Sunday Worship, 10 am

Bible Study, 9 am

Contact Us

Phone: (909) 622-1144

Fax: (909) 622-5771

Email: fcc@fccpomona.org

1751 N. Park Ave
Pomona, CA 91768

Office Hours
Monday: 9am – 2pm
Tuesday: 9am – 2pm
Wednesday: 9am-2pm
Thursday: CLOSED
Friday: 9am – 2pm

If you'd like to meet someone before you walk through that door the first time, just give us a call or send us an email.

We'll arrange for one or two of our members have coffee or something with you and give you a chance to get to know someone, so you won’t be by yourself for your first visit.

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Pastor’s Blog

Julie’s Jar

doveDisappointment is part of life. Learning to deal with disappointment is part of how we develop wisdom and maturity. It was a disappointment that Werner Tillinger could not be with us for the retreat and Sunday worship, due to the flu. In dealing with that disappointment, I discovered something of the Spirit.

Werner, Mike and I had collaborated about the weekend over many weeks. We talked and then left space for God to be part of the deliberation. We planned and then allowed God room in between the planning to step in.

When we knew Werner would not be able to join us, we began making adjustments. Mike would preach. I would fill in other spaces, etc. We chose to not make adjustments to all the prayerful preparation and let the scriptures, songs, and stuff of worship stand. We all stepped into a space of grace on Sunday that was prepared before we got there, not only by us, but by the Spirit of God.

There were certainly last-minute adjustments, but I was reminded once again that when the people of God prepare in cooperation with God, there is a bigger container in which God can show up. It seemed to me that God showed up and spoke into that container with words of encouragement and hope through scripture and sermon. God showed up and sang into our hearts in the beauty of music and sacred silence.

Disappointments leave us vulnerable. Vulnerability leaves us open. When we prepare our lives to be places and moments of meeting God, God will show up, especially in our vulnerability.

Julie’s Jar “What Makes Us Great”

~What Makes Us Great?~

“Great job,” we tell someone when we like or approve of something they’ve done. “He’s a great man,” we say of a man who has wielded power for the benefit of other people. “Great” was also an adjective used to describe the nemesis of Harry Potter: Voldemort. Voldemort was described as great; he did terrible things but great things, big things, consequential things.thumbs up

Being great at something can be consequential in ways that help and in ways that hurt. What makes us great? According to Psalm 18, we are made great by God’s care. To acknowledge our greatness in such a way requires us to recognize our utter dependence and reliance on God. This takes humility: knowing we are never self-made.

God provides us with an object lesson in the birth of a baby. Even the essence of God comes into human life utterly dependent on the care of other people. Jesus, we believe, is God’s love incarnate for the world. This love is unreservedly reliant on the care of people whose only power is to love. The care of Mary and Joseph, the care of community from the shepherds, wise men and a faith community in which Jesus will grow, this is what makes Jesus great; this is what makes God’s love great.

Together with God, we birth love incarnate into the world. God is made great by this care we give and we are made great by the care we allow God to give us, even the care through other people. It takes humility to be great. All you have to do is look at the manger to know this is true.

Julie’s Jar “Getting Ready”

~Getting Ready~

There is a lot of getting ready going on. In addition to everything else going on in our lives: work, doctor’s appointments, exercise, class, finals, looking for work, grieving, running errands, going to holiday concerts and programs, cleaning, etc., etc., etc., we are getting ready for Christmas. There is a lot of getting ready going on: decorating, writing cards, getting gifts to give, baking, more cleaning, etc., etc., etc.

Sometimes, this getting ready helps us better anticipate the Christmas that is coming, the light that is coming into the world again and again. Sometimes, this external getting ready becomespresents another task to complete with little benefit to our spiritual well-being.

Consider this; how can I more fully prepare my soul, my heart, my spirit, to fully receive the gift that God gives to me and the world every Christmas? Consider how you might attend more mindfully and heartfully to the tasks at hand, pondering the presence of the sacred in each activity. Consider seeking something (an activity or a time of quiet) that genuinely softens your soul to be more receptive to the deep and abiding love God wants you to receive.

The gift of God’s unconditional love is amazing and even overwhelming when we are open and receptive to accepting it. The gift transforms us into more loving people. Jesus came into the world to invite us to follow him on this way. As we grow up in Christ, we become more capable of unconditional love ourselves. Surely, this is a project worth being part of.

Julie’s Jar & Mike’s Left-Hand Remark

Julie’s Jar & Mike’s Left-Hand Remark

Giving Thanks and Looking Forward

First Christian Church of Pomona is a community that continues to find ways to express the hospitality of Christ. You as members of this faith community offer a warm, genuine welcome to everyone who comes through the doors AND you extend Christ’s welcome beyond the doors of the church in so many ways. This Holy Hospitality is a strength and gift we have from God. It is this Holy Hospitality we propose be our collective frame for 2018.

There are a number of ways we are doing this already and new ministries we might consider through this hospitality framework. Let us continue to:

  1. Provide initial hospitality to visitors as guided by our Hospitality Group AND to reach out in specific ways to assist children returning to school and families in need during the holidays.
  2. Bring the hospitality of Christ’s table to homebound and ill members of the congregation. Pastors and Elders currently provide this and members of the Diaconate are interested in serving in this way.
  3. Participate in ICON, continuing our work to hold space for deep conversations about shared concerns and shared values with others as we work to bring relief to people suffering as a result of the current housing crisis. In 2018 we will be working to support the full funding of the Neighborhood Service Center for Homeless, due to be constructed by March 2018 and work with local cities to increase housing.

 

Let’s begin to prepare to be a mission center. It is not a matter of if; it is a matter of when the next big earthquake will come. How can we prepare to be a place and people of hospitality in time of natural disaster? Our close proximity to Pomona Valley Hospital means our facility will be used in a natural disaster. Already, Mike Fronk and Chris Abbott are scheduled to meet with a representative of PVHMC who works with FEMA. Additionally, our school is a place where people may likely gather. Let us make 2018 the year we begin preparing our facility and our congregation to be a place of hospitality, a mission center, in response to a natural disaster. There are people in our congregation with the gifts and skills to guide us and implement what is needed to prepare. Offer short term hands on mission work that extends the hospitality of our congregation into the community. It is a challenge to work people in to a volunteer opportunity to meet their need to feel helpful, but it is an opportunity to connect them to a wider ministry. We hope there could be 4 such events in the year. One possibility is a workday at the farm/garden where fresh vegetables are grown for Hope Partners food banks.

Do you see yourself in any of these expressions of Holy Hospitality? Can you imagine your hands, feet, heart and imagination being part of some of these expressions of Christ’s hands and feet? We trust you do and invite you to let God lead you into expressing the welcome of Christ through one or more of these ministries.

Julie’s Jar, “Tradition”

Tradition…

Thanksgiving is filled and fraught with tradition. When you think of the traditions of Thanksgiving that were part of your life 20, 30, 50 years ago, what has changed and what has stayed constant? The people change as loved ones and friends come in and out of our lives through death, birth and moving. Even the food may have changed for some as families blend and bring their special dishes.

The changing of our cherished traditions can be disruptive. “It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without….” Fill in the blank. Our Thanksgiving celebration has changed over the years. We’ve hosted only once, camped a lot and been to my Dad’s and his wife, Marilyn’s. There’s always turkey, pumpkin pie, mashed potatoes, green beans prepared in a variety of ways, etc. The constant is gathering over a long meal that takes a lot of prep and a long time to clean up with people we don’t often get to see.

Churches in our country remember Thanksgiving each year, not because it’s a holy day in our calendar, but because it is a holy reminder that we are called to live from a place of gratitude. Thanksgiving resonates with our conviction that all we have and are is gift from a generous Creator.

Congregations across our country are facing disruption, regardless if they are seen as traditional or contemporary in their worship style. The practice of gathering with people over the sacred meal of communion is more and more an anachronism, a relic for many people. Regardless of the traditions around which we gather at Christ’s table, the constant we share is the welcome of God in Christ, the hospitality we experience through the grace of God. It is a constant worth keeping and worth sharing with people who still do not know how deeply and richly they are loved. It is a constant worth keeping and sharing so people can come home to their true home in God.