May 1, 2018

Dear LABC,

Thanks for the input, feedback and affirmation at this past Sunday’s Town Hall Meeting and Evaluation. Although the setting was a wee bit daunting, I congratulate the Personnel Committee on developing and implementing a format that was interesting and helpful. I thank you for the very good turnout. I will meet with the committee for some follow-up and strategizing. I look forward to what lies ahead.

My May sermon series will be “American Icons: The Faith of Famous People.” The three “icons” that we will consider are the evangelist Billy Graham, Sister Jean the Chaplain for the Loyola of Chicago basketball team and Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors.

This coming Sunday, as we honor the life and ministry of The Reverend Graham (who was quite possibly the most influential Christian of the 20th century) we will look at two central themes of his preaching – what it means to have a personal relationship with God and what it means to have Jesus living within us.

Prayers of the Congregation

  • Irene Jennings (Back at Piedmont Gardens after a brief stay in the hospital)
  • Dave Gattey (Piedmont Gardens)
  • All our homebound members
  • Justice for all immigrants, refugees and displaced persons including the 150 migrants from Central America that are at the USA/Mexico border near San Diego
  • Michael Hammer as she moves to Stockton
  • All who are in need of housing
  • Mary Karne for her family
  • Thanksgiving for the ministry of the churches of the Evergreen Baptist Association and our Executive Ministe, Douglas Avilesbernal
  • Thanksgiving for LeAnn Flesher and Carolyn Matthews and their work at the American Baptist Seminary of the West
  • Ann Fields for her family and those in need of food and housing
  • Alice Edmondson (health)
  • Sandra Dunn (health)
  • Kathleen Donson Soots for her brothers
  • Thanksgiving for all the members of Lakeshore who participated in the “Strength from the Roots” concert, ongoing prayers for the ministry of the Interfaith Movement For Human Integrity
  • Thanksgiving for the way Pastor Allison represents us in the work of Sanctuary (a challenging week lies ahead)
  • Alice Singh (health)
  • George Lee (health)
  • Kay Baxter for Jamie and Stacey
  • Thanksgiving that Geetha, Darshan and baby Emmanuel are safely home (There will be a shower to welcome Emmanuel and support his parents following worship on Sunday)
  • Alice Butler for her nephew Raul
  • Thanksgiving for our observance of Asian-American Heritage Month during May
  • All who carry loads of grief
  • Thanksgiving for all the musicians and music that grace our life at Lakeshore
  • Dave Robinson for his mom and dad (health)
  • Sheila Sims for her mom (changing apartments)
  • Joel Reyes for his aunt Florence (health)

Announcements

ICE on Trial: A People’s Tribunal:
11 a.m. -1 p.m. Saturday, May 5, at West County Detention Center (5555 Giant Highway). This is part of a national series of events holding ICE accountable for its culture of secrecy and systemic abuses of power. In light of ICE’s current practices, I find myself frequently proclaiming: treating innocent people as criminals is itself criminal.

Pause:
A Place to Reflect – Lakeshore’s Sanctuary will be open this Friday, May 4, from 6-8. Stop by for any length of time to meditate, offer prayers, or simply sit in a place of stillness. Live music by jazz musician Gerry Grosz. All faiths and ages are invited to participate.

Postscript:
We give thanks for the life and lasting influence of theologian James Cone who died on April 27. Cone was regarded as the founder of Black Liberation Theology. These words from his book The Cross and the Lynching Tree get to the essence of his teaching. “The cross can heal and hurt; it can be empowering and liberating but also enslaving and oppressive. There is no one way in which the cross can be interpreted. I offer my reflections because I believe that the cross placed alongside the lynching tree can help us to see Jesus in America in a new light, and thereby empower people who claim to follow him to take a stand against white supremacy and every kind of injustice.”