Friday, August 17, 2007

The End of the Road...For Now

It's been a while since I wrote something here...I don't even know if anyone reads this...

Back in June, the decision was made to close Community of Grace. We had tried hard to get people interested in the church, but many who were first associated with us moved on, and after several years of trying to get people interested in coming, Dan (our music guy) and I were just plain tired. It's a community that makes a church, and well, there weren't that many people interested.

We had tried everything to get the message out that we were around and tried to get local churches involved, but nothing really worked, so we decided to let this dream die.

My feelings over the last few months have ranged from relief to anger, to loss and sadness. I wish I had done things differently. I wish other churches in the area cared more. I wish we could have found that core group. I wish, I wish.

But even though this didn't work, I can say that Community of Grace made a difference in someone's life. I met my friend Jim a few years ago through Log Cabin Republicans, a GLBT group. I had invited him to Community of Grace and he came and became a vital part of the church. For a long time, Jim didn't feel welcomed in the Episcopal and Catholic churches of his youth because he is gay. But he did feel welcomed at Community of Grace. He is now back in the church.
Jim accepted a new job in San Diego and one of the first things he asked me was if he knew of any Disciple churches out there. I gave him a few contacts. Community of Grace might not have succeeded as a congregation, but it did bring one person closer to God. One person heard the message that God loves everyone-no exceptions and that is mind blowing.

I have no idea what I will do now. I am looking at an opening in a UCC church and I am doing some supply preaching at other churches. I do know that I want to do parish ministry in some form. I also know that there is a part of me that still wants to do a new church. Who knows, maybe something will happen that will get me back in the saddle to start a church. Maybe there is a church in the Twin Cities that is will to do some sort of outreach ministry. I'm just waiting to see what God has in store for me.

Please keep me in your prayers as I try to search where God is leading me. Feel free to drop me a line at If you know of anyone interested in doing some new ministry or here in Minnesota, let me know.


Dennis Sanders