"The good news is we are getting married, the bad news is you are doing the ceremony."
I was shocked on two fronts; first that my friend, a professed bachelor, was indeed getting married and the second being the fact I would somehow have to become ordained in time for the ceremony. This phone call from my friend jump started my journey, and with a little help from an online Christian organization, I received my ordination in time to perform the wedding ceremony.
For many of my friends, the thought of me being a Pastor was akin to me being named Mary, Queen of Scots. I am a terrible example of a Christian, and I did not want people to look at my shortcomings and take anything away from God’s glory. I still struggle with this today, but maybe that is why I am here; if people look at my life and think that God can forgive and love this guy, He can surly forgive and love me.
This is how I came to be the "DP" or Designated Pastor for the Capay Valley. I know a few of the churches in the valley, and they have great Pastor's and Ministers; I just wish more of my friends would connect with them.
The harangues from my friends who have known me a long time notwithstanding, I have come to appreciate the position. Since that first wedding ceremony, I have had the honor to officiate four more weddings for friends. I have also been asked to perform a funeral service for a family friend.
All things considered, I like weddings better.
As much joy and celebration one finds at a wedding, eventually, our life here on earth will come full circle. While there is pain and sorrow at a funeral service, it is also a time when everyone must think about their own mortality. They must think about their own life, and take a measure of who they are, comparing that to who they want to be. It can be turning point, a time to rethink priorities, a time to put first things first.
None of us is guaranteed tomorrow, our lives are like a vapor in the wind. Not to be morbid, but death is a fate that awaits us all, and it is appointment we hardly ever get to schedule.
Friday, June 12th, I have been asked to perform the funeral service for my friend Ray Bargagliotti. Ray was a fixture in the valley, a family man, and a person who gave of himself always. He will be truly missed.
I will try to keep it together as we remember Ray, but I can’t make any promises.
Services will be at the Capay Cemetery at 11:00AM.