A Service of Thanksgiving and Tribute was held for Uniting Church WA Ministers who have retired over the past year, and also those who have deceased. The worship service was help in the Wesley College Chapel on the Saturday afternoon of the 44th Annual Meeting of the Synod of WA.
Susy Thomas, Moderator of the Uniting Church WA, and her chaplains, Rev Nalin Perera and Alison McCubbin, led the service, giving thanks to people who have dedicated their life to serving the church.
Ministers who have retired in the past year include:
Rev Rodney March: served in the Upper Avon Parish, Applecross Mt Pleasant Parish, and as the Chaplain at Great Southern Grammar School in Albany.
Rev Lesley de Grussa: served in Mandurah and South Mandurah Uniting Churches, the Frontier Services Murchison Patrol Meekatharra, and Beldon Iluka Uniting Church.
Rev David Tressler: served at Dianella, Denmark, Scots Albany, All Saints Floreat, Kalamunda and Forrestfield Uniting Churches.
Rev Ken Devereux: served in Moora, as well Rockingham, Collie-Darkan, Melville, Yokine and Dianella Uniting Churches, and Chaplain at Royal Perth Hospital.
“We give thanks to God for the many ways you, Rodney, Lesley, David and Ken have proclaimed the gospel, celebrated the sacraments, exercised pastoral care and equipped the saints to share in God’s mission,” Susy said.
“For everything there is a season, a time for every matter under heaven. So, too, there is a time for movement, new adventure, fields of service not yet touched. With love, we send you forth to continue to love and serve the Lord.”
Six Uniting Church WA Ministers passed away over the year, and their lives were celebrated and honoured.
Rev Garlett OAM: Chairperson of the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC). Rev Garlett worked tirelessly for the Covenantal relationship between the Uniting Church and the UAICC, and reconciliation in the wider community.
Rev Ken Williams: 14th Moderator of the Uniting Church WA, as well as having served at Uniting Church in the City, Wellington Regional Mission, and as Business Manager of the Uniting Church WA.
Rev Neville Campbell: Served at Willetton and Wembley Downs Uniting Church, as well as the Uniting Church in Australia, Frontier Services, UAICC, and Beananging Kwuurt Institute.
Rev James Henry Cain (Jim) OA: Serving at Perth Wesley Mission, and in South Australia, Victoria and the United States of America.
Rev Pat Burvill: Served as a Missionary in Thailand and in Katanning, Kojonup, Albany, Mount Barker and the Central Wheatbelt, as well as Chaplain at Presbyterian Ladies’ College.
Pastor John Ainsley Dolling: Served as Port Hedland Patrol Minister, working tirelessly among refugees to relieve trauma, improve conditions and to advocate for change.
Susy led the congregation in prayer to end the service.
“Let us rejoice in your presence as we come together to celebrate and remember their lives, who have served you over many years,” she said.