News from Grace Episcopal Church ~ Martinez, California
July 19, 2018 
Scripture of the Week

" As [Jesus] went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things...And wherever he went, into villages or cities or farms, they laid the sick in the marketplaces, and begged him that they might touch even the fringe of his cloak; and all who touched it were healed. "

Mark 6:34, 56
"Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs."  Jesus


At Grace, we have Godly Play (Sunday School) during the school year, but children and youth share in the ministry of the church year-round, serving as acolytes, readers, and oblation bearers. 
 
THIS SUNDAY: Godly Play is out for the summer but young people are always welcome to join us in the sanctuary for worship. There is a children's area near the piano at the rear of the sanctuary with toys, books, and coloring materials for children who do not enjoy sitting in the pews.  There is Nursery Care for babies and young toddlers in the education building.
 
Thank you Grace parishioners!

This past Sunday we discovered that our friend James, who comes to the 10 o'clock service, had an accident in which he lost consciousness. While he was being treated at the hospital, his dog "Sid" was taken to the pound. By the time he was well enough to get Sid back, James did not have the funds to retrieve him. Many parishioners contributed to help James get Sid back and I am happy to report that we picked up Sid on Tuesday. Both James and Sid are very grateful for our assistance.
 
Parish Administrator out of the office this week

Jennifer will be back from her Alaskan cruise next week.  Please be patient with any clerical glitches the rector may make in the interim!
Faithful FILM Forum with food!

St. Paul seems to be undergoing a period of popularity right now, including being the topic of our Wednesday Bible Study at Grace. We are finding him so fascinating that we have decided to screen the recent film "Paul: Apostle of Christ" at Grace THIS Sunday, July 22, following the 10 a.m. service.  Everyone is welcome to come and watch the film, which is approximately two hours long.  Thanks to the Bible Study group, there will be "movie food," like hot dogs and popcorn, to eat during the film. Rev. Deb will be there to answer any questions that may come up. Please be advised that the film is unrated, but has some violent and upsetting content (much like the Bible). 
Bible Study for Everyone!
On Wednesday mornings at Grace at 10 a.m. we celebrate the Eucharist followed by Bible study. We are currently studying the letters of Paul, which make up about two-thirds of our New Testament. We are using Church 
of England bishop and theologian N.T. Wright's series, "Paul for Everyone." Next Wednesday we will read Galatians 3:1-9 and consider the questions: "What does it mean to be Christian"? "What does it mean to be in Christ"? and "What is the relationship between faith and the law"? All are welcome!
We Belong to Each Other: 
an Interfaith Benefit Concert

The Contra Costa County Sheriff's office recently announced that it will be severing ties with The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency.   The timing of the contract's demise means that many of the families of those being held at the county jail are now at risk of being moved to out of state ICE detention centers - away from family and their lawyers.  

The Interfaith Council of Conta Costa County is sponsoring an event to raise bail funds for families with loved ones in ICE Detention in West Contra Costa County.

Sunday, July 29th, at 6:30 p.m.
Mt. Diablo Unitarian Universalist Church
 
You can join the Interfaith Justice Choir by attending the pre-concert practice at  5:30 pm.   For more info,  JusticeChoirCCC@gmail.com.
 
There is no charge for admission. We welcome your free will offering to the "Freedom for Immigrants" bail fund at the door and throughout the evening.  Refreshments and time to dialogue with performers/speakers will be provided. Tamales will be for sale by one of the families. 
Diocesan Nominations process closing


The Diocesan Committee on Nominations is seeking individuals interested in running for diocesan offices. There are open positions on the Standing Committee, which serves as the Bishop's Council of Advice and has broad responsibilities for oversight of diocesan affairs, and the Executive Council, which is the vestry of the diocese. Elections are held at the Annual Diocesan Convention in the fall. Nominations close on July 31. More information can be found at  the Diocesan website. If you are interested in seeking election, contact  Rev. Deb.
Interfaith Disaster Preparedness Effort looking for volunteers
The Contra Costa Interfaith Emergency Preparedness Group Meeting will take place on Tuesday, August 2, from  11:30am to 1pm  at Walnut Creek United Methodist Church. They are  aiming to have representatives from all area churches, including Grace. If you'd like to know more, please contact The Rev. Will McGarvey
Yoga at Grace
Yoga is coming to Grace! Starting on Tuesday, August 7, certified Yoga Instructor Noah Yuzna will be here Tuesday evenings at 6:15 p.m. to conduct a 60 minute yoga class.  All levels are welcome and modifications will be available for folks with limited mobility.  Classes are open to the community and there is no set cost.  Participants are invited to contribute what they can for each class.  Invite your friends!
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LUAU!
Saturday, August 18
Share Aloha with this FUNdraiser dinner event, including Hawaiian music and dancers, hosted by Saint Christopher's Guild.  
Tickets now on sale! 
$25 (General); $10 (age 6-12); Free age 5 and under
Contact Sandy Taylor at (925) 458-5040 or   email 
  Tell your family and friends! 
All Parish Work Day

We have a beautiful campus and many "angels" who help maintain it, but bigger jobs require all hands on deck. Please set aside Saturday, August 25 for an All Parish Work Day. We have quite a long task list, including:

- Completing painting the Parish Office Doors
- Cleaning of gutters
-Clean up of the back of the Parish Hall
- Washing of Windows
- Roof flashing repair
- Sign placement
and other fun projects!

All able-bodied parishioners are welcome to help and folks with physical limitations are invited to come and supervise!  We will provide a.m. coffee and snacks, as well as pizza for lunch.  Work is fun when we do it together! Please come and help! Community service hours available for teens!
 
Supporting C.O.R.E. Homeless Outreach

Grace Church is partnering with the C.O.R.E. Homeless Outreach team to assist our homeless brothers and sisters. C.O.R.E stands for Coordinated Outreach Referral and Engagement. It is a program of the Housing and Homeless Services Division of Contra Costa County Health Services. Grace will be providing the C.O.R.E. team with needed items to distribute to individuals suffering from homelessness. Requested items are:

- Backpacks - ideally large capacity, durability is less important as they are frequently lost or stolen after a few weeks/months
- Healthy food - preferable non-perishable items that don't require cooking, a can opener, or good teeth. Pull-top cans are good.
- Bottles of water
- Hygiene items including (but not limited to) soap, shampoo, oral care, shower wipes, shaving supplies, feminine hygiene items
- Socks
- Sunscreen
- Pet food (in particular, wet food in pull-top cans). Other pet goodies would be appreciated too!

We also encourage parishioners to consider developing the habit of thinking of our homeless neighbors when shopping (i.e. picking up an extra item or two) and traveling (bringing home the hotel soaps/shampoo).

Parishioners are invited to make donations of items by leaving them in the bin in the Narthex (labeled "C.O.R.E. Outreach"), and the members of the C.O.R.E. team will pick them up and distribute them while doing their mobile outreach work in the local community.
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School Backpacks/Supplies Drive 
 
Ready, Set, Go! Grace's Annual School Backpack/Supplies Drive is underway! The backpacks have been ordered (60), so let the shopping begin!  Click here to download a pdf of the Suggested School Supplies List (by grade level) from Martinez Junior High. Hard copies will be available in the Narthex and Parish Hall. Please leave your donations in the labeled box in the Narthex.  

Youth Representatives sought

Each year the Diocese of California holds its Annual Convention to address the business of the church, including election of lay and clergy officials, consideration of resolutions, and approval of the diocesan budget.  In September, the Contra Costa Deanery, of which Grace is a member, will select two youth appointees to the Convention. This individual will be able to observe and offer feedback on the work of the Convention. We would be delighted if one of this year's CCD youth delegates came from Grace, Martinez.  If you are interested or would like to nominate one of our youth members for this role, please let  Rev. Deb know.
Your Community of Christ Needs You!
"Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good."  1 Corinthians 12:4-7
 
Just like the early Christians, we are a community of many different people with many talents and we need everyone to provide for the community. The Altar Guild ministry is currently in need of additional volunteers. Members of the Altar Guild work in teams and help prepare the church for worship . Please consider thoughtfully and prayerfully if this is a ministry that you could do for the good of the church. Contact  Rev. Deb revdeb@gracechurchmtz.org or Altar Guild Director Elaine Quigley.

 

 

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Serving the community of Martinez
and Contra Costa County since 1868.

 
Our Mission:
Working together to welcome,
support, and serve all God's people.
 
 
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