Last week both Jayne and I had contacts that took us a bit by surprise. Jayne received a phone call from a young woman looking to find a spiritual director. She had googled Spiritual Direction, Santa Cruz and our Santa Cruz Fellowship website came up as an option. She clicked on the Spiritual Direction tab and read Jayne’s bio and the description of the practice and thought it was just what she was looking for in order to process what she is experiencing as a ‘seeming distance from God’.
I too received a phone call from a woman who wanted to connect with people who were volunteering at County jail, the prisons and the homeless. She too had googled those interests and the Santa Cruz Fellowship website popped up. She got my phone number from the website and called to talk about opportunities.
We originally developed the website as a way to stay connected with our ministry friends and donors but it has become a doorway to new relationships and contacts. We find that exciting.
Here are some of the things you will find there:
- The gospel passage for the week from the lectionary annotated with a picture and questions. It is the passage that I use each week with groups and keeps us centered on Jesus throughout the week.
- Reflections: Each time we send out a letter to our supporters and those interested in what we are doing in the community we post a copy of it on the website. Several people prefer to receive these reflections by email rather than by mail or to just check the website periodically to see what we are thinking about. If you are new to the ministry of Santa Cruz Fellowship, you can find past reflections there as well as the current one.
- Spiritual Direction: There is a tab on the menu bar that gives a description of the companioning ministry of Spiritual Direction and Spiritual Direction Supervision. Jayne has a brief bio and some questions to discern if spiritual direction is a practice that might be a good fit.
- Resources: There are descriptions of 3 of the spiritual practices that both Jayne and I have incorporated into our rhythm of life, Lectio Divina, Silent Prayer and the Prayer of Examen. These practices all date back to the early church with Lectio starting in the 6th century and the Prayer of Examen in the 16 century.
- Opportunities for Service: There is a description of the ministry at Santa Cruz County Jail and the Saint Francis Soup Kitchen and how you can get involved in these opportunities. Go to the Saint Francis Soup Kitchen Facebook page for a short video on the thoughts and reflections from the kitchen’s volunteers. They gave me a 15 second slot on my own view as a soup kitchen volunteer.
- Events: Upcoming events like the Women’s Reflective Retreats that Jayne has led at Mount Hermon since 1995. Also there will be links to upcoming men’s retreats once they begin again after Covid.
- Support: For those who feel called to support the ministries described above, there is a physical address where donations can be sent and a paypal link for those who want to contribute online.
- Family picture: We have just posted our latest family pictures taken when all of us gathered here in Mount Hermon after 17 months apart. These pictures include our 2 youngest grandchildren.
We hope and pray that you are having a Covid safe and blessed summer,
Rich and Jayne