October 26, 2017 – Interfaith Council Monthly Meeting – Handouts – Fill-A-Bag 2017   City of Hope   Day of Peace Follow Up Article

1. Welcome/Introductions

2. Additional Items To Be Discussed

3. Conversation about additional bylaws

a. Conversations needed to address any gaps in our bylaws. What this council is and what is isn’t.
b. This part of the meeting was a long discussion and notes were taken on adjusting the current set of by-laws.
c. Discussion around
i. Time of service for chair and other official positions.
ii. Member of the council vs friend of the council.
iii. Reviving discussion about focused sub-committees that focus on accomplishing goals of the   organization.
iv. Search for presenters that develop our goals vs approval of presenters trying to further their message through us.
v. Advocacy vs informational. Understanding that informational presentations are not necessarily endorsed by the ICLM. Avoiding topics of political or divisive nature.
d. Mission
e. Vision
f. Values

4. Housing for Homeless

a. Housed two families.
b. Needs a little more money, about $2,200 right now.
c. Grant application follow up for $2,000.
d. Bruce Crenshaw in regular contact.

5. Fill-a-bag feed a child – Dani Womack – See Flyer

a. Thanksgiving and Christmas drives
b. Please spread this flyer to all your congregations. There is a great need inside of our own La Mesa-Spring Valley School District

6. City of Hope – Dani Womack – See Flyer

a. Aftermath of a critical diagnosis
b. Emotional first aid. Care plans
c. Looking for more volunteers
d. Have funding to help in immediate aftermath
e. Professionals on short request
f. Training November 3rd and 4th
g. Lots of teenagers and adults needed, training provided
h. Non-profit based organization
i. Service credits available.

7. St Martin of Tours New Father Chris Kintanar

a. Encouragement for involvement in social justice issues
b. More involvement in the local community

8. Interfaith Shelter Network

a. Vista La Mesa may be taking over Shelter Network gap
b. Crosspointe sending some volunteers
c. Starts Dec 30th thru January13th

9. Old Business

7. New Business

8. Next Meeting – November 30 5th Thursday of November due to holiday
Bring cookies. Bring stories of “Why the Interfaith Council of La Mesa is important?”

9. Adjourn

September 28, 2017 – Interfaith Council Monthly Meeting – Handouts – Tony Movie Screening SOS SD Collaborative Oct 7th San Diego 350 ICLM – October 26 2017 Meeting Notes Human Trafficking Resource Fair Trade Slavery out of Shopping Fair Trade Event Oct 15th Flyer Day of Peace Summary

1. Welcome/Introductions

2. Additional Items To Be Discussed

3. Report On The Interfaith Council’s Celebration – Suellen Treadwell
Of Peace Day

a. Report – See sheet of achievements
b. Lots of great media coverage this year of what is happening in La Mesa for the Day of Peace celebration. Coverage before in many media outlets and a nice after article in the La Mesa Courier. Important to follow up to make sure people see the success of the event.
c. Collin Parent presentation of a proclamation of the La Mesa Day of Peace, signed by mayor and city council.
d. United Nations San Diego Organization contacted us before the event to help and be a part in any way.
e. Thank you LaVern for the beautiful stoles from the NAAN conference back in August.
f. Will post pictures on our council website
a. Facebook Interfaith page, Rebecca needs admin privilege from Dani to update.
g. Follow up event – International Day of Peace Listening Circles to Shift Thinking was last Thursday at Vista La Mesa. Many attending including represtatives from Jewish, Mormon, disciple of Christ and others.
a. Looking for next event to be in the LMPD community room.

4. San Diego 350 – Climate Change Action – David Harris

a. City of La Mesa climate action plan. Working on it for about a year. Still in progress. Aspirational goals and still looking for target dates, more teeth, discussion on increased use of mass transit
b. Took on project working with other volunteers in La Mesa trying to get more people involved in the process. Business owners, community organizations and residents concerned with the environment.
c. July 2017 second draft. Some adjustments needed in data that they are working on. La Mesa working on third revision is supposed to come out this month. Will be released shortly for review before the meeting. Working with staff and City council to work on measures
d. Climate action plan. 350 = is carbon dioxide. Levels in the atmosphere. Started 60 years ago in Mauna Loa, Hawaii because of the clean air and to get a baseline. At that time was 320 parts 60 years ago. 405 PPM today. Many things contribute to this high level of carbon dioxide and in turn contributes to global warming and all the consequences along with that. What we can do at the local level? City officials create a Climate Action Plan, because the council and City officials care and are residents, parents and their families attend local schools.
e. There are many categories of focus such as energy, transportation, solid waste diversion and urban forestry…there are 8 actual areas. Encourage the use of more solar and wind power, encourage trolley and buses, use of bicycles and walk, carpool. What can the city do to encourage these things? We can do then do them as individuals and families in La Mesa.
f. Discussion – We know there are varying opinions towards global warning, science and contributors such as cows and termites. Animal agriculture and landfills are also big contributors. There are effort to collect the methane and use that elsewhere and divert organic waste instead of into landfills. Curbside compost conversations, food waste annual conference. Also issues to bring skunks and unwanted animals. Goal with the City is to let people know it is happening. Public hearings coming soon before planning commission and city councils
g. Goal of 100% clean energy by 2035. Meaning our electrical supply be 100% solar , wind hydroelectric or other clean sources. Current La Mesa goal is 70%. Cities jumping on board will help the industry move along faster.
h. Looking also for City to encourage community choice energy. It has been done in other counties. Solana Beach, LA, Marin, Sonoma, Lancaster counties and many others have voted to be a community choice city. Cities can combine their buying power to get this moving. Santee is also working on their Climate Action Plan. Working with SDSU. La Mesa working with USD.
i. Questions: what kind of evaluations will be done from those other cities and improve our cance for success with feedback/best practices.
j. There are statewide organizations promoting community choice, policy institute at USD and other universities. Not from investor owned utilities like SDG&E. SDG&E currently provides 40% clean energy.
k. What is timeline? Hoping finalized by end of the year.
l. Postcards will start next week to City Council,
m. Aaron – state of California rules do apply. City regulations are very limited. State of California would be a good place to focus. Those regulations need to be on developers so that the local governments will save on maintenance of the local cities for example. The City of La Mesa will have difficulties sticky their neck out to make buildings more expensive to build within the City.

=350 is a national organization and working at all levels of government.

If you or interested reach out to David Harris www.SanDiego350.org or Volunteer@sandiego350.org

5. Old Business

6. New Business

a. Roger Knowlton La Mesa First United Methodist-Homelessness movie dinner’s theater. See flyer, Tony is form San Diego and will be there panel discussion afterwards.
Please RSVP to contacts on flyer.

b. Dani Womack Crosspointe Life Church – La Mesa collaborative Oct 7th human trafficking – see flyer
a. A unique things about these presentation Tom Jones of hope project. It is not all women and girls. The young men and boys need to know also send an RSVP via email or text message.
b. Once you see the signs, then what do you do next, that is what will be taught. How to ask open ended questions, what to say and not to say. Be more informed by attending this event.

c. Gene Carpenter – Hep A concern 232 homelesse1 case of Hep 1/3 are illicit drug users. East County mag said from La Mesa 24 public restrooms. 10 are open 24 hours a day. Gene requested a list. This is one of the big identifying problems of hand washing. Awaiting a response from City on location of those 10 bathroom locations. This is a part of caring for the homeless in La Mesa.

a. What can we do to influence city council? City meeting with County soon.
b. Is there a map of these restrooms? Another concern is only cold water and no soap in these public restrooms.
c. 1st united Methodist church has provided 24 inoculations getting vaccines.
d. Evonne Garret should be the contact for soap dispensaries. Friction helps but soap is better.
e. Ingestion period is 7 weeks!! What are symptoms and how to treat?
f. City is cleaning with correct chemicals.

d. Training information coming out from Interfaith Shelter Network. Wednesday the 4th. Bill Zucconi already sent out info.

e. Anna Pacheco – flyer fair trade 7th annual fair trade gift trade, new vendors, more clothes, fair trade cotton. Ask everyone to just check it out. Sunday October 15th. Talk with Anne if you are interested in hosting an event.

f. San Diego Regional Interfaith Collaborative is getting churches to combine efforts to accomplish more – see flyer on human trafficking. Presentations from Point Loma Nazarene….concern is funding issue. Willing to come to youth groups.

7. Next Meeting – October 26, 2017
November 30th on a 5th Thursday instead due to Thanksgiving holiday
December – no meeting

July 27, 2017 – Interfaith Council Monthly Meeting

 La Mesa Interfaith Council minutes, July 27, 2017

The meeting opened with a prayer.
1. Report from UN International Day of Peace celebration task force
Suellen reported on behalf of the task force. The flyers that Anne had prepared were distributed, as well as the task force minutes of July 17. The event will be held on Sunday afternoon, September 17, 3:00 – 5:00 pm in Aztec Park. The basic format is the same, with speakers from different Faith Traditions, choirs, and table displays by humanitarian organizations. Speakers from various faiths will mention their motivation for the work they do, offer thoughts on building a culture of peace, and present ideas on promoting cooperation that they gleaned from attendees. There will be time, 3:00 – 3:45, for the speakers to circulate among participants and ask for their ideas. We are hoping that Congolese and Native American groups will sing and chant. There may also be other choirs earlier in the program.
Colin Parent from the City Council will be present and has been asked to help arrange a La Mesa Day of Peace proclamation. This would presumably be on September 17 but would refer to the United Nations International Day of Peace on September 21.
The task force had consulted on suggestions to have more of a festival, with food and discussion groups, but the main obstacle is heat. It was suggested that there could be discussion groups as a follow-up event that people could sign up for. We would need hosts and skilled facilitators.
The task force requested assistance from the Interfaith Council on the day of the event, i.e. reserving park space from 7:00 am till 3:00 pm and bringing canopies.

2. Report on East Co. homelessness meeting run by the East County Chamber of Commerce, held at the La Mesa Civic Center. Rebecca reported on a meeting last week of a task force working on a safe parking lot project. We could possibly invite the overall coordinator, Eric Land, to speak. It was mentioned that these efforts are a result of the grand jury report.

3. Review of By-laws, discussion on focus of Interfaith Council  (Proposed By Laws)
The Council consulted on the proposed by-laws (see attachment). It was suggested that Rebecca and David could talk to some clergy whose churches are not members of the Interfaith Council to encourage them to join. We could also speak to friends who belong to churches or Faith Traditions not represented and encourage them to ask their faith communities to join. Bill spoke about the Lemon Grove Clergy Association and its meetings, which include clergy, business leaders, the City Manager, community groups and a representative of the Sheriff’s Department. It is a forum for communication from the city to churches and the churches to the city. The agenda focuses on what’s happening in the community and the churches get involved. Contact people are Mark and Ann Stapleton. Possibly one of us could attend a meeting and report back.

4. John Michno of the San Diego Interfaith Climate Coalition
John spoke briefly about the efforts of the San Diego Interfaith Climate Coalition to work with churches on a broad range of climate change initiatives. The Coalition welcomes all churches to participate in any way they like. This includes workshops, invite political advocacy and give presentations on the science of climate change. John is willing to come and speak at greater length to the Council.

5. The next Interfaith Council meeting will be on Thursday, August 24, 2017.

February 23, 2017 – Interfaith Council Monthly Meeting

Welcome/Introductions – Temporary location just for this month at Journey Church.

Affordable Housing – La Mesa Colin Parent – La Mesa City Councilmember

Low-income housing – gave summary of affordable homes a discussion and then question and conversations.

Introduction – experience in housing and community and policy with Governor Brown’s administration. San Diego Housing commission. Circulate San Diego is Colin’s current employment.

Terms – affordable housing / low-income housing umbrella terms to get homes for those with lower income. Affordable homes is very common usage in discussion.

What is affordable? Someone can rent or own and not pay 30% of their income. Many in California pay 50% plus but 30% is a general standard. Median income is $72k and 30% decides equation. Most homes are built for those make 62% of median income so 30% of that annual income. Some catchphrases use term to reflect 30% of median income which many don’t make that median income. So not enough homes are being provided for those not making average income.

1. Terms and measurements often confuse the issues and concerns. There is not a standard for judging or criteria. Those with low income don’t have affordable homes to live in. Market rate affordability that still meets their income standard.

2. Primary reason is that not enough. It is part due to a supply and demand issue

3. Section 8 is also limited and not available for everyone, convicted felons example.

4. Aging homes depreciation is an option. New homes are more expensive then with time as the units age, these become more affordable after time.

5. Some new product such as micro-apartments. Keep them small and offer low rents. Very little of that happening. Not a lot of money for investors or developers. These can be attractive to live closer to work. Often no parking. Closer to life-style amenities. Parking becomes an amenity that is very expensive. A lot of policies that require parking or limit height or size of building. And add costs to home being public subsidize by tax payers. So less homes are built due to this consequence also.

6. Programs that exist –

a. Public partner, some in San Diego area. A type of federal program. Not being built any more, fed government gives money to build and maintain.

b. Section 8 is a federal program gives voucher through housing dept. certain landlords will accept. The government will pay the difference from what you can pay and the cost of the apartment. Does give more choice to families and gives money to provide market returns. Felons not approved for benefit.

c. Loan to housing tax credit – Dan Quayle source. Give developers help with financing. Tax credits to states and on to a non-profit. They sell that tax credit to an investor/bank to build affordable homes. 90% of affordable homes in California are built with this program,. Forces the bank to do the underwriting even with the non-profit. No ongoing subsidy.

d. Redevelopment agencies are now gone away.

e. Inclusionary housing policies. Require to build a certain percentage of units deemed as affordable housing.

f. Density bonus – affordable homes bonus program. Instead of requiring they make trades, more units allowed if created as affordable. Not tax payer paid but developer benefits to build more than typically allowed.

La Mesa council now has a sub-committee looking in to this since it has never to date been started. Many don’t have this but important if we want to participate in the state program.

Q&A Is La Mesa built out? Yes but infill is the options with more density in housing which you can see.

Park station – 2 hearings at planning commission. Developer withdrew but there are talks with the developer to bring back a revised proposal that is 4 stories. The hotel is out.

$560k in La Mesa housing is it an oxy-moron? The strong housing market is good but has consequences. New developments will be addressed. Market rate solution is provide more supply and this trend will lower home values making them more affordable to others. We really are a small piece in La Mesa for the overall region.

If you combine housing and transportation this really needs to stay below 50% of income. If household housing and transportation budget go over 70% of a family’s budget it hits the nutrition budget of the household. It is a catch…there are affordable homes in Boulevard but too far and costly for transportation. Transportation always has to be a part of the discussion.

Sanctuary Cities Jack Shu, Member – Board of Directors, Cleveland National Forest Foundation

Collin Parent shared video of La Mesa police chief. – City Council video clip. Asked about the immigration policies sanctuary cities. Federal police departments to lose federal funds if we do not participate in helping immigration issues. We don’t enforce federal immigration law. What does that mean in La Mesa. Chief “city of la mesa, and other county police/law enforcement do not enforce federal laws of immigration, that is the policy of the federal government. One of the reasons is why that is the people we serve that live here and work and visit are all treated equally. If someone is a victim or witness we will not ask about immigration status because we want to help build partnership. Victims need to feel comfortable about immigration status. The police marching orders are to protect and serve. Enforcing immigration is not in our equation as local police officers in the state of California.

Jack Shu – There was a recent push for a welcoming city resolution not a sanctuary. We do not want to give a false impression to those that are living here. ICE can still do unwarranted questioning. We do not want to give a false impression that ICE cannot do searches here

Data shows that a lot of searches and deportations here. 24,000 in San Diego detained and deported, 13,000 did not commit crimes. Often children and families are living in fear. Simply due to their appearance, ethnic origin or race can cause them to be treated differently.

Jack proposed some strategies. Feels this is a moral issue not a political democratic or republican issues. Faith especially can contribute to the discussion. Not proposing that we break federal laws. A resolution to make a safer community. To have an effective police force you need everyone behind you and not be in fear. A welcoming resolution helps the good feeling towards La Mesa police knowing that they will not question their immigration status. We need support of city council. Collin has helped Jack pursue but need support from other City Councilmen and the Mayor. Times change and the approach for ICE might be more aggressive.

Organizations of faith to appeal to city council members.

Educators approach the city politicians. Mayor especially since he is an educator.

There are human rights issues.

What do we need? Trying to pattern from other cities but customize for La Mesa. Looking for a steering committee. It will be a hard sell to our city council. This is a moral and spiritual issue.

Q&A – Are there any “teeth to the project”. Can we say the city or state are not going to come after you? The police nor other city services like fire and hospitals are not going to treat you differently. A declaration publicly that as a community this is how we feel

Aaron – other approaches. Proposed a letter to undocumented students. The issue of terrorism and immigration has unfortunately been fused together. Seems more of an economic issue. Visa system lets you know when they come in and or where they leave. E-verify program. Many are economic immigrants. Publicly terrorism is merged with immigration. Hard sell to change.

East county politics is making a lot of mixed messages.

Imperial Beach just rejected a recent proposal. Lemon Grove also.

Jack – Policies in the books are law but we need input. More guidance is the goal for citizens.

It can be a political issue and a moral and economic issue. Politics is how we live together. The focus is more the environment of the community. Those that get bullied because of their country of origin. Offer the city council and chief of police and schools to offer more reminders.

If there is anyone that would like to help write the resolution support and have

A base of constituents will be necessary to help move this forward. They could then be encouraged.

A draft will be written soon of conditions we are facing and how to declare.

Those that are interested can contact Jack Shu jkshu@cox.net or (619)

Old Business

New Business

1. Rebecca – Chapman University in Orange founders day. March 10th. Lectures Michael Kinnamon. Religious witness in a time of fear. Interfaith panel and worship service.

2. Aaron – Boston city schools school board allocated a million dollars for students rental assistance. The know if you help students get into stable housing their school grades improve, and increase graduation rates which in turn brings district more financial benefits.

3. Next Meeting –  March 23, 2017 Vista La Mesa Christian Church.  4210 Massachusetts Ave.

January 26, 2017 (handouts from meeting Housing for Homeless Students Goal 2017 , Liberty Project Constitutional Class)

Guest Speakers: Bruce Crenshaw, LMSV School District; Bill Zucconi, Interfaith Shelter

2. Items To Be Discussed

3. Update On Interfaith Shelter Network Bill Zucconi

Director Bill Zucconi gave an overview of the program, which has seven branches throughout San Diego County.  Various churches in each area offer shelter and food, on a rotational basis, to families who are case managed by counselors at various agencies.  Presently there are 11 sites in East County.  A portable shower has been purchased through a grant ($1,550), with the goal of enabling more churches to host.

4. Update On Housing For Homeless Students           Rebecca Littlejohn

Rebecca Littlejohn, Vista La Mesa Christian Pastor, and Bruce Crenshaw explained the need to help families with security deposits so that they can transition into apartments.  All families are screened to determine if they are able to continue with the rent payments.  It is estimated that there are approximately 500 homeless students enrolled in LMSV schools. Rebecca reported that all funds previously donated by LM faith communities have been used and is proposing a fund-raising goal of $15,000 for 2017.  A booklet with a full explanation of the needs, use of funds, procedures, etc. was distributed for all members of ICLM.  It is also available online.  (see follow-up email from Rebecca)

5. Old Business

6. New Business

Collin Parent, La Mesa City Council Member, will attend the next ICLM meeting to discuss the issue of affordable housing. All are encouraged to attend this meeting at noon on Thursday, February 23.

HUD is sponsoring the annual counting of the Homeless on January 27.  Procedures were explained. Volunteers might still be needed in North County.

The next breakfast for the Homeless, held at La Mesa First Methodist Church (Palm Avenue) is scheduled for Saturday, January 28 from 9:30-12. These are held once a month and services include showers, haircuts, consults, blood pressure checks. Volunteers from ICLM are encouraged.

Carol Biederman is preparing a booklet of services available in La Mesa for the homeless. She will obtain a copy of the previous listing of food distribution sites.

It was suggested that the new pastor at L.M. First Methodist Church, Elbert Kim, be invited to speak at ICLM.

La Mesa City Council has two town hall meetings scheduled: January 31 @ Lemon Avenue School and February 2 @ Rolando Elementary. Both are 6:30 – 8:30)

Voice of San Diego deals with issues of affordable housing, homelessness, etc.

Aziz Purmul distributed a pamphlet explaining Muslim beliefs about Jesus.

7. Next Meeting – February 23 @ 12pm – Police Department Community Room

October 27, 2016 – (handouts –  welcome-Saturdays;  mcalister-south-bay-womens-recovery-center ; flyer-for-cancer-support-group-nov-4-2016-revised)

 1.             Report On Meeting With LMPD & City Manager                     Aaron Landau

          Regarding Homelessness in La Mesa

Issue of homeless is on everyone’s radar. Takes a lot of resources including financial resources. June grand jury report dinged East County El Cajon La Mesa, Santee. Issue number of homeless, El Cajon largest with 700 homeless. Notoriety got them all working double-time, overtime on resources and service to the homeless. City manager and Chief Vazquez signed a memorandum saying committing to do more making promises specific to homeless. Aaron made an appointment and to let them know as an individual as a citizen not representing our counsel. Aaron showed him the bag from Sunrise Rotary, they keep in their trunks for homeless. They don’t give money but bags of food and information on resources. We don’t suddenly stop at an island and get in an accident. La Mesa Sunrise project has been going on for long time. Yvonne Garrett city manager and Chief Vazquez meet with Aaron for about 30 -45 minutes. Nice meeting to discuss, a dialogue, what was city doing now and not before. Used to have PERT team one day a week in a police car, now they are going out four days a week. Aaron asked questions and also gave input as possible. Chief mention a few things City of San Diego does. Similar teams but not in an official police car. Says SDPD sworn officer and a psychologist driving around not in a squad car. Can we do that in La Mesa? The first instinct when you see a squad car is what did I do wrong? It is under consideration to use a different vehicle but still has to be a sworn officer but option. Nice exchange and well received. La Mesa Police Dept. has really made improvements to take care of these citizens in our community even though they are homeless. Feels attitudes has changed and improved. Hoping for PERT professional 7 days a week. Chief has spoken at a recent sunrise rotary community.


Any conversations about new shelters or transitional housing has been discussed yet. Future conversations maybe in future with city planning.

Opinion is that City Council has not made homeless a priority. Much has been assigned to Chief Vazquez and has been the focus and has good source. He is also on a council of police chiefs that has homeless permanently on the agenda.  The current council perceives what might need to approve. We as citizens will need to help city council get this as a priority for La Mesa.


Comments: there are shared limited resources for PERT personnel. Recent developments in El Cajon are also mentioned as not having a PERT person available to be there.

Aaron has always tried to be issue oriented, not personal. Trying to incremental improve the situation. This seems to be a better approach.

Question: What is city what is county and city doing for more affordable housing.

The council has to have this as part of their vision. There are other focuses that may be pertinent but we need to help in our conversations with them.

McAlister visitors Amelia and Emma. – south bay women’s recovery center for women with children, detox homes, teen center, girls 12-17. Homeless outreach coordinators. Find those that are abusing alcohol drugs and get them into our centers to get clean and give them stability. Give more opportunities. Housing is still a concern to find something affordable. The last step is to find housing to transition. We bring them into our office to help them dial the numbers to reach for help. Source of funding is grants, County health and human services. Child care is available. Teach them how to interact with their kids again. Supervised visits with CPS to integrate back into family life. Their primary focus is drug and alcohol recovery specifically. Office is not closed to others for service we do bring them in and find them the resources for food or clothing or shelter. We give them information to help find the resources those working with police dept. and the HOT team can drop off at our doorstep and we will take them.

McAlister in Lemon Grove. Kiva is a residential program for women. In same building is detox. All new centers have them. Call for tour of the South Bay facility.

Rebecca Vista La Mesa: Flyers for “Welcome Saturdays” second Saturday of each month, hot breakfast, haircuts, and minor medical checks. Pass out these flyers around as resources. Getting more resources and building this. Donations of men’s clothing needed. Blankets or sleeping bags as we head into winter.  First united Methodist doing the fourth Saturday.

Interfaith shelter has started for the fall. 6 of the 12 beds were filled. Journey is host right now. Earliest the east county has opened. Vista Le Mesa over the Christmas break will actually open all day instead of just sheltering at night. Help volunteers needed call 619-463-9909. Bill has scheduled rotation – Bill Zucconi, Rotational Shelter Coordinator billz@interfaithshelter.org these are pre-screened inidividuals.

From Rebecca: I am inviting you to assist my congregation through this online sign-up page.  Because we are hosting over Christmas, we have decided to keep the Shelter open during the days on our second week (between Christmas and New Year’s).  So if you have people who are interested but wouldn’t be able to stay overnight, this might be a good way for them to get involved.  We, of course, will also need overnight hosts and dinner providers.


2.             Reflections On The U.N. International Day of Peace              Suellen Treadwell

Photos are the photos tab of the website. Different religions all get together and speak from the writings of each faith. Great article in the paper. A reporter was there for the entire event. Task force recently met to discuss the good & bad of the event. 23 groups where there to provide information which is a lot more an ever did before. Finishing touches by Suellen, thank you for a great work. It was a small miracle that we got our space. Maybe be there earlier next time. Maybe a bigger more like a festival with music and crafts more for adults and not just children. Maybe more music and food. Could do a formal request for the mayor and city council to come visit. Always thinking of ways to improve each year.

Maybe more a celebration of diversity in the community. Would be great to introduce us and publicize us a little bit more. One of the reasons for success was the permit was helpful, followed regulations.

3.             Old Business

    1. Cancer support group with our own Suellen first Friday 10am-11am at library.

4.             New Business

    1. Anne Pacheco Fair Trade Gift Faire at St Martins on October 16th was a success. About 20 vendors more than we have ever had. More people than before. Senator Joel Anderson gave a nice presentation honoring St Martins for unyielding dedication in promoting economic honesty and fairness during their 6th annual fair trade event.

                                               i.     City of La Mesa is becoming a hot bed of fair trade. Challenge the city to do something and Anne has done a great job to spread the message.

    1. Interfaith Disaster Council hosted here in La Mesa a 3-hour event titled “Introductory House of Worship Training” on preparing our house of worship for emergency or an action event. Presented by San Diego County office of Emergency Services and Red Cross. See attachments and on our website for more information www.interfaithlamesa.org
    2. Fill a bag – based out of Crosspointe Life Church. Dani Womack will be providing a list of needs list

                                               i.     Get a list from

Next Meeting – December 8th, next meeting. No meeting in November.



September 22, 2016 – (handouts from meeting – CAIR San Diego Banquet Announcement ; Haikus of Calif State Propositions ;  Cancer Support Group La Mesa  ; California Council of Churches Ballot Recommendations for November 8 2016 )

2.                La Mesa Candidates’ Forum                                     Lois/Roger Knowlton

          La Mesa First United Methodist Church

Wednesday, September 28, 2016 evening start at 6:30 meet and great until 7pm start a series of prepared questions. Candidate know general theme but do not know specific questions and they will have a chance to respond. Each allowed an opening statement and then a closing statement. No audience questions. Prepared by community outreach group from La Mesa First United Methodist.

3.             Interfaith Council’s UN Peace Day Event                     Suellen Treadwell

          Sunday, September 25, 2016      

Ready for day of peace with prayers of peace, song, crafts, other organizations. We celebrate our diversity. This is an effort of a lot of people and we are excited for a great event. Reporter came from courier to ask questions. Peace unites the religions throughout the world. Program is passed out.

4.             Islam and the Council on American-Islamic                  Harif Mohebl, Exec. Dir.

          Relations (CAIR) – San Diego Chapter                        CAIR – San Diego

                                                                                             with Aziz Purmul

What is it they do? A civil rights and liberty organization like NAACP or for organization for Japanese-American citizens. Majority of clients are from Muslim community. Their service are offered to all. Free attorney. Business of civil rights and liberty of religious liberties. Harif offered services to give message about knowing your rights as a congregation to have one of their attorneys come speak. 35 offices in 20 states. Comparatively young at 20 years old. San Diego office 11th year. Encourage mosques and community to get involved wherever possible. Always glad to meet with interfaith groups. A lot of times we think discrimination happens elsewhere but it happens right here in San Diego. Examples are a person was pushed into oncoming traffic simply because they were Muslim. Pregnant women was assaulted. Individual walked into mosque and talked about killing. Cab drivers have been assaulted. Research and bullying Muslim in school. Many Muslims work in public schools. 27% of these teachers felt that other teachers and staff discriminated. Their office found a principal called a student out about their Muslim faith. We provide cultural and development training to teach and give understanding. These kind of cases are common. If someone walks into a restaurant and are told they will not be served food for example is where we help teach, understand laws and teach to get fair treatment. Just like other civil rights movements our office taps into other good churches for help.

What is it like in San Diego? Different sects? Approximately 150,000 Muslim between two counties. 20-25 mosques in county. We have Sunnis and Shiite but majority are Sunni. Some congregations keep to themselves but are encouraged to reach out. The Somali communities often keep to themselves as they figure out cultural changes. The Syrian upcoming and Afghan community growing. Muslims are found all over the world and throughout history. Muslims come from all backgrounds and cultures, no specific color, nationality to be a part of the Muslim faith. How united are they working together? Stronger institutions and how are involved are they in the communities. They are regular professionals, good neighbors. Prior to 9/11 were a little more quiet doing their own thing but after 9/11 have been much more encouraged to be more involved in communities and mesh/support and help. Including into politics and teach education and seek protection for religious rights advocacy and be very involved. Approximately 10% of health workers are Muslim. The CAIR group has 6-8 attorneys in California. Very focused on religious freedom

Several organizations that try to combine working together. Muslim, shalom Islam is based in peace effort. Our organization CAIR open letter to ISIS gather hundreds 160 scholars refuted every claim of ISIS in classical Arabic. So they would know speaking from an Islamic tradition stating that they are wrong.

What is happening locally to help to work with youth to counter what extremism online? If you go to local mosques you will see Imam or teachers or when there is a chance we start with our own congregations and are a bit harsh with our own people to encourage to reach out to neighbors and be involved in the community and let them see what a good Muslim neighbor is. They have youth group meetings and teach youth to be very involved and to be very clear about their good opinions, talk with good friends, be open. Many other concerns in America. Suicide, gun violence in America, thousands are being injured. Muslim community has mentally illness also, members on drugs, etc and sometimes those that suffer seem to also do acts of stupidity and get broadcasted/ title as a Muslim terrorist or sympathetic. We are trying to help foster understanding internally and externally.

See attached invites for next event

If interested see web for report: MISLABELED: The Impact of School Bullying and Discrimination on California Muslim Students


5.             San Diego Interfaith Disaster Council                           John Adam

SD Interfaith Disaster County has existed since 2007, dormant since 2013. Reactivation focused on housing of worship and what they need to do similar to a business a plan in place. Holding our first training Thursday October 27th 8:30-11:30 at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints here in La Mesa at 5555 Aztec Drive. San Diego County of Emergency Services along with American Red Cross. Very introductory. Red Cross trainers will teach how to respond and what to do in disasters. To give contacts for more information. Focus on introduction to developing a disaster plan. In 2017 will move into more advanced topics of spiritual care, shelters, more in-depth next year. Invitations.

Thursday October 27th  8:30am -11:30am

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints  

5555 Aztec Drive in La Mesa

7.       Old Business

8.       New Business

a.    Suellen started a cancer survivor group that is in the library. Once a month see flyer.

9.       Next Meeting – October 27, 2016

July 28, 2016 – (handouts from meeting: Break Free Run ; International Day of Peace ; Grand Jury Homeless in East County Report; Homelessness Response City of La Mesa08072016; Article East County Homelessness; Homelessness Resource First United Methodist08072016)

  1. Recent Police/Community Tensions                                       Dani Womack Chapel for LMPD

Given recent issues, an update of what is happening here in La Mesa. Overall our officers feel the support from the community. Lots of sweets and treats and food and flowers. Outpouring of support. Still concern and caution due to national events. Hosted an event Tuesday for officers and spouse to set the current context in line with history that our nation has had similar moments in history. Taught families to recognize stress, good communication, alleviate fear. Specialized training officers came to discuss training opportunities that exist and made them aware of the extensive training officers already have.

Making sure all officers feel supported from community. Visited several churches to pray for peace in the tension situations and turmoil and unrest. Many churches have written letters of support but overall community support in La Mesa has been very high. LMPD safety and emergency preparedness fair on August

Safety fair is opportunity for families to come and rub shoulders with officers we need to spread the word how great our officers are and need to have more positive interaction opportunities. If you see them out and about please let them hear the support as best we can to counteract the barrage from the news media outlets.

2. Interfaith Prayers for America                                                Suellen Treadwell

In response to the violence that is happening in the country that it may be nice to have a prayer gathering somehow organized by this council. Prayer in the community, we are leaders, it may be nice to respond as an interfaith. This would just be for our country.

If you have thoughts to join with Suellen

3. United Nations Peace Day Task Force – An Update               Suellen Treadwell

The program is lined up, MC , presenters, Baha’i, Hindu, Christian, Muslim. Still dealing with details of tables, crafts, music and choirs dancing and singing

Sunday September the 25th,

Next meeting soon. Talk with Suellen if you can help.

The sound system is the concern, maybe negotiable.

Marketing signs and arrow direction signs. Articles in PSA for various stations. Newspapers more signs, advertising.

4.Churches Against Trafficking (CAT)                                    Rachelle Kimberling (Anne Pacheco)

This organization meets every-other month. Where next meeting the 3rd Thursday of the month. DA Summer Stephen will speak, her mostly full time job. Chris Cameron on the task force at the Nazarene church in Mission Valley at Waring Road and Mission Gorge. 6:30-8pm in evening.

5. “Break Free Run” – the Race to End Human Trafficking Rachel Kimberling                                                                                                          & Anne Pacheco

Updated info from previous presentations.

DA social research and data, medical, officers, communities as of 2015 have a full time task force to focus on this issue. Research done through Point Loma Nazarene with USD Dr Jamie Gate and Carpenter. We now know from the research that San Diego stands 12th in the nation and a billion dollar industry next to drugs. If we care about the issue we need to figure out how to engage churches and interfaith councils and community organization engage. Committees meet once a month and have action items for a 2 year.

She is vice chair, representing the County in this community subcommittee. Great to have a faith based representation.

Most often the girl start dating a boy that she does not know he is part of gang that are organized. Average for San Diego is 15 ½ years old.

Engage through education which leads to prevention

Recently on the streets seeing what is happening. Trafficking to say forced prostitution. Men seeking purchase, may not know underage, online and there is a pimp behind the deal. Unfortunately the group finds smarter and more devious ways to buy online such as All Star game and San Diego Comic-Con. On the ground law enforcement. We have a booth at convention center. Tips flyer to look for human trafficking see something do something fans passed out. Great venue for volunteers. Comic-Con had 150 volunteers 3 person each shift. Lots of opportunities for volunteers. Fans provided with capes with the slogan say something do something. Safeguarding your child against exploitation of children.

Great to see that there are forces organized to address this issue from the FBI down to get involved.

Can we point to arrests? In Vista there have been two operations busted.

At the regional level with county advisor council. 9 subcommittee those include engagement for churches out of Sacramento, 3 standard organizations. We would invite more churches to be involved and engaged there are 4 in California. Two local agencies received the money from these races. Generate hope safe house for women. Registration link and a volunteer link. Create a team and a sense of competition is a wonderful way to engage especially for youth. There will be some entertainment from Trevor Davis who was on The Voice.

If your church is interested in finding out more about the effort this is a good place to do it. There will be lots of info.

6. City of La Mesa Response To The Recommendations           Aaron Landau

Made In The June 8, 2016 San Diego County Grand Jury Report Title:  “East County Cities’ Lack of

Response To Homelessness.”

With the 24/7 media cycle. It seems footprints on the sand because news gets washed away. Homelessness is a possible outcome from recession 2008 and consequence of losing job and home and has not disappeared. Homelessness indicates something not right in the social fabric of our community. Request a county wide symposium, shelter networks, social service politician, law enforcement, San Diego city and county.  Other cities seem to be very strong. Estimated 711 number of documented homeless in El Cajon, 19 in La Mesa, Lemon Grove has 11, East County has been deemed behind on the issue of homeless. My opinion is the policy of LMPD is hope they go away. Interactions have been a little formal at times. Grand jury issue a report on recommendations. There is now a response from LMPD.

We could have a combined response

Find and attached grand jury report. Next meeting at city council Aaron will be heading again. And ensure that they continue to work on these recommendations from the county grand just report.

This report is helping the priorities of politicians to focus on these important issues.

The key is to make sure they comply with the action items that City Council.

Discussion: We as the ICLM are a service to the City rather than provide expectation to the City. Demanding change moves us into a different place as a council.

The City Manager and department heads can really make a difference. Used to have a Father Joe’s La Mesa Shelter at the time by Bank of the West.

7. Old Business

8. New Business

1. Discussion of setting up a meeting with Mayor A with Dave Merck and Aaron.

2. Roger Knowlton – Esther has recently joined community outreach group at La Mesa Methodist. Commentary from Lois as presented by Esther. It was a commentary response to the Grand Jury report. PERT providing a licensed technician 1/3 mental illness, police only agency in La Mesa, transition crisis housing and funds are needed. Encouraging council to address underlying transitional housing. La Mesa Courier has an article from Carol Biederman article in the recent issue.

3. Monthly breakfast is coming up this Saturday. Breakfast, shower. Flyer to hand out to the local homeless. 30th 10am-12pm

4. Dani Womack – Vista La Mesa Summer Lunch. There have not been the volunteers. Emails from heavens window not cost effective any more shutting down for the rest of the summer. And we reevaluate for next year.

Why is the happening? Opinions: kids may not like the food. Different chefs but it may be a location issue. Signage has been able to draw them in the past. Joan Kroc and Helix are both doing the same program. Maybe new location. Maybe go into survey low-income and see what the need is. Maybe we need to go mobile into community rooms in apartments building.

5. Aziz – we love our neighbors project. Bringing the faith together. Trying to get the community involved together. Islamophobia trying to defeat this feeling in the community. He offers lectures and will bring people to help stop the hate. Muslims are also being killed and blamed at the same time. How can we work on this together to get rid of underneath hatred? Many extremists of all faiths are difficult to stop and have been around many years. Aziz’s goal is to get neighbors to know each other. He offers to speak in any gathering where a Muslim presenter is needed.

9. Next Meeting – August 25, 2016


June 30, 2016 –

The Interfaith Council of La Mesa met on Thursday, June 30 at noon, in the Police Department Community Room, with Dave Merk, Rebecca Littlejohn, Roger Knowlton, Carol Biederman, Oliver Biederman, Aaron Landau, Thomas Bush, Parviz Mahboubi, Suellen Treadwell, Aziz Purmul, Nancy Brass and Bill Zucconi present.

Introductions were done around the table, and Dave Merk opened with prayer.

  1. Suellen Treadwell presented the work of the committee planning our International Day of Peace event.  The event will be on Sunday, Sept. 25th at 3:30 in Aztec Park.  The official UN theme this year is long and convoluted and related to the 2030 UN goals, so they are not using it literally.  Presenters from many different faiths will be asked to present a teaching from their tradition that helps to build world peace.  The committee has 1/2 of the presenters lined up already, along with people to lead crafts and activities and music.

There is some concern because in the conversation about getting the permit, the City raised the concern that the neighbors do not like noise.  Suellen is waiting to hear back about whether they will allow us to use a microphone.  If she doesn’t hear anything, we will proceed.  If they say no, Suellen will have Rebecca Littlejohn, who has arranged for the sound system in previous years, call the City and explain in more detail how not loud our event is.

The committee is meeting again today and will continue their work.  The whole Council is encouraged to promote this event among our networks and faith communities.  Here is a link to the Facebook event page.  Please pass it along!



2. Rebecca Littlejohn gave an update on the ICLM’s Summer Lunch Program, which is hosted at her church, Vista La Mesa Christian Church.  We opened last Monday (6/20), and attendance has been up and down day to day, as is normal.  Our program administrator, Heaven’s Windows, is working with a new vendor, Kitchens for Good, this year, so we’re still working out the kinks with getting kid-friendly menus.  We will have special Fun Days on July 7th (Dr. Zoolittle from the SD Zoo), July 21st (Humane Society with a guinea pig and a rabbit, on pet safety), and an End-of-Summer Carnival on August 4th.  Please invite the kids and families in your faith communities!

We need you and your folks to help out!  This is an Interfaith Council program, not just an outreach of one church, so please sign up and come volunteer.  The sign up link is here:



3. Aziz Purmul presented his idea about having a city-wide “Love Your Neighbor” Day.  People would be encouraged to get together with their neighbors, to get to know one another better, share a meal perhaps, develop stronger relationships.  It was suggested that we develop multiple ways for people to get involved.  It was discovered that there is a national “Good Neighbor” Day, which is always the 4th Sunday of September.  (That is the day of our International Day of Peace event.)  Aziz had been contemplating the last Friday of December (12/30).  He suggested having the City declare the day.  Some discussion was had about block parties, and about neighborhoods that need neighbors more being the ones least equipped to give time and resources to the relationship building.  It was decided to continue the conversation.  Thomas Bush mentioned a book called “The Art of Neighboring” which does recommend block parties.

4. Roger Knowlton read an article from the LA Times about a new effort in San Diego to raise awareness among the general public about the realities of human sex trafficking.  (A similar article was recently in the SD U-T.)

5. Rebecca Littlejohn shared a flyer about a benefit concert at her church, which will provide donations for Veterans Village and Syrian refugees.  (See attached flyer.)

6. Carol Biederman is working on an article for the La Mesa Courier about what various congregations and organizations are doing for the homeless.  She asked anyone whose faith community is doing work of this kind to let her know so she can include you.  (carolbiederman@gmail.com)

7. Aaron Landau raised a discussion about what the ICLM is and is for.  He suggested that we narrow our focus to homelessness, in recognition of where our main focus already is and the unanimity around that issue (unlike others) that exists across traditions.  Others felt that there was no reason to limit the focus of the group, but that a priority issue, for a particular period of time might be a good idea (which would be homelessness, at the moment).  Our role within the community, and a potentially increasing role for advocacy, suggests other discussions about structure and even meeting place.  This discussion was tabled for our next meeting.

8. Thomas Bush shared that he is working with some folks who train people how to get involved in their communities, and a new cohort will be starting in the fall.  Contact him for more information.

The meeting adjourned around 1:20 pm.

Minutes respectfully submitted by Rebecca Littlejohn

May 26, 2016 – (handouts from meeting LMPD Peer Support Fundraiser ; summer lunch program ; used backpack collection; E-cigarettes ; smoke-free outdoor dining ; food distribution flyer current

  1. Welcome/Introductions/Prayer                         Rebecca Littlejohn, (Filling in for David Merk)
  2. Additional Items for agenda
  3. Update Housing for Homeless                          Rebecca Littlejohn
    1. Wonderful new family has been placed, yeah.
    2. There is a need for a couch, dresser and a microwave. Please contact Rebecca
  4. International Day of Peace                                         Form Planning Committee
    1. Official day is Sept 21st so groups decided we will do Sunday September 25th
    2. Has gone very well in years past. Added arts and crafts with a few adjustments over the years. Crafts activities included pinwheels, bracelets, poster for peace, clowns for peace, children’s choirs, singing groups.
    3. Last about 1 ½ hours.
    4. Suellen will be the chair. Who would like to be on the committee?
    5. Looking for singing groups.
    6. Art will put a place mark with the city to reserve park/permit from 2pm – 6pm. We will need to file appropriate permit paperwork and $$
  5. Summer Lunch Program
    1. 4th year running. Lunch to those children under 18 years old in need during the summer break. Partner with Heaven’s Window out of New Beginning Baptist church who provides food and we just need volunteers from our congregations to help serve the food.
    2. Opens June 20th through summer until August 10th
    3. Goal is to provide lunch for 18 and under. Free lunch at school but during summertime don’t have the same resources
    4. Captains training is next Tuesday the 31st at 6pm at Vista La Mesa. A captain is a person that is organized to commit one week at a time, know paperwork which gets submitted back to USDA. Training takes time for a captain so they need so they need to commit a week.
    5. Then 2-3 other volunteers to serve and help the kids.
    6. Ongoing activities will be present: bubbles, games, books are there. Four “fun days” on every other Thursday. Please recommend any one that can do “fun things”, example magicians, clowns, anything.
    7. This year volunteers will be required to list your faith community leader as a contact person from your congregation.
    8. See attached flyer
    9. Link for online volunteer registration is: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/8050548a4a62caa8-iclm
    10. Adults always hang around and there will be a need for donated food also such as sandwich supplies, chips, macaroni salad, etc to share with the parents, grandparents
  6. Update on North America Interfaith Network (NAIN) 2017 Interfaith Conference in San Diego.
    1. Next meeting is Saturday June 4, 2016 12:00 to 3:00pm
    2. Location is 4741 Mt Abernathy Ave, SD 92117 (LDS Church Building)
    3. Looking for more event planning committee members to attend.
    4. This will be the 28th annual conference.
    5. A letter from the ICLM to Mayor Arapostathis in support Interfaith Week 2017 will be formulated for review by council next month
  7. Discussion of role on low-income housing                  Rebecca Littlejohn
    1. Can we play a role on what needs to be done?
    2. Learn for ourselves, assessment, find out what is going on according to data. There is not much housing available.
    3. Then see if there is more that we can do to help/promote that movement
    4. Those with a past record of eviction are a risk.
    5. How can there be an assurance to give second chance to those that have been evicted before. Even if there is inventory maybe not allowed because of past troubles.
    6. Jurisdictions need to get involved. We cannot front money but promote and identify successful activities. Examples recently are $2 billion bond measure for City of LA to get more help. Poway bought a motel to get low-income. San Marcos has done similar.
    7. We are thinking of focusing on advocacy issues.
    8. Quality of life is very strongly based on homeless, mental illness, harassing people that walk on the streets.
    9. Let’s start by learning who is already advocating for these things in the county.
    10. Rebecca will find a good expert/advocate to present in a future meeting.
    11. Research what other cities have done. Austin has place tiny homes on a lot for ~$250 a month rent.
    12. The league of California cities. Are there model samples and what are they are doing? Art Madrid will follow up.


  1. Maxine Lynch – La Mesa Police Department
    1. Partner with Uptown faith community for the homeless. La Mesa City Employees Association is holding a used backpack collection.
  1. Backpacks can be dropped off at La Mesa Police Dept to Maxine Lynch
  2. See flyer for more detail.
    1. Police Department Peer Support team is there to assist first responders in supporting after traumatic calls they go on.
  1. Sponsoring a chili cook-off fundraiser.
  2. Enter and participate – please print and pass out the attached flyer and give to members.

iii.     Call Maxine directly for those that would like to enter their chili. (619) 667-7547

  1. See flyer


  1. Fill a Bag Feed a Child update                         Dani Womack
    1. Purpose is to coordinate with the schools to cover food for Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays to fill the gaps. One bag is breakfast and lunch for that child and there is usually enough to help the whole family.
    2. Dani is doing a Marathon fundraiser happening June 5th all proceeds go to this fundraiser. Good luck Dani!
    3. Please add one item for each month, manageable sizes, for lunch bags
    4. Goal for 500 bags. All La Mesa schools.
    5. Favorite foods:
  1. Chili
  2. Peanut butter are always in high demand

iii.     Monthly focus for your congregation

  1. Chili                           May
  2. Pasta                         June
  3. Spaghetti Sauce         July
  4. Hardy Soup                August
  5. Peanut Butter  September
  6. Beans                        October
  7. Cereal                        November
  8. Breakfast Bars
  9. Oatmeal
  10. Complete Pancake Mix
  11. Granola Bars/snacks
  12. Crackers
  13. Rice
  14. Beans
  15. Tortillas (But these cannot be purchased ahead a time, I will get them at the end) Crackers Mac n cheese


  1. Commission on Substance Abuse           Dani Womack Crosspointe Church
    1. E-cigarettes – See flyer for true dangers
    2. Smoke free outdoor dining here in La Mesa.
    3. The goal is for advocacy to make La Mesa more smoke free and enjoyable.


  1. Gun Advocacy –                                     LaVern Olberding
    1. Video Gun, greed and the NRA
    2. The have a new video that is now available.
    3. The video is available for you to get or borrow. 5 different vignettes including domestic violence, drive by shootings, suicide, the shooting in Aurora, Colorado.
    4. Brave New Films our of Culver City


  1. Interfaith Shelter Network                       Bill Zucconi
    1. Rapid Rehousing funds that were provided for unincorporated areas have all been used up.
    2. Good but out and it does not look like it will be renewed next year.
    3. We will work with Bill to see if there are referrals from his organization that fit into our Housing for Homeless Students criteria which includes student in La Mesa-Spring Valley SD and ability to cover monthly costs, etc.


  1. Food Assistance Flyers                          Anne Pacheco
    1. Anne will be reviewing the flyer from our website to make changes.
    2. Please review attached flyer and make any corrections or additons and send over to Anne for inclusion in the update.
    3. Email to apacheco@stmartinacademy.org


  1. Discussion of the direction of the ICLM organization     Art Madrid
    1. Are we willing to attack societal issues
    2. Reader magazine best read magazine in all county
  1. Last 10 pages are all marijuana shops, some illegal inside of La Mesa.
  2. Will we get involved? Will we use our stationary to press city officials to enforce the city ordinances? Guns, smoking, etc.

iii.     As a group we will need to have more direction as to what our interest is an organization.

  1. We need to have an identity conversation as a group.
  2. Per Art: Elected officials #1 focus should be on safety
  3. We as citizens are to hold those officials accountable

vii.     Are we willing to engage?

viii.     Future discussion as direction.


  1. Next meeting changed to June 30th instead of June 23rd

April 28, 2016- (Handouts from meeting NAIN Upcoming June 4th Meeting Homeless Resource)

  1. Welcome/Introductions/Prayer                         Rebecca Littlejohn (Filling in for David Merk)
  2. Update on La Mesa Schools                            Bruce Crenshaw
    1. Families are getting finding from our ministry and from Interfaith Shelter Network. Vacancy rate is very low in East County. Landlords are being more selective.
    2. There are several that are following up with the families to make sure all is well.
    3. Family from Reno is doing well.
    4. County is to provide many necessities to get kids in school, remove barriers including bus passes for kids and parent. ($36 student and $72 for adults).
    5. Question: how aware is the School Board of the homeless situation in the District. Updates have not been given for a while. 500 students is the approximate guess of homeless in the District out of 12,000 kids, maybe more.
    6. What else happening. Homeless grant with Santee District so there is a part time Jennifer Smith social worker between the two districts. Very helpful to have more people. Families still need to do a lot of work to afford monthly payments, don’t have work, budgeting skills.
    7. East County Transitional Living Center. Closely working because they do take families in.
    8. CASA program. Christina Hicks clothing food bank that at Kempton elementary school in a room. Families are referred there for clothes, some food. Christina the founder as a volunteer, she is stepping away along with Wendy Newmark to figure out how to keep it going. Need to organize a little more to get the word out. An idea is to have certain times open. Need donations of used clothes, shoes, new underwear and socks.
    9. Maybe have a project to lost and found from all the schools to wash and fold and provide to CASA. Maybe a 6-grade project.
    10. Volunteers are needed for CASA shelving to provide food.
    11. Children’s Fund is accessible through CASA program is a part of that for emergency funding for that.
  3. Report on NAIN Interfaith Gathering                        LaVern Olberding
    1. LaVern was able to attend
    2. Annual event for 27 years. San Diego will be the 28th annual. Lots of planning still needed. Volunteers needed to help with their area of expertise. Food committee if you have catering skills, or transportation focus. Most speakers are already confirmed. Photography, etc.
    3. Looking for volunteers that can give us good solid advise
    4. **See and copy list from flyer**
    5. Most interfaith have been interfaith dialogue and are doing more outreach/service.
    6. Our commitment as “Interfaith Council of La Mesa” is that we approve and support this event and involves advertising out our mailing list of members in the La Mesa area. We cannot commit to donations or commit specific number of volunteers.
    7. Come to next meeting
  4. Discussion of ICLM’s involvement in San Diego interfaith movement
  5. Summer Lunch Program                                   Rebecca Littlejohn
    1. Captains Training Meeting – Tuesday, May 31st, 6 pm at VLMCC
    2. Captains are committed to one week at a time. Captain is the leader for the other volunteers. We are looking for 7 captains, one for each week of summer.
    3. Start June 20th. Please send volunteers, we will follow up with each volunteer’s congregation.
    4. Online sign-up is coming soon. They must sign up rather than just walk in to volunteer.
  6. Old Business
  7. New Business
    1. Carol from First United Methodist – Help from other churches from St Martins showers and breakfast on Saturday morning once a month. Besides breakfast and showers a new addition will be there from county health service to do a basic check. Maybe adding a barber later.
    2. There is a list of the people in need **Post**
    3. Recommendation to visit the Mormon Battalion Historical Site in Old Town. Great tour about the founding of San Diego.
  8. Next Meeting – May 26, 2016

March 31, 2016 –

Handouts from meeting – NAIN Conference Overview Power Point PresentationNorth America Interfaith Conference Info and NAIN June 2016 Meeting ; Dr Kinnammon; City of La Mesa Needs Drive

  1. Fill-A-Bag                                                         Dani Womack
    1. Gearing up early for this in conjunction with the schools. The idea is to provide breakfast and lunch items kids can eat or make at home for Thanksgiving and Christmas break. Trying to get a jump start. Looking for specific items and will take a specific item per Sunday to stock up on this food.
    2. Invite each church to take a Sunday to do a “peanut butter drive” next month pasta, etc. If this is something you would consider please see list below for items of food needed.
    3. How was the result last year? We fell a little short on donations. Others had to donate to cash to make up the shortfall.
    4. Working specifically with La Mesa Arts Academy and they fill the bags. Office managers in each of the La Mesa Schools are contacted for a count of how many bags they need. Schools include La Mesa Dale, Helix, High School, and Parkway Middle School.
    5. Goal of 500 bags.
    6. Below please find a list of the food items that we put in the “Fill a Bag” bags.  I have put suggested months by the ones where church donations would be the most helpful.
      1. Chili                           May
      2. Pasta                         June
      3. Spaghetti Sauce         July
      4. Hardy Soup                August
      5. Peanut Butter  September
      6. Beans                        October
      7. Cereal                        November
      8. Breakfast Bars
      9. Oatmeal
      10. Complete Pancake Mix
      11. Granola Bars/snacks
      12. Crackers
      13. Rice
      14. Beans
      15. Tortillas (But these cannot be purchased ahead a time, I will get them at the end) Crackers Mac n cheese
  2. Housing For Homeless Students –                     Rebecca Littlejohn
    1. Update – No recent activity at this time. Always looking for those that can screen and or donate to this cause for providing deposits for stable housing for homeless students.
  3. Information about Mental Health First Aid          Dani Womack
    1. Training
    2. County of San Diego received a grant. The goal is to provide training for groups that provide certified training. Warning factors and symptoms for all sorts of mental health issues like panic attacks, bi-polar, substance abuse and suicide. 8 hour training. Warning sign and symptoms. A 5-step model to render first assistance to that person
    3. May 28th, completely free of charge at Crosspointe church. Target audience is between 15-25 attendants.
    4. Pastors should be trained, church staff, those that interact with prayer requests or are in some sort of leadership position. Send a representative. Should be over 16 years of age.
    5. If your church wants to host one please contact Dani to get a point of contact with the County
  4. LMSVSD CASA Program                                  Bruce Crenshaw (could not attend)
    1. Key person for CASA is leaving. We will get a report in April to see if there is a need for help to keep this program going.
  5. Summer Lunch Program                                   Rebecca Littlejohn
    1. Coming up. We will need to get more volunteers to be present at the lunches. Activities have been organized as things to do after they are finished eating. Captains are needed who do some paperwork and take on a leadership role. There will be a training meeting for those that are interested.
    2. Maybe opening the 20th of June.
  6. National Interfaith Conference (2017)                Rev. Dr. Steve Albert & SD Interfaith Collaboration
    1. Founders of the Poway Interfaith Team. Involved with the National Interfaith Network.
    2. Have written interfaith booklet. Get people together to learn about each other. Abigail has spoken Parliament of world religions. Which happens every 5 years and now moving to every 2-3 years.
    3. Interfaith calendar as a present.
    4. Working with 7 different interfaith councils in San Diego to help organize this event in 2017. Speakers will be targeted from San Diego. Includes major speaker and then workshops. Evening events including Balboa Park organ Pavilion.
    5. San Diego Mayor Kevin involved and supporting.
    6. 8 of the 18 mayors so far will send proclamations that their whole city will treat all equally from other backgrounds.
    7. Interfaith Awareness Week
    8. See slide show presentation.
    9. This will only be possible through volunteer efforts. Who knows busing contact? Who can register at the front desk?
    10. Many are required to get CEU’s is that possible?
  1.       Old Business


  1. New Business
    1. Several items brought forward, please see attachments for more information.
    2. St Martin of Tours was featured on the national magazine, they were chosen for their work on Fair Trade.
    3.  First United Methodist church is seeing success with ministry to homeless. Once a month offering showers, clean clothes, underwear.
    4. Maxine introduced Uptown faith community clothing center. This is a good source for Backpacks are desperately needed. May/June will be collection time.
    5. St Paul’s Cathedral, in downtown San Diego, will be offering a healing service for those affected by clergy misconduct on May 14th at 5pm.
  2. Next Meeting – April 28, 2016
    1. David will be gone and Rebecca will chair for the next two months.

February 25, 2016 –

                 Handouts from the meeting: Homeless Bios in La Mesa St Martin of Tours Presentation Schedule Holy Week Feet Washing Event March 24th SDRIC Brochure and Agenda Feb 2016 Meeting NAIN Meet & Greet Between Interfaith Councils fo San Diego

    1. Welcome/Introductions
      1. Additional Items To Be Discussed
      2. Housing For Homeless Students                      Bruce Crenshaw – Rebecca Littlejohn
        1. A screening and help has been provided for a new family in the area that recently relocated. Four kids including twins. Working on some everyday items that they still need. She found a place that takes her section 8 rent but did not have savings to have deposit money. Rent and deposit were partially covered. She has job interviews lined up.
        2. This was the first time for official process of check etc. with the new account and co-signer and everything worked. Moving in today. Very exciting. A good success story with this family.
        3. A few needs are still present. Beds, one for her and then one for the twins, toddlers. All need bedding, dishes and pots and pans. Who can help and provide. Contact Rebecca Littlejohn if you can help.
        4. Please consider doing fundraisers for this ministry of our La Mesa Interfaith council.
        5. We need more screeners especially those who speak Spanish.
        6. Comment: Interfaith Shelter Network (Bill Zucconi) has rapid re-housing group that received a sub-grant from Escondido. Received a $60,000 grant. Housing has to be unincorporated areas. Covers deposits, move in costs, cost of mover
      3. National Council of Churches and the World Michael Kinnamon
        1. Member of Vista La Mesa, retired seminary professor. Previously on world council in Geneva Switzerland then was the head secretary for the US National Council. Includes a whole host of churches including main line churches, historic black churches, recent immigrant churches and all of the orthodox churches in the United States. US council, Jewish, Islamic council. Focused on interfaith. Ecumenical (building up of relationships between) the effort was focused on Christians moving together to be one body of Christ. Council of churches focused much of the effort is moving towards one body of Christ. Parts of San Diego has week of prayer for Christian unity. SDRIC meeting Tuesday was focused on civil discourse but ecumenical councils have been doing this for so many years. The interfaith movement is successful on moving forward these discussions. Christians believe we belong to bring us together as a claim to each other. Our unity is not synonymous as agreement. We can still disagree with one another without getting up and leaving
        2. This is a renewal movement. This allows us to share with each other. What can their faith teach to us about needs in the community? Being ecumenical does not mean doctrinal agreement. Relationships can be improved by gifts from each other. Prayer should be at the center for all of this. Not for our own sake but for the sake of the world as to what we can be together as a group rather than individually.
        3. Moving towards the day we are able to share sacraments together. Recognizing the one church baptism is accepted by other faiths, prayer for each other by name.
        4. Assyrian church of the east are new ecumenical partners in the US council.
        5. Advocacy of religious freedoms is also important. Advocacy is needed along with the components of service.
        6. Important to build relationships and service at the same time. Good to do service but remember the relationships
      4. Report on San Diego Regional Interfaith Collaborative – Lane, Rebecca, Anne
        1. Strong organization, great meeting, lots of our council were there and many from East County.
        2. There is a good reason for our members to continue to attend the semi-annual lunches.
        3. Next meeting Tuesday September 27th, 2016.
        4. See brochure about the organization and agenda of February 23, 201
    1. Future Discussions for agenda     Lane Smith                                                                                                           A. Membership and communication drive – bring in more members, organizations. Also get more “point of contact” information for each church or organization.                                                                                                B. Determining through discussion ICLM priorities. Previous top four focus topics were:

1. Schools

2. Homelessnes

3. Service

4. Summer lunch program

Since then we have added

                              5. International day of peace

                              6. The Housing for Homeless Students

  1. New Business
    1. Bill Zucconi – Interfaith Shelter Network will be honored soon on KOGO radio. Awardwill be given live then a taping of ½ hour program. Do not know times yet. It will go out to help recruit more churches for what they do.
      1. The North American Interfaith Network will be here in San Diego at UCSD on August 6-10 2017. This week in August 2017 will be declared Interfaith Week in San Diego. Six of the county mayors already on board. Our Interfaith Council of La Mesa has been invited to join with the 6 other interfaith organizations in the county to help plan this event. See flyer for the first meet and greet meeting on Saturday April 9, 2016 1:00pm-3:00pm.
      2. Change of date for next meeting due to Maundy Thursday meeting will be March 31st.

8. Next Meeting – March 24, 2016 changed to March 31, 2016 12:00pm


January 28, 2016

Handouts from meeting:ICLM – January 28 2016 Minutes ; Marijuana Concerns ; Housing for Homeless Students ; Homelessness Aaron Landau ; Fair Trade Packet

1. Effects of Legalization of Marijuana – Lorenzo Higley
On Communities Community Action Service Advocacy
Many concerns about upcoming ballot initiatives coming to California. Their organization will help educate your congregations on what the initiatives mean and how to handle the questions surrounding the debates.
Please see the attachments of handouts given during the presentation. The La Mesa City Council did vote to approve two new ordinances affirming the law that no sale or cultivation or delivery of marijuana can happen within the city limits. The state has agreed that cities have local abilities to assert these laws and ordinances.
It was noted in the Reader magazine that there are dozens of dispensaries advertising that are around the city limits. This will be a continuing battle. There are more health concerns than originally known. The human brain does not fully mature until 25 so early users of marijuana can severely slow their own development. There are studies that show links between users and mental illness. Colorado is having many new struggles with their newly adopted laws including driving while under the influence. Also cultivating in California is a huge drain on water resources while we have food farms closing because of the drought.
Please see the attached handouts associated with this presentation.
2. Housing For Homeless Students Rebecca Littlejohn
Background: this program is to support those families with children in the La Mesa-Spring Valley school district that are considered homeless whether that is living in a car, or doubled up at a friend’s house. We provide deposit and first month so they can have a stable place to live. The family covers their housing costs month to month this program just provides the kick start for stable housing.
The program is going very well but still looking for about 12-15 volunteers that can be trained on how to screen families. Looking for Spanish speaking volunteers also. The bank account is working and has sufficient for maybe 3-4 families right now. Help is also need for ongoing family budgeting mentors to assist the family long term to make good financial decisions.
3. The Homeless in San Diego County Aaron Landau
This a huge problem in San Diego County, not just the City of San Diego. It affects all the local cities and there needs to be more collaboration to succeed. Aaron made a presentation during public comment time during the last City Council meeting suggesting to the City officials to take this problem seriously and be a spark to gather a coalition of cities, resources, organizations for homeless and concerned citizens that can really contribute to a dialogue of how best to address the situation throughout the county.
Please see attached written remarks and invitation form Aaron to the City of La Mesa leadership
4. Fair Trade Congregations and Schools Anne Pacheco
In La Mesa & San Diego
Please see attached information on Fair Trade. This is an ongoing effort that is so vital and really gaining momentum throughout the world. It is not just fair trade coffee but so many other products that are showing up more and more in our local stores.
We watched a powerful video on the chocolate trade http://vimeo.com/20074856
5. Old Business
6. New Business
a. The idea of an Emergency Preparedness Fair for the City of La Mesa was brought up for support. Unanimous support from those present. Suggestion made to maybe coordinate our efforts and manpower behind the annual National Night Out event at the La Mesa Police Headquarters in August. This primarily crime focused campaign has an emergency preparedness component as part of the event and maybe we can invite more experts and assist with advertising and displays at the event.
b. More that we can do on homelessness. TO be discussed at future meetings.
9. Next Meeting – February 25, 2016

September 24, 2015

  1. Refugees       Ute Maschke, Ph.D  Refugee Services Catholic Charities Acculturation Supervisor                                                  In charge of workshops educational program to help new comers into San Diego to get acculturated. While maintaining their own identities, regardless of faith religion, cultural background. Interactional rescues Jewish family services from day of arrival up to five years. Most activity is for 6-to 12 months. Most often directed where to go by government, usually to where other refugees’ country are located. This is why we have so many Iraqi in San Diego. Agencies are Reception & Placement (R&P Grant) Wilson-Fish employment grant program from government. Match grant from US congress of catholic bishops. There are sub-grants that cover some administrative costs but Catholic Charities covers the bulk of costs of these administrative costs. Money for refugee solely to the refugee, not to administration. $1,200 per person towards rent, basic needs. When arrive in San Diego they must do a basic health exam and blood work. All are covered by Medical for first 8 months. If major health issue can be sent to specific location in the US. Children get vaccinations right away. In first 30-90 days refugees receive core service, social security, food stamps, medical facilities, introduction ot health care system, English language schools. In house holistic approach to living in this culture and specifically to San Diego. These are interactive workshops. How to use public transportation, register children in public schools, police officers come into to explain laws of society, medical experts also come to explain healthcare system. 30-90 days include employment services, with children go to cal-works and participate there. In-house service for employment within Catholic Charities. Some cash assistance available form Catholic Charities. The focus is to get them into work as quickly as possible. Some come with skills and many do not. Many come with 5-grade level of education, a small percentage are illiterate. About 20% are highly qualified doctors, dentist, most often from Iraq. Do you receive County funds? Only for the health benefits. Each of the four primary agencies is average of 800. Security clearances may limit the number of refugees that come. About 50% are Iraqis, next is Cubans (they get their green cards very quickly. Permanent residence is usually guaranteed, they just have to go through the conference. We received some Syrians, in California, 142 last year, 50 in San Diego. The Syrian community here is small but presume there will be an increase this next year but not a big influx. Total each year in US is 70,000, which is 33% Middle East, most Iraq. Last year democratic republic of conga, some from Southeast Asia. Few from former soviet republics. This year they raised by 10,000 and eventually the goal is to get to 120,000 a year. There is a backlog in certain countries such as Turkey and this is frequently due to security clearances in certain countries. Catholic Charites does not expect more than 400 a year from Syria. Catholic Charities does not work with undocumented immigrants. Location is determined by the government and they are typically allowed to. Catholic Charities is always looking for affordable housing inside of City of San Diego. Refugees don’t have credit history and landlords don’t often have desire to work with refugees. No temporary housing is available at Catholic Charities so landlords and housing have to be in place before the refugees arrive. The housing situation is the biggest challenge here in San Diego. The biggest challenge is the transition to a new culture over the first three months. They are assessed for mental concerns also during this traumatic transition in their life. Chronis stress and anxiety is most common that is address through workshops on stress reduction, meditation, yoga…the staff are not currently highly trained in deep disorders or grief counselors. Refugees are survivors and the goal is to help them be independent as quickly is possible. Is there help from local churches? Unknown specifically some provide English teaching, some provide prayer groups at churches and mosques to get them resources and community connections. Biggest need is for human beings mentoring, how to navigate something new, how to cash a check. Time and human contact, volunteers is biggest need. There is a volunteer program and coordinator to help pair volunteers with needs within the organization. Group workshops feedback is great resource to teach each other from a more senior refugees. Financial needs are always there. Nine non-profits to resettle refugees. Of those nine four are here in San Diego. So if a 1,000 come in each of the 9 get the same amount. The agency can then chose the best location within their organization. Church World Service is one of the nine. Deciding factors is there a community that can help serve the refugees, is it too big of a refugee group. Arrvival numbers can be found at sdrefugeeforum.org. Some fall through the cracks but they are Stop by and see Ute for a tour.
    1. There is church in National City that helps the refugees plant a garden, they can then sell for money, more than that it lifts the depression, gives them something to do, gives them contact, have them.
      1. 4575 A Mission Gorge Place
      2. Section for refugee services – excited to participate
    2. Housing For Homeless Students                                 Dani Womack
      1. Overview – program that the interfaith council took from first Methodist working though Bruce Crenshaw looking for families with homeless families and double up have income to pay rent but final barrier is the security deposit. Very common. He sends referral and we screen, first united is still doing the screening, bank account is set up and officially opened.
      2. Two interviews since school has started. First did not work out and second is ongoing.
      3. Any checks should be written to LMACC La Mesa Assembly Community Concern.
      4. Screening volunteer training will happen here in the near future. Rebecca has folders and need volunteers that are fluent in Spanish. Need help from those that would like to work in this ministry that speak Spanish. Get pastorbecky@yahoo.com Need to grow this team. Need to have at least two people to join the chair for each interview. Criteria is to be able to cover costs ongoing for rent. Cashier’s check or money order or is often the request.
    3. International Day of Peace 2015                                 Suellen Treadwell          Final Report              Baha’i
      1. Great event, see pictures on the website
    4. Fair Trade Gift Faire Event, La Mesa                          Anne Pacheco  St Martin’s
      1. Annual is in La Mesa, largest in San Diego. See flyers for church bulletins       For a better world magazine link to put on website. Great effort for our City.
      2. On the website also. 200-300 attendees and variety of companies.
    5. “Hospice Sabbath”                                                      Donna-Marie Terranova
      1. Share about this program started by national hospice share organization month of November is hospice month. Any Sabbath service in month of November. Faith communities can educate the parishioners. Debunk the myth. Elizabeth hospice as a grief counselor. See flyers. Donna-Marie is willing to get message and bulletin announcement, a reflection service, before the holidays, help debunk any myths she can help explain resources available. Has only perinatal and pediatric hospice and veterans program and she can help if there are any needs within your community. Can train in grief counselors. Can help out with any ideas for hospice-Sabbath. Elizabeth hospice position it does not support the endo fo life bill on Governor’s Gerry Brown desk right now. There are many advanced directives, living will, how to get your paperwork in order when the emergency arises.
    6. New Business- Spiritual care at Sharp Grossmont. Have some of those passes Reverend Judy Ray. Chaplain can offer cafeteria and buss pass.
    7. Thomas Bush. Tuesday morning new bishop for San Diego holding a gathering on October 27th Building Bridges
    8. Is there a chance for discounts tickets monthly passes with MTS? Discount for seniors, disabilities or for medical. David and Anne will take it on.
    9. Next Meeting – October 22, 2015

August 27, 2015

  1. Review Agenda for Additional Items To Be Discussed: Bill Zucconi, John Adams and Dani Womack requested to speak briefly at the end of the meeting.
    1. Housing for Homeless Students – Rebecca Littlejohn and Dani Womack
      1. The bank account is expected to be opened next week. Checks may be made out to LMACC (La Mesa Assembly Community Concerns). Checks have been made out to Crosspointe Church can still be accepted.
      2. Reminder – the Housing for Homeless Students program has been created to assist families of homeless students in La Mesa, in cooperation with the La Mesa School District. Funds are distributed to families who cannot afford to pay the security deposit on an apartment. Applicants are carefully screened, both by the school district and the screening team. A training for members of the screening team will be held directly after the next Interfaith Council meeting. A person serving on the team would be on call to do interviews and would follow up with the family during the year. The aim is to have a pool of twelve people. There were five or six people at the last training.
    2. Summer Lunch Program, Final Report – Rebecca Littlejohn
      1. The debriefing hasn’t been held yet, so the final report is not ready. There were a lot of volunteers this year from more than eight churches. It is hoped that activities can be increased next year; creative, flexible people are needed for those roles.
    3. UN International Day of Peace, Update/Status – Suellen Treadwell
      1. This is the second year that the La Mesa Interfaith Council is sponsoring this event. It will be held at Aztec Park in La Mesa, Sunday, September 20, 3:30 – 4:00 pm. From 3:30 – 4:00, there will be crafts, games, clowns and a magician. The program starts at 4:00 and includes readings – most by youth – from different faith traditions, such as Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, the Baha’i Faith, Native American and Christianity. There will also be choirs from different churches.
      2. Anne Pacheco distributed the latest flyer, which will be posted on the La Mesa Interfaith Council website. KPBS did a great job posting the event; an article also appeared in Southern Cross, which is widely distributed. Nancy Ryan wrote an article which will appear in the next La Mesa Courier.
      3. Rebecca said that the sound system may not be available that day. She and Dani offered canopies for use at the event.
    4. New Earth Ministries for Women and Pacem in Terris Spiritual Renewal Center – Donna-Marie Terranova
      1. New Earth Ministries for Women provides pastoral counseling for women on a wide range of issues such as illness, relationships. It is grounded in Christian spirituality but is open to people of all faith traditions.
      2. The Pacem in Terris Spiritual Renewal Center is a ministry that offers retreats, courses, seminars and other activities.
      3. Both these ministries are now in La Mesa at Vista La Mesa Christian Church.
      4. There will be a fundraising concert for this 501c3 on Sunday, September 13, 3:00 – 4:00 pm at Vista Church.
      5. A six-week bereavement program will be offered at St. Martin of Tours Church in September and October.
    5. United Scholar Academy – Kathy Mellor
      1. The first paragraph of Ms. Mellor’s email was read. The United Scholar Academy is a commonwealth school which services homeschool families in San Diego. They are in need of a building to rent and are hoping that a church in the La Mesa area will be available. Further details are in the email.
    6. Old Business
      1. Bill Zucconi of the Interfaith Shelter Network
        1. A training for volunteer coordinators for the Rotational Shelter program will be held on September 19, from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm at the Chinese Community Church in Tierrasanta.
        2. An annual fundraising event will be held on October 3 at the same location.
        3. The Rotational Shelter program is in need of more churches to volunteer to host; the ultimate goal is to be able to help the homeless on a year-round basis.
        4. A location – church or other organization – in Lakeside is desperately needed, as the program may lose funding if one is not found.
      2. John Adam of the San Diego Regional Interfaith Collaborative
        1. There will be a meeting on September 11 with David Myers of the Department of Homeland Security Center for Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster).
        2. A meeting to reactivate the San Diego Interfaith Disaster Council will be held on September 26 or 27.
        3. An Interfaith Climate Change Forum will be held at St. Paul’s Cathedral, San Diego, on September 24 at 6:30 pm.
      3. Dani Womack encouraged churches to use the services of the Grossmont Union High School Transitions program. There are many jobs that the volunteers do and it is all free of charge.
    7. Items to be discussed at September meeting
      1. David Merk suggested that the Council identify issues that we want to pursue and possibly have speakers come to the meetings to speak on these issues. Several ideas were offered:
        1. Invite a new member of the Vista La Mesa Christian Church to speak on the history of ecumenism or current ecumenism.
        2. Find organizations in La Mesa that would be good sources for our congregations, such as Center for Community Solutions, which deals with domestic violence.
        3. Invite someone working with refugees to speak on this issue, which is currently much in the news.
        4. Rebecca Littlejohn suggested that we have a link on the website to different support groups at our churches, such as Gamblers Anonymous. Marie could send out an email requesting information from the churches on their programs being offered, date, venue, time, and Lane could possibly add a link to the website.
        5. LaVern Olberding and Anne Pacheco described a program called Build a Miracle. With financial and hands-on support, homes are built in Mexico to help families and transform neighborhoods.
        6. Art Madrid encouraged greater interaction with organizations in La Mesa, such as support for the Lions Club eyeglass recycling program. He also noted that La Mesa is expected to experience heavy rains next winter, possibly resulting in floods, so we may wish to keep our congregations informed.

7. Next Meeting – September 24, 2015

    1. David Merk reported that the next meeting will be at a different venue, probably Journey Community Church since the Police Department needs use of the meeting room that day.



July 30, 2015 – Monthly Meeting Minute

1. Guest Speaker: Police Chief Walt Vasquez

  1. The department is always try to maintain a high level of respect in La Mesa. Strong focus on connecting with citizens, fostering relationships. Following up on citizen complaints, meet the citizens to overcome any challenges. Respect is there with citizens but constantly working to improve.
    1. Questions –discussions:
    2. Police body cameras are not in place in La Mesa. There is a national debate in progress. Monitoring the debate, following costs for equipment and then cost of video storage and maintenance.
    3. National Night Out – August 4th 6pm-8pm – New location, press release went out today. Target garden center area under construction so event will be held at La Mesa Police Department headquarters. That night they will be visiting 15 neighborhoods. Fire department with Heartland and emergency preparedness with Mona Freels. Crime prevention techniques will also be discussed.
    4. Social media is a key. Will continue press release usage, Nixle, improving La Mesa Police Website. Looking more twitter, Facebook other venues.
    5. What is philosophy on marijuana dispensaries, there are sites on the perimeter of La Mesa? Advice if there is a concern, if you are hesitant, please call because our role is to serve the public. There was a specific problem mentioned. Chief Vasquez will check this out and report back.

2. Housing For Homeless Students – Update/Status

  1. The bank account with Crosspointe has proven difficult but we are close to having success. There is a lull of need and communication only because of summer time break but school will be starting up in August.
    1. Several checks are ready to be donated to this account so we need to get moving forward with the account as quickly as possible.
    2. Make checks out to LMACC for right now. This is a Crosspointe that can be used.

3. Summer Lunch Program – Update/Status                         Rebecca Littlejohn

  1. Going very well. Many more volunteers from so many other churches has made this summer so much better.
    1. More volunteers have been coming in. With so many there will be more information and background check with congregation leadership. An identification will be required in the future.
    2. A primary variable is the attendance of kids. Sometimes we have 3 kids and other days 15 kids.
    3. A joy to be able to serve these children and families not matter how many show up. Bringing the various faith based organizations and churches together to serve in La Mesa is a key goal of the program.


4. International Day of Peace 2015 – Update/Status             Suellen Treadwell

  1. Meetings have been progressing towards the event in September.
    1. Please put out the message to your congregations to invite youth and adults to provide artwork. Artwork to be provided day of the event. See www.interfaithlamesa.org for flyer and info.
    2. Still confirming final youth speakers
    3. Next meeting is August 20th 4pm at Church of Jesus Christ of LDS at 5555 Aztec Drive.
    4. September 20th 3:30-5pm at Aztec Park



5. Charleston, SC Church Shooting – Discussion                 All

  1. Correspondence was sent from our council to the church.
    1. There seems to be more that we can do. Do we do it as churches or a council? Can we convene a group to fight racism, a study and discussion group? Invite to meet regular for maybe 90 minutes?
    2. Maybe we do an event a forum of discussion. Maybe like the Day of Peace for the entire community to discuss.
    3. Possibly a sub-committee on what the interfaith council can do or what we should not do.
    4. Maybe we create a structure and start the informal discussion, then this may morph into a City sponsored event where we can provide the genesis. Do we take an ICLM monthly speaker to mediate the thoughts and work that we can do?
    5. It was mention the Police Department has a debriefing for all incidents, go through the details, breaking down the events that led to the incident. There are many topics that come in to play but we cannot avoid the conversation. We need to ask ourselves what can I change as an individual? Do we understand what is a mental health concern, what is racism, what is rage.
    6. Can we bring in Maxine Lynch or another resource to talk with us as a group to see what is out there for programs and what we can do to impact our community?
    7. There are many attitudes and feelings of entitlement that bring our own bias and prejudice. There are so many things happening that we sweep under the rug. We can address the issues where we see that we can make and impact and keep credibility as an organization. Increase understanding amongst our members first.
    8. Discussion held for future meetings.

6. Old Business


7. New Business

  1. Bill at Interfaith Shelter needs help. Grant from the County but have to have a host congregation in the Lakeside area immediately. Proximity to the bus stop is important. Several offered options.
    1. Global leadership summit. Hosted at Journey. Coming Willow Creek world class speakers. August Thursday and Friday at Journey 8am-4pm. http://journeycommunitychurch.com/events/summit/

8. Next Meeting – August 27, 2015

June 25, 2015 – Monthly Meeting Minutes

Flyers and handouts from the meeting – minutes, Alzheimer’s Report, Alzheimer’s Fact Sheet, La Mesa SANDAG Facts, Day of Peace Flyer

  1. Welcome/Introductions
    1. Additional Items To Be Discussed
    2. The Alzheimer’s Project1                                Dianne Jacob, Supervisor San Diego County Board                                                                                  Amber Tarrac – Policy Advisor
      1. About 2 years ago attended workshop at Skyline church. Realized this is more of an epidemic of great proportion. Public awareness.
      2. Statistic 1 out of 9 Americans 65 and older has Alzheimer’s. That statistic is anticipated to grow. 60,000 diagnosed expected to double because of aging population. 2/3 of those are women. 150,000 caretakers in San Diego are women. Women have twice as much chance to have Alzheimer’s over 60.
      3. 3rd leading cause of death behind heart disease and cancer. Higher rates in San Diego than the nation.
      4. Most expensive disease in America today. No cure yet. People with early diagnosis can live average 8-15 years and hits the family hard for costs of care. Good facilities are available but are expensive and most want to age in place at home so caretaking falls mostly on the women in the home.
      5. Government put 6 billion into cancer research, which is great but not even $1 bill into Alzheimer’s this year. Good and wonderful for what has been spent but not enough for the growing need. Not all with heart disease and cancer die due to great research but all with Alzheimer’s is eventually fatal, no cure yet.
      6. A plan of teamwork. As the County is largest public health agency, the thought was how can we partner in San Diego. Visits have be done UCSD, Salk, Sanford Burnham and Scripps Research. Positive response from all entities.
      7. 4 points – of the “Alzheimer’s project”
        1. Cure – roundtable team of many people.
        2. Care – care group, owners managers of facilities, respite care wondering, support, and education. There is also support for those care givers.
        3. Public education – more awareness. Need discuss in the community. So families know they are not alone. County won recent awards for efforts in this area of focus.
        4. Standards of diagnose & standards of care – for this disease. Early diagnosis can be treated even though not curable. Team of doctors are working on that and need more money and time.
      8. Project had a deadline of Dec 2nd of 2014. Hope was to have solid plan for group. Reports are available. Link this report where available onlineReport link is http://www.alz.org/sandiego/documents/Alzheimers_Report_FINAL_112514_(3).pdf
      9. So many ideas but we have not been able to get the ideas into drug discovery where the research dollars are located. Established collaboration for cure “C43”. $7 million 5 year plan. This has begun. Applications are in with ideas for next step.
      10. Fundraiser dinner was successful. Great evening. All competing organizations working on a singular cause.
      11. All people in region are needed to help in a variety of ways. 1 in 6 with Alzheimer’s wonder off. GPS bracelets are common but not fail proof. Support services are improving.
      12. 50% or doctors from survey were not aware of all the support services available.
      13. Diane Jacob is willing to come in to the La Mesa churches to spread the word, do workshops. We are working on it and there is support.
      14. Communities needs to rally to help this cause.
      15. Art Madrid comment – La Mesa is city with highest percentage of 60 and over so potential for a big impact from Alzheimer’s.
      16. Art Madrid – there may be a “personality” in La Mesa that may be able to raise awareness.
      17. Movie Still Alice raised the awareness of the disease. Only caveat is that they were wealthy and that is rarely the case.
      18. Suellen Treadwell comment – Library could be a gathering place for a support group. Suggestions to invite those that have been through this experience to make aware for others and give support. Diane to speak with County resource for this recommendation.
      19. Another workshop at Skyline church coming in July 18th at 9am. Current and update information. Very good workshop.
      20. There are tips to prevent Alzheimer’s for brain health. Keep active and in good health, exercise, movement, eating right, computer games to keep mind. Crossword puzzles and other activities that keep mind active. One recommendation was “don’t retire” unless you repurpose your life and remain active in other ways.
      21. There are pay services such as Lumosity.com a software full of games, shows strengths and weakness at $4-$5 a month.
      22. Youngest person diagnosed so far was 37 years old.
      23. It can affect all of us and is sure to impact us or someone we know dramatically.
    3.  Housing For Homeless Students – Update/Status
      1. Bank account almost complete. This will be a separate account through Cross Point church. With signature authorization from others on the sub-committee.
      2. Overview is the providing of deposits for transitional families to get into stable housing situation.
      3. Still looking for some more volunteers to be screeners and advisors for financial tools for struggling families.
    4. Summer Lunch Program – Update/Status
      1. Currently in first week of lunch program. Anyone under 18 years of age. Please notify congregations to let them know that food is available at Vista La Mesa Church every weekday.
      2. Encourage to visit sign-up genius. Late July and first week of August.
      3. Sign-up go to http://www.interfaithlamesa.org/schools/
      4. If not able to sign up just go to visit and see the great work being done in the La Mesa.
    5. International Day of Peace 2015 – Update/Status             Suellen Treadwell
      1. Sunday September 20th 3:30-5:00pm. Aztec Park.
      2. Update, see flyer, many exciting additions to last year’s successful event.
      3. Asking for art, poetry or other displays for peace theme.
      4. More young adults being invited to participate this year.
      5. Theme “Partnerships for Peace – Dignity for All”
    6. Old Business
      1. Pro-mentors transition from prison Ministry. Scheduled training on July 25th at Cross Pointe for those who would to join.
    7. New Business
      1. Interfaith Dialogue and Dessert – this month at:
        1. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Allied Gardens –
        2. 6767 51st Street, San Diego, CA
        3. 1:30-3:30pm
        4. Between Zion Ave and Allied Gardens Park
        5. Lane Smith presenting
      2. Diversity conversation for next month’s agenda – IN the wak of so many events across the nation, the difficult conversation of racism needs to be had and is on the agenda for next month.
      3. Low income housing outreach – is there something more that can be done to make housing affordable? Labeled inclusionary housing. Developers set aside typically 10% of development. There is development near the Old La Mesa Bowl on Parkway drive. Fairfield units. Put this on next month’s agenda.
    8. Items to be discussed at July meeting
    9. Next Meeting – July 23, 2015
    10. Adjourn_____________________________________________________________
    11. 1 The Alzheimer’s Project – A Call To Arms
      1. http://www.alz.org/sandiego/documents/Alzheimers_Report_FINAL_112514_(3).pdf

May 28, 2015 – Monthly Meeting Minutes

[ Here are the flyers from the meeting Prison Release; Housing for Homeless Students ; Summer Lunch Program ; Grossmont Union Needs – Work Program ]

Minutes in Word .doc format

1. Welcome/Introductions

2. Review Agenda for Additional Items To Be Discussed

3. Prison Release Mentorship Program – Dani Womack –

Notes – Prison Release -Ben Conarroe – See Flyer

Start to work with the prisoners before they are released from SD County jails. There have been many changes to release early low level criminals from jails into the local communities. Ministry has been operating for 2½ years. A class twice monthly, meet with volunteer mentor from community. Goal is to get them involved in church community family type involvement. Realignment act allows sentence to be served ½ is in custody and usually ½ in supervised release in the communities. More and more they are serving time in communities. Big change in state policies to allow more time served outside of jail. This PRO-Mentors program is the bridge to help them stay out. 12-15% success rate…not good enough for their goals but a high rate in judicial terms. Crosspointe has started to get involved. They are looking for more men, essentially a 3 hour a week time commitment. One 3-hour training required before you can become a mentor. Training soon at Crosspointe. Most service is at East Mesa Detention Center. One year commitment is asked. Hours of visitation are very open. We don’t provide money, housing or jobs but referrals and relationships are in place to help with those practical items also. Goal is to have 5 visits prior to release to build trust and relationship before release.

Announce this opportunity to our congregations because you never know who has a heart for those that are incarcerated. www.pro-mentors.com

4. LMPD Youth Leadership Camp – Dani Womack

Final stage of planning. 20-25 kids spending mon-thurs. Great opportunity to good youth leaders to be better trained. Let youth groups know. No cost. Typically 14 and up. June 29 – through July 2. Young leaders to be made better.

5. Presentation by GUHSD Transitions – Dani Womack, Judie Boyer GUHSD Employer Involvement Representative, Kathryn Gerstenberg – Special Education Teaceher/Advocate

Grossmont Union High School places young adults with challenges where they can actually work. Judy – employer involvement rep. Work with teachers and employers. They are searching for consistant places were students with challenges can serve on a regular basis.

  1. Volunteer positions to do work such as: food distribution, janitorial work, landscaping maintenance, mailing, cleaning lobbies, shredding paper, put in brochures, set up for meetings
    1. Some partners include: Bancroft school, Hunters Nursery, Walgreens, Foothills, Elks lodge, Meridian church
    2. Always have a workers comp covered through Grossmont district.
    3. Benefits for student include: Develops social skills, doing real work even if they are not officially hirable. Increases ability to function and perform hirable task, learn value of work. This helps them learn the skills and then also builds there stamina to get ready to work at a part time job.
    4. Another component is internship to eventually work independently if the employer gives approval to transition to hire, if student can work alone. Student wages are paid through grants.
    5. Program understands that it is always not hireable. As long as they are in school, covered by Grossmont HSD workers comp. Prefer to have a schedule weekly time slot to keep consistency. Would like to schedule an entire semester. Usually 2-3 students with one staff member. Leave school taking public transportation usually can arrive by 9:30 and work for a few hours then get back to school via public transportation.
    6. Recommendation to Judie for program to meet with City Managers of each of the cities in East County. Cities always have need for volunteers.

8. Housing for Homeless Students – Update/Status – Rebecca Littlejohn

Primary niche is to get deposit and first month’s rent to get stable housing.

1. May 13 training held for screening committee but need to train more people. Goal is to have 12 total trained screeners.

2. Talk to churches to add to funds. Preparing now to get started back up in August so that we can be prepared.

3. Looking for family budget mentors maybe going through interfaith shelter network, to help them manage month to month costs and bills. Anyone with skills in this regard can be sent over to Rebecca.

9. Summer Lunch Program – Update/Status – Rebecca Littlejohn

Summer lunch program opens June 22 – Free-lunch for anyone 18 and under.

  1. 3rd annual providing lunch Monday through Friday 11:30-12:30pm. Mondays and Fridays reading before lunch, read to kids or listen while other kids read. Toys come out afterwards.
    1. Looking for volunteers and captains training Tuesday June 2nd at 6pm.
    2. A big challenge has been unpredictable attendance.
    3. Working on solutions for adults to have food available for those adults that stay. Advertisement goes through many channels, including schools and other youth support programs.

10. International Day of Peace 2015 – Update/Status – Suellen Treadwell

Planning United Day of Peace second annual coming in Aztec Park. Task force is meeting on June 4th 4pm at the Church of Jesus Christ of LDS, all welcome. We are building off of a successful event from last year.

Sunday the September 20th will be this year’s event date.

11. Old Business

12. New Business

  1. How are we handling membership drive? Go through the old sign-ups and have Cross pointe a personal email or call to get contact and reenlist their help and ideas. Also need to keep better meeting minutes and send out to the group to keep updated on presenters and ICLM efforts in community.
    1. Calvary Chapel Will Meyers 1st time. They are seeing an increase in their food bank. Want to connect with other churches or resources in La Mesa doing food distribution. Talked with Dani, gave him www.interfaithlamesa.org website resource of food distribution flyer listing points.

13. Items to be discussed at June meeting

14. Next Meeting – June 25, 2015

January 22, 2015

Discussions from meeting –

1. Homelessness in schools – Discussion with Bruce Crenshaw. At risk education, some behavioral issues-keep kids in school is goal. Options: combine effort with other organizations (Lemon Grove has something functioning), explore grants, reach out to local businesses.

 Start our own program? La Mesa first United Methodist used to have a program: Bruce will vet the family, typically needed is money for first month deposit/rent, family shows income that they can afford the monthly, average need is $500-$1000. During the school year average 15 to 20 families. If we were able to get 10 churches times $500 each…

Who do we write checks to? Would it be La Mesa First United Methodist?

 Other options: go to school board La Mesa Spring Valley, foundations, nonprofit organizations, interfaith shelter network, Union Bank, housing commission, grant writers (Dani knows some experts) it is a big task to manage the dollars. Local businesses like Edco, Brady family company. Need official stationary from Interfaith Council Group Email (assigned to Lane)

How can we as an organization or a church get closer to the families?

2. Outreach – it was recommended we should consider writing letters to community leaders. Example, there is a new CEO at Grossmont Hospital, share some of the good things that we are doing. This builds the awareness of the council and greater involvement in La Mesa.

3. Trauma kits La Mesa Police Department – One per vehicle. 35 units were provided by the churches of La Mesa. There will be a small presentation ceremony. Could do a press release next time we do something like this. This increases awareness of the council.

 4. Interfaith shelter was discussed – going well and shifting through East County churches. Check calendar because it is always on the move.

October 23, 2014

 12:04 p.m. – Welcome/Intro/Opening Prayer – Noted Lane Smith will not be in attendance, Marie Foster taking meeting notes. David Merk not in attendance, Rebecca Littlejohn leading meeting. Art Madrid gave update on David and how he’s doing after surgery.

Those is attendance – Fred Jacobsen, Dani Womack, Anne Pacheco, Suellen Treadwell, Aaron Landau, Nancy Ryan, Nancy Brass, LaVern Olberding, Rebecca Littlejohn, Art Madrid, Michelle Looney, Marie Foster and guests Dana Stevens (Communities Against Substance Abuse/Marijuana Dispensaries and Rev. Frank Platone-Willey (Summit UU Fellowship, Santee).

12:10 – Review Agenda – Add’l items to be discussed – Marie asked for 30 seconds for Advantage Center. Frank Placone-Willey asked for 5 minutes regarding Santee Ministerial Council.

12:15 – The Bahai Faith – Suellen Treadwell spoke about the Baha’i faith. They are an independent religion from Iran that believe in one God, the world is one race and they are about building world unity. The also believe in independent investigation of truth, man/woman equality and essential harmony of religion and science. They have community building events as well.

12:27 – Substance Abuse/Marijuana Dispensaries – Dana Stevens spoke on reasons to oppose Prop J on the upcoming ballot in La Mesa. Areas she spoke about were the entire sales tax provision is invalid and cannot be implemented, serious felons & other convicted criminals (no background checks required) are allowed to operate dispensaries, ballot measure claims to “establish clear rules” but contains no penalties for violation and even prohibits dispensary inspection to ensure compliance with local or California laws, dispensary permits would never expire and could not be revoked and could be owned forever, does not allow the public, City Council or planning department to review or give input, requires the city use your tax dollars to pay for another ballot measure to make any changes to the proposed ordinance.

12:49 – Frank spoke about the Santee Ministerial Council in Santee that is connected with the Santee Food Bank as well. Was attending to learn how the Interfaith Council of La Mesa works.

12:55 – Interfaith Shelter VLMCCs online signhttp://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0d4da9ae2aa1fb6-vlmcc – Rebecca spoke on her church hosting this. You may call her for more info at 619.905.7566 and/or sign up at the previous link.

12:59 – Old/New Business – Marie spoke about the need for musicians and/or singers to entertain at the Advantage Center in La Mesa. Handed out email copy and will send out follow-up email.

Rebecca spoke about the Fair Trade event on 12/06/14, 9-3 p.m.

Nancy B spoke about homeless leaving their business at her church. Dani said she can get a form from the LMPD to request patrol for their private property to handle it.

Rebecca lead and group discussed next meeting date of 12/04/14. Suggested sending email to David and Lane to confirm and then out to group.

1:05 p.m. – Meeting adjourned

July 24, 2014

  1. Review Agenda – Additional Items To Be Discussed
    1. Elder Abuse                                                                               Maxine Lynch

Community Resource Specialist

La Mesa Police Department

La Mesa has 16%-17% citizens that are 65 and older, highest out of 18 cities.

P.A.C.E. health insurance option for seniors.

  1. You Are Not Alone                                                                   Maxine Lynch – office 619-667-7547


Or “YANA” program is organized to provide daily calls, weekly visits by trained staff for home-bound seniors. Currently visit about 30 people monthly. Volunteers needed.

  1. Rides For Neighbors                                                  Natalie Ford City of La Mesa

Rides For Neighbors

East County people to East County locations. Volunteers are needed. Will pay for gas up to $0.56 per mile. Current number of drivers is 56 for ~900 riders. Drivers go through Live Scan. Required to have insurance, secondary insurance offered. www.cityoflamesa.com/R4N No charge but a suggested donation. A slip will be provided but they do not have to pay. Guarantee one medical appointment a week. Qualifications are 60+ with disability that prevents using public transportation. They also have a wheelchair truck. No weekend or after 5pm. Last year 125,000 miles of rides provided. Yellow cab coupon booklet also provided, 50% of taxi scripts.

From their website:

Our program offers safe, reliable, personalized transportation to adults over 60, or disabled adults, who cannot drive. Rides are provided by our volunteer drivers who truly care about each and every individual they transport. Our mission is to help you remain independent!

•Door-to-door rides are provided for essential needs such as medical or dental appointments, shopping, personal care, banking and more.

•Riders must be 60+ or disabled adults who cannot drive due to their age or disability.

•Our service covers residents in La Mesa and neighboring east county communities. If you live elsewhere, please call 619-667-1321 for a referral.

•Before requesting a ride, an application must be completed. Rides must be requested 5 business days prior to the appointment.

•Rides4Neighbors is grant funded by the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG). Each trip is donation based.

Signing up is easy!

Just call 667-1321 to see if you are eligible or to receive an application.

DRIVERS NEEDED! To become a volunteer, just complete the volunteer driver application and return it to the address noted on the form. Or call us today at 619.667.1321 for information about becoming a Rides4Neighbors volunteer.

Rides for Neighbors   •We’ll pay for your DMV and fingerprint background check.

•Once approved you’ll learn our user friendly web-based scheduling system.

•Choose the appointments that best suit your personal schedule – no minimum number of rides required.

•You’ll receive mileage reimbursement at the most current per-mile rate and secondary liability insurance.

  1. Discussion of Needs of Seniors and Opportunities To Help

RSVP volunteer police patrol, needs volunteers desperately. Duties are simple and rewarding. May include such things as taking down garage sale signs, check on seniors, etc. From their website: www.cityoflamesa.com

Retired Senior Volunteer Patrol (RSVP)

A highly visible segment of our work force are the members of the department’s retired senior volunteer patrol.

These active seniors donate their time to patrol the city, conduct vacation security checks, visit elderly and home-bound citizens, and provide information and services to the public at the La Mesa Police Department headquarters, located at 8085 University Avenue.

Volunteer Your Time

You can also download the RSVP application. For more information, please call the La Mesa Police Department at 619.667.7592 or drop by in person.

  1. Old Business
    1. Summer Lunch Program – it has been a lot of work and successful. Approximately 20 kids the first several days then an average of 8-10 kids each day thereafter. Will have a post-event review to plan/modify for next year.
    2. New Business
      1. La Mesa graffiti tracking system discussed. Call or Maxine Lynch

Graffiti Reporting & Removal

About the Program

The city has an anti-graffiti program that depends on property owners and neighborhoods to help combat the problem.

•If the graffiti is on public property, the city will have it removed.

•If it occurs on private property, the city will contact the owner and ask that it be removed.

The Police Department’s Crime Prevention Unit will take reports of graffiti from their hotline, 619.667.7560.

Crime Stoppers Tagger Tip Line

To report those suspected of tagging and graffiti in the City of La Mesa, please visit San Diego Crime Stoppers or call the tip line at 888.580.8477. Persons can anonymously report suspected taggers by phone, text, or web tip and be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000 for tips leading to an arrest.

2.  Historical Society did an article spotlight on Chief Aceves in their Summer 2014 newsletter. http://lamesahistory.com


3. International Day of Peace Celebration – the Interfaith Council has decided to support a day of peace in Aztec Park on Sept 21st 2014. A separate committee has decided to meet and plan the event.

 4. Boys and Girls club will be going in at the west end of LaMesa Middle School playgrounds. Rady family has donated $3 million. Need fund raising before construction can start.

  1. Next Meeting – August 28, 2014

January 23, 2014


November 14, 2013

  1. School food-drive update
    1. Discussion of special events by individual church membersfor upcoming Holidays and how we can collective help.
    2. Statusoftopics/issuesprioritizedatlastmeeting.

Holiday Food Drive: Rotary Club matched $1,250

Membership: Need to always be recruiting or reaching out to other churches. Journey church will take the lead to reach out to other faiths to invite them to come back. Questions to ask? send to marie.kane2006@gmail.com  Find out their focus and see if it unites with work we are doing, Have a

Council letter to restore SNAP food program

www.myfount.com Bill is requesting we consider entering all La Mesa Churches into database

October 24 2013

List of successes and challenges. What we do well, what can we do better, what should we focus on?


Unified body, colaboration, break down barriers. Communication to entire group of churches in La Mesa. Neighborhood Watch event. School lunches. Innovative thinking. Newer Council, not entrenched, will to adjust (“like an amoeba”). Great presentations, info and points of contact (Human Trafficing, Shelters, PTSD, American Red Cross, SANDAG). Partnership support to smaller churches. Connections to good groups/organizations. Show what good church people can accomplish. Maintain nimbledness. Interfaith shelter. Fair Trade success, Food dsitribution pamphlet, Care Fair (multiple booths), Emerg Prep booth in East County Health Fair, Summer Lunch, Underwear drive, summer lunch program, Neighborhood watch launch meeting. Citizenship campaign in elementary schools. Tom Skinner PTSD.


Communication to those not in attendance. Random attendance, turn over in leaders. No attendance outside of Christian faith, there is a recent store front Synagogue. No Islamic Mosque but there are surely by muslims, how find a member to attend? Follow up on tasks, need a champion or “task-master”. Sub-committee confusion, can be tough to know where to jump in and help, re-evaluate the sub-committees and make it clear where people are needed. Knowing and crystallizing our identity. People’s schedules are already full. More diversity, no spanish representation. Meetings must be productive and build on the previous accomplished tasks and needs. Need more advanced notice before events to give time to calendar in each church calendar.

Ideas: each year extend a new invitation to each church to check us out and get involved. Website to show events (photos and flyers) so churches can see what we are doing. A Facebook page. Formulate annual events so each church can schedule in advance. Stay  relevant and keep focused on highest priorities of the council. Subcommittees are not eternal, only as long as useful. And special task-force assignments can be used versus sub-committees. Discuss what expectations of support form other churches when we determine a good Interfaith Council cause

What should we focus on?

1. Schools: Re-energize contacts. School lunch program. Tutoring. Spending time with kids. Just people to show up and be there for the kids. Possible adopt, teach reading, get Barnes & Noble involved. Mayor to get reading program  that was successful for $5 mil Bloomberg Foundation Innovation award.

2. Homelessness: see survey. What can we do, numbers are increasing. Very complex issue. Evaluate, gather a list of resources and La Mesa organizations that can help.

3 Service: Service is universal unites everyone. Do we do one big event for big impact or serve in smaller groups for broader impact. Good to serve side by side with other congregations. Santee code enforcement officials call Pathway’s Church when elderly indivduals are cited for code violations and Pathways allocates members labor and $300 per project.


September 26 2013


May 24 2012

1. Update on Tom Skinner’s travel

2. Subcommittee Reports

3. Discussion of topics for future meetings

4. Share information about existing intervention programs at each church that may

be adopted by others

5. Review or solicit potential community work projects for Pastor T.C.’s youth group

April 26 2012

1. Presentation from Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego – Red Shoe Day

2. Presentation from T.C. Porter – Week of Hope

3. Update on Tom Skinner’s Travels

March 29 2012

1. Update on Tom Skinner’s Travels

2. Subcommittee Reports

3. Update on City’s Centennial Activities

4. Summary of Council’s Strategic Planning Workshop


January 26 2012

1. Status on Tom Skinner’s Project

2. Red Cross Presentation: Partnership and Training Opportunities with

the Red Cross

3. Neighborhood Watch Information Night

October 27 2011

1. Discuss a potential electronic Neighborhood Watch program.

2. Hand out and discuss, if appropriate, City’s “Citizen Disaster Preparedness Program.”

August 25, 2011

1. Update sub-committee sign-ups; discuss/choose meeting dates, meeting locations and other specifics as appropriate.

2. Draft of Mission Statement based on compilation of suggestions from committee

members: “Contribute to the well-being of at risk individuals, families and the general population in our community through resources of the Interfaith Council’s membership.”

This item is open to full discussion by the committee!

3. Adopt change meeting dates by the full committee

Minutes of the meeting held on August 25, 2011, at 12:00 p.m., in the Police Department

Community Room.

Veterans Affairs

Tom Skinner talked about the lack of services for veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic

Stress Disorder (PTSD) and the need to bring awareness about this disorder. He said he has

lots of material about PTSD and wants to know how to make it available to the churches.

Also, he has a 90-minute presentation “What Comes After” that he would like the group to

see. It was asked if this presentation can be reduced to 30 minutes. He replied that it has

already been reduced. He thanked the members that joined the Veteran Affairs

Subcommittee and said he could use more help.

Maxine Lynch said that in San Rafael there is a program called West Coast Post Trauma

Retreat for military personnel and first responders. The program provides intense therapy for

a whole week. The providers are looking for a location to open a similar program in San

Diego. She said to visit their website at www.wcpr2001.org

Art Madrid said he will find out if the San Diego Foundation has funds or programs for



Mayor Madrid said that members can sign up for more than one subcommittee. In order to

be more effective as a group, he suggested that the subcommittees meet on a monthly basis

and then have all the subcommittees meet bi-monthly and report back to the ICLM.

Mission Statement

After brainstorming, the group came to a consensus on the following Mission Statement:

“Our mission is to contribute to the well-being of the general population of our community

including individuals, families and those at risk community members through the resources

and actions of the Interfaith Council’s membership.”

Neighborhood Watch Program

Maxine Lynch gave an overview of the program. She said the program started in the 70’s

and they are looking for new ideas to rebrand the program.

Cont. Interfaith Council of La Mesa Minutes

August 25, 2011

Page 2

Emergency Preparedness

The group discussed the churches participation in emergency preparedness programs and

how to make their services available to the community in case of a disaster.

Anne Pacheco said their church signed up as an emergency shelter with the Red Cross

through Mona Freels. Several members said their churches will be also signing up.

Lane Smith said he will follow up with the emergency preparedness subcommittee.

Mayor Madrid said that schools could also be used as emergency shelters. However, there is

a concern with liability issues.

Fair Trade

Anne Pacheco distributed information about Fair Trade and said that they will be asking the

City Council to pass a resolution in support of La Mesa becoming a Fair Trade City. They

have been outreaching to businesses, non-profits, schools and organizations asking for their


General Comments

David Merk said that Rides4Neighbors is looking for volunteers to drive senior or disabled

individuals to appointments. If interested please call Catherine Hollarn at 619-667-1320.

The group discussed the possibility to have a community food drive and ask businesses for


Aaron Henderson said the ICLM has it own broadcast email at


He said emails will go automatically to all members and he can set up group emails for the



Mayor Madrid adjourned the meeting at 1:25 p.m.

July 28 2011

Minutes of the meeting held on July 28, 2011, at 12:00 p.m., in the Police Department Community Room.

Attendees: Aaron Henderson, Dwell Church; Anne Pacheco, St. Martin’s of Tours Catholic Church; Art Madrid, City of La Mesa Mayor; Carolyn Wildberger, Christian Science; Cheryl Baldivia, Skyline Wesleyan Church; Dani Womack, Crosspointe Life Church; Danielle Rundle, Skyline Wesleyan Church; David Merk, Journey, Jack Gillespie, UCC La Mesa, Lane Smith, Church of Jesus Christ LDS; Leigh Ann Shaw, La Mesa First United Methodist Church; Lidia Simms, City of La Mesa; Mona Freels, Heartland Fire & Rescue; Robert Evasick, Faith Based; Sam Calhoun, Windsor Hills Community Church; Seth Clark, Lake Murray Community Church

Mayor Madrid distributed handouts with census and unemployment information.

La Mesa Fair Trade

Anne Pacheco distributed a handout about La Mesa Fair Trade and encouraged all present to purchase fair trade products for their churches or events. She said Fair Trade helps developing countries with fair working conditions.

Emergency Preparedness

Mona Freels from Heartland and Fire Rescue stated that she coordinates emergency preparedness for the cities of La Mesa, Lemon Grove and El Cajon.  She distributed a flyer with information about the Faith Based Initiative Emergency Preparedness and invited the churches to become partners as shelters or/and Host an emergency preparedness event.  She said the main goal is to get the message out to be prepared and to reach as many people as possible.

La Mesa Centennial

Mayor Madrid said that in 204 days La Mesa will be celebrating its Centennial.  He said there was no faith based representation in the Centennial Committee and he invited anyone that wishes to attend.  The meeting is scheduled on August 15, 2011, at 4:30 pm, in the Fire Department EOC Conference Room.

Select a Name for the Group

The group stated that the name should be simple.  The following names were suggested: Interfaith Resource Connections, Interfaith Resource Network, Activate and Interfaith Council of La Mesa.  After discussion it was the consensus to name the group Interfaith Council of La Mesa.

Mission Statement

It was suggested to include in the mission statement that the group is a faith based organization the words government and mobilize.  Mayor Madrid said people are against government and objected to include the word government. There was no final decision on the mission statement.

Mayor Madrid said the City acts as a facilitator to create partnerships with other agencies and leaders.


Attendees signed up for one or more subcommittees as follows:

  • Communications – Aaron Henderson, Cheryl      Baldivia
    • Emergency      Preparedness –      Robert Evasick, Lane Smith, Danielle Rundle, Dani Womack and David Merk      (maybe)
    • Food      Distribution –      Dani Womack, Anne Pacheco, Seth Clark, Journey Church
    • Homelessness – Seth Clark, David Merk, Aaron      Henderson
    • Neighborhood      Watch – Anne      Pacheco, Dani Womack, Sam Calhoun, Aaron Henderson
    • Parks – David Merk, Aaron Henderson, Robert      Evasick
    • Veteran      Affairs – Jack      Gillespie, Sam Calhoun

General Comments

Madrid said grocery stores have a policy to make contributions to the community.  He added that unemployment will not get better for a long time and there are many people in need.

Dani Womack said that Albertson’s participates in Feeding America and Crosspointe Life picks the food up twice a week for distribution.

Anne Pacheco said they already distribute food to 400+ people and the need is growing.  She also mentioned that Erin Jones from the Police Department provided handouts for the National Night Out.

Mayor Madrid said that the old neighborhood watch signs will be replaced in the near future.  He also said that after several months of search, the City finally found a location suitable for a community garden. The garden will be in partnership with Helix Charter High School.  The garden will be used by the students and residents.

Caroline Wildberger said that it was important include the schools to address childhood obesity.

Mayor Madrid said that in future meetings he would like to invite different guest speakers including the Superintended of La Mesa-Spring Valley School District.

Mayor Madrid asked for a vote to select a Co-Chair.  The group unanimously voted to select David Merk.

The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, August 25, 2011, at 12:00 p.m., in the Police Department Community Room.

August 3 2011 Summary of notes/discussions


Mission Statement

We provide guidance and resources to (fill the gaps of) our neighbors in La Mesa and surrounding areas through a united effort of faith based organizations.




Key words: activate, neighbors, outreach, action, fill gaps



New Items:


Open items:



Council Objectives:

  1. Provide information on resources to fill the gap for those in need.
    1. With 41 churches in La Mesa we can collectively accomplish more.
    2. Work with City programs and personnel in a collaborative effort.
    3. Get people of faith more involved in their community.
    4. Provide service opportunities for youth.
    5. Create something that is duplicatable in other others of the region.
    6. Create effective, focused and passionate sub-committees of approximately 9-11 people
    7. Provide a current listing of resources, thrift stores, employment centers, housing and family resources.
    8. Create a communication path for faith based organizations in the La Mesa area.
    9. Maintain an updated website with current content and resources.
    10. Search out faith based grants for financial assistance to further our outreach effectiveness.
    11. Educate each other and the community at large about our different faith traditions so that walls of fear and ignorance could be broken down and replaced with bridges of mutual respect and understanding.
    12. Provide current list of social service activities provided by each church
    13. Meeting format to Bi-monthly. Committee/subcommittee every other month.


Council Notes:

  1. Fair Trade (a movement to help promote trade with developing countries with fair working conditions): St Martin’s provided information on fair trade products and companies. Asking each church to promote and purchase fair trade products.
    1. Goal of 12 new stores, 2 new products.
    2. Flyers available


1.            Homelessness – Skyline, Danielle Rundle and Journey, David Merk

  1. Search out resources and post for all to use. Create line card of resources and programs available.
    1. Many are vet’s and we have a moral obligation.
    2. Celebrate recovery, create steps to recovery.
    3. Teach population more tolerance and sympathy towards homeless population. Dispel fear.
    4. Possible inter-faith shelter. Explore acquiring a house to create beds and a step up for homeless.
    5. Explore donations of a large partner
    6. Statistic of 55 homeless in La Mesa
    7. Teach them skills. Employment, shopping, financial budgeting.
    8. List out resources available on 211

2.            Emergency Preparedness – Church of Jesus Christ of LDS, Lane Smith, Dirk Oliver

  1. Prepare citizens & neighbors for potential disruptions of daily life though providing resources, skills and knowledge that will help them endure the disaster well.
    1. Earthquake Simulator: resource from Dran (sp?) Reese @ readyamerica.com. Skyline used recently.
    2. Meet with City of La Mesa personnel before releasing any information.
    3. Members: Mac Nibbs, St. Andrews; Robert Evasick (HAM w/Steve Early), Calvary Chapel,
    4. LDS Cannery tour (Skyline did tour)
    5. HAM Radio classes and certifications
    6. Promote City and regional CERT program
    7. CPR: Train the trainers, 8 hours.
    8. Fire Station 11 is emergency point
    9. Red Cross resources
    10. Encourage purchase power special deals for the group.
    11. Create a packet to deliver to new congregants. Websites, City Contacts, training, City resources vs individual.
    12. Create reoccurring structure.
    13.  Create peace of mind by teaching all to be prepared for disaster, loss of job or other emergencies.
      1. Make a plan.
      2. 72 hour kit.
      3. Three-month
        supply of food that is part of your normal daily diet.
      4. Drinking water.
      5. Financial reserves.
      6. Longer-term supply of basic food items.
      7. Medication and first aid supplies.
      8. Clothing and bedding.
      9. Important documents.
      10. Ways to communicate with family following a disaster
      11. Community gardens

3.            Veteran Affairs – United Church of Christ, Tom Skinner

  1. See Mayor Madrid’s letter to Padres and union tribune article
    1. 33% unemployment rate among veterans
    2. United Church of Christ has close ties to 33-acre camp. They can walk veterans through all programs available. County will help wounded veterans

4.            Neighborhood Watch – St Martins, Ann Pecho

  1. Promote adoption of Neighborhood Watch program. 527 streets and only 95 adopted.
    1. Crime prevention
    2. Service projects for community, repair homes, blighted areas.
    3. Interact with City RSVP units

5.            Food Distribution – Crosspointe, Dani Womack

  1. Mon-Fri, parishioners bring in, la mesa residents only, contact local businesses
    1. How to take unsold food, leftovers from local businesses and distribute quickly.
    2. What restrictions are there for churches and for food handling
    3. Support farmer’s Market, new bigger location.
    4. Feeding America: resource for produce, 1500 pounds of food. Problem is distribution
    5. Journey new food bank, Wed- Sat
    6. 62% increase in need at Food Bank

6.            Communications – Dwell Church, Aaron Henderson and help from United Church of Christ, Tom Skinner

  1. Tom to create a website (Apple)with input from others
    1. Provide a communication medium to broadcast communications and posts to the entire group and by subcommittee.
    2. Create a method for each subcommittee to post updates and keep their individual pages current.
    3. Cost of $99 a year to host. Mayor Madrid offered to cover first year.
    4. Find 4-5 technology experts amongst the congregants to participate.
    5. How to reach other churches that have not come on board so they feel the energy of what is happening and join.

7.            Parks – Journey (not sure if this was an official subcommittee?)

  1. Collier Park – Journey has “adopted”. Movie nights
    1. Utilize volunteers to improve parks. Use eagle scout projects, skilled congregation members and  coordinate effort with City general Plan

Subcommittee Notes:

Possible future subcommittees discussed were: Music, community garden, seniors, schools/government, finance (seeking grants, corporate donations and fund raising), rides/transportation.




General Thoughts/Notes:

ü  Possibly rotate monthly meetings to individual churches being represented.

ü  Show our faith by serving others

  • Matthew 25:35-36
    • Feed the hungry
    • Clothe the naked
    • Visit the sick and those in prison

ü  Help others be able to be responsible for themselves, be self-reliant, spiritual and temporal well-being rest first upon themselves, feed them a fish until the learn to fish. Help people help themselves. Recipients of these resources are given opportunities to work, to the extent of their ability, for the assistance they receive.

ü  Provide dignity to those in need.

ü  Provide opportunities for congregant members to serve. Allow people of faith to use their expertise and compassion to serve others in their community. Some ideas for outreach include:

  • Community service projects
    • Knock doors for a local charity
    • Run a fitness session in a local park
    • Run a winter collection of clothing, be a drop off for the community, or knock doors to collect. A purpose helps the cause. Put your unwanted clothes to work.
    • Find a need a mobilize resources: blighted neighborhoods, painting, parks, hunger
    • Invite the community (neighborhoods) to participate in a challenge for homeless, hunger, crime etc.
    • Host a concert in the park
    • Write thank you cards to local business for their contribution to the community. Those that keep a clean standard, good service, etc.
    • Community car wash to provide proceeds to local charity, homeless effort, etc.
    • Clean up La Mesa Day, coordinated effort, BBQ afterwards
    • Run a course or workshop at the church with congregants expertise, coping with depression, managing money in tough economic times.
    • Disaster preparedness fair, first aid class.
    • Outreach to the lonely, elderly, widow, fatherless
    • Host a drive in movie night a church building, get viewing license, fm transmitter
    • Outreach popular needs
      • 1. Healthy Living Support Group
      • 2. Entrepreneurial & Job Search Workshop
      • 3. Youth Programs
      • 4. Cooking Classes
      • 5. Family Life Center
      • Opportunities for teens to serve and take responsibility
      • Make others aware of fair trade stores and products. Host a fair trade market.

ü  Successful events at a friend’s interfaith council:

  • Spring Festival of Sacred Music and Text – basically an interfaith concert where religious groups could either perform music or read from their scriptures (because not all groups use music in their worship). This was a great opportunity for people of all faiths to learn something about each other. Equally important was the socializing that happened afterwards with cookies and punch.
    • Baccalaureate services for the local High School and Universities. These were interfaith affairs with readings and participation from all the major faith groups.
    • Interfaith service projects – especially involving youth.
    • Interfaith Award for a graduating High School Senior who exemplified the kind of interfaith respect and outreach that MAP promoted.
    • Host interfaith speakers on local university campuses. One of the people brought in was Gustav Neibhur from Syracuse University, who wrote a book called “Beyond Tolerance.”
    • Hosted public viewings of interfaith films/documentaries

January 27 2011 The begining of the council

Thank you for accepting my invitation to meet next week on Thursday, January 27, 11:45 a.m.  The location is 4975 Memorial Drive, La Mesa (in the same complex that is home to the City’s community pool and sunset Golf Course).

Lunch will be provided.  While the invitation says 11:45 a.m., by the time we all arrive, greet each other and start with lunch, it will be noon.

As stated in my invitation letter, the purpose of this meeting is to share with each other those programs in each respective church which were established to assist individuals in need of some type of social service assistance.  I look forward to sharing with you what the City is doing in this arena.

Mayor Art Madrid

First meeting follow up letter: Letter Feb 9

Article in UT: UT Article

Meeting minutes from January 27 2011


January 27, 2011 Meeting Discussion Points

  • City to be more aware of social      needs
    • How to communicate with City officials
    • With though economy more people      are homeless
    • Coordinating and coming up with      a plan will take more than one meeting
    • Connect the services and create      a network
    • Need to be a social agent
    • How information about services      will be disseminated?
    • Find agencies that could help
    • Register with 211 for outreach
    • Get vouchers for food
    • Coordinate with the Food Bank
    • Have a collection point with      restaurants
    • Have a services centralized      location supported by all churches
    • There are people without      transportation, money, medicines, etc.
    • Have a survey and create a      database of all services
    • Some people looking for      opportunity to give to others
    • Health exercise for homeless      ministry upandrunningagain.com
    • Is hard to pray when people are      hungry
    • Touch people with compassion      and get people to the next step
    • Give the opportunity to people live      out their faith
    • Make prayer part of the      meetings and open and close meetings in prayer
    • Create strategies on how to      channel resources and have clear goals and objectives
    • Have a retreat for brainstorming
    • After proving what can be done then      invite other cities and their ministries
    • Needs to be a long term      commitment
    • Need to stay in this process      together until we see results and stay on task
    • Make an impact in the community
    • Meetings are an opportunity for      interfaith fellowship
    • Have a map of church locations      in La Mesa

Thursdays is a good day to meet except last Thursday of the month

Questionnaire after first meeting:


Church Name:                                                                                          


Contact Person:                                                                                    

  1. What social service activities are currently provided by your church?

Please list:

  1. Do you work in conjunction with other agencies or churches in providing these services?

Please list:

  1. What social services are needed that do not currently exist?
    1. Do you see a value in unifying the delivery of services within the La Mesa Community?    Yes_____   No______
    2. Do you see a need/value to promote a neighborhood watch program within your congregation as part of this collaborative effort?  Yes _____  No_____
    3. Would you be willing to continue participating in this working group, followed by a workshop, to develop a more comprehensive delivery system?

Yes_____   No______



  1. Additional comments or suggestions?

If you need additional space for answers please use another sheet.  Thank you.