A Little Extra Help to Keep the Home Fires Burning

Seems like in one way or another, Jack and Kate Eisel have always been busy putting out fires — unless they were building them.

The couple met fireside in 2009 at Zephyr Point Presbyterian Conference Center, where Kate was the conference manager, and Jack, a recently retired pastor, was volunteering in the maintenance department.

"Since our courtship developed through long talks in front of the fire during snowy winter nights,” recalled Kate, "sitting by a fire is very special to us."

As for Jack, following a long, second career spent almost entirely in interim ministry, he was no stranger to fighting the frequent fires inherent in transitional situations. Throughout his career, Jack served 15 interim pastorates over 25 years, in 12 different presbyteries throughout the western U.S. There God used his gifts to help congregations navigate through challenging and often difficult times.

These days both Jack and Kate candidly admit that moving forward in their own post-retirement lives has required some careful planning — and maybe a little firefighting.