I Love Fall

Today is the first day of fall. Here is why I love this season:
1. I actually don’t mind the rain and I love cold/sunny days
2. I love the colors of fall – I am already seeing tree leaves start to change
3. It’s about the only time of year where I love to buy a new pair of shoes
4. This may sound morbid but, I like the idea of old things dying, going through a winter and then new life. Fall is the beginning of letting some necessary things begin the cycle of death to make room for the new life that wants to emerge.
5. My birthday is in October:)
6. The kids are back in school and there is again a semblance of order.
7. This is my favorite season for cooking and having folks over to share a meal – lots of roasted meats with root vegetables and red wine.
8. While I am not much for Halloween, I love the Thanksgiving holiday. Not in the respect of what we are celebrating but more in how we choose to celebrate it with family and reflecting on all that we have to be thankful for.
9. The smells of fall
10. Even though I am not interested in sports, there is something about the football season and the world series that I like. Mind you I don’t watch them, but I catch the excitement from my husband and my kids and somehow I vicariously experience the season without really entering it.
That’s about it…

The Great Emergence

Just started reading Phyllis Tickle’s latest book, The Great Emergence. Another must read for anyone wanting to understand the back drop for where the Christian church in North America currently finds herself and where we are more than likely heading.

Brian McLaren and Hope

Check out this new video Brian did on Hope here
Short and to the point. When he talks about the Muslims in the first part of the video it made me think, this is exactly why the youth initiative TNT is an important experience for young people to learn about and from one another.

The Born Again Church Tour

OTM 08 Banner I am looking forward to the annual OTM party! That’s what usually happens. You will have a bunch of fun getting to know tons of interesting people, stories that stretch your thinking about God, Church, Christianity, the Culture and this year will not be a disappointment. Check out the website for Seattle’s event…and keep checking because they will be adding more daily!

Did you know:

“Younger adults and those Americans who live in the Western part of the United States are much less likely to believe in God than are those living elsewhere…

The highest number of atheists and agnostics live in the western USA… One quarter of western U.S. adults claim no religious affiliation” (Pew & Gallup, 2008)

This startling statistic tells us why we need to focus on reaching young people with the message of Jesus

We happen to live in the section of the nation with the largest number of unreached young people

Not only that – this number is growing – non believers are the fastest growing faith segment in the US

And some of them are coming right out of our churches

We need to turn this around

Come to The Born Again Church Tour in Seattle October 10-11

Hundreds of people like you have already signed up because they believe that the church can be better – the kingdom can be expanded and young people can find a spiritual home as followers of Jesus.

Learn how at The Born Again Church Tour in Seattle October 10-11
Get your tickets (Groups only $79)

Prayer for Max

Hey everyone,
Could you hold 4-year old Max in prayer the next few days? He has contracted ecoli, has been in the hospital for days and is not doing well. They discovered it has gone into one of his kidneys and his liver. He is being transferred to Children’s Hospital today. Please pray for healing, strength and that he will not have kidney failure.

Max is the grandson of our good, good friends, JR and Nancy. Please keep them all in your prayers as this has been an exhausting week. Thank you.

Oprah Called Today

Well not exactly Oprah but a producer from her show. Remember the story of my friend Jessica singing with Sting in July? If not go here and here. I emailed the Oprah show a lot to tell them this would be a great story on so many levels…fairytale come true…Jess is a good, good person, Unitus is involved, is has all the makings of an Oprah segment right?

Well this morning I got a call from one of Oprah’s producers wanting to know more about the back story and wanted contact info for Jess. Jessica talked with them, they opened a file on her because they like the story. So here’s what needs to happen next, we need as many people as possible to email the Oprah show at the link below (it will only take you a few minutes) and in the message section put: Jessica Ketola and Sting – please bring Jessica on to tell the story…then copy and paste the link to Jessica’s myspace account which is http://www.myspace.com/ketolajessica

To get an email to Oprah go here

and let’s get Jessica on Oprah!

Speaking of Young People

Turning Point, (a mission group of VCC) gets press in the local paper. Our youth initiatives are designed to provide fun, safe space for kids during OST (out of school time). Young people learning to be with each other when they come from diverse ethic, religious, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds is vital for today’s world. If the newspaper link does not work copy and paste this to your browser:


Does God Speak Through Culture?

As I watched/watch the Conventions I am struck with so many issues. If God speaks through culture how are we discerning what we are seeing unfold in our current history-making elections? I have noticed many things that we (the church) could “notice” and wonder about. I will mention one thing and that is how many of the speeches and interviews with folks from the Kennedy’s, Clinton’s and Obama’s to the Bush’s and McCain’s, (and everyone else in between) always, always, always mention how their parents instilled in them a profound sense of no matter how privileged they were they must, must, must serve others. I have been struck with this notion for weeks now and am asking myself first, as a parent how I continue to raise my young son with this value and secondly, as a pastor how to create an environment within our faith community to instill this value in young people.