Midweek Message

December 6, 2016

Jim Hopkins

December 6, 2016

Oakland and the East Bay is in mourning this week for the lives lost in the Ghost Ship Warehouse Fire. Most of those who died were young, most of them artists of various sorts. Their deaths remind us anew that this life is fragile and impermanent. Their lives remind us that those who produce the art (painting, music, sculpture, tapestry, etc.) that adds much beauty to what can be a bland existence, often live a very precarious existence. Communities are well served by ensuring that there is safe, affordable living and work space for the artists in their midst. We offer a prayer of gratitude  for those  who commit their lives to truth, beauty and goodness even as we give thanks for those who commit their lives to the safety of the community. (A former co-worker of Jill Nesbitt,  Chase Wittenauer,  and a friend of Julian Nesbitt, Draven McGill, are among those who perished in the fire.)
This past Sunday Cheryl Smith, the Executive Director of Family Support Services, our partner in our Support a Family Christmas ministry, reminded us how important our caring is to many families in Oakland and neighboring communities. There is still time to sign up to participate in this effort. Thanks also for your support of our Youth and their Craft and Bake Sale.
This coming Sunday, the third Sunday of Advent, we will again read from the prophet Isaiah (35: 1-10) during worship. Part of Isaiah’s proclamation reads, “Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees. Say to those who are of a fearful heart, “Be strong, do not fear!”
Building on these words, our Grief and Loss Ministry invites everyone to stay following worship for a  “Blue Christmas Observance,” a time to remember that our many losses can make this season very hard.

Prayers of the Congregation

  • Zondra Martin and family as they mourn her niece, Crystal
  • Mark Liebenow as he mourns the death of his mom this summer and very recently his dad
  • Thanksgiving with Paige Bence and John Lee on the birth their granddaughter Kamari Cordia Lee (daughter of Legacy and Lauren)
  • Rafael Soto for his mother-in law and for a stressful work situation
  • Katrina Lau (health)
  • Joan Thatcher, Piedmont Gardens SNF
  • Tyrone Mack for his family after a scary incident on the freeway
  • Larry Sims for his family
  • Mary Karne for Maryla (health)
  • Jesse Lucas (health)
  • Jo Robinson (surgery on Wednesday)
  • Sandra Dunn (health)
  • Jeanette Paige as she cares for her father
  • Thanksgiving that LeAnn Flesher is recuperating well after ankle surgery
  • Thanksgiving with Lelia Sarratt that Randy Jones is at home and recovering, continued prayers for Lelia, Brenda and family
  • Thanksgiving that Jessie Guiton, Edie Parrott and Gloria Joseph were with us in worship
  • Thanksgiving for the work of Global Mission Partners Melanie Baggao in Lebanon and Kihomi Ngwemi and Nzunga Mabudiga in Haiti
  • Ted and Doris Evans
  • Warren and Camille Parker
  • Edna Dorenzo
  • Irene and Rita Jennings
  • Phyllis Nutting
  • Virginia Damretzky
  • Francis Graham
  • Gordon White
  • Larry Hutchings for his mom, Ethel
  • Jim Jeffery (health)
  • Justice for the Standing Rock Sioux Nation
  • Jehan, a Muslim mother and interfaith leader, for the safety of her teenage daughters


Forever Young gathers for a Christmas Luncheon this Saturday, December 10, at 12:30. Contact Alodia Corpuz or George Lee to RSVP. Bring a wrapped gift for the gift exchange.
I will be making a contribution of at least $500.00 on behalf of our congregation to a Ghost Ship Fire Victims Charity, I am not yet sure which one. If you would like to contribute I invite you to give to the LABC Fellowship Fund.