I reflect on my 20 years at Ojai Valley Community Church.

The changes:

  1. shifted from a Evangelical/Fundamentalist Bible Theology to Jesus Centric Theology emphasizing living the teachings of Jesus-loving God, ourselves, others, indiscriminately.
  2. went from exclusive Membership to a member being anyone who freely joins us as long or short as they desire on the journey.
  3. went from Closed Communion to Open Table.
  4. went from men only Elders/Teachers to equality of men, women in leadership and ability to teach.
  5. went from LGBTQ condemning to affirming and welcoming.
  6. went from finances maintaining a church building to selling the building generating investment income to maintain people.
  7. eliminated support of Missions conversion programs-now support practical aid and humanitarian (housing, food, medicine, water wells) programs.
  8. went from geographically campus centered activities, to being active in the community at large!


— Pastor Paul Bergmann