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News for June 6, 2023

This Sunday, June 11: In-person service

This Sunday, June 11, our guest preacher will be Rev. Davena Jones, Bridge Minister of the Northern California Nevada Conference of the UCC (aka "The Conference"). Davena stepped in when our last Conference Minister, Rev. Diane Weible, retired. She has already been of help to the Search Committee, and we're looking forward to sharing our Sunday worship with her.

The congregational meeting will follow worship.

The Giving Sunday offering for June is for the UCC's Strengthen the Church.

Recent sermons

Check out our YouTube page to see recent sermons. Go to our archive of slides to see bulletins and slides used during recent services.

Taize service on Friday

Join us on Friday, June 9, at 7:30 pm for our monthly service of chant, prayer and quiet. Hear the poetry of Mark Jarman as we share the summer twilight. Ariel Wang and her violin will be there too. The usual Zoom room will be open and the bulletin will be online.

Congregational meeting this Sunday

After worship this Sunday we will have one of our two yearly congregational meetings (the other one is in December to approve the budget for the upcoming year). Your presence and your vote are necessary in order to elect our new slate of officers. If you can't be there in person, be sure to return the absentee ballot that you will receive this week in email. At the meeting you will also hear from Moderator Roy Gesley about the important midyear changes to our 2023 plan.

Summer sermon series: "Pick a Poet"

In the spirit of the summer sermon series "August on Broadway" (2021) and "Favorite Children's Books" (2022), this summer's sermon theme is "Pick a Poet". Choose a Sunday and come tell us about a favorite poet of yours. Why do their writings resonate with you? Share a few of your favorite examples and what touched you about them. Rumi and D. H. Lawrence are spoken for, and we might need to do Emily Dickinson twice. Consider this:

Poetry and worship seem made for each other. There we are, gathered to share our understanding of a power-that-is-beyond-understanding, and we are convinced that more words will make it clearer. Along comes the poet, with a striking image and very few words, and all of a sudden we get a glimpse we didn’t have before. Thomas Hardy famously wrote, “If Galileo had said in verse that the world moved, the inquisition might have let him alone.

Talk to Marilyn Garrison or Polly to get on the preaching calendar.

Annual Gathering June 15-17 (links fixed)

The Annual Gathering of the Northern California Nevada Conference of the UCC will happen close to us this year, at First Congregational Church in Palo Alto, from Thursday, June 15 to Saturday, June 17. This is the meeting that used to be at Asilomar, then moved to the campus of Sonoma State University, and finally landed on the Peninsula. Check out the updated schedule, price list and registration. This is a good opportunity to catch up with friends from other churches and meet the new conference staff.

Upcoming services and events

• Taize service: Fri, June 9 (7:30 pm) at church. Also available on Zoom.

• Congregational Meeting: Sun, June 11, after worship. Vote on the incoming officers and hear important updates to our 2023 plan.

• Weds discussion group: June 14 (7 pm), Zoom

We're continuing with the list of "clobber passages", those Bible verses used against the LGBTQ+ community. On the 14th, we'll look at Genesis 19, the story of Sodom and Gomorrah. What is it actually about? How else has it been interpreted? All are welcome to the conversation.

• Worship & Arts: Sun, July 9 after church. Come help us plan the summer.

• Book Group: Sun, July 9 (7 pm), Zoom. Reading the novel “Our Missing Hearts” by Celeste Ng

• Church Camp. July 14-16 at Monte Toyon along with Belmont UCC and others.

• Women’s retreat: Sep 1-3, Pacific Grove

Contact Polly Moore for details.

• Men’s retreat: Sep 22–24, Pacific Grove

Contact Roy Gesley for details.

Links and resources

June is Pride Month! San Mateo will celebrate with an event this Saturday, June 10, from 11am-5pm in Central Park. There's even a Pride Parade! Details here.

Watch an inspiring young adult dance group send an anti-discrimination message "loud and clear" on Britain's Got Talent.

Quote of the week

* at the end of the day *

at the end of the day

when we all get


someone will say

put down the words

you've used as weapons

hammer all rejection

into an embrace

to draw in the ones

you've kept out

and sit at table

with all the people

you've mocked

and hated

it's well past time

you got to know

the other

who is not other

but is you

in different guise

ask questions


-- David Hazard

Weekly events

• Meditation group: Wednesdays at 7:30 am

In person at the church building

• Sunday worship: 10 am

In person or on Zoom — see the newsletter or this site for updates

Image: Rev. Davena Jones, Bridge Conference Minister and our guest preacher this Sunday


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