There is the another congregation that worships in our building each Sunday. They came to be at CGS out of a desperate need for a space to hold their worship. What started out as a home Bible Study between Kenyan immigrants bloomed into a worshipping congregation when they found plenty and safe space to gather. The size and demographic of that community has changed dramatically over the past 6 years as they have struggled to find a place to worship.
It’s difficult for us to understand a congregation that doesn’t look, sound, or operate like we do. Many people in this congregation work jobs that require their time on Sunday mornings. CCC most often meets in the Fireside Room but sometimes they have special events and need the space of the Great Hall in order to welcome all their worshippers. Their worship lasts multiple hours and their fellowship looks differently than ours.
Just this past year, Pastor Jared Oluoch was approved to be ordained in the ELCA. Hopefully, in the next couple of years, Pastor Norah will also be ordained in the ELCA. They began as a Swahili speaking congregation but many people who spoke English as a second language have been attracted to CCC and changed their mission to be an ESL (English as a Second Language) congregation. This year, they will enter the first step of becoming a congregation of the ELCA.
By hosting this congregation and being in relationship with the people of CCC, we are helping to birth a new congregation of our Church. Amazingly, it’s a very American story; people migrating to this valley for a new chapter of their lives and gathering together to let faith transform their lives. Language, ethnicity, socio-economic status, sexual orientation, these things are the details that make them a unique community but the essential identity is the same – beloved disciples of Christ.
This is the future of our Church: established communities of faith helping to bring about new communities of faith that look quite different from ourselves, ever expanding the expressions of the Body of Christ. To celebrate this, our two communities will worship together on February 10th. It will be an amalgamation of our different ways centered in the sacraments that claim us all. And it will be capped with a potluck to showcase the yummiest ways we nourish one another.
Save the date of February 10th in your calendar to come and see the abundance that God is making in this place!
Christ the Good Shepherd
Various editorials, articles, and other items of interest.