What’s Going On
New England Justice for Our Neighbors (NEJFON) is a United Methodist ministry, that provides high-quality, accessible, free immigration legal services to low-income immigrants and promotes justice within the U.S. system of immigration law, policy, and social practice.
Crawford has provided financial and volunteer support to NEJFON since 2015 and we held our first annual Chili Cookoff in 2016. In place of our cookoff this year, we are conducting a fund-raising campaign that culminates on June 20, which is World Refugee Day.
To contribute in support of the work at JFON’s four active clinics in New England: Springfield, Worcester, Lowell, and Lawrence, you can text CrawfordJFON to 44-321 or mail a check to the church, made out to Crawford Memorial UMC and note JFON in the memo line.
This week we are pleased to welcome Dr. Jed Lindholm to the Crawford pulpit to offer his reflections on Earth Day and how our faith might shape our actions as we face the climate crisis. This was one of the topics you suggested for our series and is one of Dr. Lindholm’s passions. He will join us not only for Sunday morning under the tent, but also for the Zoom sermon talkback at 7:00 p.m. Pastor Anne will be at worship Sunday morning and the host of the sermon talkback in the evening.
More about Dr. Jed Lindholm
Dr. Lindholm is married to Mary, is a father of four, and lives in Sterling, MA. His Christian worship tradition is as a Lutheran in the ELCA, and he has been brought into a daily practice of devotional reflection through the Upper Room Disciplines. He began collaboration in faith competency with Pastor Anne through going the “extra mile” in all three volumes of her Exploring the Bible: The Dickinson Series Bible studies. His professional career is in human resources as a compensation consultant. He teaches leadership, teaming, and organizational dynamics at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.
The Hand Bell Choir has begun practicing, and we’re looking for more members. No special skills required, just a willing heart! We meet at 6:45 p.m. on Thursdays, and rehearse for approximately 45 minutes each week. Please contact Logan Henke for more information and safety guidelines.
Our current Adult Study will introduce a new book, and be held on a new day and time. Starting Friday, April 9, at 6:00 p.m., Herby Duverne will lead us through Counterclockwise: Mindful Health and the Power of Possibility.
Overview, schedule and Zoom link on our Adult Study page.
Our new adult study begins next week on February 21st. Kim Burke will lead us in a discussion of the book, Lent in Plain Sight: A Devotion Through Ten Objects, by Jill Duffield. The author hopes that this book “opens our eyes and ears to the certain providence and power of God, allowing us to lower our anxiety about the future, lessen our burdens about the past, and free us to follow Jesus in faith right here and now.” Details on our Adult Study page.
On Sunday, January 17, Crawford had a special online service to recognize the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday and the way that intersects with the tension-filled days that are filling the nation right now. At this time of year, it is common at school assemblies and public events to hear Dr. King’s “I have a dream” speech read aloud, often from memory. However, Dr. King’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail seems a more fitting tribute this year. You can watch the service here.
In 2021 we will host our first-ever Crawford Online Auction! The funds raised will go directly to supporting the infrastructure that allows us to continue to be the heart and hands of Christ in our community and beyond. We plan to hold our auction in two parts: Online silent auction, April 7, 8, and 9 and Online “live” auction, April 10. Mark your calendars now!
A new adult class is starting on January 10th. We will be reading Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson.
Details on our Adult Programs page.
Join us online this Sunday, January 10th, when we will hear from guest preacher, Rev. John DeNardo. John, an ordained American Baptist Minister who serves as pastor at the First Baptist Church of Winchester. His sermon is entitled “A Little Peace and Quiet,” and is based on the scripture leading up to Jesus’ feeding the five thousand:
The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to him all they had done and taught. Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”
So they went away by themselves in a boat to a solitary place. But many who saw them leaving recognized them and ran on foot from all the towns and got there ahead of them. When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things.
Rev. DeNardo is a seminary graduate from Regent University with an M.A. in Practical Theology as well as a B.A. in Biblical Studies from Gordon College. As a Minister he focuses on providing leadership in the areas of spiritual and community growth. John and his wife Lynda currently live in Newburyport, Massachusetts where they have raised their two daughters.
A number of factors have conspired together to make it unwise for us to gather in person this coming Sunday, so we are moving to a single service at 10:00 am on Sunday morning on Zoom.
We will still be able to do most of what we had planned to do at the outdoor service in an adapted form. There is no pre-recorded service, so the whole service will be “live” in conversation and fellowship with each other. Logan Henke, our new music director will be with us to provide musical offerings; everyone will still receive a “Star Word” for the coming year; and we’ll still offer to God the tatters of 2020.