Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | October 6, 2012

Farewell, Pastor Alex

Dear Pastor,

In just a few hours, you will preach your final sermon at Kingsland and I will be on my way to El Salvador. I regret that I will not be present for your final day in the pulpit but know that you understand. My heart and mind have wrestled with every emotion since you announced that you will return to North Carolina to serve as Senior Pastor of Carmel Baptist Church. I know that you have earnestly sought God’s direction in this matter and that you feel deeply convicted that you must go where He has called. I understand and respect your decision even though it has not been an easy one for me to accept. I guess I thought that when I am 100 and you are 90 I would be pushing your wheel chair at the old pastors’ home (or you would be pushing my wheel chair).

I will never be able to thank you enough for having confidence in me to serve as Kingsland’s first missions pastor. From my first day at Kingsland to today, you have faithfully encouraged me and supported our various missions initiatives from our own community to the ends of the earth. You have given me the latitude to dream and to lead our church family to engage in so many time zones that we can safely say that the sun does not set on our work among the nations. And, when you cast the vision that we should spend our debt free dollars on building the kingdom rather than building buildings I told you then that you had cast a vision worth living and dying for. I still feel that way. Thanks for having the courage to cast such a bold and inspiring vision.

I am thankful for every adventure we shared together among the nations — from almost getting arrested in South Asia and having our Bibles confiscated to trekking through the bush in Tanzania. I will treasure each of our adventures for a lifetime. And now, you are embarking on another great adventure. Please know that I will pray for you, for Christy of the Nile (that’s a story from yet another adventure), and for your family. You are a good and godly man. It has been an honor for me to call you my Pastor and my friend. I love you. I will miss you. And I promise to pray for you as you go beyond in North Carolina.

Respectfully and With Deep Gratitude,
Omar~

Visiting a poor family. | 2005 | Darkhan, Mongolia

With Jerry Smith, baptizing a new Mongol believer. | 2005 | Darkhan, Mongolia

At the Great Wall of China. | 2005 | Outside of Beijing, China

On St. Martin’s Island | 2007 | Bangladesh

On the beach at St. Martin’s Island | 2007 | Bangladesh

St. Martin’s Island | 2007 | Bangladesh

First Annual Caring for Katy church-wide service initiative. | 2008 | Katy, Texas

With village children. | 2008 | Orissa, India

Post persecution village celebration. | 2008 | Orissa, India

Praying after worship service. | 2008 | Orissa, India

Tired, dirty, and hungry. | 2008 | Tanzania

A father and son adventure. | 2008 | Tanzania

A gift from our team. | 2008 | Tanzania

Teaching on the sanctity of human life. | 2008 | Kampala, Uganda

With Veronica, Director of The Comforter’s Center | 2008 | Kampala, Uganda

Dedication of The Comforter’s Center | 2008 | Kampala, Uganda

At the entrance to Angkor Wat. | 2010 | Siem Reap, Cambodia

At Ta Prohm Temple, Angkor complex. | 2010 | Siem Reap, Cambodia

Boys Home Dedication plaque. | 2011 | Orissa, India


Responses

  1. Very, very well said Omar! Thank you for putting into words what is so hard for many of us to say in person. Be careful… and dangerous on your trip to bring Living Water to the people of El Salvador. Love, Jeff

    • Thanks, Jeff. Looking forward to a great trip to El Salvador.

  2. Pastor O –
    Once again your words hit the mark! We, as a church, have been blessed these past 10 years and for the 19 total. He is an amazing man of God and I too am proud to call him not only Pastor but friend.

    • Absolutely, Jim. We have indeed been blessed under Alex’s leadership and time at Kingsland.

  3. Oh wow 😦 it is so hard to say goodbye. Omar of the world, you have taught us so very much. Your impact is forever on our lives. We love your family with a tremendous love. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You must Go Beyond to North Carolina sometime.

    • Christy of the Nile, I look forward to going beyond in North Carolina. Love you all. Keep a close eye on “Al” 😉

      • I will pray that God only allows him to go beyond for a visit to NC –
        would be so hard for both of you to go beyond Katy to that distant land of NC

      • Thanks, Linda. No worries. I still pray for many more fruitful years at Kingsland.

  4. Such beautiful adventures you and Pastor Alex have been on together thus far. Thank you for sharing those pictures! I especially love the one of Pastor walking behind the Muslim man in white from Bangladesh… such a beautiful picture! Thank you, brother. You are missed! Praying for you as you travel to El Salvador. I am anxiously waiting for your day of preaching on the 14th. 🙂

    • Great memories are indeed a treasure. So glad to have so many great memories of serving the nations with Pastor Alex. Thanks for praying for our El Salvador trip.

  5. My heart will miss the Kennedy’ s and I will pray for them and my Husband has already told me we can’t move with them to North Carolina although I have already been trying to find out if his sermons will be video.

    • The great thing about our world is that we can stay connected through the internet and social media. Hopefully Pastor Alex’s sermons will be available online.

  6. Thank you for sharing your heart and for sharing these special photos.

    • This is one blog I never thought I would have to write. Will miss Alex. Love these photos.

  7. I love the photos, too, Omar–thanks for sharing them. May God bless you on this trip and keep you safe.

    • Thanks, Johnna. And thanks also for your prayers as we travel to El Salvador to drill another water well with Living Water, Intl.

  8. Dear Pastor Omar, By hearing all good words about Pastor Alex from your Team members, I had a dream to see this man of God. I had many questions to ask (about mission,,church leadership). I thought one day He must come to my slum Village. Now I am very sorry that I may not get a chance to see this wonderful man of God. Pray God may use him like Moses.

    • Dear Rudra, I am sorry you did not have an opportunity to meet Pastor Alex. Perhaps one day his journeys will take him to Kolkata and the opportunity for you to meet. He has been a big supporter of our work in Kolkata and at your school.

  9. Hello Brother Omar! That was very heart’felt’. I pray that you all will be comforted by the precious Comforter at this moment in time & beyond. We will keep you all in our prayers. Have a wonderful trip! Be Blessed

    • Thanks, John. Thanks also for your prayers for me and our team as we venture to El Salvador to drill another water well with our friends at Living Water International.

  10. Your words are spot on and the pictures bring tears to my eyes. Immeasureably blessed over the years by you and Alex and the rest of the staff and church family at Kingsland. Our prayers follow wherever you all go in obedience to our Heavenly Father.

    • Thanks for your kind words and for your prayers, Carol.

  11. Omar, just heard the news about Alex. Heather and I have been keeping up with you. We love you guys and continue to pray for God’s peace and leading of Kingsland, Pastor Alex and for you. You have an awesome ministry that I’ve never seen elsewhere. I’m constantly amazed of how God uses you to touch lives around the world. Keep going my brother – we love you.

    Branon and Heather Dempsey

    • Thanks for your kind and encouraging words, Branon and Heather. Thanks also for your prayers and your friendship. I believe that God has good things ahead for Kingsland and for Pastor Alex as he starts his new work in North Carolina. It will be exciting to see those things unfold day by day.


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