I'm in Minneapolis this week at the Festival of Homiletics -- basically a huge trade show for preachers with speakers, worship, and exhibits. In the evening we can catch a podcast being taped, or go sing at beer and hymns.
It's one of the few places us pastors get to be around clergy from other denominations. This year's theme is "Preaching Hope for a Weary Land" but it could also be "preaching hope to one another" because clergy, like everyone else, are experiencing the cultural shifts away from religion, away from joining churches, away from valuing the church community. We need to hear from speakers like Brian McClaren, Yvette Flunder, Brian McKibben and others who can help us envision church differently. And there's always a bunch of young, up-and-coming entrepreneurs and theologians challenging us "older" pastors with their provocative ideas.
It reminds me of the shifts we've been through several times in the church --if you take a very long view. When such cultural change is upon us, the gifts of Wonder and Invention take center stage for a while. We need folks who can dream and envision what church might mean in this new environment. And we need others who can remain open and curious enough to have hope in a weary land.
Join us on Sunday, as I share some of the learnings from the conference. More of a state-of-preaching address than a sermon. All the preachers sit at the airport on Friday waiting for our flights with our laptops out crafting away for Sunday.
So that's what I'm up to in Minneapolis.... listening to dreamers and allowing myself to remain open and curious.
Pretty please, with sugar on top! If you haven't had your photo taken on a previous Sunday, please upload them or email to the Office. We want everyone represented in our new photo directory. Sunday photographers will not be available unless requested now. Your at-home high-res photos are encouraged and welcomed!
Once you RSVP below, send $8 per ticket to the Church Office and write "Baseball" on memo line of check. Tickets will be held in your name at "Will Call" the evening of the game. You must RSVP in order to attend and have tickets waiting for you at the game.
We can all meet at Main Street UMC at 2 and drive over together
to visit the mosque and be good, welcoming neighbors.
AUGUST 29TH - SAVE THE DATE
A NIGHT WITH AUTHOR CARTER HEYWARD
"THE 7 DEADLY SINS OF WHITE CHRISTIAN NATIONLISM: A CALL TO ACTION"
Summer keynote event: The Seven Deadly Sins of White Christian Nationalism: A Call to Action.
At Unitarian Universalist Church, Concord, NH
We are SO excited to welcome the Rev. Dr. Carter Hayward to New Hampshire on August 29th. In a time of rising hate activity across our state, Rev. Dr. Heyward is going to talk with us about her book, the Seven Deadly Sins of White Christian Nationalism. Together, we will learn about action steps we can take in our own churches and communities as we grow our muscles in this work together.
There will be opportunity to spend time together in both small and large groups, and to connect with other voices of faith from across the state who are also interested in doing this work. Registration, and more details about our book group accompanying this event coming next week!
Thanks to our partners at the NH Conference of the UCC, and Episcopal Diocese of NH who are working with us. We hope you will save-the-date, and join us.
This summer, we're BLASTING OFF! To Mars and Beyond... we'll learn how God can empower us to GO BEYOND with faith, boldness, kindness, thankfulness, and hope. We're on a mission, and we'd love to have you voyage with us!
Monday, July 31st through Friday, August 4th
9:00AM until 12:00PM
(Ages 3 years through 6th Grade)
Register your space below.
Interested in helping us out? There are a variety of ways to volunteer your hands, time, and heart! Click below to fill out the volunteer form or contact Andrea Weir to find your perfect fit!
A new Vestry Class is starting April 2nd at 9:00 a.m., running through June 11th.
Hearing a lot of buzz about the "end times" these days? Join us as we explore Craig C Hill's study, "In God's Time," which explores the way the Bible talks about the future from a perspective of mainstream Biblical scholarship. (Hint: the Bible does not give a roadmap for predicting the end of the world!) (Second hint: the Bible does not predict an end to the world!)
For those who wish to supplement their personal study (not required), the accompanying book is available. A copy or two will be available on Sunday, with three more on order, and you can order your own (new or used) on amazon or through a bookseller of your choice.