I am welcoming springtime this year with extra enthusiasm. The dark, long, wet, gray of the Pacific Northwest is a particular challenge for me as a Coloradan used to more sun. And there is more to celebrate than the amazing blossoms and return of more sunshine to Eugene.

There is a springtime happening in the life of this congregation. Signs of life.

There are signs of life everywhere I look at FCC. Take a deep breath, it’s a long list! There are numerous small spiritual growth groups, increased building use from the community, a significant investment underway in our worship space audio and video broadcast, positive trends in financial giving, almost 30 new members in the last year, renewed worship attendance and energy, significant Wednesday Night Connections attendees, newly trained and active pastoral care volunteers, well attended youth programs and events (largest in our Conference), giving out of thousands of dollars to area youth for summer camps, new Open and Affirming seminars, the return of All Church Camp this August, the maturing of our finance team’s activities, bylaw changes, a newly active elder council, significant adult education attendance, and facilities assessments, planning, and repair for now and improvements for the future. We also have an active and energized Pastoral Search Team ready to post the new church profile this month for ministers nationwide to view.

Even with all that, I’m sure I’ve left something out. As hoped, these are not all directed by the Senior Minister. The people of the FCC in Eugene are dreaming, visioning, meeting, planning, and doing. The Spirit is moving in the people to lead and share and collaborate. It was moving before I arrived and has only gained momentum since.

We celebrate Pentecost this month (Sunday the 19th, wear red). It is a timely reminder that the Spirit comes in many forms and can speak in many ways. It is my hope and prayer that all of the signs of Life I see at FCC will bear the fruits of Love and service to Life.

We continue the journey of faith that was begun by the founders of FCC, 135 years ago as of this June 2, and begun by others before them. In this springtime of FCC life, God’s story continues to be written through us as we respond to the movement of Spirit and co-create the Way of Love here and now.

Pastor JT