Chapel Chat

May 28,2020

FROM PASTOR JAMES: As we think, and hope, and dream about worshipping in-person again, it is clear that when we do, we’ll all need to wear face masks.  I’m sure many of you have already bought or made masks for going out to do essential errands. Some of us may not have masks yet. 

I know we have some very talented people in our congregation who are excellent at sewing and making wonderful things from cloth and I wonder if some of you would be willing to make masks for the Chapel? These masks would be available for people who don’t have one yet, folks who may have forgotten theirs, and visitors who may not know that a mask will be required. There are lots of patterns and instructions online to help. Here’s a link to The Crafty Quilter: and here’s another from Joann:  Of course, we will have to give them to people who need them so they can wash them as required. This would surely be a blessing and a very generous act of love! Please let me know if this idea appeals to you and if you have any questions or concerns. Thank You!

Because sometimes, once is not enough…we want to extend another huge ‘Thank You!’ to Greg Brown and his friend Brandon for all their work cleaning up the yard and grounds around the Chapel. We hear it looks absolutely beautiful. If you’d like to contact Greg for any reason, he invites you to use his email: gregory.walton.brown@gmail.comook

Many people think of the churches in the Protestant tradition as being very rational and even “heady”. In the midst of the COVID pandemic and all the social change that is coming from it, I think the world is learning that there is more “there there” than we normally acknowledge. I’ve personally been reading about mindfulness practices and noticed that the UCC is offering a weekly webinar on Mysticism and Mindfulness. It’s called “Thursdays for the Soul” and the weekly topics are wide-ranging, focused on the spirituality and care of people.  Prayer, worship, music, psalm readings, or compassionate teaching are included. The next webinar is on Thursday, Jun 4, 2020 at 12:30 PM in our (PDST) time zone.  Here’s a handy link for more information and registration:

Important Zoom Notice: If you haven’t done this already, please begin updating your Zoom to version 5.0 now. After May 30, 2020, all Zoom users on older versions will experience a forced upgrade when trying to join a Zoom meeting which will cause a delay. To update your Zoom app, please visit

As will be true for a while yet, worship this Sunday will be on Zoom.  My intention again this week is to send the bulletin to you two ways. One is on a regular page (maybe two sides or two pages) much like our usual bulletin. The other will be the larger format that you can easily read from a tablet or phone as we’ve had the past few weeks. Our Sunday worship Zoom link is:

If you need them, the meeting ID is 448 389 019

and the password is 646544

(These should be the same as last Sunday)

Our Zoom social hour still seems to be working well for several people so as long as we have interest, let’s keep meeting. We’ll do it again tonight (Thursday, May 28th) at 7:00.  This is a great chance to get your Zoom settings “tuned up” for Sunday worship and to get comfortable with the whole experience. Here’s the link:  Hope to see you there!

If you need them, the meeting ID is: 822 0654 5701 and the password is: 016303.

Of course, if you have any questions along the way, you can always reach me at the SVC phone number: 530-581-4011 and I’ll be happy to help!

Here’s an idea: please consider – if it’s possible – tithing 10% of your stimulus check to SVC. If enough people did this, we could repay the money we borrowed from the Poulsen Fund and re-establish our checking balance to make the treasurer’s job a bit less stressful. If you can do this, we thank you! If not, we still wish you all God’s blessings in your life!

N.B. If anyone would like to read the scripture this Sunday, please let me know.

And many thanks to Barbara Patterson for her beautiful reading on the 10th!

UPDATE – GISELA’S MEMORIAL SERVICE: We’ve re-scheduled Gisela’s service to Saturday, September 26th at 11:00 am hoping that California will be in Phase 3 of the re-opening process. This service will likely be outdoors so we can spread out, have bountiful fresh air, and enjoy our deck and back yard at the chapel. Like everything else, even this new date is subject to change based on developments of the Covid-19 restrictions and recommendations.

♥  ♥  ♥  ♥

PRAYERS: Please continue your prayers for; Bill and Susie Steele, Emily Miller, Sharon Poland, Diane Morrison, Gail and Bob Okano, Friends and Family of Gisela Steiner, Peggy Wiseman, Grace and Ted Norgard, Hannah Halvorsen, Denise Cordova, and Greg’s mom, Linda. Thank you!


AA Thursdays at 5:30 pm

Zoom Social Hour, Thursday at 7:00 pm

Zoom Worship, Sunday at 10:00 am

A Prayer Just for This Week:  …is, once again, more of a reflection…this time in two parts (interactive!)  We are clearly living in a broken world and might be tempted to wonder sometimes where God is in all this. Take a listen to Leonard Cohen’s song, “Anthem” which reminds us (as Christine Sine writes), “that there is indeed a crack in everything but this is not a reason for despair but rather for hope because this is indeed how the light gets in.” You can listen to Cohen’s song here:

Then enjoy this by Christine Sine, on Godspace.

Stay Close to the Crack

Stay close to the cracks,

To the broken places,

where people weep

and cry out in pain.

Stay close to the cracks,

where God’s tears fall,

and God’s wounds bleed

for love of us.

Stay close to the cracks

where the light shines in,

and grass pushes up

through concrete.

Stay close to the cracks

where wounds

open doorways

to healing and wholeness and life.


Chapel Chat is a weekly publication of the Squaw Valley Chapel, United Church of Christ.  The Chapel is located at 444 Squaw Peak Road, Olympic Valley, CA  96146.  To comment or to ask to be added or removed from the e-mail list, please contact Dave and Rita Holtebeck at or call 530-587-5086.  OR……….Pastor James Kosko: