In her later years my mother used to like to “downsize” her collections of memories, pictures, letters, etc. However, what would normally happen is that she would take days reading letters, viewing pictures, and in the end save them all. My daughter, Brie, and husband, Ying, were kind enough to digitize all of the pictures and have them play on a loop on her Alexa show. They also would read to her the birthday cards sent to her. Her eyesight was too poor to read them herself. Still, she kept the love letters from my father and other family members, she wanted them near though she could not read them.


This Sunday as we continue our reading from John 15. Jesus has words of love for his disciples. They are as dear to him and he was to God.  What he wants from them is to love one another as he has loved them. In this way, they will bear fruit that will last.


He shares these words on the night of his arrest when he will show the depth of God’s love by laying down his life for his friends.

As a Baby Boomer who lived through the ’60s, I remember plenty of love songs. The theme was reflected in the Beatle’s lyric that “All we need is Love”. Sadly, unlike the disciples, the Beatles could not make that work in reality. They broke up in 1970. The majority of the members pointed to the demanding dispositions of John and Yoko as a root cause. In his song “Imagine” John saw the way for the world to come together was for people to join us then the world would live as one.


Jesus would agree that “All we need is Love”. Love of God and love of neighbor, but he would not agree that the effort of loving is easy or that the best way to get there is to get people to agree with you.


The oneness Jesus points to is a oneness that comes from friends being willing to sacrifice for one another. “Lay down their lives” for their friends.


Who are the people who would lay down their lives for you?


I cannot help but pray for the people of Ukraine where young men are called to lay down their lives for their family and friends. Russian troops have kidnapped children, raped women, and bombed cities with little regard for civilian life. Current and past history teaches them that Russia is not their friend. Now more men ages 21 and up are asked to join the fight.


In contrast, the Hamas fighters in Gaza are said to hide beneath hospitals and behind civilians. The result is that half the people killed by Israeli bombs are women and children.


We see the youth in our country rising up as many did in my youth. Pleading for the innocent. The impression is that Love and Peace can prevail. The truth is that it is not and has never been easy.


As Jesus continues in John 15:20, he says: “Servants are not greater than their master. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you.”   People can even “hate you without a cause.”


So love involves effort and sacrifice. Effort and sacrifice were not on the list for many in my day. Many like the Beatles, gave up. Communes that looked so inviting were abandoned. Separations and divorces increased. Populization kept growing. Some things have improved since I was young. However, I had hoped our generation could have done more to bring the world together.


To live a life of love you need a soft heart but also one armored with faith in the power of love to overcome all things. John 16:20 is succinct “You will weep and mourn . . . you will have pain, but your pain will turn to joy.”


PRAYER  Jesus, thank you for praying for us as we witness of your love to the world. You took up the cross so that we might know the depth of your love and be forgiven and renewed. May we take up our cross of caring so the world might more fully reflect your kingdom.

Grace and Peace,                                                   Pastor John Bunge

Pacifica Synod Regional Gatherings


A Regional Gathering of our Synod will be held on May 11th from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm at First Lutheran, Redlands, and lunch will be provided. The cost per person will be $20.  The Regional Gatherings will be an opportunity to worship together, as well as to engage in substantive conversation on the issues that matter most to us as a synod. Everyone is invited to the Regional Gathering. All voting members are expected to attend both the Regional Gathering in their area and the Azoombly (assembly online Zoom). Each person must be registered to attend so that they can plan meals and seating.


Next Pantry – Every 2nd & 4th Saturday. Next up is May 11 and 25.

Saturday, May 11th will be the annual food drive by the Yucaipa Postal employees.  Tell your neighbors to spring clean their pantry and put out a bag for their Postal employee.  Any non-perishable items are welcome.  Faith Food Pantry is a recipient of this food drive.

Support – Bless you for all the ways you support Faith Lutheran. Your financial support has been amazing. We do need continued support as the second story is no longer rented by Zion Reformed.

Time of Meditation –Nelson will be in rehab for some time, but the group is still meeting on Thursdays @ 1 pm. Thanks Bonnie and others for this spiritual support of our church.

LAUREN SCHAFER our Office Assistant’s hours will be out of the office for the next couple of weeks. Pastor Bunge is in the office Mondays and Tuesdays.


Confirmation Classes  – We are back in action through May at 11:15 am. The last day of this year’s spring is May 19.


CHOIR – We practice at 9:00 am before services.

BELLS – are coming back this summer.  Let Irm know about your interest.


WELCA – The Next Women’s Bible Study will be postponed to June 1; they will be assisting with the funeral for Lynda Buschauer on May 4 at 10:30 a.m.

QUILTING – Emily Smith’s Group (909.255.2452) has completed 16 for Central City Lutheran Mission and 6 for Lutheran World Relief. They also gave 23 lap quilts to Smiles Seniors of Yucaipa, who sent a nice Thank you note.



PRAY for:

  • Nelson is doing well recovering from hip surgery.
  • Nancy’s son, Gabe, is recovering after being attacked in the Riverside area.
  • erwin as he mourns the death of Lynda who passed away March 19. Her memorial service will be on May 4 at 10:30 am. Irm and a string quartet will play prior to the service. Erwin’s email:
  • Eloise appreciates your prayers.
  • Jan Wheeler appreciates our prayers for Andrew Gentry, a co-worker of her son Brian.
  • The Koening’s appreciate your prayers.
  • Kyle and Dana’s son, Kevin’s, Mother-in-Law, Lisa, cancer was found even after surgery.
  • Cesar and Kim appreciate prayers for their sons, Tim, and Kyle. Her brother Jim is in a critical state.
  • The Sheas would appreciate prayers for Rebecca and Chris Herandez in need of housing for themselves and the twins.
  • Continued Godly journey for Brendan Simms, son of Bonnie Strack.




Faith Lutheran now has the opportunity to support Soles 4 Souls, a San Bernardino local charity that collects and delivers shoes for people all over the world who have no shoes.

If you have new or lightly worn shoes that are “just taking up room” in your closet or garage, please bring them to the collection boxes inside the Narthex and Fireside Room and put them in the box labeled “Soles 4 Souls”.

They will be delivered or picked up.





APRIL  28      BINGO was FUN!  Thanks to Kim for the Taco Soup, and thanks much to Paula for the yummy Strawberry dessert; and to Michelle for the delightful Pasta Salad and sandwiches.  And the Bingo prizes were a big hit.  Thanks again to Pat Teeters! and others.

We are always collecting bingo prizes. The group has asked to play once a month.  Please leave them in the office, and mark Bingo Prizes.  You are appreciated!



5          WELCA



We will have gourmet appetizers, petite desserts (and food for young people, too) Thank you to Kim, Dona, and Jennifer!



Thank you to the Preschool Committee, Robyn Blue, Pat Motschall, Sharon, and Steve Cady for planning the event. This is also Pentecost – you are invited to wear red for that day.


26       Memorial Day Weekend