Craig’s Corner 2020 June

When are we coming back to worship? People are starting to wonder about when we will open the doors to the church building and welcome people in person once again.  The short answer is…probably not for a long time.   We all WANT to come and worship live and in person.  We want to hug and shake hands with friends and family.  We want to welcome new people into our church family.  But sometimes our needs outweigh our wants.  In this case, the need to love our neighbor by NOT meeting in person, the need to love our church family by NOT gathering together, the need to NOT be a viral hotspot outweighs our wants.  By a lot. I know we will come back to worship live and in person one day.   But it won’t be soon.  When we do, there will be … [Read more...]

Craig’s Corner – May 2020

We can get through this together. It’s been a tough six weeks since we were asked to “shelter in place.” Thousands have died.  Families are grieving.  To make matters worse, we can’t even congregate to share our grief.  The economy is in free fall. Millions of people have lost their jobs or been furloughed.  Some who have kept their jobs were asked to take a pay cut.  And for the rest of us lucky enough not to be in those categories have been worn down by the anxiety, stress, and adjustments to a new way of life. But we are fortunate in so many ways.   It’s just not easy to see when you’re in the midst of it all.  But most of us are healthy.  We have enough food.  Either someone is helping to take care of our needs or we are able to go out and get essentials … [Read more...]

Please let us know your email address to receive the Homevisitor

ATTENTION! INFO NEEDED!   Due to the current shelter in place orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic resulting in a lack of volunteers, it has become more difficult to produce and distribute the postal version of our Homevisitor newsletter. Given these circumstances, we intend to primarily communicate by email and social media, and only mail the newsletter to folks without email.  If you are not receiving the Homevisitor by email, we probably do not have your email address. Please take a moment now to send us your email at bmuchurch@gmail.com . We will add you to our Homevisitor email email list. ( 1 Homevisitor email per month and memorial announcements.) If you like, we can also add you to our Yahoo group. Rev. Craig sends 1 update and prayer concerns email per … [Read more...]

Craig’s Corner 2020 April

What is Easter without an Easter Egg Hunt? Still the most significant day in the Christian calendar.   As I write this, we are in the midst of the coronavirus crisis and “sheltering in place” for the time being.  While I am confident we will emerge from this time in greater need of God than ever before and stronger as a church community for having endured this, it still leaves us for the time being feeling helpless, anxiety-filled, and uncertain.   Already, our church council voted to cancel the Bazaar and the Fall Church Retreat.  With so much time, effort, and planning that needs to go into both of those events, it just didn’t seem possible to do either of those justice or to have people commit to the event with so much going on in their own lives.  We … [Read more...]

Holy Week at BMUC

Due to the novel corona virus, events are to be determined. We will send you updates as they become available PALM SUNDAY, April 5, 2020 10:30 GOOD FRIDAY Friday, April 10, 2020 7pm by Men's Group. Please carpool for those who don't drive at night. EASTER Sunday, April 12, 2020 8:30-10am EASTER BREAKFAST – Come start your Easter with a yummy breakfast and fellowship, and help support the Youth and Church Retreat Funds with optional freewill donation. FLOWERING OF THE CROSS:  Bring a flower or several to remind you of loved ones, and help to "flower" our cross. 10:30 a.m. WORSHIP & Young People's Message,  Easter Egg Hunt for the kids EASTER REFRESHMENTS There is no assigned crew for Easter refreshments, so we request for people to bring some kind of finger food to share, if … [Read more...]

LIVE!

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Craig’s Corner 2020 March

Parents – this Craig’s Corner is not for you! Please pass this to your child as you read this.  Don’t read past this line.  This message is for your kids, your grandkids, your nieces and your nephews.   Okay, now that I’ve got you alone, hello!  If we haven’t talked in person, I’m the pastor of your church, Rev. Craig and I want you to know that YOU are important.  Yes, you.  The person reading this article.  It is my hope and dream to make Berkeley Methodist United Church into YOUR church.  Not your parent’s church.  Not your grandparent’s church.  But YOUR church.  I want it to be a place you will have fond memories of far into your adult years.  I hope one day as you reflect on your faith, you’ll look back and say, “I’m … [Read more...]

Craig’s Corner 2020 February

Why the history of our church is so important… Even though today our church serves people of all ethnicities, we definitely have our origins in the Japanese-American community.  Formed during a time of prejudice and hatred toward “the other” there were many laws out there designed specifically with Asian immigrants in mind.  The California Alien Land Laws of 1913 and 1920 were written to discourage immigrants from Asia and primarily Japan while simultaneously making life purposefully more difficult for those already living here.  It was even upheld by the Supreme Court and wasn’t invalidated until 1952 in the case of Sei Fujii v. California.  The environment for people of Japanese descent was hostile to say the least.   When the United Methodist Church (then … [Read more...]

Craig’s Corner 2020 January

My hopes and dreams for 2020… This is the month of new beginnings!  It is also the month which we celebrate that lauded humanitarian, visionary, and civil rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  So in that spirit, I wanted to share with you my hopes and dreams for our church in the year 2020.   Increase in outreach – The mission of every church is to make disciples for Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.  And our church vision which we crafted together of “Transforming Lives Through Christ’s Love” is part of that mission.  To do that, we need to reach out into the community more often and in new and different ways.  It will mean embracing our community and its people with love and kindness, celebrating their differences and realizing … [Read more...]

Celebrating Christmas in a Warming Planet

Pastor Craig’s sermon on November 17, generated a specific response from me. The result is this article I am offering to encourage us all to prepare for the Christmas season in ways that are mindful of how we can all do our part to lessen our ecological/carbon footprints during the Christmas season. We all associate the celebration with a lot of things and activities. The idea is not to totally deprive ourselves of their enjoyment but to alter the way we use them so we can all celebrate Christmas while at the same time remaining faithful to our God-given mandate to be stewards of Earth, our common home. Here are some practical suggestions collated from my own practice and observations and with the help of various online sustainability sources. Please feel free to add your own. … [Read more...]