Pastors are teachers, listeners, supporters, preachers and friends. Taking time to thank them for all they do and celebrating them is something we do not do as often as we should.
Here are some tips on how to celebrate the ordination anniversary of your pastor:
• Create a memory book including pictures, letters and sermons from the past and present. This memory book can be given as a token of your congregation’s gratitude for the pastor’s work. The book is also a great way of sharing his or her growth as a pastor.
• Have your members write a letter to the pastor. This letter can include first impressions, memories they shared together, unforgettable sermons, etc. Keep these letters secret and have them sent to a council member’s home so that your pastor will be surprised when all of these letters are presented.
Ask the Sunday school children to color pictures and talk about their favorite memory with the pastor. Have the children share their stories during children’s time at the anniversary service.
Plan an anniversary worship using the pastor’s favorite hymns, a sermon given by someone in the church or community about the pastor’s favorite Bible passage, a children’s sermon given by the children and a prayer for the pastor’s work in your congregation and world.
Collect an offering and present your pastor with a check as a gift.
Give your pastor a new set of robes or vestments to wear as he or she continues their journey as pastor.
Hold a celebratory potluck or dinner in the pastor’s honor, complete with photos, stories and good food.
Celebrating the ordination anniversary of your pastor is a great way to show your congregation’s appreciation. Use these ideas to plan a great celebration.