The Confirmation Class has been exploring spiritual practices that keep us nourished and attentive to the light in this season of deepening darkness. We are experimenting with various prayer practices, pilgrimage, journaling, relationship building, mindfulness. We have put ourselves in the Bible story, examined stories in the Apocrypha from voices we don't often hear. Each week we check-in with stories of God-sightings, kindnesses we have spied, creativity we've experienced, injustices we might impact, life-giving and life-draining moments. And there's been a lot that falls into the life-draining category. As anxiety and uncertainty continues in this pandemic, as people continue to be stressed and unhappy with safety protocols, let's remember that our youth and kids are watching how we adults interact with one another in trying times. They notice how our faith informs our living, or appears NOT to impact our ability to care for our neighbors. They see behavior that puts individuals first and doesn't consider the health of the wider community or young people who haven't been able to get vaccinated or boosted yet.
It's the first time I've had a Confirmation Class that contains all students who were baptized at the church. They talk about the importance of this church in their faith development. We appreciate the mentors and prayer partners who are part of this journey.
We look forward to worshiping with you on Christmas Eve either online or in-person, to be shaped into the church with a heart in the heart of Nashua.
-- Pastor Kelly
Fellowship Virtual Coffee Hour
Be sure to join us for our Virtual Coffee Hour and Fellowship Time following the 10:30 am service. We look forward to seeing you there!
We at Main Street UMC are so looking forward to celebrating Christmas with you this year! The chaos and uncertainty of pandemic have, perhaps more than ever, prepared us for the coming of Emmanuel. We need to experience God with us now!
In order to include as many people as possible in our Christmas Eve celebration, we will live-stream our Christmas Eve service at 7:00 p.m. on Facebook and YoutubeLive. The church website: https://www.mainstreet-umc.org/will provide links for joining the service online.
If you feel the need to be present in the sanctuary for the service, 100 people (including worship leaders, etc.) may pre-register to attend with masks and physical distancing, beginning on Sunday, December 5th at 1:00 p.m. and ending on December 23rd at noon. Those who wish to register for in-person worship only may do so at the following link...
...or by calling Pastor Kristy at 603-882-3361 x16 and leaving a message.
We look forward to celebrating the birth of Christ with you online and in person!
Beloved in Christ:
The Holiday season began with Thanksgiving gratitude. We are here, living these God-given lives. God is with us in the messiness of our times. Ingenuity from God's creative energy is serving churches well as we adapt. Stick-to-itiveness flowing from faith is evident in our leaders and congregations. We look forward to the NEAC's 2021 After Christmas recorded worship for seasonal use.
It is another strange season! Do you feel the absurdity of seeing COVID numbers rise while vaccinations also rise? It's a natural response to ask, "Is this working?" even when we know that vaccinations, masks, and clean air exchange do indeed work. These are tools in the battle to overcome the virus' spread.
We experience the paradox of being inundated with information daily, yet still not finding everything we want and need to know. We feel a pile-on of stresses. We may experience what social scientists now call, "languishing," a loss of motivation and energy to deal with long-term challenges.
Then we remember the mess that Jesus was born into; the raw reality of the nativity, the ominous first-century political environment, a young family fleeing from violence into the land of their ancestors' captivity. In the face of adversity, as those who follow the God revealed in Jesus Christ, we are called to the hopeful kind of response modeled by Mary and Joseph.
We remember the future our Creator promises:
"See, the homeof God is among mortals. God will dwellwith them; they will be [God's] people, and God will be with them; [God] will wipe every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more; mourning and crying and pain will be no more, for the first things have passed away." — Revelation 21.3b-4
We're not powerless as God shepherds us through this mess. There are things we can do such as:
Stay calm as new SARS COVID 19 variants are identified.
Listen to science as researchers learn.
Identify specific things you can do at different points on the continuum of cases rising and falling and share your ideas.
For example, in worship you can clap, stomp, snap, or hand drum when conditions prevent singing.
In fellowship, can bring encouragement and joy. Perhaps choose a school or medical facility each week to support their staff. Practice prayer that offers anxieties to God and receives God's empowering Spirit.
Collect and tell stories of resilience. Be a witness to God's work.
Take time to grieve well the losses you've experienced.
Send support and encouragement to hospital workers.
Allow gratitude for small things to find a place in your day.
Have a Blessed Advent, New England Conference Re-Entry Team Karen L. Munson, Jill Colley Robinson, Taesung Kang, Rick McKinley, and Beth DiCocco
Due to upcoming inclement weather our Faith Formation event is cancelled. Sunday School packets can be picked up on Saturday from 1:00-3:00 pm or on Sunday after the 10:30 am service. Thank you for your understanding.
Dazzling December Holiday Lighting Contest! Presented by Granite State Credit Union
Voting takes place December 10th - Jan. 3rd
Great American Downtown's second annual holiday lighting contest invites Nashua homes and Downtown businesses to get festive and brighten up our winter nights with their most magical displays of lights and decorations!
Check out the photos on our contest page, and plan on printing our driving-tour map once it up. Then pile into the car with the kids and be dazzled!
Heart of Nashua Food Assistance Ministry: This Christmas, the Missions Work Area will provide gift certificates to our New American Families instead of assembling boxes. We encourage those families, as well as anyone in the Nashua area who needs food, to go to the Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter during the week before Christmas for Holiday boxes. Boxes of produce and other food will be available from 11 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. at the Soup Kitchen on these days:
Thursday. December 16 Friday, December 17 Monday, December 20 Tuesday, December 21 Wednesday, December 22 Thursday, December 23
If you wish to help provide the gift certificates for purchasing gift cards for our New American families, you can add a check to the church into your envelope with "Christmas basket gift cards" in the notes line. Many thanks to those who have continued to support the food pantry. Gift cards will allow them to have traditional foods or some of the basics that an ordinary food basket will not provide. Thank you for your assistance. Special thanks to Beatrice Bahati for making sure that families in need get the cards.
Gifts for the King:Thank you! Some of you shopped online for the Amazon wish list, and some shopped locally for warm jackets, snow pants, mittens, and gloves. And some of you knit hats and mittens yourselves! These are already at the Soup Kitchen, being assembled into Christmas gift packages for client families of the Soup Kitchen. Thanks also for the socks for Stepping Stones and other programs that help our neighbors in need. The bin is filling up!
UMCOR tornado response: Remember that your gifts to the United Methodist Committee on Relief already have provided the base for any specific giving that you want to donate toward tornado disaster relief in Kentucky and other states. You can write your check to Main Street UMC and put "UMCOR December tornadoes" on the note line. All of the money donated now will go to that specific cause. You can give directly to UMCOR at https://advance.umcor.org/p-620-umcor-us-disaster-response-and-recovery.aspx For now, local Methodist teams with chain saws are just beginning to help clear downed trees, and initial grants have been given to the conferences in need of so much help. Later, Volunteers in Missions teams will help with long-term recovery and rebuilding.
Queen bed frame and mattress needed for a new family resettled from Burundi. Talk with Phyllis Appler if you have a bed frame or connection with local mattress vendor.
Do you have furniture you would like to donate? We have partnered with the Congregational Church of Amherst and their homestarter program. Our youth are able to take advantage of this resource when they move into their first apartments. They will even pick up donations and deliver furniture to the youth.
Let's have some vocabulary fun! Acronyms are accepted.
Deadline for entries is Sunday, December 19th.
Coming in January: HALF TRUTHS by Adam Hamilton -- Combined youth and adult class
The confirmation class and the adult Vestry class will join for this series, exploring popular sayings that miss the point. They are simple phrases: "God helps those who help themselves," "Love the sinner, hate the sin," and others. They sound Christian - like something you might find in the Bible. We've all heard these words. Maybe we've said them. They capture some element of truth, yet they miss the point in important ways. Discover the whole truth by comparing common Christian clichés with the wisdom found in Scripture.
This video-based class will be led by Paul Pederzani and/or Pastor Kelly, and lively discussion is assured! Starts Sunday mornings at 9:00 a.m., January 2nd-30th, 2022.
This is an event that Pastor Kelly and some of the confirmands are interested in participating in. It would be great if we could form a MSUMC team!! If you are interested in joining them on Sunday, February 6th 2022, please contact the Main Office: firstname.lastname@example.org
Attention Runners and Walkers:
From February 5th to the 13th, participants will be challenged to complete a 5K, 10K, or Half Marathon walk/run course with challenge stops along the way that we're calling the "Nashua Nor'Easter Run / Walk".
Runners can compete for the fastest time or the most points by completing individual exercises, including lunges, burpees, squats, pushups, army crawls, etc. Throughout, runners will learn about the many great nonprofits that make up the community safety net because that's where the stops are!
The money raised will go to the Safety Net Programs, which is supporting a wide range of needs and people. Runners "win" by doing something great for themselves as well as the community at large! Awards, incentives, and raffles are bonuses available to participants too! It will culminate with a Celebration at Boston Billiards Club & Casino on February 17th.
1. Save your donation receipts. The 2021 IRS CARES Act provides a $600.00 charitable deduction for a married couple and a $300.00 deduction for an individual.
2. Direct charitable gifts from your IRA to a qualified charity without being taxed on the distribution for those over the age of 70 1/2 and who have an IRA account. Call us to find out more about this wonderful opportunity.
3. Gift your appreciated stocks or mutual funds to your church to avoid paying a capital gains tax. The stock market has done well this year so to simplify the transaction, you can gift the stock to the Foundation. We will process the gift, then send the sale proceeds to your church.
4. Talk to us about the Foundation's charitable gift plans. If your tax planner suggests making a large tax-deductible charitable gift to help lower your tax bill, the Foundation can work with you and your advisors to maximize both your gift and tax benefits through either our Donor Advised Fund, Donor Endowment Fund, or Gift Annuities.
Contact Gary Melville at 800-595-4347 x103 with any questions ?or if you would like to arrange a gift planning consultation.
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