Rev. Father Gregory Schmidt
Farewell Reception for Father Greg – Betty Colaneri - June 30, 2019
Thank you everyone for coming this afternoon to honour and thank Father Greg for his time with us.
Even though we knew this day would come someday, we were all hoping it would be much later than sooner.
On behalf of the Pastoral Council, we would like to thank you for all your incredible work and dedication with activities of the council especially with the ministry appreciation and parish directory. Your calm demeanor, wonderful sense of humour and quick wit made our meetings and all we did much more enjoyable.
As Maya Angelou says, I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
Father Greg you were awesome at that. You made everyone here at St. Thomas More feel important, listened to and appreciated.
So how do you adequately convey into words the gratitude for the blessing it has been having you at our parish, Father Greg.
For being the perfect example of Jesus in our midst with your humble service to God’s people.
For how our lives have been inspired and enriched during this time that you have walked with us.
Preparing for today, a story I once read came to mind.
Life is like a train ride. We get on. We ride. We get off. We get back on and ride some more. There are delays and at certain stops, surprises. Some of these will translate into great moments of joy, some will result in profound sorrow. We journey filled with hopes, dreams, challenges, setbacks and goodbyes and luggage filled with the memories of love, affection, friendship, guidance and the presence of those we encounter. There are those who board the train and who eventually become very important to us and cherish and even though they may step off, they have impacted our life forever.
We have come to the next station and though you have to leave St. Thomas More, your journey continues at another station with a new adventure. With God as our conductor, we don’t know where the journey will lead but we hope you return to our station and step back on at St. Thomas More again.
Thank you for the enjoyable journey! You have contributed to our luggage by enriching our lives with an everlasting impression.
We will truly miss you and even though we can’t hide the tears, we are happy for you as you board at the next station. As you journey, your luggage will always be packed with a part of St. Thomas More wrapped in wonderful memories along with our best wishes and God’s blessings.
There are some butterflies at the front of the stage to remind us that:
A butterfly lights beside us, like a sunbeam...
and for a brief moment its glory
and beauty belong to our world...
but then it flies on again, and although
we wish it could have stayed,
we are so thankful to have seen it at all.
Thank you, Father Greg, for having seen you and for all you have done for us!
Fr. Greg Schmidt - St. Julia Parish, Pastor - 251 Glenridge Avenue, St. Catharines