TULSA, Okla — A Tulsa legend is hanging up his hat after twenty-nine years of serving the metro.
Pastor Tom Harrison from Asbury Church is now retired, he delivered his last sermon Sunday morning to a chapel filled with thousands of people.
For twenty-nine years pastor Tom has been the Senior Pastor at Asbury Church, reaching thousands whether it be through the church or through his one-minute perceptions.
“It’s been great to be part of this community, I get to give back to the community I grew up in, it’s a wonderful place”, Harrison said.
While he may be passing the torch to a new pastor, he isn't venturing too far from the church.
“I’m gonna be retired and that’s the first time I’ve ever done that. However, we’ve also started a nonprofit ministry to help pastors. And so I’m excited about that opportunity but this is gonna be new for me and for the new pastor coming in, Andrew. And for this congregation, because they’ve had 29 years of me”, Harrison said.
Asbury Church had a busy Sunday morning with Harrison retiring and celebrating a ribbon cutting for the new ministry.
Harrison said this has been a dream of his since 2004 and to finally be able to unveil it as he passes the torch is a great sendoff.
“We’re opening this development center. There are 8 ministry areas, they’re all nonprofits so what we want to do is we want to bless this community in a way we’ve never been able to before”, Harrison said.
He said making the decision to retire was an easy one because of his predecessor Bill Mason.
“My predecessor was here 29 years and I felt I didn’t really want to eclipse him, I had so much respect for Bill. I thought he was here 29, that’s good for me. I’m 67 now, the new guy Andrew Forest is 42, 25 year difference. And it’s time for a guy that’s 42 to come in and reach his generation while holding onto mine”, Harrison said.
He's thankful for each step that led him to where he is now and where he's going.
“There is an acronym that I’ve used for a long time. It’s GO. Gratitude and optimism. I’m grateful for the past and I’m optimistic about the future”, Harrison said.
Pastor Tom said so many people came up to him Sunday morning and said how much they'll miss him and how big of an impact he made in so many lives.
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