News from Grace Episcopal Church ~ Martinez, California
June 13, 2019 
Scripture of the Week
" Since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God. And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us . "     Romans 5:1-5
"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. During the summer we continue to offer Nursery Care. School age children are invited to join their families in the Sanctuary. We provide coloring and drawing materials, books, and soft toys, as well as a children's area for children who prefer not to sit in the pews with their families.
Youth Group - Let's have a party! 

THIS Saturday, June 15 from 4-7 pm, the Youth Group will be having an end of the year party. Food, games, painting, and a movie will be provided.  
Bring a friend to church day!
THIS Sunday, June 16 
 
Why is it that we are all so willing to share the latest and best restaurant, diet, or internet bargain with our acquaintances, but feel strange talking about the most important thing in our lives - our faith in God? In order to encourage one another to demonstrate our commitment to the importance of Christian community and the necessity for all of us to help for it to grow, Grace is hosting "Bring a friend to church day" on Sunday, June 16. If there is someone that you have been thinking about inviting to church but haven't had the nerve, now is the time. The service will be followed by our Faithful Forum "Ask the clergy a question," so the timing is perfect! 
Faithful Forums are back!

Grace offers monthly educational forums on broad-ranging topics like The Dead Sea Scrolls, Episcopal Polity, Recycling, and Emergency Preparedness for congregations. These take place in the Parish Hall following our 10 a.m. service (approximately 11:30). 
 
THIS Sunday, June 16, we will wrap up our forum season as Rev. Deb, Rev. Molly and Rev. Walter host an Open Forum called "Ask the clergy a question." No topics are off-limits! Come with your questions about liturgy, theology, and church polity.  
 
Here is a quick peek at coming attractions in our Faithful Forum series beginning in August:
August 18, "Winter Nights" (sponsored by Outreach)
September 15, Justice Ministries, St. Mary the Virgin
October 20, The Rev. Canon Abbott Bailey, Canon to the Ordinary 
Wildlife at Grace

Up here on this holy mountain (okay, hill), we are often blessed with encounters with all kinds of God's creatures. This week we met a new friend, a baby barn owl who had apparently decided our owl house was too hot to stay in! Luckily, we knew who to call, and parishioner and wildlife expert Pam Nave arrived on short notice. Our own "bird whisperer" promptly tamed the (seemingly) savage baby and took him off to a new residence in a safe place!  
Special Offering this Sunday for the
Rector's Discretionary Fund
 
The Vestry discussed the need to have Rev. Deb's discretionary fund replenished in an intentional way each month. To this end, we have designated the third Sunday of each month for a special offering to this fund that truly helps us all lean into our mission of "Working together to welcome, support and serve all God's people." Look for the special envelope tucked in your bulletin each month. If you have any questions, please see Tina Reich. As always, thank you for your generosity!
Grace Book Group
 
Read any good books lately? Want to participate in a book discussion group? Come drop in on the Grace Book Club! We meet on the third Wednesday of the month. We'd love to see you! Our next get-together is next week on Wednesday, June 19, at 6:30 p.m., at Smooth Season restaurant at Muir Station shopping center, when we will discuss "small great things" by Jodi Picoult.  For more information call/text Jennifer Sabroe at (925) 383-8386.

Bible Study for Everyone!

Each Wednesday at 10 a.m. we offer Holy Eucharist followed by Bible Study in our Chapel.
 
On Wednesday, June 26, we will begin a new curriculum for the first half of the Season after Pentecost. We will be using Kevin A. Wilson's book, "Conversations with Scripture: the Law." "Scripture contains many laws about which Christians are perplexed. If the Bible contains laws, shouldn't those laws be followed? What does the law that prohibits reaping a harvest to the very edges of your field mean in modern times? Kevin Wilson offers fresh insights into the meaning of the Law for today." The book is available on AmazonHowever, as always, you do not need to purchase the book to take part.
When Rev. Deb arrived approximately two years ago, she created a survey about Worship and Liturgy at Grace. This updated survey contains follow-up questions about Worship and Liturgy at Grace, as well as some other topics.
Individual responses are anonymous. The aggregate responses will be viewed by the Worship and Liturgy Committee and appropriate staff members.
 
Please help your church leadership by answering these 10 questions. (It should only take 5 minutes). If you prefer to take a paper version of the survey, please let  Rev. Deb know. Many thanks! 
The Online Church Directory is Live!!
Members of Grace may now join the online directory. Please contact the Parish Office to confirm your email address and phone number. You will then be sent information/instructions to join.
New Welcoming Committee
Please join us!
Meeting on June 23
 
Our beloved congregation is growing! Alleluia! Let's take a look at how we welcome new people into our church family and make sure we are doing everything we can to ensure they have a wonderful first experience that inspires them to come back for more! Please join Tina Reich at the first meeting to kick of the Welcoming Committee here at Grace on Sunday, June 23 at 9am in the fellowship hall.  
Can't make it? Make sure you give Tina your ideas: (925)266-0567 or   deadheadtina63@att.net. Thank you!
Summer music at Grace
This week we bid a grateful (and temporary) farewell to our wonderful choir, which is going on summer break. Many thanks to all of our singers for their ministry!

Their absence provides a hole in our 10 a.m. worship - and an opportunity for closet musicians to make themselves known. If you sing or play an instrument and are willing to share your talents for even ONE SUNDAY during the summer months, we would be most grateful. This gives folks a chance who might be shy or think they are too busy to join the choir full-time to share their talents.  Please contact  Music Director Arthur Omura if you are interested!
A message from the Casserole Patrol  
The Casserole Patrol is one of Grace's most important pastoral ministries, as it provides meals to those who, for one reason or another, can benefit from having a meal delivered to them.  
 
Our supply is running very low and we have people in need. We need your help replenishing the freezer. Casseroles should be frozen, or freezable, and preferably the size of 4-6 servings (or less.) Please label the casserole with a description, and the date it was prepared/frozen.  
 
If you can contribute or are in need, please email Rev Deb.
Are you a Climate Champion?
 
The Episcopal Church has been acting in care of the Earth, our fragile island home, for years. We now invite you to explore an exciting web-based tool that is helping Episcopalians live more sustainably,   Sustain Island Home. It is a hopeful, fun app that enables families to measure their carbon footprint, take actions to reduce it, and aggregate our impact within our parishes, across the Diocese, and nationally. As Presiding Bishop Michael Curry reminds us, "All of God's creation is interconnected. The love that thrust the stars into the heavens themselves is the same love that gave birth and created the earth itself and all of the earth's children, wherever they may be." For more about the app please visit  https://www.diocal.org/climate . Contact Nancy Grove to learn how you can get involved in this ministry  nbgrove102@gmail.com. Like us on Facebook!
Your Community of Christ Needs You!

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. We have several ministries that are in need of additional volunteers, including Eucharistic Ministers who assist the priest during the Holy Eucharist; Members of the Altar Guild, who help prepare the church for worship; Sunday School and Youth Group volunteers for the crucial task of forming our youth; and Acolytes, young people between the ages of 10 and 18 who assist with the liturgy. Please consider thoughtfully and prayerfully what you can do for the good of the church. Contact Rev. Deb (revdeb@gracechurchmtz.org) and she will direct you to the right person!
The Way of Love: with Bishop Michael Curry

The Way of Love is a new podcast from Presiding Bishop Michael Curry.   This episodic podcast offers more ways to engage with the Way of Love, Practices for a Jesus-Centered Life, The Episcopal Church's intentional commitment to a set of practices as a way to follow Jesus. Audiences can listen to stories of people from around the Church as they put the Way of Love practices of Turn, Learn, Pray, Worship, Bless, Go, Rest, into action. You can find episodes  here.
Flower and Candle Dedications

We are blessed by having fresh flowers on our altar each week. These are paid for by parishiners who wish to dedicate flowers (or candles) in thanksgiving or memory of loved ones. There are many open dates available on the flower and candle dedication calendar, located in the Narthex. When signing up for a date on the chart, please be sure to also write your name on the corresponding date in the flower dedication notebook (located on the little table below the chart). Suggested donation $35. The candle dedication notebook on the table under the bulletin board. Suggested donation $5.
Coffee Hour News!
The sign-up sheet has been filled through August. Please check it to be sure you know your assigned Sunday. Questions:  Email Coffee Hour Coordinator Tina Reich or leave a note on the sign-up clipboard. Please remember that if you can't do your assigned date, you are asked to make arrangements for a substitute.   
Yoga at Grace!
We welcome certified Yoga Instructor Noah Yuzna every  Tuesday evening at 6:15 p.m. to conduct a 60-minute yoga class.  All levels are welcome and modifications are 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.  
SAVE THE DATE!

The Diocese of California will hold a
Beloved Community Training Day in the East Bay this fall at St. Paul's, Oakland on Saturday, September 21. 

The day will include required training sessions for Eucharistic Visitors, Eucharistic Ministers, and Whole & Healthy Church Training, along with an array of workshops for lay leaders in all areas of ministry.

Registration will open in mid-summer.

When: Saturday, September 21
Where: St. Paul's, Oakland, 114 Montecito Avenue
Contact: Amy Cook, Working Group Head for Faith Formation, amyc@diocal.org

  C.O.R.E. Homeless Outreach donations
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. This is an ongoing project, so we are requesting:
  • Hygiene items including (but not limited to) soap, shampoo, oral care, shower wipes, shaving supplies, feminine hygiene items
  • Incontinence products (e.g. "Depend") (men's and women's) all sizes
  • Sleeping bags
  • Blankets (moving blankets are inexpensive and durable)
  • 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
  • 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). Please leave donations in the Narthex.

Grace Episcopal Church Martinez is on Amazon Smile. If you are shopping at Amazon, simply go to the Grace Martinez Amazon Smile link and we will receive a portion of their sale to you.  Spread the word!

Do you have an announcement?
If you have a parish-related announcement for the bulletin or Grace Notes - meeting reminders, upcoming events, special requests, etc. - please email the text of your announcement to the Parish Office by end of day on Tuesday. Thank you! 

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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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