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Lent 2017 Carbon Fast

Consider participating in our Lenten Carbon Fast

For Christians, Lent is the time to remember the 40 days that Jesus spent in the wilderness, facing challenge and temptation and preparing for his ministry of proclaiming God’s reign.  And so during Lent, we, too, reflect on God’s purpose for our lives.  Fasts or “giving something up” have long been practiced during Lent.  Lenten fasts are intended to help people examine whether their lives reflect the love of God revealed in Christ.  A “carbon fast” serves this same purpose, and at the same time, reduces our actions that damage God’s Creation.  During Lent, we’ll offer daily practices that help people take small steps for a more sustainable world, and by doing so, rediscover a different relationship with God, with Creation and with one another.

Click here if you missed a daily practice

We Support the Standing Rock Sioux

The Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) is a planned 1,172-mile oil pipeline, with an expected capacity of 500,000 barrels of oil per day. The pipeline would originate in the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota and terminate in Pakota, Illinois. Since April, 2016 a growing popular movement lead by indigenous people has formed at the site of pipeline construction. As of mid-September, thousands of native and non native protestors have demonstrated support at the Sacred Stone Camp, site of the protest camp, and an unprecedented 180 tribal nations have sent letters of solidarity. These camps are being monitored by the National Guard, and private security companies have attacked some protestors with dogs, among whom number women and children.

On Sunday, November 13, we commissioned church members Peter Anderson and Christina Van der Plas who traveled to Sacred Stone Camp and delivered support and affirmation.  They brought with them a 12 foot diameter tepee made by Nomadics Tipi Makers in Bend, Oregon in authentic Sioux fashion, designed to manage bitter cold, snow and wind. Peter and Christina will share it with others while there, then it will be given to the tribe. (If you would like to share in its cost, you may still do so by writing a check to FPCSA with “Standing Rock” notation in the memo line and mailing to the church office at 72 Kensington Rd, San Anselmo, CA 94960.)

To learn more about our stake as Presbyterians in this issue and an Action Guide, please visit The Office of Public Witness blog of the Presbyterian Church USA. Additional links may be found here and here.

Photo credit: Thane Maxwell

Sunday Seminars in December and January

Our Sunday Seminars meet at 11:30 in the Fireside Room following coffee hour, Sunday mornings after worship.

December 1 – The Star of Bethlehem in Ancient Art and the New Testament
SFTS Associate Professor of New Testament Annette Weissenrieder explores the symbol of the star of Bethlehem and its political significance.

December 8 – A Solar Farm for Marin
Kiki LaPorta, president of Sustainable Marin, and David Haskell, Sierra Club member and staunch zero-waste proponent, describe efforts to install an array of solar panels, a “solar farm,” in Novato.

December 15 – World Human Rights Day: Preventing Torture
To observe Human Rights Day there will be a video and discussion on the
practice of torture of prisoners in Guantanamo Bay and on the prolonged isolation
of prisoners in US prisons.

December 22-29 No Sunday Seminar (Christmas break)

January 5 Diana Bell and Loring Conant on Israel/Palestine
Loring Conant and Associate Pastor Diana Bell discuss their recent trips to Israel/Palestine.

January 12 – Schools Rule Marin: A Move Toward Funding Equity
Dr. Mary Jane Burke, the Marin County Superintendent of Schools, describes a new effort to address the inequality in funding among the 19 different school districts in Marin.

January 19 – Bill Taylor on Arete West
For 35 years, Bill Taylor has led a handful of Marin high school students on a life-changing trip to some of the most important historic sites in Western Civilization. Taylor, a former Presbyterian minister and “legendary Drake High track coach,” has written a book about the experience, with many insights about the human spirit.

January 26 – Diana Bell: Keep Hope Alive
Associate Pastor Diana Bell presents a more in-depth look at her experiences in Israel/Palestine with the Keep Hope Alive Project.

Friends of Sabeel Honors Walt Davis and First Pres

The NorCal Chapter of Friends of Sabeel will be holding a Gala and Fundraiser in Oakland on Saturday, October 13th.

The program includes a presentation of the Desmond Tutu Award for Activism on Behalf of a Just Peace in Palestine. Our very own Walt Davis and First Presbyterian Church are among the honorees.

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Support for Proposition 34

At its last meeting Session approved the Church and Society Committee’s request to support Proposition 34 on the November California ballot. This proposition replaces death as the maximum penalty for murder with imprisonment in state prison for life without possibility of parole. Our congregation will now be listed publicly as supporting this measure.

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Reflections on REST

On Friday, December 23rd, we welcomed 30 or so men to share a meal with us and sleep in Duncan Hall as a part of our participation in the Marin County-wide REST program (Rotating Emergency Winter Shelter). As is our tradition, the Closely Knit Group graciously distributed hand-knit hats, scarves, and fingerless mittens.  Read more →

REST Featured in Marin IJ

First Presbyterian Church of San Anselmo is one of  many Marin County churches that participate in the Rotating Emergency Shelter Team (REST) program. This article appeared on the day after our first night. The full article is reprinted here.

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Marin IJ Recognizes a Job Well Done!

The following editorial, reprinted in full, from the Marin Independent Journal, (11/14/11) is a very public commendation of (our very own!) Sharon Jackson’s dedicated service to the citizens of Marin and her role in helping to restore civility to the debate over the future of Marin General Hospital.

 Jackson Brought Civility Back to MGH Debates Editorial ©Marin Independent Journal 11/14/2011

WHEN SHE STEPPED down from the Marin Healthcare District board recently, Sharon Jackson could take pride in her hard work, her courage and her vision. Read more →

FPCSA’s On-Land Synchronized Swimming Team

“This isn’t the way I remember church!” said the announcer at this year’s County Fair Day Parade. Thank you, Joy Snyder, for all the hard work and leadership putting together our On-land Synchronized Swimming Team. Thanks also to the swimmers, sign carriers, bubble blowers, and our fans. We had fun! You can see the video here.

First Pres is Now a Pick-Up Site for Full Belly Farms veggie boxes

As of October 6th, friends and neighbors of First Pres can pick up their weekly or bi-weekly box of delicious, locally grown fruits and vegetables through a new relationship with Full Belly Farms. Thanks to the dedication of Nick Morris, seminary student and neighborhood coordinator, we have exceeded the 30-box minimum required to be a drop-off site. Full Belly Farm is a 300-acre certified organic farm located in the beautiful Capay Valley of Northern California, an hour northwest of Sacramento. Full Belly has been farmed using organic practices since 1985 and is certified by California Certified Organic Farmers. For more information about CSA (community sponsored agriculture) or to sign up for your own veggie box, contact Nick Morris at fullybellyveggies@gmail.com.