Sunday, July 26, 2009

Many Years!

I joined my friends at Lutheran Church of the Resurrection (my former fellowship) this past Sunday morning as their pastor of many years, Robert Hausman, celebrated his last eucharist as their pastor and begins his retirement.

Though I was a member of this parish for just a few short years, it was a time of great learning for me and of profound deepening of faith, thanks in part to the ministry of this faithful pastor.

The first time I visited his church I was completely charmed by it. A small congregation who sings the hymnody and liturgy like they really mean it (they do!), a warm and inviting sanctuary, a complete and faithful liturgy, a wonderful choir, and this rather non-typical (at least for MN) pastor with a really long sermon and sort of a mortician's handshake. For a good Lutheran, what's not to love? And so I went back the next week. And the next. And before too long I became a part of this community of faith and he became a mentor and friend.

And for those next weeks and months and years this pastor with a mortician's handshake taught me. With every liturgy and sermon and meeting and conversation he taught me something. Something about God or about the church or about liturgy or about community or about life. Perhaps most importantly, he helped me to learn much about myself.

But my last last several months as a member at Resurrection were a time of spiritual struggle for me. And during those months while I slogged through the muck of frustration and fear and everything else that sometimes happens when God calls a person to a new place in life, at times I dragged him through a bit of muck, too. Yet at those time he slogged along with me, because that's what a good pastor does. And that is what a good friend does.

Though he has not been my pastor for nearly three years he has continued to be a patient and trusted friend, and in every note or conversation or visit he continues to teach me.

May God grant him many, many years ... I still have alot to learn.

1 comment:

Dixie said...

I had to wince when you talked about dragging this good man through the muck with you. I have done the same with others. May God bless them for their patience with me.

He sounds like a wonderful, loving man. Love is the greatest teacher of all.