Christ Church Staff
The Rev. Dr. Daniel DeForest London
I grew up in Los Altos CA, where I had a fun and mischievous childhood while attending evangelical churches with my family. When I was 12, we moved to Ithaca NY, where the long, cold winters gave this California kid a rude awakening. In upstate NY, I attended a school that was part of a charismatic church called Covenant Love Community; and I was soon baptized in the Christian and Missionary Alliance denomination. During this time, I began taking my schoolwork and my spirituality more seriously, thanks to excellent teachers (including my father); and I started falling in love with literature, thanks to C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. During my sophomore year of high school, we moved back to California, where I graduated from The King’s Academy in Sunnyvale. I was accepted to and considered attending Billy Graham’s alma mater Wheaton College, but decided to remain in sunny California instead and attend “The Wheaton of the West Coast”: Westmont College in Santa Barbara. At Westmont, I double majored in English and Religious Studies, served as the Co-Director of an Urban Ministry Team, and worked as a radio DJ and then General Manager of the college radio station. I also participated in three off-campus programs: in San Francisco, southern Oregon, and the UK, all of which helped pop me out of my evangelical bubble and put me on “the Canterbury trail” which led to the Episcopal Church.
After being rewarded the “Most Outstanding Religious Studies Student Award” and being told by the chaplain supervisor at SF General Hospital that I was called to be a minister, I decided to attend Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena. During seminary, I worked as a café barista, bookseller and then manager at Borders bookstore while attending All Saints Episcopal Church, where I was confirmed by the Right Rev. Chester Talton on May 12, 2007. While finishing my Master’s degree, I served as the Director of Youth Ministries at Church of Our Saviour in San Gabriel, which eventually sponsored me for ordination.
I then pursued a PhD in Christian Spirituality at the Graduate Theological Union while interning at St. Clement’s in Berkeley and St. Alban’s in Albany CA (not NY). I met my wife, Ashley Bacchi, in 2011 at a Religious Studies conference in SF and we subsequently helped each other trudge through and eventually complete our doctorates. During that time, I launched and led a collaborative youth ministry in Marin county; taught courses in Ethics, World Religions, Bible and Spirituality; earned a Certificate of Anglican Studies from CDSP; and published a couple academic articles on prayer. I was ordained to the transitional diaconate by the Right Rev. J. Jon Bruno on June 8, 2013 and then to the priesthood by the Right Rev. Mary Glasspool on January 11, 2014 at St. John’s Cathedral in Los Angeles. More recently, my wife and I tied the knot at Grace Cathedral in SF, on the indoor prayer labyrinth, on May 20, 2016. During this last year, I have been serving as the Priest-in-Charge at the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer in San Rafael, where the average Sunday attendance has doubled.
Ashley and I love traveling, exploring, visiting museums, cooking, reading, wine-tasting, eating sushi, going to the beach, attending theatre, and playing Settlers of Catan (a strategy board game). We are both thrilled to be living in Eureka and I am personally honored, humbled, slightly anxious but mostly excited to be your new rector.
The Venerable Pam Gossard
I am married to Paul and together we have a son Daniel, daughter-in-law Becky, and three beautiful and brilliant grandchildren.
There have been several calls in my life. First was a call to faith where I was baptized by immersion at the age of ten. The next call led to a lively and wonderful thirty plus year career as an educator. The call to the diaconate came into focus after I started to attend Christ Episcopal Church in Eureka. Formation for this call has taken me many places including an internship at the Betty Kwan Chinn Day Center, fieldwork at St. Alban’s in Arcata, and three years attending the School for Deacons in Berkeley.
The time at the School for Deacons was a spirited combination of academics, liturgy practicum, fieldwork experience, and ministry but the greatest takeaway of the school has been the gift of community. The support and encouragement of the faculty and my classmates cannot be overstated and it is my hope that we will continue to listen, push, confide, encourage, and stir each other in our present and future ministries.
Recent ministries for me include Music and Arts Camps for underserved school aged children in our community, events for children in foster care, and food pick-up at a local hospital for distribution to the homeless.
In November 2017 at our Diocesan Convention, I was appointed to serve as one of two Archdeacons in our diocese. Along with Gary Brown, our task as Archdeacons is to assist the Bishop in growing the diaconate, help in the care of the forty plus deacons in our diocese, provide leadership, and facilitate continuing development.
I truly value the unique privilege of serving at Christ Church with fellow deacon, Anne Pierson. Together we are excited to bring back news to the church of what is happening in and around Eureka and are ready and willing to listen and support the parish as it reaches out to our community.
The Reverend Anne Pierson
I’m definitely a local – born in Eureka and baptized here at Christ Church as a baby followed by confirmation at the age of 11 and reaffirmation a few years ago . I felt God’s call when I was attending Eureka high school but this was around 1958, 18 years before General Convention voted to open ordination to women. With no place for me in the church, I continued my education, graduating from Humboldt State with a BA in Art in 1964, and then further education at San Jose State (1964-1967). After working for two corporations during and after my education while in the Bay Area, I moved back up to Eureka in 1972 to open The Art Center in Old Town which, after 26 years, I sold to two of my employees in 1998. This was a way to utilize my knowledge of art and the business skills acquired via my work plus family orientation. I would feel God’s call from time to time but would dismiss it as not possible as I didn’t believe the way I thought was necessary for one so called. In the mid 80’s I finally opened myself up to God and began the long process of listening and learning culminating in my ordination as a Deacon with 7 others including our Archdeacon Pam Gossard on August 13, 2016. In addition to serving as Deacon with Pam, I schedule and share in training the Acolytes and Eucharistic Ministers, the Prayers of the People Team and Eucharistic Visitors, and offer anointing and healing prayer. Outside Christ Church, I have been a Volunteer Chaplain at St. Joseph Hospital for over 17 years, am on the board for Hospice of Humboldt, and own the McKinleyville Shopping Center in McKinleyville (since 1998). I used to fear the closing words of our Rite II Confession – “… that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways,…“ but now I embrace these words because they have brought me a sense of peace, fulfillment yet continuing challenge. May they also be so for you.
Director of Music and Organist
Christ Church Vestry
Helen Taylor, Senior Warden
Robert (Bob) Hines, Treasurer and vestry member
Heidi Erickson (Junior Warden)
Peg Gardner, Clerk of Vestry
Royal McCarthy, vestry member
Gail Freeman, Asst. Treasurer
Irene Hannaford, vestry member
Christina Strevey, vestry member
Jackie Moore, vestry member
Lynn Bean, vestry member
Julie Carins, vestry member