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Boxes: on The First Day

Dear Church,

Three days in and I think I’ll stick around 🙂

There is nothing like the “first day” — a new job, a new school year, and yes, a new church. No matter how old one gets, there are nerves, expectations, and hopes. Because the office is technically closed on Monday, I had a pretty soft landing on Day 1. Abby (Middle daughter) and I came down to experience some sunshine, get my email set up, and meet the internet people at the manse.

One of out of three isn’t too bad for the first day.
Email, check.

Folks have been incredibly welcoming and accommodating. I am sure there has been much restraint practiced by many of you, and while I fancy myself able to roll with most things that come my way, as I shift back into more intense congregational life, the care is much appreciated.

To give you a little insight into what I will be focusing on these first few weeks, here are three areas in which I’ll spend much of my energy:

  • Getting to know you and your rhythms: To get a full story of the church and it’s life, I have already scheduled over 20 visits and will be attending as many committees and working groups as possible. If you would like to shcedule a time to meet, use THIS LINK or call the church office: (650) 325-5659.
  • Getting settled with the staff: Part of my long title us “Head of Staff” so I will be spending a good amount of time learning, listening, and sharing. It will take a bit for us all to find our best working styles and calibrate our workflows, but, FPCPA has an excellent staff team and I am thrilled to begin working alongside them.
  • Getting in the worship flow: Every community plans, executes, and reflects on their worship experiences differently. Some patterns have been deeply thought through, while others have developed over time. Worship is my love, so diving into the weeds and looking at some idea for content and process at this stage is exciting.

Yes, there are many, many, many — Did I mention, MANY? — other areas that will be addressed and tended to, but I see ministry as a simultaneous sprint and marathon and I will do my best to know which race we are running and when.

A few things to pray for this day:

  • For the FPCPA staff. They have all been through a great deal over the past few years and continue to serve this church well. For healing, energy, and hope. In particular please lift up healing prayers for Andy, who had a fall this week and had to have a hip replacement and is home resting, and prayers of presence for Catherine and her family, after the death of her brother, Hal, this past weekend.
  • For the FPCPA ministries. For all that this community does within the immediate community and around the world to express justice, compassion, and love.
  • For the border: May compassion, justice, hospitality, and wisdom be extended to so many who are seeking a better and safer life here in the United States.

I think that’s it for this week. There will probably still be boxes next week, but for now, I’m settling in just fine.

See you Sunday

— Bruce