~ Links on this web page ~

[ Home | Christian Feminism | Worship & Labyrinth Schedule | Conversations | Directions | Leadership | Our Community ]

~ Links to additional web pages on the Weave of Faith website ~

[   Worship and Rituals in a Feminist Key | Eucharist / Communion | Recipes - Communion Bread ]

 [ Statement of Purpose | Herstory of Weave of Faith | Co-Founders ]

 [ Labyrinth Project | Bibliography & Resources | Networking / Links ]

 [ The Sacred Feminine: Images & Names | Legacy of Christian Feminism]

Weave of Faith

Christian Feminist Community

~ A Women-Church for Everyone ~

Weave of Faith : Christian Feminist Community is a unique independent worshipping community which has drawn international & national attention for our creative and participatory worship experience and religious focus.
Our members have been gathering since 1994 as a welcoming community which honors and brings forth the special spiritual gifts of the feminine while drawing from our judeo-christian traditions.
We are committed to :
- the feminist participatory process
- open spiritual exploration
- honoring our judeo-christian religious traditions, as well as challenging them
- including our children in our services
- passing on the rich legacy of christian feminism
- educating and inspiring seekers in christian feminism
- welcoming men who want to explore the Sacred Feminine
- developing a local, national and international network of christian feminists
- supporting our members through all the changing circumstances of life

 "A Natural (and feminine) spirituality tends to incorporate three very organic, basic,
but overlooked things into our sacred experience : the earthly, the now, and the ordinary."
- Sue Monk Kidd


More about Christian Feminism

It has been said that Weave of Faith

Is not only a vital worshipping community,

We are a Spiritual Journey

We are an Open & Welcoming Community

We practice the biblical ethic of hospitality

All sexual orientations are welcome

We believe we were all created in God's image

 "We seek to bring forth the Spirit of God from the Ghost of the Church."

 Join Weave of Faith
as we

    • Do our own theologizing
    • Create our own worship
    • Explore our own spiritualities
    • Create a new church experience




We meet at Lake Merritt Church

for our

Weave of Faith~Black Madonna Women's Circle

the last Monday of the month

Come to 1330 Lakeshore entrance
at the top of the steps
Knock to be let-in
Call in advance if you need to use the parking garage
so we can buzz you in

June-May, 2005

Jan. 31, 2005
Our Lady of Guadalupe

Feb. 28, 2005
Labyrinth Walk: Mary in the Labyrinth

March 28, 2005
Meditating on "The Secret Life of Bees"

April 25, 2005

May 23, 2005
(so as not to conflict with Memorial Day)

June 20, 2005


and at various times throughout the year





Social Events at Member Homes

  • House Churches
  • St. Patrick's Music Night
    with traditional Irish fare
  • Christmas Carolling Potluck


Call our message phone (510) 482-9319 for info

and to get on our email-list


adapted from Rachel C. Wahlberg

We open ourselves to God -- who created woman and man in God's own image and gave both sexes the care of the earth.

We open ourselves to Jesus, child of God, chosen of God, born of the woman Mary who listened to women and liked them who stayed in their homes who discussed the Kingdom with them who was followed and financed by woman disciples.

We open ourselves to Jesus -- who discussed theology with a woman at a well and first confided in her his messiahship who motivated her to go and tell her great news to the city.

We open ourselves to Jesus -- who received anointing from a woman in Simon's house who rebuked the men guests who scorned her I believe in Jesus who said this woman will be remembered for what she did minister of Jesus

We open ourselves to Jesus -- who healed a woman on the sabbath and made her whole because she was a human being

We open ourselves to Jesus -- who spoke of God as a woman seeking the lost coin as a woman who swept seeking the lost.

We open ourselves to Jesus -- who thought of pregnancy and birth with reverance not as punishment -- but as wrenching event, a metaphor for transformation born again anguish-into-joy.

We open ourselves to Jesus -- who spoke of himself as a mother hen who would gather her chicks under her wing.

We open ourselves to Jesus -- who appeared first to Mary Magdalene who sent her with the bursting message : GO AND TELL . . .

We open ourselves to the wholeness of a Diety in whom there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for we are all one in salvation.

We open ourselves to the Holy Spirit -- as she moves over the waters of creationand over the earth.

We open ourselves to the Holy Spirit -- the women spirit of God who like a hen, created us and gave us birth and covers us with her wings.

Blessings to you all.

Our Worship Experiences have varied over the years,
as we have been responsive to the needs and interests of our members


Sampler of Worship Services and Rituals




As interests arise, we invite people from various traditions and orientations into informal yet exciting theological and spiritual conversation.

Sampler of Previous Conversations

Religious Traditions Represented by Current & Previous Members

Our members have come from many religious traditions and cultural backgrounds

Methodist, Catholic, Lutheran, Episcopalian, Presbyterian, Baptist, UCC, Jewish, Native American, Quaker

Ordained ministers and deacons, religious women and seminary students

Seekers in Women's Spirituality and Creative Worship

 Leadership is Shared Equally

Co-conveners of our Weave of Faith-Black Madonna Women's Circle:

Elaine Amoruso & Mary Moore

 Rev. Sandy Gess



Masters of Divinity (M.Div),
Pacific School of Religion
Berkeley, CA

Certified Labyrinth Facilitator

United Methodist Pastor
St. Paul's UMC-Vacaville

  • Interviewed by the BBC
    Weave of Faith was featured on two programs dealing with the Bible and gender : "All About Eve" and the concluding program "Loose Ends."
    The genesis of this program grew out of John McCarthy's experience as a hostage in Lebanon (a span of 5 years), and explores the worldwide phenomenon of how the Bible is used as a social and political tool.

    The 2-cassette program is available in the UK from the BBC Shop
    • Other more well-known people who were interviewed for the series :
      Desmond Tutu, Pat Robertson, and Matthew Fox
    • Our Composer-in-Residence, Evelyn Avoglia composed original music "Un-Nameable Namer" for the recording.

 Rev. Sandy Gess was interviewed by
John McCarthy and Abigail Saxon, co-producers of a 2-part, twelve program radio series on the Bible :
"John McCarthy's Bible Journey."

Presenter on the Labyrinth as a Peace-making and Spiritual Tool
Parliament of World Religions
Barcelona, Spain
July, 2004

Delegates walking the temporary labyrinth which constructed in the Sikh tent
and used for early morning religious observances.
There was much interest in the labyrinth from all faiths, ages, and nationalities

Sandy Gess (representing Weave of Faith)
with the other Labyrinth Workshop presenters
who represented Veriditas and the Labyrinth Guild of New England


Sandy Gess enjoying the langur meal which was offered freely by the Sikh contingency for all the delegates of the Parliament of World Religions.
Estimated number of delegates served each day: 3,000 !

  • Interviewed by Malka Drucker for her book
    White Fire : A Portrait of Women Spiritual Leaders in America.
    Available from all major online book dealers and from one of our favorite local stores :
    Sagrada : Quality Religious Gifts and Books - 4926 Telegraph Ave., Oakland (510) 653-7196
    Read more about White Fire from the Publisher's Website : http://www.skylightpaths.com/books/640.htm
  • "Rituals of Healing Workshop"
    Pacific School of Religion's Earl Lectures & Pastoral Conference, January 1999
    Designed and taught by Rev. Sandy Gess and Dianne M. Winne, MD

    Weave of Faith is Participatory, Diverse and Rewarding
    Small Group Experiences
    Supportive Community
    We sustain each other throughout the week and throughout the changing circumstances of life
    Maintaining ties locally, nationally and internationally


     Pam Johnson


    ASL Interpreter

    ASL Teacher

    Bay Area Performer





     Evelyn Avoglia


    Our former Composer-in-Residence

    Now living in Connecticut, we are working with Ev on publishing the music she composed for our liturgies


    Frances Kennett

    [photo TBS]


    Oxford, England



    Malka Drucker

    [photo TBS]



    Santa Fe, New Mexico


    Rosemary Neave

    [photo TBS]


    Auckland, New Zealand


    China Galland

    [photo TBS]


    SF Bay Area, California



    Eleven Years of Weave of Faith

    ~ A Sampler of Images of Our Community ~


    Easter in a Feminist Key


    Welcoming a son to our community


    Our kids and mom find
    a new vantage point
    under the altar table


    Celebrating Purim -
    Our kids and Lake Merritt UMC kids

    Contact Rev. Sandy Gess - weavefaith@earthlink.net or (510) 482-9319 - if you're interesting in having us :

  • Conduct Workshops on Ritual Design and Creative Worship for your church or organization
  • Lead a Labyrinth Walk or Workshop
  • Teach classes or workshops on Christian Feminism and Women's Spirituality
  • Design and officiate at life-passage rituals, weddings, holy unions, baptisms, funerals, or house blessings
  • Guest preach

  • Weave of Faith's Message Phone : (510) 482-9319

    - We gather in Member Homes for social gatherings

    - Monthly Meditation Group is held in the Edwards Room of Lake Merritt Church

    - Labyrinth Walks are held at the beautiful domed Sanctuary of

    Lake Merritt United Methodist Church - Oakland

    on the southeast shore of Lake Merritt between 12 th & 18 th Streets

    1330 Lake Shore / front entrance

    1255 1st Ave./ parking lot entrance




    The church where we have our services is very supportive

    Some of their members regularly attend our services

    Some of our members are members of Lake Merritt UMC

    Weave of Faith / CFWC


    Lake Merritt UMC

    Lake Merritt UMC

    The church is on the southeast shore of Lake Merritt.
    The front entrance is on LakeShore between 12 th & 14 th Streets.
    The back entrance and parking lot is off of 1st Ave., near 14 th St. / International Blvd.
    1255 - 1st Ave.
    Look for the sign that reads : Lake Merritt Church
    Directions from Hwy. 580 (going towards Hayward) :
    Take Grand Ave. exit.
    Go straight across intersection.
    Turn right on LakeShore.
    Follow around the south shore of
    Lake Merritt to 1330 LakeShore.
    The front entrance is on your left.
    There is street parking on Lake Shore. Knock to be let in
    Better yet, turn around and park in the parking lot and enter through the back entrance on 1st Ave.
    Turn around, go back up Lake Shore,
    then turn right at 15 th Ave. and right again onto 1st Ave
    then turn right into parking lot which is after the stoplight
    at the intersection of 1st Ave. with 14 th Ave / International Blvd.

    Public Transportation

    The Lake Merritt BART station is an easy 1/2 mile walk to/from the church. From BART, walk in a northerly direction on Oak Street. You will pass the Oakland Museum and the County Courthouse on your right. Cross 14th St. then turn right, following around the perimeter of the lake to Lakeshore Ave. At the marked crosswalk, you will be directly across from the church.

    AC Transit buses run from BART to a stop in back of the church at the intersection of First Ave. and E. 14th St. / International Blvd near the entrance at 1255 First Ave. The bus routes are "40L" and "15." For current bus and BART info, call TravInfo 511.


    (connecting to Yahoo's Map It Resource)

    Front entrance : 1330 Lakeshore, Oakland

    Parking lot entrance : 1st Ave & International, Oakland

    Interested in being involved in organizing

    a network of Christian Feminist Worshipping Communities?

    Join us !

      ~ Links on this web page ~

    [ Home | Christian Feminism | Worship & Labyrinth Schedule | Directions | Leadership | Our Community ]

    ~ Links to additional web pages on the Weave of Faith website ~

    [   Worship and Rituals in a Feminist Key | Eucharist / Communion | Recipes - Communion Bread ]

     [ Statement of Purpose | Herstory of Weave of Faith | Co-Founders ]

     [ Labyrinth Project | Bibliography & Resources | Networking / Links ]

     [ The Sacred Feminine: Images & Names | Legacy of Christian Feminism]

    Contacting us

    Messages: (510) 482-9319


    Note: because of the amount of spam we have received, we have had to block much email.

    To get through to us, follow the instructions from our server,

    and add as your Subject "Inquiry-Weave of Faith"


    Top of Page

    Last updated : February 17, 2005

    Copyright © 1998-2005, S. J. Gess. All Rights Reserved
    Copyright Statement : All original materials on this WebSite are copyrighted by Sandy Gess for Weave of Faith, with the exception of materials adapted from resources as credited, or that are credited to other individuals. Please contact us for permission to use our materials.