Yes, today is a big day in the Diocese of Taiwan ~ we have many of our churches saying fond farewells to their clergy as they move on. This was the scene at Good Shepherd Church today as the church said goodbye to Rev. Philip Lin, his wife and family, here they are with the Good Shepherd Senior Warden, Mr. Jake Hung!
Over at St. John’s Cathedral, Taipei our beloved Rev. Elizabeth Wei and her amazing husband, Rev. Peter Chen are finally retiring after serving the last 2 years in charge of the cathedral. Many congratulations to them and we all wish them well!
So Rev. Philip L. F. Lin, 林立峯牧師 is moving over to St. John’s Cathedral as the new dean, starting tomorrow, August 1. In fact he and his family actually moved in yesterday, but came back today to Good Shepherd Church to say their fond farewells. Good Shepherd Chinese Congregation did themselves proud ~ we had a great service, with special prayers for Philip and his family, then a wonderful farewell celebration with lots of yummy delicious food and fun performances from all the different church groups, very ably emceed by one of the youth group, Ms. Lucia Pan.
A GREAT DAY ~ YES!
Philip and his family have only been at Good Shepherd Church for about 18 months, which of course is nowhere near long enough to accomplish all the things they would have liked to have done! Before Good Shepherd, they were at St. James’ Church, Taichung for many many years, which is how I know them so well. Such a lovely family! Philip’s wife, Linda set up a community service project at St. James which is still going strong, and she’s been very involved in community outreach at Good Shepherd. Daniel, their older son is hopefully just coming to the end of about 3 years of treatment for leukemia which he has borne with great fortitude and resilience, and during the course of it all has learned how to do amazing tricks and skilled displays with a yo-yo. He still needs a lot of prayer for his health, his education – which has suffered, and for his new school. Their younger son, Caleb will also be starting a new school. Here they are with their Good Shepherd ‘Graduation Certificates’, presented today!
For 3 months from April to July, Philip had the great privilege of visiting New York, wonderfully hosted by Trinity Church, Wall Street, Manhattan and St. Thomas Church, Fifth Avenue, New York City, and with many opportunities to visit other churches and church projects, theological colleges and interesting places, as well as improve his English, all with the view to helping him prepare for his new role as dean of St. John’s Cathedral. Linda was also able to visit New York for the last few weeks too.
Today, the amazing Mrs. Lai 賴亮惠 from Good Shepherd Church – she was in the performances of the choir group, the seniors group and the Grace Cell Group – spoke on behalf of many when she said that there were 3 things that they would specially remember Philip for, his broad smile, his great sermons, and his very talented and lovely wife! Mrs. Lai said that when Philip went off to New York, his wife Linda replaced Philip helping out with many of the church groups, including teaching the seniors Taiko Drums!
Good Shepherd is very much like one big family, and Sundays are very busy as all the different groups meet for fellowship, following the church lunch.
So today was really extra special!
And so, many prayers and blessings for Rev. Philip Lin and his family, and also many prayers and blessings for Rev. Keith C. C. Lee 李鎮丞牧師 and his family – Keith officially becomes the new rector of Good Shepherd Church as from tomorrow. He’s currently vicar of Grace Church, Tainan, so they are moving north and up to the capital city, a big change for them!
And tomorrow my children’s summer classes start at Good Shepherd Church for 4 weeks ~ praying for the children, the helpers and teachers and all our activities together!
Thank you Good Shepherd Church members ~ for a wonderful day and great farewell celebration!