Pastor Gary's Sabbatial

by Gary Bowman on February 16th, 2014

This year, I will be taking a sabbatical—a time of resting, replenishing and refilling. Phase I of my sabbatical will be the beginning of training a small group of third world pastors in Rwanda, March 18-31, 2014 through EFCA; it is a twice-per-year opportunity for the next three years. Phase II, approximately June 24—October 13, 2014, April and I will be studying at Hebrew University/Rothberg International School in Jerusalem, resting and recreating with April, and I will be conducting a second training with the same pastors' group in Rwanda.

This is the second sabbatical gifted to me, my first being in 2001 with a church and house swap with Pastor Simon Mawdsley of Park Church in Stoke-on-Trent, England. It was a wonderful experience for our family, the church there, and our church.

My 2014 Proposed Sabbatical Plan--studied and approved by our elders in August, 2013—includes study, travel, ministry, rest and recreation. You can read our 2014 Proposed Sabbatical Plan here. 

While on sabbatical from ministry here at Paseo del Rey, and before my return in October, God will continue to use our pastors and staff under the leadership of Associate Pastor Derek, along with our elders, and you, as we continue to transform more people into fully devoted followers of Jesus.

Here is some history regarding our Pastoral Sabbatical Policy: In 1997 our elders desired to provide our full-time pastoral staff sabbatical breaks—occasional seasons of pause from full-time ministry. After study of scripture and other churches' experiences, they created a Paseo del Rey Church Pastoral Sabbatical Policy. Our pastoral sabbatical is a season of resting, replenishing and refilling of the heart which renews our pastors for even more fruitful ministry. Each of our pastors who have been with us at Paseo del Rey Church for seven years or more have been granted this gracious gift of pause from full-time ministry. You can review Paseo’s Pastoral Sabbatical Policy here

April GaryApril and I are very grateful for this gift of sabbatical. We thank you for your love, support and prayers during our nearly 35 years of ministry with you. We love Paseo del Rey and are excited for all that God has for us now, and in the future. We long to be even more fruitful together for His glory, and we will look forward to our return in October, 2014. We’ll be praying for you, and for our leaders while we’re on sabbatical.

Please feel free to talk with me or any of our elders with any questions or encouragements you might have. And thanks for your prayers!