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Our weekly newsletter filled with news, updates, and inspiring stories of how God is working in the Bay Area.

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Catalysts for change

One day the Pharisees asked Jesus, “When will the Kingdom of God begin?” Jesus replied, “The Kingdom of God isn’t ushered in with visible signs. You won’t be able to say, ‘It has begun here in this place or there in that part of the country.’ For the Kingdom of God is within you.”

Luke 17:20-21 TLB

Jesus told us that the Kingdom of God is neither an event to attend nor a particular geographic location to visit. It is, rather, a set of convictions and beliefs that live inside of certain people. These are people who have decided to embody Jesus’ qualities of compassion, empathy, love, and faith the best they can. Because of this decision, they spread hope to people everywhere – wherever they live and whatever they do.    

As a church, one of the ways we strive to spread hope is partnering with community organizations like E-Sports, which creates inclusive sports programs where those with special needs thrive alongside their neurotypical peers. If you are a regular reader of this newsletter, you are probably aware that the comprehensive inclusion of E-Sports has been helping families for over two decades.

But you may not be aware of how much these programs are expanding. E-Sports has grown into the umbrella of E-Life, a collection of all kinds of activities that bring inclusion beyond Saturday morning sports. Today we want to build your faith by telling you how their new programs are spreading hope by making inclusion a lifestyle instead of an event.

Making our communities rise through E-Life

Jesus said again, “What can I compare God’s kingdom with? It is like yeast that a woman mixes into a big bowl of flour to make bread. The yeast makes all the dough rise.”

Luke 13:20-21 ERV

Just as a little bit of yeast makes a big bowl of flour rise, a little bit of love and connection make a community grow. E-Life, along with its volunteers and participants, gives us a great example of that.

Cultivating friendships at E-Gardening 

E-Gardening was launched in the Spring of 2021 and is now offered in two locations, Foster City and Sunnyvale. Both locations have had several successful seasons, with participants growing their own vegetables, making crafts, and cultivating sensory gardens.

As with any E-Program, emotional inclusion and intellectual inclusion are essential components of E-Gardening. While enjoying a relaxing and fun gardening session, everyone at E-Gardening also gets to build relationships and contribute to the community. Passersby love to watch the sensory garden at BACC Common Ground grow from week to week as the E-Gardening crew works on it, and parents love seeing their kids socialize in a safe and inclusive environment.

“I’ve had many parents tell me how happy they are that there are programs like these because it’s been so hard for their children to socialize, especially during the pandemic,” said Stephanie Koo, E-Life Special Projects Coordinator. “These programs not only provide a safe space for children, teens, and adults to come and be themselves, but also connect with others through creativity.”

Capturing special moments at E-Photography

E-Photography is a place where anyone can learn basic photography skills while building friendships and connecting through creativity. Each session has a different theme (like lighting or color photography) and participants get to practice taking photos together. 

Social inclusion is an important part of any E-Program, and E-Photography is no exception. Photographers of all abilities get to spend time connecting at the end of each session talking about what they enjoyed and learned. 

“Improv”-ing life at E-Theater

E-Theater, the newest addition to the E-Life family, launched its pilot program last Saturday with a great turnout of kids who all enjoyed learning different theater concepts together. 

Rasarea Chan, who minored in theater at UC Berkeley and leads E-Theater with Johnny Lewis, expressed how much theater can help promote inclusion in kids of all ages and abilities:

It’s an amazing opportunity for children to develop social cues and communication skills through these activities by learning how to effectively express emotions, adapt to each other’s needs, and lead one another. Johnny and I are both so grateful to be able to use our passion for theater to provide this opportunity for children to grow in their confidence in a way they may have never been able to.”

Spreading inclusion to the community

As these programs grow, we look forward to more people finding hope by experiencing inclusion in parts of their lives they might not have otherwise. Just this week, E-Life was invited to share about all of their programs at a resource fair for the Special Education Local Plan Area II, which coordinates services for school districts in Sunnyvale, Cupertino, and Santa Clara. E-Life is becoming a part of the fabric of the community, giving parents a place that is inclusive of their kids no matter what age or challenge.  

As Jesus said, with just a little bit of the yeast of compassion, love, and faith, whole communities are able to rise and have new hope!

E-Gardening and E-Theater are currently in session. To learn how to get involved as a volunteer or participant, visit

Till next week,

Scott and Margo Colvin

South Bay Lead Ministers

Written by

Scott Colvin

Scott Colvin is an evangelist at the Bay Area Christian Church. Scott ran cross country for the University of North Carolina. Some say he's still running to this day.