The guiding principle for the work of Dr. R. Scott Colglazier is simple: “The greatest glory to God is a human being fully alive!”
R. Scott Colglazier is Senior Minister of First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, the oldest Protestant church in the city of Los Angeles, and home to the world’s largest church pipe organ. The church shares a thriving campus with Pilgrim School, the most diverse private school in the state of California.
Since his arrival in the summer of 2008, Dr. Colglazier has been leading First Church through a remarkable period of renewal and growth, as well as significant outreach to the city. He has served a number of churches throughout his career, most notably University Christian Church in Fort Worth, Texas, one of the largest churches in the country, and the famed Riverside Church of New York City.
He is the author of several books, including Finding a Faith that Makes Sense, Circling the Divine, Touchstones, Yes to Peace, and his best-selling Christmas book, A Winter Name for God. His most recent book is titled A Dictionary of Faith: For Open-Hearted, Open-Minded People. He is also author of the popular spirituality blog Take a Breath.
Dr. Colglazier has been the featured speaker at many of the nation’s great churches, and his work as a religious leader has been highlighted on CNN, The Today Show, CBS Morning Show, The Advocate, as well as in The New York Times. He is an outstanding leader of small groups, and recently led an extraordinary retreat in Tuscany titled: Rediscovering the Fire of Everyday Life.
Dr. Colglazier is especially interested in the relationship between religious faith and the larger cultural life of Americans. He is known as a progressive, optimistic, and healing person of faith, and uses a breadth of resources, including art, poetry, photography, music, film, psychology and Interfaith awareness to inspire and challenge people.
When asked about where he is now in life, Dr. Colglazier recently remarked: “Many rivers have flowed into my life experience. A positive childhood experience in the un-glaciated hills of southern Indiana. An adolescent sojourn into Christian fundamentalism, that was quickly rejected in favor of a liberal, progressive, and intellectually satisfying faith. An awareness that all of life is a sacrament of God. A belief that the key to life is gratitude. And an understanding that life is a journey, and as long as we are growing, opening and changing, the journey is good.”
Throughout his career, Dr. Colglazier has served many boards and community organizations, including Boards of Trustees at Texas Christian University, Brite Divinity School, Christian Theological Seminary, and is the first Christian clergyperson to serve on the Board of Trustees of the Los Angeles Holocaust Museum. He has also served local chapters of Habitat for Humanity and Planned Parenthood. Beyond his graduate degrees from Christian Theological Seminary, Dr. Colglazier has spent extensive time at the Esalen Institute and Tassajara Zen Center.
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