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Church of the Good Shepherd

Father George Calvert’s creative process “takes a while to gel.”
Father George Calvert’s creative process “takes a while to gel.”
Place

Church of the Good Shepherd

3990 Bonita Road, Chula Vista




Membership: 200 people

Pastor: Father George Calvert

Age: 54

Born: San Diego

Formation: University of California–Berkeley, Berkeley; Virginia Theological Seminary, Alexandria, Va.; Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena

Years Ordained: 24

San Diego Reader: How long do you spend writing your sermon?

Father George Calvert: It takes me about 15 hours. On Tuesday I look over the Bible passage for the sermon. We have a Bible study in my office for an hour here in my office. I then start looking at various themes that come up for Sunday’s reading in the lectionary. I look at commentaries during the week and on Saturday I write the sermon. I wish I could say I get it done earlier in the week. The creative process takes a while to gel.

SDR: Where is your favorite place to compose sermons?

FG: I compose in my house. Sometimes I lie on a bed and sometimes I walk around. I do a lot of walking and thinking and walking at home. I don’t like composing my sermons at the church because there are so many distractions. There are always phone calls and people coming to ask questions about various topics. I like having some privacy.

SDR: Can you think of a time when you gave a sermon that flopped?

FG: I’ve given up trying to tell when a sermon succeeds. Sometimes I think a sermon is the greatest in the world; but it doesn’t go over as well as I thought it would. Other times, I come to church on Sunday morning thinking it just didn’t come together. Then people tell me it’s the greatest sermon they had ever heard.

SDR: What is your main worry as a member of the clergy?

FC: I’m concerned about people outside the Church. I believe that the Church’s primary task is to help people outside its walls. So we’re trying to do ministries out in the community and we’re trying to pray for people outside the church. We have an active family ministry and Hispanic ministry which help in this effort.

SDR: What is the most prevalent sin you observe or hear about from your congregants?

FC: I think it’s the sin of pride — which sounds like a classic answer. We need to have good self-esteem, but when I use the word “pride” I mean it in a theological sense. In other words, “I can live life in my own way and I don’t need God.” It’s like Frank Sinatra’s old song, “I Did It My Way.” There are a lot of people who can live their lives their way and don’t have to live it God’s way. That’s the sin of pride. It’s as old as Adam.

SDR: Where do you go when you die?

FC: We meet God after we die and we are judged. A person insisting on living apart from God is put out of existence. If we want to live with God, then God allows us to enter into heaven. But I believe in order to go to heaven, salvation comes through Jesus Christ. To go to heaven, we need to accept Jesus Christ as our savior. A loving God will allow anyone who wants to go to heaven to accept Christ even after death.

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Father George Calvert’s creative process “takes a while to gel.”
Father George Calvert’s creative process “takes a while to gel.”
Place

Church of the Good Shepherd

3990 Bonita Road, Chula Vista




Membership: 200 people

Pastor: Father George Calvert

Age: 54

Born: San Diego

Formation: University of California–Berkeley, Berkeley; Virginia Theological Seminary, Alexandria, Va.; Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena

Years Ordained: 24

San Diego Reader: How long do you spend writing your sermon?

Father George Calvert: It takes me about 15 hours. On Tuesday I look over the Bible passage for the sermon. We have a Bible study in my office for an hour here in my office. I then start looking at various themes that come up for Sunday’s reading in the lectionary. I look at commentaries during the week and on Saturday I write the sermon. I wish I could say I get it done earlier in the week. The creative process takes a while to gel.

SDR: Where is your favorite place to compose sermons?

FG: I compose in my house. Sometimes I lie on a bed and sometimes I walk around. I do a lot of walking and thinking and walking at home. I don’t like composing my sermons at the church because there are so many distractions. There are always phone calls and people coming to ask questions about various topics. I like having some privacy.

SDR: Can you think of a time when you gave a sermon that flopped?

FG: I’ve given up trying to tell when a sermon succeeds. Sometimes I think a sermon is the greatest in the world; but it doesn’t go over as well as I thought it would. Other times, I come to church on Sunday morning thinking it just didn’t come together. Then people tell me it’s the greatest sermon they had ever heard.

SDR: What is your main worry as a member of the clergy?

FC: I’m concerned about people outside the Church. I believe that the Church’s primary task is to help people outside its walls. So we’re trying to do ministries out in the community and we’re trying to pray for people outside the church. We have an active family ministry and Hispanic ministry which help in this effort.

SDR: What is the most prevalent sin you observe or hear about from your congregants?

FC: I think it’s the sin of pride — which sounds like a classic answer. We need to have good self-esteem, but when I use the word “pride” I mean it in a theological sense. In other words, “I can live life in my own way and I don’t need God.” It’s like Frank Sinatra’s old song, “I Did It My Way.” There are a lot of people who can live their lives their way and don’t have to live it God’s way. That’s the sin of pride. It’s as old as Adam.

SDR: Where do you go when you die?

FC: We meet God after we die and we are judged. A person insisting on living apart from God is put out of existence. If we want to live with God, then God allows us to enter into heaven. But I believe in order to go to heaven, salvation comes through Jesus Christ. To go to heaven, we need to accept Jesus Christ as our savior. A loving God will allow anyone who wants to go to heaven to accept Christ even after death.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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