April 15, 2021
Greetings. I am Rev. Joey Olson. I retired from the Port Angeles UMC in 2014 and have been a part of Trinity since then. I will be filling in for Pastor Brad until he returns. I have served churches in Texas, Ocean Shores, Mill Creek, and as District Superintendent for the Inland District. My husband Ole and I in our blended family have two daughters and two sons along with nine grandchildren. I enjoy reading, hiking, kayaking, and traveling. Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Along with you, I continue to pray for Pastor Brad and Dorothy for deep and abiding healing, that they experience the love of God as they take this time away.
Weekly Wonderings…Joey Olson’s Devotional
In the hymn “We Are The Church” the congregation sings “The church is not a building, the church is not a steeple, the church is not a resting place, the church is a people.” During the past year of isolation, illness, even death many have felt bereft that they could not worship in the sanctuary. If the church were only the building, we would all be in trouble.
In several ways, our church has demonstrated that the church can be many things, from online services to our church parking lot. From our parking lot services to the incredible ministry in coordination with Jamestown, Fire District 3, community leaders, and TUMC, the church parking lot became a source of hope for a community fearful of the COVID virus and the need for vaccination. The Sequim Chamber of Commerce acknowledged this with the February award for Business of the Month.
I am including notes from Jim Stoffer and Jan Kreider about their assessment of the ministry. They both embody the leadership of so many with humor, compassion, and a lot of strategic planning.
- 19th January – kickoff day, brought folks camping out overnight along Washington and Blake. Church opened the Parking Lots and their Doors to get folks off of Blake into a somewhat more welcoming location. We formed a Team of Traffic/Parking Directors, some spent the night, some early in the morning, 3 am 😊. Some cold mornings walking out along Blake and Washington checking on folks. We were out there just as the USPS delivering Mail – Rain, Sleet, Hail, Snow, Dust Storm, Wind, Ice – Good Times😊 but with a smile.
- We warmed up in the CERT Emergency Vehicle and Public Works Vehicle as we directed traffic. 1st few days, week one and two were somewhat problematic seeking a safe solution and improving the processes. Pastor Brad, camping out in the Church and then out greeting and welcoming people, along with fresh coffee. Other folks dropped off snacks of gratitude and appreciation.
- Traffic/Parking and CERT purchased Traffic wands and Flags, extra radios, and additional vests. Additional volunteers came forth (THANK YOU)
- We learned Radio/Comms Procedures
- We learned how to work through some negativity out there directing traffic.
- If my memory is correct – there were only minor fender bumps, and nothing major.
- We all have survived with all our toes and fingers – but with sore feet and backs.
- Assisted several vehicles with dead batteries.
- Wondered several times about – should that person be driving?😊
- Process improved with the start of the appointment system and continues to this day.
- We all consumed an untold number of Box Lunches 😊 Thank You Jamestown!
- We all grew as a team in community and friendship – We kept each other safe out there along Blake and in the Lots.
- 6 Parking Cones gave their all for the cause😊
- We very much appreciate the Fellowship Hall Hospitality where the church volunteers monitored snacks and coffee for the “outside” volunteers at break time. Sign-in hospitality handled names and phone numbers for contact tracing. Folks came forward to serve coffee outside. A special thanks to Marian Needham (TUMC’s office manager) who fielded an untold number of phone calls regarding the clinic hours and operations. We appreciated the doctors, nurses, and many, many volunteers.
My prior work instilled an ethos of doing good in your community and being that small nucleus of dedicated folks providing comfort, security, and compassion to those around you. Well, friends, you are that small nucleus, who when we look back a few years from now, can truly say – We saved Our Sequim.
Update on Pastor Brad
Pastor Brad emailed Pastor Joey Olson and me to let us know his condition and plans to return. Pastor Brad met with his cardiologist last week and was told his heart is better than fine. His doctor called his recovery a miracle. There was no damage to his heart and all the heart markers are above normal and his blood pressure is also normal. He is still very fatigued and is adjusting to his medications. Please continue to pray for healing. Pastor Brad is confident he will be able to return by Mother’s Day.
Some Concerns that we have:
- Pastor Brad and Dorothy for healing following Pastor Brad’s heart attack.
- For those who continue to go through physical struggles, those who are dealing with cancer, or other health situations. Prayers for those who are emotionally feeling lost and alone.
- For all those who are ill from the COVID-19 virus; for those families who have lost loved ones to the virus; for all the first responders/essential workers; and for those who are nervous about getting shots.
- For peace in our country.
- For smooth delivery of the vaccine. And please pray for all of the volunteers.
- For Katherine Parker, missionary to Nepal.