Q&A with Erik Bonkovsky

As of 7.1.08, Erik Bonkovsky became the official pastor of Franklin Street Community.  Most of us already know him and enjoy his sermons often, as he's been sharing preaching duties at FSC for some time.  But to acquaint us with the nitty-gritty, here are some questions that Eric was so kind as to answer for us:

  • What led you to pursue becoming the pastor at FSC, rather than...well, anywhere else in the wide world? Several things about FSC made it attractive to me. First, I love the people I've met from FSC. Second, FSC is a church in and for and with the city of Richmond. For too long churches have focused on the suburbs and neglected the city. Third, FSC is part of a larger network of churches around Richmond that want to see more people transformed by God's love.
  • Who / what have been the largest influences in your life (in any respect -- intellectually, spiritually, personality-wise, etc.)? The biggest influences on my life are my wife, my kids, my parents, and close friends. A lot of people have influenced me in ways they're not even aware of. I learned how to think in college and graduate school. I've been influenced spiritually by a bunch of close friends over the last few years. It's my family that shapes me most in terms of personality.
  • Besides feeding the homeless via Loaves & Fishes, what are some other ways that FSC can help others in need within our city? I'm sure there are a bunch of ways that FSC can (and will) help those with needs in Richmond. We haven't figured out the specifics yet. But in general, it starts with being good neighbors, being good friends, and partnering with others (especially churches) who are already helping those in need.
  • From what sources do you draw a lot of ideas and material for your sermons (besides the Bible of course)? Reading--other books and magazines; from my own life (especially as I'm aware of shortcomings and God's goodness to me.) From conversations with friends who challenged me to think deeply and see the world from a novel point of view.
  • What part of town do you live in? Currently we live in Mechanicsville. We will be moving into the Fan/West of Boulevard later this year, hopefully.
  • Where did you grow up? I grew up in New England--born in Vermont, attended high school in Massachusetts--with a brief stint in Atlanta in between. That explains my support for the Red Sox, Celtics, and Patriots.
  • How did you meet your wife? We met through mutual friends and through our involvement in Young Life while we were in school in New Jersey.
  • What does a typical weekday look like for you? Spending time with God, with people, and with my family. Thinking about how to know God's love for me and then communicate that love to other people.
  • What does a typical weekend look like for you? During the weekend I spend lots of time with my family--playing outside, reading, exercising. We also like to share meals and laughter with friends.
  • What are some of your favorite foods? Italian cuisine; fresh vegetables; red wine; ice cream
  • What are some of your favorite books? The Brothers Karamazov, The Age of Innocence, A Tale of Two Cities, To Live in Peace
  • What kind of music do you usually prefer listening to? Some current favorites are: David Wilcox, Shawn Colvin, Indelible Grace, Red Mountain Church, Josh Ritter, Andrew Bird
  • Any big plans for the summer (vacation, concerts, clam-bakes, studies, goals)? Getting established at FSC, moving into RVA, short trips to the North Carolina beach with the family.