First Pres Berkeley invites you to join us for two upcoming conversations exploring Christianity, religion, and the implications for the future of the church and our faith.

Sunday, January 22, 12 pm, Sanctuary or Livestream

Competing Christianities: A Conversation with Rev. Kamal Hasaan Join us for a discussion with Sojourner Truth Presbyterian Church’s Rev. Kamal Hassan and members of First Pres Berkeley’s Racial Justice Working Group on William Yoo’s new book, “What Kind of Christianity: A History of Slavery and Anti-Black Racism in the Presbyterian Church“, and the implications it raises for the future of the church. Brief Q&A will also be included.


What Kind of Christianity is an unflinching indictment of mainstream Presbyterianism in America for its historical support of slavery and its persistent failure to confront its complicity head-on. Through his meticulous research of the past, Yoo highlights a way forward for all Christians committed to addressing systemic racism with eyes wide open.” ―Kirk Nolan, Professor of Religion, Presbyterian College

For questions, contact Beth Thomsen at
To view online, click HERE.

Sunday, January 29, 12 pm, Sanctuary or Livestream

Work, Pray, Code Discussion Join us for a conversation with sociologist and UC Berkeley professor Dr. Carolyn Chen about her most recent book: Work, Pray, Code: When Work Becomes Religion in Silicon Valley. Whether or not you work in tech, for anyone serious about their faith, the implications of these questions are worth paying attention to. 


The church has long considered itself the primary place people look to for identity, belonging, purpose. But in her book, Work Pray Code, UC Berkeley professor and First Pres Berkeley member Carolyn Chen suggests this may not be the case in today’s Bay Area. Drawing from extensive sociological research among Silicon Valley professionals, she suggests that the workplace has become for many their primary place for transcendence.


“Work has become a spiritual practice that inspires religious fervor,” Chen writes. “People are not ‘selling their souls’ at work. Rather, work is where they find their souls.” What happens when work becomes religion? How have Bay Area corporate workplaces effectively appropriated religious language and practices? And what lessons might all this hold for the church?


More about Dr. Chen: Carolyn Chen’s research focuses on religion, spirituality, and work in the new economy, as well as Asian American religions. She is the Co-Director of the Berkeley Center for the Study of Religion and the Executive Director of the Asian Pacific American Religions Research Initiative (APARRI), a scholarly community committed to the advancement of public knowledge of Asian Pacific American religions.

For questions, contact Rev. Michelle Vecchio-Lyzenga at View online here. Childcare provided for ages 2 years–4th grade by contacting by Thursday, January 26.