The Rev. Wendy Pantoja
A couple of weeks ago, I walked into the office and was greeted by the busy chatter of congregants and staff conferring about various projects on which they were working. There were two or three groups of two or three folks each. The chatter was music to my ears—a song of beloved community in action behind the scenes.
It was wonderful to hear about the care they were taking and the attention they were giving to detail. And, of course, the smiles on their faces were infectious. I could feel the healthy heartbeat of our community.
Beloved community calls us to be in right relationship with each other and with the world. Often people’s minds go to social justice as it addresses the large issues of marginalization and oppression. Or, they think of covenants and other agreements made within congregations or by legislators. Yes, it is all that and more. Here is a recent example.
A few weeks ago, I was made aware of the difficulties some of our members were having in moving about our sanctuary. The side aisles were much too narrow for walkers and wheelchairs. Some of our doors were blocked by tables and chairs that did not seem to have a home when not in use. All of this was creating a physically unsafe and unattractive environment.
With this in mind, we have been experimenting with how to make our sanctuary safer and more accessible. You might have noticed that we created a single center aisle and wider side aisles. By skipping a row of chairs, we have also created a horizontal space that gives easy access to doors on both sides of the room. Stacks of unused chairs and folded up tables are no longer giving our sanctuary a cluttered look or hindering accessibility. An added benefit is that the more serene look is inspiring some members to think of ways to beautify our sanctuary even more as well as other spaces on our campus.
Beloved community looks at all aspects of our relationships with the purpose of making them more loving and compassionate. If you have ideas to this end, let us hear about it. Please bring them to our conversations, the suggestion box, and to our congregational gatherings.
En paz y fe,
Contact the Minister
Minister’s Office Hours
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday: 1 PM – 5 PM*
Monday: day off
Friday: Sermon writing day
Saturday: reserved for special meetings and other events
Please know that this schedule is subject to change in order to meet other ministerial and denominational responsibilities. It will also be revised over the course of the year in response to congregational needs.
Rev. Wendy is available by telephone 9 AM – 8 PM except on her days off. Emergency calls will be accepted at any time.
*It is always best to call for an appointment. If these hours do not accommodate your schedule, please do not hesitate to call for an appointment at a mutually convenient time.