Sunday, November 13, 2011

Spiritualist Church of the Comforter

By Vanessa Arizmendi

(Santa Barbara Independent) After a chance encounter with the Spiritualist Church of the Comforter one Sunday morning, Judy Campbell-Clark left her profession as a craftsperson and decided to devote her life to the church. On Saturday, November 19, she will be officially ordained as a minister and will celebrate with a reception...
"During the service, the reverend delivered a message to my dog that was so spot on. I’ve come back every Sunday since then." - Judy Campbell-Clark

What was your life like before the Spiritualist Church became a part of it? How did your life up to then shape your religious convictions?

I am a fourth-generation Santa Barbaran, so I have lived in this community my whole life. I lead a fairly simple existence. I was a self-employed craftsman for many, many years.

My mother and grandmother were the most influential figures in my spiritual life. They didn’t attend any formal churches, but they did hold very strong spiritual beliefs, especially pertaining to the afterlife and the belief that our souls cycle through numerous lives. They would also consult mediums on occasion...

How did you become involved with the Spiritualist Church?

I quite literally stumbled upon the church one Sunday when I was walking my dog. I had passed the building countless times through the years, but on this particular morning I felt strangely curious. When I asked someone walking in what the building was used for, I was invited inside with my dog. During the service, the reverend delivered a message to my dog that was so spot on. I’ve come back every Sunday since then.

What would you say is the key difference between your church and other places of worship?

We are a community free of dogma. We do not have any saviors...

What types of services do you offer at your church?

We offer hands-on healing services every Sunday morning before the main service. Our main service consists of hymn singing, lectures, and then spirit greetings during which members of the congregations may receive messages from deceased loved ones through one of our messengers. We also offer message services on Wednesday afternoons open to anyone from the public who wishes to communicate with a spirit.

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