Spiritual Care at CCSM

Serving communion (photo: Chris Yeh)

One of the unique and beautiful qualities of this CCSM community is our tending to each other. On the Welcome page of our website we say: We are an open-minded, progressive spiritual community characterized by a delight in diversity, a passion for justice, a love of music and a genuine care we have for each other.

We do have a genuine care for each other and this is expressed in so many ways. Many of you are involved in the Companion Ministry, calling and visiting those with health and other challenges, and others volunteer to send the “Month of Sundays” cards and notes. These ministries enhance our collective presence with everyone, members and friends. Countless times during any given week, people reach out to one another, giving rides to the hospital or doctor’s appointments, sending sympathy or get well cards, or simply sending an email letting someone know they are praying for them.

Since September, all the ministers have been working together as a pastoral care team: instead of having one person be responsible for everyone, we all participate in the care of the congregation. Speaking for myself, this model of a pastoral team has worked well because I feel more involved in the life of everyone in the congregation—and, as we pray together on Mondays, we also decide who will reach out to what person to make sure everyone is cared for as well as possible. So we have expanded our Congregational Care as a responsibility of all clergy, rather than one designated minister. Additionally, we are asking office staff, specifically our Director of Operations (Marge Boyd), to take a more active role in ensuring that not only are the joys, concerns, and needs of our community quickly and efficiently communicated to Penny, Jorge, and Kibbie, but also that they are represented in publications such as the Bulletin and Pine Tree Newsletter according to your wishes and instructions. Our hope is that you will experience the love and care of a “cloud of witnesses” as we grow the circle wider with improved communication and networking.

Rev. Dakota Brown is returning from medical leave rested and ready to serve. She will be serving in a more specific capacity, focusing on visiting the homebound and providing senior programming. Dakota works 32 hours weekly as a hospice chaplain for another organization so she will only be able to spend a limited time serving CCSM.

You are always welcome to contact individual clergy directly if that is your preference. Additionally, within this model of a Congregational Care Team, you may also contact Marge with your message by phone or email (650-343-3694 Office; 971-235-2679 Cell; mboyd@ccsm-ucc.org) and she will connect you with on-call clergy as well as notify Penny. If your request involves the community, she will also ensure that it goes in our Joys and Concerns for prayerful attention.

We believe this model will deepen our beloved community on every level, as we care for one another and create together an environment where everyone is seen, heard and feels loved.