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News from St. Andrew's - July 8, 2020

Dear St. Andrew's Community,

As I have had casual conversations with people in the last few days, a frequent comment involves news stories of people flagrantly disregarding the basic practice of wearing face coverings in public, even though the rate of infection is growing.   Many are incredulous that people seem proud and pleased to refuse to do the simple practice that can slow down the spread of the virus.  As I reflect on this issue, I'm reminded of the book And the Band Played On about the emergence of the AIDs epidemic in the 80s.  As I remember the story, many people did not take AIDS seriously because it was thought to be a moral failing relating to being gay or a drug user; President Reagan in particular was not supportive of directing much federal assistance to dealing with it for that reason.  But then the situation changed.  Rock Hudson, a long-time friend and fellow actor, publicly announced he had AIDs.  Suddenly, the issue became personal because someone the president knew and respected would die an early death.  The President changed course and became more of an advocate for finding a way to treat the disease.

The point is simple:  it can be tempting to disregard a threat to human life if it doesn't seem to harm people we know and care about.

From a faith perspective, that point of view is, of course, not acceptable.  Every person is created in the divine image, every person is a child of God.  Wearing a mask is a fundamental act of respecting our neighbor, whether we know them personally or not.

As we move further into summer and the pandemic, I am curious to see what might change some peoples' minds.

As for our life together at St. Andrew's, the Healthy Advisory Task force met on Tuesday to continue to refine and define what we need to be doing now and in the future.  You should soon be receiving an email survey with simple questions designed to give us an accurate sense of your perspective on the health issues.  Please complete and return!

Conversations continue about partnering with the Living Faith Center on a limited food distribution program, and the Pastor Nominating Committee continues to forge ahead.  Kirk Grier, newly retired from UCSB, is working with Michelle Hertig and Scott on a new web page.  And this Sunday, the message will focus on the claim that even though our "outer nature" may be subject to wear and tear as time goes on, our "inner nature" can be renewed again and again.  I look forward to sharing it with you.

Blessings on your week.

Steve

There is a path to resuming worship in our sanctuary...

Watch for an email in the near future with a survey concerning your thoughts about in-person gathering at St. Andrew's.  Please respond when you receive the survey.

An invitation to join a conversation on race... from the Moderator of Presbytery of Santa Barbara:

In 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. isolated himself from the civil rights movement to write what would be in his final manuscript. That year he published the book called, “Where Do We Go From Here? Chaos or Community?” When he was assassinated on April 4, 1968, riots erupted across the country. In June that same election year, Robert Kennedy was assassinated. He was an ardent supporter of the civil rights movement.

With the killing of George Floyd and the protests that followed, we once again find ourselves in a historic time for change and reflection. To help us along in the conversation and to take action, I hope you’ll join us via Live Stream on Sunday, July 12 at 5:00PM for a discussion based on the title of Dr. King’s book (see flyer below).

You will have an opportunity to ask questions via the chat room in the Live Stream.

I am excited for you to meet Rev. Dr. Wayne Hopkins from First Timothy Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles. His church community, located in Watts, felt the impact of the riots surrounding the beating of Rodney King in 1991.

I am also hopeful that this dialogue will plant a seed (or water a plant already growing) in our churches as to how we can more effectively enter into this season of change to help bring about God’s Kingdom in regards to race in our country. We’ve come a long way since 1967 when Dr. King was killed, but we still have a long way to go.

Rev. Tom Stephen
Monte Vista Presbyterian Church.

ADULT STUDY:

Uppity Women of the Bible

"Uppity Women of the Bible" presents scholarship, humor and fresh insights on some of the most colorful women from the Bible.

Uppity Women of the Bible is a four volume DVD-based series from Living the Questions featuring Hebrew Bible professor Dr. Lisa Wolfe. This lively commentary encompasses four major books focusing on women in the Hebrew Bible and Apocrypha. Each section in the volume addresses the biblical text in detail and draws connections from the world of ancient audiences to that of present-day readers. Wolfe's research is motivated by the usual inquiries of biblical scholarship, as well as the questions raised by the many church Bible study groups she has taught. Combining careful scholarship with humor and fresh insights, Dr. Wolfe presents the opportunity for lively and thoughtful discussions of Ruth, The Song of Songs, Judith and Esther. The Syllabus for the first volume, Ruth, is here.

The Adult Education Committee will begin this series on July 12, 2020. Please join us on Zoom at 11 AM on Sundays!

Topic: Adult Education Class: Uppity Women of the Bible: Ruth

Time: Jul 12, 2020 11:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84372422922?pwd=N3luRUZ3MnpVek16ZUpzd21ZL2xVQT09

Meeting ID: 843 7242 2922
Password: 076478

One tap mobile
+16699009128,,84372422922#,,,,0#,,076478# US (San Jose)

St Andrews Presbyterian Church

4575 Auhay Drive, Santa Barbara
CA 93110 United States

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