While meeting restrictions have kept Mike Shreve from sharing his Bible studies and prayer with staff and legislators inside the California State Capitol, the state’s fabulous weather — the envy of many who are dealing with February’s ice and snow storms elsewhere — beckoned him outside!
The Ministry Leader to members of the CA legislature and staff for six years, Pastor Shreve is comfortable roaming the halls of the State Capitol Building every week, meeting with legislators and staff members for Bible study and prayer.
But COVID-19 restrictions have, for the most part, shut down the California State Capitol. It’s closed to members of the public, which includes Pastor Shreve, and only one staff member per office is allowed inside.
Like many other CapMin ministry leaders, Pastor Shreve continued his ministry via Zoom, email messages, phone calls, remotely by internet, and any other way he could think of to impart the Word of God to those eager to hear it until face-to-face meetings are again permitted.
Then it occurred to Pastor Shreve — the available and beautiful Capitol grounds.
“You’ve heard the old saying if the front door is locked, walk around the building to find an open window,” he said. “And I found such an opening. The outer Capitol Grounds are open to the public. I have been able to meet with folks outdoors.”
He calls it his “outdoor chapel.”
To make sure he complies with distancing recommendations, Pastor Shreve has been making appointments with legislators and staff and meeting one-on-one or in very small groups.
This includes Pastor Shreve’s group of legislators he calls “the Five Stones,” Senators Jim Nielson and Brian Dahle, and Assembly Members Megan Dahle and James Gallagher. The fifth member of the group is former Senator Mike Morrell who retired last year due to term limits.
“My first outdoor meetings were a breath of fresh air to all involved,” Pastor Shreve said. “Walking while conversing is nothing new to these folks. As we discussed the weekly Bible study, Senator Nielson and Assemblyman Gallagher and I stopped at a park bench to pray for the future of our nation and our state.
“These men are dedicated prayer warriors who have not grown weary of well doing, (Galatians 6:9). They are committed to their calling as public servants and to their constituents.”
After meeting with the legislators, Pastor Shreve met with a group of staff members at the World War II Memorial for a sit-down Bible study.
In future meetings, Pastor Shreve said he hopes to provide snacks and drinks to make Bible study participants feel more comfortable and honored.
“Please pray for our capitol community as they adjust to these obstacles,” he asked.