After 10 years in ministry, Aurora pastor to bid farewell at send-offs
The Rev. John Bell, pastor at Wesley United Methodist Church in Aurora since 2013, will cap a decade of ministry with farewell send-offs Saturday and Sunday, June 3-4.
He will be guest of honor at a dinner at 5 p.m. Saturday, June 3, in the Gathering Place room at the church, 14 N. May St. in Aurora.
Volunteers will serve a light dinner of sandwiches, salads and dessert.
A reception for the pastor will take place after 10 a.m. worship on Sunday, June 4.
Rev. Bell is Wesley's second-longest-serving pastor in the church's history.
Earlier this year he announced plans to move to Louisville, Ky., where his wife Alison will work with refugee resettlement.
A church spokesperson said, "We are certainly going to miss him. We want to celebrate and thank him for his ministry at Wesley and his outreach and the connections he has made in the city of Aurora."
Writing in the "Wesleyan," the church's monthly magazine, Rev. Bell said,"It's hard to leave after 10 years. I have enjoyed the relationships I've developed both at Wesley United Methodist Church and in the community. I've worked with a lot of gifted staff over these 10 years, but this is the best configuration of staff I've ever worked with.
"And as a community, we made a lot of great memories and did a lot of good, which I look forward to celebrating on June 3. These 10 years certainly have been shaped and formed by the partnership between us. Many of you have led and started new initiatives.
"Some of them were temporary. Others continue today. Your visions, dreams and discernment of God's calling for you makes us who we are today. Your efforts have made a difference and changed lives. I, too, have had visions and dreams and discerned God's call in my life."
The Rev. Rev. Tammy Scott, lead pastor at Sugar Grove UMC, will replace Bell effective July 1. Learn more at wesleyumcaurora.org.