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Our Mission

Led by the Holy Spirit, SCF is committed to being a visible presence of Christian love and unity, growing in faith in our Lord and savior Jesus Christ and witnessing this faith through service to the needs of the community and the world.

Worship & Office Info

Services held each Sunday
at 10:00 a.m. at the:

Holy Trinity Catholic Church
18143 Cottonwood Road
Sunriver, OR 97707
Contact a Pastor:
Office: 541-593-1183

Days: Mon,Tues,Wed & Fri
Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

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Pastor's Letter

November -- 2017


 Dear Family,

Whenever November rolls around and Thanksgiving is just around the corner, I play a song originally recorded by Art Garfunkel called “Grateful.” It was given to Carolyn and myself many years ago by Madeleine Fraley for Carolyn to sing, which she has done numerous time over the years. It is not a particularly religious song, but its words are charged with spiritual insight. No matter how often I play and replay it, its reflections bring me to tears as if hearing it for the first time.

Though our habit should be a 12-month expression of gratefulness, it seems to take a national holiday to serve as a reminder to pause, reflect, and, either out loud or in the quiet of our hearts, express our gratitude to God for His bountiful blessings. Here is but a small list of my “gratefulnesses”:

  • --For a God who is ever present and doesn’t give up on me.
  • --For a wife of 45 years who stands by me, loves. . . in spite of me, and is the greatest mother our sons could ever have hoped for.
  • --For 3 sons who stand on their own feet, love their wives and families well, and serve skillfully and effectively both those who work for them or are served by their professional capabilities.
  • --For 3 outstanding daughter-in-laws, beautiful both outwardly and inwardly, who provide lov­ing, nurturing support and guidance to their children, and faithful companionship to their husbands.
  • --For 7 uniquely created grandchildren, active, curious, rambunctious, and ever amazing and delighting to their grandparents.
  • --For a church family that exemplifies the love of Jesus to each other, this community, the broad­er world, and particularly, to Nancy and myself.
  • --For over 40 years of pastoral and educational opportunities that have flown by so quickly

This past weekend, a different way to look at grateful­ness came my way. I attended two memorial services. The first for Leah Cain here in Sunriver, the second, later that same day in Bend, for a young man who had recently died from a brain tumor at the age of 42. His name was Chris. He had been a member, along with his family, of the Com­munity Church in Sunriver during his teenage years when I served there. It was only last spring that he had received the disheartening diagnosis of a brain tumor and given just 6 months to live. At his memorial service, several who had walked alongside Chris and his family during his final months each bore witness that in spite of this disease and difficult days, his commitment to Jesus and his love for family and friends only deepened, making lasting impacts on those who crossed his path during that time. I forgot to mention that I had officiated at Chris and his wife Sarah’s wedding in Portland while he was attending Multnomah Bible College. They would have been mar­ried 17 years this coming December.

A slide presentation with carefully selected back­ground music was included as part of the service. Though many of the pictures brought flashback memo­ries of Chris, I was inwardly impacted by the first back­ground song selected called “Hallelujahs.” The verses capture a breadth of images, many times overwhelming in their scope of God, each leading to this chorus of praise:

O praise Him all His mighty works.

There is no language where You can’t be heard.

Your song goes out to all the earth.

Hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah!

As much as I believe those words, I couldn’t help but compare how different a spirit of gratefulness might be for Chris than my own. Because he was the same age as my oldest son, I wondered what inner battles he wrestled with, in particular, knowing he would not be present to experience those joys of watching his chil-dren’s development in the next few years, not to men­tion other losses. Yet, as shared by those who knew him intimately during the service, Chris was resolved to fo­cus on what was soon to come, knowing that someday he and all those he loved would be reunited in the pres­ence of Jesus. And for this, and for whatever length of days he had lived, he was grateful.

I was reminded again that gratefulness is always a choice - both how we look at life circumstances, and then, determining our response to them. Let me end with the closing words of the song “Grateful” which cap­tures a bit of this attitude.

In a world that can bring pain,
I will still take each chance.
For I believe that whatever the terrain,
our feet can learn to dance.
Whatever stone life may sling,
we can moan or we can sing.
Grateful, grateful, truly grateful I am.
Grateful, grateful, truly blessed and duly grateful.