FOUNDRY's Ministry - A View From the Other SideBy: Val Sachs
FOUNDRY Ministry Assistant
The title after my name tells you how I spend my time at FOUNDRY. My job is to help Rev. Christian DeMent minister to the community in Eastlake and Otay Ranch, specifically, those who call FOUNDRY their church home. In this position, I’ve seen first-hand that God engineers acts of service such that the one who serves benefits even more than those who are served. I have a wonderful job!
This summer, I have witnessed ministry from the “other side.” Successful spinal surgery in June rendered me unable to work for a month and unable to drive to FOUNDRY through mid-August. In addition to my altered schedule, Pastor Christian and other members of our ministry team had summer vacations and other plans that took them away from the pulpit, from the music team and the technical operations of Sunday morning worship.
The all-too-human side of me was concerned there might be gaps in FOUNDRY’s work. Would worship bulletins be done on time? How would Sunday morning music go? Would we have enough volunteers to serve the 200 families at the annual community campout in June? How would attendance be affected by having guest preachers? The list was long; and as you might have guessed by now -- the list of all the ways God provided is much longer! Just a few cases in point:
- As evidence that FOUNDRY members don’t just attend church -- they are the church; administrative tasks that often fall to staff, have been done by willing FOUNDRY attenders. Each week, bulletins have been created; worship attendance has been taken; offering monies have been properly deposited; bills have been paid; and worship slides and music have been seamlessly put forth on Sunday mornings.
- Many of those who have worked at the Montevalle Recreation Center’s annual Snores&S’mores campout in the past, were out of town this year. Our congregation typically helps set up the campsites, assists with tent building and serving dinner to more than 200 families. This year, new people from FOUNDRY showed up to help and we even had the assistance of a Boy Scout troop! Community members who needed assistance setting up camp or unloading cars, knew to look for someone in an orange FOUNDRY T-shirt and help was on its way.
- The first Sunday in July, FOUNDRY hosted a Jazz Brunch and Worship with the amazing music of Nate Jarrell and two other talented musicians. Knowing this would draw a large crowd and new visitors, Pastor Christian asked the FOUNDRY family to provide hospitality and food for the event. Within 24 hours, the response was complete and abundant! We filled three long tables in our Community Space with savory egg dishes, breakfast pastries and doughnuts and fresh fruit galore. It was a feast for all – and it was just the kind of “Extravagant Hospitality” that we strive to show anyone who walks through our doors.
- Guest preachers David Chang and Foothills’ own Music Director, Carol Paton shared sermons at FOUNDRY on two Sundays, when Pastor Christian was away. New families who have visited our congregation this summer have witnessed a Christian community that consistently offers prayer, support and the Good News of God’s love-- even when some of the faces making that offer may change! This unique way of surrounding each other with God’s love is why so many of our first-time visitors become regular attenders!
- The FOUNDRY music team is growing and evolving like never before. Under the direction of David Bramley, new musicians are joining our ranks and are eager to lead music on Sunday mornings. Part of the DNA of FOUNDRY worship is that music leaders aren’t performers; rather, their job is to gather others to join them in musical adoration to God. Guided by that philosophy, we now have several new vocalists, guitarists and pianists that are sharing their gifts with FOUNDRY on Sunday mornings. Many of those same musicians are excited to be planning a music therapy ministry for residents of a new senior housing complex that will be opening nearby in September.
Finally, on a personal note, I have seen ministry from the “other side” because so many people at FOUNDRY have taken care of me since my surgery. I’ve been prayed for, sent loving texts and fully supported by the ministers/members of the body at FOUNDRY. I don’t even live in their community and they have committed to three weeks of meals that they are delivering to me and my family in Rancho San Diego! Galatians 6:2 says, “Bear one another’s burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ.” My burdens are much lighter because my FOUNDRY family members so willingly seek to fulfill the law of Christ!