Week of 11/13 Youth Update

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Week of 11/13 Youth Update

A Message from the Rector -- Staff Transition

Dear Families-

As many of you know, Isaac Ruelas, our Associate Youth Minister and Multiculturalism Coordinator has been away on a leave of absence for the past six weeks. During this time away, Isaac has discerned that it is time for them (Isaac’s preferred pronouns are they/them/their) to wrap up their work at All Saints so that they can pursue new ways in which they hear God directing them in their professional life. We are grateful that Isaac has had the opportunity to work out their calling here at All Saints for the past seven years, and I know that we will all miss them greatly.

Isaac will return to the office on Monday, December 4th, and his last day will be Sunday, December 31st. We are already planning opportunities for families to say goodbye, and even though Isaac’s leaving is a loss for us, I am confident that they will continue to be a powerful voice for youth in our community and beyond.

Isaac sends their love to you all, and is looking forward to reconnecting with each of you in the weeks ahead.

Con el amor de Cristo,

Mike


Weekly Highlights:

Wednesday Night Youth Group -- Jr. High -- 11/15/2017

This Wednesday Night we will spend time exploring what it means to live a thankful life, especially in the midst of all the different cultural narratives that we have been exposed to and have internalized. As usual, we'll spend some time playing games and listening to each other in small groups, closing out our time together with prayer.

Calendar

Please click on the calendar below to check out additional activities, including who's up to acolyte this upcoming Sunday.

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What is the Kingdom of Heaven?

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What is the Kingdom of Heaven?

The gospel appointed for this upcoming Sunday is Matthew 25, chapters 1-13, the parable of the ten bridesmaids. On the face of it, it's not an overly complicated text--its main point is succinctly summed up in the phrase, "Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour." The hour, traditionally, is an eschatological reflection on Jesus' return, post resurrection.

And yet, its placement in the text is entirely theological, and a quick glance at the surrounding parables gives you a glimpse into Jesus' larger point. The preceding parable is the story of the master who gives his servants authority over his household, and to whom the master handsomely rewards the servants who manage the household well and punishes the servants who waste the responsibilities given to them.

The parable that directly follows is the story of the master who picks three servants and gives to each of them different levels of responsibility for managing his wealth, and then goes away. Upon his return, he finds that two of the servants have invested the wealth that was given to them and made a profit--he rewards them. The third does the complete opposite--he hides the wealth and makes no return on the investment--the master punishes him.

All three of the parables are evocative in many ways, but I'd like to highlight two thoughts that relate to this idea of the Kingdom of Heaven. The first idea is that the Kingdom of Heaven is already present among us--the servants have actual work to do in the here and now--it's not simply enough to wait for some future moment in which the Kingdom of Heaven arrives through some supernatural means.

The second thought is that there is a better "here and now", and that part of our job (along with God) is to be working towards bringing that more heavenly Kingdom, that kingdom of love, compassion, and inclusion, to this world which so desperately  needs it.

In reflecting on the tragedy that unfolded in Texas last Sunday, we thought it would be a good and healing thing to begin to work towards the realization of that better Kingdom of Heaven. This Sunday, November 12th, all students in K - 5 will be given the opportunity to work on an art project that will be sent to the victims of the shooting in Texas. Students in middle school and senior high will have an opportunity to write notes that will be included in a larger package sent from the parish as a part of our action for the morning.

In light of the many deep tragedies in our world today, how will you respond to God's call to be involved in the bringing about of a better Kingdom of Heaven?

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Week of 11/6 Youth Update

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Week of 11/6 Youth Update

Weekly Highlights:

Wednesday Night Youth Group -- Jr. High -- 11/08/2017

This Wednesday we'll be continuing in our series on the book of James, specifically looking at chapter 2, verses 1-7. In these verses, James challenges us to "make no preferences among ourselves," especially as it relates to those who have power and those who do not have power. As usual, we'll spend some time playing games and listening to each other in small groups, closing out our time together with prayer.

Giving Event @ The Rectory

I'm delighted to share that the CYF and Giving departments have worked together to offer a Giving Event that is not only open to the entire parish, but is also family friendly as well. Age appropriate activities will be offered for children and youth throughout the evening. The event begins at 5:30 and will be wrapped up by 7:00 (with the exception of Not So Bored Game Night, which will continue until 8 pm -- please see the note below.)

If you're planning on attending, please send us an email to let us know.

Not So Bored Game Night -- SPECIAL UPDATE

Please see the calendar event below for a special update about our November Not So Bored Game Night.

Calendar

Please click on the calendar below to check out additional activities, including who's up to acolyte this upcoming Sunday.

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Week of 10/30 Youth Update

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Week of 10/30 Youth Update

Weekly Highlights:

Wednesday Night Youth Group -- Jr. High -- 11/01/2017

This Wednesday we'll be continuing in our series on the book of James, specifically looking at chapter 1, verses 22-27. We'll be exploring the radical idea of what it means to put our faith into action, or, in the words of the book of James, how to be "doers who act." As usual, we'll spend some time playing games and listening to each other in small groups, closing out our time together with prayer.

Wednesday Night Youth Group --Sr. High -- 11/01/2017

This Wednesday we’ll be continuing our series, “Music is All We Got”, by listening to the 1998 album “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.” Head to youtube if you’d like to check the album out ahead of time. We’ll look back at what was going on in 1998, listen to the album together, and then have discussions in small groups.

All education and formation activities will NOT meet this Sunday due to All Saints Sunday.

This includes Godly Play (K - 5), The Journey for Jr. & Sr. High, and both Parent Culture groups. Our normal Sunday schedule will resume on Sunday, November 12th.

A special family Eucharist will be held this Sunday at the 9 am service. Please contact Kelly for additional details.


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Week of 10/23 Youth Update

Halloween Party!

Wednesday Night Youth Group -- Middle School & Senior HIgh -- 10/25/2017

This Wednesday we'll have our annual Halloween party! We'll begin with a frightfully fun dinner at 6:30 pm, hosted by Parish Celebrations. Afterwards, the fun will continue in the Learning Center with games, crafts, a costume contest, and more fun surprises. Oh, and we'll have some candy too...

Calendar

Please click on the calendar below to check out our Sunday morning activities, including who's up to acolyte!

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Week of 10/16 Youth Update

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Week of 10/16 Youth Update

Weekly Highlights:

Wednesday Night Youth Group -- Jr. High -- 10/18/2017

This Wednesday we'll be continuing in our series on the book of James, specifically looking at chapter 1, verses 17-21. A highlight of this section is James' encouragement to "speak slowly" and to be "slow to anger." We'll consider how those words can not only be applied in our lives, but how we see them being applied (or not being applied) in the many larger, complex issues we face today in our society.


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#StopTheHate: Next Steps

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#StopTheHate: Next Steps

The image on the front page of the youth website is from a couple of years ago, when our youth participated in a #BlackLivesMatter march here in Pasadena. Since then, tragically, it seems that not much has changed, and so this past Sunday we found ourselves marching again, this time at the end of the 9:00 am liturgy. Normally, at the end of a service, the first cross and torches lead the chancel party out, and then church is done. This Sunday, though, was different. 

Instead, the first cross and torches led the people out--and not just out the door. Nearly 700 members of the parish processed out of the church, onto the sidewalk, and then around the block in order to pray with our feet and add our voices to the chorus crying out for an end to the fear, racism, and violence that has gripped our nation. The procession was led by 21 acolytes and numerous other youth carrying signs of peace, signs calling for an end to gun violence, and signs marking the names of those whose lives have been cut short because of the color of their skin. 

After the service had concluded, some began to ask what the next steps are--to that end, Susan Russell has published an excellent blog with resources aimed at helping everyone get educated about the realities that communities of color live with every day and the ways in which allies can get involved in the work in a helpful and productive fashion. Please check the blog out here.

The youth of All Saints are in it for the long haul--we'll continue to be a place that is loving, inclusive, and safe for everyone, and we'll strive to be a prophetic and radical voice of God's love and justice for all people, all the time.

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Changing the Narrative: Faith & Science

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Changing the Narrative: Faith & Science

We have been taught to believe that faith and science are enemies and sadly, many people have bought into that story. By uncritically accepting that binary narrative, we have created a toxic culture that demonizes and rejects any idea or feeling perceived as "other."

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Youth Work: Finding a new way

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Youth Work: Finding a new way

One of the more interesting parts about working at a progressive, Christian church that embraces the multi-cultural reality of the pluralistic world that we live in is that there aren’t a ton of places to go to see how other youth ministers are doing it.

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A new youth website

We realized a while ago that it was time for a new youth website, something that reflects the dynamic, exciting spirit of the youth of All Saints. So, we hope you like our new layout...let us know what you think!

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