Thursday, December 23, 2010

Year End "Faith in Action" Statement by All Saints Rector Ed Bacon

As we come close the end of another year of working to turn the human race into the human family we pause to celebrate some significant legislative victories. Last week’s repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” ended seventeen years of state sanctioned discrimination against gay and lesbian military personnel. And today we applaud the Senate approval of the New START treaty – a bilateral nuclear arms agreement -- by a 71 to 26 margin.

Other good news from the so-called “lame duck congress” was the extension of unemployment benefits, the approval of health care legislation for 9/11 first responders and an encouraging spirit of bipartisan cooperation. There is much to be grateful for!

There is also much work still to do. Sadly the Dream Act -- which offered a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants brought to the country as children -- fell short of moving forward. Standing in alignment with God’s love, justice and compassion calls us always to be advocating for those on the margins. While we rejoice in these important steps forward we also redouble our efforts to make God's love tangible by working for comprehensive immigration reform and call the new congress to prioritize issues of poverty, peacemaking and equality.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Lydia Wilkins remembered in the Pasadena Star News

by Janette Williams, posted 12/20/2010 in the Pasadena Star News

PASADENA - Lydia Wilkins, who lived through more than a century of hard-fought change in race relations and relished casting her vote for the first black president has died. She was 106.

A devoted - and impeccably stylish - parishioner at All Saints Episcopal Church, Wilkins continued to attend services until two weeks before her death on Dec. 9, All Saints Rector Ed Bacon said Monday.

Wilkins, who would have turned 107 on Jan. 12, will be celebrated at with a memorial and party in her honor at the church on Jan. 16, he said.
"She was nothing short of amazing," Bacon said. "She was a person full of stories and eager to tell them to the world."

When she was born in 1904 women couldn't vote, and it was was difficult or impossible for black men to cast a ballot, Wilkins recalled in an interview with the Star-News before the 2008 presidential election.

"I didn't think I'd live that long - I think it's wonderful," she said of seeing Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama run for the presidency.

Until she was about 101, Wilkins drove herself to the polls and her daughter, Marjorie Jones, said that both her parents were always politically active.

Wilkins, a lifelong Episcopalian, also lived to see profound changes in her church, and at All Saints, the Rev. Zelda Kennedy said.

"No one else brings that history, that link, to so many different aspects of Episcopalian history, some of us can't even begin to imagine," Kennedy said. "When she was growing up girls couldn't be acolytes, and women couldn't be priests. She lived long enough to have a priest like me."

Bacon called Wilkins a "pioneer in all of that change."

"She had very little patience with any kind of discrimination, ... and she wanted the church to change more quickly than it did," he said. "She was rather an impatient person, an irreverent person, but a very holy person."

Growing up in East Orange, N.J., Wilkins said she never encountered much overt racism, and she graduated from a racially mixed high school.

"New Jersey didn't have strict segregation," she recalled in 2008. "No one at school was allowed to call names."

But she wasn't always insulated from prejudice.

Wilkins remembered dropping out of Temple University in Philadelphia because of swimming class.

"That's why I didn't finish college," she said. "They encouraged the girls to get out of the pool if I got in. It was terrible ... When they did that, I wouldn't go back, and that's what they wanted."

However, she did meet her husband at Temple, and the couple came to Pasadena in 1933 when he became vicar of St. Barnabas Episcopal Church on North Fair Oaks Avenue.

The couple and their two daughters stayed until 1942, when he became a World War II Army chaplain, and they retired to Pasadena after he had headed churches in Texas and North Carolina.

Wilkins always remained interested in politics and church affairs, Bacon said.

"The word she's associated with in my mind is engagement," Bacon said. "She insisted on being engaged with everything, everyone at the church and, when I took her to dinner, being engaged with everyone in the restaurant. ... I've always thought the secret of her longevity is that she simply insisted on authentic engagement."

Wilkins herself attributed her long life to never drinking cola.

"My grandmother said it wasn't good for me," she said in 2008.

There may have been a couple of other secrets.

"Yes, she did like her martini," Bacon said, laughing.

And her daughter joked about her mother's "interesting" start to the day.

"For breakfast she likes half a grapefruit, all the sections cut out, sprinkled with sugar - and then rum," Jones said.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

All Saints Church Applauds Senate Repeal of DADT


All Saints Church stands with inclusion allies across the country celebrating today’s landmark decision repealing “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.”

“We applaud the US Senate in this dramatic reversal of structural discrimination against LGBT persons serving in the military,” said the Reverend Ed Bacon, Rector of All Saints Church. “Nothing expresses the spirit of Christmas more than this and other acts of justice, peace and inclusion.”

“I was delighted to hear Senator Joe Lieberman quoting Dr. King in his remarks from Washington today,” Bacon continued. “At All Saints Church we are committed to being part of the process of bending that arc of the moral universe toward justice and celebrate that today justice was done in the Senate.”

The Reverend Susan Russell, a senior associate at All Saints Church and a member of the HRC (Human Rights Campaign) Religion Council said, “Today was a victory of honesty over homophobia. As an equal rights activist I am thrilled that the long standing “wrong” of DADT has been righted. And as a military mom I’m equally thrilled that the way has been cleared for my son to have the best possible colleagues serving alongside him without regard to their sexual orientation.”

“In this season of Advent 2010 we celebrate not only the coming of Christmas next week but the arrival today another step forward on realizing the American dream of liberty and justice for all.”


For further comment or more information, contact:

The Reverend Susan Russell
Senior Associate for Communications
714-356-5718 – mobile

All Saints Church 132 North Euclid Avenue Pasadena CA 91001

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Transformative Power of Words with Kim Rosen

This Sunday -- December 19th -- in the Rector's Forum:
Kim Rosen has discovered that words have the power to change one’s life. When Rosen and her book Saved by a Poem were profiled in the New Yorker a year ago, millions of other individuals also discovered this. We know those times when a poem, a prayer, or some sacred writing is speaking to us because it reverberates somewhere in our soul.

Rosen takes this attraction a step further by asserting that speaking this poem or prayer aloud may cause shifts in our feelings, thoughts, and biochemistry that open our consciousness, aligning us with what matters most. Especially during these challenging and uncertain times, sacred writings can become companions through difficulty, a wakeup call, and a source of peace and inspiration.

If, for some reason, you had a negative reaction to poetry in your school days, leave that all behind, and prepare to be surprised by the possibilities for new and deep experiences in your life. Copies of Rosen’s book will be available.

In the All Saints Forum at 10:15 a.m. ... or Live Streaming here.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Bill Brummel in the Pasadena Star News

Letters to the editor: The language of cancer
12/12/2010 -- Pasadena Star News

As a 13-year cancer survivor and a person with deep admiration for Elizabeth Edwards, I again find myself disturbed by the way many in the media (and often the public) refer to someone who has died of the disease.

I've already seen many headlines and heard television news anchors lead with some variation of the line, "Elizabeth Edwards loses her battle with cancer." Rarely is this language associated with those who die of other ailments. Have you ever heard it reported that someone lost his/her battle with heart disease or a stroke?

For many of us who have fought or are fighting cancer, winning or losing the battle is not simply defined by how long one lives. It's just as much defined by how one lives with the disease.

Since her diagnosis six year ago, Elizabeth Edwards lived a passionate and courageous life. She faced her many personal trials with grace and dignity. She remained a devoted mother, and a dedicated activist for her causes and beliefs. She lived life fully and completely.

Cancer may have taken Elizabeth Edwards' life; it most certainly did not defeat her.

Bill Brummel

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The end of an era: Lydia Wilkins 1904 - 2010

A Message from the Rector
December 10, 2010

I want to share with you sad news of the death of All Saints’ oldest member, Lydia Wilkins. She passed peacefully from this life to the next yesterday, two months shy of her 107th birthday.

It is almost impossible for me to imagine a Sunday morning without her determined spirit, warm smile and quick wit emanating from the front pew. The many wonderful stories we have to share with one another about her long and influential life in Pasadena will continue for the rest of our lives.

A memorial service celebrating her life will be on January 16th at 5:00 p.m. Please keep her daughter, Marjorie, and her family in your prayers. And give thanks for the gift of Lydia, knowing that heaven is an even more interesting place now that she is there.

Yours in Christ’s love,
Ed Bacon, Rector
All Saints Church, Pasadena

Give rest, O Christ, to your servant with your saints
Where sorrow and pain are no more, neither sighing but life afterlasting.

Read the the Pasadena Star News tribute to Lydia here.

Lydia Wilkins
January 12, 1904 - December 9, 2010

from the January 2008 Pasadena Star News feature
Pasadena woman celebrates her 104th birthday

PASADENA - When Lydia Wilkins was born Jan. 17, 1904, women didn't have the vote and voting was difficult or impossible for most black men. Now, at 104, Wilkins is getting ready to cast her ballot for a woman or a black man for president of the United States in the November elections. "I didn't think I'd live that long - I think it's wonderful," she said of candidates Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. "But I think I'll vote for Obama. Yes, why not?"

As Black History Month begins this month, Wilkins is a living link to a century of hard-fought change in race relations. "I have lived in some terrible times," she said, sitting in the tidy bungalow she and her late husband, the Rev. William Alfred Wilkins, retired to more than 30 years ago. "People were still black and white. It made a difference."

Growing up in East Orange, N.J., Wilkins said she was spared much of the overt racism experienced by blacks in the South and elsewhere. She graduated from a racially mixed high school. "New Jersey didn't have strict segregation," she said. "No one at school was allowed to call names, and most of the children did a lot to fight segregation. The boys played football, and they played so well they were always on the team."

Her mother and grandmother were strict, and neighbors were always on the watch for misbehavior, she recalled. "My parents were right on their toes," she said, smiling. "The least thing that happened at school and they were right there. We didn't have all this killing when I was growing up."

But she still remembers dropping out of Temple University in Philadelphia because of swimming class. "That's why I didn't finish college," she said. "They encouraged the girls to get out of the pool if I got in. It was terrible. Boys aren't as bad as girls, are they? When they did that, I wouldn't go back and that's what they wanted."

But she did meet her husband at Temple. The couple came to Pasadena in 1933, when her husband became vicar of St. Barnabas Episcopal Church on North Fair Oaks Avenue. They and their two daughters stayed until 1942, when he became a World War II Army chaplain, and they retired here after he had headed churches in Texas and North Carolina.

In 1982, the couple celebrated their golden wedding anniversary at All Saints Episcopal Church, where Wilkins still attends services every Sunday and goes for lunch across the street at McCormick and Schmick. "It's one of the highlights of her Sundays," said Barbara Jackson, who has helped "Miss Lydia" since July - and is the beneficiary of her advice on etiquette, table-settings, grammar and the proper way to clean silver.

Wilkins is still "sharp as a tack," said her daughter, Marjorie Jones, 74, who lives in Vallejo and visits often. "Nothing gets by her." Her mother was always politically active, Jones said, and her father was "very much involved in the NAACP."

"Dinnertime conversation was always political, and she didn't go a day without reading the paper and having something to discuss," Jones said. "She always goes to vote, and she won't do an absentee - she has to go there."

Until she was about 101, Wilkins drove herself to the polls. "When she turned 100, she went out and purchased a brand new car," said Andre Vaughn, her next-door neighbor. "She gave it up when she was involved in an accident. She wasn't at fault; someone ran a red light." Vaughn recalled a police officer coming to his door. "He asked, `Is she really 100?' and when I said yes, he was flabbergasted."

Wilkins doesn't dwell on the past, Vaughn said. "She's always in the here and now. Once in a while she'll reminisce, tell some funny thing, something bad she did as a little girl," he said. She spends her day watching television - "Dr. Phil, he's my favorite," she said - and being out and about, regularly getting her nails and hair done.

Her secret to a long life, she says, is that she's never had a cola drink. "My grandmother said it wasn't good for me." Jones said her mother has a few other secrets for longevity, too.

"She still likes her martini," Jones said, laughing. "What's interesting to me is for breakfast she likes half a grapefruit, all the sections cut out, sprinkled with sugar - and then rum."

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Reverend Mpho Tutu Comes to the All Saints Rector's Forum!

On Sunday, December 12 we are delighted to welcome to the Rector's Forum the Reverend Mpho Tutu -- priest, author, activist, daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu and co-author of  "Made for Goodness." She will share with us some of the creative journey of authoring this inspiring book with her famous father and the core values of hope, love, justice and compassion that ground her in her work and witness.

Here's how Archbishop Tutu describes the book they wrote together:

She will also introduce us to the Archbishop's newest book -- The Children of God Storybook Bible --retelling more than 50 of the Bible’s most beloved stories—Adam and Eve in the garden, Noah on the ark, Abraham in the desert, Jesus on the mountaintop. Each of the stories speaks to God’s desire for all people to love and forgive one another. The stories show how God works through history, and each one ends with a short prayer which personalizes the message for the reader’s own life.

One of the goals of the book is to reflect the global nature of the Bible’s tales, and the beautiful pictures illustrate this. The author says, “In the spirit of celebrating children all over the world each illustrator in this book has been invited to draw upon his/her own unique and rich cultural heritage...Their art is truly a marvelous reflection of how we are all made in God’s image.”

Storybook Bible Archbishop Desmond Tutu Book Trailer

"Children of every age will go away knowing that nothing can ever destroy God's love for any and every one of us. And I want those children to know that one of the most beautiful attributes of God's creation is its diversity." -- Desmond Tutu
Come be inspired!

Monday, December 6, 2010

There's Still Time to Order from the Alternative Christmas Market!

Instead of buying “things” for family and friends this Christmas, your dollars will be going to help kids visit their parents who are in jail; to help gang members get back on track; to help homeless and abused women; to help kids in foster care; and the list goes on.

The BEST EVER Alternative Christmas Market was held on December 5th, but there's still time to order!

See our fabulous Alternative Christmas Market Catalog -- and the equally fabulous ACM Shopping List.

For more information contact Norma Sigmund in the Peace & Justice Office at 626.583.2734 or

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Diocesan Convention 2010

The 115th Annual Meeting of the Diocese of Los Angeles was held in Riverside December 3 & 4. Here's a look at All Saints in Action @ Diocesan Convention!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sacred Activism: Putting Spiritual Knowledge into Action

Ed Bacon will join Andrew Harvey for [ALOUD], the Interfaith discussion series, at the L.A. Central Library, on Tuesday, December 7 at 7:00 p.m. Harvey, a poetic and passionate mystic and writer, suggests that what unites all religions “is a truth that the service of God is putting love into action.” He discusses his dramatic life conversion from mysticism to mystic activism with the Rector of All Saints Church—known for its focus on social justice initiatives. ALOUD programs take place at the Los Angeles Central Library's Mark Taper Auditorium, 630 W. Fifth Street, Los Angeles, CA 90071.  Get more information and make reservations online here.

Monday, November 29, 2010


Instead of buying “things” for folks this Christmas, your dollars will be going to help kids visit their parents who are in jail; to help gang members get back on track; to help homeless and abused women; to help kids in foster care; and the list goes on.

Join us in Sweetland Hall on Sunday, December 5th for our BEST EVER Alternative Christmas Market!

For a sneak peek at what will be offered this year see our fabulous Alternative Christmas Market Catalog -- and the equally fabulous ACM Shopping List.

For more information contact Norma Sigmund in the Peace & Justice Office.

Rick Nahmias' "Golden States of Grace" in the Rector's Forum December 5th

from "Golden States of Grace" by Rick Nahmias
Award winning photographer Rick Nahmias brings his extraordinary witness to what the Los Angeles Times calls “grace in even the most difficult circumstances” in his book “Golden States of Grace.” The book contains photographs, prayers and commentary about and by marginalized spiritual communities which Nahmias calls “stories of dignity and stories of people going against the grain.” Come be in inspired by the common well-spring of the search for the sacred in these diverse words and images and by the artist who archived them.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Arianna Huffington in the Rector's Forum THIS Sunday ... November 28th

The U.S. is in crisis.

“What were thought by many to be the ingredients of the good life — a job, a home, a secure retirement, a college education for your kids, and prospects for a brighter future for them — are no longer attainable simply by hard work and playing by the rules.”

Those are the words of All Saints’ friend, Arianna Huffington, who will be our guest in the Rector’s Forum Sunday, November 28.

Huffington is focusing her formidable intelligence, influence, and charisma on the hard truths and big ideas necessary for us to redefine "the good life." She is brutally honest about the as yet unfed hunger that propelled Barack Obama into the White House two years ago. She assesses it as a still unaddressed need for a public life of large purpose and a politics of moral and spiritual aspiration. In fact, she argues that our politicians are destroying the American Dream.

Huffington visits us this Sunday not only with her own criticism of the Obama Administration and the dysfunctional U.S. Congress, but also with six innovative solutions which start with combating the isolation generated by economic disorder, and end with holding our leaders accountable — asking them to seize the policy reins and stop waiting for the economy to magically "turn the corner" on its own.

Put your Thanksgiving into action by coming to learn from and be inspired by the founder of Huffington Post and author of the new book, Third World America: How Our Politicians Are Abandoning the Middle Class and Destroying the American Dream. Come and bring friends at 10:15 a.m. this Sunday. Copies of Arianna’s new book will be available for purchase.

If you cannot be in church on Sunday, please join us for the live stream of the Rector's Forum at 10:15 a.m.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Anglican Covenant 101

Anglican Covenant 101 -- Tuesday evening November 23rd in the Guild Room from 7-8:30p.m. A session designed for our Diocesan Convention delegates and open to anyone interested in the latest on the proposed Anglican Covenant process.

To find out more:
Print out a copy of the proposed Covenant here.
Visit Anglicans for Comprehensive Unity

"Come, ye thankful people, come!"

There's no place like home for the holidays ... and no place like All Saints Church for Thanksgiving Eve!

Prepare for your holiday weekend with family and friends with a centering Eucharist on Thanksgiving Eve. Carissa Baldwin will preside and Wilma Jakobsen offers a meditation. Members of Canterbury and Coventry Choirs offer music. Child care provided. All are welcome to attend this beautiful, reflective service.

Join us Wednesday evening at 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

THE FAMILY DINNER with Laurie David

JUST in time for Thanksgiving, Laurie David -- writer, activist and producer (of An Inconvenient Truth with Al Gore) and a contributing blogger to The Huffington Post -- turns her attention to the family dinner table.

With kids and families busier than ever, some may not understand the charming custom David is calling us back to in her new book The Family Dinner: A Great Way to Connect with Your Kids One Meal at a Time.
The opportunity to sit together in meaningful conversation about one another’s lives and the news of the day is a way to invest in one another, to get to know one another in a new way.
“Dinner,” David says, “is as much about digestible conversation as it is about food.” David spoke previously at the Rector’s Forum about her book The Downto-Earth Guide to Global Warming. Come find ways to warm your family and your friends with this animating speaker.

Sunday, November 21st at 10:15 a.m. in the Rector's Forum ... or streaming live on the All Saints website.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Let the Holidays Begin!

Time to mark your calendars for the coming-soon holiday season services at All Saints Church! For more complete information on any of these upcoming events visit our website or call 626-796-1172.


Saturday, December 11, 5 p.m. -- Second Saturday Celebration Tree Lighting and Carol Sing: Carols, cocoa and festive fun for all ages!

Sunday, December 12, 1 p.m. -- Our Lady of Guadalupe Service: Bilingual worship and celebration with music by Dan Cole.

Sunday, December 12, 5 p.m. -- Advent Evening Service: Troveres and Troubadours offer music of Chilcott, Thomas and How. Abel Lopez offers a meditation.

Sunday, December 19, 5 p.m. -- Advent Evensong: Canterbury Choir and Chamber Ensemble offer selections from Messiah by George Frideric Handel. Anne Peterson offers a meditation.


Friday, December 24 -- Christmas Eve

Family Service at 3p.m. -- The Rector and friends tell the Christmas story; Mastersingers and Troubadours offer music.

Festive Eucharist at 5:30 p.m. -- Trouveres with brass ensemble offer music of Jungst and Joubert. Susan Russell preaches.

Festive Eucharist at 8:00 p.m. -- Canterbury Choir and chamber orchestra offer Mass in G Major by Franz Schubert and music of Gonzalez and Handel. The Rector preaches.

Festive Eucharist at 11:00 p.m. -- Coventry Choir and chamber orchestra offer Mass in B-flat Major by Frans Schubert and music of Poulenc and Wilcocks. The Rector preaches.

Saturday, December 25 -- Christmas Day
Christmas Day Eucharist at 10:30 a.m. -- Zelda Kennedy preaches

Sunday, December 26 -- First Sunday of Christmas
Healing Services at 9 & 11:15 a.m. and 1 p.m. -- Abel Lopez preaches at 9 & 11:15 / Zelda Kennedy preaches at 1 p.m.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

November 21st JAZZ VESPERS: Walter Smith III

We are delighted to welcome saxophonist Walter Smith III on Sunday evening, November 21st at 5:00  p.m. for the second in our 2010-2011 series of Jazz Vespers. Lori Kizzia will offer the meditation.

Walter Smith III began playing the saxophone at the age of 7 in his hometown of Houston, TX. At Houston’s High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, in 1998, Smith received a Clifford Brown/Stan Getz Fellowship from IAJE and NFAA; the NFAA Young Talent Award; a full tuition scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music; and a United States Presidential Scholar in the Arts medal. Walter Graduated from Berklee in 2003 with a degree in Music Education.

While in Boston, Walter was selected by the Boston Jazz Society to receive its annual award whose past winners have included Branford Marsalis and Donald Harrison. In July of 2002, Walter walked away from the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland with third place in the 1st annual International Saxophone Competition, as well as winning the Audience’s Favorite Award. In 2003, Walter moved to New York and began studying at Manhattan School of Music on a full tuition scholarship to receive a master’s in jazz performance.

While in New York, Smith kept himself busy touring and performing with such artists as Roy Haynes and Ralph Peterson, as well as Bilal, Destiny’s Child and Lauryn Hill. Walter has performed all over the world participating in numerous national and international festivals as well as famed stages in the U.S. such as
Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center. Smith has shared the stage and/or appeared on recordings with many jazz notables including Terence Blanchard, Darren Barrett, Herbie Hancock, Eric Reed, Mulgrew Miller, Joe Sample, Bob Hurst, Donald Harrison, Wayne Shorter, Joe Lovano, Bill Pierce, Myron Walden, Walter Beasley, Lewis Nash, Terri Lynne-Carrington, and a host of others. To date, Walter has appeared on over 50 recordings that are released worldwide.

Over the past few years, besides leading a quintet, Walter is/has been a member of several amazing groups (recording and touring) including the Terence Blanchard group, Eric Harland’s quintet, Ambrose Akinmusire’s band, Christian Scott’s group, the Sean Jones sextet, Jason Moran’s Big Bandwagon (In My Mind:Monk at Town Hall), and the Christian McBride situation band.

For more information on this amazing musician, vist his website. For more infomation about All Saints Jazz Vespers conact Melissa Hayes in the music office.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Entering Stillness: An Advent Opportunity @ All Saints Church

The Advent season easily can become a time of anxiety rather than hopeful expectation. We invite you to rest in the stillness of God in this series of Saturday morning retreats.

Nourish your spirit as we explore different ways -- through movement, music, silence, and imagination -- of gently entering into stillness and experiencing the presence of God within us.

The series will be offered from 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. during the four Saturdays in Advent: November 27 and December 4, 11 and 18.

This is the first in a series of offerings by the Spiritual Growth Ministries program. For more information contact Susan Ortmeyer or call the Pastoral Care & Spiritual Growth office at 626.583.2737. Childcare is provided upon request.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

"Being Church in Difficult Times: Our Youth & Our Future"

The Reverend Carissa Baldwin -- Director of Peace & Justice at All Saints Church -- makes her Pasadena preaching debut this Sunday, November 14th at 7:30, 9:00 and 11:15.

"Being Church in Difficult Times: Our Youth & Our Future" is the title of Sunday's sermon. Don't miss the chance to come hear this dynamic, young leader inspire and challenge!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

"Sweeter than honey from the honeycomb"

The decrees of the LORD are firm,
       and all of them are righteous.

They are more precious than gold, 
       than much pure gold;
They are sweeter than honey, 
        than honey from the honeycomb.

It was a "Psalm 19 moment" this week at All Saints Church when honey was literally dripping down the walls in the chapel:

To the rescue came smart people with tall ladders who knew what to do about bees-in-the-walls:

 And VOILA! ... honey AND honeycomb -- fresh from the All Saints Chapel!  

So it is still as true as ever that whoever you are and wherever you find yourself, there is a place for you here at All Saints Church. But if you happen to be a honeybee, you'll be needing to find a new place to make your honey!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Random thoughts on the occasion of the annoucement of the retirement of a bishoop

by Susan Russell

Our friend Bishop Gene Robinson announced last week that after 9 years as Bishop of New Hampshire he will be retiring in January 2013. Here are a few thoughts:

The very first hymn I ever memorized (all five verses!) was "The Church's One Foundation." I could still sing them all for you this very minute (since I can evidently remember things I memorized in 3rd grade but can't remember where I put my car keys) but here's the "bottom line" ... which is also the first line:
The church's one foundation
is Jesus Christ her Lord ...
There's a lot more after that but that's the point. Of the hymn and of the church. Founded on Jesus Christ our Lord to FOLLOW Jesus Christ our Lord ... to be the Body of Christ in the World. To make the Year of the Lord's Favor a reality. To bring that kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven.

And to make all that happen we've been given an abundance of historic tools that include doctrines and disciplines; prayer books and prie dieus; bibles and bishops.

If one of the most formative hymns in my journey was "The Church's One Foundation" then one of the most formative teachers was Jim Sanders ... who was my OT professor in seminary. He was the one who taught me -- over and over -- that what gets us in trouble over and over and OVER again is "worshipping the gift rather than the giver."

It got the Israelites in trouble in the desert between Egypt and the Promised Land when they decided to drag the golden calf out. It got the people of Israel in trouble once they BECAME the people of Israel when they kept forgetting that the point of the Temple was to worship God ... not to worship their Temple worship. And it's gotten the Church in trouble over and over and OVER again because instead of remembering that JESUS is the church's one foundation it gets all caught up in the other bits and pieces.

Like bishops.

I love bishops. Some of my best friends are bishops. I'm pleased, proud and thankful to be part of the church that has bishops ... a whole order of ministry specifically called and chosen to "guard the faith, unity and discipline of the church." And I'm particularly grateful to be part of the church that elects our bishops.

And here's the breaking news: bishops come and bishops go. We elect them. They serve. They retire. Some of them retire to some Dick Cheneyesque "undisclosed location" -- never to be heard from again -- and others retire to exercise vibrant ministries for years and years beyond their tenure as Diocesan. Or Suffragan. +Paul Moore comes to mind. So does +Barbara Harris. And (love him or hate him!) +Jack Spong.

So with all the hoopla around last Saturday's announcement of the impending retirement of the Bishop of New Hampshire, let's keep a few things in mind:

When +Gene retires in January 2013 he:
[a] will be 65 years old
[b] will have been Diocesan Bishop for 9 years and
[c] will have been ordained for 40 years ... and if that's not a nice biblical number, I don't know what is!
He's not being "run off." He's not going to disappear. And as fabulous a bishop as he has been for the great Diocese of New Hampshire I do not have a shadow of a doubt that the Holy Spirit has somebody else fabulous in mind to be the 10th Bishop of New Hampshire.

So let's review. Don't worship the gift, worship the giver. Remember that the church's ONE foundation is Jesus. And everybody sing:
Though with a scornful wonder
we see her sore oppressed,
by schisms rent asunder,
by heresies distressed,
yet saints their watch are keeping;
their cry goes up, "How long?"
And soon the night of weeping
shall be the morn of song.
So here's to bishops -- who come and go. And to Jesus -- who is with us always. And most of all to the Giver -- who is NOT to be confused with any of the abundant gifts we have been given by the one who loved us enough to become one of us in order to teach us how to walk in love with each other.

Human Rights Hero in Sunday's Rector's Forum

Steave Nemande

Cameroon is one of the large majority of African countries who still consider homosexuality an offence punishable by lengthy jail sentences and, in some cases, the death penalty. Steave Nemande, a medical doctor, is a fearlessly outspoken critic of laws criminalizing homosexuality.

Neamande is president of the human rights organization Alternatives-Cameroun, the first non-governmental organization fighting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity to be granted observer status by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights. He also directs the Access Centre health care facility founded by Alternatives-Cameroun to care for HIV and AIDS victims within the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community.

Through Nemande’s efforts, the Centre has gathered nearly 2,000 signatures to petition the Cameroonian National Assembly to decriminalize same-sex relations. Human Rights Watch honors Nemande this year for his tireless work to promote and defend the rights of people in Africa.

Come to encourage him on his brave journey! Hear his amazing story in the All Saints Rector's Forum on Sunday, November 14th at 10:15 ... or watch it on our live stream here.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Jackie Knowles and The Women's Room Receive National Recognition!

Congratulations to Jackie Knowles and The Women's Room on receiving the Daily Point of Light Award!

The Daily Point of Light Award is a national program honoring individuals and volunteer groups that have found innovative ways to meet community needs, leading efforts which often result in long-term solutions and impact social problems in their local community.

Established to mobilize individuals and organizations in America to solve community problems, one volunteer or volunteer effort is recognized with a Daily Point of Light Award each weekday. And TODAY is "Jackie Knowles Day"!!

From the Points of Light Institute website:
Jackie Knowles
Organization: ECPAC
Pasadena, California
Awarded: A Retreat from Homelessness

For the founders of the Women’s Room 1,200 was the magic number. They had to do something for the 1,200 people sleeping on the streets each night in Pasadena, California.

After a survey revealed a gap in available services for homeless women with no drug, alcohol or mental issues, the Women’s Issues Committee (WIC) of All Saints established The Women’s Room, a daytime refuge for women who are alone and homeless.

Jackie Knowles and a group of dedicated women became the force behind the development of The Women’s Room, a day program of Friends in Deed, the social service arm of the Ecumenical Council Pasadena Area Churches. Jackie located donors to repaint and decorate a large storage area, converting it into an inviting room for the women to gather.

The Women’s Room, founded in 2007, is an entirely volunteer-operated day center that provides a retreat where women stressed from living on the street can reclaim their identity as something other than just a homeless person. They come for showers, to do laundry, to use computers and telephones, to take a quiet nap, to have a bowl of freshly made soup and to get their hair styled. They laugh. They talk. They feel like women. They are safe emotionally and physically. The Women’s Room assists them in finding additional services they may need.

Jackie continues to manage the program and aid in developing the vision. Jackie recruits, trains and coordinates the volunteers for the program. Over the past two years the number of clients visiting the Women’s Room has grown from 2 or 3 to 35 per week. The Women’s Room has helped seven homeless women find housing, directed 50 women to services through other organizations and assisted one woman to become regularly employed.

Jackie’s vision for The Women’s Room has proven to be a transformational experience for both the clients and the volunteers. “Surely the impact on our lives makes an impact wherever our steps lead outside the corner of Los Robles and Washington Streets," confirms a volunteer at the Women’s Room.
Congratulations to Jackie and all those who made the Women's Room a reality -- helping make God's Love Tangible for women in need in Pasadena!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

LIVING THE VISION: Spirituality, Community, Peace & Justice!

Three minutes of celebrating All Saints Church on All Saints Sunday. ENJOY!!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

All Saints Sunday @ All Saints Church

A Celebration of Life in the
Presence of Death
Sunday, November 7
7:30 a.m. (Chapel)
9 &; 11:15 a.m. Requiem Eucharist
1:00 p.m. Bilingual (Spanish-English) service

NOTE: Incense will be used at 9, 11:15am & 1pm
an “Incense-Free” zone will be available in the Guild Room at 9 & 11:15am

We celebrate the truth that this community, what we call the communion of saints stronger than death.
All Saints Sunday, is our parish feast day when we traditionally honor all who have died — those great martyrs of history who gave their lives to defend their faith in the risen Christ, as well as those we have personally known and loved, whom we hold close to our hearts and minds, especially those who are victims of cruelty, war and violence.

At all services our memorial book, containing the names of loved ones will be placed on the altar. You are invited to look in the memorial book for the name of the person you love.

At 9 & 11:15 a.n. Coventry Choir will offer Requiem by Herbert Howells, an intensely beautiful and moving six-movement a cappella work, poignant in its consolation of grief and simple in its message of hope. The retiring procession will be John Tavener’s Song for Athene an exquisite work imbued with deep spirituality and mysticism.

For more information visit our website our call 626.583.2710.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Happy All Saints Day from All Saints Church

"Turning the Human Race Into the Human Family"

Saturday, October 30, 2010

ISLAM 101 as covered by The Los Angeles Times

A leading voice for Muslims in Southern California addresses friendly audience in Pasadena concerned about Muslim extremism and American hostility toward Islam.

'Islam in a nutshell' explained at Episcopal church

By Mitchell Landsberg, Los Angeles Times

The Rev. J. Edwin Bacon, rector of All Saints Church in Pasadena, had just returned from vacation when he heard about a Florida pastor who was threatening to burn copies of the Koran, Islam's holy book.

"I was disgusted," said Bacon, whose Episcopal church is known for its progressive stance on many issues, interfaith relations among them. He said he thought: "Rather than burning Korans, we should be studying them."

The Koran burning never took place. But from Bacon's reaction was born "Islam 101," a speaker series that ended Saturday with a lecture by Dr. Maher Hathout, senior advisor to the Muslim Public Affairs Council and a leading voice of Muslims in Southern California.

About 75 people came to the church to hear Hathout give a brief overview of "Islam in a nutshell," then answer questions from a friendly audience that seemed concerned both about Muslim extremism and American hostility toward Islam.

Hathout told the audience that as the "new kid on the block" among the three Abrahamic faiths, which include Judaism and Christianity, Islam has had two options: "to be accepted by other religions or to fight with them."

He continued: "We are now discovering … that we can be different without fighting, or it will be a miserable life. And it is a miserable life right now, if you ask me."

Hathout expressed horror at the discovery of explosives bound from Yemen to the United States, part of a suspected Al Qaeda terrorist plot. He said terrorism violates Islamic theology, and could ultimately destroy Islam. By using it "to defend Islam, you sacrifice Islam," he said.

At the same time, Hathout complained about the use of the term "Muslim terrorist." No one ever says a "Christian terrorist" bombed an abortion clinic, he said, adding, "They will not give the religious adjective to that person."

And he said he is angered by people who say that moderate Muslims have been too reluctant to denounce extremism.

"If I shout and you don't hear me, it means you are deaf," he said. "It doesn't mean I didn't shout."

All Saints is not alone in reaching out to the Muslim community in an attempt to better understand Islam. In the years since Sept. 11, 2001, numerous churches and synagogues, generally those associated with the progressive or liberal wings of their faiths, have invited Muslim speakers or partnered with Islamic organizations on interfaith events.

During the question-and-answer session, one member of the audience observed that if Hathout were to attend a "Christianity 101" lecture at All Saints, it would be different than a similar lecture at an evangelical church. She wondered if the same were true of Islam. Hathout said there is diversity within Islam, but also boundaries that cannot be crossed.

The question also spoke to another point: To a large degree, Saturday's event was a meeting of like-minded sensibilities. There probably weren't any prospective Koran burners in the audience. Hathout wasn't changing minds so much as informing them.

Bacon acknowledged as much afterward. "I've always thought that preaching to the choir is a very important thing," he said, "because the choir needs to be radicalized. On one level, you want to get the message taught. But on another level, you want them to be equipped and empowered to go out and courageously act."

Those who attended the three-lecture series, he said, will be better able to explain to others that "most of the 1.6 billion Muslims in the world view their religion as a religion of peace, not as a religion of terrorism."

"This is the real Islam," he said.

Copyright © 2010, Los Angeles Times

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Día de Los Muertos: Love and Celebration

Día de Los Muertos: Love and Celebration
Tuesday, November 2
7:30 p.m. in the All Saints Chapel

"Dia de Los Muertos" is a festive and colorful celebration honoring our loved ones as they were when they were alive. It is also a day when we can honor those whose names we may not know, those who are among the many who die worldwide because of poverty, violence, oppression, and war.

At All Saints Church we will celebrate the lives of all of these children of God – those we knew and those we did not know – on Tuesday, November 2 at 7:30 p.m. Please come to this joy-filled Día de los Muertos service and bring reminders of your loved ones. These can include your photographs, favorite foods and drinks, garments, flowers, stories, and other tangible memories.

We will gather these together with all of our memories in thanksgiving, prayer, and celebration as we love those who have gone before us.

For more information call 626.796.1172

Monday, October 25, 2010

Tom Hayden Returns to the Rector's Forum

"The Leadership in Exiting"

If the fact that this country marks the 10th anniversary of our war in Afghanistan causes you concern, you will want to be in the Rector’s Forum at All Saints Church in Pasadena on Sunday. Peace activist Tom Hayden updates us on a new study group’s proposal to “fast track a peace process” in Afghanistan and withdraw 32,000 American troops by October 2011 and another 38,000 by 2011.

The director of the study group, Matthew Hoh, is a former Marine and the first U.S. official to resign in protest of the Afghanistan war in 2009. Alternatives suggested in this report, “A New Way Forward,” will provoke discussion during President Obama’s review of war policy in December.

In the midst of public discouragement over the state of the economy and the paralyzed-by-polarity congress, is a viable peace movement possible? Former state senator and the leader of Sixties peace, justice and environmental movements, Tom Hayden has not lost heart. Come hear his thoughts on ending what he calls “these unwinnable, unaffordable and unnecessary wars” in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Join us for this important and imformative forum on Sunday, October 31 at 10:15 a.m. ... or watch the live video stream on the All Saints website.

For more information on the Rector's Forum call Maren Tompkins at 626.583.2711

Healing the soul of a nation

A Guest opinion by Rev. J. Edwin Bacon, Rabbi Joshua Levine-Grater and Dr. Maher Hathout
Posted: 10/22/2010 [Pasadena Star-News]

PRIOR to the Bush administration, many of us thought the practice of torture was beneath the United States government. It is certainly antithetical to our central values that all people are created equal and are endowed by certain inalienable rights - to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

In June, we joined with the National Religious Campaign Against Torture and interfaith religious leaders in decrying the evidence uncovered by Physicians for Human Rights that the U.S. government not only practiced torture but also experimented on detainees to refine torture techniques. While this month's report of unethical medical experiments on Guatemalans in the 1940s elicited public apologies from the Obama administration and a commitment to a thorough investigation, the only response to the evidence of these more recent experiments involving torture has been public denial by the CIA and silence from the White House. Medical experimentation without consent is wrong wherever it takes place. We need to uncover the full truth about our government's use of torture in order to begin healing our nation's soul.

Thomas Merton was once asked the question, "What is the contemporary face of evil?" Merton's answer was dehumanization. A whole host of immoral practices grow from one central cancerous thought: that certain lives are less valuable than others.

This lie has taken root in our time, for there is no life that is of less value than another. All of us have within our soul the living image of God. Every human being is sacred. When we do any harm to someone else, we have done that harm to God. Our practices of torture have unleashed into the world a flood of dehumanization, the effects of which we will feel and know for generations to come.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. believed that African-American people were not the only victims of racism. "Oppression has two victims," he said. "Both the recipient and the perpetrator of racism are victims." This is true of torture as well. We have reports of American soldiers who, having tortured detainees, are especially susceptible to suicide. Alyssa Petersen was one such soldier. She refused to participate in "enhanced interrogations" on naked detainees and days later took her own life. The official report said, "She could not be two people." Alyssa Petersen could not escape the torture inflicted on her own mind, soul, and body by the acts she was tasked with committing.

In protecting persons from torture, we are also protecting those who would inflict torture. You cannot cause intentional pain to another, who bears the image of God, without suffering trauma in your own soul.

Truly, the victims of torture include both its victims and its perpetrators. To an important degree that includes us all.

Accordingly, healing for victims of torture must also include everyone.We must do everything we can to become agents of healing instead of oppression and torture. And true healing involves honest accountability.

That is why you and I have a moral responsibility to urge President Obama, Congress and Attorney General Holder to initiate an investigation and ensure safeguards that torture and involuntary human experimentation will never happen again in the name of the United States. President Obama has refused to do so, effectively sweeping it under the rug arguing that he wants to "look forwards, and not backwards." But no victim can recover from the past by ignoring what occurred. The only way we can look forward with clarity of vision is to look backwards to heal what is wounded in our past. There is much moral reckoning that must be transacted. Trauma victims and trauma theory tell us that trauma cannot be healed unless and until it is acknowledged, reverenced, recognized and given a moral content.

We must alter the mindsets which allow for such heinous evils as torture. Allowing torture against human beings has become our new norm because of the blanket excuse, "They are terrorists."

In this way we have replaced the title God gave to the human being - child of God. In the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer, we ask God to purify our conscience by God's daily visitation. The Jewish tradition sees that each person is created in the image of God, as we read in the book of Genesis, and therefore each face is the face of God. The Koran tells us to honor the progeny of Adam.

This is our prayer for our nation, that by the visitation of God our actions toward other human beings might be realigned with God's vision of them. The first step toward realigning our national conscience is openly and honestly accounting for U.S.-sponsored torture and the experimentation on human victims that bolstered torture practices. That is the only path to healing torture survivors. It is the only path to healing the soul of our nation. It is the only path to healing the soul of the world.

Rev. J. Edwin Bacon is the rector of All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena. Maher Hathout is senior advisor of the Muslim Public Affairs Council. Rabbi Joshua Levine-Grater is senior rabbi of Pasadena Jewish Temple and Center.

Read more:

Thursday, October 21, 2010

All Saints in the News: "Spirit Day" report on KNBC4

"Purple is the color of choice on Facebook today, as millions of users show their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender teens." --KNBC4
All Saints' Susan Russell was featured in the local NBC news last night in this segment on "Spirit Day" and wearing purple to take a stand against the bullying of LGBT youth.

View more news videos at:

Monday, October 18, 2010

THEATER CAMP: Serving Youth at Risk in Pasadena

All Saints Church is delighted to once again partner with Learning Works! Charter School for another week of Theatre Camp.

Learning Works! is an alternative school for kids in crisis and its groudbreaking Theatre Camp project is quite literally an embodiment of grace in action. This is the fourth time in two years All Saints has partnered in this work and it just gets better all the time.

All instructors are All Saints parishioners who are experts in theatre, performing arts, and entertainment. They graciously give their time for this week long program which positively impacts the lives of youth who have little to no previous experience working in “theatre.” Theatre Camp aims to provide youth with an opportunity to stimulate and use their creativity through the performing arts, while developing confidence, self-discipline and team building skills in a safe, nurturing and supportive environment.

We cordially invite you to attend the Theatre Camp Presentation on Saturday, October 23rd from 2:00 -3:30pm.

The presentation, themed “Shifting” will take place at the Lineage Performing Arts Center at 89 S. Fair Oaks, Pasadena, CA, 91105. Admission is free and light refreshments will be served.

Please RSVP to Juliana Serrano at or 626.583.2731 -- and help us get the word out about this exciting project serving youth at risk in the Pasadena area. Together we CAN make a difference!

BULLIED in the All Saints Rector's Forum THIS Sunday -- October 24!

The issue of LGBT youth bullying and suicide continues to lead the news and our hearts are breaking for those young lives damaged, broken and lost. Along with both faith and civic leaders across the nation, All Saints Church is committed to helping make a difference and both challenging and ending homophobic bullying, badgering and violence.

As we continue to explore how and where our voices can make a difference, mark you calendar now for SUNDAY, OCTOBER 24 in the All Saints Rector's Forum (10:15 a.m. PDT) for a forum with Bill Brummel, producer of the compelling new documentary "Bullied."

Every day, thousands of gay and lesbian students are verbally and physically harassed in schools. BULLIED centers on the powerful story of Jamie Nabozny, a gay teenage boy, tormented for years by classmates. Jamie fought back, not with his fists but in a courtroom. His historic federal case established that gay and lesbian students have a constitutional right to be free from harassment and bullying.
View the YouTube trailer for "Bullied:"


Plan to join us in the Rector's Forum on SUNDAY, OCTOBER 24 to hear from the filmmaker, see clips from the film and find out how YOU can be an agent of change to end the bullying of our at risk youth.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The All Saints Time Bank -- A new ministry at the right place at the right time!

This Sunday, one of the "featured ministries" at All Saints Church will be the brand new "All Saints Time Bank" -- an innovative project designed to build community through the giving and receiving of the gift of time.

From the Time Bank website:
All Saints Church is a place where people are encouraged to strive for health and wholeness in their lives and in the lives of their brothers and sisters everywhere. It is a place where we are committed to “making God’s love tangible 24/7.” The All Saints Church Time Bank takes these words to heart, making love tangible in our church community by the simple acts of giving and receiving. The All Saints Church Time Bank is an economy without money. It offers the All Saints community a way both to give and to receive time and talent as we respond to each others’ needs, building connections and community.
Here's a segment from a recent Good Morning America feature on the Time Bank concept:

And here's what some of the organizers of the All Saints Time Bank had to say in response to the question: What excites you about this new ministry?
“The Time Bank concept appealed to me enormously in its ability to make a real difference in others' lives one small deed at a time, creating extended family and deeper community connections. Meeting Edgar Cahn, the founder of Time Banks, sealed the deal for me. He's a true 60s activist, a visionary still seeking ways to promote peace and justice, and speaking a remarkable version of "All Saints-ian" language!” -- Lynne Tuite

I love that the Time Bank has it all – everything that All Saints stands for: it builds community, there is profound spirituality at the center of the message that we all have something valuable to contribute to the community, and it is an instrument of peace and justice in that it values an hour of labor equally, whether it’s legal advice or dog walking. The way God values all of us.” – Christina Honchell

“For or me it embraces the wonderful Spiritual Law of circulation...what is given is received...we are One! In this same flavor and what excites me the most is the gift of giving and receiving that has been made unique and special to our own community at All Saints. We "get to" love our neighbors! I might add that I feel a sense of growth and excitement, that Time Bank already has a life of it own. That more and more good will unfold from it as it expands and expands. Is God good or what?” – Martin Mcilvenna

"The ASC community incorporates such a diverse, talented, challenging group of people, and our contacts are often hurried, incidental, and without the substance they deserve. So many great people, so little chance to get to know them better! When I became acquainted with Time Banking, I saw it as the way to bridge the gap, to deepen the connections, to make that handshake at the kiss of peace an opening to reach out and join more closely with another on the same path, wherever we are.” – John Tuite
So come check it out! Visit the Time Bank webpages. Contact organizers for more information. Or visit the table on the lawn this Sunday -- October 17 -- to find out more.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Standing Room Only for launch of Islam 101

It was "standing room only" at All Saints Church in Pasadena on Tuesday night as over 100 parish and community members attended the first in a series of "ISLAM 101" presentations by leaders in the Southern California Muslim community.

Tuesday's opening night speaker, Dr. Laila al-Marayati was a powerful witness to the core Muslim values of peace, justice and compassion

"To be religious in the 21st century is to be interreligious," said All Saints rector Ed Bacon. "And to be faithfully interreligious is to seek greater understanding about other faiths. 'Islam 101' is an important addition to All Saints' long-time commitment to interfaith dialogue, education and collaboration. I was thrilled by this great turnout for our first session and excited that we need to arrange for a bigger room for next week to accommodate all who want to come and be transformed and by the teaching of our Muslim brothers and sisters!"

Upcoming Islam 101 speakers include:

Imam Jihad Turk. ■ Thursday, October 21st ■ 7:00 p.m. Imam Jihad Turk is the Director of Religious Affairs at the Islamic Center of Southern California. Born to a Muslim-Palestinian father and a Christian-American mother, He founded and currently serves as Co-Chair of the Christian-Muslim Consultative Group, comprised of major Christian and Muslim denominations and organizations intent on under-standing each other and working together on common goals. He is also a Religious Director at the University of Southern California, where he advises and serves the needs of the Muslim students on campus.

Dr. Maher Hathout. ■ Saturday, October 30th ■ 10:00 a.m. Dr. Maher Hathout — a leading spokesperson for the American Muslim community — is a retired physician best known for his tireless commitment to public service. He is an international figure who is highly regarded as a positive voice of Islam offering a unique and valuable perspective on national and international issues involving Muslims and a long time friend of All Saints Church. His articles and interviews haveappeared in such prominent newspapers as The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal &The Christian Science Monitor.

Saadia Khan. ■ date and time TBD ■ Saadia Khan serves as the Hate Crimes Prevention Coordinator and Census 2010 Coordinator for the Muslim Public Affairs Council. Saadia joined MPAC in the summer of 2007 as an intern in the Los Angeles office and after her internship joined the staff, helping plan the 1st Annual Youth Leadership Summit in LA and the 7th Annual Convention. MPAC is a long time justice ally of All Saints Church and Saadia is a compelling and dynamic speaker who has much to teach us about Islam’s core values of peace, justice and compassion.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

"It Gets Better" -- A Coming Out Day Message from Susan Russell

Here's the video we recorded Sunday that finally made it up online this morning. I can't think of a better way to honor this anniversary of Matthew Shepard's death than to recommit ourselves to "make it better" for LGBTQ youth at risk. God bless!

ISLAM 101 comes to All Saints Church

A message from All Saints' Rector, Ed Bacon:

To be religious in the 21st century is to be interreligious – and to be faithfully interreligious is to seek greater understanding about other faiths. Join me in learning more about Islam’s core values of peace, justice and compassion as we begin the Islam 101 adventure together Tuesday, October 12 at 7:00 p.m. in the Forum” -- Ed Bacon
All Saints Church has an ongoing commitment to God’s agenda of peace through true community -- and one of the ways we live out that commitment is through interfaith education, dialogue and collaboration. I would like for you to join me this Tuesday, October 12 at 7 p.m. in welcoming Dr. Laila Al-marayati to the All Saints Forum as the first speaker in our exciting Islam 101 series. Tuesday’s opening event will be followed by other great Muslims scholars, including Dr. Maher Hathout and Jihad Turk.

Dr. Al-marayati is a Palestinian-American physician, an Islamic activist and former presidential appointee to the US Commission on International Religious Freedom, where she served for two years after being appointed by President Bill Clinton. She is a person of a profound faith whom I admire tremendously. She certainly has much to offer us, not only in terms of how she uses the Koran in her daily life but also on how she applies its teaching in a way that is both inspirational and transformative.

Do not miss this important opportunity to study Islam as a religion of peace, justice and compassion. For more information contact Abel Lopez at 626.583.2748.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

White House Celebrates Archbishop Tutu as "Moral Titan"

With thanks to our friends over at Episcopal Cafe, here is a wonderful video moment with Archbishop Desmond Tutu (from The White House website) and the following "Statement by the President on the Retirement of Archbishop Desmond Tutu:"

It is with deep appreciation that I note Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s retirement from public life today on the occasion of his 79th birthday. This event invites us to celebrate his many accomplishments from which we have all benefited. For decades he has been a moral titan—a voice of principle, an unrelenting champion of justice, and a dedicated peacemaker. He played a pivotal role in his country’s struggle against apartheid and extraordinary example of pursuing a path to forgiveness and reconciliation in the new South Africa.

He has also been an outspoken voice for freedom and justice in countries across the globe; a staunch defender of the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons; and an advocate for treatment and prevention programs to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS. We will miss his insight and his activism, but will continue to learn from his example. We wish the Archbishop and his family happiness in the years ahead.

Office of the Press Secretary
October 7, 2010

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Celebrating the Signing of AB-12

This morning Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed AB12 in law. This important act will improve the lives of children and youth in California’s foster care system by extending transitional foster care services to eligible youth between 18 and 21 years of age. [photo: Juliana Serrano]

“Our foster care youth deserve every opportunity to succeed in life, and extending foster benefits and services through age 21 will help better equip them with the necessary tools,” said Governor Schwarzenegger. “AB 12 will ensure our foster youth have access to important resources as they transition into adulthood. I applaud Assemblymembers Bass and Beall for working across the aisle and getting this important legislation passed.”
All Saints staffer and Director of the Office for Creative Connections Juliana Serrano was on hand for the signing this morning at Vista Del Mar Child & Family Services in Los Angeles. This important legislation was supported by the All Saints Foster Care Project. It was also one of our "Faith in Action" Sunday-Actions-on-the-Lawn -- an action that generated over 25% of the letters to the governor supporting the bill.

Congratulations to all who worked so hard to pass this much-needed legislation that will help make love tangible to California's foster children!

For more information on the All Saints Church Foster Care Project visit their website or send an email here.