Welcome by Pastor John Neufeld
You may be seated. I want to greet you with words that come from John 5:25. Which simply says: “Truly, truly I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here when the dead will hear the voice of the son of God. And those who hear will live”. Well, I want to welcome you to this memorial service for Carlin Eugene Weinhauer. Or as most of us simply knew him: Pastor Carlin. A memorial service is exactly that, it is a service that is a time simply to remember. And I remember Pastor Carlin as one of the most focused men that I have ever met.
When I was asked, as I sometimes was, to describe him, I would say “Well actually, he is remarkably easy to understand. He is just about a very few things. He’s a man of prayer and a man of the Word. He is a man who intensely loves his wife and his family. He’s a man who cares about the preaching of the gospel, both at home and in missions around the world. And he is a man who is deeply concerned for the spiritual well-being of others. That’s pretty well all there is to him and once you know that, you know Carlin Weinhauer. Of course, I know there’s more, but here is a man who knew why he lived, and here’s a man who knew what God had called him to do. Here’s a life, not a perfect life, but a life that was sold upon the altar of Jesus Christ.
I first got to know Pastor Carlin in 1986 and I really got to know him well in 1999, when I came to work with him to transition the leadership here at Willingdon Church. And here’s what I learned about him: Everything that he appeared to be was exactly who he was. In the years that we served together there was never a harsh word that was spoken between us, but there were many words between us, words that encouraged each other to be faithful to Jesus and the calling that we had. I can still see him now and if there is a memory of him that I will never forget, it’s the memory of him on his knees, always knowing that his first business was with God, who had both created him and redeemed him.
So we come together to remember this remarkable man, and as we do, it’s really okay for us to weep, for in weeping we demonstrate that his death is indeed a loss. It’s okay to laugh and smile and to enjoy, for his life is really not over, because he now is only beginning to live. It’s okay to express to Marcia and to the family our love for him, and our love for them, and we want to do that today. We want to wish them our condolences and we want to continue to assure them of our prayers. But most of all, and Pastor Carlin would want this to be known most of all, as we remember we are really remembering Pastor Carlin’s remarkable Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, who gave his life to ransom Carlin Eugene Weinhauer from his sin, from the futility of a life lived without purpose, from Satan’s bondage, and from eternal death. It is Jesus Christ that we remember most of all, because it is He who has transformed this man to make him what he was, and what he now is as he stands before Him.
Well, I want to again say to every one of you, it is a delight to have you here, and I know that your presence will be a great comfort to the family. As we go through this memorial service today, I’m not going to be announcing every item in advance. You have a bulletin, and everyone that’s coming up will just come up in their time, and when they come up just simply notice if you’re next. Come and stay within the required limits of time, and we’ll try to do that. If that happens it will be a miracle that has happened, and so we’re going to try to do that. However… let me, however, lead you in opening prayer.
Heavenly Father, we’ve come to gather together and we’ve come to remember, O Lord, that You are a promise keeping God. We remember, Lord, that when Your spirit is given, when Your seed is placed inside any man or woman, that transforming seed, that You make men and woman to be like Christ. And for myself, Heavenly Father, as I think about the relationship that I enjoyed with my sweet brother, I thank you, Heavenly Father, the way in which you had made him like Christ. In fact, Lord, I thank you that he was an example for me of a man who lived for Christ. I pray for Marcia, I pray for the family, I pray much grace upon them, O Lord God. I pray also, Heavenly Father, for all who knew him well, and those who knew him slightly. And I pray, Heavenly Father, that a life well lived, would also be a life that would speak to us. Heavenly Father, now come, we ask in the name of Christ, our risen Lord. Come and minister to us through this memorial service. Receive glory for what You have done in our brother, in Christ’s name, Amen.