Blog Archives: January 2016 — December 2016

Fall Parish Small Groups

September 21, 2016
Our Parish Small Groups have started up for the fall. It's not too late to join one! Below you'll see all of our parish small group options that started up last week. If you're interested in joining one, send a message to your selected group facilitator(s) listed below on the Online Community Network. Day and Time: Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. Location: 26 Rock Lane, Berkeley (Host: Steve and Judy Hanawalt) Facilitators: Steve and Judy Hanawalt, Tonia Roby Day and Time: Thursdays at 7:00 p.m. Facilitators: Doug Scribner, Sam ...

'Oh dear, did my kid say that?' Helping our kids with the upcoming elections.

August 30, 2016
Jayne George
I’ve asked around and discovered everyone is struggling with this. One kid, minutes before company was arriving, said ‘I hate (a candidate)!’ The parents, mortified and acutely aware that their guests supported that very candidate, gave a hurried lecture – as the doorbell rang – on ‘Respect Every Person Running For Office’…then desperately hoped their child, who was now confused, would remain mute. Another kid came up to his dad last week and asked anxiously, ‘Dad, if (a candidate) wins do we have to move to Canada?’ Chagrined, the dad ...

Responding to Oakland's Housing Crisis

June 27, 2016
Jen McKillips
The past couple of weeks have been rough in Oakland.  The OPD has been exposed for rampant abuse, the mayor’s office is opening an investigation into who is leaking information, a teenager was killed at a memorial service, a recycling center (which is a lifeline for nearly 400 homeless residents) is shutting down in August, and then there is the affordable housing crisis.  There never seems to be a shortage of scandal or obstacles to overcome in our city. In the past 18 months rent in Oakland has increased by 40%, roughly 60% of the city’s ...

A call for peace and engagement in Oakland

June 21, 2016
Patrick Vaughn
Friends, This post is primarily aimed towards those of you who live in Oakland, however, I think it is a useful reminder for all of us to consider how we can follow Christ in a way that seeks God's shalom (wholeness and peace) for the cities in which we live. This Wednesday Oakland City Church is holding a night of action for peace on our streets. Last week two men were shot right outside their church and one man died. In order to support our brothers and sisters at Oakland City Church, I’m cancelling our first Love One Another discussion ...

6/12 Sermon Discussion Questions

June 13, 2016
Patrick Vaughn
Date: 6/12/2016 Series: Love One Another Title: Welcome One Another Speaker: Patrick Vaughn Text: Romans 15:5-9 and Matthew 9:9-13 Reflection Quotes: “Jesus’ concern is the liberation of human beings from people despising prejudices.” - Joachim Gnilka “Beware of ever desiring such purity that you do not want to seem to yourself to be a sinner, for Christ dwells only in sinners.” - Martin Luther “Children, parents, spouses, lovers, colleagues and friends want to know that our love for them reflects the love of God, that our ...

I love Christ Church...but the worship feels too traditional or liturgical

June 10, 2016
Bart Garrett
Do you feel this way? I get it. I imagine a lot of folks who call Christ Church home might struggle over the worship. If you don't mind doing a little bit of work, I'm convinced that these sources will help you understand why we worship the way that we worship! Got 2 minutes? Watch this. Got 10 minutes? Read this. Got a few hours to tackle an incredible book? Make this your summer reading.

Resources for your "Love One Another" Summer Series Learning Community

May 29, 2016
Bart Garrett
We hope that you will prayerfully consider entering into a "Love One Another" Learning Community this summer. We are hoping that several of our parishes will host such communities, albeit as microgroups, community groups, or ad hoc groups that get started for the express purpose of conversation and growth around this topic. We hope that you will leverage these resources along the way: 1) Summer Series "Love One Another" Overview Document. 2) Gerald Sittser's Love One Another. 3) Our very own Dr. Brian Kay's podcast entitled "The Shot ...

An Act of Rebellion

May 20, 2016
Bart Garrett
I was listening to KQED-NPR this morning. As you would know, public radio is right in the middle of this year’s pledge campaign. Izzy, a Senior in high school, called in to say that she was giving to the Pledge Campaign because she and her brother listen everyday, and her parents do not listen nor do they give. She said that she was “Giving as an act of rebellion.” As you know, Christ Church is in the middle of her own pledge campaign. By now, through snail mail, email, website, liturgy, and Sunday announcements, you have heard ...

4/24/2016 Sermon Discussion Questions

April 24, 2016
Bart Garrett
Date: 4/24/2016 Series: Resurrection Revolution Title: Revolution against Power Speaker: Bart Garrett Text: Acts 16:11-40 Reflection Quote: When I thought all was lost, the dungeon shook, and my chains fell off. -James Baldwin Questions: The Coercive Powers of the World (principalities, predatory profit, prejudice), are best undermined by the subversive powers of God (including things like prayer, joy, wisdom, and hospitality). HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT: Listen to this sermon again and take a journal to a coffee shop (not ...

Greg Murai's Passing

April 21, 2016
Bart Garrett
Christ Church lost Greg Murai, our Worship Arts Associate, to a heart attack late Tuesday night. Our staff has been rocked by two sudden deaths only seven months apart. Our church has known the depths of deep grief. Christians, all of us, live in the tension between Isaiah 55 and 1 John 3… “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” -Isaiah 55:8,9 (Tension) “See what ...

4/10/2016 Sermon Discussion Questions

April 11, 2016
Jonathan St. Clair
Date: 4/10/2016 Series: Resurrection Revolution Title: Revolution against Popular Gods Speaker: Jonathan St. Clair Text: Acts 14:8-23 Reflection Quotes: When human beings give their heartfelt allegiance to and worship that which is not God, they progressively cease to reflect the image of God. One of the primary laws of human life is that you become like what you worship… Those who worship money increasingly define themselves in terms of it and increasingly treat other people as creditors, debtors, partners, or customers rather ...

Why am I excited about hosting "Skeptical"?

April 11, 2016
Bart Garrett
Why am I excited about hosting "skeptical"? Having spent eleven years in the Bay Area, I've encounterd all sorts of people with all sort of ideas about belief, faith, God, the church, and Christianity. Having hosted several conversations, forums, and events to cultivate discussions around these matters, I've noticed that most everyone is genuinely pleased and even deeply grateful for having safe spaces in which to bring his or her questions, doubts, fears, and concerns. I'm excited about hosting "Skeptical" because I've grown as a ...

4/3/2016 Sermon Discussion Questions

April 04, 2016
Bart Garrett
Date: 4/3/2016 Series: Resurrection Revolution Title: Revolution against Popular History Speaker: Bart Garrett Text: Acts 13:13-33a Reflection Quotes: “The book of Acts...is full of the energy and excitement of the early Christians as they found God doing new things all over the place and learned to take the good news of Jesus around the world. It’s also full of the puzzles and problems that churches faced then and face today – crises over leadership, money, ethnic divisions, theology and ethics, not to mention serious clashes ...

IRC Food and Donation Drive for Local Refugee Families

March 28, 2016
Patrick Vaughn
Many of us see stories about refugees in the news and wonder what we can do to help.  In fact, we have refugee families from countries such as Afghanistan, Burma, Syria, Eritrea and Bhutan here on our doorstep in the East Bay.  The International Rescue Committee is an organization that resettles refugees locally, helping them with tasks such finding apartments, enrolling children in school, and helping them navigate the US health care and financial systems.  For the first few months after their arrival, grocery bills can be a problem for ...

3/27/2016 Sermon Discussion Questions (Oakland)

March 27, 2016
Patrick Vaughn
Date: 3/27/2016 - Easter Series: Resurrection Revolution Title: Magnificent Love Speaker: Patrick Vaughn Text: Mark 16:1-8 Reflection Quotes: O Lord, help me not to despise or oppose what I do not understand. - William Penn God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.  Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are ...

Holy Week Events and Guide

March 18, 2016
Three Sacred Days, One Act of Worship Join us as we journey together through the Easter Triduum, (pronounced “tree do ’em”) an ancient three-day celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus – Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Holy Saturday Easter Vigil. We encourage you to be part of this holistic experience that more fully engages us in the story that shapes and defines our lives and prepares us for Easter Sunday. Maundy Thursday On this night, we remember Jesus’ last meal with his disciples. He washed their feet and gave ...

Songs of Longing, Vol. 2 (Lent & Passiontide)

March 18, 2016
Eric Gilbert
This 2nd volume of "Songs of Longing" is now available for digital download! Christ Church East Bay offers a captivating 3 songs set that makes the journey through the wilderness of Lent, the sorrow of Passiontide (Holy Week), and points toward the hope found in Easter Resurrection. Please be sure to listen to and purchase our music here.

Go & Tell

March 15, 2016
Patrick Vaughn
Go and tell. These two words are jumping out at me as I have begun to study Mark 16:1-8 in preparation for the Easter sermon on 3/27. Go and tell. Really every gospel ends with this theme in mind. Matthew’s gospel echoes Mark with these exact words. Luke focuses on the theme of witness, people who go and tell the story of Jesus. Jesus in John’s gospel appears to the disciples and says, “As the Father has sent me so I am sending you.” Go and tell. Back in November at our members meeting I gave a gentle challenge to people to make a list of ...

3/13/2016 Sermon Discussion Questions

March 14, 2016
Bart Garrett
Date: 3/13/2016 Series: Where he leads . . . Title: When the Walls Fall Down Speaker: Bart Garrett Text: Mark 11:15-18; Mark 13:1-11 Reflection Quote: “You get to decide what to worship... Because here's something else that's true. In the day-to-day trenches of adult life, there is actually no such thing as atheism. There is no such thing as not worshipping. Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship. And an outstanding reason for choosing some sort of God or spiritual-type thing to worship -- be it J.C. or ...

Maundy Thursday in Parishes

March 10, 2016
Patrick Vaughn
Maundy Thursday is the day on which our Lord Jesus celebrated the Passover with his disciples, washed the disciples' feet, instituted the Eucharist, agonized in the Garden of Gethsemane, and experienced the kiss of betrayal by Judas Iscariot. The name "Maundy Thursday" derives from Jesus' words during the Last Supper, "A new command I give to you: love one another." The word maundy comes from the Latin word mandatum which means command. According to tradition, the church typically observes the following: the agape meal, the washing of feet, ...

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