November 2016

—From Pastor Lynn
t is a great time of year at St. John’s.  I hope this CALL gets to you in time to remind you of our wonderful Day of the Dead celebration on Sunday, October 30. You might bring pictures or mementos of loved ones who have died to place on the display.  Word is out that there will be face painting in coffee hour.  Later, for adult forum, in keeping with the theme of commemorating All Saints, our longtime members will participate in an Oral History of St. John’s.
Dia de Los Muertos/ All Saints/ All Souls this year will follow the colorful and sometimes humorous approach of Latin Americans: We “laugh” as well as cry in the face of death and remember those who, having lived this life, have passed into the loving arms of the eternal God. Culturally it tends to be both more visceral and tactile, recognizing God’s presence “incarnate” and redemptive in this earthly world, and at the same time full of mystery.  There is more to this life than meets the eye, and yet we trust in God’s sovereignty.
Do you ever have to speak before a group of people at work…or Church?  Come for some quick public speaking pointers following worship and coffee half-hour November 6.
Sunday November 20: Here at St. John’s, Eglise Franco Africaine de la Nouvelle Alliance has invited us to attend their worship and share in an African Thanksgiving Feast.  Plan for a full afternoon with worship at 2:00 and food at 5:00.  I would love it if you could make one or both.
Advent/Christmas Decoration Saturday, Nov 26, 5:00 pm.  Pizza and salad provided.  This is a fun way to help the church, and I promise it will put you in a Christmas cheery kind of mood.  We do need your help if you will be around Thanksgiving weekend.
Blessings throughout this beautiful season,
Pastor Max
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Adult Forums in November:
November 6:  Public Speaking and Liturgist Training — If you would like to improve your public speaking skills, Pastor Max and Rev. Marilyn Chilcote will hold a training session after worship.
November 13: The hidden corners of St. John’s — Pastor Max will lead us on a tour of the church and center, and discuss the building budget and vision.
November 20: No Adult Forum
November 27: First Sunday of Advent discussion: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People — Join Pastor Max, and Pastor Karen in reflecting on the book The Life You’ve Always Wanted: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People by John Ortberg. Copies are available in the narthex after worship or contact Pastor Karen. Suggested donation $10.
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From Stuart Pawsey—
I want to tell you of an event my Chorus is having on November 5th
The La Pena Chorus is going to Cuba in early February and we are raising money for the trip, since we don’t want anyone not to be able to go because of the cost.  I hope you are able to attend — It should be a wonderful evening. If you want to contact me instead of Nancy Gendel,
I will arrange it with her and you can pay us when you see us.

Stuart Pawsey <spawsey@comcast.net>
Benefit Dinner & Concert Extravaganza Nov. 5, 2016
Join us for a fun-filled evening with a delicious meal, silent auction, and a performance by La Pena Community Chorus!  First Unitarian Church of Oakland 685 14th St., Oakland. Doors open at 5:30 pm.  Tickets $30. To purchase tickets or make a donation, contact Nancy Gendel at 510-845-5161 or ngendel@pacbell.net (or Stuart Pawsey, spawsey@comcast.net.  Proceeds will help fund our February 2017 cultural exchange trip to Cuba, cultivating relationships of solidarity across borders for social justice and peace.
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November is stewardship season, when we reflect and commit our financial pledges to support the work of the church in the upcoming year.  We will have Minute for Mission messages from the following people in the coming Sundays:  Deanne Detmers, Exec. Dir. of Behavioral Intervention for Autism 10/30, Brad Perkins 11/6, Don Rising 11/13 and St. John’s Intern Johnny Kashung 11/20.  On Sunday, 11/20 we will dedicate our pledges during worship.  Stewardship letters will be mailed out the first week of November. Please give your contribution prayerful consideration!
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An early invitation to all children and youth
to share the wonder of Christmas 2016 at St. John’s!
Come, even before November! On Sunday, October 30 at 11:15 AM, children of all ages and parents are invited to meet in the Sproul Room to make our first plans, including selecting music and rehearsal schedule, for our Christmas Pageant to be presented Sunday, December 11, at 10:00 AM.  We need people of all ages who like to act, sing, dance, play musical instruments, and help with costumes and props. For information and to sign up, call Fred Harvey at (510) 843-8469.  We will have a stage rehearsal and cast party on Friday Dec 9 at 6:00 PM
INVITE FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS!
NEW CAST MEMBERS ARE WELCOME AT ANY TIME.

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December “Sock Stuffing Party” and Offering of Socks at the Manger:
The Mission and Justice Commission invites everyone to participate in its Christmas sock offering project. With a little effort and modest donation, we at St. John’s can make sure that clients of the East Bay Women’s Resource Center know they are not forgotten at Christmastime.
Getting Off on the Right Foot: Kickoff Sunday, November 27, worship attendees will receive an empty sock to take home, put into it a small, caring note to a woman at the East Bay Women’s Resource Center, and possibly small gift items such as a hotel-sized lotion, shampoo, lipstick, a hairbrush, comb or coin purse… then bring socks back to church the following Sunday, December 4.
Fun and Five Dollars: After Worship on the 4th, we will hold a “Sock Stuffing Party.” Everyone will be invited to help complete the socks with Chapstick, Kleenex, pens, notebooks, and other items (to be provided) that the staff of the East Bay Women’s Resource Center has asked us to provide.
                  Gifts at the Manger: The stuffed socks will be set aside until December 11th when they will all be carried to the manger at the end of our Christmas Pageant as gifts to the Christ Child.

Prepare to participate! We request a $5.00 donation for the socks and the “fillings” we will provide at the “Sock Stuffing Party.” And, finally, the center is perpetually low on items they buy in large bottles:  non-prescription medications: aspirin, Tylenol, Motrin, cold meds, antacids, etc.  We will deliver these things separately. You can donate! You can “stuff”! You can offer up a gift! These gifts symbolize our concern for the women who need the services of the Women’s Resource Center who, like the biblical widows and orphans, live near the bottom of our society. Nelly and Mark Coplan will deliver our socks and our offerings to the women’s center. A gift to the Christ child indeed!
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Ecumenical Peace Institute
invites you to attend an Autumn Gathering at St. John’s
Sunday, November 13 • Dinner and Program  5:30–8:45 pm
Where Do We Go From Here? — no matter who won
Norman Solomon, journalist, media critic, author & activist, will speak and lead us in an examination of how we shall work for justice and peace under whatever administration has been elected.  Join us for a delicious vegetarian dinner.  Snacks and music at 5:30; dinner and program at 6:00. PLEASE CALL 510-990-0374 to let us know you are coming. A donation $15 – $50 benefits EPI’s ongoing work; no one turned away for lack of funds.  Wheelchair accessible entrance on Garber St. and from underground parking garage. Visit http://www.epicalc.org/ for more details.
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Horizon Bible Study will meet Thursday, November 17 to continue our year-long study called “Who Is Jesus?”  Barbara Taylor will lead our discussion of the Gospel of Luke, Chapters 1-4; 14:12-24; 16;19-31.  We meet in the Campbell Room from Noon to 2:00 pm.
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Flick Flack will not meet in November, but with convene on December 2, the first Friday of December.  Films to see for our potluck discussion will be decided at the gathering this Friday, October 28.
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St. John’s Knitting Ministry will meet November 4 and 18 in the St. John’s office break room at 1:30.  All are welcome to drop by for some or all of the afternoon.
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The Literature Group will not meet in November because of the Thanksgiving holiday.
Happy Thanksgiving!