Good News, 05.12.11

Friends:

The rulers of this world love to lord it over others, they like to make their ‘authority’ felt.  (They think they are Somebody if they step on nobodies.)  Not so with you.  If you would be great – serve others;  if you want to be first then become last.   So it is with the Son of Man – who authors life with understanding, compassion and wisdom.  -Jesus, mostly.

Such joy in celebrating our Small and Tall Worship!  Our thanks to the Youth Group for dramatically sharing the Gospel, to Sarah Kath for preparing the Prayer of the Day, and to Prs. Margareta and Anita for creating and leading this delightful service.

A Mother’s Day GiftUrban Legend exposed: In numerous studies scientists see no effect on kids’ behavior from eating sugar in any form.  In one study some moms were told their sons got a big helping of sugar and others were told their sons got a placebo. When researchers had mothers interact with their kids and asked about what happened, moms who thought their boys were amped up on a sugar high rated their children as being significantly more hyperactive than the other mothers did.  The catch:  None of the kids actually got any sugar.  Just thinking that a child had sugar makes parents see worse behavior the study concluded.

On the other hand – children who receive spiritual nurture and live on a balanced diet of the Sacraments tend to grow into happiness, self-understanding, wisdom, courage and compassion; they are kinder to themselves, willing to encourage others (especially losers), laugh at absurdity more, are willing to find hope in dark times, enjoy rest and experience peace in surprising times and circumstances.  When older they tend to appreciate their parents more.  No studies have conclusively documented this phenomenon but 2,000 years of practice have revealed the trustworthiness of this path.

Thanks to Mackenzie Dobson for organizing the Car Wash with the Youth Group and friends this past Sunday and providing support for servicemen and women and their families.

The Pacific Choir under the direction of Jaesung and Hyunjung  Choi will join us for worship this Sunday, May 15.   The choir consists of 12 – 15 young people who are learning the intricacies of choral music.  Please honor them with your presence.

Next Monday, May 16 at 6:30 pm at Peace is the 2nd Soul/ Food Organic Extravaganza!  And it’s Free!!  The official launching of Soul/Food Connections began with an Organic Feast at Peace two months ago.  The evening was composed of delicious foods, background information about CSAs, connections with new friends from the interfaith community, and conversation about what we might create in the San Ramon Valley.  A delicious evening of conversation, connections with new friends, healthy food and spirit await you!

Since then we have met with organic farmers, visited and picnicked at Terra Bella Farm in Sunol, experienced the CSA at Temple Isaiah, organized committees and our 2011 priorities, created our website, consulted with the Table Project, arranged speakers to address our congregations this Sunday on May 15, planned special summer activities for our youth, begun to receive memberships in our CSA, prepared a Training Session for volunteers on May 22, and arranged for our rotating ‘Market’ to begin on June 5 at DCC.  The Market will come to Peace during August and September.  The food will be provided by farms that are certified organic by CCOF, selected by our lead farmer, Shawn Seufert from Terra Bella Family Farm.   (Signup forms are on our Soul/Food website at:  www.earthfaithfood.wordpress.com.)  Please join us on May 16 and bring your friends.  Your RSVP is necessary for our preparations:   Call our office at 925-648-7000 or email office@peacejourney.org.

Congratulations to April and Matt Rasmussen who are pregnant!

Please keep in your prayers: our children, all the moms, those who mourn the loss of loved ones, families experiencing Alzheimers or Parkinsons, the unemployed and underemployed, those facing addictions, those in war zones, the poor, the people of Syria who are living and dying in their nonviolent uprising.

Join Destiny Disrupted for a lively Book Study conversation this Sunday, May 15 at 6:00 pm.  A great opportunity to learn about the history of Islam!  On May 22 (following the Benefit Concert for Japan) Imam Amer Araim will join us to co-lead the final session with Deacon Gil Jardine.  You may want to get a copy of his book on the 50 Key Questions of Islam.

A Pair of Jeans presents a Benefit Concert of Hope and Meditation for Japan on Sunday, May 22 at 4:30 pm.  The concert will include beautiful music, images and poetry.  Gerry Grosz, one of our jazz musicians will be present with this wife Michiyo.  She was in Japan during the Tsunami and will share personal stories from that experience.  Thrivent will provide Matching Funds through Church World Service who is providing shelter and care for 25,000 people in 100 Evacuation Sites near Fukushima.  This is an opportunity to be present to the suffering of others while offering our prayers, hope and support.  Please invite friends to join you for this blessed occasion.  A reception follows.

True Authority (like wisdom) is subtle and profound…..no need to dominate or enforce;
there is no way to describe it….we can only describe the appearance of true authorities:
They are careful as someone crossing an iced-over stream in Springtime.
Alert as a warrior in enemy territory.
Courteous as a guest.
Fluid as melting ice.
Receptive as a valley.
Clear as a glass of water.
Can you remain calm and still until wisdom emerges from within?
Then you will truly author life that is real.  -Tao te Ching, mostly

Blessings,  Pr. Steve