When I came to you, brothers and sisters, I did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God
with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified …
that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.
I Corinthians 2:1-5

Meet Us: Our Pastor

The New Church “called” its first Pastor –
The Reverend Bruce Van Blair – in 2011. He is usually called
simply “Bruce,” or sometimes “The Rev” or “Rabbi” or
other things that come to mind.

Bruce is a fully ordained Minister of the United Church of Christ. He is a graduate of Andover Newton Theological School. His first church was in Paxton, Massachusetts, where he began his full-time ministry on February 1, 1959. He is Pastor Emeritus of Community Church, Congregational, in Corona del Mar, California, where he served three times for about fifteen years total. After being Senior Pastor of seven churches and nearly sixty years later, Bruce says that maybe he’s starting to get a handle on some of it.

Mariana Van Blair – a voice teacher, accomplished photographer, story-teller, and world traveler – has been married to Bruce for over sixty years.
Some people claim they do not believe in miracles, but that stops them in their tracks.

Bruce claims that all pilgrims (serious followers) have had tougher, more interesting, and more blessed lives than it ever looks like on the surface. Spiritual experiences and awakenings are what make the Path (the Christian WAY) both endlessly exciting and worth all the trauma and dark nights that go with it. Just “for openers,” Bruce is a recovering alcoholic (over thirty years), and many of us think he is an amazingly insightful astrologer (he has been studying astrology for over thirty-five years). Over the years he has been an avid bird-watcher and a challenging opponent in chess and tennis. But mostly we think he has a deeper grasp of the Bible than most of the teachers we have run into. While he seldom claims to be “right” – and encourages each of us to follow the Holy Spirit and frame and follow our faith for ourselves – we sometimes do suspect that he thinks he is right about a few things. In any case, it is clear to us that right or wrong, he has a deep and abiding loyalty to Jesus.

That is probably enough to catch your interest or turn you off. Either way, The Reverend Bruce Van Blair is our Pastor/Teacher, and he is well-represented in our Library and From BVB.

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