What do you do?
Richard Carpenter

Where do you work and what is your title?
       I'm privileged to serve as the pastor of Pikes Peak United Methodist Church.
What do you do there and/or what are you responsible for?
       I serve as the spiritual leader of this faith community, leading worship, prayer, and Bible studies. I'm also responsible for helping grow the Kingdom of God by sharing the gospel message of Jesus Christ and growing our church family.
How long have you been doing this kind of work (total)? How long on the Westside?
       I have been in full-time ministry for 10 years. Prior to that I served our nation in the United States Air Force for 23 years, and worked in corporate America for six years, managing retirement and assisted living communities. I have been appointed to my church for 5 1/2 years, and have lived on the Westside for 4 1/2 years.
What do you like best about it (other than quitting time)?
       There is no "quitting time"! And I love it! I love interacting with people, serving them in any way I can, and helping them to grow in service to others, as we're called to do by our Lord.
If you could change one thing (other than pay), what would it be?
       Our small church has the largest and warmest "heart" I have ever experienced. I would love to have more neighbors, and those who "race by" on 30th street, slow down, visit, and see us for who we are. Our people are, for the most part, Westsiders, and that makes them real and caring people. If we could get others to enter our doors, I think they too would find new friends, and a warm, loving place to be.
What part of your work did your training/education never prepare you for?
       Growing up in a lower middle-class family in central Pennsylvania, and living the majority of my life in the Air Force, I was never prepared for caring for the homeless in our neighborhood and on the Westside. I am so pleased that our church is one of 21 churches on the Westside who supports Westside CARES, our local non-profit that meets the needs of hundreds of families and homeless people in our midst.
What makes working on the Westside special?
       The small-town feel, coupled with caring people in stores, gas stations, schools and our police and fire station. Neighbors know neighbors. It seems everyone likes being a part of the Westside, and that makes it very special.

“What do you do?” is a regular feature in the Westside Pioneer. If you know someone who has an interesting job on the Westside (but doesn’t live here), he/she might be a candidate for this column! If you know someone who might qualify, give us a call at 471-6776.