I remember that song that came out in 1995: “Moving to the country, gonna eat a lotta peaches…” The video’s here. My favorite part is the ninjas at the end!!
Now you may be wondering what this is all about, and perhaps I’m offering humor as a sort of distraction from something that’s difficult to say. So why don’t I just say it?
I’ve been offered an Appointment (church-talk for a job as a Pastor in a church). We’re moving to Grand Island, Nebraska. It’ll happen this summer. We’ll be there for several years.
Here’s a letter we wrote to the folks in La Habra, the church where I currently serve:
Dear Friends –
From the time the Rhodes family arrived at La Habra UMC, we have been welcomed into a “remarkable Church family.” Together we have experienced change and growth, joy and celebration, and have enjoyed the deep fellowship of community.
When I heard that I had not passed my interview for Candidacy and would not be commissioned, the support we experienced was fantastic and more than a little overwhelming. Part of that love and care was concern for where we might find a church to serve starting in July, and many of you have checked in regularly and offered your prayers.
Our collective prayers have been answered, and I have been appointed to a church as of July 1st of this year! And as it turns out, our prayers are sometimes answered in ways that aren’t exactly as we might have expected. Just as we are overjoyed at the opportunity to serve full time in ministry, we also feel some trepidation because the ministry opportunity is in Grand Island, Nebraska. The distance is as great as the opportunity!
We invite your continued prayers as we move into this difficult and exciting transition. Know that we too will continue in prayer for our Church friends and family and the essential ministry that you all offer to the community of La Habra. God continues to mold and stretch us, and though we may be separated by distance, we are eternally connected through God’s love and grace.
Between now and the end of June, we expect to continue in ministry to the members of La Habra UMC. With that said, there will be some time where we may be absent as we begin the work of transitioning our family and household to Nebraska. We are grateful for these next two months in which we will continue to be present with one another.
May we all continue to receive and enjoy God’s blessings.
Pastor Bob, Beth, Cameron, and Zach
And so now I make this announcement even more public, sharing with you – one of a thousand of my closest friends. We invite your kind thoughts, your prayers if that’s your thing, and hope that we’ll be able to return in the next few years.