The retirement and return of a missionary form the field is usually a solemn and joyful event. Often the sending church will commemorate this milestone with a worship service designed to honor God for what he has accomplished through the missionary’s career. Such a service often includes corporate prayer, scripture reading and music (usually reminding people of God’s faithfulness and urging other to consider picking up the missionary mantle). The missionary usually speaks and describes the highlights of his/her career. A pastor or teacher may preach a sermon that may serve as a charge to the missionary to finish the rest of his/her life in new ways of faithfulness. The sermon may also encourage the congregation to continue in its care for the missionary, and to play its part in world missions.
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