It is my great pleasure to welcome you to First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Olympia. I've given a great deal of thought as to what I might say as a way of introduction to this incredible faith community, and I keep coming back to the phrase we use on our outdoor sign: Open Minds, Compassionate Hearts, Welcoming ALL people.
Jesus shows through his actions that God's love is not exclusive. He broke all social conventions when he ate with tax collectors, prostitutes, outsiders, Pharisees and other religious leaders alike. He healed the sick, gave sight to the blind. He stood up to powers of oppression. As followers of Jesus we believe it is important to have:
Open Minds – We seek to be inclusive. We seek to make room for everyone in our midst. We are a diverse community. It is our willingness to recognize our differences and respect each person's voice that makes us strong. We seek to understand who God calls us to be both as a community and as individuals.
Compassionate Hearts – We care for each other and we care for our community. We have a strong tradition of community service. Partnering with community beyond our walls we join with others as we seek to be God's hands and feet in Olympia.
And because Jesus love and compassion was not limited we believe ours should not be either, therefore, as a community of faith in the Christian tradition we are:
Welcoming ALL People – everyone is welcome without reservation.
I am excited to be a part of a loving, growing, faithful community and it is without reservation that I extend an EXTRAVAGANT welcome to you!