Good News, 09.02.2011

Friends:

The cynic says evil  – war, famine, betrayal, etc. – outweighs the good; hope is irrational and it would have been better if humans hadn’t been created.  Writes the great Jewish scholar Maimonides,

Such reasoning stems from narrow parochialism.  A person looks at his/her own fate, or at what happens to a friend, or at the disasters facing the whole human race and thinks:  This is decisive in the vastness of things.  Or a person finds that in their life unhappiness predominates and judges the universe from that experience.  But we are not the center of the universe, neither as individuals nor as the representatives of the whole human race.  God’s universe must be considered as one great whole composed of interrelated parts, and its majestic purpose in not the gratification of our tiny selves.”

What a blessing to Walk the Labyrinth this past Sunday and to experience the gift of our community on the journey together.  Gratitude to Jeanie Locklear and Trio con Brio for their beautiful music and to Pr. Margareta for suggesting and prompting our Pilgrimage Sunday.

The family of Ki Altemus sends their thanks for our prayers and ministry with Ki during these past years.  Please keep Ki’s family – Nancy, Dan, Rich and Bob and their families in your prayers.  The life of Ki enriched Peace.  May her transformation by baptism and her death in Christ enrich the Kingdom of God as well.

Our Reggae Love Fest proved a delight for all the participants.  The band Native Elements was outstanding and they enjoyed the spirit of the crowd who attended.  Delicious food, tasty Specialty Drinks, a chance to relax and dance made for a happy celebration and fun connections with the larger community.  Our thanks to Carol and Al Barake & Julie and Robert Arnone for coordinating this event, to the couples and persons who sponsored the Love Fest and to all the Committee folk who broke a sweat preparing, serving and cleaning up for the day!  From Chris Cortez:  “We had a wonderful time playing for you all yesterday. On behalf of the band, I wanted to thank you for your kind generosity and invitation to play for your congregation and the community in Danville. I hope that the folks who were in attendance had a good time. Please send our warmest regards to everyone who helped make the event a success.”

Jazz musician Gerry Grosz will bring his Jazz Kitchen to play for our worship this Sunday.   It promises to be a unique and marvelous celebration.

Dear Pr Steve:   As a part of my job as staff writer here at Lutheran World Relief, I check the internet for mentions of our organization. It was through this search that I discovered that Peace Journey is supporting LWR’s response to the East Africa drought. I just wanted to send a note of thanks. Through the support of communities of faith like yours, Lutheran World Relief is able to reach out to so many in East Africa with not only help for today but for the coming days as well. We believe that walking with communities in poverty, listening to them and helping them to overcome the barriers that prevent families and communities from living productive lives is our unique, God-given calling and mission. Your support makes it possible to strive toward that mission.  God bless Peace for all that you do.   Nikki Massie  Staff Writer/LUTHERAN WORLD RELIEF

Last Sunday I mentioned some of our Clergy’s talents and skills which  members may not be aware of.  Pr. Anita’s online Ministry SisterFriends offers support to lesbian women around the country.   She receives about 500 hits daily.  She provides spiritual care for women who often feel isolated and cut off from their religious communities and faith.  Peace is glad to be the congregational home hosting this ministry.   Pr. Margareta has been interviewed on numerous Swedish TV and radio programs and for national magazines regarding her Ministry with Children especially when facing death, their spirituality and pastoral care of their families.   Her ministry served international families from around the globe.  She has co-authored 3 books:  Children’s Existential Questions:  How they understand their Diseases and Dying; Ethical issues Related to Abortions (Commissioned by the Church of Sweden); and Egg Donations: Ethical Perspectives on Artificial Insemination (Commissioned by ‘Save the Children Sweden).  In addition she was selected by the Diocese of Stockholm to be trained as a Spiritual Director in 1996 which complemented her ministry as the Senior Chaplain for Women and Children at the Karolinska University Hospital.  Are we at Peace not blessed by these clergy and their gifts unimagined?

Peace will once again host the Holy Convergence on Sunday, September 18 from 2 – 5 pm.   This is an utterly unique Interfaith Festival with all of our interfaith congregations/communities/assemblies participating.  The focus this year will be on Earth/Faith/Food themes.  There will be drumming, presentations, prayer, chanting, Labyrinth walking and more.  If you wish to be involved as one of the hosts for the day please let me know.

The Pacific Choir composed of Korean youth whose debut performance was at Peace several months ago, recently sang at Herbst Theatre for a special Korean Cultural Celebration.  Congratulations to our young friends who continue to rehearse at Peace on Sunday evenings.

Congratulations to Alan and Kelly who will be married at Peace this Saturday.

Blessings,  Pr. Steve