Bulletin 14-May-2017

Sunday, May 14, 2017 – Saturday, May 20, 2017
The Fifth Sunday of Easter
8:30 & 10:00: Worship
10:00: Sunday school & childcare (infants-age 2)
Rev. Dr. Andrew W. Armstrong
“What’s Troubling You?”
Acts 7: 55-60   John 14: 1-14
Music: Sarah Heimberg, trumpet,
Chapel Chimers, Joyful Noise

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NOTES FROM THE CHANCEL

This morning in worship we welcome two of our children’s choirs to offer their talents through music. Children participating in worship is integral to the life of any church community, and here is both kudos and thanks to our choir directors who keep our children and youth musically active in our weekly praise to God!

With memories of themes surrounding last week’s Shepherd Sunday, the 23rd Psalm (and last week’s very special concert program) our Prelude this morning is by Herbert Norman Howells. Howells is a British composer whose writing spans the impressive period of 1911-1977. He obtained the Associate and Fellowship titles of the Royal College of Organists in 1912 and 1916 respectively. Although never holding a substantial cathedral organist’s position, he succeeded Gustav Holst as musical director at St. Paul’s Girls School and taught from 1920 to 1972 at the Royal College of Music. Though composing some wonderfully spiritual church music, Howells was reputedly an agnostic, never having come to terms with the loss of his young son, Michael. (NB: The requiem-like choral work dedicated to his son, Hymnus Paradisi is an absolute masterpiece which should be in every audiophile’s collection. And some of the most moving choral writing one can imagine.)

John Henderson’s tremendous volume, A Directory of Composers for Organ, writes that Howells’ music is that of an …English mystic. The mood is often somber or melancholy, the harmonies luscious, the inner rhythms complex and the difficulty of effective registration constant, but this music is from the soul… The depiction of walking through the valley: through the pulsating repetition of one note, opens the work under a shroud of darkness. A single melodic call about a minute into the work is our cry of despair unto the Lord. As the organ begins to get louder, the presence of the Lord is with us, comforting and reassuring until our fear of evil is no more, and this triumph resounds in the full sound of the organ. As in many of Howells works which start and end softly, to have the middle section nearly raise the roof, the rod and staff of comfort are depicted in the elation of our fears being subsided turning into the succor of trusting in God. Still, we continue to walk and search, as the opening pulse of the piece returns, until at the end, we have found our peace, and the Lord.

The haunting Rachmaninoff “Vocalise” was originally scored for Piano and Voice. This reading for trumpet and piano, will be just as effective to offer a time of reflection, in this song without words. – In light of First Schola (Gr. 7-12 treble choir) needing some new recruits to stay active, one of its newest members, Sarah Heimberg, offered to step in, to fill Schola’s worship slot this morning. Thank you, Sarah!

Other themes surrounding the honoring of Mother’s Day allow our children’s choirs a chance to musically say “thank you” to Mom during worship, while our hymnody this morning brings the congregation together, in rousing hymns of praise during corporate worship.

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CHRISTIAN EDUCATION CORNER 

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Today is the fifth Sunday of Easter and the liturgical color is white.

NURSERY CARE – The church nursery opens at 9:45 AM to care for children under the age of 3 during the 10 AM worship service. Nursery coordinators are on hand to greet parents and explain the procedure for checking in and picking up your child.

Today in the Sunday school

  • 3/4 yr. olds-Kindergarten will hear about the Fruits of the Spirit. Galatians 5: 22-23
  • 1st and 2nd grade will hear about the Gifts of the Spirit. Acts 2:1-47
  • 3rd-5th grade will hear the story of the Loaves and Fishes. Matthew 14:13-21
  • MAD will meet in room 10 following the Children’s Story to continue preparing for Children’s Day on June 11. 

CONFIRMATION DAY, SUNDAY, May 21

8:30 AM: Breakfast for confirmands and mentors in dining room
9:15 AM: Pictures taken outside, weather permitting
10:00 AM: The Rite of Confirmation in the Sanctuary
11:30 AM: Reception Line and refreshments in Fellowship Hall

Children’s Day is Sunday, June 11, when the children of First Church lead worship in the sanctuary at 10:00 AM.  Steve Blunt will direct the music and the action for this year’s Children’s Day Worship Celebration. Children in the 3-year old classes through the MAD are busy learning their songs and preparing the program for the morning service. Rehearsals are held during Sunday school time throughout May and into June, and attendance is very important. 

Vacation Bible School to be held the week of July 10-14. VBS is for children age 4-grade 6. Volunteers are needed to help with crafts, childcare, and classroom activities.  Contact Diane Matthes, [email protected] or 882-4861, for more information.  Register at the CE Corner in Fellowship Hall. Cost is $5.00 per child with a maximum of $10 per family. 

Volunteers Needed for Summer Program – The end of each Sunday school year marks the beginning of Summer Activity Time for First Church children in grades 1-6. Each Sunday children are invited to join their parents in the sanctuary for worship at 9 AM, leaving after the Children’s story and going to the dining room. Childcare is available for infants-age 5 throughout the 9 AM worship service.

Volunteers are needed to make this program a valuable experience for the children of First Church. If you can lead or help with an activity or provide childcare any Sunday, June 18 through August 27, please sign up at the CE Corner in Fellowship Hall or call the church office.  You may sign up to help on one Sunday or as many as you like.

This service can only be offered if volunteers come forward. Please consider sharing an hour of your time with the wonderful children of the church. 

Horton Center is now accepting reservations for its 2017 summer programs for adults and youth. Information and registration can be found online at www.hortoncenter.org. Scholarships are available for First Church campers. Contact the CE office for more information.

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Church Happenings and Outreach – New/Current

Anne-Marie House Residents Receive Gifts – The Women’s Association assembled and delivered gift bags this week for each of the 11 families at the Anne-Marie House. Each bag contains a $50 gift card for a local department store and some chocolate candies.  While this is Mother’s Day weekend, it’s being called a “spring gift event”, as there are several dads living there with their children as well as moms and the dads will be given the gift too.

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Church World Service (CWS) Hygiene Kits are due TODAY. Please return them to the Outreach booth. Thank you for your support.

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Mission Nicaragua – Help support Outreach360 in Nicaragua by “Buying a Brick”. The Mission Trip Task Force is raising funds to support the building of a new learning center in Nicaragua.  Each paper brick you buy will represent building blocks used to construct this new building.  We will build our own paper learning center at church to represent the construction.  For $5.00 each, you can “Buy a Brick” for yourself or as a gift to be made in honor or in memory of someone special, someone who shares your passion for mission in our world. Bricks may be purchased at the CE Corner following worship services.

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Annual Rummage Sale
Friday, June 2, 9:00 AM–6:00 PM
Saturday, June 3, 9:00 AM–Noon

Starting May 15 donations of spring and summer clothing, clean and in good repair, shoes and accessories, linens and small household items, trash and treasure items (no larger than a microwave) may be left at the courtyard entrance.

Help is needed for sorting and set-up on Tuesday, May 30 and Wednesday, May 31. Help will also be needed with sales and break-down on the days of the sale.  All work is done in shifts so any amount of time you can spare is greatly appreciated.  Contact Leslie Van Wagner, 888-8252 or stop by the Outreach booth to sign up.

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First Church Ornaments are being sold by the Mission Trip Planning Team. They make great Confirmation and Graduation gifts, Christmas ornaments, gifts for all occasions. The cost is $25.00, and includes the ornament and stand. This fundraiser will benefit future mission trip opportunities. Stop by the CE Corner after the worship services to purchase an ornament.

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Is there a graduate in your family this year?  Please send their information to Sue at [email protected] by May 15, so they can be acknowledged in the June newsletter.  Thank you.

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Calling all College Students and Recent Grads!  If you are a college student or a recent grad from high school or college, then you’re welcome to join Rev. Andy for Dinner Church.  We’ll meet at 6:00 PM on June 7th and prepare our meal together: spaghetti and meat sauce, salad, garlic toast followed by ice cream sundaes.  We’ll talk through a few psalms then plan a summer mission project together.  Feel free to invite friends to join you.  Please e-mail Rev. Andy if you plan to attend at [email protected]

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Rev. Andy’s Drop-in Hours at the Riverwalk Café will conclude for the season on Wednesday, May 17. Stop by this Wednesday,1:30-3:30 PM, for a chat!

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MUSIC IN WORSHIP NEXT SUNDAY
May 21, 2017
6th Sunday of Easter/ Confirmation
8:30 & 10:00   Choral Union 

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The Prayer Shawl Ministry is holding a meeting and knitting group on Thursday, May 18, from 10-11:30 AM in Room 10.  Everyone is invited to work on prayer shawls, or any other knitting or crocheting you would like to bring.  The group will continue to meet on the third Thursday of the month. 

On June 4, there will be a table set up in Fellowship Hall. Stop by after services and during coffee hour to learn about this important ministry, ask questions, and pick up some yarn.  We will have yarn, needles, samples, and directions for both knitting and crocheting.

Co-coordinators are Karen Bianchi, Laurel Lang, and Amanda Steere. For more information, please contact Karen at [email protected] or 603-897-0788.

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Have questions concerning Medicare, Medicaid, or veteran’s benefits? Call Darrell Spencer, 603-888-2335. All information will remain confidential.

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Save the Date! The all-church retreat at Horton Center will be held the weekend of August 25-27, 2017. Stay tuned for more information.

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Faith Promise at Anne-Marie House – The next First Church volunteer week is June 11, so volunteers please mark your calendars. And if you would like to learn more about volunteering at the family Promise Program at the Anne-Marie House, please contact Katharine Steer, 889-1139 or [email protected], or Beth Raymond, 595-0053 or [email protected]

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Help the church office keep the records current! Are you traveling for an extended period of time? Having your mail stopped? Have you moved? Are you planning to move? Please contact Sue in the church office. Mail from the church is sent “return requested”. If you have your mail held or forwarded to a vacation address, it will be returned to us with postage due. Address changes are also returned. Please help us avoid paying the cost of the return. Thank you.

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The Thrift Shop will be closing for the season on May 25.  Donations are still being accepted. Women’s and children’s SPRING AND SUMMER clothing, clean and in good repair, and accessories, costume jewelry, and knickknacks may be left in the marked bin in the lobby at the courtyard entrance between 10:00 AM and 3:30 PM, Monday through Friday, or on Sunday.  Please take winter items to the Salvation Army.  Contact the church office with any questions. 

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Church Happenings and Outreach – Ongoing

The Bible, Friends, and Coffee Bible Study meets every Monday, 9:30-11:00 AM in room 15, in the Walker Building through May 22. The discussion group is facilitated by Rev. Jeff and Rev. Andy.  No sign-up is required.  If you have a Bible, bring it; if not, one will be supplied for you.

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Pulpit Flowers – If you would like to provide flowers for the pulpit, sign up on the chart in Fellowship Hall or contact the church office. Flower arrangements can be purchased from your favorite florist or can be created from flowers you’ve purchased or grown.

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The Giving Card offers an option for those folks who give electronically or monthly to symbolically participate in the offering. Cards can be found in the pews and in the basket at the back of the sanctuary.  Simply place it in the offering plate.

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Epilepsy Support Group meets on the 4th Tuesday of the month in room 15 at 6:00 PM. If you are or someone you know is affected by epilepsy, you are invited to attend the meetings.  RSVP to Susan Linn at [email protected].

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The Caregiver’s Support Group meets on the second Thursday of the month at 2:00 PM in the Family Room next to the Shaw Chapel. Contact the church office or Rev. Andy with any questions.

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The Craft Group meets on the third Wednesday of the month 6:30 – 8:00 PM in the dining room. The next session will be held on May 17. We welcome anyone who is interested in crafting for the November 3 – 5, 2017 Christmas Fair.

The fair is a ministry of fellowship and service. Fair proceeds help those in need through our ministers’ Pastoral Aid Fund. We would love to add new talent and items this year.  If you have any questions or ideas, please contact Jocelyn Henning at 880-1839.

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First Church directory – If you have yet to submit a picture of you/your family for the church directory, you can do so at [email protected] If you have any questions, please call Lee Hauenstein at 888-5829 or Sue Haas at 889-1326. Don’t be left out of the directory. An information sheet can be found at the In-Reach table. 

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First Church Cyclists – The primary objective of this group is to get together for some fun, fresh air, fellowship and most importantly, ice cream. Invite anyone, regardless of age or ability to join us. The next ride will be on May 21 at the Minuteman Bikeway in Bedford, MA.

A schedule can be found on the First Church website. Call or text Ray Baldwin at 603-913-3974 or email at [email protected] with any questions.

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The Men’s Breakfast Group meets every Thursday morning at 7:30 AM at the Pine Street Eatery, 136 Pine St., Nashua. For more information, contact Dick Zoerb, 886-8665.

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The Men’s Munchers meet on the first Tuesday of the month at noon for lunch and fellowship. All men of the church and their guests are welcome.  Contact Dick Zoerb, [email protected], or 886-8665, for more information.

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The Ladies Lunch Bunch meets on the second Wednesday of the month at 12:30 PM. All First Church women- members and friends- are welcome to attend.  Contact Arlene Richmond, [email protected] or 943-7970, for more information.

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First Church serves dinner at the Nashua Soup Kitchen on the third Tuesday and fourth Friday of the month from 4:00-6:00 PM.  New volunteers are always welcome to participate in this simple, but important outreach ministry.  To serve on a Tuesday please contact Patricia Cooper, [email protected] or 566-1826.  If you are interested in helping on a Friday, please call Cindy Staradub, 888-9561.

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End 68 Hours of Hunger provides bags of food weekly to local elementary school children who would otherwise not have food over the weekend. The following items are needed: nutritional cereal, canned soup/pasta, 18oz. plastic peanut butter, 20 oz. plastic jelly, canned tuna/chicken, small cans of fruit, boxes of macaroni and cheese, ramen noodles (no cups), nutrition bars.  Collection boxes are set up in Fellowship Hall.

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Community Happenings 

A Simple E-Vote Can Change a Life – The Front Door Agency has been nominated for the Provident Bank “Our Community, Your E-Vote” campaign again this year. It’s an opportunity for the Agency to share with other organizations in a $50,000 donation from the Provident Community Foundation — with the amount determined by total votes received. Last year, with your support the Front Door Agency received close to $4,500. Please take two minutes to vote online for The Front Door before May 31. It costs nothing and can have a big impact on people in need in our community. You will be asked to enter your name and email address – but the Provident will not retain or use your email. Vote now at www.tinyurl.com/FrontDoorVote

Be sure to scroll down to “T’ for The Front Door. Thank you!

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Southern New Hampshire Bubble Ball Tournament
May 20th 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Athletic Fields at Presentation of Mary in Hudson
Go to http://www.annemariehouse.org/events/bubble-ball for more information.
Proceeds benefit the Family Promise of Greater Nashua at the Anne-Marie House.

 


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