SILVER SPRING, MD (Saturday, June 23, 20120) - Father Robert Keffer, the pastor of the Catholic community at Riderwood retirement community ever since it opened more than a decade ago, today was honored by hundreds of his parishioners at a retirement ceremony held for him at the Silver Spring, MD, campus..
Father Keffer, who will also retire this summer as pastor or Resurrection Catholic parish in Burtonsville, MD, held Mass in nearly all buildings at the 120-acre Riderwood campus during its years of expansion, including the café (with ice-maker sound effects).
He also held Mass in Riderwood music rooms and in the Performance Hall. He presided over the first worship service in the Riderwood Chapel on Palm Sunday 2004.
Father Keffer is admired and respected by residents and staff, who appreciate his ready smile and calming presence.
His commitment to Riderwood and its Renaissance Gardens extended care neighborhood has been a model for ministry in a corporate world. He has laid a foundation to which others can look and learn.
Riderwood residents read the following scripture (Father Keffer's favorite) in his honor at the retirement ceremony:
"For this reason, I remind you to stir into flame the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of Strength and Love and Wisdom. So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord, but bear your share of hardship for the Gospel with the strength that comes from God."
- 2 Timothy 1, 6-8