It took a couple of weeks, but finally we were reunited June 10 with our numero uno, Teyler! What a great joy to see him. 6000 miles of ocean separating us makes these occasions very special. Because of his continuing work as pastor for 5th and 6th graders at Ocean Hills Covenant Church in Santa Barbara, Teyler remains there this summer (some 200 miles south). We all yelled and squeezed when we saw each other, and Teyler's little sisters barely let go of him until we headed back north. This is to say nothing of our joy at seeing Eric's parents and his brother and family. We were also able to see Westmont College (the first time for Karyn and soon-to-be freshmen, Christian). To Eric, the landscape was vastly different since he last saw the campus before the two infamous fires ripped through the mountains over the past year. Nevertheless, Spring has brought new life, and the army of construction workers were busy making the campus better than ever. Lots of laughing, football in the park, surfing, and boulder scrambling made our time in Santa Barbara a blast. It was then off to Pasadena where Eric was finally awarded his Doctor of Ministry degree (notice the doctoral stripes on the arm of the robe!).
The picture is of Eric with his doctoral supervisor, Jim Bradley, Geoffrey Bromiley Senior Professor of Church History at Fuller Theological Seminary. It was a great moment, even though the commencement service was anything but a moment, as nearly 500 people received seminary degrees of one form or another. The quiet drive back to Castro Valley was sweetened by the time we shared together and the promise that Teyler will be heading our way in a little more than a week. Besides, there will be one more trip south before the big one back to the far side of the world on August 12.