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John Sowers

For the last ten years I have had the joy of being the senior pastor and head of staff at First Presbyterian Church.  This is a remarkable church comprised of people who love Jesus, immerse themselves in his word, and live out his call in their lives. 

My relationship with First Pres feels like the culmination of God’s call on my life.  I was born and raised in Southern California; my faith was nurtured by my parents and influenced by their association as volunteer leaders with the Young Life ministry.  I came to Spokane for the first time in the mid-80’s to attend Whitworth University.  Whitworth had, and has, a profound influence on my life.  Academically, socially, and spiritually it provided a foundation for my ministry and my life.

I graduated from Whitworth and then worked for the university for the next five years, in the admissions and institutional advancement offices.  In those years, I became more involved in leadership at Whitworth Community Presbyterian Church and I began to sense a call to ordained pastoral leadership.

After three years of study at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, I took my freshly minted M.Div degree and headed to Memphis Tennessee, where I served Woodland United Presbyterian Church for the next 12 years.

In 2007 I accepted the call to come to First Pres Spokane.  I knew of this church from our previous sojourn in Spokane and I have only grown to love and appreciate the church and its people more in my time here.  I am honored to be used by God at this church to challenge and affirm our common call to grow in our faith with Christ and to extend that faith to others.  This church has also challenged me and caused me to grow in my own love for Jesus and for his call to be his witness.

Jen and I have been married for thirty-two years.  Jen teaches kindergarten in our First Pres Christian School and has a remarkable volunteer ministry with high school students through our Praxis program.  I love her good heart and her wisdom and I thank God for her patience!  I have two young adult daughters (Kate and Emilie) who challenge and affirm my faith and my worldview through their thoughtful compassion and desire for God’s justice.

When I am not here at the church, you can find me in the kitchen, in my backyard tending my smoker, taking a long walk in our beautiful city, on the golf course, hanging out with friends, or reading a good book.