Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Clerical Memories

Carol has suggested that I share some photos of myself in my clerical garb. I’m egotistical enough to do so! 

The following photos were taken ten years ago, on the final Sunday of my pastorate at St. John United Church of Christ in Cannelton, Indiana:

This was the beginning of the farewell service on the last Sunday of my 11 year pastorate at St. John. I am standing at the lectern.

Many folks said nice things about my ministry. This is Buddy, who chaired the search committee that called me to pastor St. John.

My family, including my Uncle John, came from Louisville to the service.

Litany of Parting: to my right is Steve, who was president of the congregation

There were many good-byes

I have/had a large collection of clerical stoles. When I took these out of the closet of my spare bedroom this morning, I realized that quite a few are missing. I wonder if any of my several guests who stayed in that room walked away with them—and, if they did, why they did so.


  1. You look good in a stole! I think you should wear one every day! ;)

  2. I, too, was going to say that you look good in the stole (and robe), but didn't think of Thomas' good idea of suggesting you wear one every day.

    I especially like the "forgive" stole and the one with all of the faces of people.

    Thanks for sharing the photos. I enjoyed getting to see you at work. You look so natural and at home in the clothing and the setting. I also think you'd make a great monk!

  3. I think your robe is missing a few beads! LOL.

  4. You look wonderful! I bet you enjoyed reliving those memories too! Although not the ones of your visitors! I've just read that entry! Good riddance! (I know it was a few year ago....)
    Did I mention how lovely you look?? ;o)

  5. I love the children of many nations stole had planned to buy that for our Pastor until he changed churches, I actually made one for him that the Sunday school children helped with. I simply sewed it up. Maybe I should go into making them.

  6. How awful if your 'guests' stole your stoles! What on earth would they want with them? The mind boggles!

    You look very nice Nick, it must have been an emotional day for you.

  7. Thomas: Thank you. I don’t believe I have worn a stole since, as moderator of the local UCC association, I participated in the ordination of a new clergywoman.

    Carol: Thank you. I collected some really neat stoles through the years. The Forgive stole I wore during Lent; the (faces of) Children I wore whenever the liturgical color was white and I wanted to emphasize the oneness of humankind.

    As for being a monk, I have seriously considered that vocation more than one. I believe that I would make an excellent Franciscan.

    The Lone Beader: You are right! I have no stoles with beads on them!

  8. Daffy: Yes, the memories became fresh when I looked at those photos. I truly miss the honor and joy of writing and leading worship service.

    Yes, my visitors have been destructive in many ways besides trashing my home and stealing from me. Each time I took them in they were “homeless” and each time refused my offer to help them get into a shelter. It took three such occasions over three or so years for me to learn my lesson.

    Sassy Mama Bear: The faces of children stole is one of my two favorites. The other is another “white” stole with a rainbow running from the top down the right side and the word “celebrate” running down the left.

    I am sure making stoles would be rewarding, both spiritually (creating beauty for worship) and financially (the stoles I own cost between $50.00 and $600.00 each).

    Akelamalu: I actually can’t identify my guests as having stole the stoles; it’s just that everything else that has gone missing from my house was taken by them. Tomorrow, when Tasha comes to work, I am going to ask her to search the closet in the spare bedroom for the missing stoles. It is a very large closet and is is possible that some or all of the missing stoles are still in it. I pray that’s the case, but I fear that they have really gone missing. If she finds them, I share photos of them.

    Yes, that farewell service was especially emotional. St. John was the first church I pastored after graduating from seminary and being ordained, I was there for 11 years (the 2nd longest pastorate in the congregations 150+ year history0, and the primary reason I left was to move to Louisville in an attempt to salvage my 30 year marriage—an attempt that failed.

  9. Way cool pics, Nick! I was kinda curious whether they ever let you wear one of those cool pointy hats. I love those things. But I guess you didn't have one. That's too bad, you'da looked totally rad!

  10. Baba Doodlius : Thanks! I don’t have any “cool pointy hats.” My robe—it’s called an alb—does have a hood, though.

  11. very fancy!!! it suits you for sure :)

  12. Nick, Carol's idea was brilliant. This has been a real treat. Are transcripts of your sermons available anywhere on your blog? Or anywhere online? I realize ten years ago was before the days of online sermons, but I'm wondering did you save your notes?

    I've got my eye on the stole with the peoples on it. When do I get to be your guest?

    Sorry. Bad joke.

  13. Cool photos. You look handsome in a robe.