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Retirement from Funkstown church has Layman contemplating his future

June 10, 2008|By MARLO BARNHART

FUNKSTOWN - Two days after he retired as pastor of St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Funkstown, the Rev. Darrell Layman became a grandfather again.

"My last day as pastor was April 1 and our granddaughter was born on April 3," Layman said.

Part of his retirement plans will be to spend some time with that child and a 2-year-old grandchild in Southern Maryland. But beyond that, Layman is still studying his options.

In recent years, Layman and his wife, Mary, have gone on mission trips to such far-flung places as Finland and Estonia.

And he hasn't ruled out more trips.

"I am still involved with global missions through our synod," Layman said.

The opportunity to visit Tanzania - without Mary - came to Layman in 2003 in his role as chairman of global missions for the Delaware/Maryland Synod.

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"Our goal is to connect congregations here and across the globe," Layman said in an interview five years ago. The synod was invited to send a representative to Tanzania, but there was no money available in his committee.

When Layman was guest of honor at a celebration of his 25th year of ordination in 2003, a family member suggested that he use the cash gift he received for the trip.

And he did.

He describes the trips as exchanges between congregations. In 2006, some foreign mission travelers came to the U.S. In the fall of this year, there will be mission trips to those countries again.

"My wife can't go in the fall because of her work in the Washington County schools," Layman said.

But new folks will probably be going and that is how it should be, Layman said.

"It has developed into a nice relationship and friendships have resulted," he said.

A native of Allegany County, Md., Layman served churches in the Sharpsburg area for 10 years and then another 10 years in Carroll County, Md.

He was at St. Paul's for the past 10 1/2 years.

Still trying to find out what retirement is all about, Layman said he and his wife plan to stay in Washington County, which puts them somewhere in the middle between hometown, their son in Southern Maryland and a daughter who lives in the Washington, D.C., area.

As for St. Paul's, a search committee has been formed and probably will pursue a new pastor soon, Layman said. In the meantime, there will be guest pastors in the pulpit.

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