But This is 1976!

Our next snapshot from the past is another article written by Pastor Miller for Outreach, this one published in the May, 1976 edition. In this article, Pastor Miller recounted the hardships our church faced in 1975. Such hardship led the congregation to a renewed commitment to prayer. Pastor Miller then joyfully reported how the next year in 1976 saw many refreshing answers to prayer and much improved circumstances for the church.

This article by Pastor Miller reminds us what a difference a year can make. As the challenging year of 2020 nears its end, may we look forward to what refreshing blessings and improved circumstances the Lord might bring for us in 2021. However, may Pastor Miller’s article especially remind us to yet labor long in prayer and through these trials to count them all joy as the Lord teaches us to depend on Him.

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The Reformation Rally

Celebrating God’s work in the Protestant Reformation has been a long standing tradition in our church.  In the early 1980s, Pastors Richard C. Miller and Carl E. Erickson (of New Covenant OPC in South San Francisco) would conduct joint reformation services complete with dramatic and colorful reenactments of various reformation scenes.  Then in 1990, a long tradition of combined evening worship services on Reformation Sunday began between our church and the churches pastored by Pastor Kevin Kirby (Petaluma Community Church, and later Sovereign Grace Community Church).  Popularly known as the Reformation Rally, these combined services have become an annual ecumenical event in the best sense of the words, with participation from various churches from our presbytery and the local community.

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Spoonerisms and Presbytery Fellowship

Last Sunday, Pastor Reid made a slip of the tongue that immediately brought to mind to several members a longstanding love of spoonerisms coming from the pulpit.  Actually, such spoonerisms have come not so much from Novato pastors but from the beloved Rev. Carl E. Erickson of our sister congregation at New Covenant OPC in South San Francisco.  Each year at our presbytery Family Camp, Rev. Erickson’s wife Kathy has shared the many spoonerisms she has collected over the years, many having originated from her husband.   They continue to be a source of much laughter, as well as an opportunity to keep pastors humble!

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A Season of Thanksgiving for Fifty Years of Ministry

Our church will reach its 50th anniversary as an officially organized congregation of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church on May 13, 2021. That is quite a milestone for our church and it is fitting to enter into a season of thanksgiving to God as we reflect on this history. This year, we also experienced another milestone of sorts — the death of our beloved Rev. Richard C. Miller who pastored the church for the majority of these 50 years, from 1974 to 2006. While we continue to mourn his death, we recognize that this is also a fitting occasion to commemorate his ministry and legacy which is intimately bound up with the history of our church.

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