June 2020
Go Tell It On The Mountain
Monthly Newsletter
Skyland Community Church, United Church of Christ
Minister: Rev. Kevin Omi
Sunday Worship Service:
During COVID-19 Shelter-in-Place
Services will be online, check website link below
10:30 A.M.
May to mid-July Church Calendar

June 7 and 14
Sunday Online Worship at 10:30 A.M. with Rev. Kevin Omi
To connect by phone: dial 1 669 900 6833 and enter the Meeting ID: 239 585 779, followed by the # sign.
To connect via smartphone, tablet or computer: click https://zoom.us/j/239585779

June 3 and 10
Wednesday Online Community Check-in at 5 P.M.
To connect by computer, tablet, or smartphone: https://zoom.us/j/782093134
by phone: dial 1 669 900 6833 and enter the meeting id 782 093 134, followed by # sign.

June 4 and 11
Thursday Online Bible Study 
Introduction 8:45 A.M.
Sunday’s Scripture 9:45 A.M .
by computer, tablet, or smartphone: https://zoom.us/j/964496464
by phone: dial 1 669 900 6833 and enter the meeting id 964 496 464, followed by # sign.

Sunday, June 21 and 28 have new Zoom Meeting ID (below)
Online Worship at 10:30 A.M. with Rev. Jean Jeffress
To connect by phone: dial 1 669 900 6833 and enter the Meeting ID: 833 3487 6493 followed by the # sign.
To connect via smartphone, tablet or computer: click

Sunday, July 5, 12, 19 and 26 have new Zoom Meeting ID (below)
Online Worship at 10:30 A.M. with Rev. Melanie Weiner
To connect by phone: dial 1 669 900 6833 and enter the Meeting ID: 833 3487 6493 followed by the # sign.
To connect via smartphone, tablet or computer: click

see more upcoming event s on the Church Calendar

All Regularly Scheduled Events in Whitaker Hall
are on hold during Shelter-in-Place
Message from Reverend Kevin Omi
“Surely God”

from: Rev. Kevin Omi

My dear friends of Skyland Community Church, what a joy it is reflect on our journey together!

One of my favorite scriptures has been the words of Jacob, as he awoke at Bethel, after dreaming of angels ascending and descending between earth and heaven. With a sense of awe filling his being he says, “Surely the Lord is in this place—and I did not know it!”

I included this line in my first newsletter article and it is as true for us today as it was then. The spirit-led life is a constant journey of discovery of the movement from the earth to heaven and back again, from the mundane to the sacred, from the outer life to the inner life, and finding that there is no separation. There is always more light, truth, and hope to be found. Our season together has been filled with rediscovery of holiness within each person, holiness that is made manifest in our service to the community and within one another. We have reconnected with other mountain churches, the Bible, the Universal Christ, the schools, and helped make this be a safer place in which to live and grow – at every age.

You are in good hands – God’s hands – however you experience the knowledge that you are loved. You are in good hands – with one another – as you continue to pray and care for one another and your neighbors – both next door and around the world. You will be in good hands – as you prepare for the arrival of Rev. Melanie Weiner and find new ways of revisioning the role of Skyland Community Church as a new economy and way of life emerges.

Surely God has been in this place and we  did  know it. We proclaimed it together in deed, living Word, song, and silence. Thanks be to God! 

May God always hold you in the palm of God’s hand, and may you share that love, peace, and delight with everyone. 
reVision Action Teams News

"Mountain Hangout"
"Lunch and a Documentary"
are suspended until further notice
due to COVID-19
Fire Safe County Roads Action Team

The Loma Prieta School Board approved a plan to create a shaded fuel break on district property bordering Summit Road. The purpose of the shaded fuel break is to protect the safety of the children, the school staff and the school property. The plan was a cooperative effort by community volunteers, including members of the Skyland Church’s Fire Safe County Roads action team, the Santa Clara County Fire Safe Council, Santa Cruz County Fire, elements of CAL FIRE and the Santa Cruz Mountain Alliance. The development of the plan was a great opportunity for meeting and working with members of churches and other mountain and county groups.

This experience will serve all of us well as we expand the Fire Safe County Roads project to other key emergency escape routes throughout our community. This completed work created a shaded fuel break on the south side of Summit Road by the Loma Prieta School. CAL FIRE also worked diligently to create a shaded fuel break on the South West corner of the wooded area.

The shaded fuel break, which has been playfully referred to as “Frog Pond Park,” is providing an example of how to create a safe evacuation route to prevent tragedies like those of recent years in areas where massive wildfires have occurred.

This project is a step in creating safe escape routes in the event of an emergency and serves as a model that can be used throughout the county road system in our community.

The same cooperative effort between organizations will be needed to develop the action plan as we move forward for shaded fuel breaks along Summit & Highland Roads from Highway 17 to Mt. Bache Road and Soquel San Jose Road. The project has enjoyed the support and engagement from our Santa Cruz Supervisor John Leopold and key county agencies.

Al Feuerbach and Anne Evans created a short three-minute video to explain and motivate Summit area residents to support the grant application this Summer. You can watch the video here: https://youtu.be/SRDELtbcnCs
Email the reVision team: reVision@skylandchurch.com
For more information on the phases of reVision click here: http://skylandchurch.com/transitions /

For the Final Month of our Interim Period

For God’s holy presence amidst change, we pray. 
For comfort because loss is part of change, we pray. 
For Christ-like steadfastness during the challenges of transition and seasons of faith, we pray. 
For reassurance through frailty and failings, we pray. 
For the abundant creativity the Spirit provides, we pray. 
For our loved ones in this community of faith, we pray. 
For God’s children beyond this community, we pray.
Church Council News

Congregational Meeting held May 31, 2020 to approve the Annual Budget for the fiscal year 2020 -2021.

The congregation met on-line in a Zoom video and audio conference with 27 participants. Jackie Seymour called the meeting to order while Anne Evans provided an introduction and did the Zoom technicalities.

The budget and actual income and expenditures for the previous year were presented. Although both a surplus and a transfer of income was provided for in the previous budget they were not needed.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic there is much uncertainty in the months ahead regarding opening the church for our use, for rental and for hosting a harvest festival. However there is enough excess built into the budget to account for a lack of income from rental and harvest festival. A motion was made to increase the NCNC contribution from 8.5% to 10%. It was approved unanimously. With this modification the budget was approved as presented.

Discussion regarding rewriting the by-laws and cleaning before and after hall rental were brought up but will be discussed further in council. 

Submitted by your co-moderators:
Jackie Seymour
Anne Evans

Skyland Community Church Website under "Newsletters and More."
Missions Board News
From Tanzania:

Dear Skyland Church,

We at The Baobab Home hope that this email finds you safe and healthy and sheltering in. Don't worry, your favorite Tanzanian kids are all ok and they are handling their "new normal" like champs, as expected! We are braced for the worst and hoping for the best. On March 18, Tanzania closed all schools for a month, so our STA students are at their homes. Tanzania is holding steady at 24 confirmed cases, so we are hoping that we still have a chance for a very flat curve.

We are blessed with hot weather and wide-open spaces. We are reorganizing our 12-acre farm to ensure maximum safety of the Baobab kids and Moms, while still keeping the farm running strong. Sabra and Mariamu came back from boarding school and we decided to observe a one week isolation period while they live in the library.

What nicer place to be isolated than a library?

We have stockpiled food, soap and medicine, and yes, even toilet paper. Farm staff will be working around the kids, and distant from them. The school closure was abrupt so we could not give the children lessons or soap to take home. Our teachers are spending their self- isolation time calling all of their students and checking in.

Next week we will decide on a plan for how to keep our kids learning. All we know so far is that it’s going to involve reading, writing and gardening. It’s a Tanzanian hybrid of homeschooling and remote learning that we are calling “Off Road Learning”. We, just like you, are going to form new definitions of community as we are more united...from a distance.

We know that some of you, our donors and family, will soon face hard times yourselves. We are doing what we can to increase our self-sufficiency and need you less, but for now, we still need you a lot!
Baobab Missions
We are so fortunate. You've been helping us to prepare for adversity for a long time. We have water, a garden, animals and our own source of fuel and light. We have each other.
 Terri & Caito

The Baobab Home

More Mission Board: 
Update from Connie Durant for our friends in Fiji 

In January Skyland Church sponsored three students with a $450 yearly donation for 2020.

"In April of 2020 Kadavu Island was the hardest hit in Fiji by Tropical Cyclone Harold. Almost all communication systems were out, so it took some time to get the information, but the destruction was devastating. Thank God, no one was hurt, that's the major blessing. 

Skyland Church is supporting Naksaleka and Lagalevu villages which were hit especially hard and which are home to many of our school-fee sponsored students and their families. Farms were decimated so their usual supply of staples is gone. Certainly, the government and other relief agencies will step in and help, but by raising money we can provide food relief asap. 
Lagalevu, is a small settlement, with maybe a couple dozen houses, but only 2 were left standing. Our school fee partner, Rogo, is in Suva on the main island and will purchase food and send it on the ferry leaving on Tuesday next week. Her husband is in Kadavu and will pick up the food at the ferry and deliver it there."

Thankfully, Skyland Church and the Mission Board was able to donate the final $170 that enabled the food supplies to arrive. 

It's a small world and we are so blessed to help our neighbors around the world!

Respectfully submitted by Shannon Edwards, Mission Board


Inspiration for June
provided by Rev. Kevin Omi

"It is your destiny to see as God sees,
to know as God knows, to feel as God feels.
How is this possible? How?
Because divine love cannot defy its very self,
divine love will be eternally true to its own being,
and its being is giving all it can at the perfect moment.
And the greatest gift God can give is His own experience.
Every object, every creature, every man, woman and child
has a soul and it is the destiny of all,
to see as God sees, to know as God knows,
to feel as God feels, to be as God is."

- Meister Eckhart as quoted by David Holdefer
(from Love Poems from God)
A letter of conscience
By Ann Baier

The acute crises of this past week seem like a storm surge in an ongoing current of systemic inequality. The poor and people of color have long suffered disproportionately under many circumstances. Among those inequalities, are the ways that poor young people of color have been targeted for recruitment by the military. At the same time, people of conscience have been working on policies and practices with respect to recruitment, and also to the upcoming vote on the Selective Service. I believe young people have many good ideas for service to community and country, and it would be good for policymakers to listen and take their ideas into serious consideration. Among those ideas: end the draft and provide clear opportunities for education and productive work that is peaceful, life-giving and sustaining, rather than destructive and violent.

While the National Commission on Military, National and Public Service calls to expand selective service to women, many people of faith and conscience, including Truth in Recruitment (TIR), a project of Santa Barbara Friends Meeting (Quakers)  https://truthinrecruitment.org/  are calling for the an end to draft registration for all! 

Two bills have been introduced to Congress:  H.R. 5492 , calls for the elimination of the Selective Service System and of past penalties to young men who did not register. A second bill,  HR 6415 , would force young women to register for a military draft, as well as further expand military recruitment and the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corp (JROTC).  I have written to my representatives, encouraging them to support H.R. 5492 and oppose H.R. 6415.

Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL)  https://www.fcnl.org/action/act-online  has an on-line action center. One easy way to contact your representatives regarding these bills, or any issue of concern, is to “Write Your Own Letter to Congress” at  https://fcnl.quorum.us/campaign/25332/  

Please contact me directly if you would like to discuss this further or learn more about these topics. My email is   farmorganic@comcast.net .

In peace,

Note from your Treasurer
for final month of our '19-'20 fiscal year:

Pledge income is $135,615 which is $5,615 above budget.
Offerings are $-1,167 below budget.
No Hall Rentals for 3 months due to facility shutdown required canceling all events, but still $555 above expectations.
Expenses are $15,525 below budget primarily due to minimal Pastor Search expenses.
Fiscal year to date operating income exceeded expenses by $1,381. After including budgeted ‘18-’19 surplus and One Time transfer from Special Funds, our Operating Net or Surplus is $29,131 which can be used as needed during ’20-’21 year.
A $10,00 donation was recently received for Facilities Maintenance Fund which now has $38,717 balance.
Capital improvement Fund has $24,917 balance.
These two Funds combined should cover the restroom remodel and roof repair.
23 Pledges for ’20-’21 year have been received for $137,900 total. This includes 4 new, 9 increases, and 4 decreases. Last year we had 26 Pledges totaling $137,090.
During the current “Shelter In Place” restrictions please mail your pledge and other donations to
Skyland Community Church
P.O. Box 245
Los Gatos, CA 95031-0245
We are able to accept credit card payments for pledge, general and special offerings if that is more convenient than check or cash. See either Jan or myself after service for these transactions once we are able to meet together again.
Here is our operating finances as of May. 30 for our 2019-2020 fiscal year.
Gerald Alonzo, Treasurer
Skyland Community Church, United Church of Christ
25100 Skyland Road, Los Gatos, CA 95033
phone: 408-353-1310
USPS mail: Skyland Church
P.O. Box 245
Los Gatos, CA 95031-0245