"I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord." Psalm 122:1 "For now have I chosen and sanctified this house, that my name may be there forever: and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually." Second Chronicles 7:16
Our nation was just beginning to recover from the terrible effects of a civil war when members of the Lowell Street Methodist Episcopal Church in Nashville (an old name for Nashua) decided that it was time to erect a new edifice for the rapidly growing congregation that had been meeting on Lowell Street for nearly fifty years. Under the able leadership of the Rev. Ebenezer Smith and with the full commitment of the church's trustees, the decision was made to purchase the "Gay Estate" located at the corner of Temple Street and Main Street for the sum of $10,000. Shortly thereafter a portion of the property was sold in order to be able to proceed with the hiring of an architect (I.B. Samuels of Boston) and the building of this new church building. In all fourteen members of the Lowell Street Church purchased shares of $100.00 with some members mortgaging their homes. With this commitment in hand, the building commenced in the spring of 1867 with the cornerstone being laid on June 13, 1867.
The following year Rev. Smith was appointed to the New England Conference and the Rev. George Bowler became pastor in April of 1868. By this time the congregation was meeting in a room at City Hall while they waited for the completion of the new church building. By July of that year all was complete and on Wednesday, July 22 at 11:00am the congregation gathered in the sanctuary for the dedication of the Main Street Methodist Episcopal Church. Rev. Smith returned for the occasion along with several other former pastors. Rev. Bowler preached a rousing sermon based on the text included above from Second Chronicles. When the Main Street United Methodist Church celebrated its centennial anniversary in September of 1968, the Rev. Ernest R. Drake preached on this same text with his sermon titled, "A Century Later". As we celebrate our 150th anniversary with a "throw back" service on July 22, I will welcome the Rev. George Bowler back into the pulpit for what is hoped to be yet another rousing sermon based on this same text.
I hope that you will be able to join us for this special occasion as we recall the events of that wonderful day 150 years ago and commit ourselves anew to being an on-going vital presence here on Main Street for many years to come. This is a sacred space sanctified as "God's" house. May God's eyes and heart continue to be reflected in our worship, fellowship, learning, and service in and through this place.
Worship Ahead 7/22 The Ninth Sunday after Pentecost 150th Anniversary Throw Back Service
Scripture: Psalm 122; Second Chronicles 7:12-16 Special Music: Sharon Rose, soloist Theme: It was on Wednesday, July 22 in the year 1868 that the newly built "Main Street Methodist Episcopal Church" was dedicated to the glory of God and the service of humankind. Given that July 22of this year is on a Sunday, we will go back in time in our worship service and worship as though we were in the year 1868. (Don't worry, we will still use the AC if it is too warm!) You can expect a visit from the Rev. George Bowler, who as pastor in that year presided over the dedication on that day along with one of the original Trustees, Mr. Isaac Eaton. The sermon will be based on the original text used in 1868, Second Chronicles 7:16, which is also the text that the Centennial Celebration sermon was based on in September of 1968. You won't want to miss this fun and special occasion.
Pastor Rich's "Release" Time to Begin on July 23
As noted previously Pastor Rich will be away from the Main Street UMC from Monday, July 23 through Monday, September 3 as he takes advantage of "release" time. Pastor Dave Svenson, retired pastor and former pastor of the Main Street UMC will be filling in during this time. Please welcome Pastor Dave with open arms and a willingness to help in any way that is needed.
Thank you all so much for your loving presence in my life for the past seven years.
It has been such a joy to be among you and feel your loving touches.
YOU ARE AWESOME!
Ted Talk This Tuesday at 10:30am
Join us in the Ladies' Parlor this Tuesday to see a Ted Talk by Sally Kohn, a columnist and political commentator for CNN. She has a powerful vision for a more united United States that involves healing the hatred in our institutions and ourselves.
We're all against hate, right? We agree it's a problem -- their problem, not our problem. But as Sally Kohn discovered, we all hate -- some of us in subtle ways, others in obvious ones. As she confronts a hard story from her own life, she shares ideas on how we can recognize, challenge and heal from hatred.
Donate to MSUMC. Shop Amazon Smile July 16 and 17!
With the upcoming 150th Anniversary celebration in September, the Anniversary Committee has gathered historic quotes to share, taken from Methodism in Nashua, 1831-1982, by J. Lawrence Hall. We will include one with each MainstreeterOnline.
"Due to so many people living on the south side of the river near the mills, interest grew for a meeting house in that area. Rev. Lorenzo Barrows and the Official Board of the Orange-Lowell Street Church met and eventually bought a former Second Baptist property on the corner of Pearl and Chestnut Street. "The first Methodist Episcopal Society of Nashua became a reality in 1844."
"The subject of 'slavery' became involved in many walks of life – to say the least, it became a religious issue also. Because of strong beliefs for and against, some so expressed themselves by seeking a more common interest, and as such, this group favoring slavery formed the First Wesleyan Society and purchased rites to occupy a house over a basement store at the corner of Orange and Canal Street. The movement was consummated in 1848 in consideration of $500.00, payable to Benjamin L. Jones. This union was short-lived; lasting approximately two years before returning to the fold."