Note from Pastor Rick (11/9/2016)

Many of us are reeling from the surprising results of yesterday’s presidential election. At a minimum, we need to be in prayer for this nation, it’s leadership, and all its people in this time of transition. Clearly there are challenges ahead.  As a community in service to Jesus Christ, we need to remember our common commitment to compassion for all, to peace, including the well-being of all creation, and our love for God and our neighbors – all of them! Justice, mercy, and humility are still our hallmarks. Several friends on Facebook have risen above their grief over the election returns to claim a commitment to the work for God’s Beloved Community, which still lies ahead. It reminds of the South African Freedom Song, “We shall not give up the fight; we have only started.”

This Sunday’s theme is “Joy Begins Now.” I’m not entirely sure what we will do with that. I know many people are not feeling very joyful at the moment, The focus scripture is from the prophet Isaiah who writes of joy and new creation both in anticipation and the aftermath of his people’s exile. Like Haggai last week, Isaiah stands amid the ruin of his people’s whole way of life and proclaims, with an audacity of hope, that God is doing a new thing. Perhaps it will be good, even healing, for us to spend time in contemplating the wisdom of the prophet.

Last Sunday we had a really good and spirited discussion, inspired by watching part of the video series, “Saving Jesus Redux.” The question we are wrestling with right now is “What Can We Know about Jesus (and How)?” This is a challenging topic. We are helped by wise voices from the video like Marcus Borg and John Nelson. There was also a lot of thoughtful sharing among ourselves as well.

I want to remind you of several things. First you should have received our Stewardship mailing by now. In addition to the cover letter and financial pledge form, you should have found a Time and Talent Survey. I know we only put one copy of the survey in each envelope and there are multiple people in many of our households. We will have extra copies of the survey on Sunday for you to pick up if you need more. We would like to hear back from everyone, young and old alike. The target date for return of the pledge forms and surveys is our Sunday service on November 20. Also we have sign up sheets for the Sunday morning hospitality time and for the Thanksgiving Feast the Pastor Gregory and I will be hosting at the church on Thanksgiving Day.

Come Sunday at 10:00 AM for worship and education. Join in the joy of the day. Invite someone to share in it all.

Together, let us strive…to know God’s love!
Pastor Rick   

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We are a progressive Baptist Church affiliated with the American Baptist Churches, USA. We have been in Palo Alto since 1893. We celebrate our Baptist heritage. We affirm the historic Baptist tenets of: Bible Freedom, Soul Freedom, Church Freedom, Religious Freedom

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