This Week on the Peak

This Week on the Peak – Wednesday, June 12, 2019
This Week on the Peak
Mission Peak UU – Fremont, CA
The Home of Liberal Religion in the Tri-Cities and Beyond!
June 12, 2019

Dear Ones,

As I prepare to retire on June 30, I look to your service (past and/or future) with tremendous gratitude.  I hope to see some of you in Spokane. 

With the hiring soon of my replacement, there will be a re-configuring of Primary Contacts. To find out which staff to contact for support, please visit after July 1. 
I have been thinking about what we offer or what we might offer and I am reminded of a few transformation stories that I offer to you:

A colleague of mine was divorced over fifteen years ago and around the same time she experienced surgery and then treatment for breast cancer. For years she had no interest in a romantic relationship. And then she recounts how one day she was in a nursery near her seminary.  She was walking up and down the aisles when a younger man who worked there said to her, “You think that people don’t see you, but I see you.” With this truth spoken, she woke up.  
One of my favorite wisdom tales is of the monastery that has fallen on hard times. A rabbi comes to have lunch with the religious leader of the monastery who shares his troubles with the rabbi over lunch and asks for advice. The rabbi doesn’t have any advice, but he does have a juicy piece of information and he shares it. “The Messiah dwells among you, ” he says. Well, the monk immediately shares this with the other monks and suddenly the place is transformed.   Not knowing who the Messiah is they all begin treating one another with the utmost care and compassion, so much so that they even begin seeing a little of the messiah in themselves as well. Of course, the monastery begins to flourish.
A few of my colleagues have written about an article that appeared in the Boston Globe in 2005. It seems that there are snow monkeys in Japan who make regular visits to a hot springs. The story is that the first visitor to the springs was a female who was bold enough in 1963 to retrieve some soybeans. Eventually the others followed and it is still their custom.
Another tale comes from a collection of tales by Margaret Silf.  Hard times had come to the Comanche people. The land and the people were dying. There was no rain. No one knew how to end the suffering. The elders went to the mountaintop to seek wisdom from the Great Spirit.  The Great Spirit spoke, “For many generations, the people have taken from the earth whatever they needed and wanted, but they have given nothing back to the earth. Now the earth is in distress, and the people must make a sacrifice. They must bring to the fire of sacrifice their most treasured possessions. The ashes of sacrifice must be scattered to the four winds. When this is done, the rains will come and the earth will live again.” One young girl, She-Who-Sits-Alone, was weak from hunger. She listened as member after member of the tribe explained how they knew that the Great Spirit couldn’t possibly want their most prized possessions.  That night, she went to the mountaintop and offered her beloved doll, given to her by her now deceased parents. The rains came. She-Who-Sits-Alone became known as One-Who-Loved-Her-People.
This last story is about the pilgrim, saddened by all the suffering in the world, who searches for just the right church. Finally, he comes across a little church that promises solutions to any problem. He goes in and happily places his order. He wants to end war and poverty and that is just for starters. His list grows and grows.   The minister goes into her office and comes back with an envelope. “How can all the solutions fit in an envelope?” he asks. “Oh,” the minister answers, “we just provide the seeds.”
Thank you for all you do to plant and nurture the way of transformation.
In faith,

This Sunday’s Service:

It’s a Man’s World, or is it?   
The hegemony of men in our society has been in a state of disruption for over a hundred years and in decline for fifty years, notwithstanding the rear guard action of many. As the stereotypical role of men falls apart, what will take its place. Father’s Day is appropriate to speculate on that new paradigm using the tool of Hegelian Dialectics. Will there even be a ‘Man’s Role’ in the future or will there be a completely new concept of division of labor or none at all? 
Leading the service will be Mark Rahman and assisting will be Worship Associate Rev. Barbara F. Meyers. Peak Rocks will provide our music.    
Rev. Jo at General Assembly

Rev Jo will be at General Assembly in Spokane WA from June 17-24 and will not be available.  For emergencies only, Reverend Chris Schriner will be available and you can contact him at
Rev Jo will be available again on June 25th..


I’d like to invite you to a workshop about a new way of engaging with global warming. Like me, you might feel confused about the best way to help, guilty that you are not doing more, or even wondering if it’s too late anyway. I’m excited to share with you an approach to global warming that has given me optimism and focus!
The approach is described in the book “Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming” which shows the results of 5 years of rigorous scientific research on the 100 most substantive, already existing solutions for addressing global warming. The solutions were identified and studied by a group of 200 researchers and other experts from 22 countries led by author, environmentalist, and entrepreneur Paul Hawken. The results reveal astounding news: it is possible not just to slow global warming, but to start reversing it by 2050! Reversal begins when concentrations of climate warming gases in the atmosphere begin a “drawdown” trajectory.
The workshop will occur Saturday June 15th 10am – 12pm in Ockerman 7/8 (where our adjacent Methodist Church socializes after services). It will include an introduction to Project Drawdown and the Pachamama Alliance (the workshop creator), an opportunity to reflect on how we have been relating to global warming, a video of Paul Hawken explaining the Project Drawdown plan, and a group discussion on what we may want to do to participate. The workshop will also describe the 5-session follow-on course that is currently being piloted around the country.
Please remember to RSVP by emailing me, Jeff Goby, at  
Snacks will be served. I hope you can join!
Black & White Auction Item Outing

MPUUC members Ilze Duarte, Melissa Holmes, Armando & Raymond Holmes-King, Don Ramie, Jessica Steele and Drew Wilson enjoyed a hike along Sabercat Creek, led by Paul Davis, in fulfillment of a Black & White auction item.  The hike was mostly in the shade, fortunately, and the group enjoyed both Paul’s commentary on wildlife and Don’s commentary on the prehistoric ages, since some of the placards had been produced by him in coordination with the Children’s Natural History Museum.
Fremont is considering a navigation center for homeless residents at the Niles Discovery Church. This would help Fremont neighbors currently living on the streets have access to the shelter and supportive resources they need. Pushback from a group of neighbors has placed the navigation center in jeopardy. Sign this petition to support needed services for our unhoused neighbors and stand up for a welcoming, inclusive Fremont.
Rev Jo Green attended the Council meeting on June 11th and spoke in support of the Navigation Center and the tolerance and kindness it would show.  There were many residents there in fear of what they believe would bring “dangerous elements” into the neighborhood to harm their children.  

“I urge anyone who can participate on June 18th to attend the Council meeting at 3300 Capitol Ave. and speak in support of the Navigation Center.  It was difficult to hear that some thought Niles Discovery Church was doing this to make money or that only mentally ill or drug addicted people would be benefiting from using the Center.  There is much fear and intolerance in those speaking against the project which could provide housing to those unsheltered.  Not in my neighborhood is the common theme.  If you are available on June 18th at 6:30 pm to sign an orange comment card to speak or to just attend and stand with others who are speaking in support, I urge you to attend.”
Please see article below for more information.
Support the Proposed Housing Navigation Center in Niles
James Thomas of the Niles Discovery Church is asking for our support for a very good cause. Niles Discovery Church is proposing to build a Housing Navigation Center that will help the homeless who have jobs but cannot otherwise afford housing. It would not be a homeless shelter per se. From an news story dated May 7, 2019:

“The idea is to put up modular buildings on an open field owned by a church and create a 24/7 navigation center to help the homeless get into housing.

The city of Fremont wants to get people out of RVs and tents and into stable housing, which is why it’s negotiating with Niles Discovery Church to convert the grassy lot into a temporary home for 45 people. The navigation center would be run by an outside agency and offer showers, meals and beds, along with substance abuse and mental health services.

The navigation center would house people for six months and be modeled after a successful center in Berkeley.”

More than 1,000 people have signed an online petition expressing concerns for a variety of reasons. Vocal opponents have been emailing city council members and plan to show up at the upcoming city council meetings to voice their opposition to the center.

If members of MPUUC wish to support the efforts of Niles Discovery Church, they can email city council members and attend the June 11 and June 18 city council meetings. The issue is likely to be on the agenda at the June 18 meeting, but you can show your support at any meeting by speaking during the public comment period. If you do not wish to speak, you can stand in support when Judy Zlatnick speaks — email her to let her know you plan to attend:

More info about the navigation center may be found on the Niles Discovery Church website: City council member email addresses and info about city council meetings may be found here: If you have trouble finding this info on the web, email me and I will share it with you.

Here’s a sample email to Fremont City Council members. Please modify as you see fit:

Dear Fremont City Council Members,

I would like to express my support as a long-time Fremont resident for the Niles Discovery Church Housing Navigation Center project. This project will not be a homeless shelter but rather a means for those homeless people who work but are unable to find housing without such a program. This will not ruin the cozy neighborhood feel of the Niles area. I wouldn’t want that, I love visiting Niles for the lovely shops, dining and community events. But the city as a whole and Niles specifically already has a homeless problem and we are ignoring it instead of trying to help. Niles Discovery Church is trying to take a compassionate but practical approach and they need our support.
A Free Trip to Egypt!

Bet that got your attention! It is the name of a movie. Our friend, Samina Sundas (American Muslim Voice) says:  On June 12th, join Kindness Films for a nationwide, one-day-only, premiere screening event of the film FREE TRIP TO EGYPT and join the #PledgeToListen Day of Unity.
Seeking to build a bridge of mutual understanding and friendship, Tarek Mounib (a Canadian-Egyptian muslim) decides to reach out to the very people who fear him. He travels across the U.S. to find Americans concerned about an Islamic threat and makes them an intriguing offer: a Free Trip to Egypt.
Immediately following the film, a panel discussion led by Tarek and thought leaders will be streamed into theaters to launch a discussion about how to listen and bring more kindness to the world – and asking everyone to take the online #PledgeToListen and to look beyond that which divides us and to bring authentic conversations to their community.
So please join the #PledgeToListen Day of Unity and attend the event on June 12th. To find a theater near you visit: . LINK TO TICKETS
Tickets for the 6/12 #PledgeToListen Day of Unity Fathom screening are available for purchase now – find your theater by entering your zip code:
Follow the film on Facebook and Twitter, & Instagram:
Book Signing

On June 23 our Minister Emeritus, Dr. Chris Schriner, will preach at Mission Peak. After the service he will sign copies of his books, including Bridging the God Gap: Finding Common Ground Among Believers, Atheists and Agnostics; Your Living Mind: The Mystery of Consciousness and Why It Matters to You; Do Think Twice: Provocative Reflections on Age-Old Questions; and Feel Better Now: 30 Ways to Handle Frustration in 3 Minutes or Less. 20% of the proceeds will be donated to MPUUC.
Children & Youth Religious Education (CaYRE)

CaYRE’s summer program starts June 16th. All children and youth may find a member sharing their passion, a fun craft to make or an exciting game to play.  It will be a fun summer filled with social time with all participants meeting in room 1.  Nursery care will continue to be offered.    
We are taking signups for teachers and assistants.  This summer it’s teacher’s choice: Share your passion what ever it may be or get into the fun with a game day! Please sign up using our google form  or on the poster in Cole Hall.If you have any questions, please contact us at
Spiritual Literacy
To see a world in a grain of sand
and a heaven in a wild flower
To hold infinity in the palm of your
hand and eternity in an hour.
– William Blake
The Spiritual Literacy Group is looking for 1 or 2 more members. What, you might ask, is Spiritual Literacy?
From ancient times, people have searched for the sacred in everyday life. Medieval Catholic monks called it “reading the book of the world.”  Muslims suggest that everything that happens outside and inside us is a letter to be read.  
The group meets twice a month, on a Sunday evening, at John and Jackie Porter’s apartment, to share soup and bread, and to explore Spiritual Literacy. Each week we view a half-hour video on an aspect of spirituality and then discuss it. Before the next session we focus on that aspect of spirituality, things like “attention,” “beauty,” and “compassion.”
For information call John or Jackie Porter (510.744.1587), or any of the group’s members: Holly Ito, Linda Messia, Jo Ann Schriner, and Elke Gunn.

We NEED your help!?? Cole Hall does not magically transform into a special place for our services each Sunday.?? It requires a small army of volunteers.?? We’ve had a few ‘retirements’ lately and we have some spots
to fill.?? PLEASE let Jen King know if you can fill in for any of the following:

URGENT: We have no one to do set-up for the 2nd Sunday of each month!

We also need people for the following:

Additional Set-up assistance for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Sundays of each month

Additional Greeter for the 1st and 3rd Sundays of each month

PPT Clickers & AV Technicians for ALL SUNDAYS (We will train you! We

Additional Take-down assistance for the 2nd Sunday of each month.
You can sign up on an ongoing basis for the Sunday’s indicated above by contacting Jen King, or you can sign up on and ad hoc basis by following this link:
Celebrating Mission Peak’s 25th Anniversary – Save These Dates!!

2019 marks 25 years of MPUUC’s existence as a congregation and we think that’s a milestone worth celebrating.  We will have many different celebrations throughout the year.  Please reserve the following dates on your calendar now.  You won’t want to miss them!

June 28-30 – MPUUC’s annual Campout!
Spring has sprung and Summer is right around the corner.  This year’s Congregational Camp Out will be June 28-30 at Chabot Regional Park.  We have room for up to 50 campers.  Overnight Camping is available for one or two nights (tents only).  In addition we have lots of activities and
a Potluck BBQ and Campfire planned on Saturday for those who would like to just come for the day.  Sign-ups will be available after services over the coming month.  The cost is $20 for one night of camping (per family), $30 for two nights camping (per family), or $5 per person for day use.  Signing up will help us plan food, events, and parking. Carpooling is encouraged as parking is limited. More detailed information will be sent out closer to the dates. If you have any
questions, please contact Jen King.

September 8 – 25th Anniversary Picnic Celebration
– After the annual Water Ceremony at Cole Hall we will gather at one of the reserved picnic areas at Lake Elizabeth for a Picnic/BBQ celebration.  We will have games for the kids, a jam session & sing-a-long, and other fun activities.  Come join us and enjoy hanging out with friends & family and celebrating MPUUC.

[More details regarding these events will follow closer to the dates.  If you have questions or suggestions for additional events or you want to help with an event, please contact Jen King].
Turning Love Into Justice:
The Tri-City Interfaith Council ( is a grass-roots organization bringing together people of diverse religious beliefs from Fremont, Newark, and Union City (California). Rev. Jo Green, Rev. Barbara Meyers and Paul K. Davis are members.  Join in!

Call your Elected Officials!  
Calls can make a difference! Contact your representatives to alert them to your views!

Congressperson Eric Swalwell 510-247-1388 or go to 
Ro Khanna  (202) 225-2631 
Senator Kamala Harris   (202) 224 – 3553
Senator Diane Feinstein (202) 224-3841
Mission Peak UU | 2950 Washington Blvd Fremont CA | 510.252.1477 |