Peniel, June, 2018


“Where Jacob Wrestled With God and Survived”


Temenos Catholic Worker

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

415-305-2124 (pay pal)

June, 2018—Pride Month—“Generations of Strength” and the Season of Pentecost

Fr. River Damien Sims, D.Min., D.S.T.,  Director


Journal of An Alien Street Priest

The season of Pentecost issues in with a song of love, from The Song of Songs “Set me like a seal on your heart, like a seal on your arm. For love is strong as Death, passion as relentless as Sheol. The flash of it is a flash of fire, a flame of Yahweh himself. Love no flood can quench, no torrents drown.”

For the coming of the Holy Spirit signals that all of life is loved by God in Christ.  When all spoke in one language it signaled the unity of all humanity and the call of all who follow Jesus to go forth as one to love every creature on earth. It is not with a soft emotional love, but with a fierce love encompassing each person and creature seeking to create community in the midst of differences, anger, and hate.

Christianity grew as a result of a love that created communities that shared everything with each other, that served people in the midst of plagues, wars, and places where humanity was hurting at the cost of their lives. Christians brought love, where there was no love. They bore witness with their lives. They stood with strength, they stood with faith in the Risen Christ. Love was as strong as death, and in the face of death, love prevailed. Jesus, walked, talked, lived and died through them!

We have seen flashes of that love in people like Dorothy Day, Mother Teresa, Francis of Assisi, and we see flashes of that love in all who reach out to the homeless, to those who meet those who suffer from illness—pushed away, hidden. We see flashes of that love in all who recognize our humanity as being  one—not separated by age, race, religion, sexual orientation, gender—we are human beings struggling on this journey of life.

We see this love in those who seek to share their wealth, until all are equal  in health care, housing, in acceptance. Wealth, money, does not separate but is seen as that which enables all to be equal and cared for.  The Kingdom of God is present here, and now!

The presence of the Holy Spirit tells us:

“There is only one Commandment: that we are to love. There is only one Gospel: that we are loved. Between these truths we live, and risk, and are transformed.”

Deo Gastritis! Thanks be to God!

San Francisco Pride – Generations of Strength, June 23-24, 2018

This year LGBTQ Pride will be June 23-24, on Saturday, June 23, and Sunday, June 24.  Temenos will be in charge of the accessibility area. Recently we were referred to as a “one man show,” we have never been a one man show. Each year volunteers, young, and old, work to provide care and support for those who have difficulty in accessibility of the Pride program. We need volunteers, please contact  and join us.

Weekly Meals

We seek to serve one weekly meal on the Haight and on Polk, but the reality is that Father River is unable to lift anything more than five pounds. That will continue indefinitely and in fact it may be permanent. We have been very lucky to have our best friend Jacob assist in the meals, but he is now away.

Volunteers are needed to give six hours a week in preparation, packing, and serving the meals.  We ask that the six hours be your major priority.

The meals have never been our focus, our focus is  pastoral care—hospital and jail visits, sitting with people and listening, and walking with them in their moments of crisis, we continue to provide socks, and snacks, we continue to advocate, and administer the Sacraments.

So the meals are not a priority, but are a great witness, and an opportunity for volunteers to enter into the lives of people who live on the street.


World Vegetarian Festival

In Cooperation with the Christian Vegetarian Association

October 27, 2018–10:00 a.m;–6:00 p.m.

San Francisco County Fair Building

1199 9th Avenue

San Francisco, CA 94122






As we enter the Summer of the year, our needs have been met, barely.  We have given away 50 plus thousand pairs of socks, our costs for food, tickets home, etc., have risen 50 percent.  We are always saying “no” more than we say “yes.”

The heart of what we do is our pastoral ministry.  It is sitting and listening as one young man talks of how he feels so low, because he is homeless, and everything he tries fails; one talks of how the city continually kicks him out of his sleeping place, throwing away his belongs, and of his feelings of fear and mistrust; another talks of his sexual abuse; one young girl talks of her fears and her sexual abuse, and so on.

We walk with hundreds each month. With some we celebrate the Sacraments, but mostly we listen, and the bread of life is broken in the words spoken.

So we beg on our knees for your gifts, that they may be turned into the Word made flesh in the lives of our homeless young people.

Rumor has it that Father River is on his last legs—I would not count on that—I have a lot more miles to go, and we need your support.


Checks to:

Temenos Catholic Worker, P.O. Box 642656, San Francisco, CA 94164








Congratulation to Our Graduates—Who Have
Supported Us This Past Year!


Terre Linda High School, 2018



Matthew Volkman-Lasky— Most  Faithful Friend, Confident,
Truth Teller, Hard Worker!


Kevin Lechner, Friend, Supporter, and a
Great worker!

Ethan Wales—Friend, and Supporter


Winston Ortiz

Friend and Supporter







As we write this section we feel much grief because it signifies these friends, who have walked with us are moving out into the world, and we wish them well!





Now May God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, bless, preserve, and keep you now and forever more!








Now May God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, bless, preserve, and keep you now and forever more!




Today the Gospel is from Matthew 11: 11-26, and Jesus remarked to his disciples who noticed the dead fig tree, which symbolized Israel, “Have faith in God. . .I say to you who ever says to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea’ and does not doubt in his heat and believes this will happen.”


This morning as I was eating in the cafe across the street I observed one homeless individual, talking to himself, and stripping his clothes off, four others going through the garbage cans looking for food. I sat there and ate my find meal, just watching, thinking of my day, my self, with out caring.


The dead  fig tree symbolized the death of Israel because her faith had become cold and stale, without caring for others, accept the maintenance of itself.  In the same way I thought of myself. I feed the homeless, I listen to them, I walk with them, and yet, I sit and observe, without caring. The question I raise is where is my faith.


That is the question all of us should raise as we walk the streets and see the problems and difficulties people have on the street, as we move among out friends, and fail to observe their pain, and find ourselves living in the world of texting, social media, and simply not caring.


Let us raise that question today and everyday.

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