Dear CCOV Family,
I hope you all just celebrated a wonderful Christmas!
On Sunday, January 6, 2019 I am excited for you all to hear Rev. Dr. Dick Wing
preach a sermon entitled “Ten Things to Do before You Die” from Ecclesiastes 3:
1-2, 6-12. Pending your approval at our upcoming January 27, 2019 annual
meeting, you will get to hear him every other week! To get to know him
better, please take a look at his introduction, which follows.
Happy New Year!
A Short Autobiographical Introduction by Dr. Richard A Wing
Greetings to all of you members and
friends of Congregational Church of the Valley. I come to join you in an
experiment of sharing ministerial leadership with Rev. Sandi Anthony who has
served you so well over the last three years. I begin January 6, 2019.
Shirley and I bought a place in
Scottsdale 2 miles from CCOV in 2016. I retired in March of 2017 from First
Community Church of Columbus, Ohio after serving there 23 years. Your
church was kind enough to provide me with an office outside our condo, for
which my wife is eternally grateful! The “rent” for the office space was to
preach when Sandi needed me. I have filled in twice in her absence.
From October 2017 to the end of
2018, I have served as the interim minister at First Christian Church of
Scottsdale, a Disciples of Christ Church. I grew up in the Disciples of
Christ and served churches in Pomona, Long Beach, Woodland Hills, Concord and San
Diego. All in California. In 1994 I was called as the Senior Minister of
First Columbus, Ohio, a UCC congregation. I have held dual standing in both
denominations since going to Ohio. My main calling is preaching,
spiritual direction and pastoral care.
The main work of the church today,
is to ask these questions: 1. Who are we? (not who were we?) 2. What is
God calling us to do now? And 3. Who is our neighbor? I worked for 10
years with Dr. M. Scott Peck as a leader of Community Building Workshops under
his direction. I most recently completed a 3-year course with Richard
Rohr with the School for Action and Contemplation in New Mexico. I am
working with World Neighbors out of Oklahoma City. Currently, World Neighbors has programs aimed at self-sustenance
in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.
I am interested in what it means to be a Christian in dialogue with other
When I say, “I am a Christian,” that DOES NOT eliminate other
pathways to the Divine.
I believe that religion without humor is deadly.
I don’t think God cares what we believe, but cares where our feet take us in
service to the entire human family.
I don’t believe that God was more available to people in the past as God is
available to us right now.
I believe that our culture is dying for what we lack in silence.
I believe that the UCC is not an answer church but a journey church. Not a
judgment church, but a grace church. And for both of those virtues I am
I believe that the first miracle of our Lord turned the water into Red
Zinfandel wine. Don’t ask me how I know these things. And let’s share a glass.
I thank Sandi for inviting me to an adventure. An adventure by its very nature
means we don’t know exactly where we are going, but we know that we travel with
good people who make all the difference on the journey. You may contact
me at any time now through the church. You will soon find my calling
cards on the narthex table.
Dr. Richard A. Wing