May 15, 2022
A Message from Co-Pastor Rev. Barbara Lemmel
Grace and peace, Harvard-Epworth community! Especially when that grace and peace is hard to find, because of so many swirling events in our personal lives, in our community and country, and in our world.

This Sunday we’ll be exploring this passage from Revelation 21: “Then I saw new heavens and a new earth … beautiful as a couple on their wedding day.” It’s a vision of what things will be like at the end of time, when the world — indeed, all creation — reflects God’s full purpose of love and life for all.

This vision of a new heaven and earth awakens a great longing in my heart for things to be made right, especially when the news is full of so much in our world that is far from being right. The human longing is universal, I believe, and a sign of the Spirit’s presence in each of us.

Pablo Neruda speaks to this longing in his poem, “Keeping Quiet” which I offer to the longing, and the hopefulness, of all our hearts. May this sharing help you find a place of grace, a place of peace, from which to live with wholeness and with love.

by Pablo Neruda

Now we will count to twelve
and we will all keep still.

For once on the face of the earth,
let’s not speak in any language;
let’s stop for one second,
and not move our arms so much.

It would be an exotic moment
without rush, without engines;
we would all be together
in a sudden strangeness.

Fisherman in the cold sea
would not harm whales
and the man gathering salt
would look at his hurt hands.

Those who prepare green wars,
wars with gas, wars with fire,
victories with no survivors,
would put on clean clothes
and walk about with their brothers
in the shade, doing nothing.

What I want should not be confused
with total inactivity.
Life is what it is about;
I want no truck with death.

If we were not so single-minded
about keeping our lives moving,
and for once could do nothing,
perhaps a huge silence
might interrupt this sadness
of never understanding ourselves
and of threatening ourselves with death.
Perhaps the earth can teach us
as when everything seems dead
and later proves to be alive.

Now I’ll count up to twelve
and you keep quiet and I will go.
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Ukraine Relief Update from the Missions Committee
Church members have raised more than $8,000 for aid and relief for Ukrainians since the Russians invaded the country on Feb. 24. Our donations were sent last week to the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) and the Kyiv School of Economics (KSE), where Ukrainian native and church member Bogdan Savych graduated. (In this week's Adult Forum, we'll discuss “Reflections on Ukraine” led by Bogdan and Gwen Savych--see below for details.)

For an update on UMCOR relief efforts, you can view two short (under five minutes) videos on their website. To learn more on how donations and helping and to hear what is giving UMCOR partners hope, please click here. In the second video, UMCOR expands on "how our partners are encouraged by the support they’ve received, where they see God in the midst of suffering, and what you can pray for right now."

UMCOR donations will be used for refugee assistance relief as well as for direct aid for those still in areas under attack. KSE is buying and distributing medical kits, such as those shown in the photo. In a weekend Facebook post, school president Tymofiy Mylovanov said the kits are being delivered to Kharkiv and other cities, "the front lines where people suffer the most." To all donors, he said, "Thank you for your support. These kits stop blood loss and save lives. One life at a time."

The Missions Committee continues to collect donations for UMCOR and KSE, either through checks (made out to HEUMC) brought to worship or mailed to the church, or online at by clicking the "Give Now" button, then choosing "Ukraine Relief" in the drop-down menu. Donations will be sent weekly to these organizations.
Community Potluck: This Sunday, May 15, 12:15pm
Let's celebrate all our students, especially those moving and wish them goodbye and good luck. Join us outside after the 11:00 service for this community potluck in place of coffee hour! 

This event will be hosted by all women of the church - so women, please bring your favorite casserole, salad, side dish, dessert, or whatever you'd like to share. Beverages will be provided. 
Join Us In Person and Online for Sunday School!
After more than two years online, we’re offering an in person experience for Sunday School (also live-streamed for those who want to attend online). Thanks to some technology equipment in the Sunday School room, participants and teachers can see and interact with one another on location and over Zoom. Here’s a picture from May 8, with Nancy Akbari in the Sunday School room and Warren Brown getting ready to lead the lesson from his home. 

We are asking those who attend in person to mask; the teachers and volunteers will be masked as well.
If you have questions, please contact us at or

Our Sunday Morning Schedule is as follows:
Children's Sunday School (Ages 3-5th grade)
10:00 am - 10:25 am 
Youth Sunday School (Grades 5-12)
10:30 am - 11:00 am
Events and Groups for University Students and Young Adults
In-Person Game Night  Friday, May 13 at 7pm
We're very excited for our first in-person game night! Our gracious host, Janie, welcomes folks to bring desserts, if you can, for an outdoor potluck by the firepit. Feel free to also bring a game from home, we'll have Uno and Jenga for folks to play and chat. Email Sarah Harbaugh ( to RSVP so she can share the address with you!

Student Celebration Lunch  Sunday, May 15 at 12:15ish
See above for more details on this lunch, hosted by the Hospitality Committee as a way of honoring graduates, all the student accomplishments this year, and other young adults who are heading off to new things. If you'd like to be included in the blessing, please email me (Sarah) to let me know you'll be attending! Additionally, if you can't be there the 15th but would still like to be named and included in the blessing, please email me and let me know. I hope this gathering can be a time for honoring the community of Young Adults at Harvard-Epworth and celebrating what's new in each others lives!

Brunch Bunch! – Sunday, May 29 at 12:45pm
This monthly event is a great time for folks to catch up and mingle as we share a meal together. After the 11am worship service at Harvard-Epworth, we’ll head to a local restaurant for brunch around 12:45pm. Bring cash or venmo to chip in $5 and the church covers the rest! Whether you worship online or in person, everyone is welcome to join. If you plan to come, send me an email so I can reserve a table for us. 

Life Groups – Every Sunday at 7pm
Life groups meet weekly on Sunday nights to offer a space for young adults and students to share how they’re doing, prayer requests, and stay accountable with one another on our commitment to live ethical and faithful lives. Each month we practice a new form of prayer together to encourage one another's spiritual growth. Life groups are open to anyone who wants to join, just send me an email so I can share the Zoom link with you.

In May, life groups are focusing on the prayer practice of breath prayer. In Genesis 2:7, God breathes life into creation when forming the first human being. And in the new testament, the greek word for Spirit, pneuma, also means breath. A breath prayer can incorporate scripture or can simply be a time of connecting with the Spirit of life God breathes into us all. In a pattern of equal measure (at your own pace) breathe in, hold, breathe out, hold, and repeat. Practice this as often as you can--try to focus on God's presence in each breath and in that moment of prayer.
Memorial Service for Ann Cobb
The memorial service for Ann Cobb, a longtime member of Harvard-Epworth who passed away in February, will be held on Friday, May 20 at 2:00pm.  In-person attendance is limited due to COVID; the service will be live-streamed at 
Third Thursdays with Dave Bryant and Friends: May 19
Please join us for a monthly jazz series continues every Third Thursday evening at the Harvard-Epworth United Methodist Church hosted by keyboardist and composer Dave Bryant accompanied by varying musical guests. This month, the concert will be Thursday, May 19 at 8:00pm. Dave will be performing with Jerome Deupree (drums), Russ Gershon (saxophones and flute), Yahuba Garcia-Torres (percussion), J. Johnson (guitar), Rick McLaughlin (bass), and Bryan Murphy (trumpet) in the church vestry. Updates on each month’s musical guests can be found at . Admission at the door: $10. 
Adult Forum on Sundays at 10:00am
Adult Forum is now in a hybrid format. All are welcome to attend the weekly meetings, which are held at 10:00am, before the Sunday worship service.

You can join us in the pastor's study at the church or remotely via Zoom using the following link:

On this Sunday, May 15 and next week, May 22, please join us for “Reflections on Ukraine” led by Bogdan and Gwen Savych.
Amplify Your Impact: UMC Faith and Philanthropy Webinar for Women
Did you know that 86% of women have yet to seek advice as they create a legacy of personal meaning? Only 14% of women have spoken to a financial advisor about charitable gift planning strategies. The history and role of women and their giving, both in the nonprofit and secular arenas, has been very different than men. Fortunately, those trends are rapidly changing.

 Making an impact means understanding what is important to you and why you want to have an influence. Women are nurturing and tend to feel compelled in many directions. Which directions are most important? Finding your own personal mission will help guide your financial decisions.

On Wednesday, May 25 and Thursday, May 26, the United Methodist Foundation of New England is hosting two webinars for women on "Amplifying your Impact" in faith and philanthropy. Click here for more details and to register!
Thank You, Tables of Eight Hosts and Participants!
In late April and early May, we hosted 4 Tables of Eight (sometimes 10 or 12!) in person, and two on Zoom. Thank you to all who welcomed diners into your home and/or backyard! Thanks also to all who participated, for your food contributions, your joyful presence, and your thoughtful discussion. This has been a wonderful opportunity for folks to get to know one another better, and for Pastor Mitch and Barb to connect with you all. We appreciate your reflections as we develop the theme of Harvard-Epworth UMC: “A place to Begin, Belong and Become.”
Next Women's Potluck: May 24
The next Women's Potluck will be on Wednesday, May 24 at Katie Carlone's place! All vaccinated women of the church are warmly invited to come together for an evening of fun, good food, and sharing. Join us 6:45pm at 9 Washington Ave, Apt 6 in Cambridge. Email Katie at (or text 617-710-1062) with questions or for a parking permit. We hope you will join us! 
Looking for Sunday School Helpers
This month, please consider signing up to volunteer for virtual Sunday school, 10:00-11:00. We’ll meet the youth and children via Zoom, share a little about our week, and discuss the theme of that Sunday’s service. It’s always fun, and interesting! Sign up now through June at 
Donate Flowers for Sunday Morning Worship!
We have made arrangements with Coady Florist in Cambridge to provide us with a lovely floral arrangement on Sunday for only $50. This is an excellent way to celebrate someone's birthday, graduation, or other important event. You can also give flowers in memory of someone dear to you, perhaps to remember a birthday. You may take your flowers home or give them to a friend or loved one. Sign up at or contact Janet Allen at
Payment may be made by check to the church office or by using

Thank you for bringing beauty to our worship!
Friday Cafe: Join in Hybrid Buffet Service
The Friday Cafe, at First Church in Cambridge at 11 Garden St, provides a nutritious lunch and a welcoming community to over 100 homeless and at-risk neighbors every Friday afternoon. As of February 18, the Friday Cafe is resuming its “hybrid” buffet service, at these hours:
Café: 12:00 to 3:00
Opening Shift (Kitchen): 11:00–1:30
Opening Shift (Hall): 11:15 to 1:30

Harvard-Epworth provide volunteers on the third Friday of each month (next on Friday, May 20), from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Volunteers may work in the kitchen, buffet line, donations table, or work other positions. COVID-19 vaccination is required of volunteers. You may sign up at the new Onsite Volunteer sign up link:

If you wish to volunteer on the third Friday, please contact the Harvard-Epworth office at or 617.354.0837 so that we can connect you with the team. 

For those who like to cook at home, volunteers may contribute main courses, salads, sides, soup, and desserts each week. You may sign up at the new Cooking sign up link:  More information about the Friday Café may be found at, Facebook and Instagram.

Outdoor Church Sandwich Ministry
On the third Saturday of every month (next on Saturday, May 21), a volunteer team from Harvard Epworth brings sandwiches to homeless neighbors in Harvard and Central Squares.

Interested in bringing sandwiches? Thank you -- 20 is a good number. The homeless like meat (roast beef, ham and turkey), as well as chicken, egg and tuna salad. White, oat and whole wheat breads are all good. You can add a bit of mustard and lettuce for the meats. We avoid mayonnaise for safety reasons, but it's okay for the salads.

Interested in joining the sandwich distribution? We gather at the church at 2:30 on the third Saturday of the month. For more details, email Lane at
Join us for Coffee Hour
Please join us after worship in the Vestry (or, if the weather is unseasonably mild, outside) for coffee hour refreshments and fellowship. We ask that masks continue to be worn except when eating/drinking, while inside (please see below for a note on mask requirements). 

We'd love your help filling the table on this date and going forward. Please sign up at this link ( or contact Sarah Bailey ( or 917 439 1103) if you would like to contribute. 

At both worship services and Adult Forum, we continue to require persons to wear KN94 or N95 masks (supplied at church, as needed) and to maintain a safe social distance; we ask those attending to be fully vaccinated and boosted as allowed.
Consider Being a Liturgist
Liturgy means “the work of the people,” and it is a
great blessing to have lay liturgists each Sunday!
Be part of the 11:00 Worship Team; sign up

Please indicate the Sundays you are available; we’ll
coordinate based on everyone's availability and let
you know when it is your turn as the liturgist at
We are the Church: Voices of Harvard Epworth
During the "online reality" that we find ourselves in, it is difficult for new people to get a sense of who we are as a church. Therefore, the Welcome and Evangelism committee is inviting people to submit a video (30 seconds or less) that introduces themselves and says what they find special about our church. We are hoping to put together a number of these short videos and release them in the coming weeks and months. This will be a great way for people to get a sense of this ministry we share in together. Please consider recording a short video and emailing it to Erin Lee, our Welcome & Evangelism Chair, at Thank you in advance for being a part of this important opportunity of welcome! 
Connect with Us Electronically
Harvard Epworth Church Member Online Directory
Remember that we have a Harvard Epworth Church Member Online Directory.  You can log in to the directory by going to by clicking on the link in the menu on the church website (it's next to the live stream link).

Current users can reset their password with the "Need a password" button on the directory login. If you don't have a directory account or access to it, email  and we will be in touch with login information for you.
Sermon Podcast Update: If you would enjoy listening to the Sunday sermon during the week they can now be found on Apple, Google, and Spotify by searching for Harvard-Epworth Church podcast. You can also still find them on the front page of our church website at
Help Harvard-Epworth While You Shop: Our Amazon Smile link shares some of the profits from any Amazon purchases with the church: If you shop via this link, a percentage of what you spend is automatically donated to the church.
Prayer Ministry: Each Wednesday morning (from 7:45am to 8am), some of the Harvard-Epworth congregation gather by phone for meditation and prayer. This gathering is a wonderful way to begin the day and to hold the concerns of our congregation in prayer. We would love to have you join us! To join in, dial +1 (605) 468-8016 and type in our access code: 658031#.
Looking Ahead...
  • Friday, May 13: Young Adult Game Night (7:00pm)
  • Sunday, May 15:
  • 9:00am: Worship Service
  • 10:00am: Adult Forum
  • 10:00am/10:30am: Sunday School
  • 11:00am: Worship Service
  • 12:15pm: Community Potluck Honoring Students
  • 7:00pm: Young Adult Life Groups
  • Wednesday, May 18: Prayer Call (7:45am)
  • Thursday, May 19: Dave Bryant and Friends Concert (8:00pm)
  • Friday, May 20:
  • Friday Cafe
  • Memorial Service for Ann Cobb
  • Saturday, May 21: Outdoor Church Sandwich Ministry
  • Wednesday, May 24: Women's Potluck
  • Sunday, May 29: Young Adult Brunch Bunch
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