Calendar Events

Would you like to make your Summer donation to the Interfaith Council?  It’s as easy as following this link!  Please support the work of the Council today.


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◊◊◊ The Interfaith Climate Action Network planning team will be meeting at 5:00 pm on Thursday, July 23rd at Rebecca Calahan Klein’s home at 3316 Victoria Avenue in Lafayette.  We will have a short work meeting on our upcoming programs and then at 6:00 pm we will break for a potluck dinner (please remember that vegetarian dishes will be more hospitable of those who eat Kosher or Halal meals).  

As dinner gets underway, we will ask Father Tom Bonacci to share a response to the Pope’s recent encyclical on climate change and then we will open up the conversation.  Please RSVP since there is limited space by contacting Rebecca Calahan Klein at or call or text 510.612.0547.  We will be trying to create a larger panel group on the Pope’s encyclical in the future.
Future programming dates:
  • Postponed the water event until Saturday, September 12th at 3:00 pm.  
  • Scheduled a food event Saturday, October 24th at 9:00 am hopefully at Mt. Diablo High School to see their food program.   
  • Focus in November on energy (renewables with CCA development in CCC).  Sunday, November 15th at 3:00 pm in Walnut Creek.



◊◊◊ Poverty Simulations:  If you missed the experience in Richmond there are two more opportunities.

Sunday, July 26th at 3:00 pm 
Our Saviors Lutheran Church
1036 Carol Lane, Lafayette

Sunday, August 30th at 10:00 am
Community Presbyterian Church
200 East Leland Rd., Pittsburg
If you missed the Multi-Faith ACTION Coalition’s experience then there are two more opportunities for you to help lead or experience the Poverty Simulation for yourself.  We are grateful for the SF FAITHS Foundation to be able to cover the expenses of this meaningful program.  If you have experienced it before, please email Rev. Sandhya Jha at to sign up to help lead.  If you are experiencing this for the first time, please email the Council at



◊◊◊  Learn about the Make it Fair campaign to get commercial property owners paying their fair share of California property taxes.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

11:30am to 1:30pm – lunch is included

Oakland Conference Center at California Endowment

1111  Broadway 7th floor, Oakland

(at 12th St BART station)  PLEASE RSVP!

  • Who pays property taxes in California?
  • Why does the State not have enough revenues to support vital services?
  • How could we create a more equitable system that could generate $9 billion MORE each year statewide, including $633 million for Alameda and Contra Costa Counties?

Prop 13 in 1978 set limits on property taxes paid by residential and commercial property owners. Over time, a great disparity has emerged whereby residential owners have taken on a greater percentage of the property tax burden while some commercial owners have used loopholes in the law to avoid paying their fair share. Meanwhile, residents have seen education, affordable housing, infrastructure, public safety and other critical services deteriorate. While California was known for its top notch public education in the 1970s, now it costs more than twice as much to buy a home here than the average in the rest of the country and the State ranks 46th in the nation in  per pupil spending.

A forceful coalition of labor, faith, housing, and community organizations have a strategy to address the inequities and invest in California.

Come to this workshop to develop your skills at talking about taxes and tax reform with friends and neighbors,  and learn how you can Make it Fair!

Please RSVP here:



◊◊◊  Unity of Sacred Symbols and Words with Salma Arastu, Artist, Poet.  Moderated by Rev. Will McGarvey, ED of Interfaith Council of CCC.

Friday, July 31st at noon

Commonwealth Club
555 Post St., San FranciscoFree to club members, students, public is $20.00. Special rates for ICCCC members $8.  For those wishing to attend the program at a reduced rate, the promotion code is “sacred symbols”.For moreinfo:  415.597.6700

Salma Arastu will give a visual presentation of her latest works which are an artistic endeavour to help people understand the threads of commonalities

across cultural, national and religious lines.  Her beautiful paintings reflect the interconnectedness of belief in our collective cultural memories.





In-Plain-Sight◊◊◊ Human Trafficking Workshops and showing the film “In Plain Sight.”
Sunday, August 2nd from 3:00 to 6:00 pm.
Walnut Creek United Methodist Church
1543 Sunnyvale Ave., Walnut Creek

Meet East Bay ministries addressing Human Trafficking.  Tabling begins at 3:00 pm with speakers beginning at 4:00 pm and the showing of “In Plain Sight at 5:00 pm.






◊◊◊ Lunch and Learn Series – The Franciscans: Who they are and how they live in the world today. 

Tuesday, August 25th 11:30 am to 1:00 pm.
San Damiano Retreat Center
710 Highland Dr., Danville

This is a great way for professionals, congregation members and others to gather to learn about different faith and cultural traditions. Come to San Damiano Retreat Center, grab your plate and join us in the meeting room for a meaningful presentation over lunch. Then enjoy Interfaith dialogue at your table before the Questions & Answer section with the speaker of the day.

Lunch is $15.00 and a $5.00 or more donation at the door for the Interfaith Council helps us pay for the room.  There are vegetarian options for food.  Download the flyer here.

Reservations required:  Contact Lisa Briones at 925-837-9141 or

Let us know you plan to attend by emailing


Ejaz-Naqvism◊◊◊ Dinner and Learn Series – Ejaz Naqvi

Tuesday in August at 6:30 pm
Swagat Restaurant
1901 Salvio St., Downtown Concord

This is a great way for professionals, congregation members and others to gather to learn about different faith and cultural traditions. Come to a great Indian Buffet two blocks west of Todos Santos Plaza (plenty of parking), grab your plate and join us in the meeting room for a meaningful presentation over lunch.  Then enjoy Interfaith dialogue at your table before the Questions & Answer section with the speaker of the day.   $5.00 at the door plus your food helps us pay for the room.  See this website for a conference she will be speaking at this July.

There are vegetarian options for food.  Let us know you plan to attend by emailing The next meeting we will re-present Ejaz Naqvi at the dinner hour on a at the same place.



◊◊◊ Save the Date:  Interfaith Climate Action Network program on Water.

Saturday, September 12th time and place to be announced.


◊◊◊ Annual Interfaith Peace Concert for International Day of Peace.  

Save the Date!  Sunday, September 20th beginning at 4:00 pm.
Peace Lutheran Church
3201 Camino Tassajara, Danville

Free with reception afterwards

Join us for a concert with multiple Choirs and Ensembles from around the Council and Bay Area as we come together on International Day of Peace.  Cosponsored by the Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County, the Mt. Diablo Peace Center, The Interfaith Center at the Presidio, SF and the Interfaith Peace Project, Antioch.

Attendance is free.  Free will donations to our sponsors will be available during the reception afterwards.  All are welcome.


◊◊◊  “Shrouds Have No Pockets”  The Spirituality of Philanthropy

Please join us for a Complimentary Breakfast and Seminar on Establishing a Culture of Philanthropy Rooted In The Beliefs and Traditions of the Organizations You Serve.

Tuesday, October 6th Breakfast at 8:00 am, Presentation at 9:30 am.

John Muir Medical Center, Walnut Creek
1601 Ygnacio Valley Rd
Walnut Creek, CA 94598
Ball Auditorium  Directions

Presenter:  Michael G. Crvarich
Vice President Legacy Planning
John Muir Health Foundation

This program is an invitation to recognize the gift of your own particular spiritual and faith traditions as a gateway to establishing a culture of philanthropy within the organizations you serve. Attendees will walk away with key strategies for deepening the meaning of the act of giving while aligning the core values of the organization and its members.

Formal invitation with event details and RSVP information to follow.  Co-Sponsored by: Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County



◊◊◊ Save the Date:  Interfaith Climate Action Network program on Food Security.

Saturday, October 24th time and place to be announced.

◊◊◊ Save the Date:  Interfaith Climate Action Network program on Energy Independence.

Saturday, November 15th time and place to be announced.


Volunteer Opportunities:

◊◊◊  Mt. View House Shelter has opportunities for Congregations to share meals with their homeless Clients.   (Updated dates available to serve.)

The shelter is one of only two family shelters in Contra Costa that is for menwomen and children.  Please contact Martie Steinmetz, Site Coordinator of the Mt. View House Shelter (1391 Shell Avenue, Martinez, CA 94553) at (925) 228-6920 or to help.

The Shelter has sign-ups through the winter, when the following weeks are available throughout the new year – and beyond.  Collect a group of friends from your congregation or friendship group and build an experience of a lifetime!

  • 7/27- 7/31
  • 8/3- 8/7
  • 8/10- 8/14
  • 8/17- 8/21
  • 8/24- 8/28
  • 8/31- 9/4
  • 9/14- 9/18
  • 9/21- 9/25
  • 10/5- 10/9

Please note that once these above dates have been taken, then Martie will begin scheduling for future calendar dates.  How will your faith community be a part of the solution for those at Mt. View this year?



WPE Logo+++  You can play a direct, personal role in helping to end hunger in the Contra Costa County. Think about helping with The White Pony Express!

White Pony Express is a 100% volunteer-based non-profit that redistributes approximately 18,000 lbs. of fresh, delicious, healthy food each week to those in need. We need more volunteers to get the food delivered to these neighbors!

White Pony Express (WPE) partners with food retailers with a surplus and delivers free of charge to those in need. Some of the more well-known donors are Nob Hill Foods, Whole Foods, Costco, Sprouts Farmers’ Market and The Cheesecake Factory—but there are a hundred additional donors. White Pony Express distributes throughout the County to over 30 recipient partners including Bay Area Rescue Mission, Shelter, Inc., Loaves & Fishes, Love A Child, Don Brown Shelter, and Shepard’s Gate.

WPE operates fifteen hours a day, seven days a week. Volunteers are needed for 2-4 hour shifts. Our primary need is for daytime volunteers during the hours from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Help us serve those in need – it is rewarding work! Contact: Vince Karakashian at or 925-876-0402.

image001+++  Habitat for Humanity Volunteer Opportunities:

Speakers Bureau: Are you interested in speaking about Habitat to your congregation or other faith communities? Or, do you feel shy in front of groups, but like tabling and talking to people one-on-one? Do you love to talk about Habitat, but want to brush up your knowledge or learn more about our geography or programs? Speaker’s Bureau is a great way to get involved. Please contact me for more information.

All Faiths Build Days:  … and onward into 2015, each Third Saturday of the month. Please get in touch via email or phone to request dates for you and your congregation. We discussed using a Google Document to help volunteers register, to better share who would be joining you on your build days.

Alternative ways to get involved:  Sign up to bring lunch or coffee and donuts to one of the build or service days. These engagement ideas may also be a part of our Google doc sign-up system.


cclogoheader+++  CCIH Faith Communities Service Opportunities for summer volunteers!

With summer quickly approaching, we are looking for help in the following areas:

-Camp leaders needed: Help run a one week on-site summer camp for 20-40 low-income kids. Requirement: 2 hours/day for a week (Mon-Thur).  You choose the hours and theme. This is a perfect teen project. Adult supervision will be provided. Locations: Pleasant Hill, Concord or Pittsburg

Water safety needed at Garden Park Apartments:  We have approximately 18 children under the age of 5 at Garden Park Apartments (GPA) in Pleasant Hill that we are hoping will become water safe. Are you interested in volunteering 2-3 hours/day for 1-2 weeks to teach a mommy and me class and/or water safety at GPA in Pleasant Hill? Current lifeguard, CPR and first aid certification is required.

If you would like to sign up for our eBlasts that come out twice a month, send your contact information to Rev. Will McGarvey.

If you want to add an event to this page contact Will here or sign in.


Interfaith Calendars


  • 29
    • Saints Peter and Paul – Christian

JULY 2015

  • 2
    • Asalha Puja day ** – Buddhist
  • 9
    • Martyrdom of the Bab * Baha’i (begins sundown on 8)
  • 13
    • Ulambana (Obon) ** – Buddhist
    • Lailat al Kadr * – Islam (begins sundown on 12)
  • 18-21
    • Eid al Fitr * – Islam (begins sundown on 17)
  • 23
    • Emperor Haile Selassi birthday – Rastafari
  • 24
    • Pioneer Day – Mormon Christian
  • 26
    • Tish’a B’av * – Jewish  (begins sundown on 25)



+++  The Health and Faith in Action Committee  The next meeting will be on Friday, June 12th from 12 – 1:30 pm at the Concord Pavillion.  Bring a bag lunch, drinks provided. Please rsvp to this address (


Interfaith Youth and Young Adult Leadership Initiative

We hope to have an Interfaith Day Camp or Weekend Camp for High Schoolers late this Spring or this summer.  To do so, we need 9-12th graders, Parents and Youth Leaders to get involved in the planning so we can create a camp based on the Youth Leadership’s desires and leadership.  If you are a High Schooler, Parent or Youth Leader that wants to get involved in this ministry, please contact Rev. Will McGarvey soon.  We are exploring what time would work for a gathering of teens, youth leaders and parents.

Interfaith Youth Leadership Camp –

Seeking 9-12th graders from diverse religious communities to join the Youth Council to plan and attend an Interfaith Understanding Camp.



*Interfaith Events in the Broader Bay Area Community
*ICCCC Events and those cosponsored by the Interfaith Council
That an event is listed here or on our website at doesn’t always imply sponsorship or support except where noted by color.  We view our role in the East Bay as a network of Inter-religious communities who support peace, freedom for all, and supporting those public and religious systems that work together toward the flourishing of all humanity.


Ongoing Presentations and Serial Programs: 



+++ 2015 Refinery Healing Walks

Healing Walk processionIdle No More SF Bay and citizens from front-line refinery communities invite you to attend one of a series of four walks, one each month from April through July. The second annual Connect the Dots: Refinery Corridor Healing Walks begins with a Walk from Pittsburg to Martinez (see below).

The Walks bring attention and awareness to the environmental and health impacts of the five refineries along the Northeast San Francisco Bay. They are led by Native American elders and others in prayer, with those walking behind in conversation. Prayers for the water are conducted by Native American women at the beginning and end of each walk.

More details at the Refinery Corridor Healing Walks website.

English  |  Spanish
Healing Walks fact sheet, outlining goals and history of Idle No More.


Sunday, July 19: Rodeo to Richmond
Lone Tree Point, Rodeo
Water Ceremony and registration 8:00 a.m. Walk begins at 9:30 a.m., ending at Keller Beach in Point Richmond.

CONTACT:  Pennie Opal Plant · · 510 619-8279



+++  Monthly Immigration Vigil
July 4th, 2015 from 11 AM – 12 PM
West County Detention Facility
5555 Giant Highway, Richmond

This coming Saturday, June 6th, we will have our monthly vigil at West County Detention Facility.  For 4 years we have gathered to pray and stand in solidarity with immigrant detainees, and to offer a faithful prophetic witness against a system that profits on incarcerating dear members of our communities.
Our theme will echo the national Mobilization happening Saturday at the Dilley Family Detention Center in San Antonio, Texas- which recently opened detaining refugee mothers and children.  #EndFamilyDetention –  once and for all!  Please sign the National Faith Leader letter to stop family detention by April 30th.


+++  NAMI Workshops for Mandarin Speaking Community
2nd Saturday of each month, 10:00 am -12:00 noon.
San Ramon Valley United Methodist Church
902 Danville Blvd, Alamo

National Alliance on Mental Illness:  Contra Costa contact information:

Gloria, 925-487-8288, or Susan, 925-216-9592;



2014-03-08 17.57.12+++  Women’s Circles Launch in Lafayette
2nd circle is taking a break for the summer, but participating in the May 17th Women’s Retreat at San Damiano.

3rd circle meets on the 3rd Monday of the month on June 20th at 7:00 pm 3316 Victoria Avenue in Lafayette.

Are you a curious, open-minded woman interested in meeting with, learning from and doing community service with like-minded women from diverse faith traditions?  If you are, please consider joining the Interfaith Women’s Circle of Contra Costa County.
In 2011, an amazing group of women from Temple Isaiah, the Lafayette Orinda Presbyterian Church (LOPC) and the San Ramon Islamic Center created the first women’s circle with about a dozen women.  They met monthly in each other’s homes, and decided in 2012 to launch another circle.  The second women’s circle (pictured above) was launched in August 2012, and has been meeting once a month ever since.  In addition to learning about each other’s faith traditions, and sharing in faith celebrations ranging from Shabbat Dinner to an Iftar dinner during the holy month of Ramadan to celebrating Advent and Christmas, the second circle held a retreat at Asilomar Conference Center in March 2014.  The members of the second circle have also been engaged in community service activities ranging from preparing meals for the Loaves and Fishes free lunch program, facilitating learning and dialogue about peace in the Middle East by attending “Wrestling Jerusalem” and participating in the Peace Cafe, raising funds for a breast cancer project in Palestine and emergency relief in Gaza, supporting peace building efforts in the Congo, and raising awareness about sustainable living practices.
The second women’s circle is taking a break for the summer.  2nd circle will regather in the fall.
The third women’s circle will hold its next monthly circle in December.  3rd circle meets on the 3rd Monday of the month on July 20th.
The interfaith womens’ circle members meet for two hours of conversation and learning each month.  In addition, participants have a chance to participate in an annual retreat and two community service events with members of the first and second interfaith women’s’ circles.
If you are interested in becoming a part of the third circle, please contact Rebecca Calahan Klein at or call or text 510.612.0547. Rebecca, Elby Salazar and Kaaren Rose will serve as mentors for the third interfaith women’s circle.



August 9th, Sept. 13th
Meditation: 5-6pm  Potluck Fellowship: 6-7 pm  Doors open at 4:45 pm
Oakland Peace Center
111 Fairmount Ave, Oakland

This is the building of the First Christian Church of Oakland, corner of Fairmount Ave and 29th St. Enter through the parking lot door.

OneLife is excited to launch a new offering!  Second Sundays is a Monthly Meditation Circle and Community Potluck.

We meet the 2nd Sunday of each month.  There will be a number on the door to text for late arrivals.  Chairs provided, but feel free to BYO cushion, pillow, mat, etc.  Please bring food that is easy to serve – there is no kitchen available.  (It’s okay to come for only meditation or only the potluck, or stay for BOTH!)  All are welcome. No meditation experience required.  Please contact us with questions about wheelchair accessibility.



+++  OneLife Quarterly Retreats:  Gather for a day of spiritual renewal, inspiration, and healing surrounded by the beauty of nature.
Retreats are held quarterly and meet on a Saturday from 10AM – 4PM (9:30AM arrival and registration).  Retreat dates for 2015: July 25, October 24, 2015
Holy Redeemer Center
8945 Golf Links Rd., Oakland
(At the foot of the Oakland Hills, it is 3/10ths mile west of the intersection of Hwy. 580 and 98th Ave.)

We hope you will join us…

  • Replenish your soul in the gentle power of intentional silence
  • Open to inner wisdom through a guided visioning process
  • Walk the meditation labyrinth
  • Savor the healing properties of sound and music
  • Share in sacred community

Facilitated by: Dr. Liza and the OneLife Angel Team.  Musical Inspiration: Destiny Muhammad the “Harpist from the Hood” and other guest musicians.

Tuition: Sliding scale $35 – 150 (more if you can / less if you can’t — no one turned away for lack of funds). Scholarships available.

Advance RSVP requested for planning purposes. Please e-mail us at:

Please bring your journal, a potluck item for our shared lunch (we will supply some vegetarian basics), and anything you need to be comfortable for the day. It’s fine to bring a blanket or pillows if you’d like to sit on the floor. Also, as we strive to be more “green” we are asking guests to bring your own re-usable water bottle — we will have filtered water available for you.  Dress comfortably – layers are recommended as temperatures may be variable.

Retreat Location: Holy Redeemer Center, 8945 Golf Links Rd., Oakland 94605. A hidden oasis at the foot of the Oakland Hills, it is 3/10ths mile west of the intersection of Hwy. 580 and 98th Ave. As you enter the wooded property and drive over the creek, look for the large meeting hall on your right.  This is a wheelchair accessible venue.


YMCA Diabetes Prev Prog Flyer_1.15.15+++ John Muir Health is partnering  with the YMCA to launch YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program.
This innovative year-long program, intended to prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes, teaches lifestyle changes that improve eating and increase exercise behaviors. The first sessions begin in March – offered at both  Brentwood and Walnut Creek John Muir Outpatient Centers. We are currently promoting an introductory price of $150 with a $50 completion bonus! If you know individuals who you think may benefit from the program but are not able to pay we will also work with them.  Enrollment is currently open.  Big Rewards – Small Steps YDPP Fact Sheet  Download the flyer here: YMCA Diabetes Prev Prog Flyer_1.15.15



+++  Ceasefire Night Walk Richmond

Most Fridays, 6 p.m. the Ceasefire Lifelines to Healing Community invites you to come out and help us spread the message:  WE WANT EVERYONE IN OUR COMMUNITY TO BE ALIVE & FREE.

For more information contact Rev. Donnell “Rickey” Jones: 510.331.3605.  To see the Ceasefire Night Walk (Oakland) schedule, visit

Stand In
When: Saturday, July 11, 11 a.m. to 12 noon
Where: 2086 Mountain Blvd, Oakland

East Oakland Night Walk
When: Friday, July 10, 6:30 p.m.
Where: First Mt. Sinai, 1970 86th Ave, Oakland

West Oakland Night Walk
When: Most Fridays, 6 p.m.

Richmond Night Walk
When: Most Fridays, 6 p.m.
Contact: the Rev. Donnell “Rickey” Jones, 510.331.3605



+++  June 2015 Schedule for Delta Veterans Group, Veterans Employment Committee, and Stand Down on the Delta meetings. 

Contact:  Brad A Yoder, MPA, Veterans Outreach Program Specialist
Workforce Services – Employment Development Department.

Stand Down on the Delta 2015 – Regular Monthly Planning Meeting
The next Stand Down on the Delta 2015 planning meeting will be held on:
Thursday, June 18, 2015 at 7:00 PM
American Legion Post 161
403 West 6th Street
Antioch, CA 94509
Please plan on attending if you are volunteering for Stand Down on the Delta 2015. Thank you!
  • 4545 Delta Fair Blvd, Antioch CA 94509   925-706-4831
  • 281 Pine St, Brentwood CA 94513, 925-513-4226

Homeless Veteran Standdown Standdown on the Delta 2015
Sept 11-14th 2015, Contra Costa County Fairgrounds



HOW TO BUILD AN URBAN FARM Summer Classes 2015+++  CREATING AN URBAN FARM:  CoCo San Sustainable Farm

A Project of: AgLantis (501c-3)
Farm is On Imhoff Drive, Martinez, CA

Approx. 1 Mile West of Concord Lowe
Farm is between Hwy 4 and Imhoff Drive on Central Contra Costa Sanitary District Land Across from County Quarry.  Across from 5501 Imhoff Drive

FREE Classes for Students (Parents Welcome)

2 Summer Classes per Week for Students Grades 3-5; 6-8; 9-12 Hands-on Experiences at CoCo San Sustainable Farm

Grades 3-5 Class is Monday and Wednesday 9-11 a.m. July 8 – August 17, 2015 Grades 6-8 Class is Wednesday and Friday 9-11 a.m. July 8 – August 14, 2015 Grades 9-12 Class is Tuesday and Thursday 9 a.m.-11 a.m. July 7 – August 13, 2015

(Grades 9-12 will also have an opportunity to help teach Grades 6-8 on Weds & Friday)

Every kind of science & engineering happens on a farm. Learn the fundamentals of Urban Farming with Hands-On classes on the farm. Topics include:

  • The Global Food System, Our Local Foodshed
  • Environment, Conservation, Sustainability
  • Safety 1st: Tools and Equipment
  • Soil Science, Conservation and Testing
  • Water Science, Conservation and Testing
  • Build Your Own Home Hydroponics System
  • Fundamentals of Plant Sciences
  • Growing Vegetables: Crops and Climate
  • Wildlife and Insects: Maintaining Plant Health
  • AgroEcology, Permaculture and Food Forests
  • The Built World: Construction and Engineering
  • Ethnobotany: People, Plants and Culture
  • Will include tours of Central San plant and labIf you are interested in learning more, call us or email us.  Call: (925)-788-7374
    Email: sustainablefarm@comcast.netOr fill out name, email and phone and mail this form to:  AgLantis, 62 Scenic Dr. Orinda, CA 94563  HOW TO BUILD AN URBAN FARM Summer Classes 2015



+++  Innovative summer program: books & lunch for kids! Schools-library partnership helps fight summer hunger

I’ve written a lot about summer learning loss for kids who don’t have engaging activities during vacation, but some children may also be vulnerable to
summer hunger or nutritional loss, without regular school-based meals.

Research shows that less than 20% of California children who receive a free/reduced school lunch during the year (which is based on family income), also participate in a school summer meal program.

A unique partnership between the Contra Costa County Library
and the West Contra Costa Unified School District is trying to prevent summer hunger by providing free, nutritious lunch at the San Pablo and El Sobrante libraries.

Lunch in the Library sessions include board games, arts & crafts, movies, music and more!

What:  Free nutritious lunch for kids up to 18 years. No documentation or enrollment is required. 

When:  12 p.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays until August 20.

El Sobrante Library, 4191 Appian Way, El Sobrante, 510-374-3991.

San Pablo Library, 2300 El Portal Drive, Suite D, 510-374-3998.

This program is part of a statewide collaboration between the California Library Association and the California Summer Meal Coalition. We know that libraries are a popular summer hang-out spot for families with kids, including some who struggle to put food on the table.
Sincerely, John Gioia

Supervisor, District One
Contra Costa County
+++  Upcoming Chaplaincy Institute Courses and Events
New and improved Interfaith Studies catalog

As we continue to enhance and develop our programs, our materials are updated and retooled to reflect the ever growing and changing dynamics of our offerings at ChI.  We invite you to meander through our newly designed Interfaith Studies Certificate Program Catalog which includes in-depth sections: About The Chaplaincy Institute, ChI Program Pedagogy, Interfaith Studies Core Curriculum, Ordination, Admissions, Accreditation and Affiliations, Program Leadership and more. There is an enormous amount of new information here that we feel you will find of value, regardless of your relationship with or interest in ChI and our programs.

ChI Interfaith Studies Certificate Program Catalog

Upcoming Program Application/Registration Deadlines

July 31 For Interfaith Spiritual Direction Certificate Program

September 1  For Interfaith Supervision of Spiritual Directors’ Certificate Program

September 30 For Spiritual Psychology Program (if you’re not an Interfaith Studies Student)

Upcoming Program Introductory Events

July 22 Spiritual Psychology: A Virtual Introduction

July 28 Interfaith Supervision of Spiritual Directors: A Virtual Introduction

September 19 Interfaith Ministry & Chaplaincy: An Introduction

To learn more about these events, click on their links or contact

To learn more about these events, please click on their links:

July 18 Singing Oneness: A Sacred Song Circle

July 19 Interspiritual Meditation with Ed Bastian

July 31 Interfaith Labryinth Service

August 15 Community Gathering: What is Interfaith?

September 19 ChI Fall 2015 Ordination

5240040b-b367-4dcf-b7ee-18309701eff4+++  Help support the needs of recently arrived migrant children and families.  The current need is HOUSING!

We are looking for:  Spanish-speaking families in Oakland who can provide a home for teenage youth.  People or congregations who can pledge to accompany and sponsor a youth as they settle and stabilize in the Bay Area.  Affordable Housing (short-term or long-term), rooms, or other rentals for recently arrived migrant families.  For more information, contact Ivan Medina:

Root Causes Delegation to Central America August 7-17
Consider representing your organization, congregation or network and being part of  this People of Faith Root Causes Delegation to understand the root cause of migration of children and families from Central America.



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 courseflyer-Gen2015+++  Ham Radio Course Forming Now!
Course begins on… Thursday August 6th to September 24th at 7-9 pm
The Salvation Army
3950 Clayton Road, (at West St.) Concord

The Salvation Army together with the Mt. Diablo Amateur Radio Club will be holding an 8 week course where you can upgrade your Amateur Radio License to General Class

The General Class license is your gateway to all the world-wide Amateur bands of excitement and Emergency Communications on Ham Radio…and you do NOT need to learn Morse code!

This course is to upgrade your current Technician License

Registration is required.
Class is FREE but there is a $7 materials fee and Textbook if needed about $27. Each student must have full access to a copy of the text.

License testing will also be available.
Follow up training –
Getting On The Air HF is October 8th and October 22nd.

To sign up email:  • courseflyer-Gen2015

Chronological Events



Resources to Help Houses of Worship
Prepare for Emergencies
This webinar is a collaborative effort between the Department of Homeland Security Center for Faith-based & Neighborhood Partnerships, a center of the White House Office of Faith-based & Neighborhood Partnerships and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help connect faith-based and community organizations with tools, resources, and partners to help prepare their houses of worship for all hazards, including active shooter incidents.

Date: Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Time: 11:00 am – 12:15 pm (PDT)

How to Join the Webinar:

Preparedness Resources for Houses of Worship

  • Emergency Operations Planning Resources

o   Guide for Developing High-Quality Emergency Operations Plans for Houses of Worship

o   (Recorded webinar): An Overview of the Guide for Developing High-Quality Emergency Operations Plans for Houses of Worship

o   US Department of Education Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools Technical Assistance Center

  • Active Shooter Preparedness Resources

o   Department of Homeland Security Active Shooter Preparedness Webpage

o   FBI Office of Partnerships Active Shooter Incidents Resource Page

o   FBI Active Shooter Quick Reference Guide

  • Free online independent study courses for everyone:

o   IS-907: Active Shooter: What You Can Do

o   IS-360: Preparing for Mass Casualty Incidents: A Guide for Schools, Higher Education, and Houses of Worship

o   IS-906: Workplace Security Awareness Course

o   IS-914: Surveillance Awareness: What You Can Do

o   IS-366: Planning for the needs of children in disasters

o   IS-909 – Community Preparedness: Implementing Simple Activities for Everyone

  • All hazard preparedness resources

o – a national public service advertising (PSA) campaign designed to educate and empower Americans to prepare for and respond to emergencies including natural and man-made disasters

o   National Preparedness Community Faith-based Community of Practice

o   SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline

o   Earthquake Preparedness Playbook

o   Flood Preparedness Playbook

o   Hurricane Preparedness Playbook

o   Tornado Preparedness Playbook

o   Wildfire Preparedness Playbook

o   Winter Storm Preparedness Playbook




+++  Join Christ the King and St Perpetua in Celebrating St Mary Magdalene

You have two opportunities to celebrate the apostle to the apostles feast day

  1. “St Mary Magdalene and the Divine Feminine” with Dr. Ron Olowin Professor of physics and Astronomy at Saint Mary’s College Monday July 13th: Evening Presentation, Prayer and Song 7 pm with reception to follow (St Perpetua Church 3454 Hamlin rd. Lafayette)

     2. Mass celebrating the feast day Wednesday July 22nd, 2015 at 8am at Christ the King (199

         Brandon Rd., Pleasant Hill




+++  International Gita Conference (IGC)  Bhagavad Gita in Modern TimesGita Conf_-_2015 CS6

Saturday, July 18, 2015
Sunnyvale Community Center & Temple
Sunnyvale, California

On behalf of the International Gita Conference team, , we are pleased to invite you to join us this ONCE IN LIFE TIME OPPORTUNITY to Attend and Learn Vision of Modern Success from the Experts. please see attached flyer.

The goal of the conference is to learn perennial teachings and practices of the Bhagavat Gita:

  1. To find solution to every problem of your life in the modern time.
  2. To enrich our life and the universe with eternal love, peace and abundance..
  3.  To connect with divinity within, function at higher conscious level and reach our full potential.
  4. To connect the body, mind and soul for health, happiness, prosperity and enhanced family and social relationships.

Wherever there is Righteousness and protector and practitioner of Righteousness , there will certainly be everlasting prosperity, victory, glory, sound policy and Dharma. (Gita.18.78)

Come and find solutions to your daily problems and attain abundance, everlasting happiness and peace for ALL!  More information at:

REGISTRATION and FOOD is FREE but due to limited space you must resister.





+++  Refinery Healing Walk from Pittsburg to Martinez

The second annual Connect the Dots: Refinery Corridor Healing Walks begins with a walk from Pittsburg to Martinez. The Walks bring attention and awareness to 2015 walk spanishthe environmental and health impacts of the five refineries along the Northeast San Francisco Bay.
Complete schedule of 4 walks, and flyer downloads on our website.

Sunday, July 19: Rodeo to Richmond
Lone Tree Point, Rodeo
Water Ceremony and registration 8:00 a.m. Walk begins at 9:30 a.m., ending at Keller Beach in Point Richmond.

CONTACT:  Pennie Opal Plant · · 510 619-8279



+++  Reinventing Water: A two part program on solutions for a parched state 
Tuesday, July 21, 6:30 PM
David Brower Center
2150 Allston Way, Berkeley

Part I: Anna M. Michalak, Carnegie Institution for Science, 6:30 – 7:00 PM
The drought in the American West is making people painfully aware of the food-water-energy nexus. Will this crisis finally drive fundamental change in the understanding and use of water? Come hear stories from the Central Valley and insights from academia.
Part II: Abrahm Lustgarten, Reporter, Pro Publica, 7:00 – 7:30 PM
Are water markets the problem or solution to droughts in the American West? Water technologies can drive efficiency, but will that happen without economic incentives?
Purchase Tickets here
Gaza-Not-Forgotten+++  Gaza Not Forgotten: A Jewish ritual of mourning and solidarity
July 22nd at 7:00 pm
Martin Luther King, Jr. Civic Center Park
2151 MLK Jr. Way, Berkeley
Jewish Voice for Peace, Bay Area and Rabbi Lynn Gotlieb invite Jews and allies for an evening Kaddish to mourn the loss of life of our Palestinian brothers and sisters in Gaza, one year after the Israeli bombing that left over 2000 dead.
+++  LaborFest Comedy Night in Pleasanton 
Wednesday, July 22, 7:30 – 9:30 PM
Tommy T’s Comedy and Steakhouse
5104 Hopyard Rd., PleasantonLaborFest Comedy Night
Join us for a great night of comedy with labor friendly comedians who understand labor and union activists. Enjoy their hilarious views of the world with host Danny Cruz, who is a
member of CWA 9423. Call to make reservation for guest list.   No fee, no charge with promo code “LABOR”.  Call following locations for reservation, and tell them you are for “labor” night.
For July 22, Tommy T’s Comedy and Steakhouse: (925) 227-1800
Must be 18 or older. 2 items minimum order required – 21 or older for drink order.
Door opens at 7:00 at Tommy T’s.




+++  The art of stillness with Pico Iyer, San Francisco
Hear a rare public lecture by the TED speaker and author Pico Iyer, followed by a conversation with Abbess Furyu Nancy Schroeder, presented by San Francisco Zen Center. Pico’s thought-provoking talk will explore how slowness, reflectiveness and doing nothing at all may be ever more urgent in a time of multitasking, universal harriedness and “data obesity.”
When: Friday, July 24, 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.
WhereGrace Cathedral, 1100 California Street, San Francisco
Cost: $30
Other coming cathedral events:
Candlelight labyrinth walk with harpist Destiny Muhammad
Friday, July 10, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

One-day workshop with Pico Iyer: Journey into stillness
Saturday, July 25, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., $125


soul of work+++  Pacific School of Religion Micro-Certificate in Transformative Community Building
Two workshops, one retreat listed below

  • Would you like to integrate your spirituality with your commitment to social justice?
  • Would you like to join with other spiritual people doing the work of transforming community?
  • Would you like to integrate your personal spirituality and faith with your community activism?
  • Would you like to make change within and beyond faith communities?
  • Then PSR’s new Micro-Certificate in Transformative Community Building is for you!

The Center for Spiritual and Social Transformation at Pacific School of Religion trains, supports, and inspires spiritually-rooted changemakers who are working to create a world where we all can flourish.

Micro-Certificate in Transformative Community Building:  This three-part certificate was designed to unite the sometimes disparate worlds of community activism and spirituality. Register for all three experiences at a discounted rate to earn the micro-Certificate in Transformative Community Building (not for academic credit).

Friday, July 31, 3 pm- Sunday, August 2, 3 pm: Monastic Retreat with Rev. Joellynn Monahan.
Location: Ralston White Retreat Center, Mill Valley
Credits: not for academic credit / 2.5 CEUs
Cost: $350-400
Experience a two-day immersion pilgrimage into the heart of Christian Monastic practice by adopting a shared Rule of Life for the duration of the monastic retreat. In an immersive, spiritual retreat setting and drawing upon the core Christian practice of the Daily Office (praying the hours), you will be formed by individual and shared Christian spiritual practices in a daily cycle of prayer which includes silent, spoken, sung, and embodied prayers. What makes this monastic community unique is the commitment to a diverse and inclusive gathered community as a reflection of the Body of Christ in the world.


July 21 and 23, 6:30-9:30 Howard Thurman: 
Disciplines of the Spirit
with Rev. Dr. Liza Rankow 
Location: Mudd Hall, Pacific School of Religion
General Public: $95
Current PSR Students: $80
Howard Thurman was a 20th century religious leader and thinker whose prophetic vision and quiet mentorship were instrumental to Martin Luther King Jr. and many others in the struggle for freedom and justice. Thurman’s text, Disciplines of the Spirit, explores subjects central to spiritual growth and maturity: commitment, suffering, prayer, reconciliation. Through readings, discussion, audio and video resources we will examine the relevance and practical applications of the ideas presented for each participant’s life, work, and deepening spiritual journey.

*Certificate registration covers all costs for Monastic RetreatFaith Rooted Organizing, and Howard Thurman: Disciplines of the Spirit.

Contact or see the summer sessionwebsite for details.




(from Queering Christ in Image and Text

Instructors:  Rev. Dr. Jay Johnson & Rev. Dr. Justin Tanis
Dates and Times: July 27-31, 9:00am – 1:00pm
Credits: 1.5 academic credits / 2.0 CEUs (20 contact hours)
Course Number: RARS-2001 academic credit / RARS-0001 non-credit or CEUs
Cost: $1,050 academic credit / $372 non-credit or CEUs
Description: “Who do you say that I am?” Matthew’s Jesus asked that question of his disciples (Mt 16:15). Many different answers in multiple theological approaches have emerged over the centuries since then. The question itself both expands and deepens when accompanied by visual responses which depict the particularities of Christ’s body, including gender, color, sexuality, culture and more. Artists and authors can expand our sense of connection with Christ and engage critical social and theological issues. This course combines a variety of modern images and texts in an exploration of how “queer” Christ appears outside “standard” representations and how this queerness can inspire and inform movements of liberating social change. Beyond white heterosexual maleness, who do you say Jesus is?
Required Texts: available at the GTU/Amazon online bookstore




Ashera Pole (from  Lost Goddess: The Life and Death of the Divine Feminine in the Biblical World

Instructor:  Dr. Jehon Grist
Dates and Times: July 27-31, 1:30 – 5:30pm
Credits: 1.5 academic credits / 2.0 CEUs (20 contact hours)
Berkeley Course Number: BSHS-2005 academic credit / BSHS-0005 non-credit or CEUs
Online Course Number: BSHS-8205 academic credit / BSHS-8005 non-credit or CEUs  (IN BERKELEY or ONLINE – your choice)
Cost: $1,050 academic credit / $372 non-credit or CEUs.
Lehrhaus Affiliate Discount: non-credit or CEU discount available.  Email before registering

Description: One of the most vexing problems of the monotheisms of the Western world is their emphasis on an aggressively masculine characterization of the Deity. While most of us nominally accept the Deity as genderless, we are still subject to the millennia-old stereotype: whether God the Judge, God the Warrior, or God in most any other guise, so many of us still consciously or subliminally call the Deity “He”.
In the early Biblical world, the situation was both more vague and more nuanced. Scanning through the religious lives of Egyptians, Mesopotamians, Hittites, Canaanites and even Israelites, there were a generous number of goddesses. Who were they and what can we learn about them? What were their shared and distinct traits? How did the divine feminine manifest itself in Biblical Israel from its origins to the destruction of Solomon’s Temple? And finally: what was the fate of the divine feminine and what were the consequences for Western monotheism?
Our course will explore all these questions, integrating both Near Eastern texts and archaeology to search for answers. In a collaborative environment, students will analyze the data to create their own understanding of the character of the divine feminine in Near Eastern/Biblical cultures and the process that led to its disappearance.
This course is taught face-to-face in Berkeley.  Those who are unable to come to Berkeley may attend online via webconference.
For those who opt to attend from a distance:  Technology: For those who opt to attend from a distance, this course meets at posted course meeting times using webconferencing, and you must be available in your corresponding time zone to participate in class. A webcam, high speed internet connection, and the latest version of Flash is required.
Required Texts: available at the GTU/Amazon online bookstore




+++  Make it Fair Workshop – Get your elevator speech on!
Wednesday, July 29th from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm
California Endowment
1111 Broadway, 7th floor, Oakland

East Bay Housing Organizations is supporting a training led by Community Economics on how the faith community and affordable housing residents and advocates can participate in this campaign. Sophia Lanza-Weil of Bend the Arc and other experts will be on hand to help us learn more and find our particular voice for equity and justice. Please consider participating. Come for a  MAKE IT FAIR Workshop co-sponsored by Community Economics and East Bay Housing Organizations (EBHO). This will be an interactive workshop with a particular focus on the faith community and affordable housing residents where you can experience the excitement of tax policy and reform , and get engaged in this critical campaign. For more information on the workshop, contact Rev. Sandhya Jha at or Elissa Dennis at

To get engaged in the Make it Fair campaign, please visit the website and get plugged in to activities in your region.




Broadway Music Sing-Along flyer1+++  Broadway Music Sing-Along

Sing your heart out with famous Broadway tunes!
Live piano accompaniment by Lynn Finegan 
Words projected on a large screen 
Presented by Diablo Choral Artists
Friday, July 31, 2015, 7:30 pm
Mt. Diablo Unitarian Universalist Church
55 Eckley Lane, Walnut Creek (off Walker)
Dessert & beverages provided
Tickets at the door: $10 adults, $5 children over 6




70th Anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima

Tuesday, August 4th to Thursday, August 6th,

FROM Mt. Diablo Peace & Justice Center, Walnut Creek to Livermore Labs, Livermore

Peace Center Board members Bob Hanson and Rick Sterling will lead the march from Walnut Creek to Livermore.

Leaving at 9 am from the parking lot of MDUUC at 55 Eckley Lane, the group will hike to Peace Lutheran Church in Danville where they will  spend the night.

On Wednesday the group will complete the hike, ending the day in Livermore where they will join with other protesters from around the bay area and spend that night at the Peace Camp at Del Valle Reservoir.  Total distance is approximately 25 miles.  Join us for all or any part of the march!  Thursday morning  at 8 am protest  demonstration takes place at the gates of Livermore Labs.  LET’S GET A LARGE GROUP OUT TO THIS NON-VIOLENT PROTEST!  FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:

BOB HANSON: OR (925)934-1071

RICK STERLING: OR (925) 478-8343livermore cctimes picture








+++  Aug action flier.2pp copy Aug action flier.2pp copy























+++  Jim Winkler, National Council of Churches “San Francisco East Bay:
What does the Lord require of you?”
Sunday, August 9th 12:00 Luncheon
Wesley Center
San Ramon Valley United Methodist Church
902 Danville Blvd, Alamo

Our speaker, Jim Winkler, is the President and General Secretary of the National Council of Churches. Until last summer he served as General Secretary of the United Methodist General Board of Church and Society for 14 years. He is a passionate speaker on the subject of where and how the Church and world intersect.

Winkler provides leadership in ecumenical and interfaith discussions around the world. He has traveled recently to Armenia and Burma to represent a voice of faith at times of oppression. In every setting, he advocates for mutual understanding, world peace, and justice.

Sign up to attend the luncheon and give a donation to $5 to reserve your spot. Invite your friends of other faith communities to join in this ecumenical event. Encourage them to register in advance so that we can prepare for the luncheon.

Statement of Faith of the National Council of Churches
“The National Council of Churches is a community of Christian communions, which, in response to the

gospel as revealed in the Scriptures, confess Jesus Christ, the incarnate Word of God, as Savior and Lord. These communions covenant with one another to manifest ever more fully the unity of the Church. Relying upon the transforming power of the Holy Spirit, the communions come together as the Council in common mission, serving in all creation to the glory of God.”

“A voice of Christian conscience to the nation”




Community Healing Service+++  Interfaith Community Healing Service:  Gathering to bring healing, health, harmony and wholeness into our lives.

Every 2nd Sunday, August 9th at 5:30 pm
Walnut Avenue United Methodist Church
260 Walnut Avenue Walnut Creek

Healing teas will be served at the beginning of the service.

This service is for anyone interested in a spiritual healing service featuring alternative healing techniques, meditation, arts, prayer and anointing. A labyrinth walk is available at the end of each service. As an expression of shalom, people of all faith traditions are welcome and encouraged to share their expressions of healing.




Interfaith Interconnect Presents Aug9  copy+++  Keys to Intercultural Communication Effectiveness
Sunday, August 9, 2015 7-9PM
St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church
1315 Lomitas Avenue, Livermore

In our Tri-Valley area and beyond, we all encounter people from many different cultures in everyday activities at work, school, church, and elsewhere within our communities.  Dr. Arjannikova will teach us strategies for improving communication with people from diverse backgrounds, thus promoting peace, understanding, and harmony.
The program will include formal presentation, break-out groups, discussion, and time for questions. The attached FLYER has more details.
There is no fee to attend, but we ask that you RSVP to this email to register.  You are also welcome to invite others to attend.  We hope that you can join us on August 9th!
Leadership Committee of Interfaith Interconnect

Interfaith Interconnect’s Mission Statement:  To enrich, inform, and educate ourselves and others about the great diversity of faiths and cultures in our Valley.




+++  VetCon 2015VetCon Flyer 1.2
Monday, August 17th from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm
1970 Diamond Blvd Concord

(925) 680-4526 •

VetCon is an opportunity for Veterans to gather and network with employers, educational institutions, Veterans health and benefits, and most importantly, each other.  Veterans are the greatest resource for each other the goal of VetCon is to not only help Veterans and their families’ access the benefits, resources and information they need, but to create an environment where Veterans can tell the story of the transition from military life to the career, hobby or interest they are passionate about today.
  • Attend valuable workshops and connect with employers who want to hire you!
  • “Veterans’ Choices” will be broadcasting live from VetCon!
  • “Kids Corner” on -site child care will be provided free of charge!
  • Learn about your benefits (education, disability, burial, etc.)

VetCon Flyer 1.2


+++  CCCC members save throughout the year on all trainings and webinars!

f537c048-d945-451f-8d2d-b17c1e2ac66eBuilding Bridges:  Cultural Diversity and End-Of-Life Care

August 18 in Sacramento, CA

A unique opportunity for healthcare professionals to explore cultural biases and apply what you learn to working with seriously-ill patients.

Learn to:

  • Compare and contrast the culture of health care and the culture of end-of-life care
  • Discuss the prominent cultural features of your work environment and how these relate to end-of-life care
  • Define cultural competency, cultural humility and cultural dignity in the context of health care
  • Critique your own cultural biases
CCCC Members: $159 // Non-members: $199
Register for June 18»  |  Register for August 18»



154+++  World Interfaith Harmony Picnic
August 29th from 2-4 pm
Meyer Park
38225 Glenmoor Dr. Fremont

Come join us to eat, play and talk about all the things that make our diverse community such an amazing place to live.  Meet people from our diverse communities, including: Atheist, Baha’i, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Unitarian Universalist and more.

Bring yourself, your family, chairs, an umbrella, toys for kids and food to share.  Drinks and paper products will be provided.  We look forward to seeing you and sharing in your company.  For more information contact Moina Shaiq at 510.938.0536 or



Together+++  The Health and Faith in Action Committee 
The next meeting will be on
Friday, September 11th from 12 – 1:30 pm
at a place to be announced.

We will continue discussion about the implementation of Laura’s Law in our county and the possibility of showing “Being Mortal” if we get a grant to do so.

There is legislation (SB11 and AB 546) about training probation officers and law enforcement regarding mental illness.  Please inform about other possible agenda items.  And please rsvp. Bring a bag lunch, drinks provided. Please rsvp to this address (




image 2+++  Stand Down on the Delta 2015
September 11-14, 2015
Contra Costa County Fair Grounds
1201 West 10th St., Antioch, CA

​Delta Veterans Group is now taking volunteers for Stand Down on the Delta 2015! Volunteers may register at under the “Stand Down” tab at the top of the home page.

Stand Down on the Delta is a bi-annual, four-day encampment for homeless and/or at-risk Veterans to come together and receive support from their communities. While at Stand Down, Veterans are provided with court and legal services, DMV, addiction counseling, clothing, food, shelter, hygiene services, wellness, medical ,dental, and a variety of community resources to assist them in re-integrating themselves back into the community. The primary goal of Delta Veterans Group in hosting the Stand Down on the Delta event is to treat the Veteran participants with respect and dignity, as well as honoring our female Veterans and families of the Veterans. Our Nation’s Veterans have made the ultimate sacrifices for our freedoms, which is why we strive to make Stand Down on the Delta “All about the Veteran”. Please visit for more information on how you can contribute to our Nation’s fine Men and Women Veterans of the United States Armed Forces.

Volunteers must Pre-register

Registration is from May 15, 2015 to September 1, 2015

Volunteers must pre-register to provide volunteer services at Stand Down on the Delta 2015. Volunteer positions that require contact with children will be required to submit to a criminal background investigation prior to the event. No drugs, alcohol, weapons or violence will be permitted. Volunteers MUST wear closed toed shoes. Anyone wearing open toed shoes will not be permitted into the encampment. Volunteers must be over the age of 18, or over the age of 16 with a Parent or Guardian’s permission. Volunteers under the age of 18 will not be permitted to provide services in the general public area of the encampment (check website for availability), and must be accompanied by an adult volunteer at all times. All volunteers must sign a Release and Waiver of Liability at check-in to participate in the Stand Down event. Minor volunteers must have a Parent or Guardian present at check-in.

​We look forward to seeing you at the Stand Down!​  Questions? Contact Blaire Ratcliff, Secretary, Delta Veterans Group.​   (925)819-6388



+++  Winterfaith Shelter Walk 2015
Sunday, Sept. 20th at 1:30 pm
Lake Merced, San Francisco
(meeting at Parking Circle at Intersection of Lake Merced and Sunset Blvd.)

To register, donate or obtain information, please visit:  Sponsored by the San Francisco Interfaith Council to benefit the Interfaith Winter Shelter.



Save the date mission impossible+++  Fired Up in ’15!

Friend, here at EBASE, we’re getting fired up for our fall celebration, Fired Up in ’15! Mark your calendars, because we hope you’ll join us on September 24th from 5:30pm-8:30pm.

We all have a spark within us to transform our economy, our workplaces, and our communities. We’ll be coming together, bringing our individual embers into a collective flame for justice!

  • Individual tickets will go on sale in late June online so watch for our email.
  • Sponsorships are already underway – contact if you are interested in sponsoring our event and appearing in our materials.
  • And printed invitations are going out via snail mail in July, so if you’re not already on our mailing list, send your contact info to

So don’t delay – put the evening of September 24th in your calendars right now and prepare to get Fired Up!  The EBASE Staff



OCT 3 SaveTheDate+++  Wrestling Jerusalem

Saturday OCTOBER 3 at 7PM
609 Sutter St., in Downtown San Francisco

25 people went out into the Mojave Desert a few weeks ago for five days to shoot the desert scenes of WRESTLING JERUSALEM. The weather was intense with gusty winds and strong sun and we all worked long 12 hour days. It was an amazing experience with a talented and dedicated crew that came together to support the effort.

Director Dylan Kussman lead the charge with vision and grace. Cinematographer Nicole Whitaker captured beautiful cinematic images. We can’t wait for you to see the footage! In the meantime, here are some behind the scenes images, which speak more to the poetry of our efforts than words ever could…

SAVE THE DATE CHANGE: We have RESCHEDULED the filming of the live theatre performance. It will be Saturday OCTOBER 3 at 7PM at MARINES MEMORIAL THEATRE in Downtown San Francisco. Please SAVE THE DATE, we want you to be part of the filming. You might be in the film! More details SOON.

For those of you who do not know, the script of the film is exactly the same as the stage-play. The performance is being shot in three locations: the desert, the dressing room and live on-stage. The movie will cut back and forth between these locations, opening up the themes of the piece. Our goal is to distribute the film nationally and internationally, reaching as many people as possible with the message of the work: nuance, deep listening and understanding the humanity of the “other” are all vital to the process of creating lasting peace.

Warmly,  David

ps. Please find your way to our WRESTLING JERUSALEM FaceBook page and Twitterpage. We’ll be using those portals for communication more as we build community around the project. We want you to stay in touch! OCT 3 SaveTheDate



+++  Eric Law to keynote Pneuma Conference, The Bishop’s Ranch

Holy Currencies, worship, fellowship, music and workshops covering the best practices in Christian formation for all ages, now at The Bishop’s Ranchbeginning Monday, October 12! The Pneuma (formerly Western Christian Educators) Conference features the teaching and worship gifts of Eric Law, with music leadership by Chris Studer. In addition, take advantage of a variety of Christian formation workshops for experienced and new educators; hang out, hike, sing, and pray with people who share your passion. Early registration ensures the best (or cheapest) rooms at The Bishop’s Ranch! Information and registration are available here, and scholarship assistance is available from the Diocese of California Discipleship Ministries Working Group.

When: Monday, October 12 to Thursday, October 15
WhereBishop’s Ranch, 5297 Westside Road, Healdsburg
Cost: $550 (regular), $450 (dorm-style housing), $725 (single rooms)

Contact: Julia McCray-Goldsmith,, 415.869.7826




Parliament+++  PARLIAMENT 2015 IN SALT LAKE CITY. 
October 15 – 19, 2015: those are the dates for the next Parliament of the World’s Religions, which will take place in Salt Lake City. The Parliament is the oldest, the largest, and the most inclusive gathering of people of all faith and traditions. In making the announcement of the 2015 Parliament, Imam Malik Mujahid, Chair of the Parliament Board of Trustees said, “at this juncture in human history when hate, fear and anger is rising in America and across the globe, It is important that faith communities, rise with a loving, caring relationships, even if we do not agree on some issues.” This is the first time the Parliament has met in the U.S. since the 1993 gathering in Chicago. Since then, gatherings have been held in Cape Town, Barcelona, and Melbourne.

Reclaiming the Heart of Our Humanity is the overall theme of the Parliament, highlighting three critical issues: Climate Change and Care for Creation; War, Violence, and Hate Speech; and The Widening Wealth Gap and Wasteful Consumption. Special focus will be made on Women, Indigenous Communities, and Youth.

Keynote speakers for the Parliament will include His Holiness The Dalai Lama and Karen Armstrongreligion author and founder of the Charter for Compassion. Advance Registration is available through March 31. For an overview of the conference, registration, and links for proposing sessions, exhibition space, and sponsorship information (coming soon), go to the Parliament website.

Registration is already available, and Super Saver rates are available until November 30, 2014; lower rates are also available for groups of ten or more who register together. For an overview of the conference, registration, and links for proposing sessions, exhibition space, and sponsorship information (coming soon), go to the Parliament website.  Let Will McGarvey know if you want to be a part of the ICCCC delegation attending.


Dear Friends and Colleagues registered for the Salt Lake Parliament:

We are so excited about the continuous opportunities that are unfolding as we progress towards the Parliament. We encourage you to share the information in this letter with others and encourage them to register, submit program proposals, attend the Women’s Assembly and share our enthusiasm.

  • Click here to view the initial program schedule where you can see the variety of times for workshops, when His Holiness the Dalai Lama is speaking and other special events. The program includes daily Langar- so all will enjoy the hospitality of the Sikh community and meet new people over lunch!
  • The Women’s Assembly will take place all day Thursday, October 15th, and will be filled with special opportunities for women. It is free, but you do need to register for it and arrive on October 14th so you can participate in all of it. Click here for the full information.
  • The last day for submitting program proposals is March 15th. And the Early Bird registration rate of $325 ending on March 31st will increase to $425 on April 1st. Encourage your family and friends to register now.
  • Exhibit Booths are available in good locations. This is a wonderful way to help your organization get more exposure at the Parliament. Securing a booth includes 2 registrations!
  • We are grateful to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for donating the use of the LDS Tabernacle for our Sacred Music Event on Sunday Night. It is a beautiful and historic building, very close to the Salt Palace.
  • Plan a pre-parliament event in your community or organization. It is a great way to build enthusiasm and wider reach for the Parliament. Click here for information and assistance.

There is so much more. Watch for our updates on Facebook, the Parliament website, and future e-mails!

With excitement,
The Parliament Team

Register • Submit Proposals • Exhibit • Sponsor 




+++  Mark your calendar for the 6th Annual Hike for SHELTER, Sunday, October 18th. 

Choose from 4 trail options this year from an easy 2.5 mile trail to the challenging summit trek! All hikes start at Macedo Ranch and end with a post-hike d9709badb1e74156ac317777aa017d9dcelebration and delicious lunch at Oak Hill Park in Danville. There will be fundraising prizes and inspirational speakers to leave you inspired, knowing you have made an impact on homelessness in our community. Invite your family, friends and coworkers for a day you won’t want to miss!

Registration opens at noon on August 4th! 

The Summit Trail sold out last year! Mark your calendar TODAY!




+++  Responding to Disaster: How the Faith Community Should Respond to Catastrophes, Personal and Collective
Berkeley Buddhist Temple
2121 Channing Way – Berkeley
Sunday, November 15th from 9:30 am – 11:00 am

Ameena Jandali will be the Muslim speaker on an interfaith panel discussion on how faith communities can respond to crisis and catastrophe, both personal and community-wide. A Buddhist service will precede the panel.




+++  Interfaith Quotes (from the Awakening Center and elsewhere)

Do not wait for leaders; do it alone person to person.
 – Mother Teresa


There is a soul force in the universe, which if we permit it will flow through us and produce miraculous results.
 – Mahatma Gandhi


At certain moments, always unforeseen, I become happy… I look at the strangers near as if I had known them all my life… everything fills me with affection…  It may be an hour before the mood passes, but latterly I seem to understand that I enter upon it the moment I cease to hate.
 – William Butler Yeats


Only a life lived for others is worth Living at all.
 – Albert Einstein


When you forgive, you love. And when you love, God’s light shines down upon you.
 – Jon Krakauer


In order to love others with perfect charity I must be true to them, to myself, and to God.
 – Thomas Merton


The silence that we acquire through prayer and meditation helps us find peace and true happiness in this noisy world.
 – Amma


The friendship that can cease has never been real.
 – St. Jerome


Silence is an empty space; space is the home of the awakened mind.
 – Buddha


Few are the number of those who think with their own mind and feel with their own heart.
 – Albert Einstein


Thank God for what you have, and you will always have everything you need.  If you want to find God, hang out in the space between your thoughts.
 – Alan Cohen


It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.
 – Henry David Thoreau


Accustom yourself continually to make many acts of love, for they enkindle and melt the soul.
 – Saint Teresa of Avila


The moment one gives close attention to anything, even a blade of grass, it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself.
 – Henry Miller


A friend is long sought, hardly found, and with difficulty kept.
 – St. Jerome 


A generous heart, kind speech, and compassion are the things in which renew humanity.
 – Buddha


Ego says, “once everything falls into place, I’ll feel peace.”  Spirit says, find your peace and then everything will fall into place.”
 – Marianne Williamson


Life can be found only in the present moment
 – Thich Nhat Hanh


Love is the light that dissolves all walls between Souls.
 – Paramahanan Yogananda


To give the Lord a perfect hospitality, Mary and Martha must combine.
 – St. Teresa of Avila


When you forgive, you love. And when you love, God’s light shines down upon you.
 – Jon Krakauer


Death has no power to change you, but you have the power to transform yourself.
 – Swami Rama


Our souls may lose their peace and even disturb other people’s, if we are always criticizing trivial actions – which often are not real defects at all, but we construe them wrongly through our ignorance of their motives.
 – Saint Teresa of Avila


“Learn to be still in body and mind, for where motion ceases, there begins the perception of God.”
 – Yogananda


“It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, it is because we do not dare that things are difficult.”
 – Seneca


“Each day the Master would be inundated with questions that he would reply to seriously, playfully, gently, firmly.  One disciple always sat through each session in silence.  When someone questioned her about it, she said, “I hardly hear a word he says. I am too distracted by his Silence”.
– Anthony de Mello, S.J


FEAR – False Evidence Appearing Real
 – Wayne Dyer


Spiritual life is the bouquet, the perfume, the flowering and fulfillment of a human life, not a supernatural virtue imposed on it.
 – Joseph Cambell


We become ourselves by dying to ourselves. We gain only what we give up, if we give up everything we gain everything. We cannot find ourselves within ourselves, but only in others, yet at the same time before we can go out to others we must first find ourselves.
 – Thomas Merton


Every flower is a soul blossoming in nature.
 – Gerard De Nerval


Passover and Easter are the only Jewish and Christian holidays that move in sync, like the ice skating pairs we saw during the winter Olympics.
 – Marvin Olasky


The tortoise moves about in the water. But can you guess where her thoughts are?  There on the bank, where her eggs are lying.  Do all your duties in the world, but keep your mind on God.
 – Sri Ramakrishna



If you harbor not subject-object thinking, no demons can e’re harm you.
 – Milarepa


The face is the mirror of the mind, and eyes without speaking confess the secrets of the heart.
 – St. Jerome


You will find as you look back upon your life that the moments when you have really lived, are the moments when you have done things in a spirit of love.
 – Henry Drummond


The life of the body is the soul; the life of the soul is God.
 – Saint Anthony of Padua


Brooding on sense objects causes attachment to them.  Attachment breeds craving; craving breeds anger.  Anger breeds delusion; delusion breeds loss of memory (of the Higher Self).  Loss of right memory causes decay of the discriminating faculty.  From decay of discrimination, annihilation (of spiritual life) follows.
 – Bhagavad Gita II:62-63


The greatest joy in life is service.  The greatest power in life is love.  The greatest battle in life is the battle against oneself.  The greatest enemy that man of earth shall ever know is in his own thinking.  The greatest poverty that man of earth shall ever know is impoverished thinking; and the greatest blessing man shall ever know is the blessings of spiritual riches…
 – Frater Achad


Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.
 – Francis of Assisi


There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us.  When we discover this we are less prone to hate our enemies.
 – Martin Luther King, Jr.


Praying in faith is not an inner conviction that God will act according to our desires if only we believe hard enough.  It involves believing that God will always respond to our prayers in accord with His nature, His purposes, and His promises.
 – Alvin VanderGriend


Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.
 – Francis of Assisi


I was thrown out of college for cheating on the metaphysics exam; I looked into the soul of the boy sitting next to me.
 – Woody Allen


Most people are bothered by those passages of Scripture they do not understand, but the passages that bother me are those I do understand.
 – Mark Twain 


A cowboy appeared before St. Peter at the Pearly Gates. “Have you ever done anything of particular merit?” St. Peter asked. “Well, I can think of one thing,” the cowboy offered. “On a trip to the Big Horn Mountains out in Wyoming, I came upon a gang of bikers who were threatening a young woman. I asked them to leave her alone, but they wouldn’t listen. So, I approached the largest and most tattooed biker and smacked him in the face, kicked his bike over, ripped out his nose ring, and threw it on the ground.” I yelled, “Now, back off or I’ll kick the shit out of all of you” Saint Peter was impressed, “When did this happen?” “Couple of minutes ago.”


You can never know your mind without knowing your heart.
– Swami Rama


We too easily assume that we are our real selves, and that our choices are really the ones we want to make when, in fact, our acts of free choice are largely dictated by psychological compulsions, flowing from our inordinate ideas of our own importance.  Our choices are too often dictated by our false selves.
– Thomas Merton


He (Siddhartha) abandoned the desire to escape the world of phenomena, and as he returned to himself, he found he was completely present to the world of phenomena.  One breath, one bird’s song, one leaf, one ray of sunlight—any of these might serve as his subject of meditation.  He began to see that the key to liberation lay in each breath, each step, each small pebble along the path.
– Thich Nhat Hanh


Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart.  Those who look outside, dream. Those who look inside, awaken.
 – Carl Gustav Jung


Our minds are like crows. They pick up everything that glitters, no matter how uncomfortable our nests get with all that metal in them.
 – Thomas Merton


God does not depend on the Universe; the Universe depends on God.  Mind does not depend on the body; the body depends on the mind.
 – Swami Veda


Concentrated power is silence.  Diffused power is noise…When you reach the place   of silence in mind, you have reached the place of power, the place where all is one…
 – Baird Spalding


What is it that stands higher than words? Action.  What is it that stands higher than action? Silence…
 – Francis of Assisi


“A fundamental concern for others in our individual and community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamt of”
– Nelson Mandela


“Religious knowledge is a practical kind of knowledge like driving or swimming. You can’t learn to swim or dance from reading a book. You’ve got to get into the water and learn to float.”
– Karen Armstrong


“Show me a religion that doesn’t care about compassion. Show me a religion that doesn’t care about stewardship of the environment. Show me a religion that doesn’t care about hospitality.”
– Eboo Patel


“[I]t is not possible to establish true links with God while ignoring other people. Hence it is important to intensify dialogue among the various religions, and I am thinking particularly of dialogue with Islam.”
– Pope Francis I.


Life is a beautiful song.  Open your heart and rejoice in its melody.  Once you are attuned to this song, you will find the Composer seated in the lotus of your heart.
 – Swami Rama


I stand between the years.  The Light of My Presence is flung across the year to come.  Backward, over the past year, is My Shadow thrown, hiding trouble and sorrow and disappointment.  Dwell not on the past—only on the present. I hold the year in My Hands—in trust for you. But I shall guide you one day at a time.
 – Anonymous (taken from the book, God Calling)


Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.
 – Hamilton Writht Mable


The sun, the moon, the stars, and all the lights that you can imagine in the entire external world are but fragments of that one great Light that is within you.
 – Swami Rama


Here are Christmas gift suggestions from our friend Ray:

Christmas gift suggestions:
To your enemy, forgiveness.
To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service
To all, charity
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect.
– Oren Arnold


Silence does not lie within the domain of your mind; silence lies beyond your mind.
 – Swami Rama


The truest communication with God is absolute, total silence; there is not a single word in existence that can convey this communication…
 – Bernadette Roberts


Life is not to be regarded as an uninterrupted flow of words which is finally silenced by death.  Its rhythm develops in silence, comes to the surface in moments of necessary expression, returns to deeper silence, culminates in a final declaration, then ascends quietly into the silence of Heaven which resounds with unending praise.
 –  Thomas Merton


The best way to love ourselves is to love others, yet we cannot love others unless we love ourselves since it is written, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” But if we love ourselves in the wrong way, we become incapable of loving anybody else.  And indeed when we love ourselves wrongly we hate ourselves; if we hate ourselves we cannot help hating others.
 – Thomas Mer 

There are three qualities that define a completely open mind, a mind that is experiencing freedom: spaciousness, clarity, and compassion.  By spaciousness we mean a mind that is not grasping at separateness, at the feeling that you and I are separate, that you are reading something that I have written. In spaciousness there is only the direct experience of reading. Clarity is the quality of clearly knowing what is happening right now, not being lost in thoughts about the past or future.  Compassion is the open heart meeting we experience in life with a desire to alleviate suffering. It has been said the heart is the depth of the mind and the mind is the surface of the heart.
 – Dale Borglum


It is impossible to be negative while we are giving thanks!
 – Donald Curtis


Appreciate life instead of resisting it…
 – Judy Tatelbaum


If the only prayer you say in your entire life is “Thank you,” that will suffice…
 – Meister Eckhart


As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.
 – John F. Kennedy



Canticle of Brother Sun and Sister Moon of St. Francis of Assisi:


Most High, all-powerful, all-good Lord,
All praise is Yours, all glory, all honour and all blessings.
To you alone, Most High, do they belong,
and no mortal lips are worthy to pronounce Your Name. 

Praised be You my Lord with all Your creatures,
especially Sir Brother Sun,
Who is the day through whom You give us light.
And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendour,
Of You Most High, he bears the likeness. 

Praised be You, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars,
In the heavens you have made them bright, precious and fair. 

Praised be You, my Lord, through Brothers Wind and Air,
And fair and stormy, all weather’s moods,
by which You cherish all that You have made. 

Praised be You my Lord through Sister Water,
So useful, humble, precious and pure. 

Praised be You my Lord through Brother Fire,
through whom You light the night
and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong. 

Praised be You my Lord through our Sister,
Mother Earth
who sustains and governs us,
producing varied fruits with coloured flowers and herbs.
Praise be You my Lord through those who grant pardon
for love of You and bear sickness and trial.
Blessed are those who endure in peace,
By You Most High, they will be crowned. 

Praised be You, my Lord through Sister Death,
from whom no-one living can escape.
Woe to those who die in mortal sin!
Blessed are they She finds doing Your Will.
No second death can do them harm.
Praise and bless my Lord and give Him thanks,
And serve Him with great humility.


The life of the body is the soul; the life of the soul is God.
 – Saint Anthony of Padua


Brooding on sense objects causes attachment to them.  Attachment breeds craving; craving breeds anger.  Anger breeds delusion; delusion breeds loss of memory (of the Higher Self).  Loss of right memory causes decay of the discriminating faculty.  From decay of discrimination, annihilation (of spiritual life) follows.
 – Bhagavad Gita II:62-63


The greatest joy in life is service.  The greatest power in life is love.  The greatest battle in life is the battle against oneself.  The greatest enemy that man of earth shall ever know is in his own thinking.  The greatest poverty that man of earth shall ever know is impoverished thinking; and the greatest blessing man shall ever know is the blessings of spiritual riches…
 – Frater Achad


Be the change that you wish to see in the world.
 – Mahatma Gandhi


Good friends are like stars—the darker the night the brighter they shine.
 – Anonymous


Silence is not the absence of sound, but the absence of self.
 – Anthony de Mello, S.J.


The Success of one’s life depends upon one’s ability to forget what is not relevant to the present moment.
 – Amma


The gift of love is the gift of the power and the capacity to love, and, therefore, to give love with full effect is also to receive it.  So, love can only be kept by being given away, and it can only be given perfectly when it is also received.
 – Thomas Merton


…our duty as a Party is not to our Party alone, but to the nation, and, indeed, to all mankind. Our duty is not merely the preservation of political power but the preservation of peace and freedom. So let us not be petty when our cause is so great. Let us not quarrel amongst ourselves when our Nation’s future is at stake. Let us stand together with renewed confidence in our cause—united in our heritage of the past and our hopes for the future—and determined that this land we love shall lead all mankind into new frontiers of peace and abundance.
 – John F. Kennedy


Be the change that you wish to see in the world.
 – Mahatma Gandhi


“Life on this earth is but a brief moment; utilize that moment to purify the way of the soul.”
 – Swami Rama


“Close the language door and open the love window.  The moon won’t use the door, only the window.”
 – Rumi


“If you go into solitude with a silent tongue, the silence of mute beings will share with you their rest.  But if you go into solitude with a silent heart, the silence of creation will speak louder than the tongues of men or angels.”
 – Thomas Merton


“A positive reality is put into a person who receives grace…”
 – Thomas Aquinas


We find that by opening the door to the shadow realm a little, and letting out various elements a few at a time, relating to them, finding use for them, negotiating, we can reduce being surprised by shadow sneak attacks and unexpected explosions.
– Clarissa Pinkola Estes


“I understood suddenly how thought was just an illusory thing, and how thought is responsible for, if not all, most of the suffering we experience. And then I suddenly felt that I was looking at these thoughts from another perspective, and I thought, ‘Who is it that is aware that I’m thinking?’ Suddenly, I was thrown into this expansive, amazing feeling of freedom — from myself, from my problems. I saw that I was bigger than what I do, bigger than my body, everything and everyone. I was no longer a fragment of the universe. I was the universe.”
 – Jim Carrey


You are constantly being sent signs from the universe about what path to take…
 – Sanaya Roman


We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass – grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence.  We need silence to be able to touch souls.
 – Mother Teresa of Calcutta


Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.
 – Melody Beattie


Let us more and more insist on raising funds of love, of kindness, of understanding, of peace. Money will come if we seek first the Kingdom of God – the rest will be given.
 – Mother Teresa of Calcutta


Retain evenness of mind under all circumstances.  In every situation be calmly active and actively calm.  Banish all disillusionment, all disappointments you might have found in losses and suffering.  These constraints on the power of thought and will must absolutely be done away with.  Your trials did not come to punish you, but to awaken you—to make you realize that you are a part of Spirit and that just behind the spark of your life is the Flame of Infinity; just behind the glimmer of your thoughts is the Great Light of God…
 – Paramahansa Yogananda


My life is my message.
 – Gandi


Knowing others is wisdom. Knowing yourself is enlightenment.
 – Lao Tzu


Suffering is given to you that you might open your eyes to truth.
– Anthony DeMello


Action and reaction are continuous. Everything is connected to everything else.
 – Swami Prajnanpad


Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.
 – Mother Teresa


Our Task must be to free ourselves, by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures.
 – Albert Einstein


Darkness can’t drive out darkness, only light can.
 – Martin Luther King


God has been very good to me, for I never dwell upon anything wrong which a person has done, so as to remember it afterwards. If I do remember it, I always see some other virtue in that person.
 – Saint Teresa of Avila


Those who are considered to be great know how to perform their duties selflessly for humanity.  They surrender the fruits of their actions to the Lord, whom they see in others.  When you work for yourself, you are afraid you might not get the fruits, or if you get the fruits, perhaps they will be snatched from you.  If you work for God, you will have no such fears and you will enjoy all the actions of your life.
 – Swami Rama


Prayer is nothing else than being on terms of friendship with God.
 – Saint Teresa of Avila


How can you determine whether at this moment we are sleeping, and all our thoughts are a dream: or whether we are awake, and talking to one another in the waking state…
 – Plato


To serve others means to serve the Lord. If you could see God in those whom you love and do your duties for God, you would experience harmony and peace within.  You could never hurt or treat someone badly if you could see God in that person.
– Swami Rama


The tree that is beside the running water is fresher and gives more fruit.
 – Saint Teresa of Avila


It is better to be violent if there is violence in our hearts than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence.
 – Gandhi


Swami Rama, Swami Veda, Ram Dass and Eckhart Tolle all say, to be here now, but we are all here because we are not all there.
 – Michael Smith


The root cause of all emotion is desire.
 – Swami Rama


Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.
 – Mother Theresa


Feelings like disappointment, embarrassment, irritation, resentment, anger, jealousy, and fear, instead of being bad news, are actually very clear moments that teach us where it is that we’re holding back. They teach us to perk up and lean in when we feel we’d rather collapse and back away. They show us, with terrifying clarity, exactly where we’re stuck. This very moment is the perfect teacher, and, lucky for us, it’s with us wherever we are.

– Pema Chödrön


If you really want to know who you are, you have to take off all the masks, one after the other.
 – Swami Rama


When you are patient, you take the time to immerse yourself in the joy of the moment, which is denied to those who hurry…
 – Donald Curtis


People tend to be generous when sharing their nonsense, fear, and ignorance. And while they seem quite eager to feed you their negativity, please remember that sometimes the diet we need to be on is a spiritual and emotional one. Be cautious with what you feed your mind and soul. Fuel yourself with positivity and let that fuel propel you into positive action.
 – Steve Maraboli 


It is not enough to know the way; we must travel it…
 – Alice H. Rice


Our body has this defect that, the more it is provided care and comforts, the more needs and desires it finds.
 – Saint Teresa of Avila


When I understand myself, I understand you, and out of that understanding comes love. Love is the missing factor; there is a lack of affection, of warmth in relationship; and because we lack that love, that tenderness, that generosity, that mercy in relationship, we escape into mass action, which produces further confusion, further misery. We fill our hearts with blueprints for world reform and do not look to that one resolving factor which is love.
 – Jiddu Krishnamurti


Let us always meet each other with a smile, for the smile is the beginning of love.
 – Mother Teresa


When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers
– Thich Nhat Hahn.


Ecstasy is the awakening of consciousness, the extending of awareness from the limits of the body to the limitlessness of Eternity…
 – Yogananda


The only strength a person can rely on is inner strength, and that inner strength is based on love.
 – Swami Rama


The most important teachings have their source in intuition and are beyond the powers of verbal communication.
 – Swami Rama


Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.
 – Steve Jobs


Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing dismay you;
All things pass;
God never changes…
One who has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.
 – St Teresa of Avila


I do not fear Satan half so much as I fear those who fear him.
 – Teresa of Avila


Most people are bothered by those passages of Scripture they do not understand, but the passages that bother me are those I do understand.
 – Mark Twain


You can live to be a hundred if you give up all the things that make you want to live to be a hundred.
 – Woody Allen 


What is hateful to you, do not do to your neighbour. This is the whole Torah; all the rest is commentary. Go and learn it.
 – Hillel, Talmud, Shabbath 31a


Loneliness and feelings of being unwanted is the most terrible poverty…
 – Mother Teresa


Loneliness is the root cause of many diseases. People are lonely because they are not aware of the fountain within.
 – Swami Rama


The ability to discipline oneself to delay gratification in the short term in order to enjoy greater rewards in the long term, is the indispensable prerequisite for success.
 – Brian Tracy


The most precious gift we can offer others is our presence.
 – Thich Nhat Hahn.


The greatest power in the world is the divine power of grace.
– Swami Rama


Ask and it shall be given unto you; seek and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you…
 – Jesus


We must learn to work in this world with interest, but keep relaxed and unattached.
 – Yogananda


Spirit is the life of God within us…
 – Teresa of Avila


Fearlessness is the first requisite of the spiritual life…
 – Mohandas Gandhi


Spiritual life cannot force out of anyone more than the person wishes to put into it…
 – Gayatri Devi


We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
– Teilhard de Chardin


You can create many diseases through your own mind and you can heal yourself through the same mind.
 – Swami Rama


Spirituality is not to be learned by flight from the world, by running away from things, or by turning solitary and going apart from the world.  Rather, we learn an inner solitude wherever or with whomsoever we may be.  We must learn to penetrate things and find God there…
 – Meister Eckhart


Wise beings do not want to remain a slave to fear of pain.  They permit the world to be what it is instead of being afraid of it.  They wholeheartedly participate in life, but not for the purpose of using life to avoid themselves. If life does something that causes a disturbance inside of you, instead of pulling away, let it pass through you like the wind.
 – Michael Singer


Both the optimist and the pessimist are right, but as different as light is from darkness…
– Anonymous


True progress quietly and persistently moves along without notice…
– Francis de Sales


I am realizing every day that the search for truth is vain unless it is founded upon love.  To injure a single human being is to injure those divine powers within us, and thus the harm reaches not only that one human being, but with him the whole world…
 – Mohandas Gandhi


Where there is humility and patience, there is neither anger nor vexation
– Francis of Assisi


There are two ways to lose your mind. The way of the mad, and the way of the mystic…
 – Swami Veda


The best years of your life are the ones in which you decide your problems are your own. You don’t blame them on your mother, the ecology, or the President.  You realize that you control your own destiny…
 – Albert Ellis


The root cause of all emotions is desire.
 – Swami Rama


One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light but by making the darkness conscious
 – Carl G. Jung


…If you would only switch on the light of awareness and observe yourself and everything around you throughout the day, if you would see yourself reflected in the mirror of awareness the way you see your face reflected in a looking glass, that is, accurately, clearly, exactly as it is without the slightest distortion or addition, and if you observed this reflection without any judgment or condemnation, you would experience all sorts of marvelous changes coming about in you.
 – Anthony De Mello


Patience means waiting without anxiety…
 – Francis de Sales


Harmony means absence of conflict; it means stillness and silence, peace and tranquility…
 – Ramesh Balsekar


There is no path greater than love.  There is no law higher than love.  And there is no goal beyond love, God and love are identical…
 – Meher Baba


Our highest hopes are often destroyed to prepare us for better things. The failure of the caterpillar is the birth of the butterfly; the passing of the bud is the becoming of the rose; the death or destruction of the seed is the prelude to its resurrection as wheat.  It is at night in the darkest hours, those preceding dawn, that plants grow best, that they most increase in size…
 – William G. Jordan


I have found that in the heart of disappointment there is always seated a limitless joy that can emancipate one from sorrow.
 – Swami Rama


At times I think that Jesus may be knocking from the inside, that we may let him out.
 – Pope Francis


The worst thing in your life may contain seeds of the best.  When you see crises as an opportunity, your life becomes not easy, but more satisfying
 – Joe Kogel


There is not in the world a kind of life more sweet and delightful than that of a continual walk with God.  Those only can comprehend it who practice and experience it…
 – Brother Lawrence


Gratitude is one of the great positive emotions because it creates magnetism… A magnet is that which draws things to itself; therefore, by giving heartfelt thanks for all the good we now have, through the magnetism that gratitude creates, we will start attracting more good into our daily life…
 – Elaine Hibbard


I am a nobody,
nobody is perfect,
therefore I am perfect.
And who says nothing is impossible;
I’ve been doing nothing all day.
Snowmen fall from Heaven unassembled.

 – Michael Smith


God is good but God and Chocolate is even better.
 – St. Teresa of Avila


I’m not afraid of death; I just don’t want to be there when it happens.
 – Woody Allen


The Lord is within you, seated deep beyond your mind and emotions.
 – Swami Rama


Emotions are like waves.  Watch them come and go on the vast ocean of existence…
 – Hindu proverb


If negative emotions produce negative chemical changes in the body, wouldn’t the positive emotions produce positive chemical changes?
 – Norman Cousins


Fill yourself first and then only will you be able to give to others…
 – St. Augustine


Men often become what they believe themselves to be. If I believe I cannot do something, it makes me incapable of doing it.  But when I believe I can, then I acquire the ability to do it…
 – Mohandas Gandi


Where are the gateways to peace and enlightenment?  In the spaces between words. Look closely and enter.
 – Swami Veda Bharati


Love is the law of God. You live that you may learn to love. You love that you may learn to live.
 – Mikhail Naimy


Ingratitude is the soul’s enemy… Like a hot, parching wind, it dries up the well-spring of holiness, the dew of mercy, and the streams of grace…
 – St. Bernard


The fountain of contentment must spring up in the mind, and he who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own disposition, will waste his life in fruitless efforts and multiply the grief he proposes to remove…
 – Samuel Johnson


The spiritual quest is a journey without distance. You travel from where you are right now to where you have always been. From ignorance to recognition…
– Anthony de Mello


Don’t be afraid to take a big step if one is indicated.  You can’t cross a chasm in two jumps…
– David L. George


Buddha left a road map, Jesus left a road map, Krishna left a road map.  But you still have to travel the road yourself…
– Steve Levine


Every dream has a purpose, whether it’s to warn us, inspire us, encourage us to slow down or to get moving…
– Patricia Garfield


Great dreams contain inexhaustible truths, and orient us, like runes, toward our futures… Great dreams are like wells that never run dry…
– Michael Grosso


Nothing so much convinces me of the boundlessness of the human mind as its operations in dreaming…
– William B. Clulow


Laugh when you can, apologize when you should, and let go of what you can’t change. Kiss slowly, play hard, forgive quickly, take chances, give everything and have no regrets. Life’s too short to be anything but joyful.
– Unknown


Our primary relationship is really with ourselves… Our relationships with other people constantly reflect exactly where we are in the process.
– Shakti Gawain


A relationship is like a garden.  If it is to thrive it must be watered regularly.  Special care must be given, taking into account the seasons as well as any unpredictable weather.  New seeds must be sown and weeds must be pulled…
– John Gray


“We become contemplatives when God discovers Himself in us…”
– Thomas Merton


“Do you know what one feels in meditation? The mind becomes like a continuous flow of oil—it thinks one object only, and that is God. It does not think of anything else…”
– Ramakrishna


“May you become so large as to encompass all space
with your subtle body.
May your heart strings be played by the Master
Musician of the universe.
May you radiate a golden glow in a dark room.
May you give back to Nature twice what you receive from Her.”

– Swami Veda Bharati


“I am so washed in the tide of His measureless love that I seem to be below the surface of a sea and cannot touch or see or feel anything around me except its water.”
– Catherine of Genoa


“Do not doubt the ability to remove the root cause of the disturbance inside of you.  You can look deep within yourself, to the core of your being, and decide that you don’t want the weakest part of you running your life.  You want to be free of this.  You want to talk to people because you find them interesting, not because you’re lonely.  You want to have relationships with people because you genuinely like them, not because you need for them to like you.  You want to love because you truly love, not because you need to avoid your inner problems.”
–  Michael Singer


“Light, even though it passes through pollution, is not polluted…”
– Augustine


“Love means non-hurting, non-harming, non-injuring, and non-killing, not only through actions, but through speech and thoughts also.”
– Swami Rama


“When you demand nothing… seek nothing, expect nothing, then the Supreme State will come to you uninvited and unexpected.”
– Nisargadatta Maharaj


“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.”
– Plato


“To fight the darkness of ignorance do not draw your sword, light a candle of love”
– Zarathustra

Mission Statement

We as people from a diversity of religions, spiritual traditions and sectors of society, gather to manifest our unity as we promote the spirit of community, service and cooperation through the work of the Interfaith Council.


The Council is able to sustain the Chaplaincy Program and provide these minitries only because of the generous and regular support of people like you and congregations such as yours. These ministries are carried out on your behalf, and would not be possible without your support.

Contributions toward the work of the Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County may be sent by check or money order to 1543 Sunnyvale Ave., Walnut Creek, CA 94597. Designations toward one of our programs, including the chaplaincy ministry of the Rev. Dr. Charles Tinsley, may be noted on the memo line.

The Interfaith Council is a 501(c)(3) organization, and all contributions are tax-deductible to the extent of the law.