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Posts by Curtis Bronzan

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Mine!

Every year at this time, the Weekly is filled to the brim with various opportunities in the life of our church. By my count, there are 23 opportunities this week alone! A recent member of the Good Shepherd family recently e-mailed me to share of the fun...

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Start With Why

Next Saturday, August 25th, our elders are meeting for a bi-annual retreat day. We do so every January and August, and they have become two of my absolute favorite days of the entire year, not only because we have a lot of fun together, but also because I learn so much from each one of the leaders on the team....

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A Day at CBS

Last week we welcomed over 220 kids for VBS. This week, our Middle and High School students are on Catalina at Campus by the Sea for a week of summer camp. Different settings, to be sure, but the same goal....

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VBS Week

VBS week is like no other week on campus. It’s not even close. All week, over 220 Pre-K through 5th graders have been making crafts, engaging in science experiments, playing games, watching skits and singing. And singing. Then, a little more singing...

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Rivalries

The Red Sox and the Yankees. Tom and Jerry. UCLA and USC. Batman and the Joker. Coke and Pepsi. The Hatfields and the McCoys. Classic rivalries are all around us. Here's one you may have never thought of: 9am Classic and 10:45am Modern...

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Resident Aliens

Stanley Hauerwas and Will Willamon’s book Resident Aliens opens with these words: Sometime between 1960 and 1980, an old, inadequately conceived world ended, and a fresh, new world began. We do not mean to be overly dramatic....

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Counter Culture

In 1926, the United States Supreme Court made a well-intentioned ruling that affects our everyday lives - perhaps for the worst. The justices ruled that the town of Euclid, Ohio could bar the development of land which had been slated for an industrial-use...

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Even Better Than Bounce Houses!?

My family and I live on a quaint little street near El Dorado park. It’s common on weekends to drive by epic birthday parties and large family reunions sprawled out in the vast open space of the historic park. My children, 4 and 7, always feel left out of playing on the...

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The Same Sermon

The story has been told of a pastor who began his ministry at a new church with a brilliant sermon. Everyone loved it. The next week, however, he preached the same sermon. The exact same sermon. Same text, same illustrations, same application....

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"Big Church"

My brother and I called it “Big Church.” And it happened every Sunday. Really. Every Sunday! Starting in the 2nd grade! We went to Sunday School, then Big Church. Luckily, most Sundays we’d get a donut in between. But even after a donut - or maybe especially...

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Stay Forth!

Our current sermon series is inspired by the prayer Jesus taught us, a prayer we pray together every week: “Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed by Thy name. Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”...

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Next Door As It Is In Heaven

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter...

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Knocking On Heaven's Door

The story has been told of a Christian college here in Southern California that once sent its students door to door to talk with people about spiritual issues. Can you imagine how difficult that would be!? I hope that these students, by merely attempting...

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Skipping Through Holy Week?

In his award winning book The Jesus I Never Knew, Philip Yancey describes holy week traditions (or lack thereof) in his childhood church community. He explains that they never held a Good Friday service. Nor one for Maundy Thursday. No, they “skipped past...

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The "Good Life"

Southern California is one of the most beautiful, idyllic places in the world. Where we call home is sought after by people around our country - even world! We may forget that from time to time, or even take it for granted, but it’s true. Case in point...

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A Little Fixer Upper

I've mentioned in sermons that my family and I live in a little fixer upper just across Katella/Willow into Long Beach, a few streets over from El Dorado Park. We love our neighborhood primarily because we have great neighbors, some of whom we get to worship...

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An Amazing Thing Happened on the Way to Jerusalem

An amazing thing happened on the way to Jerusalem. The first half of our gospel accounts depict Jesus ministering in and around Galilee. He calls disciples, tells parables, and performs healings on behalf of fascinated crowds. But about halfway through the...

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A Motor Car for the Multitude

Somewhere around 90% of American households own a car, but that wasn't always the case. A hundred years ago, the automobile was not accessible for most of the population. Then, along came Henry Ford. He once quipped that if he gave people what...

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Our "Camp David"

It’s officially known as Naval Support Facility Thurmont, but it’s usually just referred to as Camp David. Built from 1935-1938 in Catoctin Mountain Park near Thurmont, Maryland, Camp David has hosted dignitaries and politicians from all over the world....

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Who Is This Man?

Sunday we began a new series we’re calling Who Is This Man? Despite the new series title, we’re continuing in the Gospel of Luke, which we began for Advent in December and will continue until Easter in April! “Who is this man?” It’s a question that...

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The Kids Table

It was one of those visuals that sticks with you, simple though it was. You know the kind: They imprint themselves deeply in your brain’s hippocampus and can’t be forgotten (no matter how hard you try!). In reality it was just two tables on a stage....

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Hidden Christmas

In his book Hidden Christmas, Tim Keller writes that every December there are two very different celebrations going on - each observed by millions of people at the same time. Around the world there are those of us who see in Christmas an opportunity to...

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Peace Be With You!

One of my favorite parts of preaching is words. Which isn’t all that surprising. I use a couple thousand of them in each sermon (though sometimes one or two of them are repeats). It’s not the amount of words I like (surprise though it may be)...

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Four Little Words

This fall we engaged the call to create Christian community in our series One Another. Our bulletin cover and PowerPoint background was a serene forest of trees, deep in some secluded forest. The inspiration for that image came from aspen trees,...

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We Should Build a Confession Booth

Our goal this year at Good Shepherd is to go deeper into community so that we can go further out in faith. If you haven't heard about that, learn more here. The desire to go deeper into community has prompted us to explore the "one anothers" found...

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Other One Anothers

By now you’ve undoubtedly heard me write or talk about our one year goal at Good Shepherd: "Deeper Into Community, Further Out in Faith." We want every member of our church community to be connected not only in a Sunday morning worship...

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"Change the World"

The phrase "change the world" is a common one in our day. In one way or another, it seems everyone wants to do so. Type that phrase into Google and you’ll get 206 million results in a search that takes less than a second. Included are more than 50 million...

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Cast Upon a Horrible, Desolate Island

I am cast upon a horrible, desolate island, void of all hope of recovery. I am singled out and separated, as it were, from all the world, to be miserable. I am divided from mankind – a solitaire; one banished from human society… I have no soul to speak to or relieve me....

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Family Systems

On Sunday we conclude our series All In, in which we’re engaging our mission statement: Inviting all people to grow into a Christ-centered life in God’s family. We’ve discussed “inviting all people” and “growing into a Christ-centered life.” On Sunday, we will think...

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Words Create Worlds

It’s been said that “words create worlds.” And it’s difficult to argue with that statement. Think, for instance, of the outset of the Scriptures, where God declares “Let there be light.” And, sure enough, there’s light! The next day God creates the sky. The next day...

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Deeper Into Community, Further Out in Faith

Erwin Rommel was a genius, no doubt about it. The problem was that he put his efforts to use working for the Nazi regime. And yet, despite his evil intent, we can learn something from Rommel to be put to use for God’s mission in the world. And in our church....

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Reflections on Charlottesville

The events that took place last weekend in Charlottesville have deeply troubled me to the core. But now, a week later, it is not only the events themselves, but the response - across our country - which reveals how deeply fallen and divided America is. I have sought...

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The Shrewd Manager?

This summer we've been engaging the parables in our series The Stories Jesus Told. You may recall how, a couple months ago, I invited anyone in our community to “tell us what to preach on.” Any story Jesus tells, we'll preach on it. Your favorite parable?...

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One Body, Many Parts

One of the greatest joys of serving as your pastor is hearing how God has revealed Himself in your lives. Just this Thursday, I met with a Covenant Partner of our congregation to whom God revealed himself in unmistakable ways – clarifying his calling...

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The Parable of the Sower

The above fresco, titled The Parable of the Sower, is the centerpiece of the chapel at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina. Painted by artist Gerald Steinmeyer, the work measures 17x20 feet, towering over gathered worshippers...

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Praise the Lord!

I'm not sure God intended us to have favorite passages in the Bible, but, I suppose it's only human to be drawn to certain parts of God's Word that speak to us in a special way. One of my "favorites" (if that's okay!?), is Psalm 150:...

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If We Stop to Think About it for Two Minutes...

After two weeks in Charlotte, North Carolina, at a second-year residency for my Doctorate in Ministry, it is good to be back! And no, I don't miss the humidity! I am grateful for how Josh and Paul kicked off our summer series, The Stories Jesus Told....

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5 Important Shifts Start with 1

At Tuesday evening’s Session and Staff Meeting, we reviewed a document written by ECO’s Synod Executive, Rev. Dr. Dana Allin, entitled Five Important Shifts for Our Future Development. The first shift is From ‘Clergy-Centered’ to an ‘Unleashed Laity.’...

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They Will Know Us By Our... Happiness!?

Sunday we continue our series They Will Know Us By Our Fruit, inspired by Jesus’ teaching in Luke 6: No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from...

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From Your Pastor's Inbox

If you think about it, e-mail is a strange communication medium. Instead of speaking with someone face to face, or talking over the telephone, where we can at least hear their voice, in e-mail, our brains think up words that our fingers type...

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Inviting All People...

The mission of Good Shepherd is to “Invite all people to grow into a Christ-centered life in God’s family.” This is the clear and concise statement that describes what we are all supposed to be doing together. Easter is a vital opportunity for us to...

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Lessons From Roseto

In 1882, ten men began the arduous journey from Roseto, Italy to the New World. In Roseto, they had toiled day in and day out in a stone quarry, which prepared them for similar work when they arrived near Bangor, Pennsylvania. The next year, fifteen more...

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Presbytery Gathering | Saturday, April 1st

Have you ever clicked onto Ancestry.com or another genealogy site to learn more about your family’s history? My mother has done so, tracing Bronzan family roots on one side through Yugoslavia and on the other side through the family of Abraham Lincoln! ...

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The Season of Lent

Southern California doesn't really have seasons, per se. And most of us probably like it that way. It's a bit colder in the winter months, but nothing worth bundling up for. Where I grew up in the Central Valley, seasons were more pronounced. August afternoons were...

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Leadership Development

If you attended our Annual Congregational Meeting or have had a chance to read this excerpt from the report, you already know that Good Shepherd's leaders began 2017 with a number of initiatives we are working toward. We have begun specifically...

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Who? What? When? Where? Why? How?

With 3 and 5-year-old children, the most common television shows in my home are cartoons. While my wife and I limit screentime, there are a few favorites: Paw Patrol (which features talking dogs that come to the rescue of anyone that needs help)...

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Firing At the Wrong Target

At the Athens Olympics in 2004, sport shooter Matt Emmons was just one trigger pull away from winning a second gold medal. He was so far ahead of second place in the fifty-meter three-position rifle competition that all he had to do was hit the target...

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He Took Them With Him and They Withdrew

A strange thing happens in Luke 9. We learn at the outset of the chapter that after Jesus called his disciples, he gave them power and authority to drive out all
demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and...

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The Rearview and the Windshield

It’s important to remember. Imagine forgetting your wedding anniversary or your best friend’s birthday! If you’ve ever forgotten an important date - or had an important date of yours forgotten - you know firsthand how important remembering is....

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Starting 2017 Right

The first Sunday of every month we celebrate Communion. And our worship attendance is always highest on those days - probably for that very reason. But what happens when the first Sunday of the month is the first Sunday of the year and that first Sunday...

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The Third Character

It happens in movies all the time. Two characters are engaged in some surprising conversation or activity when a third character reacts incredulously. That third character can’t believe what they’re seeing or hearing. And in so doing, they model for us - the viewer...

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The War on Christmas (Is In Our Hearts)

A juxtaposition is defined as "two things being seen or placed close together with contrasting effect." I’m sure there are a few in this weekend’s movie release, Rogue One, which continues the Star Wars franchise. There’s certainly one in this week’s...

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The Presbyterian's Cabinet

Every four years, after a new president is elected, the chosen candidate gets to appoint their cabinet. This practice dates back to George Washington, America's first president, who elected five other people to serve alongside him and Vice President...

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It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere you go! And I suppose it's time. A few weeks ago, I lamented how quickly our society jumped from Halloween to Christmas, skipping right over Thanksgiving. I wrote: This year I noticed, more than...

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Greek 101

It’s time for your Greek lesson! (I know what you’re thinking: “Don’t we get enough Greek in your sermons on Sundays!?” And, fair enough. Maybe so. But this one will be short. I promise.) Good Shepherd is a Presbyterian church. This describes not only our...

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A Dangerous Thing to Do

Apparently teaching through the Book of Acts is a dangerous thing for a preacher to do. Now I know. This fall we've been engaging this book of early church history, as we live into our mission, "Inviting all people to grow into a Christ-centered life in God's family."...

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What Happened to Thanksgiving!?

A strange thing happened this week. No, it doesn’t have to do with the Presidential Election. And no, it isn’t the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series for the first time since 1908. Though that was fun (for them!). It has to do with Halloween - or, better yet,...

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As If I Were A Lobster

Last week we engaged the conversion of Saul of Tarsus, who, following his transformation, became the Apostle to the Gentiles, sharing the good news of God's love all over the world. In my message, I noted how God is the author of...

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A Pumpkin in a Jar

It’s fall (though the weather might not seem like it). If you don’t believe me, stop by Starbucks. You’ll see: Pumpkin Spiced Lattes are on the menu! The season’s change reminded me a powerful metaphor in the book Church Unique used by our Staff and Session...

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"How's the Running Going?"

"How's the running going, Curtis?" It was a simple question. And it deserved a simple answer. "Great!" I could've said, responding succinctly. Or, "Really well, actually, I'm running five days a week, three miles each day," if I wanted to give more details....

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Division of Labor, Continued

Last week in our ongoing series To the Ends of the Earth, we encountered tension between two ethnicities in the early Christian movement. Recall that the Greek widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food (check out the message...

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Seeing Clearly

Last Sunday in our series through Acts, we engaged chapter 3, verse 4: “Peter looked straight at him, as did John. Then Peter said, ‘Look at us!’” As we discussed together, this was a strange thing for Luke to add. As a doctor and someone so interested in...

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Staff Appreciation

The outset of the Apostle Paul’s first century letters, sent to churches springing up at the ends of the earth, contain a common refrain: Thanksgiving. Is he merely being polite expressing this ongoing gratitude for his partners in ministry and mission?...

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Homogenous Unit Principle

I'm 35 years old (believe it or not). I'm married, with two kids. We live near El Dorado Park in a little fixer upper (that, in five years, we haven't fixed up all that much!). I like reading philosophy and listening to indie rock and drinking strong coffee and rooting for...

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Running, Again

The past few weeks, I've been trying something new: running. Well, it's not entirely new, since I used to run cross country and track in Junior High and High School. But it's been a while! Trying to run again has been challenging and uncomfortable. The day after...

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Forget What is Behind and Strain Toward What is Ahead

As we transition from summer into a busy fall, one particular passage has been on my mind. In chapter 3 of Paul’s letter to the Philippians, the Apostle to the Gentiles writes, I want to know Christ - yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation...

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Growing Together

My son, Moses - our firstborn - begins kindergarten this week. And I'm a wreck of emotions! I can remember the day he was born like it was yesterday. What they say really is true: They grow up too fast! And yet, in the 5 1/2 years since he was born, he’s not...

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Nine Ways to Pray for Church Leaders

This weekend we continue our six week series I Am A Covenant Partner, exploring what it means to be a member of the local church. As we have done so, I have been deeply encouraged by conversations following sermons and with those of you who are...

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The Wave

For the next two weeks the world will turn its attention to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, site of the 2016 Summer Olympics. Fans around the world will tune in to cheer on their country. Despite concerns about the Zika virus and subpar housing conditions...

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Thursday Night at the Greek

On Thursday night, my wife Cassie and I attended a concert at the Greek Theater. The band isn't her favorite musical act, but I had been looking forward to this show since I got tickets back in December. With work commitments and a busy family life, it had...

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Let the Little Children Come To Me...

Last month, I attended the first of three two-week intensives required for my Doctorate in Ministry at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. One of the first assignments was a paper chronicling my faith journey, especially as it related to leaders in churches I attended...

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Pokémon Go and the Christian Life

I'd heard about it. I'd read about it. I'd seen it on the news. And then I saw it in action. Kids on my street were playing Pokémon Go, a new video game that allows players to "travel between the real world and the virtual world" finding and catching "more than...

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Monkey Business

Last Sunday, June 26th, we encountered the mid-point of Esther. At long last, after countless coincidences and ironies, we saw the tables turn, not because of Mordecai’s bold faith, nor Esther’s victory in the king’s contest for a new queen. No, as you may recall...

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Going Viral... In Such a Time as This

I’m grateful to be married to Cassie, a thoughtful and deeply committed Christian woman. Who has an incredible amount of patience. Here’s proof: She puts up with me! Earlier this week she had an interesting insight. But first, the back story... We live near...

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Morning Cartoons

Like all kids, my two little rascals love cartoons. What’s not to love!? They feature happy little characters in a story that always works out for the best in just a half hour. If only real life was like that! Okay, I’ll admit it: I, too, enjoy watching cartoons with...

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Preschool Open House

Thursday night was Open House at my son's preschool. I know what you're thinking: "Open house!? At a preschool!?" Yes, Open House. At a preschool. But it wasn’t all bad - there were free cookies and powdered donuts and lemonade! Cassie and I loved it...

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Session-Approved Action Items - April 26, 2016

You may recall a new practice we've begun this year in an effort to increase trust and transparency between Good Shepherd's congregation, staff, elders and deacons. As previously noted, we will be posting here on our blog Session's monthly...

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Intergenerational > Multigenerational

At times, the volume is almost unbearable. No, I'm not thinking of the Long Beach Grand Prix or a loud concert I recently attended. The volume is almost unbearable around my own home. You see, I have two rather rambunctious children. I, my wife Cassie, ...

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"It Takes All Kinds"

“It takes all kinds” said a member of my small group, gently making fun of her husband’s rather direct style (which had just been on full display!). Certainly you’ve heard this phrase before. It’s origin is the Spanish novel Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes...

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Then Jesus Told Them This Parable...

This Sunday we begin our new series Going Viral, opening the Scriptures in order to be equipped by God to share the good news of Jesus. As we have discussed before, evangelism strikes fear and anxiety in many of our hearts! And while we...

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Fishing for Fish?

This week I had the opportunity to share lunch with a member of our church family. During our time together, he shared that he and his family spoke only Spanish in his childhood home. Once, in elementary school, a teacher asked him why he was delaying...

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He Is Risen!

"He is Risen!" "He is Risen, indeed!" These words will begin Easter Sunday gatherings around the world tomorrow, with over 2 billion Christians gathering together to declare their faith in the Risen One. And for good reason: Jesus' resurrection is no mere...

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The "E Word"

My firstborn child is now five years old - where the years have gone, I do not know! One of my and Cassie’s recent parenting challenges is responding to some of the new vocabulary our son has picked up at preschool. Nothing too bad, of course (it’s a Christian...

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Session-Approved Action Items - March 15, 2016

You may recall a new practice we've begun this year in an effort to increase trust and transparency between Good Shepherd's congregation, staff, elders and deacons. As previously noted, we will be posting here on our blog Session's monthly...

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High Trust, Low Control

I hope you apprecated learning more about the ECO National Gathering from members of our staff these past few weeks. If you missed any of their posts, click on any of the following names to read feedback from this great event: Paul White...

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Dispatches from the ECO National Gathering, Part 3

This week we continue our series of notes where members of our leadership team report back from the ECO National Gathering. This week, Director of Administration Thea Walker and Director of Children's Ministries Michelle Heath share their thoughts:...

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Session-Approved Action Items - February 23, 2016

If you attended our annual congregational meeting, you may recall my saying that we need to increase trust and transparency amongst Good Shepherd's congregation, staff, elders, and deacons. To that end, in hopes of increasing trust and transparency...

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Dispatches from the ECO National Gathering, Part 2

How can Good Shepherd support and equip families to be the primary spiritual caregiver for their children? Youth group activities, missions trips, devotionals and intentional discipleship of youth are all important to give kids the best chance to be life-long followers...

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Dispatches from the ECO National Gathering, Part 1

This morning we begin a series of posts where members of our leadership team report back from the ECO National Gathering, which took place at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, Newport Beach, January 26th-28th. This week, Associate Pastor...

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ECO National Gathering, This Sunday, and Beyond!

This past Tuesday through Thursday was the ECO National Gathering, held this year at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Newport Beach. After previous years were spent travelling to Orlando, Florida and Dallas, Texas, it was great to be able to return to...

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10 Reasons to Attend the Annual Congregational Meeting Instead of Watching the Broncos-Patriots Game

The rumors are true. We actually scheduled our Annual Congregational Meeting for this Sunday, January 24th at 12pm, in the final weeks of the NFL season. And yes, that will interfere with watching the New England Patriots and Denver Broncos football game...

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Everyone Plays

Last Saturday, during our Elder and Staff retreat, Pastor Paul received a text message that his son had scored a basket in his youth basketball game. We all joined him in celebration for his son's two points! I wasn't as successful in my youth sports...

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Learning Backward, Planning Forward

In recent weeks, in this space, we have both reflected upon 2015 and looked ahead toward 2016. It’s an important exercise, not only looking ahead to the future, but processing where we’ve been. Just this week, I ran across a quote from John Dewey...

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2016: A New Beginning

If you’ve ever been trapped in a hotel room and a man named Gideon had been there first and you opened the book he left behind, you would find on the first page these words: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was...

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2015... What a Year!

2015… What a year in the life of Good Shepherd! It was a flurry of activity the whole year through! Think of all we’ve gone through in just the past twelve months… At our Annual Congregational Meeting in January, the Covenant Partners of our church...

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Ask Not?

As we continue to celebrate God's greatest gift this Christmas season and look to the future He has for us in 2016, I am reminded of a familiar phrase you have no doubt heard before. It was boldly declared at the outset of a New Year, just months...

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An Invitation to Year-End Giving

As we continue our Advent series The Greatest Gift, I am so grateful for your generous, sacrificial giving throughout 2015, continually responding to God's gift of Jesus. In the midst of denominational, pastoral, and staff transitions, your financial giving...

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The Greatest Gift (and Mary's Response!)

This Sunday in our worship gatherings we continue our Advent series The Greatest Gift, turning our attention to Mary's interaction with the angel Gabriel in Luke 1: In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in...

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The Greatest Gift (and Our Response)

At a Coffee with Curtis a while back, someone in attendance asked a question about stewardship (forgive me: I can’t remember the specific inquiry!). I replied with a story I heard long ago about a pastor and a church embarking on a capital campaign....

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Our ECO Introduction Video!

A few weeks ago, special guest Steve Stiles joined us on campus with his video camera, documenting our worship gatherings, classrooms, and life together. He did so as a part of an ongoing series sponsored by the Southern California Presbytery of ECO....

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What's Your Bag of Dimes?

This week you should have received a letter, pledge card, and envelope you can use to commit to Good Shepherd for our upcoming calendar year. We will have an opportunity to present these pledges in either of our worship gatherings on Sunday, November...

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Report from ELI Training - Elder Sue Nelson-Brown

Beginning two weeks ago, continuing last week, and concluding today, we have a chance to hear reports from the three elders who joined me in attending the Elder Leadership Institute training in Estes Park, Colorado on October 15th-18th. This week...

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Report from ELI Training - Elder Dan Krehbiel

Beginning last week, continuing today and next week, we have a chance to hear reports from the three elders who joined me in attending the Elder Leadership Institute training in Estes Park, Colorado on October 15th-18th. This week...

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Report from ELI Training - Elder Roberta Ramont

Beginning today and continuing for the next two weeks, we will have a chance to hear reports from the three elders who joined me in attending the Elder Leadership Institute training last weekend in Estes Park, CO. This week, Roberta Ramont...

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Disciple-Making at 35,000 Feet

I type these words on my laptop while travelling somewhere around 500 miles per hour at 35,000 feet in the air. No, I haven’t learned any tricks from our old buddy Clark Kent… I’m currently aboard Southwest Airlines flight #2433, flying from John Wayne Airport...

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Be A Pest!

On Sunday, October 25th, our fall series Welcome Home will lead us to engage Ephesians 4.11-13, which reads: "Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that...

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Visitors < Guests

A few weeks ago I shared one of those e-mails that, as a pastor, I hate to receive. You may recall that it didn’t criticize my theological perspective in a Sunday morning sermon or a recent leadership decision, but rather, candidly revealed how...

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By-Laws

Interested in learning more about our updated By-Laws? Click here to read or download a draft for future congregational approval. The name of this church shall be Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church of Orange County, Los Alamitos, California. This church was...

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New Wednesday Evening Schedule

If you were in worship last Sunday, September 13th for the kick-off to our fall series Welcome Home, you may recall a little “staff meeting” that took place right in the middle of the gathering. If you missed it, you can see it here (be sure to watch for a...

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Welcoming Training

It was one of those e-mails that, as a pastor, I hate to receive. No, this particular message did not criticize the theological perspective of my latest sermon, question a recent leadership decision, or disparage my current hairstyle (though a few of those would have...

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This Fall at Good Shepherd

During a 1993 radio interview, the host complimented author William Gibson for the accuracy of past predictions. While downplaying his ability to predict the future, he stated, "The future is already here - it’s just not very evenly distributed."...

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Staff Updates

What a summer it has been at Good Shepherd! This summer included a life changing Confirmation Adventure for our 8th graders in Yosemite, a great week of fun at Campus by the Sea for our Middle and High Schoolers, over 290 children at Everest...

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Introducing a New Member of our Staff Team

If you’ve been on campus in the past couple weeks, you may have noticed a new face in the office. On Monday, July 27th - amidst the 290 children on campus for VBS! - we welcomed Mary Gerard as a new member of our staff team....

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Steps Toward Alignment

In my last blog post, Two Horses are Better than One (Or are They?), we engaged the process of alignment. You may remember the various analogies, or perhaps the graphic representation of the stages of alignment. If you missed that post, check it out before...

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Two Horses are Better than One (Or are They?)

I once read a story about a pastor who, while in seminary, purchased a Toyota Cressida from a fellow seminarian. On his first road trip from Dallas to Houston, upon accelerating to 65, the car began wobbling violently. After a front-end alignment, though,...

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Pray Like Jesus

In the midst of declining religious commitment in America, one thing remains constant: prayer! Commenting on a recent study by the University of Chicago, the Washington Post reports: “American religion is on the ropes, but is has a prayer.” Author Scott...

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The Discipline of Celebration

Richard Foster’s classic book, Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth, engages spiritual disciplines as the door to liberation in a life of Christian faith. You may know and practice some of these spiritual disciplines already: meditation, prayer, fasting...

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Where There Is No Vision, People Perish

Perhaps you’ve heard the phrase, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” This saying is a sobering reminder to the Vision Team, made up of myself and Elders Milt Houghton, Sue Nelson-Brown, and Roberta Ramont. And like so many other great sayings...

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Pastor's Note | Sunday, June 7th

"The only constant is change." No doubt you've heard this saying before! It's been attributed to Heraclitus, a 5th century BC Greek philsopher, who authored a number of other similar phrases, as well: Everything changes and nothing stands still....

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Upcoming Staff Transitions

Dear Good Shepherd Covenant Partners and Friends, Greetings! I pray this finds you well. I hope you have received your invitation and are planning to attend the service and dinner celebrating the ministry of Rev. Dr. Jim Wilson on Sunday, June 28...

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Pastor's Note | Sunday, May 24th

Sri Lankan priest D.T. Niles once noted that "Evangelism is just one beggar telling another beggar where to find bread." How true that is! In recent weeks, under the leadership of Elder Sue Nelson-Brown, we have pioneered a renewed emphasis in evangelism...

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Pastor's Note | Sunday, May 10th

Abraham Lincoln, America's sixteenth President, once declared, "Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe." His quote - at first seemingly counterintuitive - clearly illustrates the importance of preparation!...

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Mission Affinity Group questions

This morning in worship I mentioned the role of Mission Affinity Groups in the life of every ECO congregation. The narrative questions we will be held accountable for are included below. If you'd like to learn more about Mission Affinity Groups, click onto ECO's website...

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Holy Week 2015

Gather at Good Shepherd this Holy Week to rejoice in Palm Sunday, reflect upon Maundy Thursday, remember Good Friday, and celebrate Easter Sunday! As always, children are welcome in each gathering. Nursery, childcare, and children's classes...

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Christmas Eve at Good Shepherd

Join us to celebrate Christmas on Wednesday, December 24th at 4, 7 or 9pm! Our 4pm Family Gathering will feature children from our congregation who will retell the Christmas Story, with an opportunity for us to sing our favorite carols. Our 7 & 9pm...

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Bylaws for November 23rd Congregational Meeting

On Sunday, November 23rd at 10am in the Sanctuary is a Congregational Meeting to affirm God's call of Elders and Deacons to serve Good Shepherd, as well as approve updates to our congregational bylaws in accordance with our...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, November 8th

It was one of those moments we weren't quite prepared for as parents. It was just a couple weeks ago, when my family and I were in Santa Barbara for the weekend to attend my wife's college reunion. We were staying with good friends, Dana and Beth Allin...

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Town Hall Meeting | Saturday, September 21st

On Sunday, September 21st the Good Shepherd community gathered in the Sanctuary to be updated on our denominational transition and hear a report from Don Goehner, who served as a consultant earlier this year regarding upcoming staff transitions. If you...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, September 6th

I'll give you the bad news first: Summer is over. And now the good news: Fall is here! As students head back to school and adults return to a busy season at work, many of us mourn the loss of summer's long days, time spent leisurely laying (or actively...

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ECO National Gathering Videos

Monday, August 18th through Wednesday, August 20th, I, Pastor Jim, Elders Roberta Ramont and Sue Nelson Brown attended the 2014 National Gathering of ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians in Dallas, Texas. I know - Dallas, Texas...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, June 21st

A few weeks ago, we thought together about an event in Acts 15 where Paul and Barnabas separated in ministry because of a disagreement. Verses 36-41 read, Some time...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, May 3rd

Sometimes it's easy to long for an earlier time of life - one that was simpler, for one reason or another. Having children of our own has prompted my wife, Cassie, and I to recognize the...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, April 12th

Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, “Hosanna! Blessed is he...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, March 22nd

Our 3 year old, Moses, is on our church campus at least three times each week: Sunday mornings for worship, Wednesday mornings for Mom's Connect, and Wednesday evenings...

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Meet Mallory Farrar!

Sunday, March 2nd we met Mallory Anne Farrar, who recently joined our staff as Student Ministries Assistant. Check out this short video if you missed getting to know Mallory!...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, March 1st

Phone. Text. E-mail. Voicemail. Facebook. Twitter. Skype. Instagram. YouTube. We’ve come along way from the Pony Express! Answer this. Respond to that. Post, tweet, like, comment. We have...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, January 11th

What are the chances!? It was a mere couple of hours after we thought together about "Eating Together" last weekend that I saw it. Since my wife, Cassie, was still up north visiting family with...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, January 6th

After giving - and receiving! - presents Christmas morning, after eating Christmas dinner that night (with that extra slice of pie, because, "Why not? It's Christmas!"), after ringing...

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Pastor's Note | Saturday, December 14th

I remember it like it was yesterday. Standing in that baptismal pool, it felt like I was miles above the rest of the congregation seated below. Next to me in the waist high water was Reverend...

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Pastor's Note | Monday, December 9th

After months of study, discussion, and prayer regarding our denominational affiliation, our Session - consisting of both Pastors and Elders - are meeting this Tuesday, December...

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Study Guide | Ephesians 3.16-21

Hi friends, This weekend, we continue a discussion of our mission statement: Good Shepherd exists to make disciples of Jesus Christ who connect with God, grow in faith and serve...

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Study Guide | Isaiah 6.1-8

Hi friends, This week we kick off our fall series, “Gospel in Life.” We read a lot about the gospel, we hear a lot about the gospel, we may even talk a lot about the gospel, but what is...

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Study Guide | 1st John 5.5-12

Hello Good Shepherd Family and Friends, Here’s the study guide for 1 John 5.5-12. We are nearing the end of our “Summer of Love” study of 1 John and I am impressed how John circles...

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Study Guide | 1st John 4.13-5.4

Hi friends, As we look to the conclusion of our Summer of Love series in the Letter of First John, we turn our attention to something we can all relate to: fear. When was the last time you...

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Study Guide | 1st John 4.1-6

"This is a test. This station is conducting a test of the Emergency Broadcast System. This is only a test." Do those words sound familiar? They always seem to pop up right in...

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Study Guide | 1st John 3.19-24

Hi friends, This weekend we continue the Summer of Love, our series in the Letter of First John. We have heard John’s chorus, time and time again, the command that we love one another...

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Study Guide | 1st John 3.11-18

Have you ever been asked a loaded question? You know, that's when the person asking already has a perceived answer in mind? This week, as we continue our Summer of Love...

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Study Guide | 1st John 2.28-3.3

Hi friends, I hope you had a fun and safe 4th of July! Have you ever heard the expression "Like father, like son"? It's said pretty regularly at my house, as my wife is convinced that...

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Pastor's Note | Monday, June 17th

Saturday morning I joined Pastors Jim and Paul, as well as a number of Elder Commissioners from our church at a Los Ranchos Presbytery denominational discernment meeting...

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Study Guide | 1st John 2.7-11

Hi friends, This weekend we're studing 1st John 2.7-11. In this passage, John engages what the church is supposed to look like, as it reflects Jesus not only to the outside world...

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Study Guide | 1st John 2.3-6

Hi friends, I hope this finds you well. We continue our Summer of Love series this weekend in 1st John 2.3-6, thinking together about abiding, remaining, and living in Christ, as well as...

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Study Guide | 1st John 1.1-4

Hi friends, In all three worship gatherings this weekend we're kicking off a brand new series we're calling the Summer of Love! No, we're not discussing social phenomenon of 1967...

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Study Guide | Rooted in Church

Hi friends, This is week six of our series Rooted: In the Soil of a Vibrant, Growing Faith, which may strike you as odd, since there are only five solas. What, then, are we going to talk...

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Study Guide | Rooted in God's Glory

Hi friends, We continue our Rooted series in this week's study guide and at all three worship gatherings this weekend. Glory to God Alone, or Soli Deo Gloria, as the Reformers would have...

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Pastor's Note | Monday, April 29th

For the past few weeks we have been engaging the roots of biblical Christianity in a series we're calling Rooted: In the Soil of a Vibrant, Growing Faith. Each week in our sermon...

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What Do You Enjoy about The Open Table?

Why do you come to The Open Table Tuesdays at Good Shepherd? When we conceived of this ministry we determined that there were so many reasons why members of Good Shepherd...

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Presbytery Men's Annual Breakfast

The 2013 Annual Spring Gathering of the Presbyterian Men of Los Ranchos will be a breakfast featuring Emad Samir as the speaker. Emad is a noted Egyptologist and Scholar...

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Study Guide | Rooted in Grace

This week we continue engaging the central doctrines of the Protestant Reformation in a series we're calling Rooted: In the Soil of a Vibrant, Growing Faith. Thus far in our quest...

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Pastor's Note | Monday, April 15th

I've been reflecting upon the wonder and blessing of Christian community this past week, prompted by all the ways I have been - and continue to be - blessed by the Good Shepherd...

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Study Guide | Rooted in Jesus

The 20th century theologian Karl Barth was once asked what was the greatest theological statement he'd ever heard. His response was Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible...

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Pastor's Note | Monday, April 8th

Hi friends, I was so sorry to miss gathering for worship this weekend, especially as we began our new series. I was unable to join you as I am currently in Springfield, Missouri, ...

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Study Guide | Matthew 28.1-20

Hi friends, A blessed holy week to you and yours. It was an honor to join with many of you who were able to attend our Maundy Thursday gathering this evening. This weekend...

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Pastor's Note | Monday, March 25th

It's been said that teachers teach what they need to learn. I've come to believe the same is true for preachers' preaching. Or, at least, it is for me. Last weekend we engaged...

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Study Guide | Matthew 9.9-13

Hi friends, This weekend - on Saturday at 5pm and Sunday morning at 8:45 & 10:30am - we continue our Lenten series Not A Fan: Becoming Completely Committed Followers...

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Study Guide | Luke 7.36-50

Hi friends, Grace and Peace be with you. I write from the Serra Retreat Center in Malibu, where I - alongside Pastors Jim and Paul - am attending a retreat of the Los Ranchos...

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After Thoughts | "Follow Me"

John Calvin, father of the Reformed tradition, once wrote that "human nature, so to speak, is a perpetual factory of idols." Now, remember, idols are inherently good things that are...

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Study Guide | John 6

This week we began the season of Lent, journeying toward Holy Week. If you were unable to be at our gathering for Ash Wednesday and would like to think through the beginning...

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Marble, Soap, Dust

Ash Wednesday is one of my favorite days in the church calendar. Now, that may seem rather morbid, considering that it's a day to remember our mortality. But my appreciation doesn't...

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Study Guide | Isaiah 28.23-29

Hi friends, Greetings from Orlando! Pastor Paul and I are currently attending the Fellowship of Presbyterians and Evangelical Covenant Order of Presbyterians national gathering...

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Study Guide | Genesis 11.1-9

Hi friends, Have you ever heard the phrase "Make a name for yourself"? How was it used? Positively or negatively? This week, we continue our series Every Good Endeavor...

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Study Guide | Genesis 3.1-19

The past two weeks we have been discussing God's good creation - and His call on us to continuing tilling, working, and cultivating the garden He created in our series, Every Good Endeavor...

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Study Guide | Genesis 2.8-20

As we continue in our study of work entitled Every Good Endeavor we take a look at God’s invitation given to Adam, and to all human beings, to take on a role as co-creators...

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Did You Increase Your Pledge!?

Did you increase your pledge for the 2013 calendar year!? If so, thank you! If you give automatically through your PayPal account on our website, however, changing the amount...

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Let Your Life Speak

This past weekend we kicked off a brand new series for a brand new year we're calling Every Good Endeavor, a title we've borrowed from Pastor Timothy Keller's book of the same name...

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Winter Camp Videos!

This past weekend, January 4th-6th, our Junior and Middle School students travelled up the hill to Forset Home for a weekend of fun and learning about God! Here's a sneak peek of what...

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Study Guide | Genesis 1.26-2.3

Hi friends, Happy New Year! I hope and pray your holiday season allowed time to celebrate with family and friends. And yet, after the holidays, it's back to work! It's been estimated...

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Study Guide | Luke 2.22-35

This weekend Pastor Paul will help us conclude our Christmas series "Singing the Songs of the Season" with one final rousing chorus from a righteous man who was waiting for...

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Study Guide | Luke 1.57-80

Hi friends, This weekend we continue our Advent series, Singing the Songs of the Season, humming along with Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist, in Luke 1.57-80. Last week...

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Study Guide | Luke 1.39-56

Hi friends, This weekend we continue our Advent series, Singing the Songs of the Season, at each of our three worship gatherings: Saturday at 5pm, and Sunday at 8:45 & 10:30am....

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Study Guide | Philippians 4.10-23

Hi friends, Grace and Peace be with you this busy and hectic Thanksgiving / Black Friday weekend! It's rather fitting that we conclude our series Joy on the Journey...

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Study Guide | Philippians 4.2-9

Hi friends, We continue in our study of Paul's letter to the Philippians this weekend, looking specifically at 4.2-9. As we will see in worship this weekend and in our study guide with our...

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Study Guide | Philippians 3.12-16

Hi friends, Despite what your favorite coffee shop says, it's not yet the Christmas season (though I'm sure their holiday blend is delicious!). We continue in our study of Philippians...

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Election Night Communion Gathering

Tuesday, Novmber 6th is election day. It's a day filled with hopes and dreams for the future of our country, a day that presidential candidates and political parties have been...

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Study Guide | Philippians 3.1-11

Here's this week's study guide on Philippians 3.1-11. In this passage, Paul discusses the good things upon which he used to hang his hat, declaring that he now considers them...

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Study Guide | Philippians 2.12-18

Here is this week's study guide on Philippians 2.12-18. In it Paul, the great Apostle to the Gentiles, reveals the profound calling of disciples of Jesus Christ: That we not retreat into a...

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Study Guide | Philippians 1.18-26

Hi friends, This week we continue in our Joy on the Journey fall series on Paul's letter to the Philippians. Last week we addressed Paul's chains and critics; this week, his crisis...

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Study Guide | Philippians 1.12-18

Hi friends, In the Spirit of the Apostle Paul's letter to the Philippians, Grace and Peace! This week we continue our fall series, Joy on the Journey, engaging Paul's Letter...

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Study Guide | Matthew 7.21-29

Hi friends, This weekend we conclude our summer series Build Your House on That, by engaging Matthew 7.21-29! After 11 weeks, we encounter the inspiration behind...

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Good Shepherd Goes Mobile!

Greetings friends, Our friends at Church Plant Media, who designed and host our home on the web, recently updated our content management system (fancy terminology...

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Renew Your Ralph's e-Scrip

Hi friends, A few month's back we let you know about an opportunity to support our Women's Ministry simply by shopping for your groceries at Ralph's! What a deal, right!?...

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Study Guide | Matthew 7.1-12

Greetings friends, In Matthew 7.1-12, this week's passage, and study guide, we engage the difficult tension between judging (a necessary part of life) and being judgmental...

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After Thoughts | Richard Wilkinson

This weekend we thought together about Jesus' words in Matthew 6.19-43, including His commandment that we not "treasure up treasures on earth," but instead respond...

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Study Guide | Matthew 6.19-34

Greetings friends, Here's this week's study guide, on Matthew 6.19-34. In this passage, Jesus speaks boldly of God's providential care over us, inviting us to live lives free of anxiety...

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VBS Performance: One Night Only!

Tonight at 7pm in the Sanctuary over 160 children from our community will be performing songs they've learned this week at Vacation Bible School. All week they've...

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Study Guide | Matthew 6.7-15

Here's this week's study guide on Matthew 6.7-15. In it, we engage the Lord's Prayer - or better yet, the Disciple's Prayer - since in it, we are instructed how to pray! It comes right...

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An Update from Jessica Knutzen

Pastors Jim, Paul and I recently received an e-mail update from Jessica Knutzen, who is a member of Good Shepherd and is "under our care" for ordination. You may recall ...

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Facebook Users: Don't Miss Out!

Did you know you can "like" Good Shepherd on Facebook, but still miss status updates, pictures and posts!? It's true! Here's how to be sure you're not left out: Click onto our...

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After Thoughts | Les Miserables

This past weekend, we thought together about Jesus' invitation to life a live free of revenge, instead seeking to counterculturally love our enemies and pray for those who persecute...

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Off the Shelf | Date Your Wife

Last weekend, Pastor Paul taught on Matthew 5.31-37 in our summer Sermon on the Mount series Build Your House on That! In his message, Beyond the Syllabus, Paul engaged...

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The Weekly | July 23rd

Your Change Will Make a Change! Bring your change to church next Sunday, July 29th to "make a change" for our worldwide missionaries! Successful We Care Food Drive...

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Study Guide | Matthew 5.38-48

Hi friends, Here's this week's study guide on Matthew 5.38-48. In these verses we engage some of the most radical, countercultural teachings of Jesus. Teachings that inspired...

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Study Guide | Matthew 5.31-37

Hi friends, Here's this week's sermon based study guide on Matthew 5.31-37. Our apologies that it's only now being sent out and posted: We had some difficulty with our e-mail system...

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The Weekly | July 7th & 8th

Parents! Join us Saturday, July 28th for a short topic on strengthening your marriage from 6-6:30pm in the Fireside Room... and then enjoy a date on your own with your spouse up until...

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Study Guide | Matthew 5.21-30

Hi friends, Here's this week's study guide on Matthew 5.21-30. These verses contain the first two of six "antitheses" within Jesus' Sermon on the Mount. I hope and pray it helps us...

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The Weekly | June 30th & July 1st

On June 30th & July 1st, we are collecting these food items in the parking lot (look for open car trunks!). We are collecting: canned fruit, canned chicken, canned roast beef...

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Study Guide | Matthew 5.17-20

Hi friends, Here's this week's sermon based study guide on Matthew 5.17-20. In this passage we see Jesus' commitment to fulfill God's commandments - and his encouragement...

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The Weekly | June 23rd & 24th

Good Shepherd is currently seeking nominations for elders and deacons to serve in a variety of positions. You can learn more about the open positions in the "Working Together"...

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The Weekly | June 16th & 17th

Visit the Men's Ministry table on the patio this weekend to pick up a free book for the father, husband or son in your life. Limited number of copies... One per family, please....

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The Weekly | Sunday, June 10th

If you received a prayer letter, please let us know if there is something specific we can pray for you and your family. E-mail your request or write your request on the back...

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Study Guide | Jonah 4.5-11

Hi friends, This week we conclude our study of the Book of Jonah, examining chapter 4, verses 5-11. This passage contains God's "thirty-nine word" response to his wayward...

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The Weekly | Sunday, June 3rd

Self Help Interfaith Program, an outreach to those struggling with homelessness in Orange County, is returning to Good Shepherd June 30th through July 13th. Sign up on the patio...

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Study Guide | Jonah 4.1-4

Hi friends, Here's the sermon based study guide for this weekend's text, Jonah 4.1-4. We've journeyed with Jonah away from God's call on his life, which has taken us down to Joppa...

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The Weekly | Sunday, May 27th

FLIPT is wrapping up with a giant family BBQ on Wednesday, May 30th. Don't miss it! The main course will be provided, you bring a dessert to share! RSVP to Karen and be sure...

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The Weekly | Sunday, May 20th

Would you like to gain more understanding of God's Word and enjoy the fellowship of others on your spiritual journey? We are happy to answer those questions and more...

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After Thoughts | Jonah 2.1-10

This weekend we engaged Jonah's prayer from inside the belly of the giant fish. Here are some questions from the week's study guide to help you further engage with and respond...

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The Weekly | Sunday, May 13th

Good Shepherd's Children's Choir is excited to present "Good Neighbor Sam," a children's musical, on Sunday, May 20th at 2pm. This retelling of the story of the...

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Study Guide | Jonah 2.1-10

Hi friends, We continue our journey with Jonah, Israel's wayward prophet, this weekend. We've travelled with him from his call to preach to the Ninevites, down to the city...

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After Thoughts | Jonah 1.11-17

This weekend we looked at Jonah 1.11-17. Here's some questions from our study guide to guide reflecting on the passage and message: Are there things you feel you have to do...

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Women of Faith "One Day" Event

Women of Good Shepherd, don't miss out! On Saturday, June 9th, plan to attend the Women of Faith event "One Day" at the Terrace Theater in Long Beach. You will be blessed...

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The Weekly | Sunday, May 6th

Looking for a Mother's Day Gift? Women's Retreat Committee are selling beautiful flower bowls, herb gardens, and a new succulent bowl on the patio this weekend!...

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Study Guide | Jonah 1.11-17

Hi friends, We continue our study of the Book of Jonah this weekend at each of our three gatherings: Saturday evening at 5pm as well as Sunday morning at 8:45 & 10:30am....

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The Weekly | Sunday, April 29th

Parents! Join us for appetizers and a short topic on strengthening your marriage from 6-6:30pm in the Fireside Room - and then enjoy a date on your own with your spouse...

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Women's Spring Luncheon | Saturday, May 5th

Join us for an afternoon of women's fellowship while supporting GSPC's world and local missions! Tickets are now on sale for the Women's Spring Luncheon, scheduled...

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After Thoughts | Jonah 1.4-6

This weekend we continued our teaching series on the Book of Jonah. After hearing the message, here are some questions from our small group study guide to help you and...

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Study Guide | Jonah 1.4-6

Hi friends, Last weekend we kicked off a number of new opportunities in the life of our community, including a new teaching series through the Book of Jonah, which we'll continue...

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Give Online: A Member's E-mail

Hi friends, Yesterday we received this e-mail from a longtime member of our church family regarding our new online giving page, that we wanted to pass on! She writes: Thank you...

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After Thoughts | Jonah 1.1-3

This weekend we began a number of new opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love, including a new teaching series on the Book of Jonah. After hearing...

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The Weekly | Sunday, April 15th

Parents! Engage the story of Jonah at home with your children by picking up your FREE copy of Jonah and the Worm, by Jill Brisco, when you gather for worship this weekend!...

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Spring Special Needs Dance

You are invited to our spring dance for those with special needs. D.J. Wayne Harrington plays great music to dance to, listen to and enjoy with a room full of friends! We'll have...

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Study Guide | Jonah 1.1-3

Hi friends, This weekend we kick off a number of new opportunities for our congregation and community: the Foundations course, SHIFT, and a brand new 5pm Saturday evening...

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New Saturday Evening Gathering

After months of dreaming and praying, planning and preparing, on Saturday, April 14th at 5pm, we're kicking off a brand new worship gathering opportunity for our congregation...

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The Weekly | Sunday, April 8th

The women who went to the tomb to properly treat Jesus' body for burial, went with heavy hearts, dashed hopes, and the dread that comes from the death of a loved one. ...

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The Weekly | Sunday, April 1st

Palm Sunday is upon us, ushering us into Holy Week. As I look toward this time it's with extreme gratitude. Gratitude for the things God has done through the person of Jesus...

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The Weekly | Sunday, March 25th

As we approach the fifth Sunday in Lent the observances of Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday are just around the corner. I hope you will...

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Christ in the Passover

Whenever we celebrate the Lord's Supper in each of our three worship gatherings, we remember the words of Jesus, which are commonly referred to as "The Words of Institution"...

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The Weekly | Sunday, March 18th

After months of thinking, praying and dreaming together about how we can welcome those not yet here, Good Shepherd will embark on a new chapter of mission and ministry...

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The Weekly | Sunday, March 11th

The season of Lent is a time of change, a time to be transformed by God - to strip away attitudes and behaviors that dishonor God and to adopt new ways of living lives of gratitude and service....

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The Weekly | Sunday, March 4th

The season of Lent is a special time within the Church year - a time to focus on the events of our Lord's "Passion." Passion is the Christian theological term used for the events...

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The Weekly | Sunday, February 26th

The South Gate entrance is closed from the parking lot to pedestrian traffic due to construction. Please use the North Gate entrance (or, if it's open, sneak through the gym!)....

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The Weekly | Sunday, February 19th

I have been impressed by reading some of author Henri Nouwen's reflections on drawing near to God. He cites that our English word "absurd" comes from the Latin for...

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The Weekly | Sunday, February 12th

February 22nd is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the season of Lent. This is a special time of focusing on the events of the last week of Jesus' earthly ministry, his crucifixion,...

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The Weekly | Sunday, February 5th

As we move into 2012 there are two significant things I would like to comment on. First is the celebration of 50 years of Good Shepherd's ministry. This is a significant milestone...

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Groceries for Good Shepherd!

Hi friends, Did you know that you can buy groceries to benefit your church family? That's right! And just in time for Super Bowl Sunday! Simply print out this Community Contribution...

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The Weekly | Sunday, January 29th

Join us at the Open Table between 5:30 and 7pm on Tuesday, January 31st for dinner and then our Annual Congregational Celebration at 7pm in the Sanctuary. Childcare...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, January 22nd

Hi friends, My apologies that I'm only now posting this week's e-Bulletin! Here it is! I missed sending it out earlier as I was away at a conference this past week on behalf of...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, January 15th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! May the many opportunties it holds lead us to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love! See you soon, Curtis ...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, January 8th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! Note especially the many programs and classes that start back up this week! Why not start off the New Year with a new opportunity to connect...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, January 1st

Hi friends, In the midst of the excitement of New Year's day and return to our study of the Letter to the Hebrews, I neglected to post our weekly e-Bulletin. Here it is! Be sure to note...

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Study Guide | The Letter to the Hebrews 11.1-6

Hi friends, After taking a break for our Advent series Simply Christmas, this Sunday, January 1st we return to our study of the Letter to the Hebrews in all three worship...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, December 25th

Hi friends, Merry Christmas! On this day we recall the words to that famous hymn: "Joy to the World, the Lord is come! Let earth recieve her King!" Here's this week's e-Bulletin. Please note...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, December 18th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! As always, it's available in printed form on campus tomorrow morning. I look forward to gathering with you then!...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, December 11th

Hi friends, Here is this week's e-Bulletin! Note especially our Christmas Eve and Christmas Day schedule... and don't forget about our annual Festival of Carols tomorrow at 3pm!...

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Study Guide | Simply Christmas: Luke 1.39-56

Hi friends, Here's Pastor Jim's weekly study guide for this Sunday's text, Luke 1.39-56, third Sunday in our Advent series Simply Christmas. May it be a blessing to you....

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Middle School Winter Camp | January 6th-8th

6th-8th grade students! Don't miss this year's Winter Camp at Forest Home learning how to Be Light! Check out the promo video below then click onto these registration forms to save...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, December 4th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! Please also note an update to our website: In an effort to simplify the top navigation, News and Resources menu options are now found under...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, November 27th

Hi friends, We've all heard that tryptophan, found in our Thanksgiving turkeys, makes us sleepy. Apparently, it makes ME forgetful, considering that I forgot to send out last week's...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, November 13th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin (also available in printed form on Sunday morning). As always, it's filled with a number of opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, November 6th

Hi friends, My apologies! I forgot to send out our e-Bulletin this past weekend! I'm sorry... You may have already picked it up on Sunday morning. If not, here it is!...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, October 30th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin. As always, it's also available in the Sanctuary Narthex and Zirbel Hall tomorrow morning. Don't miss two great opportunities:...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, October 23rd

Hi friends, I hope this finds you well. Here's this week's e-Bulletin! See you Sunday, as we continue our journey through the Letter to the Hebrews!...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, October 16th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! As always it is filled with opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love. Note especially a number of events this weekend...

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Study Guide | The Letter to the Hebrews 9.23-28

Hi friends, Here's Pastor Jim's study guide for this Sunday's text, Hebrews 9.23-28. If you think of it, keep Jim in prayer as he is away this week on study leave, reading and praying...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, October 9th

Hi friends, My apologies!!! I was so excited to spend some time at this weekend's camp out that I forgot to send out the e-Bulletin! You probably already picked one up on Sunday...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, October 2nd

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! It's overflowing with all kinds of opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love! May that not only be true of our e-Bulletin...

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Invisible Children present 'Tony'

Invisible Children exist to help stop the use of child soldiers in Africa, specifically in Uganda and the Congo. They will be here Sunday, October 9th showing their newest documentary Tony...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, September 25th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! May the many opportunities guide us in connecting with God, growing in faith and serving in love. See you tomorrow...

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Flu Shots | Sunday, September 25th

Greetings, The Health Ministries Team is providing free flu shots at Good Shepherd this Sunday, September 25th! If you would like a flu shot please head to the Gym. Wearing shirts, blouses...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, September 18th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! Please note the financial update through August... Thank you for your faithful (and often sacrificial) giving! See you tomorrow,...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, September 11th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! Be sure to note the Antique Car Show and Old Fashioned Family Fun Festival next Saturday as well as fall kick-offs for small groups and children's...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, September 4th

Hi friends, You know fall is fast approaching when our e-Bulletin begins to overflow with upcoming programs and activities! And that is certainly the case in this week's edition! Note...

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Study Guide | The Letter to the Hebrews 7.20-28

Hi friends, Here's Pastor Jim's study guide for this Sunday's text, Hebrews 7.20-28, in which our author continues to elaborate on the good news that Jesus has become our Great High Priest....

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, August 28th

Hi friends, I hope and pray this finds you well, and somehow, staying out of the heat! Here's this week's e-Bulletin! If you're attending Camp Surf Day tomorrow, please note we'll be at Tower 18...

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Study Guide | The Letter to the Hebrews 7.11-19

Hi friends, Greetings from the Student Ministries' water ski retreat! Here is Pastor Jim's study guide on Hebrews 7.11-19, our text for this Sunday. After preparing this study for us...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, August 21st

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! We learned after "going to press" that our food drive for WeCare resulted in over a ton of food... LITERALLY! 2,139 pounds! ...

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Study Guide | The Letter to the Hebrews 7.1-10

Hi friends, Here's Pastor Jim's study guide for this week's text, Hebrews 7.1-10, a truly fascinating passage in which we learn about our great high priest Jesus by engaging with a...

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Top 10 Reasons You Need to Go to the Women's Retreat

It's not too late to sign up for the 2011 women's retreat, Finding Freedom in God's Love! This year's retreat will be September 30th to October 2nd at Hilton Garden in beautiful Carlsbad!...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, August 14th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! Please note our financial update through July: Tithes and offerings continue to exceed our budget! Thank you for your faithful - and often...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, August 7th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! May it guide us in continuing to connect with God in worship, grow in faith and serve in love. See you tomorrow!...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, July 31st

Hi friends! Here's this week's e-Bulletin. Note especially our Vacation Bible School SonSurf Beach Bash kicks off Monday as well as Pastor Jim's upcoming class on Biblical Perspectives...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, July 24th

Hi friends, Happy Friday! I hope this finds you well. Here is this week's e-Bulletin! Don't miss out on some fun opportunities this weekend: Date Night / The Bug Guy Saturday night and the...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, July 17th

Hi friends, My humblest apologies! I neglected to post our weekly e-Bulletin Friday! Here it is! Note especially Date Night / The Bug Guy on Saturday night and the Pool Party at McGaugh...

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A Pixelated Life

Yesterday afternoon our Student Ministries Director Werner Ramirez, Student Ministries Intern Nicole Eggers and a number of high school students traveled up the hill to Summer Camp...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, July 10th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin. May it guide us in Connecting with God, Growing in Faith and Serving in Love. See you soon, Curtis...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, July 3rd

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! My apologies that it's only now being posted! Note a couple different growth opportunities that begin this week and that we are still in need of willing...

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Study Guide | The Letter to the Hebrews 4.11-13

Hi friends, Here's this week's Study Guide on Hebrews 4.11-13, a passage commonly referred to when discussing the authority of the Bible. But is that really what's going on?!...

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July/August Newsletter

Hi friends, Our July/August Newsletter is now available online! If you get a chance, send a note of thanks to our Deacon and bookkeeper Kristi Tinker for putting it all together!...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, June 26th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin. As always, it's also available via a shortcut on the front page of our website (see screenshot). See you Sunday as we continue our journey through...

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An Update from Jessica

Hi friends, Last week I was able to congratulate my friend, Good Shepherd member and former Student Ministries intern, Jessica Knutzen upon her graduation with a Master of Divinity...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, June 19th

Hi friends, Happy Friday! Here's this week's e-Bulletin. As always, it's filled with a number of ways to fulfill our mission: to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love. Note especially our...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, June 12th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! May it guide us in connecting with God, growing in faith and serving in love. Note especially the opportunity to serve alongside the SHIP program...

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Serve at SHIP!

Good Shepherd is welcoming SHIP (Self Help Interfaith Program) again this year from July 2 through July 15 and servants are needed to host 4 to 6 men (and possibly women) while they...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, June 5th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! May it guide you in connecting with God, growing in faith and serving in love! Note especially two growth opportunities this summer...

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Love Wins (Or Does It?)

Hi friends, You may have already heard about a new book entitled Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived. It's causing quite a stir, with some...

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Study Guide | The Letter to the Hebrews 3.1-6

Hi friends, Pastor Jim and Connie are on vacation this week, enjoying some time with family in Northern California. Please pray for rest, relaxation and rejuvenation! Before he left, Jim prepared...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, May 29th

Here's this week's e-Bulletin! As always, it contains a number of great opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love. One detail isn't included in our e-Bulletin about Tuesday...

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The Danger of the Christian Bubble

Hi friends, Last night at our monthly session meeting, the elders and pastors began a new study based on the book They Like Jesus, But Not the Church: Insights from Emerging Generations....

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, May 22nd

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin. As always, it features a number of opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love. Note especially our Campus Improvement...

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2011 Campus Improvement Project

Hi friends, I hope this finds you well! At the Congregational Meeting last night, all four motions were approved: We rescinded the 2008 building project and discontinue the “Generation to...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, May 15th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! As always, it can also be sent to your inbox or picked up Sunday morning in the Sanctuary and Zirbel Hall and during the week in the front office....

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, May 8th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! As always, it features a number of opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love. If you're able, please plan to attend the Called...

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May/June Newsletter

Hi friends, The May/June edition of the Shepherd's Voice is now available on the Newsletter page. Click on over to check it out! And while you're online, how about sending a note of thanks...

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Study Guide | The Letter to the Hebrews 1.6-14

Hi friends, Here is Pastor Jim's weekly study guide on this Sunday's passage, Hebrews 1.6-14. Keep Jim in your prayers this week as he attends the West Coast Presbyterian Pastor's...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, May 1st

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin. As always, it's filled with a number of opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love. Note especially our new series on the Letter to...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, April 24th

Hi friends! Here's our weekly e-Bulletin. If you're able, please remember to carpool tomorrow morning, to make room for the many who will be joining us to celebrate the Resurrection!...

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Celebrate Easter!

Ah yes, Easter. The one day out of the year children look for brightly colored plastic eggs filled with candy and lunch with the family is mandatory. And that's it. Or is it? Could there be more...

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e-Bulletin | Sunday, April 17th

Hi friends, Here's this week's e-Bulletin! As always, it's filled with a number of opportunities to connect with God, grow in faith and serve in love. If you'd like to submit an event to be included...

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In the Hands of the Potter

The Women’s Ministry spring luncheon, “In the Hands of the Potter” on Saturday, May 7th will feature guest speaker Carole Wolaver, The Pottery Lady. She will instruct and in inspire us to be...

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The Letter to the Hebrews

Hi friends, I hope this finds you well in this Lenten season, as we journey toward the Resurrection! I encourage you to be thinking about those you know who need to hear the good news...

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Be the Match

Hi friends, A bone marrow drive is being held for our very own eight year old Kai Quinonez on Saturday, March 26th at the corner of Pine and Florista in Los Alamitos from 11am to 3pm....

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Study Guide | The Gospel of Mark 14.66-72

Hi friends, Here is Pastor Jim's study guide for this Sunday, March 20th. We continue our journey through Mark, this week in 14.66-72. May it be a blessing to you as you seek to follow Jesus...

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From the Heart

Hi friends, This week's e-Bulletin noted that it's not too late to buy tickets and raffle tickets for an upcoming We Care fundraiser "From the Heart" next Saturday, March 12th at 6pm. Here's...

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Study Guide | The Gospel of Mark 14.26-52

Hi friends, We continue in the Gospel of Mark this Sunday at each of our gatherings, studying Mark 14.26-52, a difficult passage where Jesus is betrayed by one of his own and seized by a...

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Study Guide | The Gospel of Mark 14.12-25

Hi friends, Here's this week's study guide on Mark 14.12-25 for our continued study of the earliest written gospel account. This Sunday we will study Jesus' first celebration of communion with...

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Healing Prayer Seminar

Hi friends, I wanted to give you a heads up about a great opportunity coming up on Saturday, February 26th, from 9am to Noon in the Fireside Room. A healing prayer seminar will be led...

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A Simple Path

Tonight at an Open Table steering committee meeting, team member Leny Ambruso shared a brief excerpt from Mother Theresa's book A Simple Path that was too good not to pass on!...

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e-Bulletin

Hi friends, In an effort to conserve the resources of creation and more effectively communicate all the great things happening at Good Shepherd, we are moving forward with a new e-Bulletin...

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An Update from Matt & Michelle

Hi friends, I recently received this update from Michelle Swaney, who, with her husband Matt, ministers to college students through Campus Crusade for Christ. If you have any questions on how to...

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Study Guide | The Gospel of Mark 12.28-34

Hi friends, How goes it? I hope and pray this finds you well. We continue our journey through the Gospel of Mark this Sunday, seeing a fairly familiar exchange between Jesus and another...

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Study Guide | The Gospel of Mark 12.13-17

Hi friends, I hope and pray this finds you well. This week we return to our study of the Gospel of Mark, picking up on a fascinating passage wherein Jesus discusses our allegiance to earthly...

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Study Guide | When the Messiah Arrives: Isaiah 63.7-9

Hi friends, Here's Pastor Jim's study guide for our final Advent text for this Sunday, December 26th: Isaiah 63.7-9. Hope that it helps you grow in faith this Advent season! Grace and Peace....

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End of Year Financial Update

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ, we need your help! “Very Challenging” is the phrase that best describes our financial situation at Good Shepherd. Mindful of our calling to make...

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Christmas Eve Gatherings

As in years past, Good Shepherd is offering three different Christmas Eve gatherings this Friday night: Our 4pm Family Gathering is specifically designed for parents and their little ones...

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A Confession

In James 5.16 we are called to "confess our sins to each other." And, friends, I've got some confessing to do! Let me begin by stating what may be obvious: I love my job! I am so thrilled to be able...

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Family Advent Night

This Saturday, November 27th at 4pm is our annual Family Advent Night! All are welcome to this opportunity to share a soup dinner, sing Christmas carols led by Peggy Duquesnel Malbon...

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When the Messiah Arrives

Beginning this Sunday, November 28th at all three worship gatherings, we will be taking a break from our Gospel of Mark series to prepare for advent. The advent series, When the ...

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Canned Food Drive-Thru

You are invited to GSPC's Canned Food Drive Drive-thru on Thursday, November 18th from 5-7pm. The event will benefit Food Finders goal to raise 100,000 pounds of food. Canned...

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The Open Table Is A Hit!

Last night was the kick off for The Open Table, a brand new opportunity to gather together and share good food with great friends. And I think it's safe to say, "IT'S A HIT!" The Open Table...

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Heifer Sunday

This Sunday, November 14th, Good Shepherd will host a fair benefiting Heifer Project International, a non-profit agency whose mission is to work with communities to end hunger and...

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Keep Up With Rachel!

Hi friends, Kirk Brown, Elder for World Mission, recently alerted me to a wonderful opportunity to keep up with Rachel Falco: her personal blog at rachelfalco.theworldrace.org! As you may recall...

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November/December Newsletter

Hi friends, I wanted to let you know the Good Shepherd newsletter for November & December is now available! Previous months can also be viewed on the Newsletter page. Or, if you'd like to...

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Date Night

Next Saturday, November 6th, Family ministries is hosting a date night for parents! Childcare will be provided for your children - which includes pizza, games and movies - for only $15 per...

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Study Guide | The Gospel of Mark 11.1-11

Hi friends, I hope and pray this finds you well. Here is Pastor Jim's study guide on the passage for this Sunday's three gatherings. Usually referred to as Palm Sunday or the Triumphal...

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Local Mission Fair

On this Sunday, October 24th there will be a special opportunity in the life of our church: the Local Mission Fair! You are invited to come and learn how your giving is impacting our community and...

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Staff Bios

Did you know Associate Pastor Paul White wears a size 16 shoe? Or Student Ministries Director Werner Ramirez has a pacemaker? Or Children's Ministry Assistant Michelle Heath earned a...

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New Members Class

You're invited to a special opportunity to become a part of the Good Shepherd family of faith this Saturday, October 23rd. The bi-annual new members class offers a chance to learn more about...

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All Church Camp Out

Can you believe it... our All Church Camp Out starts tomorrow! We're looking forward to a great weekend of enjoying God's good creation with one another at the Canyon RV Park. And if you...

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Fall Dance for Those With Special Needs

This Friday, October 15th Good Shepherd is hosting a special opportunity to serve our community (and have a lot of fun at the same time!) at the bi-annual Fall Dance for those with special...

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Good News Club

Phil Swingle - husband to Elizabeth and dad to Eva and Elaina - has a great opportunity to serve the children of our community - and is looking for others to join him! As a teacher, he leads an...

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Honky Tonk Perfume

Good Shepherd's monthly Senior Adult luncheon was held today in Zirbel Hall. And if you think you know what goes on at these sort of events, you have no idea. Today, the special guest was...

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GSPC 2.0

Welcome to Good Shepherd's new home on the world wide web! This new site exists to serve the purpose of GSPC: to form disciples of Jesus Christ who connect with God, grow in faith and...

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