirit. There is one hope in God’s call to us all.
Renee: We have shared worship and work–much of it during complex circumstances. I’ve gotten to know you in the park, over Zoom and text, and in this church building. We’ve worked hard to creatively craft consistent faith formation ministries in the midst of challenges. We enjoyed bible studies, games, and service projects. I treasure the ways we followed Jesus together.
Church moderator: This is a time of many feelings: sadness, joy, loss, and thankfulness. It’s the goodbyes that are hard, but we have accomplished much during these years together, and we give God thanks and praise for you and your fruitful ministry.
Renee: I leave with cherished memories of our times together. You have shaped my faith. You have helped me see and seek God’s presence in our lives and in the community. Thank you for your care, your creativity, your encouragement, and your hope along the way.
Church moderator elect: God has blessed us richly through your ministry. We now bless you as you begin a new chapter in your life and ministry journey.
Conference Minister: As you, the people of Bethel College Mennonite Church, bless Renee as she leaves this
congregation, do you now release her from her pastoral responsibilities and relationships?
Congregation: With the help of God, we do. We give thanks for Renee’s faithful leadership and now acknowledge this transition in the life of our congregation. We will pray for God’s continued guidance in her life.
Conference Minister: Renee, do you release the congregation from its loyalty to you as their pastor? Do you release the members from turning to you and depending on you to provide the pastoral ministries they seek?
Renee: With the help of God, I do. When we meet in the future, we will be siblings in Christ, not pastor and church members. I will hold the congregation and its ministries in my prayers.
Conference Minister: Renee, may God bless and guide you on the next steps of your journey. May you ultimately form new, caring relationships in a new and beloved community, wherever that may be. May God bless the rest and renewal that you seek and the work that you will undertake next. May God bless and guide this congregation into a hopeful future as it continues kingdom work and seeks new leadership. May God bless and guide each of us in the new relationship that we now will share. Amen.