Every month, a small group gathers in the garden, on the first Sunday, for holy communion.
It's a lovely gathering of the people called Methodists willing to get up early in order to share Christ's table with each other. This Sunday, we celebrated our Wesleyan heritage with quotations from Methodists, hymns by Charles Wesley and Fanny Crosby, and of course, the Eucharist, which our founder, John Wesley, called a "means of grace" so necessary to keep us in relationship with God and one another. Around our table on the sidewalk out front, there were a few people who were also excited to lower their masks due to the new CDC guidelines that said outdoor air mitigates the risks of being in each other's presence.
And yet, there were others who preferred to keep their masks on. That's fine too. We get it. Some are immune-compromised or are caring for those with complicating conditions or have contact with kids or grandkids who are not vaccinated. Others are medical professionals who have seen even vaccinated people with COVID conditions or are worried about the Delta variant causing trouble in some places. Some are concerned to lower their guard after a year of cautious behavior. We support your decisions about your health and risk tolerance and will continue to take the safety measures we need as a congregation to care for the broadest amount of people.
So we continue to require masks indoors and understand they are optional outdoors.
Whatever your comfort level, go easy on one another and be gracious with each other–including the Safety/Re-entry team who is working hard to understand all the current scientific advice and make the best possible decisions for our diverse congregation that includes vaccinated and unvaccinated people in our gatherings.
The apostle Paul warns against being prideful and acting in ways that puff up yourself. Do not let your own sense of righteousness tear one another down. Rather, know that love–loving actions– takes pains to build one another up.
So go easy on one another and take care to build each other up.
P.S. Our 9:30 summer streaming service is now open for in-person registration. Worshipers may join us in the sanctuary beginning next Sunday (June 20th) and safety protocols will be followed and masks will be required. Please use the link provided below to register.
If you prefer to worship without a mask, join us outdoors on July 4 at 8:15 (Garden Holy Communion) or on July 11th at 9:30 am at Greeley Park (Gazebo).
Preparing for a controlled reopening: a message from the Re-entry team and Pastor Kristy
There is so much good news these days! The number of new cases of COVID-19 in Nashua continues to fall as people are vaccinated, and the number of vaccinated people is rising as youth aged 12-15 have been cleared for vaccination. We are encouraged!
In response to improving conditions in the pandemic, the Re-entry Team is relaxing some of the restrictions put in place at the beginning of the pandemic. Here's what's new:
Worship: Starting June 20th (9:30 service, Summer hours), up to 40 people will be welcome to attend the streamed worship service in the sanctuary each week. Masks, screening questions and physical distancing will still be required. Humming is okay, but singing is not yet considered to be safe in groups. Those who wish to attend will need to register in advance by calling the church office or signing up through the Eventbrite links that will be provided by Friday before the service. (This allows us to check people in quickly and do contact tracing in the case that a person tests positive for COVID-19 after the service.)
Small groups: Groups of up to 20 people will now be permitted to use the Vestry for meetings and events. Again, masks and screening questions are still required, and group leaders must call the church office in advance to schedule the time, so that groups don't double-book. Please give the office enough notice so that the room can be set up. Groups are responsible for disinfecting the Vestry after use.
Funeral Services are limited to 50 people in the sanctuary, not including ushers, health screeners and staff. A guest list with contact information will be provided to the church office at least 24 hours before the service to help facilitate check-in of all family and guests upon entering and to make possible contact tracing. Seating is physically-distanced by household. Masks must be worn over the mouth and nose at all times, regardless of vaccination status, except during the time when a person is speaking at the microphone. At this time, no live singing can take place. Receptions after the service must be held off-site, or outdoors, as group eating and drinking is not yet permitted in the building.
Health screenings: Temperature checks will no longer be required, and the travel question has been expanded to ask only about international and cruise ship travel, as the CDC recommends. Domestic travel is ok. Questions about symptoms of illness are still in place.
As always, your cooperation is essential in making these changes successful. We thank you for your patience and willingness to protect the most vulnerable among us, including children and vulnerable adults who cannot yet have the vaccine. We continue to look forward to greater freedoms, as conditions allow.
Wesley bros cartoons are a fun way to explore our Wesleyan heritage. Here are the discussion questions for the animated video for June 13th.
Our fantastic counters work so hard and diligently each Sunday and need a little Summer time off to recharge and relax. If you are available and/or able, we would greatly appreciate your help through the summer. Please contact Natasha Drew firstname.lastname@example.org
Golfers Get Ready!
$72.00 per golfer Team and Individual Registration is available
We can use additional support with sponsors. Personal Hole Sponsors @ $50.00/sign. Corporate Hole Sponsors @ $75.00/sign. Each sign is 8-1/2 x 11, laminated and attached to a sign board.
In 2020, we distributed thousands of materials around the world to neighbors who are trying rebuild their lives. But we need your help building on this work in 2021. Support CWS Tools to reach out to families fleeing their homes, recovering from disaster and more.
Be sure to include who your tool donation is in honor/memory/or celebration of so that we can recognize you in our Sunday morning bulletin!
Prime Day is Coming!!!
Prime Day is coming up on June 21st and will run through June 22nd.
Get ready for Prime Day! Sign up for AmazonSmile and select Main Street United Methodist Church as your preferred charityat smile.amazon.com/ch/02-0263867. Remember to shop fordeals atsmile.amazon.com, or with AmazonSmile ON in the Amazon app, and AmazonSmile will donate to us at no cost to you.
For our summer music this year, we are once more inviting the congregation to participate! This year, summer music will be virtual, so we will be using pre-recorded videos. If you are interested in singing, playing an instrument, or reading poetry, email Emily Adams email@example.com.
Mick Grzonka Presentation Review
Our interfaith connections continue to enhance our understanding of the world around us, this week through an enlightening presentation on Moral Economy by Lutheran scholar, Dr. Mick Grzonka. Examining the 1942 Freiburg Council blueprint, we learned how a group of Nazi-resistance economists, historians, pastors, theologians, and their wives prepared a moral and economic roadmap for life after World War II, hoping to prevent a similar disaster in the future. The parallels to current events were sobering.
Dr. Grzonka's 84 slides, full of data and historical documents, helped us to understand how stripping freedom and dignity from workers leads them to "atomize" into crowd-think and authoritarianism. He explained that the US was downgraded from a "full" to a "flawed" democracy as a result of lost confidence in institutional integrity, and he argued convincingly that our perilous economic system has produced higher infant mortality, worse health outcomes, and greater disparity in income and class when compared to similar and even less well-off economies. He predicted a difficult economic reckoning as the number of retired persons in the U.S. outnumbers working-age persons who can supply their needs.
Avoiding polarizing economic and political language, Dr. Grzonka argued convincingly that churches can and should use our language and expectations around morality and the common good to facilitate moral economic policy change. He offered recognizable economic concepts that identify a stable, moral economy. He invited churches to discuss what is lost or missing in the current economy and to provide a place where all people can find a sense of meaning, purpose and belonging. And he called us to claim our moral yardstick to evaluate economic and political entities, empowering our membership to bring their gifts to bear in forming a more moral, sustainable system. He recommended that we read the 1985 "Kairos Document," created by South African Christians in response to government Apartheid.
-Pastor Kelly and Pastor Kristy
Hi Readers of High Conflict,
When I found this quick read article on media literacy, it seemed a perfect add on for readers of this book. It gives tips on thinking critically about news we are bombarded with constantly and how to determine what is fact, fiction or partial truth. I attached the 3 page article. Take it or leave it. Here is the full credit info.:
Author: Linda Marsa. Illustrations: Illustration/Istock by Getty Images, Better Homes & Gardens June 2021, Volume 99, Number 6, Copyright Meredith Corporation 2021
I enjoyed our discussion. Thanks to Pastor Kelly for leading it.
The John Wesley banner in the sanctuary was designed in 2003 by Sharon Rose to commemorate the 300th anniversary of John Wesley's birth. It was assembled with the help of Sara Chambers and Melissa and Arthur Keefe at a Family Night workshop.
Pastor's Sabbath Days: Pastor Kelly: Tuesday Pastor Kristy: Friday
Days to Reach Pastors Pastor Kelly: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday Pastor Kristy: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
Mainstreet United Methodist Church · PO Box 1517 · Nashua, NH 03061-1517 · USA