The Grace Chimes – This Month’s Issue

February 2017

Dear Reader,

Hello friends!

Hope you can keep yourselves warm and cozy these winter days.

During the month of February we will restart Sunday School for adults. Sundays at 9:45am in the Walters room, Horacio Da Valle will resume teaching the Bible. All are welcome to participate.

During February, we will also begin new discipleship classes for all of you who are new to the church, and spiritual development classes for those of you who have been walking with Christ for much longer. Please take advantage of these opportunities to get spiritually fed and grow in your faith.

The Grace Staff

Birthdays This Month

Margaret Knoth          2/05
Bill Brooks                    2/06
Henry Jensen              2/13
John Rogers                 2/13
Celinda Miranda         2/14
Christian Simonsen   2/23
Lucille Boone               2/25
Linda Sheppard          2/27

Rev. Dr. Liliana Da Valle

Grace Living

February is the month of love and friendship. How wonderful it is to celebrate the closeness of those who warm your heart through their support and care! We are fortunate to have a church family that cares for us, and family and friends who embrace and bless us with their love.

However, sometimes we fail to enjoy life’s good stuff because our hearts are blocked. No, I’m not talking about cholesterol; I’m talking about emotional blockage. I have seen this in persons with a history of abuse, loss, or depression. They have a hard time seeing the forest because a tree blocks their view.

These days, I believe more people are experiencing blockage by the news. It is hard to rejoice in the blessings when you feel that tragedy is looming over. When you feel your civil liberties are in danger, when you’re afraid for your neighbors, or when you feel all the values you stand for are been crushed. We live in difficult times; it seems that all the social strides we’ve made over the years are being bulldozed and we are going back in time.

As a woman, and as a woman of color, I feel that I cannot trust this country to do what is right anymore. Powerful people are trying to go backwards and many are following: no more women’s rights over their reproductive system, no more appreciation for multiculturalism and pluralism, no more protection of the planet and solutions to climate change. What will happen? How far are we going to go? It’s hard to tell.

I’ve been praying the wrong prayers lately: Lord, don’t let Trump become our president; Lord, make Congress reject his nominees; Lord, let all this be just a bad nightmare. But it looks like the Lord is not honoring that kind of prayer. So, I’ve changed my way of praying. Now I pray for me. Lord, change my heart so it’s stronger; Lord, give me endurance and the wisdom to resist peacefully; Lord, strengthen me so I can keep showing your love to the world.

What do you say? Would you like to pray like me? Join me in coming to God’s throne and receive the power to survive and the grace to keep loving. One of the greatest forms of resistance during difficult times is joy; keep smiling, keep believing, keep celebrating. Those in power may be able to take us backwards and undo our social progress, but they cannot take away our faith and hope that are based on knowing that God is in control. Our God is more powerful than the president of the USA and all the kings of this world!

Community of Grace

January 2017 GBC Leadership Minutes

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Church Moderator – Celaine Called to Order at 6:35pm

Opening Prayer – Rev. Liliana

Present: Liliana DaValle, CeCe Krois, Dennis Glover, Debi Simonsen,  Diana Ferguson, Nathan Henning, Daniil Reouk

Absent: Brad Handshy, Phil Mastracola, Marge Burns, Rosa Guererro, Bill Brooks,

Last Month’s Minutes – Confirming as Corrected

Treasurer’s Report – Bill/Nathan

Congregational giving.$99,787, Budget $108,000,Total Income $373,317, Budget $356,240,Total expenses $397,898. Budget $364,839.  Net Income,$(-24,581) Budget($-8,599).

  • Shower Program finances

Pastor’s Report – Rev. Liliana

  • City grant?
  • Progress report on establishing a 501c(3) for GBC, Liliana is pursuing.
  • HMNA meeting in Hicks Room with representatives from GCC Feb 9, 2017 @7pm
  • Renita Fleming and Michael O’Connell for membership

Task Force Report – CeCe/Dennis/Bill/Phil/Liliana

  • Progress on new boundary fence for Homeless Camp site
  • No Winter Emergency Shelter staff to have access to church office keys nor access to office itself; store personal items elsewhere such as outside lockers
  • Kitchen bathroom privileges for homeless revoked; bathroom given back to ladies for their usage (key?)
  • Gym storage closet cleaned out; items dumped; full of mice which were encroaching once again on kitchen
  • Phil to provide by tomorrow (Friday) a refrigerator for the Winter Emergency Shelter usage
  • Task Force meeting tomorrow (Friday) at 10:30 a.m. Postponed to Friday January 27 at 10:30am

Associate Pastor’s Report – Nathan

  • Report on apartment rent, still in arrears
  • Report on GCC move out; rent payment
  • Church cat report

Campus Ministry Report – Mike

Ministry Team Reports:

Administration – Bill

  • Roof and Solar Panels progression reports, Waiting on Armstrong to do work. Weather delays
  • Kitchen water heater replacement has been done. It is undersized, It can only get the hot water to 95degrees F. Live with it for a while

Community Life – Rosa/Jason

  • Fellowship
  • Upcoming events, Calendar in annual reports

Mission & Outreach

Raised $245 for RMMO in December

Spiritual Formation

Peace Vigil every Friday at Fourth St and San Fernando

Women’s March, 11am at Cesar Chavez Park to City Hall

Worship – Brad

Deacons – Marge

Old Business: None

New Business:

  • Suspend rules for one year on trial bases where leadership members must be church members; instead allow regular attendees to also be leaders. Tabled for another time
  • Daniil becomes Treasurer, Bill is Chair Admin, Phil is Mission and Outreach, Debi is Spiritual Formation Diana is a team member, Stephen Riddle is Worship, Rosa is Community Life, Jessica Brooks is CSRC, Divya is Nominating Committee

Next Meetings:

  • Annual Business Meeting & Pot Luck, January 29, 2017

Closing Prayer – Nathan Closed the meeting with Prayer at 7:45pm

Respectfully submitted

Dennis A. Glover

GBC Church Clerk


GBC Annual Meeting

Grace Baptist Church held its annual meeting on Sunday, January 29th after the church service. We barely had a quorum, but we were able to conduct the meeting. If you are a member, we need you to show up occasionally, at least, please. We miss you.

Our Pastor gave us an update on all the many initiatives we have going on at the church. From our Cold Weather Shelter and Shower Program, to community and civic engagement, Grace continues to be a leader in our community for justice and compassion. In the absence of our Treasurer, the Associate Pastor gave an update on the finances which, as always, are precarious. We will need to make some course adjustments in the coming year in order to remain financially afloat.  In fact, we do not have a budget approved yet for 2017.

The new members of the Leadership Committee were voted on and approved. Thank you for everyone who to serves in any capacity at GBC, but we are especially grateful to the church leaders to do so much and work so hard (often wearing more than one hat).

We welcomed three new members: Renita Flemming, Michael O’Connell, and Decata Nixon

Thank you to the Community Care team who organized the potluck and provided another great meal for our church members and homeless friends.

We look forward to a blessed and successful 2017!


GBC Annual Business Meeting Minutes

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Church Moderator – Celaine (Call to Order) – 23 members present. 1 pm.

Opening Prayer – Rev. Horacio

Fall 2016 Business Meeting’s Minutes – Stephen Minutes stand as read

Treasurer’s Report – Bill/Nathan

(Nathan) Congregational giving up @ 3%, Expenses up 62%. First major repair was the roof– have received about 92% of the funds needed.

On page 26(annual report), rental income came up for last year.  On page 29(annual report), our net ordinary income is negative $22,000. The other income/expense is -$9,242. Net loss for the year -31,500.  We voted on a budget, but expected money from the city which we may not receive, so we need a new budget.

We have not yet received notice from the city that they are vacating the Community Center.  The next contract is due at the end of June.

We will know more by the spring meeting which will be on May 21.

Pastor’s Report – Rev. Liliana:  there is a long report in the annual report.

  • GCC has vacated basement but still paying rent (They rent the blue house, the room upstairs, and a storage area.) The community here is concerned about the services not being available. Pray, Pray
  • Update on Winter Emergency Shelter for Houseless (Gym); hiring of night security we are at full capacity. We are fully staffed, have a security guard, night monitors, and people cleaning in the morning. Friday night the Victory Outreach event was fabulous, about 120 persons attended
  • Filing for 501c3 status in order to receive donations from city and foundations; cost to file $695 (using an expert). This will be a new non-religious corporation. We are looking for a fiscal conduit for governmental funds
  • Arranging for the sheltering of homeless college students in upstairs Art Room via Rev. Kathey Crowe and Mike Daggett the Campus Chaplain. (The Art Room upstairs)
  • Establishing collaborative with the HMNA; meeting Feb. 9 at 7 p.m. in Hick’s Room Horace Mann Neighborhood Association, a group of neighbors who are actually listening, and not screaming
  • Working on 2 new classes – one for leaders and one for new members/visitors.Classes on Tuesday, discipleship classes for those new to the walk with Jesus.The leaders need a class—they work, work, work, and need to do some receiving

Old Business:

  • Update on roof repairs and solar panel installation – Sanctuary roof is complete, the solar panel installation is behind schedule because the vendor is busy with other customers

New Business:

  • Vote on Church Officers and Committee Leaders for 2017 – passed, officers in place
  • Vote on church membership for Renita Fleming and Michael O’Connell, DeCada Nixon – passed unanimously
  • Distribution of Annual Reports; events calendar included
  • Distribution of new church phone directory

Annual Parking Lot BBQ and Pot Luck Picnic, April 30, 2017

Spring Business Meeting and Pot Luck, Sunday, May 21, 2017

Closing Prayer – Nathan

Meeting Adjourned – Celaine at 1:35

Note Taker – Stephen Riddle


The Choral Project –
A Concert to Support Homeless Causes

STREET REQUIEM is an absolutely beautiful, moving, touching, thought-provoking, and inspirational work.  And to have the extraordinary talents of Frederica von Stade, Juanita Harris, and the San Jose Chamber Orchestra with us to present these performances in San Jose and Santa Cruz is truly special. We are truly honored to be able to perform the Silicon Valley premiere this exciting new work, and to raise additional awareness of the homeless plight in our communities.

I am deeply appreciative of the individual sacrifices that are made by people who are dealing with the issues of homelessness on a daily basis … both staff members of various churches and organizations, and the numerous volunteers who are involved. I know you are leading the effort to support the homeless community through your work Grace Baptist Church in San Jose, and in recognition of your commitment to help the under-served, we are pleased to offer the following:

For tickets, please visit:

From there one can reach the Brown Paper Tickets page where tickets can be purchased.  At the section where it asks for a “code,” enter CASMEC for a 20% discount

Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph
Feb 15, 2017 at 07:30 pm – 09:00 pm (Wed)

Peace United Church of Christ in Santa Cruz
Feb 18, 2017 at 04:00 pm – 05:30 pm (Sat)


CIC Ministries’ Art and Spirit Inmate Creation Comes to Grace Baptist
By Rev. Louann Roberts, CIC Ministries Chaplain in the Santa Clara County jails and Grace Baptist member

Jail is a lonely and difficult place. Our chaplaincy has been blessed to have a group of artists come to some of the most difficult units in the jails, to guide inmates in creating beauty.

Art is often done in a solitary way. Distinctive energy is generated when people work together to create art.This synergy changes our perceptions of who we are and how we communicate, collaborate, negotiate and compromise. Creating in the presence of others taps into healing factors beyond those found within oneself. This creative process allows incarcerated people to “dig deep” and embeds a sense of accomplishment, pride, and hope. Inmates are able to share life’s challenges, find they are valued by others, and become part of a greater whole.

When people are put in jail, they become invisible. They will, however, ultimately be part of the fabric of every community. By tapping into their creative side, they become aware of their positive assets. Having these inner resources to draw upon provides ways to better cope with their current or future situations. The inmates themselves have noted that community art has encouraged cooperation, unity and peace within the facility.

This program, the Art and Spirit Ministry, provides an opportunity for inmates to connect with their spiritual journey through the creative arts, encourages refocusing and introspection by enriching the spiritual and creative lives of the incarcerated. Art is the vehicle that offers opportunities to learn skills necessary for life within and outside of jail. The return of these inmates to the community calls us to provide programs which demonstrate other, more spiritual and loving ways to live.

The response to the art has been amazing- from the inmates, the administration and the community. In the past 3 years, we have had exhibits of their work at the Hall of Justice, Government Center, Valley Medical Center, San Jose Textile Museum and Ameriprise Investment Services. Churches have borrowed art pieces as well. Attendees at these venues expressed a new appreciation and understanding of who is incarcerated and their humanity, as well as the issues in the criminal justice system.

Participation in the community creative process:

  • Affects self-esteem and general outlook
  • Offers opportunities to develop self-discipline, concentration and problem-solving skills
  • Fosters cooperation, kindness, and supportive generosity among diverse groups of people
  • Teaches techniques and behaviors to help cope with their current reality, including journaling, breath prayers and poetry
  • Develops community skills, such as working in teams and communicating effectively, both in writing and verbally
  • Helps inmates understand their inherent value and care about their neighbors — pivotal in changing lives
  • Instills belief in the possibility of transformation

If you are interested in being a part of this ministry or supporting it in any way, please contact:

Rev. Louann Roberts 408-957-5822,


GBC Events for 2017

Parking Lot BBQ Picnic, Sunday, April 30, 2017

Spring Business Meeting & Pot Luck, Sunday, May 21, 2017

Biennial in Portland. June 30-July 2, 2017

Fall Business Meeting & Pot Luck, Sunday, September 24, 2017

Evergreen Annual Conference, October 6-7, 2017

Annual GBC Retreat, October 27-29, 2017

Annual GBC Thanksgiving Dinner, Sunday, November 19, 2017

(Setup on Saturday, November 18 at 10 a.m.)

Annual Coat & Soup Giveaway, Saturday, December 9, 2017

(Setup on Friday evening, December 8 at 6 p.m.)


Weekly Bible Studies and Small Groups

Sunday School – 9:45am                                     (Walters Room)

Grace Baptist Church Information

Sunday Worship at 11am

(child care is available)

Bible Studies 9:45am

(Walters Room)

The Lighthouse

College and Young Adult service
Sunday’s at 7pm (on hold)


Senior Pastor
Rev. Dr. Liliana Da Valle

Associate Pastor

Nathan Brittsan

Office Phone


Mon – Fri 10:00am – 3:00pm

We accept submissions for The Grace Chimes.  The deadline for submissions is the 15th of each month to be included in the upcoming issue.  Editor reserves the right to edit for content and space.

Grace Baptist Church is a member of Evergreen Association of American Baptists and American Baptist Churches USA

we are a welcoming and affirming congregation