Worship Time: Sundays 11:15 a.m.
We are an Open, Welcoming and Affirming family church believing that Christ calls everyone without prejudice or distinction to love and worship God. Whoever you are; wherever you are on the journey; whomever you call family— you are welcome in our Community of Faith!
New Community of Faith
6350 Rainbow Drive, San Jose, CA 95129
New Community of Faith is affiliated with
the American Baptist Churches, USA and the United Church of Christ.
Posted in welcome
The wonderful news of Pentecost is that when God’s Holy Spirit breaks through, we gain new understanding of our world and of one another. Doors that have been closed due to fear and prejudice are opened wide. Visions and dreams become the norm. There is connection, and where there is connection, can a celebration be far behind?
Come join us as we give thanks for the mysterious, wondrous gift of the Spirit that is for all. It is freely given, but it cannot be contained or ordered about. It refuses to be hoarded, and cannot be sold. Blessed be.
Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body will also live in hope. Psalm 16:9, Acts 2:26
Rev. Sue Ann
Come join us as we welcome a new friend and guest preacher, Rev. Nancy Smith.
The Rev. Nancy B. Smith is ordained in the American Baptist Tradition. She was Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Oakland for nearly 6 years and assisted with their transition to membership with Lakeshore Avenue Baptist Church. Rev. Smith graduated from a year long Clinical Pastoral Education training program/Internship and then spent 9 more months working as a chaplain, part time at the UC Medical Center and Benioffs Children’s Hospital in San Francisco. She is currently working part time as a fee basis chaplain at the Veteran’s Administration in the hospice and respite units.
The Rev. Andrew Kille, a longtime friend of New Community, will be preaching and leading the communion service on this coming Sunday. The sermon will be “What God has made clean, you must not call profane,” based on the story of Peter’s vision, as told in Acts 11:1-18. Where are we being called to expand our horizons and to recognize the movement of the Spirit in places and people we might least suspect? How might we live our lives as compassionate and welcoming Christians in an increasingly multi-religious world?
Rev. Kille is the Editor of BibleWorkbench, a resource that invites group members to become a part of the biblical story and to understand how it is alive in the world around them and in their own inner lives. He also currently serves as Chair of SiVIC- the Silicon Valley Interreligious Council.
Folks in the neighborhood might be interested in this gathering to be held at DeAnza College on May 1:
A2K: Access to Knowledge
A2K = a human right
On May Day, the traditional celebration day for liberation join Dr. Chrystalee Crain and DeAnza Student Trustee Vince Mendoza to learn about De Anza Student Advocacy Group’s work on OER (Open Educational Resources).
TIME: Wed. May 1, 2013, 1:30 – 3:30 pm
PLACE: Student Center Conference Room A
Sponsors: DA Green Party Club, Institute Of Community and Civic Engagement, Office of Equity, Social Justice and Multicultural Education
dowload a flyer: May Day A2K Flyer 7
In John 20:26, Jesus instructs Thomas to not doubt, but believe. As with many of us, such faith was difficult for Thomas. He wanted proof – he needed to touch the actual wounds. Only then could he surrender to the good news of the risen Christ. Jesus replied, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.”
Coming to believe can certainly seem a strange journey, set by an unseen compass. Often, we are tempted to believe that we are getting nowhere, and we are uncomfortable with that. We yearn to be rooted in the tangible. We want those things that we can see. Yet, in this passage Jesus celebrates those who do not need to touch and see, but who are willing to let their hearts be moved by that which may not be readily apparent. That is indeed faith – the willingness to believe even when belief does not make sense. That is also the beauty of the Holy Spirit. It often defies logic, and it can never be packaged, labeled, and tracked. It never goes on sale. It is pure gift that can only be received.
God’s love knows no boundaries so let us continue our journeys together. Let us practice the belief in resurrection. Such daring belief can truly take us to the “heart of the matter.” There, we will find God.
Rev. Sue Ann
In John 20:16, Mary Magdalene does not recognize Jesus until he calls her name. This is true for most of us. In our distractions, busyness, and concerns, we often do not recognize Christ among us, partly because we simply forget to look and listen. Easter is a beautiful reminder that life, not death, is eternal and that Christ is always reaching out to us, inviting us to take part in God’s wondrous love. Easter helps us to pay attention.
Resurrection always happens and Jesus is here. Blessed be. Come spend Easter morning with us. Worship will begin at 11:15 and there will be a potluck afterwards. You would be most welcomed. Your name is being called!
Rev. Sue Ann
A colleague sent this beautiful poem this morning. In gratitude, I share it with you.
Jesus is here, and he wants to resurrect somebody!
I called through your door,
“The mystics are gathering
in the street. Come out!”
“Leave me alone.
“I don’t care if you’re dead!
Jesus is here, and he wants
to resurrect somebody!”
In a recent devotion, Laurence Freeman, Director of the World Community of Christian Meditation, reminded me that we all have at least one mantra in our mental “tapes.” However, if we have not consciously made our mantra a prayer, we are probably just recycling old fears and cravings. This recycling (the roller coaster as Freeman calls it) increases anxiety and an ongoing sense of inadequacy. Here lies the very unstable foundation of poor choices. This is not prayer. Freeman tells us there is a different, deeper way of being; that “all prayer that is is not an indulgence of the roller coaster of fortune is the prayer of the heart.” Our heart (and, no, I am not talking about the pump) is God’s realm: a sacred well spring where we can return, time and time again. This is where we find love.
May you be able to drink deeply of sacred stillness today. Let us remember that our mantras, our prayers, can bring peace: to ourselves, our families, our world. Where else can peace start but with us? Without this balance the roller coaster, and crucifixion, will have no end. It is almost Palm Sunday. Together, let us follow Jesus into Jerusalem. Do not worry. The journey does not stop there.
Rev. Sue Ann
But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; the peace loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness.
(James 3:17-18 NIV).
Our journey to Easter must always include a journey to the cross, and to the acceptance that all humans have their struggles and their sufferings. The good news is that we are never left dangling there in the midst of such misery. We can be transformed. We can transcend these physical limits because God is greater than our egos and our fears, and God is greater than death. What new thing is God yearning to do in your life? What life is God calling you to accept and to overcome? The answer just might surprise you. In fact, you can count on it! Come journey with us as we move into the frontier of our ” larger than life” life. We are trying to learn to pack as little as possible, because love is the wondrous souvenir.
Rev. Sue Ann
Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of all who fall asleep. —
1 Corinthians 15:20
St. Paul seldom leaves the message at the level of “believe this fact about Jesus.” He always moves it to “this is what it says about you!” or “this is what it says about history!” Until we are pulled into the equation, we find it hard to invest ourselves in a distant religious belief.
Paul normally speaks of “Christ”—which includes all of creation—for he never knew Jesus “in the flesh” but only as the eternal Body of Christ. Christ Crucified is all of the hidden, private, tragic pain of history made public and given over to God. Christ Resurrected is all suffering received, loved, and transformed by an All-Caring God. How else could we have any kind of cosmic hope? How else would we not die of sadness for what humanity has done to itself and to one another?
The cross is the standing statement of what we do to one another and to ourselves. The resurrection is the standing statement of what God does to us in return.
~ Richard Rohr, Easter 2012
“Careful! I’ve put a huge stone on the road to Mount Zion, a stone you can’t get around. But the stone is me! If you’re looking for me, you’ll find me on the way, not in the way.” – Eugene Peterson, Romans 9:33, The Message.
Perhaps the greatest challenges of Lent are not the obstacles, but rather learning to understand that the obstacles help make us who we are. Maybe the call is to give them another name. Love. What else are we looking for?
Come join us on the journey as we try to quit trying to outwit the stone. Maybe when we give up that futile task, we really can start to see God. In one another. In ourselves. In this world.
Rev. Sue Ann
The Spring Cleaning Lent e-Calendar is now available for free from the UCC. It offers a thought, fact, or suggested spiritual discipline for each day during Lent.
Example: Sunday, February 17
Sundays are actually “in” Lent but not “of” Lent. Sundays aren’t counted in the 40 days because Sunday is always a “little Easter.” Try shouting for joy somewhere, sometime today because it’s a “little Easter.
May this Lenten season be one of reflection and revelation.
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