Goodbye and Thank You

St. Paul’s letter to the Philippians: 1:3-6.

I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, thankful for your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. And I am sure that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

This scripture passage vividly comes to mind as I prepare to leave St Joseph’s Parish Malvern after four blessed years and enter a new chapter of life. I must say the last few weeks have been an emotional roller- coaster for me: apprehension, excitement, sadness, exhaustion and being overwhelmed by the love and affirmation that I have received. In the midst of it all the overwhelming feeling I have is one of gratitude for the time I have spent here.

When I arrived here at St Joseph’s Malvern in late January 2018, I experienced a warm welcome from this parish community. That warm welcome has remained and has sustained me throughout the last 4 years. That spirit of welcome shows what Church is meant to be all about, and I thank you for that. It reminds me that I must keep that spirit of welcome alive in my own ministry.

I would like to acknowledge and offer my thanks to the Parish Staff of St Joseph’s Malvern for their dedication and support. I would also like to acknowledge and offer thanks to all those in our parish community who have stepped forward by becoming involved in the various ministries of our parish. No amount of thanks can convey the appreciation I feel for all you have done and for all you are doing.

Thank you all for being parishioners here at St Joseph’s Malvern. Getting to know you has been a privilege. I leave confident that the support I received will be offered to my successor Fr Greg Brett CM when he arrives in the first week of February. I ask for your prayers as I take my new role as Provincial of the Congregation of the Mission (Vincentian Fathers and Brothers) in Oceania. Please be assured you will remain in mine.

I wish you all every blessing for the future.

Fr. Alan