Oakland church

Archive for Lent

Power of Love in the Midst of Destruction

The prophet Isaiah, thousands of years ago, described God’s creative power – bringing forth new life in the midst of destruction, within and all around us:

Thus says the LORD, who makes a way in the sea, a path in the mighty waters,
who brings out chariot and horse, army and warrior; they lie down, they cannot rise, they are extinguished, quenched like a wick:
Do not remember the former things, or consider the things of old.
I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
The wild animals will honor me, the jackals and the ostriches; for I give water in the wilderness, rivers in the desert, to give drink to my chosen people,
the people whom I formed for myself so that they might declare my praise.
Isaiah 43:16-21 

Join us this Sunday, as we awaken to this power of love within, and all around us. 

Photo by ardito-ryan-harrisna-1194309-unsplash

Lent at Skyline Church, 2019

Skyline Community Church, United Church of Christ 
Worship, Study, and Gatherings for the Season of Lent

Come rediscover your spiritual roots during Lent where we welcome ALL of God’s people. 

Music, Prayer, Meditation, Candlelight, Silence, and Labyrinth Walking

Ash Wednesday Taize Service,  March 6, 7 – 8 pm

Ash Wednesday begins the season of Lent for many in the Christian church. The forty days begins with the imposition of ashes on the foreheads of the faithful. For many, it is deeply moving to reclaim this powerful ancient ceremony.During the service, we will listen to and join in singing Taize chants, a form of meditative chant and silence, to quiet the mind, open the heart and feed the soul… time of quiet and solitude in the presence of God. A few words sung over and over again reinforce the meditative quality of prayer.

Leaders for the Evening: Rev Laurie Manning and Music Director Benjamin Mertz

You are welcome, whoever you are and wherever you are on your life’s journey

Lenten Bible Study

Wednesdays April 3, 10, and 17 in the Friendship Room

Join Skyline friends and neighbors in reflecting on the Gospel of John, and we will make sense of being 21st century Christians with a 1st century scripture. We’ll be meeting at 7 pm in the church Friendship Room, on Wednesdays,  April 3, 10 and 17.  Learn more here.

Drama April 7 and 14

Join the children and adults during the services as we dramatize events leading up to Easter.  Acting is a wonderful way to dig a little deeper, be creative, challenge ourselves, and grow!  Contact Rev. Sheryl (510-531-8212, office@skylineucc.org) to join in!

 

Ash Wednesday Taize Service

Music, Prayer, Meditation, Candlelight, Silence, and Labyrinth Walking

Wednesday,  March 6, 7 – 8 pm

Ash Wednesday begins the season of Lent for many in the Christian church. The forty days begins with the imposition of ashes on the foreheads of the faithful. For many, it is deeply moving to reclaim this powerful ancient ceremony.

During the service, we will listen to and join in singing Taize chants, a form of meditative chant and silence, to quiet the mind, open the heart and feed the soul… time of quiet and solitude in the presence of God. A few words sung over and over again reinforce the meditative quality of prayer.

Leaders for the Evening:

Rev Laurie Manning and Music Director Benjamin Mertz

You are welcome, whoever you are and wherever you are on your life’s journey

Cultivating Balance in This Age of Unrest

Particularly now, in this age of unrest and uncertainty with the endless wave of inhumane executive orders, we can be tempted to give in to  the emotions of fear, rage, and despair.   It is so important to learn how to acknowledge all of our feelings so that we do not react, repress, or succumb to them.   It is so important to learn how to choose our response by cultivating a sense of peace within ourselves. 

We have much to learn from the great spiritual traditions of this season, especially the contemplative practices including prayer, yoga, and seated and walking meditation.  I invite you to join us for our weekly hikes, or get in touch with me about our ongoing prayer group and meditation sessions.  Also stay tuned for more Taize services coming up. 

© Kutt Niinepuu | Dreamstime Stock Photos

There are some who would dismiss these methods as passive,  escapism, and being too inwardly focused. Yet, consider the power of such leaders as Gandhi and Dr. King  who transformed society through peaceful, non violent civil resistance.  Cultivating balance is so important in this age of unrest. 

I’d like to share with you a short video to inspire you in these challenging times to cultivate mindfulness, understanding, clarity, and renewal:   http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/zen-and-the-art-of-activism_us_58a118b6e4b094a129ec59af?section=us_religion

Blessings upon your week. 

Ash Wednesday Taize Service

Fast From Injustice

CN_Skyline_2009-04-12_Easter10AM_73What if instead of fasting from hamburgers and chocolate, we took up a fast from injustice? What if instead of giving up worldly pleasures we gave up oppression? Wouldn’t we end up actually happier? What if instead of being unhappy we proclaimed freedom and liberty from what binds us? Wouldn’t we end up actually happier?

The great danger of Lent, for some of us, is that we get so caught up in observing the form of it, that we forget the powerful substance of it.

May Ash Wednesday and this season of Lent be more about substance rather than form for us; less about sackcloth and ashes and fasting and more about the transformation towards healing and health and wholeness.

Blessings, Pastor Laurie