Morning Coffee Inspiration from Pastor Gae

Aloha Friends,

Yesterday at Foodland, I ran into a deacon from the Diocese of Arizona who is here on holiday.  Most people (including some bishops and priests!) don’t really understand the role of a deacon and how important deacons are to the spiritual growth of the church community.
Deacons bring the needs of the world to the church. They help us understand the complexities of such social challenges as poverty, homelessness, mental illness, immigration, addiction, incarceration, domestic abuse, elder care, etc. 

Deacons remind us as to why we need to serve. They keep the teachings and actions of our Master Jesus front and center, as well as our baptismal covenant to seek and serve Him in all persons, loving our neighbor as ourselves.

Deacons show us how serving is critical to the spiritual journey. This is the main difference between a social service and a church ministry. In a social service, it is “us serving them.”  In a church ministry, we see that the serving goes both ways. The ones we serve are actually serving us. As we serve, our compassion, kindness, humility, and patience will be challenged or ignited. Without the Christ connection, serving can easily slip into an extension of one’s own ego. 

Deacons guide us individually and as a church community as we discern how we can best serve.  I have noticed that churches with deacons often have a multitude of opportunities to serve from simple things like purchasing select groceries for a food ministry to more intimate and challenging ministries in prisons or shelters.
Deacons gather us together to debrief our experiences. In a safe environment, we are given the opportunity to share our questions and frustrations. Questions often brought to the table are “Why aren’t people more appreciative?” or “Why would you risk losing your children for a drug high?” or “Why aren’t they working?” Deacons remind us of the gospel stories in which Jesus’ disciples often expressed their doubts and frustrations. And deacons always bring us to prayer. 

The role of a deacon in our worship service best symbolizes the ministry. Deacons proclaim the gospel; lead the prayers of the people; set and clean up the table for Holy Communion; and dismiss us to “Go in peace, to love and serve the Lord.”

My prayer and hope is  that one day soon, Christ Memorial will have a deacon.

As always, your thoughts,
~Pastor Gae+

Centering Prayer
This Sunday , July 21, 4:00 - 5:00pm
Meets in the Christ Memorial Sanctuary

Our Centering Prayer group is open to all faiths and to anyone who is seeking a deeper meaning to their spiritual life along the Contemplative Path.  We meet the 1st and 3rd Sundays of the month.
Each session, Pastor Gae gives meditation instruction followed by a bit of music and sacred reading, time to sit in silence, and time for observations and questions. Cushions for the pews are provided. Join us for our next session on Sunday, July 21st! We meet in the sanctuary.
Come Early to Worship and Walk our Labyrinth
Behind the sanctuary, next to the burial grounds, you will find our newly created Labyrinth. There is not a right or wrong way to walk the Labyrinth. Simply observe the intuitions and desires that come as you walk. This is an embodied prayer experience. Let your body lead you! You can walk it slowly and reverently or quickly and playfully (always mindful of others walking). If you are moved to pause at a given spot, do so!

Pastor Gae notes:  Here is a beautiful Youtube meditation set at the Chartres Cathedral labyrinth.  For those new to labyrinths, I encourage you to watch it

Bishop’s Committe Meeting
This Sunday, July 21, 11:00 - 12:15pm
Meets in the Church Office

Our Bishop’s Committee is responsible for the “business” of the church. All members are invited to observe the meeting. There is time during the meeting for comments or questions.  

Let’s Play Mini Golf
Sunday, July 28, 2:00pm
Anaina Hou, Kilauea

Join fellow Christ Memorial parishioners for some fun on Sunday, July 28th at 2:00pm. We will be meeting at the Anaina Hou Mini Golf & Gardens to play 18 holes of fun mini golf surrounded by a Hawaiian Botanical Garden. Journey through the history of Hawaii and its tropical flora, while water hazards, pipe shots and other obstacles make for a fun and challenging game for all ages. Mini golf is free with a Hawaiian ID on Sundays; otherwise, see the fees at the link above. Let us know if you plan to join us by emailing .
Save the Date:  Newcomer’s Lunch
Sunday, August 4
11:00 - 12:30pm in the Church Office

For those new to the church in the past year or so, our newly formed Membership Team is hosting a lunch. Pastor Gae and members of our Bishop’s Committee will address:

  • The Episcopal Church and what we believe (how we are same/different from other Christian tribes)  
  • The history and ministry of Christ Memorial
  • A walking tour of the Sanctuary and burial grounds
  • What it means to be a member

For more information, sign up on the Walkway or contact Pastor Gae at

Christ Memorial News Featured in Global and Local News Services

Historic Kaua'i Church Completes Year-Long Restoration
  • 1940’s “Sanctuary for the Spirit” now opened daily to the public
  • Columbarium, labyrinth, and peace pole added to ancient burial grounds
  • Church complex serves community needs in health, wellness and healing

Christ Memorial Episcopal Church today announced the completion of a year-long restoration effort and its commitment to providing a “Sanctuary for the Spirit” in serving the health, wellness and healing needs of the community.
As you enter Kilauea town on Kolo Road, you can’t help but notice Christ Memorial Episcopal Church, an iconic lava stone sanctuary consecrated in 1941, and its ancient burial grounds, dating back to the 19th century. Across the street is one of the island’s most well-known thrift shops, Helen Mitsui Shared Blessings, a ministry of the church.
Church members just completed a year-long beautification of the church sanctuary, burial grounds, parish hall, office complex and thrift shop. “For us it’s a celebratory rising from the ashes,” said Gae Chalker, priest and pastor of the church. 
What most people don’t know is that two years ago the Christ Memorial property was in disrepair. Maintenance was overdue, but the real underlying crisis was in the covert activity happening on the property. We discovered community drug usage and prostitution occurring on the property. The thrift shop would receive donations during off-hours, only to have those donations stolen or strewn across our grounds, creating endless cleanup for our parishioners. “We were feeling despair as we tried signage, closer monitoring, and involving the police, but the problems continued,” said Bishop’s Warden David Akana.
The turn-around came last year when the church board committed to a major restoration and renovation project. “We decided we wanted our little church to be a ‘sanctuary for the spirit’ for the local community and for the many tourists who visit Kaua`i,” noted Suzanne Kobayashi, bishop’s committee member in charge of long-term planning. “Everything we were going to undertake would support that mission.”   

This year, the sanctuary was repaired and painted inside and out, and is now open to the public throughout the week. Tourists on their way to the Kilauea Lighthouse visit the church for prayer, meditation and to stroll the burial grounds. Locals stop by to refresh their spirits.
Two morning church services are held on Sundays, and a Centering Prayer gathering, including meditation and a labyrinth walk, has been added twice per month on Sunday afternoons.
Church Historian Maggie Lea, the overseer of the burial ground restoration, explained, “Our burial grounds date back to the sugar plantation era. Those buried attended the Hawaiian Congregational Church and eventually Christ Memorial.” Gravesites without a local connection have been fostered by church members to caretake, and ancient tombstones have been cleaned and repaired.

Across the street, the church complex includes the Helen Mitsui Shared Blessings thrift shop, church offices, and the Parish Hall. These buildings have been restored and painted, and currently serve church ministries and a myriad of community groups that provide health, wellness, and healing services to the public. Locked gates at night discourage after-hours trespassing. “Although the property is much cleaner and safer, we still need help from the community,” added Akana. “We ask that thrift shop donations be made only during business hours, and if you see any suspicious activity, please contact the police.”
Three new additions have been added to the sanctuary and burial grounds property:
  • A columbarium for the housing of the cremains of loved ones has been built. This long-time vision of the Akana Sproat Ohana was consecrated by The Right Reverend Robert Fitzpatrick, Bishop of Hawaii earlier this year. 

  • A seven circuit, Chelsea neo-classical labyrinth has also been added to the sanctuary gardens. Created by Kaua`i labyrinth designer Bob Vlach and constructed by church members under his direction, the labyrinth welcomes all to visit for a meditative walk.

  • A Peace Pole was recently added to the center of the labyrinth. “The Peace Pole Project entails the planting of thousands of poles around the world with the message, May Peace Prevail on Earth,” noted Lea. “Our Peace Pole shares this message in eight languages connecting with the ancestry of those buried on the grounds – Hawaiian, Japanese, Tagalog, Mandarin, Portuguese, German, Scottish Gaelic, and English.”  
Christ Memorial Episcopal Church follows the teachings and ministry of Jesus the Christ. “Come to me all ye that travail and are heavy laden, and I will refresh you,” Jesus said. “Our hope is that our little church will provide the space for that refreshment,” said Pastor Gae. “Come and sit under the beautiful Poinciana tree, walk the labyrinth, or just spend some time in the sanctuary.”
For more information on the illustrious history of Christ Memorial Episcopal Church, please visit .
KIDS! The Great Adventure: Great Stories of the Old Testament
Summer Sunday School
Sundays, 8:00 – 9:00am
Meets in the Church Office
Each week, we are going on a Great Adventure to explore the great bible stories of the Old Testament. We meet heroes and villains, and encounter some really big challenges. This past Sunday, our students learned about The Tower of Babel.  This Sunday we are learning about Abraham. 

Join us on any Sunday this summer! 

For more info, contact Keana or Leona .

Can you volunteer? We are required to have two adults in Sunday School class. Can you help out our leaders one week? If so, please contact Keana or Leona.
Helen Mitsui Shared Blessings Thrift Shop
Half-Price Sale on Books, CDs and DVDs    

Summer reading, book club, back to school? Starting Friday July 19, all books, CDs and DVDs will be half price at the thrift shop library. Please help us clear our shelves so we can restock with new collections. Pass the word on to your friends and neighbors!
Entering the 21st Century: Credit Cards Accepted 

After 40+ years of running the Helen Mitsui Shared Blessings Thrift Shop the old fashioned way — cash transactions only — we are going modern, at least as a test for the next 90 days. 

You can use credit and debit cards for purchases. Mahalo nui loa to open minds, technical support and initiative to get us set up from Helen, Craig, Bill, Scott, Rebecca, and Steve. Let us know what you think!  
Thrift Shop Hours for Shopping and Donations

Tuesday, Thursday & Friday: 2:00 - 5:00pm
Wednesday: 9:30am - 12:30pm
Saturday: 9:30am - 3:00pm
Sunday: closed (fellowship 11am - 12pm)
Monday: closed

Special Ministry of Christ Memorial ~ Open for Prayer
Monday-Friday 9:00am - 4:00pm
Feeling a little overwhelmed with life? Just drop in to Christ Memorial for a little peace and quiet.

One important ministry of Christ Memorial is the opening of our church doors, Monday through Friday, during the day. It’s amazing the number of people who drop in to pray, meditate, or just to seek a few minutes of quiet. Unfortunately fear has crept into many churches. Pastor Gae believes our country would be very different if all churches kept their doors unlocked.

Our Sunday prayer list includes those whom our visitors have asked us to pray.

Live off island? If you have a prayer intention or would like to pray for those on our prayer list, email Pastor Gae at .

Ways to Support Your Church
Thank you, thank you, thank you! Your financial support and generosity allow us to create and enhance the beautiful environment and worship that you and your family enjoy on a weekly basis.

Change to Automated Giving
Thank you to those of you who automate your giving and have a plan to support your church. Your consistent, planned generosity makes it possible for us to budget and dream responsibly. Want to change to automated giving? It makes life easy, especially if you travel. Contact our Treasurer Scott Oliver for information at .
Thank you to all of you who still like to write checks. Please make checks payable to Christ Memorial Episcopal Church and mail to PO Box 293, Kilauea, HI 96754.

Through the decades, many have given stock to Christ Memorial, enabling us to be a consistent presence in Kilauea. For more information on contributing stock, contact Scott Oliver at

Sharing our Property for Support and Recovery Groups
Christ Memorial wants to be known in the community as a healing place for the body, mind and spirit. We are seeking support and recovery groups to meet on the property, either in the Parish Hall or the Office. If you know of a group looking for a place to meet: grief support, eating disorders, anxiety, Al-Anon, Gamblers Anonymous, etc., please tell them to contact us.

If you know of a group looking for a place to meet: grief support, eating disorders, anxiety, Al-Anon, Gamblers Anonymous, etc., please tell them to contact Pastor Gae.

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) groups meet at Christ Memorial Parish Hall every week on these days and times:

  • Tuesday at 10:00 am
  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday at 7:30 pm
Sign Up for the Diocese of Hawaii E-Newsletters

We invite you to sign up for the Diocese of Hawaii E-News and E-Chronicle to stay informed and to learn about happenings taking place around the Diocese.

E-News is published twice monthly and announces upcoming events and activities throughout the Diocese.

E-Chronicle is magazine-like and publishes special feature stories.

To sign up for the Diocesan E-News and E-Chronicle, click HERE .

Newsletter Mission: Our weekly newsletter was launched this year to inform our island community, as well as connect with our broader community of old and new friends, near and far. Whether you live on Kaua'i, visit seasonally or joined Christ Memorial for the first time during vacation, we welcome you into our global family. We endeavor to include inspiration, new ideas, practical advice and updates on news and events of Christ Memorial. Let us know how we can serve you best in 2019 by replying to this newsletter or emailing us at

Have you met Pastor Gae? Pastor Gae wants to get to know you all – phone chats, home visits, morning coffees, afternoon teas or walks on the beach. Near or far, reach out to meet or share your thoughts at or (623) 208-9436.
Christ Memorial Episcopal Church
2509 Kolo Road, Kilauea, HI 96754
Mailing: PO Box 293, Kilauea, HI 96754
Phone: (808) 482-4824