Recently I watched on YouTube a synchronized effort by an amateur group. It was pretty good, except that I noticed that one of the participants had a really nice smile. The down side to the smile was that the rest of the group looked like they weren't having any fun whatsoever. That smile sent one message. The non-smiles sent another message. Many of our messages are non-verbal. As we try to welcome people to our church and to communicate the joy of our faith to others, we need to be aware of the non-verbal message. Visiting a church in Colorado, I was awed by the greeter at the door. He actually held out his arm and hand to better reach me. His infectious smile lit up the doorway. Wow, I felt welcomed. Non-verbal communication that made me feel welcomed and wanted. Let our communication tell of the joy of our faith.
Epistle - Ephesians 5:16-21 - Paul cautions his readers to be careful how they live Gospel - Matthew 6:1-4; 7:1-5 - Jesus warns his readers to avoid playacting A Modern Word - "Casting Call" The importance of being real in our faith is examined.
Rolling River Rampage Was a Big Splash with our Rafters!
Last week at our Rolling River Rampage Vacation Bible School, a total of 23 rafters, had the adventure of a lifetime with God! They enjoyed snacks, arts and crafts, science experiments, fun and games, singing and puppets and stories on the river bank as they learned about Jesus and his followers and how much God loves us all. Our oldest group of rafters delivered the school supplies you donated to the Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter and had a tour, then everyone enjoyed one last snack together at God's table.Thank you to all our volunteers, to parents, grandparents, sisters and other drivers who made sure the children were able to get to the church to participate this week, to Pastor Dave for being with us whenever he was able, and most especially to God for all God's marvelous works and the gift of Jesus. Amen
-submitted by Mavis Pyle
Sunday School News
Sunday School at Main Street will be a little different this year. We will open the year with a tie-in to our 150th anniversary celebration, and then will continue with a rotation format, similar to what we do in Vacation Bible School. This will require a different set-up in the Wesley Education Center and, a different way of teaching. The Education Committee will be holding an information and training session in the near future and we hope you will consider becoming a part of this new venture. Watch your Mainstreeter blasts and bulletin announcements for more details. Thank you.
-submitted by Mavis Pyle
A Conversation with Francis
"I want to go back to the Yucatan Peninsula where I was born to end my suffering," said Francis who like his Mayan grandmother, is not even five feet tall and gestures with his hands as he talks. "America, the richest country in the world, isn't supposed to have homeless people like me. In Mexico I may not get work, but my family will always give me a place to sleep."
The oldest of eight children, Francis was born in Merida, Mexico and left his job in a shirt factory at age 20 to go to California. Back then, all he needed to get in was a passport and his parents' signatures. He ended up in San Bernardino at a horse farm where he mucked stalls and fed horses. He learned to wait an hour after the horses exercised before feeding them.
After a number of years, Francis felt the urge to go to New York City. The owner of the horse farm said there would be a job waiting for him, if it didn't work out in the big city. But he just had to go and became a hotel doorman and elevator operator. While working at a hotel on Riverside Drive, he met Kevin Bacon before Kevin because famous. "A very nice man," according to Francis.
Then came 9/11 and New York was a city in turmoil. Francis lost his job and he and hundreds of others slept in tunnels. It was time to move on.
Salem, Massachusetts, the city of witches, fascinated Francis so he moved there ready to experience the supernatural. But he soon realized it was a tourist trap and the witches weren't real. He found a job with the parks and recreation department and cleaned the city parks and Willows Casino. His bosses liked him because he worked from 5am to 10pm. He didn't drink, smoke or do drugs, and had no criminal record or history of mental illness. He was the model worker and they treated him well for ten years until their funding was cut and they had to lay Francis off.
Gloucester seemed like an interesting city to visit, so that's where Francis went next. By then he was over 60 and not as marketable a worker. He ended up going to a shelter but could only stay 30 days, and then he was on the streets—homeless. When he applied for jobs, he was asked for his home address. When he said he was homeless, they wouldn't hire him. When he applied for services from the town or state and they discovered he had no addictions or mental or criminal record, he was told he didn't need their help. So Francis drifted from town to town, shelter to shelter, and a few weeks ago, found himself in Nashua. Again he was limited to 30 days in a shelter.
People along the way were kind. A woman at Dunkin Donuts gave him free coffee and toiletries, Café Agape was welcoming, a Mexican restaurant offered him work but not enough pay for housing.
He told me he's tired of suffering. He wants to go home, but doesn't have money for bus fare.
On Thursday, August 2 at 9:00am, Frank, a Cafe Agape friend, drove Francis to the Boston Express at Exit 8. Francis had a ticket that we at MSUMC bought him that would take him from Boston to Los Angeles. Before he left, he asked Pastor Dave for his blessing and then made us a deal. When he gets to Merida, he will send a thank you note to 154 Main Street, Nashua.
-submitted by Mary Marchese
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.
Stepping back in time again to the Chestnut Street Church, that later merged with us, some information from the history book is very relatable to Main Street. In 1872 they reported "Annual rental of stores and parsonage being $650.00. Apparently the presiding elder paid $200.00 per year rental on the parsonage…A new innovation was injected into the services, that of doing away with a quartet and introducing congregational singing.This reduced the expense considerably and proved more satisfactory." However, by 1875 "the failure of the Curtice G. Wood market, and not renting the tenement for a period of time, created a financial loss of $600.00…It was voted to work a plan by raising two cents per week for each member as far as practicable."
[During this same time period] "The financial struggle of the Main Street Methodist Episcopal Church was somewhat nurtured by the collecting of pew rents.This was carried out by a committee of six collectors." At some point they were paid salaries as the book later states, "As prosperity progressed, the 'Sallery of the Pew Rent collector' was adjusted to $50.00."
Latest issue of 'Connected' is available
"Connected" is a monthly newsletter/bulletin designed to put Methodist Conference news directly into the hands of local church members. Get the latest issue here