We have spent the last 25 years living in, loving on and giving back to this Community. But over the last 24 hours I have faced some concerns from our attempt to create a safe space to help families have a healthy conversation about youth and gender. I realize there are lots of opinions and feelings when it comes to this subject. I don’t want to sound defensive, but I do feel like I need to make some things clear about our church.

It has been our goal since 1998 to welcome all people, regardless of where they are coming from. Not only are we called to welcome but to love. It is our greatest calling as Christians.

Our hope in bringing Patti Height to our congregation on Sunday was that she could tell her story of how she encountered Jesus and also challenge our people on how we can even better love the LGBTQ community. And with that said, we may not completely align with every single one of Patti’s beliefs, writings or approach. I can tell you that on Sunday morning she will communicate a message of love to ALL people wherever they are coming from.

Josh Way the principal at Marshall put out this statement earlier today to the families at Marshall Middle School.

“Our mission at Marshall Middle School is to ensure all of our students and staff feel safe, nurtured, and welcomed on our campus and in our classrooms. This includes our students and families within the LGBTQIA+ community.”

I could not agree with that statement more. That is our hope as well.

I have been the pastor of Canyon Springs Church for 25 years and the people that have walked this journey with me know that Canyon Springs has developed a reputation of loving people wherever they’re coming from not only in this community, but in benevolent trips around the world.

If you have any questions for me, and would like to talk about this further I would be happy to have a conversation. My hope in planning this event was that we would begin a conversation that would lead to healing. That is still my prayer.

If you would like to have a conversation at any time after this Sunday, please call, text or email me. My email and phone number are below.

Pastor Jack Hawkins
[email protected]