Till We Meet Again

Sometimes, when people leave churches, pastors give sighs of relief. They may even whisper a prayer of thanks to God. Other times, they are sorry and sad to see people go. It was my unhappy privilege to say goodbye to five godly young people on Sunday last. Having spent a gap year at Netherside Hall doing children’s work at Yorkshire Camps, their time was drawing to a close. Some are off to university, or work, or marriage. Soon they return to Bavaria, Cheshire, London and Wiltshire. An older, rural chapel such as ours really benefited from fellowshipping with them; when camps allowed, they were with us twice a Sunday, and mid-week, too. Two of them preached in our pulpit, and I regret not getting them up sooner.

To mark their last Sunday with me and their penultimate one at the chapel, we walked up Pendle Hill from the Nick. Although it was a sweltering 29 degrees below, the lofty heights of Pendle afforded a welcome breeze, and we picnicked overlooking Barley, Colne and, indeed, the little chapel at which we had worshipped. After returning for the evening service, we were given strawberries and ice cream in the upper room.

I have prayed for each of the five. I asked the Lord to bless their years to come and honour them with useful service. I hope they will keep in touch with the chapel to which they meant so much.

God be with you till we meet again;

loving counsels guide, uphold you,

may the Shepherd’s care enfold you;

God be with you till we meet again.