Craig’s Corner 2020 August

What does giving mean to you? Giving is a central tenet of our faith.  Not because “the church needs money” but because giving is part of our faith and trust in God.  More than the amount we give (re: The Widow’s Mite), it’s really about our heart for giving.  As Paul wrote to the church in his letter to Corinth, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver (2 Cor 9:7).”  We’re going to explore that during the month of August as we challenge ourselves what it means to give.   I hope we truly will embrace the challenge, not only in our personal giving to BMUC but more importantly to our heart for giving and letting go of the fear of not having enough.  Back in … [Read more...]

Online Giving Now Available!

BMUC has partnered with Tithe.ly to bring you online giving! We are excited about this new opportunity for our friends and church family. Now, you can give conveniently from your phone or online from anywhere at any time. We are working on continually improving your experience with BMUC and hope this will be a big addition to the "plus" column. We have two new ways to give: On your mobile device (phone, iPad, etc.) or online from your computer (laptop or desktop). To access giving from your mobile device: Download the Tithe.ly App from the App Store (iPhone) or Google Play Store (Android). Once you've downloaded the app, search for Berkeley Methodist United Church and just follow the prompts. If this is your first time giving with Tithe.ly you will be prompted to … [Read more...]

Join the Discussion Against Racism – Mon 7/20 and Tues 7/21

We are on a journey together. Most of us have been deeply affected by the move toward racial justice that has swept our nation. Our church in particular, having its roots in the Japanese-American community, understands better than most how racism can rear its ugly, unjust head. While we are encouraged to do something about it, at the same time we are challenged to look within and see the ways we might be perpetuating systemic racism. If you're interested in joining us on this journey toward self-discovery, we invite you to join us for a free event with Ibram X. Kendi, author of How to Be An Antiracist. Sponsored by the Prince George's County Memorial Library System, this will be broadcast on multiple social media outlets on Monday, July 20 @4pm. It says 7pm on the website, … [Read more...]

Bay District Virtual Choir Project Begins Wednesday 7/22

Do you love to sing? If you answered "yes" then the Bay District Virtual Choir Project might be perfect for you. You've probably seen many of those virtual choirs online like the Bay Area Blessing. We're hoping to do something similar and want your participation. You don't have to be a professional singer, just someone who loves to sing and wants to lift up glory to God. Bay Area Blessing screenshot with voices from multiple churches Our Bay District is hosting this brand new virtual choir to offer hope through the gift of music. We plan to sing together the song "Rise Up" by Andra Day. Right now, a team of artists from our churches are laying down tracks to help you out and our own Naomi Sanchez will be the Musical Director. Along with Pastor Emily Lin and our own Deacon … [Read more...]

Is It Time for a New BMUC Cookbook?

Take the survey here! Who doesn't love a good church potluck? I don't know about you, but personally the best recipes aren't the ones from fancy restaurants with professional sous chefs who have years of training. The most yummy recipes always seem to come from the potluck table. And our church is one of the best at doing potluck! Have you seen some of the spreads we have had? Potluck! From when Bishop Carcao came to visit It's been a long time since we've done a cookbook and during this pandemic it might be the perfect time to start another. Have you been cooking something new and delicious during your own shelter-in-place? Are you pulling out old favorites and making adjustments? When we finally come back I can't wait to try all the wonderful food you've all been … [Read more...]

Memorial Candles and Communion

3rd Sundays: We have resumed monthly Memorials for our loved ones (online, with slideshow) and have started Virtual Communion. To add a loved one to the Memorial list, please send name and/or photo to jill@bmuc.org … [Read more...]

Craig’s Corner 2020 July

Online giving is coming… FINALLY!  I am so happy to announce that online giving is coming to BMUC.  In our digital age it makes sense for us to have more and more digital options and this is one of them.  People are familiar and comfortable with using their phones and other mobile devices for everyday transactions, it only made sense for us to go in that direction, too.  Especially with the transition to online worship.  To be able to give online is a much-needed step in the right direction.   But we didn’t want to go with just any online provider.  We wanted one that was safe, trusted, used by many, with good testimonials and a good reputation.  We wanted a provider that would give us a positive online experience and one that offered options … [Read more...]

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...]

No In-Person Worship Until at Least June 30

Bishop Carcano announced no in-person worship until at LEAST June 30 Bishop Carcano, the episcopal leader of our California-Nevada conference, announced on Thursday 5/28 there would be no in-person worship until at least June 30. The Conference Cabinet and staff have been working extensively on protocols for re-opening and hope to use this time to further refine, study, test, and train pastors and lay leaders on how to implement them safely. You can read the Bishop's full statement here. Bishop Carcano leading our Communion liturgy and serving with us at BMUC in 2019 As you know, the state has authorized worship spaces to re-open under very strict guidelines designed to protect the populace at large. While some are recommendations, considering the demographics of our … [Read more...]

Should We Have A Church Retreat in 2021?

Goodbye 2020. Hello 2021? Our Council of Ministries (the church leadership team) decided in an abundance of caution to cancel the 2020 retreat. The amount of planning needed to host such an event along with the cost were the deciding factors leading to this decision. Safety is one of our primary concerns and the council thought this was the best way to go. However, we want your input for a possible 2021 retreat! For the past seven years, we've had the retreat on the fourth weekend in September, but is that the ideal time for us? It always meant skipping Sunday worship in our building, and while we would still have meaningful worship at the retreat, those who couldn't come were not able to join us. It also meant closing our doors on the one day visitors expect the church to … [Read more...]