When you think of a “pastor,” what image comes to mind? Maybe a person who is clean-cut and straight-laced? Someone studious, with white shirts and black shoes, who prays in the eloquent language of King James? Well, Pastor James was no king. In fact, with long hair and lots of tattoos, he looks at first glance to be part of a local motorcycle gang, and indeed, that was part of his old life. But make no mistake – James Blankinship was a pastor – we were blessed to have him as our “Outreach Pastor” – having earned his degree from the Tucson Theological Seminary and his ordination from the Evangelical Association of America in 2009.
James gave his life to the Lord early in 2007 – right here at Community Christian – but it was in the springtime at a meeting of the S.O.B.E.R. Project in Tucson – a church dedicated to addiction recovery through the power of Jesus Christ – that he really “caught fire for the Lord.”
And he worked doing ministry for Jesus Christ ever since. James started and lead a S.O.B.E.R. group at Community Christian, which is still going strong today. And with his wife Kim, and a variety of music leaders including Cathy and Wayne Honea, he started the weekly 6:30 p.m. Saturday night Cross/Fire worship service. He was also an Elder.
James and Kim have three grown-up daughters, who all have been part of our church: Brittnay, who has two boys, Tristan and Caden, and does massage therapy; Brandi, who is married to Alex Montano and has two boys, Alex Jr. and Keegan; and Toni, who lives at home. Kim, Brandi, and Toni have all been baptized at our church. James also has two boys, Charlie and James, who live in the area with their families.
Pastor James and his family served the Lord, caring for and helping many even under adverse circumstances. Pastor James went to be with his Lord on March 12th, 2018. We give thanks for Pastor James, his family, and their ministry.