I have tried to be as transparent as possible concerning my plans for retirement. I have shared with numerous individuals and committees and I informed the 15 to 20 who attended our May church conference of my intent to give Poplar Springs some relief in July/August of 2022. I have always believed it is much better to leave one year too early than one year too late, and the last thing I want to do is stick around until some tough decisions would need to be made. In other words…I do not want there to be an asterisk and a footnote beside my picture on the Pastoral Line up in the vestibule that states… “Rev. Oliver enjoyed his time at Poplar Springs too much and turned this thriving congregation into a small gathering of friends.”
Kim retired at the end of the school year and I want to spend some time with her, and Oak Island is calling my name.
The personnel committee asked me what my goals were for the year, and I will sum up my objective for 2021/2022 with this statement: I want to finish strong! I would like to see us get back into full ministry mode during these final months and encourage our congregation to continue ministering in our community. I don’t want to just get busy and ask this congregation to follow suit. I would like for us to simply be the body of Christ in the world.
I want to finish strong because to coast for a year and a couple of months would be a misuse of that valued commodity…time. I want to prepare the church for the new person who will come here in the future and if I should be called by a potential pastor under consideration I will give an honest response…Poplar Springs is not just a church…it’s family and it is as good as it gets!
Pray that I will be able to finish strong and leave Poplar Springs with as little damage as possible.
I love y’all.