We're exhausted but done with this year's Worship Design Retreat. It's energizing to have the worship folks together to pray, imagine, discern together in the same room. (We so appreciate our part-time staff who stayed long hours this week to participate and our laity who took off work and rearranged schedules to be a part morning till late night). We review the lectionary Bible texts for the coming year, both RCL and Narrative lectionary, considered the Biblical themes and the context nationally and where MSUMC finds ourselves. We heard from noted theologians like Tex Sample and Emile Townes, pastors, musicians and worship artists. This year had a decidedly jazzy feel with popular Kansas City jazz greats.
It's not easy moving from the rhythms of Advent to Lent in the space of a day and then waking up the next day to plan for Holy Week, Easter and Pentecost but it's vital for lots of reasons. The most important of which is it's the way we can collaboratively create sensory-rich meaningful and memorable worship that travel along on the spiritual journey of the congregation and who we've decided to be together rather than functioning week-to-week following the spiritual journey of the pastor. It allows more creativity, more advance planning, better budgeting, and it's actually time efficient. It takes less time with more formative results when you batch the creative process. So while the days are long and the work is frantically fast-paced, when we stepped back and looked at what we had planned . . . we got excited (and we needed sleep).
The year ahead looks creative and deep, challenging and assuring, fun and sacred. We have plans for dramas, new banners, spiritual rituals, new music and creating our own videos. That's where all you come in. We hope you'll be a part of making all this sensory-rich worship happen.
Sept 9 - Church Members Family & Friends Ham & Bean Supper - This will be a trial run of our buffet format and we encourage everyone to attend and help us make improvements. Tickets will be sold at the door.
Oct 7 - Our first Ham & Bean Supper open to the public. We're so excited to resume this ministry in our community and look forward to seeing both new and familiar faces! Tickets will be sold at the door.
Ham & Bean suppers will resume full schedule on the first Saturday of each month after we launch the first one on October 7th!
This Sunday, August 20, is our third Sunday Food Pantry at the Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter. If you are able to help, please arrive at 1:30. Please let Phyllis Appler know if you can be there on the 20th.
If you can't help in person, please make sure that we have what we need for a successful distribution day— Canned tuna or chicken Canned cereal Canned fruit Boxes of Mac and cheese Dried beans Soup Thank you!
We can also shop with funds that you donate to the Food Pantry account. The Soup Kitchen Food Pantry has received a grant to purchase fresh produce from NH farms. That should begin this week, and Main Street is in charge of finding the food at the farms! And a delivery of USDA food this week will help tremendously!
If you know someone who can use the food provided by the Sunday afternoon pantry, please encourage them to take advantage of this time! Food Pantry will be open from 2 to 4 Sunday afternoon.
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.