A BISHOP who left his role as a marketing director to be the first pastor at Solihull Renewal Christian Centre has retired after 47 years.
The Right Reverend Dr David Carr has stepped down as senior pastor at the Lode Lane church and a service held in his honour was attended by more than 1,000 people.
Guests included the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, The Reverend John Glass, former Chair of the Evangelical Alliance, and The Mayor of Solihull, Councillor Flo Nash.
Bishop David, who is a chaplain to several hospitals in the region and will take on the new role of head of chaplaincy for Renewal, said: “There comes a time when the natural age diminishes the energy you need to see a church of this size progress, so you need to know when to hand over.
“I am confident that the spirit and vision are there, and I believe I have found a man of similar heart that I will be thrilled to serve under.”
In 1972 he left his job as a as marketing director for the Professional Football Association in PFA Financial Services to lead the church that has grown to more than 1,600 people.
He will be succeeded by The Reverend Jonny Lee, the former senior pastor of Renewal at a church in Birmingham.
The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, said: “Our relationship, that reaches across different strands of the Christian church, was born out of a deep friendship formed during my time as Bishop for Birmingham; we had an instant affinity and respect for each other.
“It is a pleasure to be a part of an Honour Service to recognise David’s outstanding service over the past 47 years.”
The Mayor of Solihull said: “At a time when I needed someone to talk to you were there.
“We lost our son. I appreciated the care and concern you showed us, and so do other people because I know you have done this for special people, friends and families that you’ve had.
“It’s been a privilege for me and Alan to be classed as a friend for 15 years.
“I can’t say to you how much Solihull appreciates all the work that you put into the community and all the work that you do outside by travelling abroad.”