Press-Republican

Faith & Spirituality

June 27, 2014

Essex pastor puts the time in part-time

ESSEX — The Rev. John Hunn doesn’t consider retirement an option.

After 60 years as a minister, the 85-year-old Hunn continues to spread God’s word at the Essex Community United Methodist Church.

At 10:15 a.m. Sunday, the church will be celebrating the 60th anniversary of the ordination of their beloved pastor, who has served there for 14 years.

For Hunn, the thought of having 60 years of preaching behind him hasn’t really crossed his mind.

“I haven’t thought a whole lot about it,” Hunn said. “I just feel that retirement is really not something (you do) when you’re called to the ministry. It’s not something that’s an option really.”

Despite retiring in 1994 at age 65, after previously serving in churches throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Connecticut, Hunn’s passion was too strong to stay away from ministry for long.

Once retired, Hunn and his wife, Margaret, or “Peggy” as he calls her, moved to their summer camp in Willsboro. The camp, which they had winterized, is now the residence they’ve called home for the past 20 years.

With he and his wife settled, the desire to spread God’s word came back.

“After I was here for less than a year, I really realized how much I missed being a pastor of a church,” Hunn said. “So, I accepted an invitation to be the part-time pastor at the Rouses Point Presbyterian Church for a year, and I stayed there for four years.”

Following his time in Rouses Point, Hunn received another invitation to become a part-time pastor in 2000. This time, it was an invitation from a Methodist church in Essex, N.Y.

Fast-forward 14 years and Hunn is still at that church.

Despite still holding the title of “part-time” pastor, he is the only pastor the church has.

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