Saturday 6 PM

Sunday 9 & 11 AM

This Week At Ascension

Called to create opportunities for all people to become devoted followers of Christ

June 11, 2023

Christ Healing a bleeding woman, as depicted in the Catacombs of Marcellinus and Peter.

Grace and peace to you my family in Christ,

When was the last time you were desperate? Was it when you lost your keys? Your iPhone? 

This week’s gospel lesson is about (our) desperation and (God’s) mercy. Simply put, it’s the desperate who understand God’s mercy so much better than those who don’t think they are in any sort of need. So maybe we are more desperate than we realize. Let’s talk more about this on Sunday. 



Also, if you are interested, my friend Troy (an Ascension Member) recorded a podcast conversation about our gospel lesson. You can check it out at this link.  

Fair Trade Lane – Grand Opening Sunday, June 11th – 10:10-10:55 AM

On Sunday morning, your Fair Trade favorites, some new items, and a few surprises will be lined up on the shelves for browsing and purchasing. We will have Red Barn Cheddar Cheese (both kinds) staying cool in the FH kitchen fridge. Everyone is Invited!  Bring your cup of Fair Trade coffee or tea from the patio and join us – we look forward to seeing you at Fair Trade Lane on Sunday morning. (Please note – we are no longer able to accept credit cards for payment. We’re working with Ascension’s Finance Office to put in place new electronic payment methods in the coming weeks).

Our visit to Equal Exchange

We love it when we find ourselves at the intersection of a truly awesome week just concluded and a truly awesome week opening in front of us.  We’ve just returned from an inspiring gathering at the Equal Exchange Headquarters in West Bridgewater, MA where we joined with the team at Equal Exchange and several Fair Traders from locations throughout New England for a great day of learning, tasting, sharing and collaborating.  

The group toured the plant to see the roasting, blending and packaging of coffee and do some coffee tasting too.  We thanked our EE partners for hosting this great gathering and for being wonderful partners with our Ascension Fair Trade Ministry. We invited everyone to stop by Fair Trade Lane if they are out and about in SoCal. We’re still organizing & processing all of the great vibes and insights we took away from our day at Equal Exchange. We’ll be sharing more ideas and information in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!

Last Week of Sunday School

     This week is our last week of Sunday School for the school year, and we want to say thank you to all of our dedicated teachers, and thank you to all kids for coming and having a blast with us!
     Keep an eye out for information about some weeks of summer Sunday School, and for things like sermon bingo and new children’s worship bags.

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A group from Ascension including Pastor Steve Herder, Pastor Julie McCain and Director of Administrative Ministries Kaylee Searway attended the recent 2023 Southwest California Synod Assembly at CLU.

Presentations and workshops covered a wide range of areas important to the church body in this time, including chaplaincy, church outreach for people with disabilities, Young Adults in Global Mission, and African Descent ministries.

In these photos by Pastor Steve, we see: Kaylee Searway receiving recognition for Ascension for our gifts to help fund seminary scholarships for ELCA Fund for Leaders Federal Chaplaincy Endowment; Pastor Ron Cox leading a vote; Tyra Dennis, our synod’s Youth Ministry Coordinator & Organizer, announcing the start of a special fund of $125,000 to be raised to send our synod high school youth to the National Youth Gathering in New Orleans in July 2024; attendees in prayer.

June 25

After 9 AM Worship

The Silent Ministries

Our congregation has many great, well-known, public ministries. You hear about ones like Fair Trade, the food pantry, the connection to the community through the school and early childhood center, the Global Ministry Team working with refugees, GriefShare, the music program and concerts, Lutheran World relief kits, senior transportation (Sam’s Tram), and many more. 

We are blessed to have three wonderful pastors who give powerful sermons, teach classes, build the faith of our youth (and us adults!), and visit the sick. As great as they are, there are not enough hours in the week to provide all the care that people need. That is where the two silent ministries come in. These ministries are ones you don’t see, and often don’t even know are happening. These two “silent” ministries are Stephen Ministry and Eucharistic Ministry.  

Stephen Ministry provides confidential, one-on-one caregiving. This can be for a short time, or for a longer time. Stephen Ministry often is Crisis Care, One to One, Woman to woman, Man to man, and “Just having someone to listen to me” in a totally CONFIDENTIAL way. We foster acceptance and trust in our caring relationships. If interested, please contact any of our three Pastors, or email Norm Guetschoff, SM Coordinator at .  

Eucharistic ministry provides communion to our members who are homebound or in nursing or residential care facilities. Some people are only in nursing homes or at home for a short time after an injury, surgery or an illness; others may be in care facility for a longer time. If you have not been able to come to worship and not been able to receive Holy Communion, or know someone who has not been able to come to worship, please let the office know or contact Pastor Ron Cox directly at or (805) 807-5257 and one of our Eucharistic ministers will bring this sacrament to them –or to you! 

Congratulations to All of Our 2023 Graduates

Title Card Congrats
To our graduates with undergraduate degrees
American International College

Bachelor of Science, Sports Management
Mackenzie Berman
Megan Chandler
Bachelor of Science, Nursing
California State University Channel Islands
Megan Chandler
Bachelor of Arts, Film
Savannah College of Arts and Design
Jordan Dameron
Bachelor of Arts, Creative Arts
San Jose State University
Walter Gause IV
Bachelor of Science, Psychology
Grand Canyon University
Bella Scarnechia
Bachelor of Arts in Communications
San Diego State University
Caitlin Elizabeth Shaw
Bachelor of Arts, Education
Elementary Education Endorsement
Pacific Lutheran University
Gunnar Squires
Bachelor of Arts, Communication Sciences & Disorders
Bachelor of Arts, Psychology
Augustana College,
Rock Island, Illinois
Rebecca Smuck
Bachelor of Science, Organizational Leadership
California Lutheran University
Tim Matthew Swavely
Bachelor of Science, Computer Science
Chapman University
Michael P. Woodward
Associate of Arts, Theatre Arts
Moorpark College
Carlie Wright
Title Card Congrats
To our graduates with advanced degrees
Kalin Woodward
Juris Doctor
Southwestern Law School
Kalin A. Woodward 
Noah Mattera
Master of Business Administration
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Noah Mattera
Landell W. Merrill
Master of Business Administration
Master of Science, Industrial and Systems Engineering
University of Southern California
Landell W. Merrill
Brittany McCoy
Master of Arts, Education
California Lutheran University
Brittany McCoy

Zoom into Climate Film & Discussion Group

Spirit in the Desert retreat center is offering a Climate Film and Discussion Group this summer. As noted in their promotion message, “Climate fatigue is real. We’re all worn out by the constant barrage of bad news. Climate anxiety is real. More than half of the population reports feeling somewhat-to-extremely anxious about global warming. Climate grief is real. Too many of us have turned that grief inward where it festers as despair.

Where are the voices of hope, of encouragement, of resilience?

They’re coming to you this summer! Following 12 weeks of her weekly series on climate awareness and education, facilitator Sheri Brown invites you to join her in viewing hopeful, encouraging, and soul-strengthening films, followed by group discussion and mutual support. Because none of us can deal with climate fatigue, anxiety, and grief alone. Well, Sheri can’t. And you shouldn’t have to.

Movies we’ll watch and discuss this summer:

  • David Attenborough’s A Life on Our Planet
  • Kiss the Ground
  • The Ants & the Grasshopper
  • American Resilience Project’s Current Revolution series
  • The Letter: A Message for Our Earth”

The program is beginning now. Click here for more information and to register. 

Offerings & Attendance

This summer:


July 10-14

We need lots of volunteers for Vacation Bible School!

Did you know:

  •  We have roles that require zero prep?
  •  Those 7th grade and up can help!
  •  Even if you’re not available the week of July 10, we can use you to help us prepare.
  •  If you think you can’t or you feel a little scared of the idea, remember: that’s often how God’s call feels!  😊 

Come and talk to me!

Can you help?  Want more info.?  Talk to Pastor Julie:

To Sign Up, go to https://vbspro.events/p/events/ascensionvbs2023

For more info, see ad on this page.

Do you have a musical talent that you would be willing to share with the congregation? Either instrumental, vocal or dance, or some combination of those.

We are in need of special music during our summer services.

 Please email and your information will be forwarded to the worship planners. 


This summer’s Stellar VBS is looking for a few good builders to construct two primary set decorations for the week-long program in July; a LUNAR LANDER, and a ROVER. 

Ideally, pieces for each item will be created and assembled by a two-person team. Instructions, specs and materials will be provided. Some tools and experience are necessary. 

Soon, we’ll also be looking for crafters to help us build stars, portholes, etc., from home.  

Sign on to the job by visiting the display in the narthex after service, or contacting Pastor Julie: . Mission command thanks you!

Our Prayer

We pray that you may once again meet the Risen Christ through the Word and Sacrament ministry, and through the fellowship of this family of faith.

If you do not have a church home, we would like to invite you to worship with our Ascension family again.

All people who are baptized and believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are welcome to receive the Sacrament of Holy Communion.

May God bless you in your worship!

Pastors Tim Delkeskamp,  Julie McCain, and Steve Herder


This Week:

Hosea 5:15—6:6
Psalm 50:7-15 (15)
Romans 4:13-25
Matthew 9:9-13, 18-26

Next Week:

Exodus 19:2-8a
Psalm 100
Romans 5:1-8
Matthew 9:35–10:8

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