Pastor’s Blog/Grace Waves 10.01.19


~ St. Francis Blessing of the Animals:   Sunday, October 6th!  Invite your friends, furry, feathered, scaly, winged, and even human to join in the blessings of the day.

~ Plant a daffodil bulb after worship, Sunday Oct 6th, in honor of St. Francis!

~ Art Forum – with Cathie and Sue on October 6:  Meet and enjoy the reflections of the two artists who have created our current exhibit.  (The Forgiveness Forum Series will continue later in October)

~ Please keep in your prayers:  Tim Griesbach and family on the death of his mother, Bernice; Svetlana (Lyusya’ mother); Bob, Denise, Janet, our Creation and all threatened species.

Full Tilt!  The Jazz Church West 15th Season begins on Sunday, October 6 at 5:00 pm.  Adam Shulman’s Sextet will perform works from his recent CD Full Tilt!

The Art Exhibit Rhythms of Water and Land, Love and Loss (In memory of Ruth, Linda and Don Britt) will Officially Open with Artists Cathie Weir and Sue Britt (daughters and sisters) present.

St. Joan of Arc invites you to celebrate their 40th Anniversary with them on Sunday, October 6 from Noon – 4 pm at their church in San Ramon.  We thank God for these partners in ministry through these many years!



~ The Mandala Project!  (by Jennifer) In 2006 we began a monumental project here at Peace Lutheran Church. A work of art, a gift to the community, and an ongoing, interfaith collaboration through the creation of art. The Peace Mosaic was a vision of unity designed by the late Richard Cammerer. The main mosaic was dedicated in 2008, however the project was never intended to be completed. Rather the project was designed to keep spiraling out. To be an ongoing process of collaboration and creation. To bridge communities while adding diversity and complexity to this ongoing story. In short, to continue touching as many lives as possible.

Years later we are finding that this chord we struck, is still resonating with the lager community. We are still honoring Richard’s vision with the creation of several new centerpiece mandalas. Since much of this work is going on behind the scenes, I wanted to share this special story of outreach and community building through an incarcerated Buddhist named Jorge.

In coordinating this mandala project, I was honored to be put in touch with Venerable Tenzin Chogkyi. A Buddhist nun, activist, and teacher at the Land of Medicine Buddha in Soquel, California. Tenzin is a lovely soul, who cares deeply about prison reform and social justice. She has been doing outreach in a California prison, where she has a student who took an interest in the mosaic mandala project.

After considerable planning and coordinating she received permission for Jorge (who is a wood worker in the prison wood shop) to create the Buddhist mosaic mandala. I was delighted to have his contribution to the project and committed to doing what ever it takes to make this mosaic happen! The coordination and collaboration required for this project to happen behind prison walls is immense.

In my many years of teaching mosaic, I have had students who were kids, autistic young adults, and many who have called them self, ‘non-artistic’.  But never have I had a student who I would not be able to demonstrate techniques and walk them through the process. To make things more interesting, this project would have to be completed with out ever meeting the student and working around strict prison rules regarding communication. All correspondence must be done with through letters. In this fast paced world of immediate digital results, coordinating this project requires a long forgotten level of patience, as communicating ideas with him takes considerable time.

At the time of this writing, through the coordination of Pastor Steve, Tenzin, prison staff, and myself – we have managed to create a mosaic design for Jorge. We put together a kit of all the necessary materials for him to complete the project. We have delivered the materials to the prison. We have navigated the prison’s web of paper work and procedures. And now in these waning days of summer, we wait by the mail box for another hand written letter to fill us in on the unfolding of events.

Blessings, Pr. Steve