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News

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council continues to explore options to address parking constraints in the downtown triangle.

The Los Altos City Council last week held the first of two study sessions to discuss the potential construct...

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Schools

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A Los Altos High School student learns how to use robotic surgical equipment at the school’s Science and Technology Week event last year. Students can also attend hands-on presentations at this year’s event, w...

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Community

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display


Town Crier File Photo
Pirate Manor is once again scheduled to arrive in the front yard of Dane and Jill Glasgow’s home on Manor Way in Los Altos, just in time for Halloween.

Although not the Walking Dead, pirate skeletons have been brought to li...

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Sports

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Eric Reitmeir launches the ball over Mountain View High driver David Niehaus (2) and goalie Kenny Tang. The host Lancers won Friday’s non-league game 9-3.

There wasn’t a lot on the line Friday when ...

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Comment

Reeder, Fung for El Camino HCD: Editorial

The good news for the El Camino Healthcare District (formerly the El Camino Hospital District, for those still getting used to the new name) is that there is a contested election Nov. 4 for the district’s board of directors. Three candidates are runn...

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Special Sections

Plant-based diet offers benefits

Plant-based diet offers benefits


Photo by Ramya Krishna
Los Altos resident Nandini Krishna prepares a meat-free dish According to author Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., M.D., a plant-based diet can help prevent cancer.

Shirley Okita of Los Altos has found that adhering to a mostly plant...

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Business

New shop offers haute couture for girls

New shop offers haute couture for girls


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Girls @ Los Altos at 239 State St. offers clothing lines such as Nellystella as well as toys and other items for girls.

Cecilia Chen opened The Girls @ Los Altos as a tribute to the party dress. Whether it’s for...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

BARBARA DARLING MERIDETH

1946-2014

Born in Palo Alto, raised in Los Altos, retired in southern Oregon. Survived by Peter James Merideth, sons Matthew, Jacob and John Merideth, the loves of her life.

She was a housewife who took great pride in her home, her surroundings and...

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Travel

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors


Courtesy of Castello di Amorosa
Castello di Amorosa in Calistoga, above, boasts a beautiful setting for viewing fall’s colors – and sampling the vineyard’s wines.

Yes, Virginia, there is fall in California.

The colors pop out in...

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Stepping Out

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn



Los Altos Youth Theatre’s production of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” a musical based on Washington Irving’s classic story, is set to run through Nov. 2 at Bus Barn Theater. The cast comprises 27 young actors, directed by Cindy Powell. Courtesy o...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Jonah’s message offers lessons on love, repentance and grace

For the past couple of weeks at Union Presbyterian Church of Los Altos, we have been looking at the Book of Jonah, unique among the Bible’s prophetic books.

At this point in history, the northern kingdom is named Israel and the southern, Judah, but neither is mentioned in Jonah. In fact, the book is the only time a prophet of God is sent to another people group. Jonah is sent to proclaim God’s coming destruction on Nineveh, a city in Assyria, near modern-day Mosul.

Before the mission, Jonah was a prophet who encouraged the king of the northern kingdom to go to war and expand the boundaries of the kingdom. But now God is sending him to foreigners. Jonah runs away to avoid doing what God commanded, heading as far in the opposite direction as possible.

But God still had a calling on Jonah’s life and a job for him to do.

Jonah ends up going to Nineveh and preaching to its people. Lo and behold, the people listen and repent. They put on sackcloth and ashes and fast – all of them. Then we get to see God’s grace as He relents from the destruction for a time.

Scholars believe Jonah was written circa 780 B.C., and the destruction of Nineveh unfolds at the hands of three combined armies in 612 B.C. So for a time, God put the destruction of Nineveh on hold.

Jonah, though, is very angry. He really wanted God to destroy Nineveh, an enemy of his beloved Israel. Jonah had a feeling that he wouldn’t have been sent in the first place unless God was going to show mercy to Nineveh.

I think we can take a couple of lessons away from Jonah.

First, God loves all sorts of folks: Israelites and Ninevites, Americans and Iranians, people from every corner of every nation. God has a claim on every life because He created that life and sustains it.

Second, God loves repentance. Jonah repented in the belly of the fish, and the Ninevites repented when they heard the message Jonah carried from God.

Third, God is full of grace – for Jonah, for Nineveh, for us. We all need Jesus and the forgiveness He offers.

Finally, beware of the idols we worship without recognizing them. Jonah’s idols were his country and himself. When God offered grace contrary to Jonah’s will, Jonah told God simply to kill him. Idolatry is much subtler these days – it can be scientific materialism or nationalism, a political point of view or a bank account. There are all sorts of things that draw our attention away from God.

If you are of a mind, read Jonah again and review some of my recent sermons posted on our church’s website.

The Rev. David Moore is pastor of Union Presbyterian Church of Los Altos, 858 University Ave. For more information, call 948-4361 or visit unionpc.org.

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