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CSU Leaders Take to the Pulpit in Super Sunday Events

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California State University officials will be speaking at Super Sunday events at more than 100 predominantly African American churches throughout the state in February.

The events reaching more than 100,000 churchgoers are part of CSU's outreach to educate students and families about the requirements to successfully enter college and obtain a degree. Participants also receive information about financial aid and the CSUMentor.edu web site that provides the tools to plan and apply to a CSU campus.

"Super Sunday is an opportunity to highlight the value of receiving a college degree," said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed. "Nearly eight in 10 future job openings in the U.S. will require postsecondary education. We want to make sure that each year more African American students graduate from college and are able to compete for these jobs."

After the church service, parents and students will have the opportunity to talk to CSU representatives and receive the How To Get To College poster -- a practical guide about how to prepare for college beginning in the 6th and 7th grades. The guide, available in several languages, in print and electronic form, provides the list of classes that students need to take grade by grade to qualify for admission to the CSU. It also provides tips for parents and mentors to help students succeed.

The 2011 Super Sunday events will take place as follows: Feb. 13, in Bakersfield, Chancellor Reed will speak at the 11 a.m. service at St. John Missionary Baptist Church. Events also will take place at churches in Antioch, Hayward, Newark, Pittsburg, Temecula and San Bernardino.

Feb. 20, events will take place at Northern California churches in Oakland, Richmond, Berkeley, Hayward, Antioch, San Pablo, Vallejo, Freemont, San Francisco, San Jose, Fresno, Sacramento, Seaside, Milpitas, San Mateo, El Cerrito, Fairfield, Sun Village and Bakersfield. In Southern California, there will be events in Carson and Riverside and Chancellor Reed will speak in Irvine at Christ Our Redeemer AME, at 10:30 a.m.

Feb. 27, services will take place at Southern California churches in Long Beach, Los Angeles, Riverside, Inglewood, Irvine, Yorba Linda, Gardena, Carson, Corona, San Bernardino, Pasadena, Oxnard, Compton, Temecula, Norwalk, Rancho Dominguez, Fontana, Santa Ana and Oceanside.

The annual Super Sunday event is produced by the CSU African American Initiative -- a partnership between CSU campuses and African American religious leaders with the goal of increasing college going rates among African American students.

The initiative is led by Chancellor Reed and engages CSU Trustees, campus presidents, executives and staff.

For more information about the list of participating churches, times of service and locations, go to the Super Sunday website.

Visit the CSU External Relations website to learn more about the CSU African American Initiative and other community initiatives and partnerships to address college access for underserved communities.

St. Francis Episcopal Church Welcomes A New Priest

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Members of St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church on Sterling Avenue in San Bernardino recently welcomed a new priest, a name change and a new service time.

The church, a fixture in the San Bernardino community since the early 1960s, is now known as the St. Francis Episcopal Mission Outreach Center, to highlight its community garden and reflect a renewed focus on outreach to its surrounding neighborhood and area, according to Jim Smith, a member of the church’s governing board.

The congregation also welcomed on Jan. 16 the Rev. Patricia McCaughan, who will preside over the congregation’s weekly Sunday worship services, now held at 10:00 a.m.

With the planting season approaching, the public is invited to participate in the community garden, located on the church grounds at 2855 Sterling Avenue, said McCaughan.

“We are hoping to expand the garden to include those interested in growing vegetables and other crops,” said McCaughan.

“We will be offering classes on such varied topics as gardening, healthy meals as well as other health-related activities and events and we welcome community involvement,” she added.

McCaughan is no stranger to St. Francis. She served as priest-in-charge of the congregation from 1998 to 2001 and described her recent return as “a wonderful homecoming.”

“St. Francis was the first congregation I served when I moved to California in 1998,” she recalled. “Almost immediately we became family and we still are,” she said. “This is a lovely group of welcoming, wonderful people who are serious about their faith and about serving others. It’s an honor and privilege to return to serve here.”

A native of Detroit, Michigan, McCaughan moved to California in 1998.

She is also a journalist, writing feature and news stories for both the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles and for the Episcopal News Service of the Episcopal Church, which represents more than 2 million members in 22 countries, including the United States. The Episcopal Church is part of the Anglican Communion, which has an estimated 80 million members worldwide.

McCaughan said she left St. Francis in 2001 when she and her husband, the Rev. Keith Yamamoto, responded to calls to Episcopal parishes in Orange County. They returned to the Inland Empire in Jan. 2009 after Yamamoto was called as rector of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Upland.

“We’re so happy to be back,” McCaughan said. “We at the St. Francis Episcopal Mission Outreach Center have deep roots in this community. We welcome our new growth and we look forward to continuing our tradition of worship, service and hospitality.”

Feb. 9 King Celebration At Claremont To Feature Shayne L. Lee

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Dr. Shayne L. Lee, renowned author, commentator, and associate professor of sociology at Tulane University, New Orleans, is the 2011 Martin Luther King, Jr., lecturer at Claremont School of Theology. His subject: The Shepherd’s Sling: Private and Public Service. The annual event is scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 9, at 7 p.m. in Mudd Theater on the School’s campus.

A prominent interpreter of contemporary American religion and culture, Lee has appeared on CNN and Good Morning America, and offered expert commentary in the New York Times, Washington Post, U.S.A. Today, The Atlantic, and various other periodicals.

“Dr. Lee is a dynamic speaker and innovative thinker who is sure to challenge us with his insights,” says Rev. Dr. Jerry D. Campbell, president of the School. “We are privileged for him to contribute to the legacy of this remarkable event at Claremont.”

Lee’s first book, T.D. Jakes: America’s New Preacher (NYU Press, 2005), analyzes the rise of a prominent African American spiritual leader as a metaphor for changes in the Black church and contemporary American religion. His second book, Holy Mavericks: Evangelical Innovators and the Spiritual Marketplace (NYU Press 2009) uses theory of religious economy to study the appeal of celebrity preachers. His latest book, Erotic Revolutionaries: Black Women, Sexuality, and Popular Culture (2010) navigates the uncharted spaces where social conventions, third-wave feminism, and black popular culture collide to locate a new site for sexuality studies that is theoretically innovative, politically subversive, and stylistically chic. He is currently working on a national study of Black clergywomen.

Claremont’s King Day Celebration also includes a special worship service at 10:30 a.m. in Kresge Chapel featuring Claremont alumnus Rev. Dr. Cecil L. “Chip” Murray (Rel.D., 1964), civic leader and retired Pastor of First AME Church, Los Angeles.

Prior to the lecture by Lee, the annual MLK dinner will be held at 5:30 p.m. in Haddon Conference Center. Advanced reservations for the dinner are required. To reserve, please email PASA@cst.edu or call Janis Brown at (909) 447-6335.

Online reservations will be available soon at www.cst.edu.

Kaiser Permanente Riverside Honors MLK Legacy with Day of Service and Giving

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Kaiser Permanente, Riverside employees volunteered their time at the Second Harvest Food Bank in Riverside on Saturday, January 15 and Monday, January 17.

The employees and their family members, helped to sort thousands of pounds of food and other items for distribution to those in need. The medical center also hosted a coat drive and collected over 150 gently used coats and jackets for donation to homeless shelters in the Riverside area.

Healthy communities and a healthy environment are critical to individual health and wellness.

The outstanding efforts of the employees help celebrate the contributions of Dr. King, and promote the spirit and generosity of community volunteerism.

31st Annual SB Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Prayer Breakfast

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The IECAAC (Inland Empire Concerned African American Churches) will celebrate Dr. King’s Legacy with the theme “Dream the Plan.” at the 31st year celebration of the MLK Prayer Breakfast of San Bernardino on January 17, beginning at 7:30 a.m. at the Inghram Community Center, 2050 N. Mt. Vernon Ave., San Bernardino. The celebration will include the presentation of several special awards to some of our local educators, politicians and others in community service who have performed special services benefiting the residents of San Bernardino.

The awards include the “Gertrude Whetzel Award” which is so named to honor Ms. Whetzel. Ms Whetzel was very instrumental in raising the money to erect the statue of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. that stands in front of the San Bernardino City Hall.

Gertrude Whetzel – Terrance Stone-CEO of Young Visionaries ; Beyond the Boundaries – Linda Jackson of NID; Public Service – Chief Keith Kilmer – Cief San Bernardino City Police Department Trail Blazer – Jennifer Vaughn-Blakely- CEO of Sundance Consultant Services Community Service - Clyde Williams- Outreach and Recruitment Coordinator –Valley College Marco Cota – Dean of Counseling and Matriculation – Valley College Patriot- James Ramos – Chairman of San Manuel Mission Band Indians The annual breakfast will include variety of activities as well as a short message of encouragement, all in honor of Dr. King’s Legacy.

Immediately following the breakfast, attendees and the general public are invited to the San Bernardino City Hall for additional presentations, ending with the traditional walk around the MLK Statue. San Bernardino City Hall is at 300 North D. Street.

Tickets are available at: T. Hughes Temple Outreach Community Center - 1777 W. Baseline Ave- (909)383- 9588; St. Paul's A.M.E. Church - 1355 W. 21st - (909) 887-1718; Ecclesia Christian Fellowship - 1314 E. date Street, S.B. 92404- (909)- 881-5551.

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BVN National News Wire