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Being a Pastor: My First Month

I can’t believe how people take such chances with me. I wonder if they know what they’re doing. Still, I thank God for all the people that have taken chances with me, believing in me, and seeing things that I don’t see. Thanks y’all.

      So, my situation is a little unique. I’m a young pastor in a denomination with some pretty stringent hoops to jump through to obtain that victorious stole of ordination. I haven’t completed all the requirements, but some people took a chance on me and appointed me to pastor a church as a Local Licensed Pastor (in the UMC, that means I can do all the pastory stuff within the ministry of one specific local church). Also, in the UMC, pastors are appointed to churches by an overseer of pastors, a Bishop, with help from District Superintendents. So, this church didn’t ask for me… they got me. There’s pros and cons, but in any case, I think these good people were surprised (to say the least) that they would be receiving a 28 yr old local licensed pastor, instead of whatever comes into your mind when you think of “pastor.” I know that the change has been difficult for many of them, but I have been absolutely blown away by their love, hospitality, and passion to “get to work” as we seek God’s will for our church and our city. Thanks y’all.

photo-7In My First Month

     Our first Sunday was tremendous. I remember talking to someone on the phone before I arrived. The plan was to have only one service because it was the weekend after the 4th of July and we anticipated many families being gone for the weekend. I said, “Are you sure?” Someone said, “We’ll have the room. It would be a miracle if we packed the place out.” Miracle? No problem. We packed the place out. The service was great before it began. I’m sure people were just curious about the new pastor, but it still felt good. I moved a few things in the order of worship, no one seemed bothered by it. Easy peasy.

     The biggest change that I’ve done so far, I haven’t done well. I always knew I would be encouraging the congregation to eventually receive communion weekly in the services. The read more »

Cathedral of the Rockies Church Leadership United Methodists

Eric Geiger and Sue Nilson Kibbey: Awesome Church Leaders I Get to Hang Out With This Week

This week is our United Methodist Oregon-Idaho Leadership Institute. Churches from all over our conference will come together, here at The Cathedral of the Rockies, to worship, grow, plan, and dream for the future of our churches, our denomination, and our world. I am stoked for this week!

A huge reason that I’m so excited is that we get to host and I get to spend some time with our key-note speakers: Eric Geiger and Sue Nilson Kibbey.

Eric Geiger is best known for co-authoring the book Simple Church, named the 2007 Christianity Today Book Award winner in the Church/Pastoral Leadership category and was recognized by Outreach Magazine as the Best Outreach Leadership Training Resource of 2007.

Sue Nilson Kibbey is the Director of Connectional and Missional Church Initiatives for the United Methodist West Ohio Conference centered in Columbus, Ohio.  Sue is the former Executive Pastor at Ginghamsburg United Methodist Church, one of the most vital congregations in our little tribe, leading the way in social justice projects, small groups, passionate worship, and mission.  Sue is also the author of Ultimately Responsible: When You’re In Charge of Igniting the Ministry.

I’m pumped to spend some time with these fantastic church leaders, worship with them, and hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches through them! It’s going to be an exciting time. I’ll keep you posted.

If you are in the Treasure Valley this week, and are able to make it to any of the sessions, I highly recommend you come by (even if you aren’t Methodist). Go here for more info on the Leadership Institute.

Also, on Friday I will be leading one of the workshops on Youth Ministry. A little plug.

peace to your soul!†