Weekly News from the Episcopal Diocese of California
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Weekly News from the Episcopal Diocese of California
February 22, 2017

The 11th annual Absalom Jones and Richard Allen celebration

This past Saturday, the diocese of California put on the 11th annual service of celebration remembering the Rev.s Absalom Jones and Richard Allen. Jones and Allen were both born slaves who bought their own freedom in 1784 and 1783, respectively. Freedom allowed them to be great evangelists and the pair founded the Free African Society together in 1787. Two years later, Allen left to stay true to his Methodist values as the society took up Quaker principles. Jones went on to help the society build a church, and in 1794, “The African Church” was made St. Thomas African Episcopal Church in the diocese of Pennsylvania.

Episcopal Church Sues Trump Administration Over Travel Ban

[NPR | February 20] A church in Washington state is suing the federal government for preventing it from practicing its faith. The Episcopal diocese says the refugee ban stops them from welcoming strangers in need. A church is suing the Trump administration, claiming it can't perform one of its religious duties. That duty is resettling refugees, and the suit comes from the Episcopal Diocese of Olympia in Washington state. Will James of member station KNKX reports.
Banner: In collaboration with the Afro Anglican Commission, the Union of Black Episcopalians, and the African Methodist Episcopal Church, the diocese of California put on the 11th annual celebration of the Rev.s Absalom Jones and Richard Allen at St. Paul’s, Oakland, last Saturday. For more information and photos, see In the News. Photo credit: Sara Yoe.

A living history of ministry for the LGBTQ+ community — Part 3: Outreach, organizing, and becoming official

To stay true to The Parsonage’s liturgical calendar “birthday,” an open house to celebrate their first anniversary was held on June 6, 1982 — one week after Pentecost. Although Bishop Swing’s schedule didn’t allow him to be present, he wrote a note to the 100 guests praising The Parsonage with “delight that we are backing up our commitment” to support the gay and lesbian community, and a couple of weeks later on the 21st he commissioned the third group of 13 Parsons at Grace Cathedral, again with some 250 people in attendance.
From the DioCal Intern Blog

The call of the wild in the urban jungle

It was a few weeks ago that I had a panic attack while making my way back to the Church Divinity School of the Pacific campus — my home in Berkeley. Most of the day I’d felt like something wasn’t quite right: I couldn't focus on my tasks, my attention span was nonexistent in the myriad of meetings I attended, and there was a restlessness in my bones that I couldn't shake. 

Day of Discernment 

Would you like to explore some new discernment practices? Are you discerning a call to ministry within the church — either lay or ordained? Join for this one day workshop, grounded in the Baptismal Covenant, that can help frame your journey. While the focus is on discernment for ministry in daily life, please note that Day of Discernment is a pre-requisite for application for postulancy in the Diocese of California.

When: Saturday, February 25, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
WhereSt. James, 1540 12th Avenue, Oakland
Cost: $25; fee covers materials and lunch; scholarship assistance is available
Contact: Melissa Ridlon,

50+ Anniversary Evensong at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco

Grace Cathedral and The Rt. Rev. Marc Handley Andrus, Bishop of California, invite couples who have been married or partnered for 50 years or more to celebrate their years together at this festal Evensong sung by the Cathedral Camerata. Couples are invited to renew their vows to each other during the service and the bishop will pronounce God’s blessing. To receive an invitation for yourself or for a couple you know, please submit a request.

When: Sunday, February 26, 2 p.m. (couples are photographed); 3 p.m. (Evensong service); Reception directly follows
Where: Grace Cathedral, 1100 California Street, San Francisco

Health and wellness grants available through Episcopal Impact Fund Action Networks

The Episcopal Impact Fund is kicking off 2017 with $75,000 in new grant funding for organizations that are working to create pathways out of poverty! This year's granting focus area is health and wellness. Attend an Action Network meeting in your deanery and bring your ideas of organizations that are making a difference in your region. Action Network meetings are open to all members of the community, including staff and board members of nonprofits interested in learning more about this funding opportunity. Each Action Network will meet twice in 2017. The following is a schedule of the remaining first meetings by deanery:

Alameda Action Network Meeting
Tuesday, February 28, 7 p.m.
Where: Our Saviour, 1011 Harrison Street, Oakland

Peninsula Action Network Meeting
Thursday, March 2, 7 p.m.
Where: Holy Child and St. Martin, 777 Southgate Avenue, Daly City

Southern Alameda — To be announced


Ashes to go! now features an "ashes to go" page with a full list of Ash Wednesday offerings. Feel free to share this page with your community. Is your congregation offering ashes to go? Please send Dani Scoville,, your congregation name and exact location of where you will be offering ashes.

DioCal Lenten Carbon Fast

With the season of Lent quickly approaching, Bishop Marc is inviting all members of the diocese to join him in a Lenten ‘carbon fast’ — a prayerful effort to reduce daily actions that damage God’s creation. You can find many resources and ideas for your carbon fast through Interfaith Power & Light, the Episcopal Church Foundation, and the Anglican Communion Environmental Network — to name a few! For support and prayers, the Communications Working Group invites you to reach out to DioBytes,, to share your carbon fast plans with fellow readers!

‘These are our bodies’: talking about faith and sexuality in youth and family ministry

Parents, clergy, and lay leaders are invited to the fifth annual CDSP Youth Ministry Symposium with keynote speaker Leslie A. Choplin, D.Ed.Min., co-author of These Are Our Bodies: Talking Faith and Sexuality at Church and at HomeChoplin has spent a decade as a director of Christian education, sexual misconduct prevention trainer and speaker. The symposium will include opportunities for training and certification in safe church practices in accordance with the national policy.

When: Saturday, March 18, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; those taking advanced Safeguarding training will continue to 5:30 p.m.
WhereChurch Divinity School of the Pacific, 2451 Ridge Road, Berkeley
Cost: $25 (general); $75 (with train the trainer). Scholarship and travel funding is available
Contact: For registration, Alissa Fencsik, For Provincial or Northern California scholarship aid, Anne Clarke, For Diocese of California scholarship aid or questions about Safeguarding training, Caren Miles,

New preacher announced to teach with Bishop Marc at preaching symposium at the Bishop’s Ranch — Register today!

There are relational and scriptural foundations for preaching justice. The Diocese of California and Church Divinity School of Pacific offer a preaching symposium this year that will look at Jesus and Paul through the lens of advocates for justice, and will explore the concept of interbeing, the relational base for doing justice work, including preaching justice. The preaching symposium is offered as a time of learning, inspiration, refreshment, and community. You will find new companions for your journey as a preacher, hear some great sermons, gain new perspectives on the art of preaching, and not be asked to preach yourself! Join Bishop Marc and the Rev. Canon Dr. Sandye Wilson for this preaching symposium designed for clergy who preach regularly. The Rev. Canon Dr. Sandye, a native of Baltimore, Maryland, Sandye has been, since 2004, rector of The Episcopal Church of St. Andrew and Holy Communion, South Orange, NJ, a GreenFaith parish full of diversity and vitality, focused on being the presence of Jesus in the world. A contemplative activist, she is passionate about connecting the dots of justice and strong lay leadership, strengthening congregations, coaching clergy, and nurturing young people in their vocation in the world.
When: Tuesday, March 21 to Friday, March 24
WhereThe Bishop’s Ranch, 5297 Westside Road, Healdsburg
Registration: click here
Cost: (3 nights/9 meals) $600 single occupancy (very limited number of rooms); $490 double occupancy; $440 standard occupancy (3-4 per cottage); $340 commuter/camping rate; Scholarship funds are available.

At Home in Exile book discussion with author Dr. Russell Jeung

At the annual Executive Council retreat, the group selects a book to read over the year, creating a book group. This year Canon Stefani suggested At Home in Exile: Finding Jesus among my Ancestors and Refugee Neighbors — a memoir of living in Oakland. Executive Council will have a conversation with Dr. Jeung about his book at Santiago / St James, Oakland on March 21. There will be expanded discussions that day about community organizing and living in mutuality within neighborhoods. Executive Council is inviting the diocese to join the conversation — even if you are not able to finish the book by March 21!

When: Tuesday, March 21, 5:30 p.m. (appetizers); 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. (book discussion)
WhereSantiago / St James, 1540 12th Avenue, Oakland
Book: At Home in Exile on Amazon
RSVP: Facebook event

Chrism Mass 2017

The annual Chrism Mass and lunch for clergy is scheduled for Tuesday, April 11, 12:10 p.m. at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco. At this Mass the oils for baptism, confirmation, and healing are blessed and clergy are invited to renew their ordination vows. Lunch will follow. If you plan to attend the Mass and lunch, please RSVP here by Thursday, April 6. For more information or questions, please contact Jennifer Seaman. Reminder: Please bring your own containers for your holy oil.

When: Tuesday, April 11, 12:10 p.m.
WhereGrace Cathedral, 1100 California Street, San Francisco
Deadline: Thursday, April 6 
Contact: Jennifer Seaman,


Miracle Fragments at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco

Miracle Fragments is a unique light art experience by our 2016 Artists in Residence Benjamin Bergery and Jim Campbell whose work “Jacob’s Dream: A Luminous Path” glows in the North Transept. The evening begins with an artist walk-through at 6 p.m. and continues for drop-in viewing until 9:30 p.m. The artists will draw on their earlier art-light transformation of Saint-Sulpice in Paris to evoke Biblical miracles with light and sound throughout the darkened cathedral.

When: Friday, February 24 and Saturday, February 25, 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Where: Grace Cathedral, 1100 California St, San Francisco
Cost: Free


Other upcoming events at Grace Cathedral

ODC Behind the Scenes
Wednesday, February 22; 7:30 p.m.; free

Elegy for Ghost Ship
Thursday, February 23; 8 p.m.; free

Holy Hikes at Land's End, San Francisco

Each month, Holy Hikes leads a Eucharistic hike through one of the Bay Area’s beautiful green spaces. The hikes draw a diverse demographic from young children to seniors. Join Holy Hikes on Saturday, February 25 at Land's End. They will meet at the parking lot at the Land's End Lookout by the old Sutro Baths in San Francisco. From there they will hike to the labyrinth at Eagle’s Point, which overlooks the ocean and Golden Gate Bridge. After allowing time to walk the labyrinth, they will finish the liturgy by the shore and then hike back. The hike will be about about 2 miles round-trip and fairly easy except for the last 1000 feet of the trail before the labyrinth. That segment includes about 200 stairs down to get to the labyrinth and shore. All are welcome to attend; no RSVP needed.

When: Saturday February 25, 9:50 a.m. (gather); 10 a.m. (hike)
Where: Land's End, 700 Point Lobos Avenue, San Francisco
Contact: the Rev. Justin R. Cannon,

Book reading and signing to benefit Good Shepherd, Berkeley

Join Berkeley author the Rev. Ellen L. Ekstrom for a reading from her forthcoming novel, Ascalon and a Q&A Session about her books and her small press, Whyte Rose & Violet, Scribes. Her books will be available for purchase and she will sign them upon request. All proceeds go to Good Shepherd’s operating budget. Ekstrom was ordained to the sacred order of vocational deacons on December 7, 2002, at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco, by the Rt. Rev. William E. Swing (Ret.). Prior to her assignment at Good Shepherd, Ekstrom was the parish deacon on staff at St. Mark's, Berkeley for nine years, a chaplain at Kaiser Oakland for the Emergency and ICU Units, and a chaplain at the North County Emergency Women’s Shelter in Berkeley. She is still active in ministry, which includes social justice issues and work with women in crisis. 

When: Saturday, February 25, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Good Shepherd, 1823 Ninth Street, Berkeley

San Francisco Renaissance Voices presents “LADY, MY LADY” at St. Stephen’s, Belvedere

You will delight in lovely treasures of the 15th and early 16th centuries, including the Johannes Ockeghem’s rarely performed Missa Ma Maitresse and other musical gems dedicated to The Lady and ladies of the Renaissance including: Fayrfax’s Eterne Laudis Lilium (from the Lambeth Choirbook), Victoria’s Versa est in luctum, Palestrina’s Susanna ab Improbis Senibus, Handl’s Tota Pulchra est, songs by Lady Mary Dering, Giovanni Pietro Biandra, Blanche de Castille and Maroie de Diergnau, madrigals by Casulana, Hassler, Josquin, Luzzaschi, Rossi and Steffens, and poetry by Christine de Pizan, Hadewijch of Antwerp, Teresa of Avila, Mechtild of Magdeburg, and Devora Ascarelli.

When: Sunday, February 26, 4 p.m.
Where: St. Stephen’s, 3 Bayview Avenue, Belvedere
Cost: $20-30 at the door
Tickets: In advance,
Contact: J Jeff Badger, 415.650.6258

Celebrate Shrove Tuesday with Pancakes and Live Music at Incarnation, San Francisco

Every year Incarnation, San Francisco, hosts their annual Pancake Supper to celebrate Shrove Tuesday. The menu features different selections of pancakes accompanied by live music, courtesy of pianist Vaughn Jones. Food is served continuously from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Seating is limited and is first come, first served. A fun event for friends and family!

When: Tuesday February 28, 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Incarnation, 1750 29th Avenue, San Francisco
Cost: Adult/Teen: $12 per person, Child (under 12): $6 per person
Contact: Mathew Chacko 415-564-2324 or


Other upcoming events at Incarnation

Journey to Rwanda and Kenya with SFSU professor, Dr. Barry Levine – An Incarnation Travelogue Series
Saturday, March 4, 5:30 p.m., free. Please bring a dish to share at the potluck.

Shawnette Sulker (soprano), Victor Khodadad (tenor), in vocal recital that includes arias from opera, operetta, and musicals
Saturday March 11, 7:30 p.m.; $20 (general), $15 (seniors/students)

Patrick Galvin (violin) and Jungeun Kim (piano) in a chamber music concert featuring works by Beethoven, Debussy, Franck
Saturday March 25, 7:30 p.m.; $20 (general), $15 (seniors/students)

40 days, 40 items, 40 blessings — a Lent invitation from diocesan UTO coordinator

Wednesday, March 1 is the first day of Lent. I have a challenge for you. Every day of Lent, remove one item from your closet that you no longer wear or need and put it into this trash bag. At the end of forty days (really 46), donate these items to a place that can share them with someone who can really use them! As you put your item in your trash bag, please add a coin or paper monies to your UTO box and give thanks for the blessings of “enough” and that you can share with others. If you have not already started sorting out items, and found your blue box, you still have a few days before Lent begins! Happy donating — and many blessings on this project!

— Joanna Henrichs, Diocesan UTO Coordinator,

Newbigin House presents: a conversation with Sara Miles — Faith and food, San Francisco

Sara Miles was a happy atheist and an editor at Mother Jones who covered wars and revolutions in Central America. She was married to another woman and had no intention of becoming a “religious nut,” until one morning when she wandered into a San Francisco church and found herself taking communion where her life changed. That day she found her life’s mission: feeding the hungry. Sara tells her story in her book Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion. She'll be joining Dr. Scot Sherman in conversation about her life and faith feeding the hungry in San Francisco. Purchase your tickets on Eventbrite today!

When: Thursday, March 9, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Where: Century Club of California, 1355 Franklin St., San Francisco
Tickets: $20
RegistrationClick here
Contact: Claudia Wallen,

Episcopal Peace Fellowship — Creating a Culture of Peace training at St. Alban’s, Albany          

Creating a Culture of Peace (CCP) training provides a spiritually-grounded and interactive learning time for being peaceful, hopeful people in a time of fear and violence — a practical foundation in the principles, practices, and power of active nonviolence. You will gain new tools, energy, and concrete plans for taking action on issues you choose. CCP is a 15-year-old national network of peace trainings offered to Episcopal churches, seminaries, and to other faith, student, peace, and justice groups. Founder and Senior CCP Trainer, Janet Chisholm (past National EPF Chair and FOR Executive Director). Intergenerational, Ages 15+.

When: Friday, March 10, 2 p.m. to Sunday, March 12, 6 p.m.
WhereSt Alban’s, 1501 Washington Ave, Albany 
Cost: $100. Limited scholarships upon request
Registration: Creating a Culture of Peace
Contact: Deacon Kathleen Van Sickle, , 510.306.7292

“Holding the Edge” Benefit for Sojourn Chaplaincy — Celebrating 35 years!

Please mark your calendars and join Sojourn Chaplaincy at the Marsh Arts Center for this special production of “Holding the Edge.”  Elaine Magree takes the audience on a personal journey through the socio-political center of the AIDS epidemic in San Francisco through the eyes of a hospice nurse and political activist. Half of the proceeds will benefit Sojourn, so please come and enjoy an amazing performance and to support a charter organization of DioCal.

When: Friday, March 10, 8 p.m.
Where:  Marsh Arts Center, 1062 Valencia Street, San Francisco

The School for Deacons 2017 Annual Inquirer’s Day

Are you curious about Deacons? Do you feel a strong call to be of service, to advocate for justice? Interested in the School for Deacons? Join the School for Deacons and learn about the ministry and formation of the deacon, the school program, and their curriculum. The day begins with Holy Eucharist with students and faculty. A round-table discussion with the dean, faculty and staff is followed by lunch hosted by the School for Deacons.

When: Saturday March 11, 8:30 a.m. to 12 noon
WhereChurch Divinity School of the Pacific, 2451 Ridge Road, Berkeley
Cost: No fee, 510.204.0752
Deadline: March 10
Contact: Mary Hintz,

Building the Green Economy: Are you looking to hire? Be an exhibitor!

If you are an employer, contractor, entrepreneur, or trainer in the Green Economy and are seeking to hire please consider sharing these job opportunities at a Green Jobs Fair being hosted by the Interfaith Green Jobs Interfaith Coalition on Saturday, April 15 at Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church in West Oakland. The coalition is seeking to create pathways to employment for underrepresented East Bay community members focusing especially on jobs and careers in energy efficiency, renewable energy, waste management, public transit, recycling, urban agriculture, slow food, and clean tech. For more information and to sign up as an exhibitor please visit:

When: Saturday, April 15, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
WhereMount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 1203 Willow St, Oakland

Register for the 2017 Missional Voices National Gathering in Alexandria, VA

The 2017 Missional Voices National Gathering brings together church leaders, seminarians, church planters, entrepreneurs, artists, and everyday innovators to discuss innovative ministries and missional communities both within and outside of the traditional church context. Andy Doyle and Becca Stevens keynote the 2017 gathering, with additional talks by Nancy Frausto, Tim and Kirsten Baer, and Tamara Plummer. The weekend also includes panel discussions featuring theologians, diocesan missioners, and parish clergy. Missional Voices is a weekend of thinking, planning, and dreaming about the future ministry in The Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion. It is a place where dynamic incubation of new ideas is the norm — not the exception — and where people doing uncommon ministry find support and encouragement. Register today and join the conversation!

When: Friday, April 21 to Saturday, April 22
Where: Virginia Theological Seminary, 3737 Seminary Road, Alexandria, VA
Cost: $99 (includes meals); free to current seminarians

Updates from Sacred Space — East Bay

There are a few changes happening at Sacred Space East-Bay. They have a new address, so please update all future correspondence to: Sacred Space East Bay, c/o Marion Pallesen, 6764 Melody Ct., Pleasanton, CA 94588. They continue their services at the Oakland and Hayward sites. Visit their website for location, time, and contacts. They thank the Rev. John Trubina for all his dedication and hard work to Sacred Space East Bay. He has recently stepped down as director and has been ordained in the Old Catholic Church as a Priest. He is still very active in his ministry of working with the homeless and poor. Please continue to pray for Rev John and his future ministries.


22 | Marin Deanery Meeting at Redeemer | San Rafael
23 | St. Dorothy's Rest choral Evensong at Grace Cathedral | San Francisco
25 | Enneagram spirituality at The Bishop’s Ranch | Healdsburg
25 | 2017 Faith and innovation conference | Saratoga

4 | Help to save lives by packaging nutritional meals in partnership with Stop Hunger Now at St. Mary the Virgin | San Francisco
4 | Sacred end of life planning workshop at St. Timothy’s | Danville
4 | Peninsula Deanery Meeting at Good Shepherd | Belmont
4 to June 3 | Small group leaders training at All Souls | Berkeley
5 | Seekers and Saints, Women of Transformation, at Resurrection | Pleasant Hill
12 | Touch of the Irish — the spring concert supporting the San Francisco Night Ministry | San Francisco
16 | Contra Costa Deanery Meeting at Resurrection | Pleasant Hill
18 | Listen, love, and pray: a day of healing prayer with The Rev. Nigel Mumford at St. Clare’s | Pleasanton
18 | ‘These are our bodies’: talking about faith and sexuality in youth and family ministry
19 | Music at the intersection of faith and social justice at St. Cuthbert’s | Oakland
21 | Preaching symposium: Relational and scriptural foundations for preaching justice at the Bishop’s Ranch | Healdsburg
Go to full Diocesan Calendar
Clergy positions — Outside DioCal

Rector :: St. Mary’s :: Pacific Grove, CA

All postings are available on the diocesan website:
Go to Lay Employment
Go to Clergy Employment
Please address all inquiries and applications to Transition Minister Denise Obando,, unless otherwise noted.
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