January 11, 2016

Dear LABC,

Pastor Tanner and I have been at the American Baptist Ministers Council of the Greater Bay Area (ably led by John Landgraf at Redwood Glen) so the Midweek Message is a bit hurried this week.

On January 17 we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr Sunday. We will read from Genesis 37, the beginning of the Joseph narrative, one of the longest and most significant portions of the book of Genesis. In this text Joseph’s brothers, irritated by their father’s favoritism toward Joseph and alienated by his arrogance toward them, first conspire to kill him and then act to sell him into slavery in Egypt. Having read this account many times we recognize that Joseph and his brothers will eventually find a path to reconciliation. However,  we are well advised not to rush toward that reconciliation and so ignore the brother’s crime and Joseph’s terror. In the face of that terror, Joseph, as Dr. King did thousands of years later, had to honestly assess the situation and find a way to both partner with providence and wrestle with demons. In the words of Rabbi, some positive pessimism was order.

Following worship we will, in the spirit of Dr. King, Stand and Sing for Justice, either on the corner of Lakeshore and Mandana or, if the weather is inclement, on the front steps of the Sanctuary.

Prayers of the Congregation

  • Zondra Martin for the Joyce Ammons family as they mourn her death and for Charles Lewis and Veronica Vaughan (health concerns)
  • Marie Johnson for colleagues facing challenging situations, the health concerns of several friends and thanksgiving for a precious grandson (also for his parents as they adapt to the rigors of parenthood)
  • The Harvey Family for Idris
  • All who are grieving
  • All who wish they could attend church but are not able – Virginia Damretzky, Edna Dorenzo, Francis Graham, Irene Jennings, Phyllis Nutting, Edie Parrott, Peg Shaw
  • Church World Service as it addresses the needs of members of the global human family
  • Ted and Doris Evans, health concerns
  • Warren and Camille Parker, health concerns
  • George Lee for his brother (health concerns)
  • Joan Thatcher, health concerns
  • John Townsend, health concerns
  • Rick Mixon for his mom (hospice care)
  • Harold Sutherland for his mom (hospice care)
  • Georgia Upshaw for her brother (hospice care)
  • Thanksgiving with the congregation of FBC Alameda for the leadership of their Interim Pastor, Paul Keener
  • Thanksgiving with Dayle and Darlene Scott for Darlene’s continued recuperation
  • Thanksgiving for the ministry of Redwood Glen Camp and Conference Center