A Farewell Litany for an Interim Pastor

An elder: A church community is constantly changing. Babies are born and baptized into the faith community, individuals and families join with us and sometimes move away, loved ones are called home to Jesus. It is important for us to recognize and mark well these times of passage - these endings and beginnings. Today we bid farewell and Godspeed to Pastor [name] who has served us as Interim Pastor for the past [number] months, as his/her time with us has now drawn to a close.

Interim Pastor: I thank you, the people of [church name], for the love, kindness, and support you have shown me these past months. I thank you for accepting my leadership and receiving me as pastor in your midst for this time of transition. I recall with joy the many things we have been able to accomplish together, and with sadness the things we were not able to do. I trust that God will continue to work in your midst as you embrace new leadership.

Another elder: We receive with thankfulness the ministry you have offered us in the time we have shared. We accept that you now leave us to minister at [church/ministry name if known]. We bid farewell to you trusting that God goes with you on that journey. Your presence among us will not be forgotten. We are grateful for the time you have been with us.

An elder: Do you, the people of [church name], now release Pastor [name] from the duties of Interim Pastor?

Congregation: We do.

Another elder: Do you, Pastor [name], release [church name] from turning to you and relying on you to serve them as Pastor?

Interim Pastori: I do.

An elder: Let us pray.
O God of hope, whose love for us is trustworthy and true, we are grateful for the ways we have grown as a congregation during the season of transition; you have used Pastor Shari’s gifts for the furthering of your kingdom among us. In looking toward tomorrow, we trust your hand to guide us. Send Pastor [name and their family] forward in your grace, by the power of your faithful Spirit. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

Another elder: Go now, Pastor [name], with our blessing, surrounded by our love and led by the promises of God, the presence of Christ Jesus, and the guidance of the Holy Spirit. And all of God’s people joined their voices to say, Amen!

 Litany may be lead by any appropriate church leader whose voice adds meaning and dignity to marking this time of passage.