The retirement celebration last Friday evening was perfect. Susan and I and our family are deeply grateful. It was a party!
We want to thank Joy Brandon, who chaired the committee (AKA La Reine de Soiree), for her tireless work in creating the perfect evening for more than 400 people to have a whole lot of fun. She didn’t work alone. She had a hard-working committee: Carolyn Stephens, Carma Anderson, Barbara and Wes Alderete, Jennifer Bond, James Patterson, and Carol Harrell. And others worked hard to make it all happen: Jeanne Cochrane, Julie Compton, Nancy Fisher, Kirk Millican, Cindy Moon, Andrea Rankin, Charme Robarts, Amanda Tonroy, Conner Tonroy, Marsha Waugh, Austin Patton, Thomas Williams, Clint Church, Elaine Johnson, Rhonda Gaber, and Donna Smith.
I’m grateful for all those who presented during the evening. What kind words! My long-time friend, going all the way back to seminary days, Dr. Sid Hall; Dr. Mike Marshall, my colleague and a long-time friend going even further back to Centenary College days; Sheri Dewar, life-long member of First Church; Sav Kennedy, a youth member of our church, graduating this year; our wonderful daughters Sarah Pepper, Katie Segreti, and Emily Wahler; my wife, best friend, and partner in ministry, Susan; and our five perfect grandchildren: Alice, Andrew, Luca, Milo, and Weston. You all blessed me beyond words!
The music was fantastic! Scott Ayers’ beautiful piano artistry enhanced our reception time before dinner. I am so grateful to the United Methodist Women of First Church for providing the band. Trey and the Tritones were magnificent, and we had a blast dancing to their wide variety of music.
Thank you to the members of our youngest Sunday School classes for sharing their artistry with us. They provided the flowerpot fingerprints as part of the decorations on the tables.
Thank you, thank you, thank you! I will never forget that special night. It could not have been better. Several people asked me if I felt the love. I certainly did!
It has been such a blessing to serve this great church for these past nineteen years. Friday evening wasn’t the first time Susan and I and our family have felt your love. You have expressed it over and over again to us, to one another, and to countless others outside of our church. You truly exemplify what it means to go out to be God’s people in the world.
Grace and Peace,
Dr. Tim Bruster