What direction should we go? Boil it all down to what counts the most. What is the essence of what you are trying to do, what is the most important thing? Things only get complicated when you are trying to address too many issues.
How do we build a life that is whole and healthy and happy? I've got something to say to you, and I hope you will listen with an open heart. Don't be so worried about what everybody else thinks of you, and don't think your happiness depends on someone else. I want you to trust yourself and to trust God. Trust that if you take care of yourself on the inside, follow your instincts, and let yourself evolve naturally, your potential for happiness will be so much greater. Don't be 'ordinary'. Look for those doors God is opening for you. Think outside of the box. BE EXTRAORDINARY! And God will be with you every step of the way.
And how do you become 'extraordinary'? You start by knowing deep down inside what a special person you are. And no matter what comes along, you never forget it. You stay strong. You keep the faith. And you make room for the brighter day that, someday soon, is going to shine so much peace and happiness back into your life.
Someone once wrote, you can make the next chapter of your life a wonderful one. Because you are the author of the story of your life.
Please join with us in worship this Sunday as I preach on "Be You. Be Extraordinary!" Our worship service begins at 10:30am. I look forward to seeing you.
~ Pastor Rick
The Hate Speech of Donald Trump
It has been with increasing alarm that I have watched the meteoritic rise of Donald Trump in opinion polls in the Republican Presidential race. In some states as many as 30% of eligible Republican voters support the candidacy of Mr. Trump. My question is this: Since when in this country have we approved hate speech in Presidential politics, or in public discourse for that matter? When have we as a people said that it is okay to call women fat pigs, dogs or ugly? When have we said it is okay to call Hispanic undocumented workers that cross the US border murderers, rapists and more? When has it become acceptable to make character assassination standard political practice?
When Donald Trump is confronted with someone who opposes him, he views it as an attack, and immediately retaliates not with facts, but with personal attacks that are aimed at destroying his opponents. These are the tactics not of a leader - but that of a bully. Calling into question John McCain's patriotism, calling Megyn Kelly a bimbo and worse has become part of his "schtick". When Donald Trump states that he "cherishes women", it reminds me of when slave owners would argue in favor of slavery because they took such good care of their slaves.
Donald Trump directly appeals to the worst fears of the American public of those who are "different" - the Chinese, Japanese, Mexican... It becomes "us vs. them". Where does this all end? Who is next on the list of those to hate and fear? Journalists? Gays? What minority group is next to face ridicule? Donald Trump appeals to those who can only feel better about themselves by hating another person, nation or creed.
We in the LGBT community know all too well the effects of hate speech. We are familiar with hatred and ridicule. We know all too well the type of bullying exemplified by Donald Trump. We get called fags, homos, queers, deviants, sinners, perverts and more. We've been denied employment because we are gay or lesbian or have been fired for such. There still are areas of our country where you can be denied housing if you are gay or lesbian.
We in the LGBT community have felt the pain of slanderous accusations that have no basis in fact. We have been murdered for being "different". And the hate speech of Donald Trump just adds legitimacy to such language and attitude. Words hurt. Words can destroy. Donald Trump knows that. If Donald Trump can get away with character assassination and calling people weak, bimbos, pigs, murderers, and dogs then it gives the green light for others to do the same. And that is the great and imminent danger of Donald Trump. He gives legitimacy to hatred.
It is high time for those of us who are leaders in the public arena, especially those of faith, to stand up and say enough is enough. Hate speech has no place in public discourse. Bullying has no place in American life. That is not what this republic is about. We may disagree with a position of another. But what makes us great as a nation is that we still respect that person even though we disagree with them. It's time to appeal to what is best and noble in this country and not the worst. We do not become that shining light on the mountain heights by tearing others down.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once wrote: "Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that." We need an America that is built on hope and not fear. We need public discussion of the important issues facing us that is based on mutual respect and not ridicule. And we need the powerful light of love to chase out the darkness of prejudice and hatred. Donald Trump says that his favorite book is the Bible. I would suggest he try reading it.
~ Rev. Rick Eisenlord, M.Div., Pastor Good Shepherd Church Pasadena
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We are so excited as work has begun on our "Extreme Church Makeover".
Demolition has begun...walls removed...flooring placed...landscaping begun... All is on schedule for our grand celebration on Sunday, September 20 when we have our 1st Mass at our new location! Stay tuned for further exciting details!
So When Is The Big Move?
We worship every Sunday at 10:30am.
Sunday August 30 - Worship services in Morrison Hall on the campus of Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1757 N. Lake Ave., Pasadena, CA
Sunday September 6 - Worship services in Morrison Hall on the campus of Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1757 N. Lake Ave., Pasadena, CA
Sunday September 13 - OUR LAST Worship service in Morrison Hall on the campus of Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1757 N. Lake Ave., Pasadena, CA
Sunday September 20 - 10:30am - Celebration Holy Mass in our new location at 1021 East Walnut, Pasadena, CA 91106. Champagne reception immediately following Mass.
1st Annual Church Picnic A Big Hit!
Despite temperatures reaching into the high 90's, the brave souls of Good Shepherd gathered last Sunday for 'fun in the sun'. Great food... wonderful fellowship. The pics are above. A big THANK YOU goes to all who made the day so special!
OVER 200 PEOPLE WATCHED US ONLINE THIS PAST SUNDAY! AND THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING!
This past Sunday 209 people watched our worship service live online! We are reaching people not only in Pasadena and the San Gabriel Valley - we are reaching people around the world!
Log into your Twitter account, then go to @GoodShepherdPas.
You will see a link (it may say 'Meerkat') If you do not see the link, hit the refresh button on your browser. Click on the link...and enjoy!
We now accept PayPal for online donations!
Contribute to the programs and mission of Good Shepherd Church Pasadena by using PayPal. Just click on the DONATE tab above. Thank you and God Bless!
For our new home we are going to need to purchase chairs, desks, tables and furnishings. You can help! May God Bless you for your donation!
A Free Gift For Your Online Donation!
For those who donate $25 or more to Good Shepherd on our website using the PayPal button, they will receive a free copy of the book "Life Without Limits" by Nick Vujicic. This is the amazing and inspiring story of a 27 year old young man born without limbs who did not let his disability hold him back. In his book he shares his experiences in dealing with adversity and obstacles with faith, hope, love and courage. This is a must-read for all those facing the trials of life!
Your generous financial contribution goes to the following programs:
World AIDS Day Celebration on Dec. 1
School supplies for children with HIV/AIDS
Men's Support/Social Group
Women's Support/Social Group
Easter Baskets to children who are physically and mentally challenged
Stuffed Christmas Stockings to physically and mentally challenged children
Outreach to LGBT high school students and GSA's
Annual Celebrating ALL Families Luncheon
LGBT Scholarships for continuing education
Good Shepherd Choir
Your contributions enable us to be the hands and feet of God to the LGBT Community. Thank you for whatever you can give. It is deeply appreciated. Thank You!
"My Gay Church" Podcast
Pastor Rick is now on iTunes with his brand new podcast "My Gay Church". The podcast series will highlight news, interviews and topics affecting the Christian LGBT Community.
Directions: Go to the iTunes store and head to the Podcast section. Click on the search box and enter: My Gay Church. You will then be directed to the podcast by Pastor Rick. BE SURE TO CLICK ON THE SUBSCRIBE BUTTON! Apple will then automatically notify you when new episodes of My Gay Church are available. But you need subscribe!
New podcast episodes will be broadcast every Tuesday. Be sure to catch all the fun! AND IT IS FREE!
Listen to Pastor Rick's Sermons Online!
After a brief break, we have started posting Pastor's sermons on line again. This is a great way to hear the sermon again, or hear it for the first time if you missed Mass. Just click on the "Sermons Online" tab above. Or you can just CLICK HERE. We hope the sermons inspire you and give you hope!
We worship every Sunday at 10:30am in Morrison Hall on the campus of Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1757 N. Lake Ave., Pasadena, CA.
Good Shepherd Women's Group Launches MeetUp Group
The women of Good Shepherd and friends have launched our very own MeetUp Group to plan fun summer activities.
Stay tuned for further details on upcoming activities. This group is open to all lesbians and their straight allies.
Donate Your Spare Change! Raising money for a cross.
Good Shepherd Church Pasadena does not have a proper processional cross. They are very expensive (around $1000). As our summer project, each Sunday we are giving away FREE piggy banks for you to put your pocket change in at the end of the day when you are at home. When your piggy bank is full, bring it to church with you.
We have an anonymous donor who will match dollar for dollar what we will raise! So dig deep! Empty those pockets! Our goal is to have all the money raised by Labor Day in September. Get your piggy bank this Sunday. Let's do this!
GoodShepherd Internet Project - Reaching OUT To the World!
We are very excited to announce plans to expand our presence on the internet. We are currently working on 6 major areas:
1. Social Media. We now have a presence on:
Tumbler (gd.shep.tekboy.com) and
2. MeetUp. The Good Shepherd Women have their own MeetUp Group happening. The link for that MeetUp Group is: http://www.meetup.com/Women-of-Good-Shepherd-Church-Pasadena/.
3. Live Streaming of the Good Shepherd Worship Service. Coming soon! Every Sunday you will be able to tune into the Good Shepherd Twitter account to watch a live stream of the Good Shepherd Mass.
4. iTunes Podcast.Pastor Rick is now on iTunes with his brand new podcast "My Gay Church". The podcast series will highlight news, interviews and topics affecting the Christian LGBT Community.
Directions: Go to the iTunes store and head to the Podcast section. Click on the search box and enter: My Gay Church. You will then be directed to the podcast by Pastor Rick. BE SURE TO CLICK ON THE SUBSCRIBE BUTTON! Apple will then automatically notify you when new episodes of My Gay Church are available. But you need subscribe! New podcast episodes will be broadcast every Tuesday. Be sure to catch all the fun! AND IT IS FREE!
5. Sermons Online/Good Shepherd Website. People can now go to GoodShepherdPasadena.com, click on the Sermons Online tab, and listen to Pastor Rick’s sermons! There is also information on the website concerning upcoming activities at Good Shepherd.
6. Email Blasts. Our email blasts go out to over 1000 individuals with the latest news and info on our activities.
Gay Parenting..."Y'all have 2 daddies? That's cool!"
I highly encourage you to watch a video of Kaleb Anthony and Kordale Lewis, pictured above. They are fathers with three children living in Geogia. The pair became internet celebrities after a photo of them helping their daughters get ready for school went viral on Instagram. Their family was featured in a Nikon commercial for the company's "I am generation image" campaign. Kordale published a book about their life together in 2014 called Picture Perfect. They want to get married as soon as it is recognized in Georgia.
In the video, they talk about the challenges of being gay fathers and raising kids in the South. To view this amazing video. CLICK HERE.
The Bible and Gay Marriage....
We worship in Morrison Hall on the campus of Westminster Presbyterian Church,
1757 N. Lake Ave., Pasadena, CA 91104
Click on the link below to get MapQuest Directions.
Good Shepherd Church Pasadena is an emerging welcoming congregation for all people, regardless of race, gender or sexual orientation. We believe in God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. We affirm that God loves and cherishes all His children, and has shown His love through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. We invite you to join us, regardless of your religious or denominational background.
An LGBT Church and so much more...
Our mission is to offer hope and inspiration to those who feel discouraged, who have been discriminated against or who are seeking spiritual fulfillment they are not getting elsewhere. We are God's hands and feet in a world desperately searching for hope and guidance. The Good Shepherd knows His flock and loves us fully. You are deeply cherished for who you are, gay, straight, bi-sexual, lesbian or transgendered. The Good Shepherd wants you. We want you! Please join us, won't you?
Click on the icons below to follow Good Shepherd on Facebook (Good Shepherd Church Pasadena) and Twitter (@GoodShepherdPas).