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Mayor Jean Quan recruits Shiloh Church to improve Oakland

Sunday Mayor Jean Quan visited Shiloh Church in Oakland, CA
Sunday Mayor Jean Quan visited Shiloh Church in Oakland, CA
MJ Kasprzak

Inside Bay Area continued to address the issues surrounding the second cell phone/texting and driving incident of Oakland Mayor Jean Quan Sunday, July 20. Meanwhile, she was speaking at Shiloh Church recruiting partners with the goal of moving the city in the right direction.

Mayor Quan acknowledged she was running for re-election but told the 9:00 a.m. service that she was making the rounds through churches to recruit partners. Community involvement was key to some turnarounds in Oakland like murder rate, robbery and burglary. She cited healing between the police force and the community as key in that improvement, discussing at length the high percentages of minorities and women joining the force.

She also stressed the importance of Christian participation, even referencing her ongoing partnership with Shiloh Pastor Emeritus David Kiteley. She said partnerships like these are key moving forward to address some of the the remaining problems because too many of the problems are rooted in a lack of Christian families or families at all.

Mayor Quan specifically mentioned the Ceasefire program wherein she and community advocates walk the toughest streets of Oakland on Friday afternoons and evenings. Christianity is heavily represented in this program, including from Shiloh.

She spent most of her time speaking about programs reaching out to young people. One of the areas she lauded as an opportunity for young people without education past high school is construction, where they can make over $100,000 a year with overtime. She also stated priorities of focusing on the formerly incarcerated and mentoring the 2000 toughest children graduating from foster care.

Mayor Quan also noted disparate unemployment rates in certain Oakland communities and led with an alarming statistic:

It is not okay that 50 percent of the black/brown men in high school are not graduating.

Her Shiloh speech was a little over five minutes long, taking place after worship but before Pastor Patrick Kiteley's sermon. She concluded her by quoting Galatians 6:9:

Let's not weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap if we faint not.

She then stayed for Pastor Patrick's sermon on Philippians 3:1-7 that described the dogs the apostle Paul referenced as Christians trying to measure themselves against one another or the world. Afterward, Mayor Quan greeted some of the congregation but did not appear to be at the 11:00 a.m. service.

Note: MJ Kasprzak is a deacon at Shiloh Church. There was no special announcement about Mayor Quan's visit beforehand, and her visit nor this article should not be considered an endorsement of her re-election.