March 23, 2014

Pastoral Letter
 
“But I just want to row a boat.” And yet, belonging to an association of boat rowing 
enthusiasts, hosting “regattas,” maintaining a “boat-house” and a multitude of boats, 
requires hours of work – either paid or volunteered. So, the privilege of rowing a boat 
around the Los Alamitos harbor entails contributing 12 volunteer hours (over the 
course of a year). Now, that honestly doesn’t sound very hard (except for being a 
pastor, when the primary events at which one can volunteer are held on Sunday 
Mornings – oops.) 
 
Our church “association” of disciples also thrives on the gracious service of our 
family in faith: 
 
- Our boat house of faith requires hours of attention from handy men and women. 
- Our worship life is blessed by hours of rehearsing choirs, coffee preparers, 
welcoming greeters, light bearing acolytes, donut merchants, and worship-guide 
printing and folding saints. 
- Our capacity for “rowing” in Christ is nurtured by generous teachers, assistants, 
and mentors. 
- Our mission to transform the world is realized through innumerable hours of 
mentoring, feeding, clothing, affirming conversation, letter writing, and even 
organizing. 
 
Ministry and Service are the norm of our life together. They create opportunities to 
foster community, extend the welcome of Christ, and deepen our roots in the Spirit, 
which provide the space for healing and renewal of our neighborhood. You are the 
ministers of the church. 
 
Opportunities to serve unfold all year long. And there are seasons when we make 
special invitations and undergo transitions in our administrative leadership. In the 
next few weeks, we will be inviting the church family to consider how the Spirit may 
be nudging you to invest in transforming service. We will be circulating a 
“Service/Ministry Opportunity Form” which lists a variety of channels for using your 
gifts and skills. Please take some time to prayerfully consider how you will respond 
or where you feel called. 
 
Twelve hours (or one hundred hours) may seem like an imposition. But then I am 
reminded that this investment opens up the gift of life on the water, or the joy of life 
in the company of one who walks on water. What a privilege to labor with such a 
companion. 

Pastor Mark