This is the first year in which our family has had three separate school schedules to try to coordinate. It’s not easy; there’s not a lot of overlap in breaks or inservice days, but one is happening this coming Monday: Labor Day.
Maybe we should disappear for the day. I bet we wouldn’t be the only ones to skip town. Maybe you will, too. Or maybe you’ll have friends over and blacken some chunks of meat.
Whatever you do, keep in mind why we celebrate the holiday. It’s important. Linda Stinson, who previously served as the U.S. Department of Labor’s historian, describes the first celebration, on September 5, 1882, this way:
On May 14, 1882, a proposal was made at the Central Labor Union meeting that all workers should join together for a “monster labor festival” in early September. A committee of five people was appointed to find a park for the celebration. They chose Wendel’s Elm Park at 92nd Street and 9th Avenue, the largest park in New York City at that time; the date was set for Tuesday, September 5. By June, they had sold 20,000 tickets with the proceeds going to each local union selling them. In August, the Central Labor Union passed a resolution “that the 5th of September be proclaimed a general holiday for the workingmen in this city.”
At first they were afraid that the celebration was going to be a failure. Many of the workers in the parade had to lose a day’s pay in order to participate. When the parade began only a handful of workers were in it, while hundreds of people stood on the sidewalk jeering at them. But then slowly they came – 200 workers and a band from the Jewelers’ Union showed up and joined the parade. Then came a group of bricklayers with another band. By the time they reached the park, it was estimated that there were 10,000 marchers in the parade in support of workers.
The park was decorated with flags of many nations. Everyone picnicked, drank beer and listened to speeches from the union leadership. In the evening, even more people came to the park to watch fireworks and dance. The newspapers of the day declared it a huge success and “a day of the people.”
Imagine being a part of that handful of people being cajoled by hundreds surrounding you on sidewalks. Imagine being one of few people bold enough to stand up for what you believe in, always risking being undermined and demeaned at work, risking an entire day’s pay, multiple meals for your family, to stand up and march for your rights and your dignity. How disheartening must it have been to gather as so few?
But the parade grew. The movement grew. Organization changed the face of labor. Work became safer, more healthy, more secure.
Because a few voices stood together for what they believed in.
That’s all it takes: just a few voices. Maybe just one.
So as you munch on your burgers and bratwurst this weekend, take a moment to reflect on what your voice is doing. Take a moment to ponder what you stand for, what you march for. Take a moment to let Christ speak to you, whether you find yourself in the place of the occupying empire, the tyrannical Temple hierarchy, the befuddled disciples, the oppressed poor, or the hopeful Gentiles.
On this Labor Day, 135 years after that first march in New York City, God is still speaking justice and righteousness to us here where we are. That’s good news for us, if we’ll just listen.
Last Sunday . . . Meeting and Greeting
Our Missions Director, Julie, reminds us:
It is time to bring in snacks
to take to Hospice House.
Jesus, the very thought of thee
with sweetness fills the breast;
but sweeter far thy face to see,
and in thy presence rest.
O hope of every contrite heart,
O joy of all the meek,
to those who fall, how kind thou art!
How good to those who seek!
~Attr. to Bernard of Clairvaux, 12th cent.;
trans. by Edward Caswall, 1849
A Time for Young Disciples and Young at Heart
“Allow the children to come to me,”
Jesus said. “Don’t forbid them,
because the kingdom of heaven
belongs to people like these children.” CEB
Carol Taylor and Julie Blanton play a lovely dulcimer duet,
Brethren, We Have Met to Worship to the tune, Holy Manna
Message from God’s Word:
Christ Gives Us Authority
Matthew 16: 13-20
Go out as God’s people,
willing to do God’s work in the world.
Go out as Christ’s disciples,
ready to serve wherever we have the chance.
Go out as the Spirit’s hopes,
eager to proclaim peace to all.
~c. 2014 Thom M. Shuman
Our “Feed the Hungry” offering this week is for Bristol Faith in Action.
BFIA is a cooperative outreach ministry of the churches of Bristol and the local community formed to serve any persons whose circumstances leave them with significant physical, social, emotional or spiritual needs.
SPR is looking for a music director and you can help!
Please let us know of anyone who might be interested in leading our
music program and/or providing piano and organ music.
The job description includes the following:
Ability to work with pastor and volunteers
Oversee children’s music at certain times of the year
Availability for additional services: weddings, funerals, and liturgical occasions
Because of our very limited budget, we are requesting a resume’
and salary requirement for either position or combined positions.
Joshua fought the battle of Jericho, Jericho, Jericho, Joshua fought the battle of Jericho, And the walls came tumbling down!
In children’s church, Mr. Mike led us in the fall of Jericho.
Kelly Logan graciously brought her trumpet,
and the chairs came a tumbling down!
What a fun lesson to teach and to experience!
Was it Joshua or God and his mighty works that brought it down?
How was Rahab and her family saved?
OOPS! Some of the earlier information provided in the Church Newsletter and Bulletin about Kroger’s Community Rewards
Program was incorrect. Please note changes:
THEENROLLMENT PERIOD BEGINS IN SEPTEMBER.
Participants may enroll at any time within the current year.
Purchases will apply from point of entry.
Shoppers who participated in the program last year
must re-enroll to continue participation.
To Enroll: Go to www.kroger.com. If you already have created an account, sign in; if not, you must create one. Once signed in, look for the “person” figure and down arrow on the far right of your screen. Click the down arrow. Choose My Account. Scroll to the bottom of the page to Community Rewards and enroll. Search for First United Methodist Church, and select the one in Bristol. Or, search by our organization number, which is 85975.
BRMC Needs Volunteers
Do you have just 4 hours per week that you could donate to help your community? If so, Bristol Regional Medical Center is in need of volunteers.They have many types of volunteer positions available.
If you can help, call Becky Blevins, BRMC Volunteer Services Department, 423.844.2831.
You will be a blessing!
Reading Buddies Orientation
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Coming Soon to the Church You Love . . .
All Church Workday Saturday, September 9 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
To: The Ladies of First United Methodist Church
From: The United Methodist Women
You are invited to a Fall Luncheon
Friday, October 14, 2017
First United Methodist Church, Tankersley Hall
If you are not yet familiar with who we are, the United Methodist Women (UMW) plan and implement much of the mission work of First United Methodist Church.
As UMW, we desire to establish a place where women of the church can come together to enjoy one another and lift up our work for the good of God. (For where two or three gather as my followers, I am there among them. Matthew 18:20 NLT) Our purpose is to unite women of our church into a community of supporters, encouragers and friends.
We are excited that Beth Green, a Christian singer, comedian and inspirational speaker will be our special guest at the October 14 luncheon!
Come — laugh with us — be inspired with us — share lots of good food with us. —
Together we can relax and enjoy fellowship with each other on this day planned just for us!
An opportunity to contribute to our Haiti Children’s Mission will be available.
For each publication, information is needed by noon on Wednesday.
Like what you see in your church newsletter?
PASS IT ON?
to a friend, neighbor or co-worker!
Share some good news today!
Calendar & Events Schedule
Week of August 31 – September 6
Thurs, Aug. 24: 6:00pm-Yoga with Jean-The Upper Room
Fri, Sept. 1: 5:30pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
6:30pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
Sat, Sept. 2: 8:00pm-NA
Sun, Sept. 3: 9:30am-Sunday School Hour
9:30am-The River Service, TH
10:00am-Common Ground Service, Chapel
11:00am-Traditional Worship, Sanctuary
(childcare is provided from 9:30am to 12:00pm; children may be picked up at any time)
Mon, Sept. 4: 6:00pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
1:00pm-Food Pantry Volunteers-CANCELLED
7:00pm-Hispanic Congregation PVUMC
Tues, Sept. 5: 8:00am-Men’s Prayer Group-TH
Wed, Sept. 6:6:30pm-Youth Event
To make changes or additions to the calendar
contact Alan Gorrell 423-652-7377 orSandy Gorrell423-652-1987.