About Fiona Meyer

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So far Fiona Meyer has created 15 blog entries.

Introducing Associate Pastor for Christian Formation Candidate Michelle Vecchio-Lyzenga

2021-11-02T10:21:09-07:00October 22nd, 2021|All Church|

With joy and hope the Associate Pastor Nominating Committee (APNC) is pleased to announce Michelle Vecchio-Lyzenga as the APNC’s candidate for Associate Pastor for Christian Formation at First Pres Berkeley! Throughout our process we have been impressed with Michelle’s deep love for the work and practice of Christian Formation and her ability to hold both big-picture vision and details, with great care for individuals and the community along the way. Click here to read the full letter from the APNC. The congregation is invited to a Congregational Meeting on Sunday, November 7 at 1 pm on Zoom to vote on [...]

Did You Miss GCC? Watch Recordings of the Sessions Here!

2021-10-21T13:51:59-07:00October 21st, 2021|All Church, Serve|

Did you miss out on attending GCC this year? Or, do you want to watch the panels all over again? Our GCC page isn't going anywhere! It has links to all the recordings, as well as speaker biographies and resources for you peruse on your own time. Visit the GCC homepage. Watch the panels on YouTube. Thank you to everyone who attended or watched a recording this year. And a special thank you to our panelists and staff who were responsible for making #GCC2021 happen!

Fall 2021 Coffee & Conversation with Pastor Tom

2022-01-13T12:37:47-08:00September 22nd, 2021|Community|

Enjoy a cup of coffee and conversation with Pastor Tom and others as he guides us on a journey through 1 Thessalonians. Paul’s pastoral sensitivity shines in this letter written to express his care for these new believers, to affirm their faith, and to give them perspective about their friends who have died. This letter affirms and guides their faith along a path toward growth and comfort. It has much to say to us as well as we also live our faith in the light of the need for guidance and comfort. To join this group, please click here. Missed [...]

Playhouse Build

2021-07-27T12:51:50-07:00July 27th, 2021|Serve, Youth|

At the end of June, our High School Youth joined with our legacy mission partner, Habitat for Humanity, to create and build a beautiful and sturdy Playhouse that was passed along to Berkeley Presyberian Mission Homes. The whole experience was exceptional—from the youth learning about Habitat, to writing support letters, to the actual day’s build, to seeing children play in the house! We all learned so much about supporting an organization that is doing so much good in the world, how to use some fancy tools to measure, how to apply materials, and even how to seal a roof. We [...]

July 23 Friday Email

2021-07-26T14:35:00-07:00July 23rd, 2021|All Church|

Dear First Pres Family, What a difference four weeks has made. A month ago the Coronavirus Task Force was tracking with staff toward being able to fully reopen our campus in September. In mid-June, California relaxed restrictions. COVID-19 case rates reached minimal levels (as low as 1.9 cases per 100K). Then case rates began increasing...and last week's case rates in Alameda County were at what the state formerly called the Purple/Widespread virus tier. So now we are stepping forward a little more slowly. This week, we are thankful there are signs that Alameda County case growth may be slowing, and also that the Task Force's policies and procedures [...]

Welcome Dave Carranza, Director for Youth and Family Ministry

2021-07-26T14:32:57-07:00July 16th, 2021|All Church, Children, Young Adults, Youth|

We are delighted to welcome our new director for Youth and Family Ministry! Dave Carranza brings with him extensive experience working with youth inside and outside the church and helping them discover their identity as radically beloved and uniquely gifted children of God. Dave will begin his time at First Pres Berkeley on July 19. Save the Date for a meet and greet with Dave Sunday, August 8, following worship. We give thanks to God for this community and for the wonderful gifts Dave will bring among us. In Christ, First Pres Berkeley Director for Youth and Family Ministry Search Committee [...]

July 16 Friday Email

2021-07-26T14:34:32-07:00July 16th, 2021|All Church|

Dear First Pres Family, In May, we began detailing more about the new staffing structure by ministry area as teams are coming together and beginning their work. Since then, individual ministries have presented their hopes and ideas for the way forward: Mark Stryker for Community Care,  Tom Elson for Missional Engagement, Michelle Vecchio-Lyzenga for Christian Formation, and Li-Wen Monk for Worship. Today, to conclude these updates, I’d like to share about the First Pres Operations team. The Operations Team at First Pres exists to facilitate and support our campus and ministries. We want operations to function effortlessly like an elevator: you push a button, the door [...]

A Card from the Project Mercy Team

2021-07-15T15:24:58-07:00July 15th, 2021|Serve|

We received a letter and card from our friends at Project Mercy and thought we'd share it with our First Pres family! Dear congregation of First Presbyterian Church Berkeley, Blessings of the Lord and greetings from Ethiopia. We pray and trust that you are well. We wanted to reach out and let you know how much we have appreciated and been blessed and strengthened by your standing with us through a rather challenging 2020. Your faithfulness in prayer and support has been tremendous. The education, health, nutrition, vocation and clean water programs have all continued to bless the community. Thank [...]

July 9 Friday Email

2021-07-26T14:34:43-07:00July 9th, 2021|All Church|

Dear First Pres Family, In May, we began a series of letters from the Session, Personnel Committee, and pastoral team about the new staffing structure at First Pres. As teams come together and are beginning their work, individual ministries are presenting their hopes and ideas for the way forward. We've had the opportunity to hear from Mark Stryker about Community Care, from Tom Elson about Missional Engagement, and from Michelle Vecchio-Lyzenga about Christian Formation. Today, I’d like to share about the next season in worship. When California shut down last year due to COVID-19, our congregation was unable to do what we have [...]

July 2 Friday Email

2021-07-26T14:34:38-07:00July 2nd, 2021|All Church|

Dearest First Pres Family, This past week, I received an email from my dear friend, the Rev. Glen Bell, who works at the Presbyterian Foundation. In his work with PC(USA) congregations around the country, Glen learned that the challenges and opportunities facing the church today are many and yet very similar. In the realm of challenges, most pastors reported the same answer…their members are struggling to adjust to “the sudden shifts accompanied by uncertainty, isolation and fatigue.” I think we can all relate to this feeling of exhaustion over the relentlessness of change. Yet in the area of opportunities, the [...]

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