It is good to be back after a time of study and vacation. I'm grateful that I had some time to relax because this Sunday there will be a whirlwind of activity on our campus. As most of you know by now, this Sunday at 4 pm the Presbytery will be installing me as the pastor of St. Andrew's. While the worship is hosted by St. Andrew's, it is actually a service of Santa Barbara Presbytery. As such, there will be people leading worship whom you may not know. For that reason, I want to give you a short biography for each of them:
Elder Lee Kirkpatrick: Lee is the moderator of the presbytery and an elder from First Presbyterian Church. I believe his mother attended here a long time ago.
Elder LuAnn Miller: LuAnn is an elder from Goleta Pres. I met her during the Presbytery's anti-racism event.
Elder Diane Kirkpatrick: Diane is a commissioned lay pastor at First Presbyterian Church. She is married to Lee Kirkpatrick and attended worship here last Sunday.
Rev. Tom Stephen: Tom is a pastor in our presbytery at Monte Vista Pres in Newbury Park, and a former moderator. He is also a super fun guy!
Rev. Mickey Fenn: Mickey is a long time friend of this congregation and was one of the first members of presbytery to reach out and welcome me.
Pastor Pablo Pineda: Pablo is the pastor of our "sister" church here on the campus, Llamada Final. He will not only lead in the service but some of his church members will attend as well.
Rev. Dr. Terry Palmer: Terry was the head of staff at the church where I served as associate in Gilbert, Arizona. He is a mentor of mine and a dear friend.
Rev. Dr. Brad Munroe: Brad is the pastor to the presbytery in DeCristo and Grand Canyon. In this sense, he was my pastor for years as well as a good friend and partner in many ongoing ministry projects.
Then, last but certainly not least….
Rev. Suzanne Malloy: Suzanne needs no introduction!
Elder Kirk Grier: Ditto on Kirk! I am very grateful to have Kirk and Suzanne as part of this service.
This is a lot of people and it is my hope that others from the presbytery will be with us as we formalize our mutual calling together. But, ultimately, this day is about our church. Therefore, the most important attendees will be you, the membership of St. Andrew's! I look forward to seeing you then.
Yours in Christ,
Cases are spiking in Santa Barbara County. There is no mask mandate as of yet, however, county officials are recommending that all people wear masks indoors. St. Andrew's Health Task Force has not met recently to respond to the changing situation, however, we will have masks available for the service and will continue to open doors and windows for ventilation. We encourage people to sit at a distance and will temporarily suspend the passing of the peace.
Receiving New Members!
This Sunday, during morning worship, we will formally receive three new members:
Please join us in welcoming them into our church!
Sunday School Teachers Needed
As you might have noticed, we now have children attending Sunday school and we are thrilled to have some little ones in our midst.
We are looking for volunteers to help us with them on Sunday mornings, on a one time or regular basis.
Focus: The “Great Commissions” in Matthew and Mark tells us to teach people they are beloved of God and then show them how to love as God’s beloved—not just for one another but for all creation!
Sunday Afternoon Installation Service for the Rev. Jennifer L. Fraser (4:00PM)
Text: John 20:19-22 and Acts 1:6-8
Title: The Breath of Jesus
Focus: The “Great Commissions” in John and Acts tells that loving all (and also the creation) is not an easy task but comes through our becoming wounded healers. Fear not, however, we have help from above!
You are invited to The Great Co-Missions on Sunday, August 1, at 9:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. (Pastor Jen’s installation service). The Rev. Dr. Brad Munroe will present on all four “Great Commission” passages to show how our Presbyterian views of mission calls us to move beyond mere talk and into action and beyond mere “doing for” and into “sharing life together.” The calling to love as the Beloved of God and become wounded healers is at the heart of the Church’s calling. It’s a tough job but we have help from above!
Dr. Munroe is Pastor to the Presbytery for the presbyteries of Grand Canyon and de Cristo. He lives with his wife, the Rev. Laura Munroe, in Tucson, Arizona. Dr. Munroe and Pastor Jen co-founded Grand Canyon Presbytery’s Reconciliation Team and co-authored the Leading Emotional Systems Training workshop. He is the author of Waging Peace, Praying Matthew and Praying Luke. His forthcoming devotional will be Praying Paul.
We will present a lecture by Jeorg Rieger, entitled “Christ and Post-Colonial Empire: Economic Exploitation or Economic Hope” from the series, “GOD & IMPERIAL POWER: Jesus & Economic Injustice.” Professor Joerg Rieger begins his fourth lecture by making this statement: “Colonial empire does not need to use fire and sword as it does during periods of conquest; post-colonial empire has learned that colonial empire is much too costly and unwieldy. It knows that a softer, subtler power can make much more rewarding transactions through attraction.”
He refers again to his third lecture where he described the 19th Century German version of “colonizing interest” that was so fixed in the German consciousness: “We will civilize the world; We will educate the world; We will reap the benefits.”
He then describes the life and work of the Englishman, Cecil Rhodes, founder of the former state of Rhodesia in South Africa (now Zambia and Zimbabwe) who said, “British Imperialism is about nothing more than philanthropy plus 5%," the sort of philanthropy that pays off.
Rieger says that perhaps the difference between modernity and post modernity is that back then (19th Century) it used to be 5%; now it’s more like 10% or 20% or more. He reminds us that we have learned from Adam Smith that colonialism proved to be much too expensive. In our own time, we no longer have colonies. Yet, he says, we are still benefiting from our relationships with the descendants of those colonials with whom our great-grandfathers dealt.
Rieger says that empire has gone underground. Now it is leaner and meaner and better at negotiating controls and power than it ever was before. Then Dr. Rieger makes what he recognizes could be a touchy example:
Consider the war in Iraq. “If you look at what happened in Iraq, you might expect to find the old “colonial paradigm” at work. But you don’t see it because it’s not there. We do not have an American governor in Iraq; the country governs itself. The oil in Iraq is still owned by the people of Iraq. However,” he says, “we realize that it is more lucrative under this arrangement if they keep owning and we keep managing.”
“Unfortunately,” Rieger says, “mainline theology is not addressing this.” He adds, “Oddly enough, mainline economics is not addressing it either. And you would have thought that economists would be more realistic than theologians.”