Reverend Dr. Chris Pritchett


Chris Pritchett met his wife, Devon, at Westmont College, and together they enjoy an active lifestyle with their three children: Hannah, Abby, and Lucas. They currently live in Carpinteria, CA. Chris has served congregations in Southern California and Washington state, and brings over sixteen years of full-time church ministry experience, including five years as Senior Pastor / Head of Staff of John Knox Presbyterian Church in the Seattle area. He is currently serving as parish associate at Summerland Presbyterian Church and serving on the board of the Henri Nouwen Society while leading the Pro Deo Foundation. This Foundation focuses on ministering to the needs of poor, destitute and orphaned children and youth.



A native of Southern California, Chris received his undergraduate degree at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California and his Master of Divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California where he received an award for overall excellence. He has also completed a Master of Theology in Preaching (ThM) degree from Princeton Theological Seminary, where he was the recipient of an award for excellence in preaching. Chris has just completed his studies for the Doctor of Ministry degree at the George Fox University in Oregon.

 

Chris’ other pursuits include contemplative spirituality, health and wellness, supporting his kids’ soccer, spending time outdoors with Devon, hiking, surfing, running, gardening, and, hopefully, returning to skiing and snowboarding.


Click here to listen to Rev. Chris Pritchett's sermon, April 19,2020 or

 click here to download the sermon transcript


Letter from Chris Pritchett


Dear Mount Olympus Presbyterian Church,

 

I am so grateful that God has led us to this point in our discernment process with your Pastor Nominating Committee. My family and I are eager to meet you, one way or another, during this strange and difficult season of global pandemic. From the conversations I’ve had with your PNC families, a few staff members, and Pastor Steve, I have felt an ease of relatability that has led me to believe that serving as your pastor for many years to come would bring me great joy. My own due diligence has led me to believe that the multi-generational and Christ-centered ministry of MOPC would resonate with me very much.

 

My deepest sense of vocation is to follow Jesus Christ with my whole self, in every area of my life. Out of my own journey with Christ, I am grateful to offer my gifts of preaching, teaching, spiritual formation, pastoral care and leadership to come alongside a community seeking God’s will together. This is the essence of my calling, and my greatest joy and burden.

 

My wife, Devon, and our three children, Hannah, Abby, and Lucas, are among the greatest gifts that I bring with me to the ministry of the Church. Devon and I are blessed with a kind, loving, active and healthy family, and we find joy in offering our life together as a blessing to others. As a family, we are eager for the opportunity to build meaningful and Christ-centered relationships with you. 

 

Though I have not met you, I have been praying for you since this past August, and my prayers will continue in the weeks to come. Especially as we navigate these uncharted waters of the Coronavirus and how it may shape our futures, I trust that our deepest fears and greatest hopes will be met in the person of Jesus Christ, who promises to be with us always, even until the end of the age. To that end, it would be my utmost commitment to always point the congregation to Christ while seeking his wisdom for how to respond in faith and trust.

 

We are very much looking forward to our upcoming visit, even with the limitations we all have to accept. My prayer for you in the days to come is echoed from Paul’s words to the Church in Rome: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13).

 

With Gratitude in Christ,

Chris

The Pritchett Family

Devon is a joyful mother and faithful caregiver for her family. Born and raised in Visalia, CA, Devon loves the outdoors, hiking, soccer, volleyball, running, and being with family and friends. She is a wise and compassionate presence, tuned to needs of others. Her background in business administration serves her well as she keeps the Pritchett operation organized and running on all cylinders. With a small family lineage in Carpentry, Devon also loves making ‘upcycle' furniture and art with reclaimed wood. She is often found in her driveway sanding pallet boards during the daylight hours or fixing things around the house. By far the handy one in the family, Devon often allows Chris the opportunity to grow in humility.


Hannah will be 14 in May and loves soccer, photography, hanging out with friends, hiking with her family, art, reading, and going on solo runs.

 

Abby is 12 (and almost a ½) and loves soccer, art, writing letters, playing games, hanging out with friends, making us laugh, hiking, and watching scary movies.

 

Lucas will be 10 in May and loves soccer, reading, basketball, pretty much all sports, boogie boarding, playing board games and playing with our pup, Roxie.

Chris’ Statement of Faith

I believe in one triune God, who created the heavens and the earth, and breathed life into existence. God alone is worthy to be glorified. Through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the unity of the Holy Spirit, I worship the Holy God of Israel.

I believe in God, whom Jesus called “Father,” and whose image is reflected in all persons, male and female. God created all humanity for the purpose of living in everlasting fellowship with God. But humanity rebels against God and his intention for us. We desecrate the image of God in people, we turn away from God’s commandments, and we choose to live according to our own desires. In so doing, we separate ourselves from God, one another, and the natural world. Yet God, with unfailing love for humanity, has not abandoned us. In sovereign justice and mercy, God chose to redeem God’s beloved creation.


I believe in Jesus of Nazareth, who is the Christ, the image of the invisible God, and the firstborn of all creation. Fully human, and equally God, Jesus announced God’s reign on earth through word and deed: offering sight to the blind, good news to the poor, healing to the sick, freedom to the prisoners, and forgiveness to sinners, so that all might repent and believe the Gospel. Unjustly condemned, yet motivated by love, willingly giving his live as a sacrifice for the sin of the world, Jesus was crucified and died. But God raised Jesus from the dead, overcoming the power of evil, and conquering death, in order to accomplish God’s redemptive plan for all creation.


I believe in the Holy Spirit, who renews and sustains life, and transforms us into the likeness of Christ. The Spirit inspired the authorship of Scripture, and guides us into the truth of God’s Word, through its proclamation. The Hebrew Scriptures and the New Testament together serve as our unique and authoritative witness to Jesus Christ, God’s written Word and self-revelation to us. In them we learn of God’s faithfulness throughout history, we come to know of God’s love for all creation, and we are shown how to live faithfully as God’s people in the world.

Through the power of the Holy Spirit, the Gospel of Jesus Christ is sealed in our lives in the sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. The sacraments are visible signs of the invisible reality of God's grace given to us. In the waters of baptism, we hear the voice of God who calls us “Beloved,” and welcomes us into God’s covenant community, the Church. Through our participation in the Lord’s Supper, God nourishes us in the body and blood of Christ, strengthens our faith, and binds us to Christ and one another. God’s never-ending and abundant grace transforms us to be a witnessing sign to the watching world—a sign of our faith declaring to the world that in Christ, God is making all things new.

Together as one Church, we are united as the priesthood of all believers. As the body of Christ, we are sent by God to proclaim God’s love for all humanity, demonstrating God’s mercy and justice in the world through word and deed. We rejoice that nothing will separate us from the love of God, and we actively hope for the new heaven and new earth, when Christ shall come again in glory.

Glory be to the Father, the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, who was, and is, and is to come! Amen!