HUGH’S NEWS & VIEWS
A PERSONAL UPDATE
On July 1, I completed a five year part-time (but regular, every Sunday morning) ministry with the Mitchellville, Tennessee Church of Christ in Portland, Tennessee. This is my third time to “retire” from regular, every Lord’s Day preaching.
On July 30, 2000, I retired from forty-two and one-half years of full-time ministry. But on the first Sunday of January 2001, I began preaching every Sunday for the church in Adams, Tennessee. After one year at Adams, I began preaching every Sunday for the LaGuardo Church of Christ in Wilson County, Tennessee and continued there for ten years. My only reason for leaving Adams to go to LaGuardo was because of the distance in the commute from my home in Gallatin, Tennessee to Adams. I loved (and still love) the wonderful people at Adams and have conducted four gospel meetings with them during and after my one year ministry with them.
At the end of 2011, I completed a ten year part-time ministry with the wonderful LaGuardo church and did not preach regularly for the next year and a half (my second “retirement”). Then beginning the first Sunday of June 2013, I began preaching every Sunday morning for the church in Mitchellville. We continue to love the church at LaGuardo and have been called back to speak numerous times for them. We now leave the church at Mitchellville after five years with nothing but the deepest love and the greatest respect for the wonderful people there (my third, and, I think, my final “retirement”)! On Sunday, June 24, they honored us with a nice catered fellowship meal, and on July 1 (our last Sunday) they gave us a beautiful card signed by all the members with a generous monetary gift enclosed.
I feel that the time has come for me to retire from “regular, every Sunday” preaching. I am now 80 years old. I have been preaching for 65 years, having begun while still in high school and throughout my college years. My overall health is excellent, but I am not Moses (who began his greatest work at the age of 80), and I think it is time for me to “cut back.”
Throughout the years since my “retirement” from full-time ministry in 2000 and while engaged in part-time ministry I have continued to preach in gospel meetings, speak on lectureships, and fill special speaking engagements in well over 100 venues extending as far west as Nevada, but concentrated mainly in the Southeast from Kentucky to Florida and from Georgia to Arkansas. These kinds of engagements will continue, D.V.
But I am ready for respite from the responsibilities of “every Sunday” sermon preparation and delivery. I am ready to be able to go to bed on Saturday night without an every-week-responsibility hanging over my head, and being driven from bed by 4:00 or 4:30 on Sunday morning with a Bible class to teach and a sermon to preach. Only those who “have been there and done that” can fully identify with me! It is time for Jan and me to slow down a little more.
Let me be clear, however: I do not intend to stop preaching! I have gospel meetings scheduled for the next two years, as well as lectureship engagements and other special speaking appointments. On July 8, I will begin a meeting with the historic Bethlehem Church of Christ at Tucker’s Crossroads in Wilson County, Tennessee. On August 19, I am scheduled to speak at a Homecoming/Open House service at the Karns Church of Christ in Knoxville, Tennessee where I engaged in my second full-time ministry back in 1959-62. In August, I also am scheduled to speak four times on “Polishing the Pulpit” in Sevierville, Tennessee. In September, I am to preach in a meeting in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. In October, I am to be in a meeting in Cookeville, Tennessee. All of these engagements, of course, depend on “if the Lord wills” (James 4:15).
My writing ministry will continue, D.V. “Hugh’s News & Views” will continue to be a part of my weekly schedule, with several essays already written and in the “pipeline.” I will continue to submit articles to The Spiritual Sword and the Gospel Advocate as per the requests and wishes of the respective editors. Articles from my pen may likewise appear from time to time in other brotherhood publications.
If you need someone to fill in at your congregation on a Sunday morning, a Sunday evening, or a Wednesday evening, if I can assist you in a gospel meeting, a Wednesday night “Summer Series,” or in some other way, I hope you will call on me. I remain available for such engagements. While “retiring” again from preaching regularly every Lord’s Day, I do not intend to become idle. I intend to wear out, not rust out!
July 3, 2018
July 8-11: Bethlehem Church of Christ, Lebanon, TN