Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Father Jake Stops Nevada!

Fr. Jake     Premier Episcopal blogger Father Jake attended our Diocesan convention at Lake Tahoe last week. It was exciting to finally meet him in person! As he told the story of his own journey through an almost impossible childhood and youth into faith and service, there was a profound stillness in the large convention room. I found myself wanting to reach into the past to the boy he was and tell him everything was going to be alright. He brought closure to the past by speaking of how he found the blessing in what he had gone through. A very wise friend once told me that healing begins when we can find the gift in pain we have experienced.

     The part of his message I am still pondering is when he said all our efforts at attracting people into the Church such as improved signage, advertising, visitor-friendly bulletins, etc., are mainly for those who already have some kind of a church experience in their background. He pointed out many children are being raised by parents who themselves have had no contact with even the simplest stories of the Christian tradition, such as Noah and the Flood. In reaching out to them, his recommendation was simple: Tell your story.

     In sharing his own story of what God had done for him, he drew us in. Given the choice between “show and tell,” Fr. Jake didn’t just tell us about faith, he showed us by taking us back through his own life. His challenge to us was to go and share ours. How simple. No focus groups or mass media buys – just go and tell your own story of what God has done for you.

     If you have not had the pleasure of being a regular reader of Fr. Jake’s blog, I highly recommend it. You can find it here: Father Jake Stops the World.
Lake Tahoe at sunrise.


  1. How wonderful that you got to hear his story from him.

  2. Me too. I´ve always had the sense that I knew/know Fr. Jake (who is really Fr. Terry which adds to the dimension of our religious reality)...quite often I see him as a boy sitting on his stool, away from the family because he was thought ¨contagious¨ by a stepmother (who in fact was probably inflicting emotional/spiritual instability on others)...then it´s easy for me to progress with him and his life experience because I identify...I absolutely love the stark truth of knowing the ¨rest of the story¨ because, it helps me realize the endless possibilities of healing and growth that the God provides for me and countless others!

    Nice to meet you Rick! Love Tahoe, I had a ¨show¨ of my Art there a little over a decade ago...lovely setting...I remember a little Episcopal Church set back away from the road in Tahoe City...neat!

  3. Rick,
    Had a chance recently to meet him here in DioSJ. What an engaging individual. And, you are correct, not only is he the premier blogger but he spawned a host of blogs all over the world! Blessings on Nevada and Father Jake!

  4. I've met Terry a few times myself. What a pleasure! You were blessed to have him at your convention. I think he's right about the future of the church.

  5. Good for you Rick+! I enjoyed meeting Fr. Terry this summer.

    What with all the snow stories we on the right coast are hearing about 'out west' --did you get any snow during your convention?

  6. Thanks for this, Rick.

    I'm still pondering how the Episcopal Church's newly-hired, instantly-laid-off Evangelism Director has the courage to keep telling the story, even in Nevada, when it would be so much easier to just go home and lick his wounds.

    I take it God knew what he was doing when he met Terry.

  7. Dear Margaret,

         We only got a dusting of snow here in the valley. I was out raking leaves today. Still, it's on its way!


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