Good News, 06.17.10

Friends:

Truth is the ‘light’ by which to find your way out of darkness.  Turn it on!

Congratulations to: our Graduates – Alexi Griesbach and Elisabeth Pfeiffer on graduating from high school; to Katherine Beeler on her college graduation; to Ro Lo Bianco and receiving his Master’s Degree in Wildlife Biology; and to Marco Garzon on passing the Bar Exam.  Well done all!

Blessings to Tim and Ting Spengler who will be married this weekend in Yosemite.  I am glad for them and that they have asked me to preside in one of nature’s finest cathedrals.

The Partnership Committee will meet after worship this Sunday, June 20th.  In addition the Pet Festival Planning Committee will also be meeting simultaneously after worship.  We love to provide you with choices.

The Jazz at Peace 5th Season Finale was so fine.   It is simply quite stunning what fine creations are presented in our sanctuary.  For Father’s Day we’ll have a 2 for 1 Special on our remaining Jazz items:  t-shirts, mugs and CDs.   Help out Dad and Jazz at the same time.  (The 45th Anniversary of the Jazz Vespers is on October 31.  Look for a major celebration – All Nite Soul – then.)

There are many people in need of your prayers: Pat Huseby,  Nancy and Paul Rivinius/Eickberg on the death of son Richard, Matthew Pontious; Derek Ellingson (age 13) and Brooke Ellingston (8) on the death of their parents; Elizabeth and Curt; Doug; Susan Crane; Randy and DeeAnn; Jerry Slater; the Rippon family on the death of brother Bruce; Judy, those living with addictions; the unemployed; Sheila, Taylor.  God knows what we really need.  Thank you for all of your prayers.

A couple years ago Everett Sylwanowicz bet me the sun would shine on our Peace Mosaic at the Summer Solstice.  I thought this impossible because of the angle of the church…… He won the bet.  June 21 is the Summer Solstice so why not walk the Labyrinth before or after worship this Sunday and enjoy the sunshine on the Mosaic.  It’s a delight to see so many different community people walking the Labyrinth during the week.  The world is always turning – may it keep turning toward the Light.

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Good News, 06.06.10

Friends:

Never succumb to feelings of loneliness.  No matter where you are, God is close by.  Remember:  Feeling distant from God is subjective, not objective; it is just your own feeling, not reality. – Rebbe Nachman of Breslov

This Sunday we will incorporate some of the wisdom of Yoga within our worship.  Yoga literally means to yoke the vitality of the Spirit through the breath.  You can anticipate gifts of healing, cleansing, the renewing of energy, calm and peace this Sunday.  Bring your yoga mat if you are a practitioner!

We were certainly blessed by the musical gifts of Destiny Muhammad and Tarika Lewis and the Nubian Strings this past Sunday.  They graciously opened our community heart to the crucified and resurrecting mystery of the Holy Trinity.  Thank you for all the prayers offered for our Catechumens Jeanie, Susanna, Libby and Gil throughout this church year.   They have now entered the realm of the Mystagogues and would love to talk with you about this.

Congratulations to Grandma Sue Field on the birth of grandson Liam!  All in the family are healthy and happy.

Please keep in your prayers: Pr. Elizabeth and Curt and family members on the death of her father, Joyce El Mogazi, Taylor, Sheila, Doug, Georgia,  Karen, Randy and DeeAnn, Pat Huseby, Jerry Slater, our hospital chaplains, Sheila, Judy, Micky and Jonathan, Sue Worthington, the unemployed,  Baha’i Leaders in Iran, our VBS program, the people and environment of the Gulf Coast.

The Church Council has approved a Feasibility Study Project to enhance the existing Memorial Garden by adding a Columbarium and a Memorial Wall.  A Columbarium is a wall of niches, each capable of holding two urns containing cremated remains of the deceased.  The Memorial Wall contains plaques which commemorates those buried elsewhere.  Homecoming Inc. of Scottsdale Arizona is a 20 year old company that provides Columbarium Systems, Products, and Services.  This company will make a Presentation at Peace on Thursday June 10th @ 7PM.  Please plan to attend and learn more about this important new ministry.   Dana Squire for the Committee

On July 10 and 11, I’m walking in the Avon Breast Cancer Walk in San Francisco.  Since January I’ve been walking to prepare for this.  On Saturday, July 10 I’ll walk a marathon – 26.2 miles.  That night I’ll sleep in a tent – sadly there’s no way to train for that challenge – and then on Sunday I’ll walk another 13.1 miles.  That’s 39.3 miles in a weekend.
I’ve pulled together a team from work and we’re pooling our fundraising efforts and encouraging each other.  We have a website where you can contribute or, if sending money over the internet makes you uncomfortable, I can send you coupons to send in with a donation.  The website is:
http://info.avonfoundation.org/site/TR/Walk/SanFrancisco?px=5311583&pg=personal&fr_id=1950Thank you, Christy Winter

A Dream Circle exploring the insights and truths of our dreams begins this week at Peace.  It will be led by Bruce Silverman.  Chanting, drumming, connecting with our longings and community will also be a part of this work.  Ready to discover more dimensions of your life?  Join in.  Watch Sunday’s bulletin for further details.

A Reflection on the Tragedy in the Gulf:

I am watching unbelievable pictures tonight of endless swaths of brown oil mixed with the blue waters of the Gulf of Mexico, of dying wetlands and marshes, of miles of contaminated coastlines, of dead birds and animals, of helpless and hopeless Gulf Coast residents sadly witnessing their livelihoods and their lives slipping away.  We have to change our language.  This isn’t a “spill”, it is an environmental catastrophe.

Theologically, we are witnessing a massive despoiling of God’s creation. We were meant to be stewards of the Gulf of Mexico, the wetlands that protect and spawn life, the islands and beaches, and all of God’s creatures who inhabit the marine world. But instead, we are watching the destruction of all that. Why? Because of the greed for profits; because of deception and lies; because of both private and public irresponsibility.

But I am also reminded of what G.K. Chesterton once said when asked what was most wrong with the world. He reportedly replied, “I am.” Already, we are hearing some deeper reflection on the meaning of this daily disaster. Almost everyone now apparently agrees with the new direction of a “clean energy economy.”  It will require a re-wiring of the energy grid But it will also require a re-wiring of ourselves — our demands, requirements, and insatiable desires. Our oil addiction has led us to environmental destruction, endless wars, and the sacrifice of young lives, and it has put our very souls in jeopardy.

There is not one answer to this calamity; there are many: corporate responsibility, for a change; serious government regulation, for a change; public accountability, for a change; and real civic mobilization to protect the endangered waters, coasts, species, and people’s livelihoods. But at a deeper level, we literally need a conversion of our habits of the heart, our energy sources, and our lifestyle choices. And somebody will need to lead the way toward what the Bible calls stewardship. What about our community of faith?  Jim Wallis

Blessings, Pr. Steve