23.6.11

Farewell Parties


Josh and I have been overwhelmed in the last couple of weeks by how supportive people have been as we begin our move away from Aberystwyth.  We’ve been inundated with kind words, gifts and offers of support and help.
It makes leaving really, really hard as it highlights how many amazing friends we have here, and what a strong support base we have amongst our church family. We’re going to really miss it.
Over the last week we have had two leaving parties.
Our first, last Friday was hosted by my homegroup. In St Mike’s, because the church is so big we split off into lots of smaller groups who meet weekly during the week. This allows us to build friendships, study the bible and pray for one another in a way that is sometimes hard when there are so many people to say hello to on a Sunday.

Two of the ladies from my group organised a dinner party for all of our group and their families. It was AMAZING. It was held in a beautiful home and they set up a long table with candles and wine, and Pimms and bread and nibbles. We had lasagne and lots of types of puddings. Josh kept leaning over to me and saying “I can’t believe this all for us, this is so nice, I can’t believe they would do this for us”.
My homegroup is one of the things I’m going to miss most about Aber. They’re a second family and we have gone through so much together in the last five years. I can’t really put into words how it feels not to be part of the group anymore, but Friday night was a great way to say goodbye.

Our second party was on Monday, and if anything it was even harder.
When a staff member leaves the church we have a 'Rectory Tea’ together. We eat good food and then the person who is leaving gets honoured by the Rector and by their fellow members of staff. I think I’ve tried to express in my blog how much I love my job but to hear my colleagues {and best friends} expressing their gratefulness for my work and friendship was really hard. I cried, others cried…it was all very emotional, but also a great way to end four years.



We’ve also been overwhelmed by the gifts we have received from people. We have been blown away by their generosity.
We’ve received flowers and cards. The staff gave me a Pampered Chef muffin tray which is awesome! We also received a trivet from one friend and a Vicar’s Wife Cookbook from another  {LOVE!}. Along with my cleaning basket I see a definite trend emerging!
We’ve also been given ridiculously generous gifts towards our holiday this summer. Over and over again we’re just overwhelmed by how lovely people are being.
I don’t want to go!

5 comments:

  1. I find even just contemplating leaving my church family hard; and it doesn't look like this will happen for a number of years yet. But I remember that even when you're away from your family, they're still your family, and that's the same with church.

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  2. I love that you mention having Pimms! That was one of my favorite drinks while in the UK. Pimms and lemonade... Ahhh. Sounds like you have a really nice group of people there, and I'm sure you'll easily find some more great friends when you move :)

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  3. Aww, Rachel, You're such a lovely lady. It's gonna be sad not having you both around, but I'm glad that you have been appreciated and I'm glad you've had all the experiences and friendships you have. I hope you have a smooth transition, but I also hope come back to visit! :] xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx LOVE!!

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  4. You're a very lucky girl! You have such a great group of people there!!
    I'm sure you'll find wonderful people when you move.
    I'll be praying for you and Josh. :)

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  5. How hard!!!! It's so great that you've made such amazing friendships through the years there, but it makes it so much harder to say goodbye. I love how everyone is embracing you as you get ready to leave. In a way, it makes it easier, knowing that you'll have that many people who will be praying for you and always remember you. Your 'goods' look so great! I used to sell Pampered Chef, so I know how awesome that gift is! And that cookbook makes me laugh!! I love it! Isn't it nice that you have this blog to stay in touch with your friends? They can get a glimpse into your new life as it unfolds on your blog :) Yay for that!

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