Category Archives: Events

photos from reception for Jade

I think I can speak for all of us when I say we all enjoyed Jade’s show immensely. My favorites were Gertrude Stein and Sylvia, I think. Wow. Anyway, after the performance we hosted a reception in our sanctuary, where Jade signed photos and chatted with folks.


What a smile!

Jade with Brea

Jade with Brea and her friend (Brea works with me at the YVCC Writing Center). My flash photography prompted Jade to tell the story of how his mother loves to take photos of him, so much so that she’s gotten within a few feet of him — during a performance! — while he’s playing Michelangelo in the act of painting.

Jade with Lou Cooper

Jade chatting with Lou.

Jade with Steve and Rev Jane

Steve had just arrived with two salads from Olive Garden for Jade and Rev. Jane.


Tri-City Herald article on Jade (May 11, 2007)

Jade will be at Gettman Hall (River of Life MCC) in the Tri-Cities tomorrow and Tuesday, performing Tortilla Heaven and ICONS Vol 1, just as he did here in Yakima this weekend. The Tri-City Herald published this article on him which I thought was worth duplicating here.

Jade Esteban Estrada tour lands in Kennewick

Tri-City Herald
By Dori ‘O Neal
Artwork by Angel Hess
May 11, 2007

Jade Esteban Estrada is a musician on a comedic mission to enlighten the masses.

If that sounds a little confusing, you’ll have to check out this funnyman’s shows May 21-22 in Kennewick.

The first of his two shows, Tortilla Heaven, is a bilingual performance written by Estrada’s sister Celeste Angela Estrada. It takes a humorous look at a Mexican American family struggling to hold onto their culture while living in the United States.

The second show, ICONS, he describes as a show that sort of picks up where the TV series Will and Grace left off, bringing gay people and their culture into the limelight in an entertaining and funny way.

Estrada, 31, took time out from his tour schedule for a phone interview with the Herald this week to talk about his music and comedy, as well as his insight into the gay rights movement.

“Much of my show focuses on gay people and the issues they face,” he said from his home in Texas. “I’m a storyteller who addresses uncomfortable topics, but I tell them humorously hoping that they will help enlighten people.”

He uses characters in his shows that are taken from gay people from history, such as Sappho (Greek poet), Michelangelo (artist), Oscar Wilde (playwright), Gertrude Stein (American writer), Sylvia Rivera (the 17-year-old drag queen from the Bronx who ignited the Stonewall riots in 1960s New York when she threw her shoe at the NYPD), and comedian Ellen DeGeneres.

“You’d be amazed how many people just don’t want to believe Oscar Wilde was gay,” Estrada said. “He was a complicated man, but I do keep my portrayal of him funny.”

Though Estrada’s shows are more funny than musical these days, that’s not how he got started in show business.

He first earned a name for himself as a Latin pop star about 10 years ago in New York City. But his life as an entertainer began as a young boy when he sang in his school’s choir in his native San Antonio.

He studied with Tony award-winning actress Zoe Caldwell in New York before he became choreographer for Latin personality Charo, then eventually launched his solo singing career in 1997.

Estrada has played to sold-out audiences all over the world. He figures his popularity comes from his ability to tell the truth about uncomfortable topics using humor.

“You can tell the truth without using a soapbox,” Estrada said. “I guess you could call my show part music, part social commentary, but it’s all entertainment.”

Yakima Herald-Republic article on Jade’s Yakima performances

Hi, all.  Here’s the article that appeared in today’s Yakima Herald-Republic. A couple notes: The article says there will be a reception with Jade before the performance. It will actually be AFTER the performance. And Gonzalez seems to have gotten the performances a little mixed up (when she starts to write about ICONS, she’s actually still talking about Tortilla Heaven?). See also our post on Jade for more information about his performance here at Rainbow Cathedral.  Laura

To get laughs, comedian crosses genders and generations


Submitted photoJade Esteban Estrada of Comedy Central fame is coming to Yakima this weekend, with shows at Davis High School and the Rainbow Cathedral Metropolitan Community Church.

Humor. Laughter. Two languages. Three generations. Eight characters.

One performer.

But it still adds up to humor that should give audiences some good laughs when Texas native Jade Esteban Estrada performs two shows in Yakima — a Friday night performance at Davis High School and a Saturday night program at the Rainbow Cathedral Metropolitan Community Church.

Estrada, who appeared on Comedy Central’s “Graham Norton Effect,” said Friday’s one-man show, “Tortilla Heaven” (which won the 2004 Literary Award for Best Play) will grip the cultural struggles Mexican-Americans face in assimilating into the United States while attempting to keep their traditions.

And the same is true for his Saturday performance, a solo play called “Icons: The Lesbian and Gay History of the World, Vol. 1.”

“It’s very important for us to discuss our differences to move on,” Estrada said during a phone interview last week from his San Antonio home.

During the Davis show, Estrada portrays characters from first, second and third generations. He plans to capture the struggles of immigrants and identify the “pressures of America,” which allows him to reach out to all viewers regardless of their ethnicity.

Although the play “Icons” — written by his sister, Celeste Angela, and directed by his brother, David Miguel — reflects his challenges as a fourth-generation Mexican-American and has hints of his relationship with his abuela (grandmother), it doesn’t focus on Estrada’s life.

“The story hits different aspects of (all) people’s lives,” the 31-year-old Estrada said. “There’s so much truth in it. It’s impossible for no one (to) understand it.”

And it’s a truth — with a snap of comedy — Maria Cuevas was searching for to close this year’s Yakima Valley Community College Cultural Diversity Series and kick off the college’s weekend conference of MEChA (Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan, or Chicano Student Movement of Aztlan).

Cuevas, diversity series organizer, said the performance touches various diversity issues facing the Yakima Valley and the country, including ethnicity, gender, language and race. And it allows the community to learn about them to later participate nationwide dialogues.

“It helps identify with the human element of the serious issue,” Cuevas said.

Lots of laughs

Jade Esteban Estrada offers two performances in Yakima this week:

* “Tortilla Heaven” — 8 p.m. Friday at Davis High School Auditorium. A reception starts at 7:15 p.m. General admission is $5 or free for students and seniors with ID. For more information, call Maria Cuevas at 574-6800, ext. 3151.

* “Icons: The Lesbian and Gay History of the World, Vol. 1” — 8 p.m. Saturday at the Rainbow Cathedral Metropolitan Community Church, 225 N. Second St. A reception and chance to chat with the performer precedes the show. General admission is $12 or $10 for students and seniors. Tickets are available at the door. For more information, call 457-6454.

Our funeral for Jesus: Our God, our God, why have you forsaken us?

Coffin (funeral for Jesus)













We held a funeral for Jesus tonight, as our Palm Sunday service. And it was a moving experience, especially when Rev. Jane invited us to partake of the bread and wine, one by one, up at the coffin, as a way to “pay our respects” to Jesus and to sup with him for the last time.

It was a service like none of us have ever been to before. It was new to all of us, including Rev. Jane. But it was our effort to get in touch with just how much our relationship with Jesus means to us — by getting in touch with what it would be like to lose him, to mourn his death… to try to imagine life without him.

We borrowed a coffin from a local mortuary. We began the service by processing around the building, carrying the coffin and singing “When the Saints Come Marching In” (in New Orleans style). We sang hymns, read and reflected on Psalm 22. Rev. Jane gave the eulogy, and we prayed for ourselves and for all people mourning Jesus’ death. Some of us spoke of our fondest memories of Jesus, what he’s done for us, and how hard it will be to live life without him. We ended by commending Jesus’ spirit unto God.

During this service, we were in a suspended time, as it were. We were pre-resurrection friends and disciples of Jesus. We comforted ourselves that Jesus our Master himself had had faith that God would in the end come to Jesus’ and our rescue. We realized that we don’t know what that help might look like. So while we grieved, we also held on to a hope that God would do something to make it all come out right. Jesus had this hope, so we will try to, too.

Our days will be sterile and dark now, without Jesus. But we have faith that we are living as if inside Psalm 22, waiting between verses 21 and 22… waiting for God to act.

Communion on Jesus’ Coffin

Here’s a copy of Jesus son of Joseph’s obituary (our Palm Sunday service will be a Memorial to Jesus)

Jesus Obituary

Rev. Jane’s interview on Woman-Stirred Radio now scheduled for April 5th

Rev. Jane’s interview on Woman-Stirred Radio is now scheduled for April 5th at 1:30pm Pacific Time.  We can listen to it live at by clicking on their “Listen Live” link.

Woman-Stirred Radio (WGDR 91.1 FM, Goddard College) features “interviews with GLBTQ writers, poets, musicians and artists from Vermont… and the rest of the world.”

What I went through to meet a biblical scribe

Hi, all. This October, as many of you know, a small group of us (Terry, Kathy, David, me, Deb, and Rev. Jane) studied the Dead Sea Scrolls in preparation for going to see some of them at an exhibit in Seattle. Below is a little piece I wrote about the experience of seeing actual biblical manuscripts. (I originally wrote it for my co-workers at the Writing Center (where I work), and had posted it on our blog there. This was before we had this church blog!) Anyway, hope you enjoy. Laura


(Parts of Psalm 119, found in Cave 11 and dating to the first century.)

I’ve studied biblical languages, taken biblical studies courses, stared at many a facsimile of biblical manuscripts, but there’s nothing as powerful as being in the presence of original ink on original parchment from two thousand plus years ago. So when I heard that a few of the Dead Sea Scrolls were coming to Seattle (to the Pacific Science Center), I knew I had to go see them. And I was really going just to see them. I actually cared less for what these particular fragments were saying or what they meant to modern day textual critics as much as for simply being in their presence.

If you don’t know already, the Dead Sea Scrolls are almost 900 documents, including texts from the Hebrew Bible, found in remote caves near the Dead Sea in the late 1940s and 1950s. They date from the 250 BCE to about 70 CE* – basically before and during the time of Jesus. Before these discoveries, the oldest extant manuscripts of the Hebrew Bible dated from the early middle ages, around 900 CE (although we do have New Testament manuscripts that go back to the first and second centuries CE). So if you’re a scholar, these discoveries are the finds of the millennium. They do wonders for your ability to tell the accuracy of the received text of the Torah, Prophets, Psalms, etc, as well as for your ability to better understand Christianity and rabbinic Judaism, both of which began just after these manuscripts were placed in these caves.

For me, I’d studied long enough already. So, when I found myself stuck behind clumps of people loitering around the first displays (you know – the ones showing facsimiles of the nearby Qumran settlement’s pottery, textiles, etc), I was frustrated. I figured, “To hec with this stuff! I want to see the scrolls!” So, like a doctor anxious to find the heart attack victim, I weaved my way through the people, hardly glancing at the other exhibits, until I got to the last room — “The Library.” As if I wouldn’t’ve been reverent anyway, the near-darkness told me I was entering a place of ancient human presences. Read the rest of this entry