Posted by: Ed | September 10, 2010


With any announcement like we made last weekend, there has got to be questions. One of our board members wrote these up anticipating some of the questions that would be asked. That’s why they are in the 3rd person. I’ve added on a few since this weekend. You can add a few more. Just leave a comment.

Q: Will Ed continue to be our Teaching Pastor?
A: Yes. While some churches have separate Senior and Teaching Pastors, as Journey has had for many years, it is also common for one person to be both the Senior and Teaching Pastor. Ed will be wearing both hats from this point on.

Q: So how can Ed do both jobs?
A: As we alluded to on Sunday, we have done some restructuring of the staff team. Mike’s primary responsibilities included the finances and leading/overseeing the paid staff team. Ed has assumed some of the leadership responsibilities and two people have stepped in to help carry some of the day to day work load. Bob Nelson, who has served Journey in various capacities for years, will lead the administrative and finance area. Rod Kaya, who has also served in various roles for over a decade here, is taking on an interim role during this transition, specifically helping Ed with the leadership of the staff. We’ll keep working on this. For now, please be patient as we work things through.

Q: Why didn’t Mike make the announcement?
A: We did go over the service and the message outline with Mike before the service. But it would have been really hard physically for Mike to do this in all three services. He did personally announce it to the staff team.

Q: What effect will this have on Journey?
A: For the time-being, the day-to-day workings of Journey will be pretty much the same. Most people probably won’t even notice the change. Longer-term, there will probably be some changes, in part just to allow Ed to effectively take on this new responsibility. (Here’s my additional comment: But also we realize that healthy churches that are seeking to stay in step with the Holy Spirit are always changing. The reality is that for us pastors, this is a huge change. We realize that partly because of the nature of having a distinct Senior Pastor and Teaching Pastor, and partly because of Mike’s health, many of you didn’t get to know and serve side by side with Mike. But his risky step of faith to start journey and the many steps of faith since then, including bringing in a teaching pastor, have impacted YOUR life, even if you don’t know him personally.)

Q: Was this really Mike’s decision?
A: Yes. It was becoming increasingly clear to Mike, Ed, and others that something had to change. Mike and Ed had a bunch of good conversations about it over the last few months, and they both agreed that this is the right move for Journey at this point in the church’s development.

Q: Is this decision at all related to Jason’s decision to go to Norway?
A: No. As you probably know, Ingvild is from Norway, and this is a move they’ve been considering for a long time. And remember that Jason is still our worship leader, and will be back to lead worship every few weeks. Jason still attends staff meetings via Skype and is working with Tim Martin in leading the worship ministry while he is in Norway.

So bottom line, are we o.k.? Well, yes. But we need your prayers more than ever. I’m asking you to pray for me, BIG TIME. Now would be a great time to join the Pastoral Prayer Team (email Pray for God to work in Mike’s life. Obviously this is hard for him. Pray that God would continue to work at Journey and pray that we would step into what HE has for us!



  1. Oh gosh, Mike and Laurie have definitely impacted our lives in the nearly 13 years our family has been part of Journey. We were one of those couples that were stressed out and bickering like crazy on Sunday mornings just trying to get to church, and we would sit down and listen to Mike, and it was like he had prepared a personal marriage counseling lesson just for us. We would look at each other, smirk and roll our eyeballs at each other, and then hold hands for the rest of the message. We knew Journey was home. Mike baptized me (my 3rd time! – long story) in one of the earliest bay baptisms, and Laurie’s leadership of the women’s ministry has been a huge blessing to so many women.

    I understand this must have been a very difficult, heart-heavy decision for Mike. Is there a mechanism by which we can submit our personal sentiments to Mike while he settles into this new arrangement?


  2. Kathy —

    Journey is collecting thank you notes at the email address below:

    • Dear Mike and Laurie:

      I just wanted to say thank you. To you Mike for the vision you had and your love for God’s people. Without your vision, Journey would not be what it is today. Laurie for your love for the women at Journey. You taught me so much, mostly how to stay focused on what people are saying to me, no matter who’s waiting to talk to me. It’s a lesson I use frequently at church now that I work at church. Mike, you taught me a valuable lesson. I try to use it all the time I start to purchase something. “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without”. The more I save, the more I can give to others. I value you both and you have made a huge impact on my life. I love where I go and work now. Westside Church in Bend Oregon is such a blessing to me, but I’ll always consider Journey as my home church. Each time we return to San Diego for a visit, we cannot wait to go to Journey. Thank you Mike and Laurie. We will continue to pray for you both.
      We love you, Dodie and Daniel Sandoval

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