A Note from Pastor Rick (6/15/2016)

Lament for Orlando by Meg HessIn the study of psychology, we discover that numbness is often a first response to trauma. I feel something of that as I have tried to wrap my mind around what happened in Orlando this weekend. I don’t live in that part of the country and no one I know so far was personally affected. But, as others have commented, a gay bar has been sanctuary, “sacred space,” in this country for most lgbtq people as we’ve struggled to find safe space and journey partners in a hostile world. For whatever reasons, the pain of this violation is palpable for me. I thank God that I find safe space and blessed community among you and I thank you as well. May God bless and keep us. May we yet find the grace and peace of God’s Beloved Community where no one hurts or destroys anymore.

We had a great time hanging out with and learning from The Lorax last Sunday:

 the word of the Lorax seems perfectly clear.
UNLESS someone like you
cares a whole awful lot,
nothing is going to get better.
It’s not.’”

Thanks to Daniel Ha for his beautiful playing of movement from a piano sonata by Beethoven. We have certainly been blessed with young musical talent recently. Sunday we will have more as James Poe will play his violin once more before heading for summer in New York City, where he will be studying with famed violinist, Itzhak Perlman.

Our Suessian text for Sunday is the tale of that wonderful elephant Horton, who hatches an egg. It seems to me a wonderful text for Father’s Day, as well as a reflection on faithfulness. Jesus says if we had the faith of a mustard seed we could move a mountain. Paul says faith sustains people like Abraham and Sarah on perilous journeys to strange places when God calls. Horton says “an elephant’s faithful, one-hundred percent.” How about us? Can we make such a claim? The Psalmist says “God’s steadfast love endures forever.” Isn’t that the model for fatherly love, from whomever it comes?

After worship we will enjoy our first cookout of the season on the patio. It’s another way to celebrate Father’s Day. We can use your help in making this a grand event. Come for worship Sunday at 10:00 AM and stay for the cookout. Invite your family and friends, neighbors and colleagues, acquaintances and strangers to join us on the journey.

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

Pastor Rick

Note from Pastor Rick (6/1/2016)

James Poe, violinLast Sunday we continued “violin month,” as we listened to the beautiful playing of James Poe. James will play for us again on June 19 before heading off to New York City for seven weeks of study with Itzhak Perlman. We also concluded Peace Month with a focus on “Peace Now!” and a spirited discussion of Daniel Shapiro’s Negotiating the Nonnegotiable.

This month as we center on our own children and youth, celebrating graduations and the end of the school year, and raising funds for the Granholm Scholarship Fund, our theme will be “The Gospel According to Dr. Seuss.” The beloved children’s author and illustrator, Theodore Seuss Geisel, dispensed wit and wisdom for children of all ages, from one to 100. Each Sunday we will focus on one or more of his works, along with the Ancient Word to see what together they might teach us as people of faith.

This Sunday is Youth Sunday. Pastor Gregory, along with our children and youth, will be leading us in worship. The book they’ve chosen is the classic graduation gift, Oh, the Places You’ll Go. We will also celebrate Communion. Adult Spiritual Formation is on hiatus for the summer. Sunday will be our bi-monthly Lunch Bunch,

June 12 we will begin patio hour and June 19 we will hold our first cook out of the summer in honor of Father’s Day. If you’d be willing to host Patio Hour or help with the cook out, please sign up on the sheet in the Entryway. Also, on June 12, Grace Baptist Church in San Jose will be hosting the annual spring gathering of the Pacific Coast Baptist Association. The theme is “Communications in the Church.” There will be worship at 2:30 PM, followed by a panel on which I am participating, ending with dinner. Registration forms are available in the Entryway and office, or you can let me know if you’d like to attend. Registration deadline is Monday, June 6.

Join us for any of these opportunities beginning with Sunday at 10:00 AM. Invite your family and friends, neighbors and colleagues, acquaintances and strangers to join us on the journey.

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

Pastor Rick