Who We Are


Thank you for visiting Bloom in the Desert Ministries' Web site.  You are welcome here.

Please Join us for Sunday Worship at 10:00am, at the Palm Springs Demuth Community Center, 3601 E. Mesquite Avenue, Palm Springs.   

Scroll down for Bloom's general information.

Special note:  In case you are looking for help dealing with abuse, discrimination and/or bullying, Here are some resources for you.

The Trevor Project Lifeline is always available, dedicated to the wellbeing of young people.  Call 866-488-7386 whenever you need support or are considering suicide. The Trevor Project Web site is here.

Trans Lifeline is dedicated to the well being of transgender people, with a hotline staffed by transgender people for transgender people.  This is a FREE helpline run by volunteers and supported by the community.  Call 877-565-8860 for support and help.  Web site is here.

Also, the National Suicide Prevention Hotline, call 800-273-8255. Web site is here. 

About Bloom...
As we welcome all who welcome all, Bloom covenants to being a safe space and sanctuary for persons who experience spiritual abuse and religious discrimination related to gender identity, sexual orientation, ethic heritage and bullying. 
 
Your journey.  Your Church.  You're welcome here.

Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon Sign up for our Email Newsletter
For Email Marketing you can trust

Welcome!
Liberal Protestant Church:  Inclusive, Open and Affirming, Reconciling 

Your Journey.
  Your Church.
    You're Welcome Here.

        Check Us Out . . .
Sunday Morning Worship: 10:00 
Location 3601 East Mesquite Avenue in Palm Springs, CA  (Click address for map.) Sunday morning location is the Palm Springs Demuth Community Center. 





Accessible
Palm Sunday
First Location in Palapas' Rose Garden

 

 

Who is Bloom in the Desert Ministries? 

 Bloom in the Desert Ministries is an Open and Affirming United Church of ChristOur roots and affiliations also connect us with the Church Within A Church Movement and Reconciling Ministries Network in the Methodist tradition. 

As a result, we are an interdenominational, inclusive, progressive-Christian, traditional mainline, liberal protestant church.  We are a “new start” church community of grace, mercy and justice meeting for Sunday morning worship at 10:00 with coffee time following, at 3601 East Mesquite Avenue in Palm Springs, California. That's the Demuth Community Center building at the west end of Demuth Park; one block east of El Cielo Road, just over one mile west of Gene Autrey Trail. 
 
Our mission statement, created by and given unanimous consent of Bloom’s leaders, is: 

Guided by teachings of Jesus Christ, Bloom is a community of believers who strive to uplift and heal one another.  We gather to worship God, witness our faith in the living of our lives and uphold one another in Christian living.  United in our diversity we are inclusive and embracing.  We agitate for God’s peace and justice in our community and around the world.

Bloom's Open Leadership Team adopted the following core values:

We are a people of God’s extravagant welcome.
We are a people of Covenant.
We work toward a just and loving world through service and generosity.
We listen for the still-speaking God.
We encourage a life of inquisitive and thoughtful searching.
We are grounded by Christian faithfulness.
We celebrate the joy in life.

In Bloom's substantial consideration of core values, it was repeatedly affirmed that we align ourselves with the following five "historic commitments" of the United Church of Christ:

We are a united and uniting church.
We are a multiracial and multicultural church.
We are a church accessible to all.
We are an open and affirming church. 
We are a peace with justice church.

Bloom's vision statement is:
 
Bloom chooses to build a loving, safe, inclusive faith community that is intellectually challenging, emotionally supportive and filled with the strength, integrity and social responsibility that spirituality inspires.


In living out our compassionate vision in the Coachella Valley of Southern California, we commit ourselves to full inclusion of all persons without regard to status or economic condition and we celebrate race, color, national origin, sexual orientation and gender identities. As part of the larger welcoming movement in the Christian church, we are an Open and Affirming United Church of Christ, living in collaboration with the “Church Within A Church Movement" and “Reconciling Ministries Network” in the United Methodist Church As Bloom continues our extension ministry of Broadway United Methodist Church in Chicago, in order to expand our interdenominational welcome and enhance our ministry’s integrity, after a year-plus-long consideration we were welcomed into “dual covenant” relationship with the Eastern Association of the Southern California-Nevada Conference of the United Church of Christ on October 29, 2005.  Our California mentoring congregation was Redlands United Church of Christ.

Starting September 18, 2002, with a weekly in-home Bible study under the banner of "The Bible is Not a Weapon of Mass Condemnation," Bloom in the Desert Ministries became an addition to the faith-based resources of the valley and an innovative model -- as an independent incubator -- for ministry with integrity. We began weekly Sunday morning worship services in the outdoor Rose Garden of Palapas Art Garden and Nursery, Palm Springs, as source of renewal, revitalization and healing on  March 9, 2003.
  With the closing of Palapas, we moved to the nearby “Y” on June 27, 2004.

We look forward to developing ministries and sharing God's love for all persons in the name of Christ. To you, we say,  "Welcome!  Experience God's Love With Us!"



Even though the billboard is gone, the message continues. Welcome.
Easter 2003
Who Is the pastor? 

Kevin A. Johnson, or “Rev. Kev” as he is sometimes called, is an ordained minister with full standing in the United Church of Christ as of September 2013.  He started his almost 40-year career in the United Methodist Church (UMC), having served 10 early years in various pastoral ministries.  Yet, because of the general church's official stance on homosexuality, he was not able to be the pastor of a church within the UMC since 1982.  As an out gay man, he volunteered within Broadway UMC in Chicago and the Reconciling Ministries Network (an inclusive caucus of United Methodists) to live out his call to ministry while working day-to-day as a businessperson.

In April 2002, Kevin completed 20 years working in the Chicago business community, ultimately as vice president of marketing for Quicksilver Associates, a woman-owned business communications company producing meetings, video, multimedia and Web-based business solutions. Kevin’s major client portfolio included several large national corporations. During that time, Kevin remained in good standing as an ordained Elder in good standing on Honorable Location in the Wisconsin Conference of the UMC and a clergy member of Broadway UMC.  While growing in the life of  Broadway UMC, Kevin heard increasingly his primary call to ordained ministry.

During Broadway’s 2001 Advent season a distinct vision formed when, as Kevin reports, “Like we used to say when I was a student pastor, the Holy Spirit’s ‘conviction’ grew ever stronger in me.  A clear picture developed in my mind that I could not shake off.”  In that picture, he saw himself standing in the desert, in white clerical robes, hugging people.  To him this meant that the Spirit would not rest until he had made the decision to move to the desert to do ministry.  “Since the decision was made, the ‘peace that passes understanding’ has confirmed my faith that this is what I am supposed to do as a new phase of life,” Kevin concludes.

An opportunity occured during the formation in February, 2002, of the inclusive, progressive “Church within the Church” movement in the UMC.  This afforded Kevin and Broadway a breakthrough way to start a new ministry with Kevin’s leadership.  By unanimous church council vote, Kevin was sent as a clergy member of Broadway UMC, to do ministry in the Coachella Valley and surrounding area with the permission and support of then Pastor Gregory Dell and with Broadway’s blessing and commissioning.  So, in mid-2002, Kevin responded to intense spiritual prodding: he resigned his job, sold his condo and most of its contents, and moved to Southern California’s Coachella Valley to follow his vision.
 

On location since late 2002, Rev. Kev’s broader vision is for a Christian ministry of nurture and service in the Palm Springs area that is a liberal protestant church. Basic research shows existing demographics would benefit from and support a ministry of grace, mercy and justice. The Coachella Valley’s population growth in the last decade suggests the area is "white unto harvest."  Through God's inspiration, this ministry was named "Bloom in the Desert Ministries."  In October , 2005, after more than a year of discernment, the Bloom congregation was welcomed into the Eastern Association of the Southern California Nevada Conference of the United Church of Christ.  Rev Kev subsequently sought and was granted Duel Standing in the Eastern Association.

Rev. Kev says the mission of Bloom adds a dimension to the faith communities of the area.  “Bloom draws persons who are seeking an inclusive faith community doing Christ’s ministry with love and integrity in the area and beyond."  That is the proactive and positive model Bloom in the Desert Ministries prays to be and live out in the greater Palm Springs area.

 

"You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide; so that whatever you ask the Father (Heavenly Parent) in my name, God may give it to you. This I command you, to love one another." --John 15:16-17