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Celebrations to Mark Career of Methodist Bishop


Now that the Rev. Roy I. Sano, regional bishop of the United Methodist Church, has announced plans to retire, preparations are underway for several big send-offs. The official farewell celebration will come at the church's annual conference, which runs June 13-18 at Redlands University. Before then, four other celebrations are scheduled in Methodist churches across Southern California. This Sunday, Holman United Methodist Church will say goodbye at a 4 p.m. service for Bishop Sano. Other dates and locations include April 2 at Trinity United Methodist Church in Pomona, April 9 at San Dieguito United Methodist Church in Encinitas and May 21 at Simi Valley United Methodist Church in Simi Valley. Holman United Methodist Church is at 3320 W. Adams Blvd., Los Angeles, at (213) 250-8787. For further information, call the California Pacific Conference in Pasadena at (626) 568-7329.


Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church will sponsor Holy Hookup 2000, a weeklong revival, at 7 p.m. Monday through Friday at West Angeles Church of God in Christ, 304 S. Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles. The nightly services will feature the Holy Hookup choir drawn from several congregations and back-to-back sermons by two nationally noted preachers, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr. of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago and the Rev. Freddie Haynes III of Friendship West Baptist Church in Dallas. For information, call (323) 232-6300.


In a historic step toward Christian unity, bishops of the Catholic, Episcopal and Lutheran churches will conduct a joint Ash Wednesday service at USC. Cardinal Roger M. Mahony of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, Bishop Frederick Borsch of the Episcopal Church and Bishop Paul Egertson of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America will preside over a noon service at the university's Bovard Auditorium. Church leaders say the service may mark the first Ash Wednesday at which leaders from the three faiths have gathered since the Protestant Reformation divided Christendom nearly 500 years ago.

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent, the 40-day period of preparation leading up to the celebration of Christ's resurrection on Easter.


Loyola Marymount University tonight will honor the Very Rev. John S. Bakas, dean of St. Sophia's Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Los Angeles, for his contributions in the Greek American community. As a priest in the Greek Orthodox community for more than 20 years, Bakas has focused on community outreach and pastoral work in California, New Mexico and Nevada. In addition to founding St. Basil's Church in San Jose, Bakas started the Philoptochos Camp AGAPE for disadvantaged children with cancer, Camp Axios for inner-city children, the Rotary House Children's Hospice in Fresno, and Project Nino-Mexico, an organization which offers free medical care to poor children in Mexico through Rotary International.


* On Sunday, as part of a West Coast speaking tour, Brazilian theologian Sister Ivone Gebara will present a workshop on "The Role of Women/Men in the Church." The workshop will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Community Health Educational Center at 261 Junipero Serra Ave., San Gabriel.

From 4 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday, Gebara will lecture in Los Angeles on "The Leaven of Feminism in the Churches of Latin America." For this engagement, Gebara will draw on themes from her recent book, "Longing for Running Water." The lecture will be given in the fourth-floor auditorium at Dongguk Royal University, at 440 Shatto Place. Gebara's tour is co-sponsored by the Immaculate Heart College Center through a grant from the Sister Fund and the Sisters of the Holy Names.

A $10 donation is suggested for both events.

* On Sunday night, the Museum of Tolerance will present "An Evening with Rabbi Benjamin Blech," a humorous evening focusing on his trilogy of Idiot's Guides including "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Jewish History and Culture." Blech, a professor of Talmud at Yeshiva University, is the recipient of the American Educator of the Year Award and a former president of the National Council of Young Israel Rabbis. The museum is at 9786 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles. Admission is $7, $6 for museum members.

* Crenshaw Christian Center, home of the Faithdome, will hold Global Summit 2000, a weeklong gathering, at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. The meetings will focus on how to organize to help impoverished communities here and abroad. Crenshaw Christian Center is at 7901 S. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles. For more information, call (323) 758-3777, Ext. 4245.

* The Inland Harp Ensemble will perform at 4 p.m. Sunday at the First Congregational United Church of Christ, 3041 N. Sierra Way, San Bernardino. Six harpists will play music from the Renaissance through the 20th century from Ireland, Scotland, Germany and the United States. Donations will go toward the church's AIDS Meals program.


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