Each Sunday, promptly at noon, worshippers gather at the austere, simple Victory Christian Church in Eagle Rock.
Here, they consider it as home away from home – with its promise of companionship and camaraderie, conformity and constancy; with its teachings of joy, hope and peace, in a life of victory.
How easy it is to be happy here.
For the congregates, they do not only consider this place of worship as a chapel or an oasis — it is their place of prayer worship and praise.
Rev. Pastor Orsay Perez is recognizable across the room and throughout the years.
He brought color into the room for professionals, the ordinary lay man, the poor and the wealthy — to a congregation of people from all walks of life.
On a recent chilly Sunday, his preachings were about lessons on how to learn to forgive and accept forgiveness.
Pastor Orsay beams at everyone who meets his gaze. He spots and acknowledges a long missed convert.
He attracts followers, especially those who want to learn about being obedient to the will of God.
Obedience is more important than sacrifice, according to the Holy Bible.
They invited him to their homes and listened with bated breaths, as he bantered the Holy Scripture when he preached: “take the Christian life in your bosom and hold it in your arms…be the best friend of peace.
He is the compassionate pastor to his flock, the one who listens and talks to everyone — even the cynical.
He reaches out to the impatient, unreachable, suspicious, regretful and easily angered.
He would rather just be a simple man of God: an approachable, reasonable pastor who soothes broken spirits and brings them to the path of righteousness, strengthened by faith, in times of temptation, peril and distress.
Sunday service is abundant with testimonial stories and with biblical allusion, to illuminate how things might be done or how problems can be solved.
Their bible study regularly rotates among the congregation.
We’ve been attending quite a dose of emotionally-charged bible studies with the inherent, insatiable curiosity of a writer, reasonably anticipating issues that draw such divergent points of view, serious conflicts, perhaps even sharp verbal confrontations for some guests.
Perhaps no other book has been so graciously venerated and admired, as well as chopped, sifted and scrutinized with skepticism.
No book on philosophy, religion or psychology (whether of classical or modern) has been subject to awe and admiration (or reviled) upon every line and tenet.
But regular Bible readers find it nearly impossible to be indifferent about the Scriptures.
The paradox of humanity is that we are many things to many people. Throughout our spiritual journey, we have the ability to love and hate, to help or hurt, to win or lose.
But most of all, we have the power and dignity of free choice in our religious practice.