Christ Church Newsletter - Week of August 21st, 2016

There’s a lot going on at Christ Church this week, so let’s get started. Be sure to check the calendar at the end of the newsletter for important reminders. Also go admire the New! Improved!

We remember Ruedi Vest
Last week I announced in Church that our old friend Ruedi Vest had passed away in Oregon, but I was remiss in not including the sad news in the newsletter. Ruedi was a longtime active member of Christ Church. He is especially remembered for bringing his remarkable talent as an actor to Sunday morning scripture readings. A number of parishioners travelled to Ashland for the memorial service. Please remember Emilie and the rest of Ruedi’s family in your prayers.

The Parish Profile has been Released!
Our Parish Profile which tells prospective Rectors about us, has been approved by Bishop Marc and is out there for the world to see. The search committee will now turn to the task of examining applications which will start coming in.

Rectory Update
The county has provided Building Site Approval. Since then the architects have prepared construction drawings for the general contractor so he can get firm bids on the project. In the next sixty days we should have firm pricing. To minimize our risk of cost growths, the committee has chosen the porcelain tile for wet areas, engineered flooring materials, window and door trim styles, and light fixtures. Appliances are also being specified before starting the construction.

The county is requiring us to plant ten replacement oak trees and is allowing us to plant them anywhere on the property. We have chosen to cut down some of the eucalyptus trees [non-native species] to make room. The ones we plan to remove are largely along the driveway and upper parking lot. We have tied orange ribbons around them so you can see which ones are on the cutting block. We will be the beneficiary of a county fire district program to remove eucalyptus trees for free.

Charlotte Diamond
We are working to present a concert by award-winning children’s entertainer Charlotte Diamond at Christ Church. The tentative date is January 15th. She usually performs to sold-out crowds, so we are very excited about this. It will be a joint Christ Church / Ventana School production. See Nancy Wilde for details.

Housekeeping items
Loretta Reid is looking for short term lodging for a female friend who is pursuing a PhD at Stanford,

The kitchen is long overdue for a deep cleaning, so we will have that done over Labor Day weekend. Why am I telling you this? Because if you have any personal items in the kitchen that you are particularly attached to, you need to remove them ASAP. If there is food in the refrigerator that should NOT be thrown away, please negotiate that with Gwen. Thank you.

And while we’re on the matter of housekeeping, please stop sneaking grand pianos into the parish hall. We don’t need them. We also don’t need spare microwave ovens. Or coffee pots. Or sofas. Or …

Ventana School
I seem to be up at the church fairly often lately, and whenever I go there while school is in session my heart is lifted up to see our campus alive with children. Happy noises arise from the lower lawn, science projects are happening in the Parish Hall, children are learning to love books in the revitalized Shires Library. There’s life everywhere. I urge you to join me mid-week in appreciating the overwhelming success of this wonderful ministry of our Church!

Our own Jenny Bishop is the art teacher at Ventana now, and we have asked her to leave her art space set up in the Parish Hall over the weekends so that we can see the students output and be drawn into this aspect of the school. Jenny has been using our Gabriel Loire windows to inspire her students.

Fall Adult Ed
Beginning September 21 at 6PM with dinner followed by the education at 7PM. On September 21 we will meet in the Parish Hall for a presentation by Rod Cardoza of the Abrahamic Alliance on Loving your Muslim Neighbor. This presentation will help us to understand the truth about the Muslim faith and the real goals of Islam. The web site explains that “Abrahamic Alliance International is a movement of Jews, Christians and Muslims who are deeply committed to loving the God of our father Abraham with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, and loving our neighbor as ourselves.

Zealot (The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth)
On Wednesday evenings (September 28, October 5 and 12) from 7:30 to 9:00 pm, friend of Christ Church, John Buenz, will offer a discussion based on the best seller Zealot by Reza Aslam.  Born in Iran as a Muslim, in the 80’s he moved to America and at a summer camp was introduced to Jesus. He completed his academic work in religious studies; and as a maturing Christian, published this book in 2014.

A review by the San Francisco Chronicle describes Zealot as a “tough-minded, deeply political (of the times of Jesus) book that does full justice to the real Jesus and honors him in the process”. It is a fine synthesis of scripture and thoughtful scholarship and reflection.  John does not plan this group to be a lecture but rather anticipates that members of the group will have read the book for purposes of discussion. His hope is that, as result of this discussion in three parts, participants will develop a clearer basis for making their own interpretation of the meaning of Jesus for themselves and our times. Group members will be encouraged to share their developing interpretation of the meaning of Jesus and the series unfolds.

Compassion Experience
What if you could travel to another country without ever leaving home?
What if you could walk a mile in another child's shoes?

I would like to invite each one of you, whether a youth, adult, or child in tow, to join us on an excursion to the Compassion International Experience on September 25th at 2 PM in Mountain View.  It is an immersive walk-through event designed to help us experience other cultures, the realities of global poverty, and how each of us can change the life of a child living half a world away.  It's my hope that it will challenge us to think about what role we as God-followers, have in ministering to the poor and orphans.  To think about how God shows up in dark corners and difficult situations.  And to engage with God's heart of justice and compassion.

It's free and family-friendly.  To learn more about the event, go to and click on "learn more below"

Please RSVP to me by August 29th as spaces fill up fast...especially the "right after church" spaces.  This will be last "showing" of this event in the Bay area for at least the next year.

Calendar (for additions or corrections, just reply to this email)
See also the Calendar on

Sun 8/28 10:00 – Sunday School volunteers meeting in the loft. (No youth group)
Wed 8/31 5:30 – Final BBQ of the season on the lower lawn

Sun 9/4: Youth group
Sun 9/11: No youth group
Sun 9/18: Youth group
Wed 9/21 6PM – Dinner. 7PM – Loving your Muslim Neighbor
Sat 9/24 7:30 – harmonizing rhythms in the Parish Hall
Sun 9/25: No youth group, meet in Mountain View at 2pm for Compassion Experience (email Polly for details)
Sun 9/25 & Mon 9/26 – Picture taking for new directory at the church. Call
800-521-4611 for alternate days and places.
Wed 9/28 7:30 – Book Group Zealot with John Buenz

Sat 10/1 – Oktoberfest
Wed 10/5 7:30 – Book Group Zealot with John Buenz
Wed 10/12 7:30 – Book Group Zealot with John Buenz