October 13, 2015 — by Rev. Eric O. Jacobsen

A Different Kind Of Church

“We are a church that aspires to exist for the sake of those who are not already part of our fellowship”.  This is the first line of the first set of five plumb lines that we recently adopted to help guide us towards the future to which we are being called.

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April 30, 2015 — by Rev. Eric O. Jacobsen

Jesus Shaped Identity At The Denominational Level

Jesus called them together and said, "You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." (Matt 20:25-28)

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January 22, 2015 — by Rev. Eric O. Jacobsen

An ECO Synod Executive Council Update

Hi. My name is Eric Jacobsen, and in addition to being a pastor from Tacoma Washington, I am the President of the Synod Executive Council. I’m also a contributor to this blog, so if you are a regular reader, you may already know a bit about me and some of my random thoughts about life in ECO. Today, I wanted to combine two of these hats and use the blog forum to give you all an update from our latest meeting of the Council that took place just last week. Let me first introduce you to the members of the ECO Synod Executive Council:

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August 13, 2014 — by Rev. Eric O. Jacobsen

Words I Never Thought I'd Say

Feelings of dread


Rank in order (from most undesirable to least undesirable) the following experiences:

  1. A root canal

  2. An IRS audit

  3. Your denomination’s synod meeting

  4. Putting your dog down


There was a time in the not-too-distant past when ‘item C’ might have beaten out a few of these for the status of least desirable. I’m not kidding. I really used to dread going to denominational meetings. It’s not that denominational meetings were literally as painful as a root canal, but in my experience, they were painful in their own way. The pain I experienced had to do with the yawning gap between what could be and maybe what should be and what I actually experienced.

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May 29, 2014 — by Rev. Eric O. Jacobsen

A Year of Jubilee

Unflappable: The ability to remain cool and calm in the midst of a crisis.


For as long as I’ve served in ministry, unflappability has been a core aspect of my pastoral identity. Or, I should say that was a core aspect of my pastoral identity—until Holy Week 2013. That date will stand out in my memory as the time I was officially flapped.

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November 17, 2013 — by Rev. Eric O. Jacobsen

Standing Up to Quiet Down

"Local Churches Leave Denomination Over Homosexuality"


stepping upThis is a headline I've been dreading ever since my church began the discernment process to determine whether we should leave our denomination. The last thing I want is for our congregation to be known in the community as "the church that hates gay people." For a church in a city that was recently voted “The Gayist City in America,” such a reputation could have a negative impact on our mission.

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