From the Rector

phil_brochardFamily Stories

This Sunday we gather once again for our Annual Meeting. For well over 100 years we have been doing this, gathering together to remember what has been, give thanks for what is, and look for what we hope to come. And, as a parish family, often to do this, we will tell stories.

I suspect that my family is not alone in telling stories when we gather. At Christmas, milestone birthdays, weddings, and memorials, often when we come together, the stories come out. Like that one Thanksgiving when my Great Gram forgot her homemade whipped cream. Not a problem, canned whipped cream was procured from a store. And then used by my older brother, father and uncle in the Great Whipped Cream Battle of 1980. The mess was cleaned up rather quickly. The story lives on in infamy.

And not all family stories are easy to tell. In my family, one of those is of my Aunt Elsie’s endurance of ALS. But with tenderness, we still tell it. In all, we tell these stories to remember. To remember acts of courage, times of trial, and moments of joy. To remember who and whose we are.

It is the same with us at All Souls Parish. Whenever we gather at milestones like an Annual Meeting we do so to remember. And we do this in many ways. For the data junkies among us, there will be stories of numbers, oh, there will be numbers. Our finances, both of this past year and prospectively for this year to come, will be presented. For those who like a good read, there will be reports, oh, there will be reports. All of the reports have actually been written and placed (by the grace of God and the skill and perseverance of our Parish Administrator Joy Shih Ng) into our Annual Report. This year, once again, you can download a pdf of the Annual Report here. Limited numbers of paper copies will be available on Sunday, but start your reading with your digital copy today!

In a practice that we have held for several years now, I will be looking back to the Annual Reports of 1966 and 1991 for stories, glimpses of All Souls past. This has been a practice that many find to be of great importance. Telling the stories of what we have faced, how we have responded, and who we have been has been at turns humorous, connective, and even healing.

And so when we come together this Sunday in the Parish Hall at 10:15a, we will be telling stories. Liz, Jess, Emily and I (Christopher is on sabbatical) will be telling a brief story of a time in this past year at All Souls that should be noted, held up, re-membered. We will be thanking and remembering our outgoing Vestry members, and in one of my greatest honors as the Rector of All Souls, I will be presenting a Rector’s Cross to All Soulsians who have offered dedicated, faith-filled service this past year, often going unseen in the process.

So please join us, whether you usually come to worship at 7:30a, 9a, or 11:15a. Come to thank, come to remember, and come to wonder at what chapter is yet to be told in the story that is the unfolding life of All Souls Parish.


Your All Souls Compendium of 2015

annual_reportIn our ongoing desire to live as responsible stewards of creation, the 2015 Annual Report is available digitally. If you are able, please download it to your laptop or tablet and bring it with you this Sunday morning to follow along at the annual meeting. Limited paper copies will be available as well. You can download the report from our website here.

Meet your 2016 Vestry Candidates

It is once again time to elect a new class of vestry members! Here are the four generous souls who have agreed to offer their time and talent in leading our community.

Maggie_Cooke_PicMaggie Cooke
I found All Souls Parish in 1998, while looking for a church home for my family, then with year old twins. Those babies were baptized in 1998, grew up in the church, and are now in their freshman year of college. Both good fortune and good timing had me as a member of both the vestry and Rector Search Committee that called Fr. Phil. Currently, I sing in the Hearts On Fire Gospel Choir, bake newcomer bread, arrange flowers, and tote contributions to the Berkeley Food Pantry. While continuing in those and other roles, I would also like to contribute my perspective and views on how best to use the great resource of The Parish House in maintaining and growing the ministries of All Souls.

Ivor_EmmanuelIvor Emmanuel
I have been a member of All Souls since October 2013, serving on the Stephen Ministry team since 2011 and also serving as an usher and lector. Before coming to All Souls I was a member of the parish of St. John The Divine in Urbana-Champaign where I held similar duties including a stint on the vestry. I obtained a Phd in Higher Education from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Presently I serve as the Director of the Berkeley International Office at UC-Berkeley. I look forward to serving our community bringing to bear my many years of experience in management and strategic planning. I am most happy to serve in whatever capacity that best fits our parish needs at this time as we look to the future.☺

Rebecca_Whitney_PhotoRebecca Whitney
I grew up in Connecticut but spent summer vacations in the Bay Area every year visiting my father’s parents. So when I had the chance to move to San Francisco in the mid-1990s, I took it, and I haven’t looked back since. My husband, Perry, and I moved to Berkeley in 2005, and we started attending All Souls in 2009. We have three children— Luke, Eloise, and Gabriella.

Over these past six years, I have engaged with the All Souls community in a few different ways: as a Door Person in the Sunday School, as a member of the Hospitality Committee, and this year as a member of Nikky Wood’s Lay Committee. I treasure the opportunity to participate in a dynamic and multi-generational community, a place where I have found intellectual, spiritual, and personal nourishment. I am excited to deepen my commitment to and involvement with the church through the Vestry.

I have spent my entire career in education, first as a high school English teacher and now as a Learning Specialist. I work with students with learning difficulties in a K-8 school, where collaboration and teamwork are major parts of my day.  I hope to bring a balanced perspective and an open mind to this important work.

bo_burlinghamBo Burlingham
Bo Burlingham is the author most recently of Finish Big: How Great Entrepreneurs Exit Their Companies on Top (Portfolio/PenguinRandomHouse). He previously authored Small Giants: Companies That Choose To Be Great Instead of Big, which was a finalist for the 2006 Financial Times/Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year award. That book inspired the Small Giants Community, which he cofounded with Paul Spiegelman. He has written three other books with coauthors, including two with Jack Stack, CEO of Springfield Holdings Corp. and the pioneer of open-book management. The first of them, The Great Game of Business, was named one of 100 best business books of all time. The second, A Stake in the Outcome, has been called “the first management classic of the new millennium.” He also wrote Street Smarts: An All-Purpose Tool Kit for Entrepreneurs with Norm Brodsky, the founder of CitiStorage and pillar of the Greenpoint-Williamsburg community in Brooklyn. A 33-year veteran of Inc. magazine, where he has written a monthly column with Brodsky for the last two decades, he recently left and joined Forbes magazine as a contributor.

Bo grew up in Suffern, NY, about 30 miles outside New York. He attended Princeton University and graduated in 1967. In 1970 he married his wife, Lisa. (They now live in Oakland and have two children and four grandchildren.) Before joining Inc. in January, 1983, Bo served as managing editor of Ramparts magazine, contributing editor of New Times magazine, and a member of the editorial board of Working Papers. In the early 1980s, he joined Fidelity Investments, the mutual fund company, where he worked with money manager Peter Lynch and other leaders in the investment community. Burlingham was a founding member, with Tom Peters, of PAC/World, an international organization of business leaders and observers. He served on the board of The Body Shop Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of the international skin and hair care company from 1992 to 1997. He has been a member for All Souls for the past 12 years.

Welcoming New Members

In December, we welcomed new members into the All Souls family. Today and in the coming weeks, we’ll hear from many of them.

Blake HarperI moved to the bay area in August, 2015 to begin my Ph.D in philosophy at UC Berkeley. Before coming to Berkeley I was an undergrad at Middlebury College in Vermont where I majored in philosophy and religious studies; played water polo; skied as much as I could; led meditation groups and worked on interfaith service projects. Now that I am in Berkeley I am excited to take spend more time on triathlon training. Most recently I enjoyed running for the All Soles team in the Berkeley Half Marathon.

I am also a “PK” — a preacher’s kid — and grew up in Grace Episcopal Church on Bainbridge Island. My favorite things about All Souls are the people and the liturgy. I am very eager to get to know more of the wonderful folks in this community while I am here in Berkeley working toward my doctorate!

– Blake Harper

My name is Tripp Hudgins and my wife, Patricia Austin, and I have been attending All Souls for the better part of three years now. Usually you see me with a mandolin or guitar in my hands. Sometimes my son, Elias is with me, too.

I was baptized at St. James the Less Episcopal Church in Ashland, VA as an infant in 1970. Does this make me a cradle Episcopalian? I was confirmed this past November on the eleventh anniversary of my ordination to the Baptist ministry (American Baptist Church, USA; Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was one of ours.). My walk of faith has been mostly musical and certainly ecumenical. I have my M.Div. and my MTS from Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Chicago. Dr. Ruth Meyers was my thesis adviser. I have served a church musician or pastor for more than two decades. We moved to Berkeley so that I could pursue a PhD at the Graduate Theological Union in Liturgy and Ethnomusicology.

I am a grateful resident of the Parish House and have deeply enjoyed making All Souls my home. I love to bake bread and watch movies. And when I am not trying to write my comprehensive exams, I am busily keeping a robust online presence.

– Tripp Hudgins


Annual Meeting
Come on January 31st to our Annual Parish Meeting at 10:15 am in the Parish Hall. We’ll hear stories from this year and many years ago, celebrate the ministries of the church, look ahead to 2016 and beyond, and elect new leaders for All Souls and the wider church. This is important work! Please join us.

Cheer on Cal basketball together
A crew of All Soulsians will be heading to basketball games in a few weeks. Come to Cal Women vs. Washington, Sunday January 31st at 2pm, $6 (chairbacks!), and Cal Men vs. Oregon State, Saturday February 13th at 3:30pm for $15 per ticket. Email Don Gates to reserve tickets.

Shrove Tuesday / Mardi Gras

Save the date — Lent is coming up quickly! On Tuesday, February 9th we’ll gather to feast on jambalaya and pancakes, share in delight and festivities, and get ready for Lent. Stay tuned for details!