Good News, 08.21.2011

Friends:

My sisters and brothers, I implore you by God’s mercy to offer your very selves to God:  a living sacrifice, dedicated and fit for God’s acceptance, the worship offered by mind and heart.  Adapt yourselves no longer to the pattern of this present world, but let your minds be remade and your whole nature thus transformed.  Then you will be able to discern the yearning of God, and to know what is good, acceptable and mature.  (Romans 12: 1-2)

Our condolences to Nancy Carlston, Jeanne and Pete, Julie and George and all the family on the death of Ron. A loss for us all.   There will be a Viewing at Peace this Tuesday evening from 6 – 8 pm.   The funeral service honoring the life of Ron will be held on Wednesday, August 24 at 1:00 pm.  The Carlstons welcome all their friends from Peace and offer their gratitude for all of your prayers.

Next Sunday will be our Pilgrimage Service in which we will Walk the Labyrinth for the Eucharist.  Please bring a hat, shades and comfy shoes as we walk on our Journey into God.

Congratulations to Ro Lo Bianco on the successful defense of his Master’s Thesis!  We thank you, the frogs thank you, the creation thanks you (can never get enough advocates) and probably Parisa thanks you most of all!

Ki Altemus Memorial Service will be on Sunday, August 28 at 2:30 pm at Piedmont Gardens in Oakland.   Carpooling is being arranged.  Call our office if you wish to attend.

The Reggae Love Fest is just a week away – Aug. 28 from 4 -7 pmNative Elements is touted as the best reggae band in the Bay Area!  This is a wonderful opportunity to invite friends to share a beautiful, relaxing afternoon with you.  Great food is coming your way too.  Thanks to those who have volunteered to assist the Planning Committee (Carol Baraka, Julie and Robert Arnone). Last minute volunteers are encouraged to arrive by 3:15 pm. Please bring extra Lawn Chairs if you have them.

Gratitude to Amar and Sybomar Khalsa and friend Eric and Kelly for their music leadership this morning.   If you would like additional chant music for home use, their son Ram Dass (an equally gifted musician) has just produced his first CD – The Alchemist’s Prayer. 5 copies will be available at worship next week.

“For the beauty of the earth and sky, beloved.
For the beauty of the fire and flow, beloved.
I will know you, I will know.”

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Good News, 08.18.2011

Friends:

Make us worthy, Lord to serve others throughout the world who live and die in poverty or hunger.  Give them, through our hands, this day their daily bread; and by our understanding give them love, peace and joy. – Mother Teresa

It was a marvelous joy to celebrate the Wedding of Emily and Dan Trubey-Weller last Saturday.  Such a blessing to have so many Peace People present to share in the Eucharistic Feast of Love.

Please keep the family of Ki Altemus in your prayers as they and we mourn her death.  Ki was a long time member of Peace and her Memorial Service will be at Piedmont Gardens in Oakland on Sunday, August 28 at 2:30 pm.  Carpool arrangements can be made for any who would like to attend.

This Sunday our Sikh friends Amar and Sybomar Khalsa will share the music of Sanskrit Chant with us.  Always a gift to have them return to Peace.  This music will lovingly open your heart.

On these next two Sundays Council will ask for your decision regarding our proposal to change our Worship time to 9:30 am and Sunday School/Adult Education to 11:10 with our Hospitality Time from 10:45 – 11:10.

The Pet Festival Committee will have a  short 10-15 minute meeting after worship this Sunday. A brief review of where we are and some additional assignments will compose our agenda.  Please speak with Greg Grebe if you are willing to assist.

The Reggae Love Fest is only 10 days away on August 28 (from 4 – 7 pm).  This is a gift a gift to the larger community to remind them that relaxing and enjoying music and the company of good friends are gifts of God too.  10 couples from Peace and two individuals have signed up as Sponsors for this event, raising over $1,000.  If 4 or 5 more of you wish to honor the love of your life with the gift of $100 it would be graciously accepted. (This helps defray the cost of our 10 piece band Native Elements).  All should know that Dana and Joan Squire have gone over the top by giving $130 in honor of their 13 years of marriage!  Spread the word – there will be burgers, dogs, organic food and a tantalizing Caribbean Drink  for the occasion.   If you would like to assist with mental or muscle work for the day, please speak with Carol Barake or Robert and Julie Arnone.  “Keep it cool, Mon!”

Our thanks to Mark Miller for his excellent presentation on the US Deficit Crisis:  Facts, Fallacies and Fixes.  Copies of his materials are available.  A few people have requested that he offer this again.  I will let you know if this can happen.

Please keep in your prayers:  Ron, Ralph, Margo, Lillian Bob, Sheila, Joan, April and Janelle, those living with addictions;  Parkinson’s; the people starving in East Africa.

I was musing on the variety of music and musicians which Peace has hosted over the years.  What pure delight:  the Guest Classical Artists (young and old) whom Sue Field has brought our way; Amazonian flute (and dancers); Classical Persian Concerts; Shakuhachi Flute;  Israeli songs and dance; a Tympanie concert;  Drumming celebrations; Japanese Koto; Jazz –(Latin, orchestral, Innovative).  We are blessed!  (Please remind me of others you have enjoyed and I have not included.)

The movie I mentioned last Sunday was Babette’s Feast. Outstanding and well worth watching.
[Website Admin’s (Anita) note: Babette’s Feast is Pr. Anita’s favorite movie of ALL time!]

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Good News, 08.11.2011

Friends:

Every midwife knows that not until the womb softens
can the child find the opening to be born.

Soften the treasure of your heart, my Friend,
so that the opening may be discovered
and the dark pain you carry may gracefully lead you to the never-ending grace.

Congratulations to Susanna and Raddi El Mogazi on the birth of Marguerite Joyce.  We rejoice in her birth and that everyone is doing well.

Our thanks to Katie Walda and the Centerpointe Presbyterian Choir for their enriching musical gifts this past Sunday.  Gary Sponholtz will join us this Sunday.

Dan Trubey and Emily Weller invite you to their Wedding this Saturday, August 13 at 4:00 pm.  A celebration not to be missed!

The Earth/Faith/Food Market began its term at Peace last Sunday and will be here for the next 2 months.  Such a lovely setting and delicious array of organic produce.

Greg Grebe invites those who are willing to assist in coordinating our St. Francis Animal Blessing and Pet Festival to meet with him the Gathering Hall this Sunday at 9:30 am.

Walking the Labyrinth on August 28: The seed of mindfulness is in each of us, but we usually forget to water it.  We think happiness is only possible in the future when we get the things we need.  Many people have passed exams and bought houses and cars , yet they are still unhappy.  What is important is to find peace and share it with others.  This you can do by walking peacefully.  Everything depends on your steps.  (Thich Nhat Hanh)

For those of you who would like to contribute to Drought Relief in East Africa, we are directing our support through Lutheran World Relief (LWR). You can donate online at lwr.org/donate or by sending a check to:  Lutheran World Relief, PO Box 17061, Baltimore, MD 21298 or by placing your check in the Special Offering this Sunday.   Please note on your check:  East Africa Drought fund.

Gandhi after Hiroshima August 6, 1945:  It is fairly simple to count the cost of the atom bomb on the population of that city. It will require a longer time to assess the damage to the soul of the nation that dropped the bomb.

Mark Miller (former President and Treasurer of Peace) will lead a Deficit Discussion Group this Sunday at 9:00 am on the U.S. Budget Crisis:  Facts, Fallacies and Fixes. Here is a little of Mark’s background so you know how valuable this discussion will be.  Mark spent 25 years in private industry and government research and management as a physicist. He published 40 technical research papers and was awarded 7 patents; worked eleven years experience as a senior equity analyst in tech hardware stocks; was twice recognized in Wall Street Journal’s annual “Best on the Street” survey for performance of computer peripheral stock recommendations, ranked #1 in 2005. He is currently ranked number #1 by Starmine for performance of stock selections in electronic and electrical instruments group. His research has been cited in the press by the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Dailey (IBD), Forbes, etc. Four times over the past two months his research has been cited in IBD articles. Undergrad and graduate degrees in Physics, MBA in finance. Elected to Delta Gamma Sigma national business honorary society. Please join us!

God arises in the divine assembly and judges in the midst of the gods:
“How long will you defend the unjust and favor the cause of the wicked?”

Defend the poor and the orphaned; render justice to the afflicted and the oppressed.
Rescue the lowly and the poor; from the clutches of the wicked deliver them.
They have neither knowledge nor understanding- they walk about blindly.
All the order of the world is shaken.

I said: “You are gods, all of you.  Yet like mortals you shall die – fall like every ruler.”
Rise, O God; judge the earth, for yours are all the nations.  (Psalm 82)

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Good News, 08.04.2011

Friends:

Every request I make of God is a message telling of my neediness, of my trust in God, of my willing dependence and openness to receive. Prayer is the moment in life where we need not fear to express ourselves in all our vulnerability and imperfection. God already knows; it is we who need to be informed. – (Towards God, Michael Casey)

Family Camp – This week …. One night down and one to go!
We have a fun evening on Wednesday munching tacos while tossing sand, rolling marbles, and dropping pennies. And now there’s one more chance for you to join us for a deeee-licious dinner and fun times!

Friday, August 5
6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Begin your weekend with a church yard picnic! We’ll be serving up a hot dog dinner followed by an evening of play! Croquet, badminton, horse shoes and table games! Before we call it a night we’ll be loading up at the Make-your-own-Sundae table!

Join in the action or sit on the sidelines. What you do is up to you. We just want to see you there!
What to Bring: You. Your family. Your friends. And a comfortable lawn chair suitable for kicking back and relaxing in the cool of the evening with friends. Everything else provided!

If you haven’t already, please take a few minutes to read this letter about our upcoming Sunday morning worship time change along with a reflection on Baptismal Promises.

The Reggae Love Fest is on for August 28 from 4 – 7 pm in the Courtyard at Peace.  You’ll love the 10 piece reggae band Native Elements.  You can download and print out a flyer for this event here.

Upcoming Earth/Faith/Food CSA trainings:  The CSA market produce delivery will move to Peace Lutheran Church during August and September. Peace volunteers will be assisted by members of the Baha’i Assembly. On Tuesday evening August 2 from 7:30-8:30, Rebecca Calahan Klein will come to Peace Lutheran Church and walk through the set-up process for the next Sunday CSA. Future volunteers are also welcome.

This Sunday Katie Walda and 18 members of the Centerpointe Presbyterian Choir will join us and assist in leading our worship. They will present a delightful and uplifting summer worship gift to all of us. Please honor these guests – who are traversing upon this arduous venture all the way from Pleasanton – with your presence, prayers and encouragement.

Our thanks to Greg Collins for his presentation on the Drought in East Africa this past Sunday. How God weeps for all God’s children who are wasting away. Economics, drought, politics – yes, but most poignantly these consequences are allowed by those who are spiritually wasting away. Click here to download a listing of AID Groups Working in East Africa.

Deficit Discussion Group: Mark Miller will lead a discussion on the U.S. Budget Crisis: Facts, Fallacies and Fixes on Sunday, August 14th at 9:00am. Please join us for fresh views on this important topic.

Our thanks to Pr. Elizabeth for preaching these past two Sundays. She is going to take this next Sunday off so Bible 365 will resume on August 14.

Bev and I had a marvelous time in Montana with our sons. Vacations are a good thing. I hope you are able to enjoy one.

Blessings, Pr. Steve