Pastor Crawford Loritts shared a “bitter sweet” announcement Sunday with his church family at Fellowship Bible Church in Roswell, Georgia, through the church’s Facebook page.
Originally, Loritts was going to make the announcement in April, but with COVID-19, he felt that he needed to pull back and shepherd through that season, which he noted is not yet over.
“These past 15 years have been just incredible for us,” Loritts said with his wife, Karen, by his side. “It’s been a joy how God has worked in our hearts and lives – how He has worked in our church. And what He has done in this ministry is absolutely wonderful.”
About three years ago, however, Loritts felt like God was beginning to give him a new assignment and that his assignment at Fellowship Bible was coming to an end. That feeling was further solidified after several discussions and prayers more than a year ago with the Chairman of Elders and with past Chairmen.
“I felt with great confidence from the Lord that now is the season to change,” Loritts said.
“I do sense that the Lord wants to raise up a younger leader – someone that can take us to the next level as a church, and take us to that next place where He wants us to be,” he added.
Loritts highlighted the fact that “every pastor is an interim pastor” and that God did an incredible work at the church long before he and his wife arrived.
“Every leader is an interim leader. Every servant of God is an interim servant of God. God’s purposes continue,” Loritts stated.
“When a man of God dies or leaves, nothing of God dies or leaves. God’s work continues. So, we’re thrilled about that,” he added.
Loritts said he presented a proposal to the elders for how the transition process will look like, and that proposal has been accepted. More details on the process will be forthcoming.
In the meantime, the church has made an arrangement with a search firm that is going to help find the next Senior Pastor, whom Loritts said he hopes will be on board by March.
Presently, Loritts plans to preach his last sermon at Fellowship Bible on Easter Sunday, April 4, 2021.
“We want to give time for the work to take place,” he said.
Regarding what’s next for Loritts, he said that there are four things that he feels that God wants him to pore his heart into, the last of which he described as “the centerpiece” and where the bulk of his time will be spent:
- Spending more time with family
- Speaking and preaching at events and conferences that represent causes and issues that are heavy on his heart
- Working on books and other writing projects
- Poring himself into encouraging the next generation
Adding to that, Karen Loritts emphasized that they are not retiring but they “are re-fired” up.
“I’m excited about the future at Fellowship Bible Church,” Loritts concluded before expressing his love, gratitude, and praise for the congregation and to God. “If He (God) calls somebody from someplace, He has raised up somebody else to take it to another place. So that’s the confidence that we have.”
Prior to serving as Senior Pastor of Fellowship Bible, Loritts served on the staff of Campus Crusade for Christ, served as an evangelist and church planter with the Urban Evangelistic Mission, founded Canton Bible Church in Mississippi, and co-founded Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas.
Presently, Loritts is a featured speaker at Promise Keepers men’s conferences; a featured speaker at Family Life’s marriage and parenting conferences; a visiting professor at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; and the Host of Living A Legacy, a daily radio program heard on 330 outlets by approximately 500,000 per week.