December 12, 2019
Solar Project Year-End Giving

Greetings to all in the Open Door Churches of Salem,
I have recently had the pleasure of visiting the worship services for four of the five churches participating in the solar panel project. (Morningside has already done an initial fund raising drive for both a new roof and the solar project.) My purpose was to alert all in attendance that we’ve been awarded all the energy grants we applied for and will be ordering the solar panels soon!
During the month of January, we will try to answer all of your questions about solar energy and will be asking everyone to give boldly and generously to help raise the $100,000 balance needed to complete this fabulous project!
Some of you may be involved in year-end tax planning right now. If you are, please consider a gift to the
Solar Project. You may give through your church noting “Solar Project” on the check or you can mail a check directly to Judy Allen at First United Methodist Church, 600 State St, Salem, OR 97301. However you send it, please mark your check clearly for the Solar Project.
If you are a young person aged 70.5 or above and have an IRA requiring an annual distribution, an excellent way to make gifts to the Solar Project (and/or other charitable gifts) is through a “required distribution” from your IRA. Making gifts this way may reduce your taxable income. To qualify, you must meet the following requirements:
a. Have an IRA requiring a distribution (not a Roth IRA).
b. Be giving less than $100,000 (not a problem for most of us!)
c. The gift(s) must come directly from your IRA.
If you meet these requirements, please talk with your tax advisor or your IRA trustee to make sure this method of giving would reduce your taxes and that the process is done correctly. Again, please mark gifts to your church specifically for the Solar Project.
If you have questions, please contact me at I will try to answer your questions or will put you in contact with someone who can.
Have a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year! Our committee members will be in touch in January with lots more information about the Solar Project. Thank you in advance for helping us improve God’s world and our churches.
Chuck Hudkins for the Solar Committee
Advent Events 2019
Advent Class: “Light of the World”
Tuesdays @ 1:30 (11/26, 12/3, 10 and 17) or Sundays @ 9:30 (12/1, 8, 15 and 22)
Taught by Rev. Wendy Woodworth at Morningside, we will trace the Christmas narrative through stories of Zechariah and Elizabeth, Mary, the journey to Bethlehem and the visit from the Magi using the book Light of the World: A Guide to Advent by Amy-Jill Levine. You can purchase a book through Amazon or Cokesbury. The class will include a 10 minute video along with scripture and discussion. Reading the book is not a necessity.

Blue Christmas
December 13th (Friday) - 7 p.m.
If you’re struggling with the upcoming holidays for any reason, whether you’re experiencing loss, hurting, or just not feeling the joy of the season, Stephen Ministers are hosting a “Blue Christmas” at Salem First. We’ll light candles, share our pictures and pray together. Stephen Ministers will be available for support and light refreshments will be provided. Come join us.

Young Adult Christmas Party
December 18th (Wednesday) - 7 p.m.
Young Adults are invited to get together for our annual Christmas gathering at Keizer Clear Lake. We’ll share a time of festive fellowship with crafts, games, and treats. All in the young adult community are welcome for this festive fun! For questions please contact Pastor Alyssa.

John Nilsen in Concert
December 21st (Saturday) - 2 p.m.
John Nilsen will be in concert at Keizer Clear Lake. A pianist, guitarist, vocalist and songwriter, he is one of the Pacific Northwest’s most successful performance & recording artists.

Children’s Christmas Pageant
December 22nd (Sunday) - 11a.m.-12 p.m.
The children will bring the Christmas message during a combined service at Salem First which will also include carols and singing in our historic sanctuary.
wreath and candle
Christmas Eve Services: “Shepherds & Angels”
Iglesia Metodista Unida Las Naciones
  • TBA   Christmas Eve Service

Keizer Clear Lake
  • 7 p.m.   Christmas Eve Service

  • 5 p.m.   Family Worship Service: Interactive kid-friendly Christmas Eve service for the whole family.
  • 7 p.m.   Candlelight service with praise band, organ and chancel choir

Salem First: (All services in sanctuary except 9 p.m. in MICAH.)
  • 7 p.m.   Candlelight & beautiful music in the historic sanctuary
  • 9 p.m.   Candlelight & contemporary praise in MICAH Worship Center
  • 11 p.m.   Candlelight & communion in the historic sanctuary
  • 5 p.m. Candlelight and Carols
Frozen 2 Movie and Pizza Party!
Come join us for a Frozen 2 movie and pizza party!
December 15th at 3:45 p.m.
Regal Santiam Cinema

See the movie with FUMC’s Dave Metzger who arranged and co-produced the songs and orchestrated songs and part of the score. We would love to see you - everyone is invited!  Families, individuals, snowmen and women - It will be super-fun!

Meet at the theater for the 3:45 p.m. showing (Regal Santiam Cinema - 365 Lancaster Dr SE, Salem, OR 97317) to watch the movie together (No Host) on December 15th in the late afternoon at 3:45 p.m. Afterwards, come to Taplin Hall in the Micah Building and join us for pizza, drinks, and cake.

RSVP is requested (but not required) to Laura Metzger,, so we know how much pizza to order! 

Just let Laura know if you have any questions.

Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving!
Advent Class
Advent Study
Taught by Wendy Woodworth, Light of the World: A Guide to Advent by Amy-Jill Levine, is a new Advent class this fall.

Together we will trace the Christmas narrative through stories of Zechariah and Elizabeth, Mary, the journey to Bethlehem, and the visit from the Magi.

You can purchase a book through Amazon or Cokesbury. The class will include a 10 minute video along with scripture and discussion. Reading the book is not a necessity. 

What: 4 Week Study for Open Door Churches                                     
Where: Morningside UMC
When: Tuesday's at 1:30; November 26, December 3, 10, and 17 OR         
Sunday’s at 9:30; December 1, 8, 15, 22.
New LGBTQ+ Fellowship Group

There is now a new LGBTQ+ Fellowship!

During our initial meeting, we discussed ways to help support each other and how we'd like to build a fellowship as a faith community.

Our next meeting is on December 18th at 7 p.m..

If you are interested in joining, contact Pastor Wendy through Morningside's church office.
Face to Face is on Break for the Winter

Face to Face is now on winter break. We will take a break during the rest of fall and winter and then begin meeting again in the spring.

If you haven't had a chance to join us yet, keep an eye out for when we start up again next year!
Volunteers Requested for Las Naciones UMC Christmas Event
Las Naciones UMC is in need of volunteers and donations for their special Christmas event on Friday, December 20, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., Las Naciones UMC, 820 Jefferson Street, Salem.

Las Naciones UMC is looking for volunteers and donations for their community Christmas meal and program. Volunteers are needed from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. on to help serve and clean up.

Donations of toys, and winter caps, gloves, or clothing are also needed.

If you can help please contact Rev. Arturo Fernandez at 503-371-0821.
Saturday of Service - January 18th
Come serve our community with friends on January 18th from 12-3 PM!

Please join us for our next Saturday of Service on Saturday, January 18th, from 12-3 pm. Meet at the church for a light lunch and then we will divide into groups to serve our community for a couple of hours of fun and service!

Projects include:
  • helping assemble food for backpacks for schoolchildren
  • card making at the church
  • helping at Family Building Blocks
  • sorting food at the Marion Polk Food Share

Please watch for sign ups to begin after Christmas.

Money is also needed to pay for food to fill the backpacks-we feed approximately 70 children with a weekend’s worth of food every 3 months. Just designate a gift to Backpack Buddies through the office at Salem First.

THANK YOU for all that you do to help serve our community neighbors!"
Wanted: Director of Family and Program Ministry
Morningside United Methodist Church
Open Door Churches of Salem-Keizer

Average 20 hours per week, annual salary of $15,000-17,000. Paid Vacation per personnel policy. Supervisor will be the lead pastor at Morningside UMC, Salem, Oregon.

Direct and assist in the planning and carrying out of specified program ministries, involve volunteers at all levels of program ministries, communicate and market program plans and build participation within the local church(s) and community.

Our Program Ministry Includes:
  • Interactive Fellowship/Education/Worship Experiences       
  • Youth Ministry with Open Door Churches
  • Morningside Education Team                       
  • Family Enrichment Program: Parenting Classes and Children’s Activities               
  • VBS with Open Door Churches.
  • Parent’s Night Out

Application Process
  • Please send letter of interest and resume to
  • Position is open until filled. 
  • Full Job Description available upon request.
Youth Group
December is a busy month with lots of fun events for our youth group. Below are some of the highlights
  • December 15 - Youth Group Christmas Party 12:30-2
  • December 22 - Keizer Festival of Lights Volunteering 6-8 p.m.
  • February 15-17 - Winter Retreat @ Suttle Lake: Our Open Door Youth Group will once again have the opportunity to participate in the conference winter retreat at Suttle Lake. This is always one of the highlights of our program year. Join us for fun, games, inter tubing (if we have snow), and a chance to meet youth from other churches and grow in our faith. Cost is $50 per person. If you would like to sign up let Jeff know by December 15th and make your check payable to "Open Door Youth"
  • February 22 - Youth Auction  
Young Adults 
The Open Door Church Young Adult Group has been sharing in conversations about the future of The UMC in response to the Bishops announcement of Safe Harbor and the Western Jurisdictions All Belong statement and legislation.Together we have shared our thoughts on what the future of The UMC may look like along with our hopes and fears.

The Open Door Young Adults meet weekly on Wednesday evenings. Please contact Pastor Alyssa ( or see our social media pages for times and places. Thank you for your continued support of the Open Door Church Young Adults.

Young Adult Christmas Party
December 18th @ 7 p.m.

Young Adults are invited to get together for our annual Christmas gathering at Keizer Clear Lake. We’ll share a time of festive fellowship with crafts, games, and treats. All in the young adult community are welcome for this festive fun! For questions please contact Pastor Alyssa.

Open Door Churches: Board Meeting Notes
The Board Meeting and Charge Conference will be at Morningside UMC on Monday, December 16, 2019 at 6:00 pm.

The Open Door Churches Board (ODC) meeting was held at Trinity UMC on Monday November 25, 2019. District Superintendent Tim Overton-Harris also attended.

  • Mark Bateman gave an update on the solar panel project. January has been declared "Solar Month". There will be some sort of fund raiser to collect the balance still needed after the grants were received. The projected start date for installing the panels is scheduled for March.
  • Pastor Sandy gave an update about the Lord's Cupboard and the West Salem UMC and the Jason Lee UMC Food Banks. More volunteers and a coordinator are needed for West Salem's Food Bank as Pastor Norm will retire on Dec. 31.
  • The ODC is continuing the process of incorporating the Salem/Keizer Open Door Churches. All of the paper work has been submitted.
  • Wendy Herrett, the ODC Board of Trustees Chair, said that a Church is interested in purchasing the Englewood UMC Church building.
  • The ODC will request only one full-time pastor to begin July 1st due to the financial concerns of the congregations. Pastors Wendy, Alyssa and Mario will be continuing with the Open Door Churches. Pastors Sandy and Dan are retiring and will be greatly missed.
  • Mario Gonzalez, the pastor at Las Nacionas, is continuing to recuperate in Cuba and the pain has diminished. In his absence Zaida Huereca, a Lay Leader and Aurturo Fernandez will share the pastoral duties.
  • The Communication Coordinator Position will continue, but at an hourly rate instead of salaried.
  • Trinity UMC has two representatives on the Board - Ann Jeffries and Kathy Webb. Pat Gillespie is the Open Door Churches Board Treasurer. If you have questions or concerns, don't hesitate to contact one of these representatives.

   Go to to see information about each of the churches and ways you can be involved.

Come visit!
We, as Open Door Churches, are a wonderful community together. To continue building our relationships, it's good to visit each other. If you would like to visit one of the other Open Door Churches, here are all our Sunday service times:
  • Trinity - 9:30 a.m.
  • Morningside - 10:30 a.m.
  • Salem 1st - 8:45 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.
  • Las Naciones - 12:30 p.m.
  • Keizer Clear Lake - 10 a.m.
  • West Salem - 11 a.m.
Open Door Churches | Website