Sample Letter Announcing Resignation or Retirement
This letter is to inform each of you that last evening, I submitted my resignation and announced my
retirement as the Senior Minister of First Christian Church, effective ___________________.
On _________________________, I will have served as your minister for _______________ years. In
those ____________ years we have accomplished much together.
List major accomplishments of the congregation during the minister’s tenure.
On a personal note, I would like to thank the congregation for
Note areas in which the congregation cared for the minister (and family), provided opportunities
for personal/vocational growth, empowered the minister to serve the church regionally,
nationally or ecumenically; to volunteer for causes such as Boy or Girl Scouts, Habitat for
Humanity, CROP, etc.
In the next ______ months that lie before us, I am not planning to sit idle. There are still a few things I
would like us to accomplish together. However, these next months will go very quickly. In that time, I
ask for your prayers as I begin a new phase in my life.
Please read the enclosed copy of the Ministerial Code of Ethics. It is my intention to support my
successor. When my time comes to bid you farewell, I ask that you refrain from asking me to do
anything that would break the ethical relationship by which I have attempted to guide my life, as your
minister and in my relationships with other ministers.
Our relationship after _________________ will be different. I will no longer be your minister but I will
become your friend. As I have told others in places where I have served previously, I can no longer
officiate at your weddings, funerals, baptisms, etc. But I can be your guest; I can be a pall-bearer; I can
be your friend.
(something similar to the following paragraph may be used if the minister will continue living
in the same community and has sought the wisdom of their regional minister on such matters.)
(Name of partner/spouse/family member)__________________ and I are planning to continue living in
__________________. We are remaining here in order to be close to our family. Following a time of
absence in order to give my successor time to become established, it is my hope that I will become an
active member of First Christian Church. I am going to follow the Ministerial Code of Ethics and work
to ensure the success of my successor. Please help me fulfill that promise.
It has been a joy to serve as your pastor these past ________years.
In God’s grace,
__________________________ (minister’s name)