Grace Waves / Pastor’s Blog 3.22.18

Friends:

“It helps now and then to step back and take the long view.  The Love of God is not only beyond our efforts; it is even beyond our vision.”  This quote (continued at the bottom of my blog)  is by Archbishop Romero of El Salvador who was assassinated on March 24, 1980 while celebrating the Eucharist because he challenged oppressors and spoke in defense of the poor.  He has recently been made an official Saint by Pope Francis.

Peace as Sanctuary:  We had a marvelous skype conversation with Javier and Kristy Herring this past Sunday.  Since 1939 LIRS/Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services has been engaged in this work! Their comprehensive picture of immigration and refugee dynamics, their clear communication and the spirit in which they conveyed the realities of our vulnerable brothers and sisters has focused and galvanized our efforts here at Peace. Those present on Sunday continued in conversation for another half hour as we sought to absorb what we learned and began to discern next steps. To continue deepening our understanding of immigrant and refugee realities, please check out their website at www.lirs.org!

Elizabeth Hunter Ashley is the featured soloist with Contra Costa Chamber Orchestra on Saturday,  March 24 at El Campanile Theater in Antioch at  2 pm; and on Sunday, March 25 at Rossmoor Fireside Room, 4:00pm.  You are welcomed to attend!

Palm Sunday initiates Holy Week this Sunday at 10 am.  We will gather in the Courtyard for our Palm Procession.  Our FORUM will continue our Peace 60th Anniversary as we look at the formation and life of All Saints (one of our predecessor churches that merged to form Peace).  If you were a member of All Saints, please come and share your personal stories!

Our “Reimagining Exodus” class with author Rabbi David Zaslow was outstanding.  We will keep working with this Exodus Theme throughout our 60th Anniversary Year.

“Reimagining Exodus” has also charged our desire to celebrate another Freedom Seder this year on Maundy Thursday, March 29 at 6:30 pm.  Last chance to sign up will be this Sunday!  Don’t miss this extraordinary Meal of Mindfulness that teaches us to Remember Who We Are and unveils the Mystery of the Eucharist.

Easter Sunday will be a Sunday rich in music and celebration.  There will be an Easter Brunch —  Suggested categories:  Egg dishes, pastries, fruit, bagels, other tasty items that you enjoy.  And of course our Egg Hunt for the children will follow our worship.  Invite friends to join and sit with you.

The Monte Vista Choir has two evening performances at Peace on Thursday and Friday of this week.  Over 500 students will be performing.  You are invited!  Friday night concert begins 7:00pm.

The Jazz Church West hosts John Calloway on Easter Day at 5:00 pm. If you love Latin Jazz your heart will be danced into the heavens!  Be cool – get jazzed.

A new Art Exhibit is ready for you.  The letters of the Hebrew Alphabet have been quilted by Barb Carpenter who created these for her Bat Mitzvat project a few years ago.  Be sure to read the inscriptions about each.  They are wonderful prayer invitations.

     Archbishop Romero:  ‘We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is God’s work.  Nothing we do is complete.  No statement says all that could be said. No prayer fully expresses our faith.  No confession brings perfection, no pastoral visit brings wholeness.  No program accomplishes the church’s mission.   Rather, we plant seeds that one day will grow.  We water seeds already planted, knowing that they hold future promise. We lay foundations that will need further development.  We provide yeast that produces effects far beyond our capabilities.  

     We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that.  We do some things and do them well.  It may be incomplete, but God’s grace enters and does the rest.  We may never see end results, but that is the difference between the master builder and the worker.  We are prophets of a future not our own.  Amen.”

Blessed Holy Week,

Pr. Steve

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