Thursday, February 23, 2017

On March 4 at Church of the Messiah

Santa Ana Sites #16

Perla Batalla – Perla’s House of Cohen

Grammy nominated singer-songwriter and longtime back up vocalist for Leonard Cohen, Perla Batalla will perform on Saturday, March 4 at 8 p.m. at Church of the Messiah (614 N Bush Street, Santa Ana, CA 92701). Presented by Santa Ana Sites and produced in association with the Boca de Oro: Art & Literature Fringe Festival, Batalla brings her powerful voice to the oldest operating church in Orange County. A veritable holy grail of sound, the concert will feature Batalla performing selections from Cohen’s great songbook as she pays homage to the late icon.
Batalla is among the few performing artists whose emotional power is equal to her magnificent voice. Her extraordinary vocals and culture-merging compositions have garnered worldwide critical acclaim, leading to seven solo albums and performances in some of the world’s most prestigious venues. Known for her tone, depth of emotion, and sublime expressiveness, her transcendent voice is a natural conduit for Cohen’s exquisite work, and the songstress will perform in English and Spanish accompanied by a pianist.
About Perla Batalla
Perla was born in Los Angeles, California, to a family immersed in music. Her Mexican father was singer and radio personality, and her Argentine mother ran a bustling record store called Discoteca Batalla. At the family record shop, literally at her Mother’s knee, Perla was exposed to an education of non-stop music that cut across genre and language. While her far-ranging influences are reflected in the eclectic choices of songs she writes, arranges and performs today, it is that voice that brings each song to a new light. She is the recipient of the United Nation’s Earth Charter Award for “extraordinary devotion to social and economic justice” and the Premio Fronterizo Award for “healing work in the world”.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Peace and Justice Film Series

Peace & Justice Film Series: 13th. - From Slave to Criminal with One Amendment
Wednesday, February 22 at 7pm
Upper Room

This acclaimed documentary on the history of black incarceration in the United States has won numerous festival and critical awards and been nominated for many others, including the Academy Award for Best Documentary of 2016. Selma DuVernay (Selma) makes the argument that the 13th Amendment, in abolishing slavery, created at the same time a loophole to replace slavery with the mass incarceration of Black Americans, a system that has continued evolving into the present.
The film was produced in secrecy and its existence made public only when its many accolades started rolling in.

"13th made me ashamed because it made me realize I'd stopped gasping. In its sweeping treatment of the history of American racism, the film brought me closer than I've ever been to understanding how it could be that so many people could have ever grown used to the moral catastrophes that were slavery and Jim Crow. How did they not wake up every morning, nauseated and panicked about what was happening? The same way people like me wake up in 2016 and take it as a given that there are 2.3 million people living in cages, a third of them black" (Leon Neyfakh, Slate).

Contact Biff Baker for more information at 
Find out more here.

Highlights from An Amazing Experience with AMOS Health and Hope in Cumaica Norte, Nicaragua

June 23-July 3, 2016

  • Amazing Rain - lots of Mud … but doable with the good boots
  • Hiking long distances via muddy hillsides to 64 homes to survey water filter usage and make repairs
  • Only 50% of the homes had or had ever had a filter and of those, only 50% were still functioning
  • Needs for lots of education and determining why filter usage is low in this community
  • We painted numbers onto the houses to make it easier for Catalino (health promoter( to do the census and track the families in the community
  • Saw 50 children in our Health Stations Day - measured for height and weight and checked via a small blood test for anemia - 21 of the children still have low growth/weight levels and are anemic. 
  • All given vitamins with iron and education of the need for nutrition and diet higher in iron
  • VOICES program provided an opportunity for the teenage girls in the community to learn more about themselves and how they can gain confidence and self-esteem... led so well by Angela and Rosario Caseres
  • Lots of fun activities for the children including photos and decorating of picture frames, music - learning and singing De colores, making of a handprint banner, beads/bracelets etc. etc.
  • So, a wonderful strong team, did great work, and are so glad we went and are in partnership with AMOS.

For More information about the work of Amos Health and Hope visit: