Friends:

This age of environmental crisis and political divisiveness challenges us to break open our minds and hearts and bodies to the fullness of the beauty and the suffering before us. It is upon us to nourish our bodies and souls, so that we may care for the well-being of others as fully as we can, and so that we may dedicate our strength to co-creating the world that is always be-coming––a world of balance and justice, fecundity, equity, and interconnection–-by whatever loving means possible.”   ~ Rabbi Diane Elliot

From Brenda Bos (former seminarian at Peace):  I should have reached out at the time this 30th Ordination Anniversary article came out. I loved it and marvelled at God putting you and I together when I was at PLTS. Just started my 2nd call. Assistant to the bishop in southwest California. Guy Erwin and I do not take it for granted the positions we inhabit. Thanks for writing this piece. And for being there to begin with!

Water:  Our Disaster Preparedness Team has launched a year long educational campaign to equip members and friends of Peace resources that would be needed in the time of a crisis.  Water is the first and most pressing issue in California!  Philippa gave us an excellent presentation and recommendation for 5 gallon canisters – that we can purchase for a fine discount – by March 4.  A few details:  The Lamorinda CERT group obtains 5 gallon (or barrels) canisters that are 25% less than those offered on Amazon.  You can place your order on their website:  www.lamorindacert.org – OR we will assist you in placing an order after worship on Sundays.  Either way the price is the same.  (Click on the tab labelled “Resources”.)  Arrangements will also need to be made to pick the canisters up on March 13 or 14.  We will make those arrangements later.

The Early Communion Class began this past Sunday with 6 children and parents participating.  Please keep all of us in your prayers.

A Proposal from the Peace Council to establish an Interfaith Deacon member of our Church Council:  ProposalThe Interfaith Deacon shall be responsible for building relations with I-SRV (our Interfaith Partners); educate and encourage Peace members to participate in interfaith Dialogue and Activities (e.g. Storytelling); and be the advocate nourishing our understanding and commitment to the larger spiritual community.  Our Annual Meeting is February 2 after worship.  We will vote on this proposal then.

Observe the flow of the Spirit —  A Message from our friend Buddhist monastic Venerable Tenzin Chogkyi:  I have just been invited to share stories of my work teaching the Stanford Compassion Training to incarcerated folks at a conference at Vanderbilt University Divinity School this March. Jorge (one of our Mandala artists)  was in this class, and he and the others have such moving stories about how this training enabled them to open up, and feel empathy and compassion towards not only the people they are surrounded by, but also family members, and their abusers (almost all are trauma survivors).  I asked Jorge’s group to write something I can read at the conference, in either English or Spanish, and I expect to be fighting back tears as I read their words!

I will also have a chance to go into death row in a prison in Nashville with one of the friends who invited me to this conference. He is an ethics professor at the Divinity School and has started taking the students from his classes in to death row to do sessions with the men there, and has been asking my advice about this, as prison work is new to him. Just amazing the work that is happening.

See the movie Just Mercy!

Humor in light of the 30th Anniversary:   “The Bible contains 6 admonishments to homosexuals and 362 admonishments to heterosexuals. That doesn’t mean that God doesn’t love heterosexuals. It’s just that they need more supervision.”    — Lynn Lavner

Friday Films:  Happy!  Friday Jan 31:  6:30p Dinner, 7:30p Film ~  Back by popular demand…  How do most people define happiness? A NY Times article listed the US as the 23rd happiest country in the world. Hollywood director Tom Shadyac (Liar Liar, Patch Adams, Bruce Almighty) read it and asked Academy Award nominated filmmaker Roko Belic to make a documentary about happiness. It combines cutting-edge science with real-life stories and takes us on a kind of cultural travelogue on the happiness trail through 14 countries. Join us for one of Kenny’s roast chicken dinners at 6:30, film at 7:30. Run time 73 minutes; unrated.

ANNUAL MEETING:  Sunday, Feb 2 ~ Following Worship

Jazz Church West – Second Sunday Feb 9, 5:00p with the Glen Pearson Quartet

Epiphany Wisdom and Grace,

Pr. Steve

 

 

Pastor’s Blog/Grace Waves 01.09.2020

Friends:

“How many things have to happen to you before it occurs to you…..maybe I could change?” Robert Frost, adapted

Skype Call with our Prayer Partners in Nicaragua – THIS SUNDAY after worship! Finally a chance to meet our Prayer Partners face to face. This will be the first of occasional Skype Calls with our Hermanamiento/Partners in Laurel Galan, Nicaragua. This Sunday we get acquainted. In the future we will begin to share more of our community life with each other. Anticipate a wonderful blessing!

Disaster Preparedness at Peace: Saturday, January 11 at 4 pm the Committee (18 people) will meet to look at the multiple needs that msut be addressed to ensure good caring for our members and the community around us should there be a crisis of any sort. Already Philippa, Austin, Bev and Margaret have received wise counsel from the Red Cross. Much more to come! All are welcomed to participate.

New Member Dinner this Sunday at 4:30 at Peace. Ken is cooking, Diana and Howard are assisting. It is always a joy to get further acquainted with new friends at Peace.

Keep in your prayers: Susan and her mother, Betty, the people of Australia, for a year of Clear Vision, those who pray for us, children who are vulnerable, those dancing near the edge.

The Peace Mosaic Mandala Project is gracefully moving ahead. Jennifer Mitchell’s visit stirred many new connections. The Tibetan Buddhist project with a prisoner in Soledad is proceeding slowly but surely. New Mandalas with the Hindu community, Islamic Center, Taoist practicioners and Sikh friends have been initiated. What a marvelous interweaving of our lives and spiritual understanding this creative process gives us. And such a beautiful way to manifest Peace with our interfaith friends in this world.

Compassionate Storytelling: Charlene is coordinating 2 Presentations at St. Joan of Arc for their GIFT Educational program on January 16 at 10 am and January 22 at 7 pm. Both workshops are free and worthy of your participation.

Tattoos on the Heart – Fr. Greg Boyle , author of “Tattoos” will speak for the conclusion of the GIFT Series at St. Joan’s on Sunday, January 26 at 3:30. Shall a contingent of Peace folks carpool together??

From a Jazz Lover: Jazz has always been a moving experience for us. I think I shared the story that after Sunday morning and mid-day activities and returning to the house and putting our feet up for a short spell, we look at each other and ask, “do we really want to go to Jazz.” Every time the answer is yes ! Though it would be nice to hang around the house and chill, we go to Jazz because it has never disappointed, i.e. we always walk away saying, “Wow, we are glad we came.” This last Sunday was really excellent – Start to Finish. Thanks.

Epiphany blessings,
Pr. Steve

Pastor’s Blog/Grace Waves 01.02.2020

Friends:  Welcome in the New Year with an Epiphany Open House at the home of Pastor Steve and Bev Harms!  Saturday, January 4th  ~  3:00 – 6:00p

¨ JAN 4 CHORAL AUDACITY Concert, FREE! at Peace Lutheran; Saturday, January 4, 7:00p

¨ HONEY from the Monastery! $7/each; $20/3; $75/case. Multiple flavors available.

 

¨ JAN 5: Jazz Church West with the Erik Jekabson Quintet

¨ JAN 9: Meditation (6:00p) and Taiji (7:00p) – new series begins

 

¨ JAN 11: Disaster Prep meeting; 4:00p at Peace
¨ JAN 12: New Member Dinner; SUN 4:30p. If you’d like to have a conversation with Pastor Steve about joining in advance of the dinner, please contact him: Steve@PeaceJourney.org or 925648.7000

Pastor’s Blog / Grace Waves 12.11.19

Friends:

This will be our reply to violence:  to make music, more intensely, more beautifully, more devotedly than ever before.”     ~ Leonard Bernstein

~ And mercy did we ever make Intense, Profound, Joyful Music at our Pure Delight Concert!  Gratitude to the Pacific Choir, Junior Choir, Hyunjung and Jaesung Choi, Jiwon Evelyn Kwark, Tiffany Austin, and the Anton Schwartz Quartet for immersing us in the grace and beauty of the Christmas Season.

 ~ Margaret Bender died this past Monday.  Her Memorial Service will be on Friday, December 20 at 11 am at Peace.  Please keep Nancy, Janet and Charlie in your prayers.

¨ Sun Dec 22, 7:00p: Annual Sing-A-Long Messiah!

Come one come all to Peace Lutheran Church to sing along and enjoy glorious music! Tickets: $15 at the door; Children under 10 are free; Reception following.

~ Sing Along Messiahevent help!   – If you are willing to assist with Ushering or a Light Reception, please let me know.

~ Sunday, Dec 22 | 5:30-7:30 pm | Blackhawk Plaza  Community-Wide Chanukah Celebration:  

~ Honey from the Monastery is selling quickly this year.  If you wish to purchase honey for gifts the cost for a case of 12 Jars is $75.

~ Due to special circumstances Peace is hosting an additional 20+ AA Group Meetings during the Christmas holiday season.  If you know people who need a meeting, invite them to attend one of the Peace Meetings happening morning, noon and night. (Meeting times noted on our website calendar)  Keep these friends and members of our families in your prayers.

~ Our friend John Brett works with the Gubbio Project in the Tenderloin which grew out of the Night Ministry.  Please enjoy the enclosed article so perfect for this time of year when the Child seeks a home among us.

https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/heatherknight/article/Exhausted-SF-homeless-stretch-out-in-Tenderloin-14894239.php

~ Christmas Schedule!

12/24 5:00p Children & family worship
12/24 10:00p Communion and Candle light
12/25 10:00a Christmas Day Worship

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Pastor’s Blog/Grace Waves 12.04.19

Friends:

The heavens proclaim your Glory, Holy One;

and the cosmos reveals the work of your hands.

Day takes up the story, night makes known your message

no speech, no word, no voice is heard…

yet their silent praise permeates the universe.  ~Psalm 18

¨ Bring your Giving Tree Gifts this Sunday, Dec 8th! The Shelter Inc children thank you!  Please remember to bring your gifts unwrapped
¨ Sat Dec 7, 4:00p: Justice Committee will meet at the Harms home.
¨ Our thanks to Shree & Subha for delivering Thanksgiving Food to the Berkeley homeless of People’s Park. They were able to feed more than 30 people!

~ Wednesdays in Advent! – Taize Services will again be offered on Wednesday evening at San Damiano from 7- 8pm with our own Gary Sponholtz and friends

¨ Tyme for Tea:  We will meet at Peace at 10:00am, carpool for our Tea at 11a.  

~ The Pure Delight Christmas Concert: December 8th ~ 5:00 pm.
Our 7th Year Concert will include Jazz artists for the first time: Anton Schwartz, sax, and Vocalist Tiffany Austin, along with Classical Violinist Jiwon Kwark. Will be outstanding!
Our Artist in Residence Pacific Choir will perform with warmth and beauty and the Junior Choir will melt your hearts. Director Hyunjung Choi has prepared a Concert of Pure Delight. CCIH will be the Beneficiary so Tom and Linda Hall who represent Peace on their Board will be promoting in those circles. Come one, come all – – the Jazz crowd, Interfaith friends, and Korean Community are all invited. Spread the word – invite friends to experience the rich cultural life of Peace with you!  Tickets: $25/person * $45/two * $60/Family of 4

¨ Sun Dec 22, 7:00p: Annual Sing-A-Long Messiah! Come one come all to Peace Lutheran Church to sing along and enjoy glorious music! Tickets: $15 at the door; Children under 10 are free; Reception following.

¨ Honey from the Monastery is available! $7/per each, 3 for $20, a full case for $75 – Multiple flavors available, including new Almond ~ they are delicious!!

¨ Christmas Schedule! 

  • 12/24  5:00p  Children & family worship
  • 12/24 10:00p Communion and Candle light
  • 12/25 10:00a Christmas Day Worship

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Pastor’s Blog / Grace Waves 11.27.19

Friends:

Unforgettable Shoes

Pairs strewn and separated

Sizes and styles intermixed

Layers upon layers

Belonging to women, men, and their children

Piercing smell of earth’s dust

Mingling with perspiration of sacrificed persons

Burned in futile endeavor

Of maintaining separate, superior illusion.

Written about the collection of shoes at the United States Holocaust Memorial museum on exhibit in 1997.  (Thanks to Elizabeth Hopkins-Kurz for this:  I know you appreciate this is light of last Sunday’s homily on “Stinky Feet” from Tatoos on the Heart.)

~ Thanksgiving Food for the Homeless:  (To contribute food or participate in Friday’s Thanksgiving delivery to People’s Park or telegraph Ave. in Berkeley, please call Shree at 925.699.7384

 

 

~ TONIGHT ~ 7:00p, St. Timothy’s Church:  Interfaith Thanksgiving Service

 

 

 

 

Sunday, December 1:  Jazz Church West Full Tilt Season 15 continues with the Fred Randolph Quintet!  5:00p, FREE

~ The Pure Delight Christmas Concert: December 8th ~ 5:00 pm.
Our 7th Year Concert will include Jazz artists for the first time: Anton Schwartz, sax, and Vocalist Tiffany Austin along with Classical Violinist Jiwon Kwark. Will be outstanding!
Our Artist in Residence Pacific Choir will perform with warmth and beauty and the Junior Choir will melt your hearts. Director Hyunjung Choi will prepare a Concert of pure delight.  CCIH will be the Beneficiary so Tom and Linda Hall who represent Peace on their Board will be promoting in those circles.
The Jazz Crowd, Interfaith friends and Korean Community are also invited. Spread the word – invite friends to experience the rich cultural life of Peace with you!
Tickets: $25/person   *   $45/two   *   $60/Family of 4

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Pastor’s Blog/Grace Waves 11.22.19

Friends:

¨ TODAY! FRI Nov 22, 6:30p: Friday Films! ~ 6:30p Dinner, 7:30p film: When Do We Eat?  a 2006 film about Strict patriarch Ira Stuckman (Michael Lerner) experiences the heights of the Jewish faith  — literally — after being slipped  some Ecstasy during the family’s Passover Seder meal. The once-gruff and critical Ira embraces the spirit of the holiday, vowing to guide his contentious clan toward forgiveness and harmony. Jack Klugman co-stars in director Salvador Litvak’s over-the-top dysfunctional domestic comedy. Hilarious and Rabbi Dan approved!

¨ Wed, Nov 27 7:00p, Interfaith Thanksgiving Celebrated at St. Timothy’s, Wed Nov 27th, 7:00p. Bring cookies/goodies for the reception; canned goods for the food bank, and an offering for the homeless.

¨ Sat Dec 7, 4:00p: Justice Committee will meet at the Harms home.

¨ Sun Dec 1, 5:00p: Jazz Church West ~ with the Fred Randolph Quintet!

¨ Sun Dec 1, Advent begins! – Taize Services will again be offered on Wednesday evening at San Damiano from 7- 8pm with our own Gary Sponholtz and friends

¨ Thur Dec 5, 7:00p: Rabbi Tirzah Firestone, Ph.D. ~ Join us at Beth Chaim as we bring renowned Jewish thinker Rabbi Tirzah Firestone into our community to discuss particular challenges modernity poses to the Jewish people.

¨ Sun Dec 8, 5:00p: Pure Delight Christmas Concert ~ Jazz Fusion with artists Anton Schwartz and Tiffany Austin; and classical violinist Jiwon Evelyn Kwark.  Beautiful Music, an evening not to be missed – Invite your friends!

¨ Sun Dec 22, 7:00p: Annual Sing-A-Long Messiah! ~ Come one come all to Peace Lutheran Church to join, sing and enjoy glorious music! Tickets: $15. Children under 10 are free; Reception following.

¨ Sat Jan 11, 4:00p: Disaster Prep group will meet Jan 11th; 4:00p. There are already 18 people participating!

¨ Honey from the Monastery is available! $7/per each, 3 for $20, a full case for $75 – Multiple flavors available, including new Almond ~ they are delicious!!

It’s Stewarding Month!   (pledge cards available in the Gathering Hall; request to be mailed office@peacejourney.org)

 

~ The Pure Delight Christmas Concert: December 8th ~ 5:00 pm.
Our 7th Year Concert will include Jazz artists for the first time: Anton Schwartz, sax, and Vocalist Tiffany Austin along with Classical Violinist Jiwon Kwark. Will be outstanding!
Our Artist in Residence Pacific Choir will perform with warmth and beauty and the Junior Choir will melt your hearts. Director Hyunjung Choi will prepare a Concert of pure delight.  CCIH will be the Beneficiary so Tom and Linda Hall who represent Peace on their Board will be promoting in those circles.
The Jazz Crowd, Interfaith friends and Korean Community are also invited. Spread the word – invite friends to experience the rich cultural life of Peace with you!
Tickets: $25/person   *   $45/two   *   $60/Family of 4

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Pastor’s Blog/Grace Waves 11.15.19

Friends:

“Christ has no body now but yours.
No hands, no feet on earth but yours.
Christ looks compassion into the world.
Yours are the feet with which Christ walks to do good.
Yours are the hands with which Christ blesses the world.”
St. Teresa of Avila

~ November is Stewarding Month! From your Stewarding Deacon (pledge cards available in the Gathering Hall; request to be mailed office@peacejourney.org)

 

~ The Pure Delight Christmas Concert: December 8th ~ 5:00 pm.
Our 7th Year Concert will include Jazz artists for the first time: Anton Schwartz, sax, and Vocalist Tiffany Austin along with Classical Violinist Jiwon Kwark. Will be outstanding!
Our Artist in Residence Pacific Choir will perform with warmth and beauty and the Junior Choir will melt your hearts. Director Hyunjung Choi will prepare a Concert of pure delight.  CCIH will be the Beneficiary so Tom and Linda Hall who represent Peace on their Board will be promoting in those circles.
The Jazz Crowd, Interfaith friends and Korean Community are also invited. Spread the word – invite friends to experience the rich cultural life of Peace with you!
Tickets: $25/person   *   $45/two   *   $60/Family of 4

Blessings, Pr. Steve

Pastor’s Blog 11.08.19

Friends:

“The living are few and the dead abound in this life — the dead being those who never let go and can’t walk away from themselves into love or laughter.” Christian Bobin

 

All Saints Questions
Whose wisdom significantly marks the path of life you have taken?
Who stood by you and moved you through troublesome times?
Whose spirituality or theology has guided and grounded your own?
Who brought you steadfast love and indelible acceptance?
Who inspired and encouraged you to believe in your abilities?

~ Our traditional Thanksgiving Eve Interfaith Service will be on Wednesday, Nov. 27 at 7:00 pm at St. Timothy’s Church, 1550 Diablo Road. You are invited to bring cookies/goodies for the reception, canned goods for the Food Bank and an Offering for Shelter, Inc.

~ The Pure Delight Christmas Concert: December 8 ~ 5:00 pm.
Our 7th Year Concert will include Jazz artists for the first time: Anton Schwartz, sax, and Vocalist Tiffany Austin along with Classical Violinist Jiwon Kwark. Will be outstanding!
Our Artist in Residence Pacific Choir will perform with warmth and beauty and the Junior Choir will melt your hearts. Director Hyunjung Choi will prepare a Concert of pure delight.  CCIH will be the Beneficiary so Tom and Linda Hall who represent Peace on their Board will be promoting in those circles.
The Jazz Crowd, Interfaith friends and Korean Community are also invited. Spread the word – invite friends to experience the rich cultural life of Peace with you!
Tickets: $25/person  *  $45/couple.  *  $60/Family of 4

Blessings, Pr. Steve