A Good and Faithful Servant

On Sunday evening we lost one of our dear servants, Jim Swenson. Maybe “lost” is the wrong word to use. For Jim is certainly not lost to God or to us. Jim has entered into the Divine Mystery of God. Well done good and faithful servant. And Jim was a good and faithful servant, whether giving leadership to our endowment funds, serving on the Leadership Council, making weekly runs to the Food Bank for the Neighborhood Services Center, or serving in the Kairos prison ministry. This is just the last few years. His whole life was defined by service. 
  Jim died peacefully after a yearlong struggle with cancer. We will gather on Saturday, April 20, at 3:00 PM to celebrate a life well lived. Let’s give Ann our love and support and prayers. If you would like to honor Jim, memorial gifts can be given to any of these favorites of Jim — The First United Methodist Church Endowment Fund, The First United Methodist Church — Neighborhood Services Center (NSC) or Kairos Prison Ministry. 
  In life, in death, in life beyond death, we are not alone, God is with us. Thanks be to God!  

A Powerful Experience of Grace

“Kairos” is a Greek word meaning God’s special time. It is the name of the ministry that goes into prisons with a short course on Christianity. The message of God’s unconditional love in Jesus Christ. Paul Aschenbrenner calls Kairos a front row seat on a miracle. It was my honor and privilege to be part of the team to put on a Kairos in Salinas Valley State Prison last weekend. There were 36 inmates in attendance. It was a beautiful experience. God’s spirit was in that place and many were touched by the experience. Many of you kept us in prayer. Thank you. You are a part of a very powerful ministry. Now the inmates who had a powerful experience of grace will be encouraged to follow up by being in prayer and share groups with each other. This is life changing stuff! This could be prison changing stuff! Thanks be to God!
This Sunday we will focus on two wonderful passages of scripture that speak to our ministry in prison and here at First UMC Salinas and our Neighborhood Services Center. They also speak to each one of us individually. Take a look ahead at 2 Corinthians 5: 16 – 21, and Luke 15: 1 – 3, 11 – 32. See you in worship. 

Pastor Steve Lundin