Sunday, March 27, 2011

A Sad Goodbye for a Joyous Reason

Yesterday, a friend of mine paid tribute to our youth minister who is leaving.  I told her she has inspired me for my posting today.  Tonight, we will honor Kylan Mann and his wife Felecia for the service they have given to our church and we’ll say a very tearful goodbye.  

There are many things I admire about Kylan, and want to take today’s blog as the opportunity to share with anyone who reads this posting the highlights.

Kylan loves life.  It’s apparent in the enthusiasm he shows in everything he does.  He’s quick-witted and seems always in a good mood.  He isn’t afraid to approach any situation in an almost child-like manner.  Note the picture.

Kylan loves people.  He knows the names of the people at church and he walks through the halls greeting everyone.  Kylan traveled with our mission team last year to the Pine Ridge Reservation, and was a hit with the kids.  Kids know people’s true character and they could see what a great guy he is.

Kylan has loved our church.  When we lost our pastor last year, he stepped up to the plate and did a fantastic job.  It was really a joy to see him mature as a pastor.  None of us knew at the time that God was preparing Kylan for greater things, but now we can look back at the events that happened and say God was working to prepare Kylan for his next assignment.

Kylan loves his family.  He has a beautiful wife, who is one of the sweetest people I know.  It’s clear he loves her and their precious son, Elias.

Finally, and most importantly, Kylan loves the Lord.  It’s apparent in his dedication to his family, his church, and to his willingness to be used wherever and in whatever capacity God wants to use him.

In closing, I’ll share my funny Kylan story because anyone who knows him has at least one.  It occurred on our trip to Pine Ridge.  If you’ve been to Pine Ridge, you know there are few options for lodging on the reservation.  There’s a hotel in Kyle and there’s a hotel connected with the Prairie Wind Casino.  As we passed the casino, someone said we could have stayed there.  I said something to the effect, “I’m sure our church would like to know we’d stayed at the casino.”  Kylan, ever ready with an answer in his most serious face piped up, “Jesus would be there.”  It cracked us up because the line just instantly popped into his mind.  And then, of course, we laughed because he was right.  Jesus would have been there.

He’s a jewel, and we’ll miss him, Felecia, and Elias. 

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