May 2024

Dear Chapel Family and Friends,

Happy Spring!  Now that I’ve lived on Alaska for 3 winters, here are what I see as the signs of Spring in Southeast Alaska:

  • Skunk cabbage:  first you see it, then you smell it.
  • The call of the Varied Thrush, which sounds like a soccer referee blowing his whistle; which coincides with the start our high schools’ soccer season.
  • The ice clears on Auke and Mendenhall lakes.
  • Th first bike tours show up in our Log Chapel parking lot, which means the cruise ships are back.
  • It’s beginning to be daylight when I wake up, and daylight when I go to bed.

First, I’d like to share an exciting new way of being church we are experimenting with in our leadership culture.  We’ve borrowed the terms College of Elders and College of Deacons.  We are trying to identify and engage our community of men and women who have been ordained and have served as ordained officers at Chapel by the Lake.  As Presbyterians, we affirm that ordination is for life.  At Chapel, we have approximately 60 people who have been ordained and have served as an ordained officer!

One of the change-realities for Chapel has been the decrease in staff.  This has created significant leadership vacuums for Chapel’s ministries.  One way to cultivate leadership is to identify people who have already been affirmed as leaders in Chapel and invite them to lead us into our next seasons of ministry.

The College of Elders and College of Deacons had our first meeting last month, and we re now identifying which ministries we are ready to move forward.  Thank you to those elders and deacons who have responded.  I’ll share an update on this initiative next month.

Second, we are entering another great season of hospitality.  We have many groups who use our facility every week, and the number will only grow as we move toward summer.  We need help with preparing our church to host groups.  Please reach out to Kourtney at and ask you might serve.

We are fortunate to have a few special events coming forward, including a guest preacher on Pentecost.  Please visit our calendar on our website to keep up to date on the many opportunities to be the church.

In Christ’s Joyful Service,


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