Pastor, MCC of the Redwood Empire

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Metropolitan Community Church of the Redwood Empire
Guerneville, CA


Dear Pastoral Candidate,

We want to thank you for your interest in the Pastoral position which will be available on Aug. 1, 2019.  MCCRE has long been a church dedicated to our community, social justice, a variety of ministries, and demonstrating the love of God through action.

As we seek God’s direction in finding a settled Pastor, it is our expectation that one seeking this position will recognize the uniqueness of our “river community” and the folks who reside here. We are looking for a dynamic individual who has the ability to deliver sermons that inspire, encourage, and challenge us in our spiritual growth. With an emphasis on service to our community, our congregation is engaged in a variety of ministries that support some of Guerneville’s most vulnerable residents. Our new Pastor needs to have a passion for community outreach, pastoral care, and social justice.

We look forward to engaging with you in this process and having the opportunity to share with you the wonderful church that is MCCRE.



The Pastoral Search Committee:
Debbie M. Gulling, Committee Chair/Board Member
Don Ferrell, Board Member
Trish Schneider, Board Member
Ken Einhaus
Micheal McRae
Sue Parrott
Tim Webb


Brief History:

MCCRE (then Russian River MCC) was founded in Oct. 1982, by Rev. John Torres and his partner, Tim Webb. They had been attending MCC San Diego when Rev. Torres was called to plant a church at the Russian River. He initially served as Pastor at MCCRE until 1985, when he was called to start a church in Santa Rosa. Rev. Torres returned to pastor MCCRE a second time for several years in the late 90’s. Both Rev. Torres and Tim continue as active members of MCCRE today.

Other active members include retired pastor Rev. Better Pedersen and Elder Mel Johnson (Elder for the fellowship from 2001-2003). Rev. Elder Debbie Martin started her ministry at MCCRE. Rev. Scottie Shelton returned to ministry during her time at MCCRE. She is currently interim pastor at MCC in El Paso.

Over the years, MCCRE has been blessed with ministry from many ministers and lay leaders including Rev. Elder Jim Mitulski, Rev. Jack Isbel, Rev. Jody Safier, Rev. Linda Lassiter, Rev. Elisabeth Middelberg (12 years), Rev. Sharon Henry, and our current Pastor since 2016, Rev. Norma Gann. Unfortunately, Rev. Gann is returning to Texas where elder care for her mother-in-law is much less costly.

When founded in 1982 our church initially met at The Woods Resort in Guerneville. After that we held services at the Guerneville Community Church. In May 1999 the church moved to the Oddfellows Hall and we changed the name from Russian River MCC to MCC of the Redwood Empire. The name change indicated a shift in wanting to reach people outside of the Russian River area. Today, our dream is to expand the size of our congregation and move into a building of our own.

MCCRE is known as the little church on the river that can—and DOES. We have a very humanitarian congregation with outreach to nursing homes, jails/juvenile hall, supporting the unhoused, and other vulnerable populations. We also boast a high percentage of loyal members to have attended MCC for over 40 years.

Mission Statement:

As a Gay, Lesbian, Bi-Sexual, Transgender, and Straight community, our vision is to fulfil our call to bring peace and justice.

To this end, we seek to create a safe, welcoming atmosphere where we encourage each other to grow individually and communally.

We seek to enlarge God’s territory through inspiring, music-filled worship, and through our involvement and connection within the larger community.

Our dream is to have our own space where we can provide and receive physical and spiritual nourishment.

Core Values:

MCCRE is dedicated to the belief that ALL individuals are precious to our Creator. The doors of MCCRE are open to all with the assurance that all who enter will be welcomed to join fully as we worship together and experience the love of God.

Our Community:

MCCRE is located in Guerneville, CA. and is about 1 ½ hours northwest of San Francisco. Situated in wine country and nestled in the Redwoods, Guerneville was established along the beautiful Russian River in 1850. Known for its scenic beauty, Guerneville offers a variety of activities such as rafting, camping, fishing, swimming, walking/hiking in Armstrong Woods, browsing the shops, and sampling the array of restaurants and bars for those who enjoy an active night life.  A thirty minute drive into Santa Rosa will provide additional shopping, restaurants, entertainment (movie theaters and the Luther Burbank Center for the Performing Arts), and a wide range of other activities. A short drive west will allow one to experience the majestic Sonoma Coast. Regardless of one’s passion, there is something to be found for everyone in this amazing community.

Financial Matters:

Compensation and Benefits: The Pastor’s compensation shall be established through the church’s budgetary process and will be negotiated between the Pastor and Board of Directors. The Pastor shall be paid twice monthly (2nd and 4th Sunday’s) at the rate agreed upon prior to signing the Pastoral Contract. Given our budgetary concerns we are prepared to offer our new Pastor $2100.00 per month.

MCCRE will pay all normal and reasonable conference expenses incurred by the Pastor for attendance at authorized UFMCC conferences. These expenses would include the following: transportation, lodging, meals, registration fees and incidentals. The dollar amount will be established in the budgetary process.

Annual Clergy Renewal Status Fee shall be paid in December of each year by the Pastor to receive the Early Renewal rate. The Pastor shall submit receipt for reimbursement of the full cost of early renewal.


Terms of Employment:

In order to balance the needs of the congregation and the needs of the Pastor, the Pastor shall be entitled to the following leave:

a)    One Sunday off from preaching every month. This allows for others to preach and for the Pastor to work other hours from time to time. The Pastor will ensure that the pulpit is filled during any absence.

b)   Two weeks paid vacation annually. Vacation dates to be affirmed by the Board of Directors (A week is based on the current number of contracted hours per week). Five weeks of vacation annually beginning with the tenth year of full-time service. Nor more than one week may be carried over to the next year.

c)    The Pastor shall accrue one health day every two months. Said time shall be accrued and be cumulative for the duration of this contract but shall not exceed thirty days. Furthermore, at the time of termination of employment, accrued health days shall not be reimbursed.

d)   After each five years of service the Pastor will be given a paid sabbatical of two months. This time is for reflection, education, writing, and renewal.

e)    In the event the Pastor shall become totally disabled, which is expected to last for a period of at least six months, either party shall have the option to terminate the Pastoral Contract, after consultation with the MCC Office of Church Life and Health. Such option shall be exercised by either party by giving written notice to the other party of at least thirty days.

For the purposes of this contract, the Pastor shall be deemed to have become totally disabled if, in the opinion of two or more physicians who have examined the Pastor, they are not able to perform their duties by virtue of illness or injury, and such inability is expected by said physicians to last for six months or more. The opinion of the physicians shall be presented to the Board of Directors in writing. During any such period of disability, the Board may request the MCC Office of Church Life and Health consult with the Board regarding the appointment of an Interim Pastor.

f)     The Pastor shall be entitled to 5 days for emergency leave (per year) in the event of a death occurring within their or their spouse’s immediate family. This time shall not be charged against vacation time and shall not be carried over to the next year if unused.

In closing we want you to know that MCCRE is a vibrant church committed to our community, social justice, and one another.  If you feel called to learn more about us, we invite you to send your letter of interest to our Pastoral Search Committee Chair (Debbie M. Gulling) at: [email protected] . We will respond quickly with an application for you to submit along with your resume.

We will be accepting applications from 4/15/19 through 5/31/19. We look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you for your interest in becoming the next Pastor of MCCRE,

The Pastoral Search Committee