July 9, 2013

The images of the charred hulk of the Asiana Airlines Boeing 777 resting near the runway at San Francisco International Airport continue to rule the news in the Bay Area insuring that the same images remain fixed our minds. Prayers continue for all who have been touched by this heart stopping disaster, including those like our own Jo Robinson, who continue to respond to those in pain.

This coming Sunday I will preach from Colossians 1: 1-14. At the end of this text we read these words of hope. He (God the Father) has rescued us from the power of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Susan Grove Eastman of Duke University writes, “In 1:13-14 two different pictures of salvation combine. The first is that of liberation from the powers of darkness and transfer to the kingdom of the Son. Such language evokes apocalyptic images of suprahuman powers holding humanity captive. The dominant motif here is the liberation of helpless creatures, not the forgiveness of guilty sinners who are responsible for their choices. The second image, in 1:14, is precisely the latter: ‘in Christ, we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins’.”

I my sermon, “The Land In Which We Are Forgiven,” I will lift up the promise of forgiveness while recognizing the land in which we humans truly forgive, and are truly forgiven, is a distant land, a land to which we are moving, but a land in which we do not yet dwell.

Prayers of the Congregation

  • Prayers for those whose bodies need strength and healing – Beverly Cooper (Bev, who moved to Arizona in late May, has suffered a stroke and is hospitalized in Tucson) Bette Pancoe, Sybil Alexander, Charlotte Evans, Doris and Ted Evans, Steve Leichter, Angelique Gollinger, Sandra Dunn, David Broadnax, George Lee for Sylvia, George and Sylvia for their neighbor Ying, Edna Dorenzo, Virginia Damretzky, Al Johnson, Jamie Reid, Rae Rita Thompson’s father, Celestine Bennett’s son Richard,  Jeanne Robinson for Linda Ng, Cynthia Nelson, Kimberly Williams for her father, Larry and Darnell Sims for their co-worker George, Joan Thatcher, Beth Rice (my sister), Bonnie Sato for Trish -her grandchilren’s caregiver, Alean Saunders-Coffey for her neighbor, Myra Saxton for her sister and her neighbor, Mary Alice and Abe Cirimele for Sal Tedesco, Jewelle Gibbs for her sister Mauryne, Sheila Sims
  • Prayers for those who are aging and their loved ones who care for them – Sandra Dunn for her father, Theresako Harris for her aunt, Larry Hutchings for his mother, Marc Harrison for his father, Sheryl Gattey for her mother, Ruth Smith, Naomi Nutting for her mother, Karen Hopkins for her father, Connie Hector for her mother in law, Helen Roberson for her brother, Katrina Lau for her father, Max Powers, Jeanette Paige for her father
  • Prayers for those who are grieving – The American Baptist Family on the death of former Ministers and Missionaries Benefit Board Director, Gordon Smith
  • Prayers for our loved ones who are facing significant challenges – Kay Baxter for Stacey and Jamie, Georgia Upshaw for her friend Ginny, Toni Daniels for her family, Margaret Alexander for LaShaya and family, Joan Patten for her son Peter and her sister Anne, Rowena Jackson for her son Paul, Mary Lee, Ann Fields for her family, Steve Reimer for his son Greg, Larry Sims for his sister Rene, Zondra Martin for her family, Phil and Gloria Meads for Phillip Oliver, Sarah and June, Jason Milano, Dwight Dickerson and family, Bjoe Morris for Pamela Addison, Marie Johnson for Donnie and his fiance Nicole as he prepares for deployment as well as for Triselena, Mary Karne for her neighbor and for her family, Mikki Boyd for Genevive Cannille who’s husband is very ill, Paige Bence and John Lee for Travis as begins a job search
  • Prayers for our community – For those who live in fear, the Congolese refugee families who will arrive in Oakland in July (We are collecting sample size toiletries for them. There is a collection box in the Narthex.), the people of Brazil and for Julian Nesbitt and members of the Pacific Boychoir as they perform there, Hal Rice, Wisdom for our elected leaders, Aaveya and Atira O”Guinn as they move to South Carolina
  • Prayers for people we don’t know who are facing challenges we can’t imagine – the people of Syria, the people of Iraq, the people of Afghanistan, the people of South Africa as they pray for Nelson Mandela, the people of Egypt, for the fire victims and fire fighters in Colorado, California and other western states besieged by wildfires
  • Prayers of gratitude – For Karen Okusu and all who are working on next week’s Vacation Bible Camp, with Jim Jeffery on some good medical news
  • Prayers for ourselves – May each of us know that we are counted among God’s beloved

Announcements

Rod Murray, who lives near the church, has jury duty on July 29, at the Alameda County Courthouse in Hayward. If you are able to help him with transportation to the courthouse please call him.