On Sabbath, January 26, 2019, Sligo Church marked Charles A. Tapp’s 60th birthday and his ten years as their Senior Pastor with a special service of appreciation and re-dedication. Through a video and a personal letter to Pastor and Sister Tapp, members spoke of the various ways in which they had been impacted by their ministry. They spoke of Pastor Tapp’s passion for the involvement of the church in the community, the quiet and imperceptible manner in which he had been able to retain the rich traditions of Sligo while transitioning the church to respond more effectively to the needs of worshipers and community members today. His transparency, love for children and young people, and his preaching were also highlighted as aspects of ministry that were admired by members. The fact that Pastor Tapp was able to lead Sligo Church for 10 years while caring for his wife, who became seriously ill just over ten years ago, was considered by many to be not only commendable but also exemplary.
The celebration of ten years of ministry was as much about Maureen as it was about Pastor Tapp. She has played a big role in the success and reach of her husband’s ministry at Sligo. Members unanimously agreed that Maureen made each of them feel special in her interactions with them and treated everyone as if they were the only person in the world. They expressed thanks for her encouraging and tender words, her smiles and her hugs. She was declared to be the epitome of a pastor’s wife.
The celebration continued into the evening with a surprise black tie event for the Tapps. Unknown to them, family members, family friends, Sligo Church ministry leaders and heads of sister institutions on campus were invited to celebrate with them. They thought that they were coming to Sligo for a photo shoot but were stunned when they arrived to find a hundred and twenty people ready to sit at a banquet with them. This was an evening of fun, rich music, warm applause, scrumptious food and witty speeches. The evening was crowned by an Excellence in Teaching Award given by Washington Adventist University to Pastor Tapp and an announcement by the president of the University, Dr. Weymouth Spence, that Pastor Tapp would be awarded an honorary doctoral degree at the Commencement Service on May 5, 2019.
Always level-headed and measured, Pastor Tapp reminded the church on Sabbath morning and the guests on Sabbath evening that all that he and his wife were able to accomplish at Sligo was not of their doing but of God’s enabling. They look forward to God using them in numerous ways during the years to come.