January 24, 2017

Dear LABC,

Following my “Our Destinies Are Intertwined” sermon this past Sunday, and in advance of the Long Range Planning Committee’s Writing Retreat this coming Saturday, Dale Edmonson sent these Words of Welcome from the Coventry Cathedral in England. I think they express the aspirations of LABC and our hopes for this Sunday’s service in which we will celebrate the gifts of the generations.

A Greeting on the Door of Coventry Cathedral

 

We extend a special welcome to those who are single, married, divorced, widowed, straight, gay, confused, well-heeled or down-at-heel. We especially welcome wailing babies and excited toddlers. We welcome you whether you can sing like Pavarotti or just growl quietly to yourself. You’re welcome here if you’re just browsing, just woken up or just got out of prison. We don’t care if you’re more Christian than the Archbishop of Canterbury or haven’t been to church since Christmas 10 years ago. We extend a special welcome to those who are over 60 but not grown up yet and to teenagers who are growing up too fast.

 

We welcome keep-fit moms, football dads, starving artists, tree huggers, latte sippers, vegetarians, junk food eaters. We welcome those who are in recovery or still addicted. We welcome you if you’re having problems, are down in the dumps or don’t like organized religion. We’re not that keen on it either. We offer welcome to those who think the Earth is flat, work too hard, don’t work, can’t spell, or are here because Granny is visiting and wanted to come to the cathedral. We welcome those who are inked, pierced, both or neither.

 

We offer a special welcome to those who could use a prayer right now, had religion shoved down their throats as kids or got lost on the Ring Road and wound up here by mistake. We welcome pilgrims, tourists, seekers, doubters and you.

I look forward to seeing you Sunday and to living out this welcome in the days ahead.

Jim H.

Prayers of the Congregation

  • The President, the Congress and the Cabinet. May they govern justly.
  • Peggy Rogers-Tamayo as she grieves the death of her aunt, Gladys
  • Ruben Artery and Cecil White as they mourn the death of Ruben’s brother, Robert
  • Carol Norris as she cares for her brother, Chris
  • Jo Robinson (surgery on Friday)
  • Lari Mussati for Lorriane Banks (grieving)
  • Marie Johnson for many family member and friends
  • Thanksgiving that Katrina Lau was with us in worship
  • Joan Thatcher (SNF Piedmont Gardens)
  • Carol Leichter for family and friends
  • Alean Saunders-Coffey for family and friends
  • Ann Fields for her daughter Tamera (health)
  • Larry Sims for his family
  • Daphne Chin (health)
  • Mary Anderson (health)
  • Sandra Dunn (health)
  • James Chuck (health)
  • Skip Keller for his father, Lou (SNF Baywood, Castro Valley)
  • Rick McKillop for his daughter, Jamie (job concerns)
  • All who come to the church for assistance
  • All our homebound members
  • Sydney Webster for all who are in hospice care and their caregivers
  • Victims of violence in Oakland, the United States and globally
  • Thanksgiving for the ministry of the Samaritan Neighborhood Center
  • Thanksgiving for the ministry of the Correction Institutions Chaplaincy
  • Thanksgiving for the ministry of the Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America
  • John Dixon (LCC) and Joan Sulfita as they mourn the death of Joan’s brother
  • Warren Parker (Kaiser Hospital, San Leandro)
  • Phillip Martin and Cameron Wilson for Phillip’s uncle, Mike
  • Jim Dorr (health)
  • Kay Baxter for Stacey (housing)
  • Mary Karne for Maryla (health)
  • Zondra Martin for her family
  • Margaret Oladoja
  • The people of the Deep south in the aftermath of  a devastating series of storms
  • The Presidential Search Committee of the American Baptist Seminary of the West
  • The Executive Minister Search Committee of the Evergreen Baptist Association

The LABC Annual Meeting will follow worship this Sunday.

I just received word from Mark Graham that his mom, Frances, died this morning at her home. We will celebrate her life on a coming Sunday morning. The difference Harry (died 2001) and Frances made in the life of LABC over the years is enduring.