September 2016

The CALL
From Pastor Max
Do all the good you can
By all the means you can
In all the ways you can
In all the places you can
To all the people you can
As long as you ever can.       
           —John Wesley
This is a quote from John Wesley I used in worship on Sunday, as we looked at the meaning of vocation and work in our life as Christians.There are all sorts of things happening in the life of St. John’s for September: Pastor Karen will lead us in worship on the 11th, as we kick off the Fall education programs. The Adult Forums will lead off with a discussion of how our culture has changed as a result of the terrorist attacks on 9/11. We will then take a few weeks to look at the issue of race. On that note I leave you with another quote which I think summarizes the disconnect between the privileged and those who are part of a group marginalized by the economic system.

Reinhold Niebuhr, in “Moral Man and Immoral Society,” states:
The educational advantages which privilege buys, and the opportunities for the exercise of authority which come with privileged social position, develop capacities which are easily attributed to innate endowment. The presence of able men among the privileged is allowed to obscure the number of instances in which hereditary privilege is associated with knavery and incompetence. On the other hand it has always been the habit of privileged groups to deny the oppressed classes every opportunity for the cultivation of innate capacities and then to accuse them of lacking what they have been denied the right to acquire. (P.117)

In a broad sense, Christian stewardship is how we care for the world, what job we do and how we do our job. By the grace of Christ, we carry the sacred within us into our secular work, to be salt and light to the world. Ultimately our vocation and our job is love, to love as Christ loves us, to increase love, justice and equal opportunity in the world, to invite everyone to the banquet table. This will often entail sacrifice, the performance of acts that are not entirely enjoyable, and sometimes it will mean suffering and sacrifice. But finally, there is nothing that brings more joy and pleasure than love. And the joy of love is eternal. Thanks be to God.

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The memorial service for Betty Hall, a beloved longtime member of St. John’s — and a remarkable woman so dear to so many of us, will take place this Saturday, Sept. 3, 1:00 pm, at St. John’s.  Betty died July 23, just short of her 101st birthday.  A graduate of the University of Maryland Medical College in Pediatrics, she was the only woman in her class. Betty married a medical school classmate, Lawrence Cannon, MD. After moving to Berkeley, and rearing five children, she returned to medical practice serving Berkeley clinics and the Alameda City Health Departments. Dr. Cannon died in 1973. Betty continued practicing until 1981, when she married Dick Hall, a revered member of our congregation; their generosity to St. John’s will always be appreciated.  Eleven grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren will have warm memories of her, as will we all at St. John’s.

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Flick Flack News
Movies selected for the September 23 potluck dinner are: “Indignation,” “Equity,” and “Morris From America.” The first two are currently in the East Bay. The Morris film is opening later this month (we hope). Dinner starts at 6:30 pm in the Campbell Reception Room, followed by review and discussion of the films. We are a small, but lively group, so far, and would love to have more interested persons join the conversation. You don’t have to have seen all three films (or even one) to attend. Questions? Call Sally Hussey.
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Horizons Bible Study
Thursday, September 15 is the next date for the Presbyterian Women’s Horizons Bible Study.  We will start the 2016-2017 study called: “Who Is Jesus?” At our August meeting, Pastor Max provided an overview of the historical Jesus, in preparation for this year’s focus of study. The author has us start with The Gospel of Mark, as we seek to answer that question.  Each month, we will look at the other Gospels and additional sources. This month, the background scripture is Mark, chapters 1-8. The key passage is Mark 8: 27-33. We meet at 12 noon – 2:00 pm in the Campbell Reception Room. You are invited to bring your lunch, your Bible and the Horizons Bible Study magazine. Extra copies are available for $10 each (you don’t have to have a copy to come).
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The Literature Club….
will meet Thursday, September 22, at 2:30 pm in the Office Break Room. We will discuss “A Thousand Acres” by Jane Smiley.  All are welcome.
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The St. John’s Knitting Ministry will meet in the church office break room on Fridays, September 2 and September 16. Please join us at any time between 1:30 and 4 to enjoy knitting, tea and conversation. All are welcome.  Even if you don’t knit we would love to have your company.
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A letter to Diane Morrison, from Chhani Bungsut in India…
which Diane would like to share with you

Hi, Diane,
I’ve been so wrapped up in all my schoolwork that I haven’t found the time to write this email. I just wanted to let you know that I’m having an amazing time here in India and that I am loving every minute I spend at Woodstock school. I hope everything is going well and I just wanted to let you know that I miss you all very dearly. 
Love, 
Chhani
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Elect Justice 2016!
East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy (EBASE)
Thursday, September 8 from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
This event will take place on Thursday, September 8, from 6:30 to 9:00 at the Oakland Impact Hub, 2323 Broadway, Oakland.  Individual tickets are $100 each*. Tickets provide entry to our event, fabulous entertainment, yummy hors d’oeuvres, and a great selection of beverages from local breweries. We will honor these individuals for innovative leadership and tireless commitment to economic, racial, and social justice: Gary Jimenez, SEIU 1021; Dr. Anthony Iton, The California Endowment; Joyce Guy, retired Ironworker and West Oakland Job Resource Center; Pastor Pablo Morataya, Primera Iglesia Presbiteriana Hispana.
2016 is a big election year, but EVERY day EBASE, our allies, and supporters like you work hard to create good jobs and healthy, vibrant, and diverse neighborhoods. Join us for an evening to honor people like you who don’t wait for the ballot box to elect justice. Let’s celebrate the grassroots power we have built together that has propelled our local economic, racial, and social justice victories upward to the state and national level. Please support Elect Justice! by buying tickets. Contact Laurie Earp, Earp Events & Fundraising, events@earpevents.com or at 510-839-3100.  Have questions about Elect Justice 2016!? Contact East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Econo
* If a $100 ticket is outside your budget we offer sliding-scale tickets at $50 apiece.  You may purchase your ticket or make donations at this link:  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/elect-justice-2016-tickets-25916669456