Pastor's e-Note
October 12, 2021
Dear Church family and friends,
 
Greetings in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ!  Recently I read this devotion which was written by our former senior pastor, Rev. Jim White. His words touched my heart and soul deeply, and helped me regain the strength to go through a tough week. So I want to share it with you. May you be surrounded by God’s amazing peace and grace this week! 
Rev. Jennifer
 
The Joy of Doing Nothing
 
OK! We can never really “do nothing.” Even when we’re not “doing” anything, our mind is never in neutral. But one sure sign we are comfortable being home with ourselves is the whimsical and occasional joy of having “nothing” to do!
 
This usually means there’s a break in routine, or that we’ve completed a “to do” list.
The problem/opportunity is that even when we’re doing “nothing” we are still restless. No one said it better than Augustine: “You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you’.”
 
It is true that the process of becoming a whole person requires us to spend time in the rabbit holes of the mind, not just embracing old wounds and nurturing future hopes, but learning to enjoy the wholeness of just being home with ourselves.
 
Clearing a cluttered mind is like clearing out an attic filled with "stuff." It begins with paying attention and letting go of cherished illusions, until there is space enough for the joy of simply Being.
 
Here, joy can begin to seep through cracks in the soul created by trauma, bereavement, unhealed divorce, chronic illness, unhealthy relationships, the challenges of disabilities, and the general wear and tear of growing older.
 
These maladies are often the result of loading ourselves up with over-stretched schedules, crammed with enough commitments to keep us from the real truth about ourselves:
that our emptiness is God-shaped and can be filled by “doing nothing” other than the openness to being discovered...when walking along a stream, paying attention to the smallest of beings and things, or enjoying the scent of roses wafting through a bedroom window at midnight.
 
This is who we are! We were born with an inherent longing to Be in union with our True Self, and in union with the Divine One hidden in, what Richard Rohr calls, "God-soaked matter" which is the Cosmos.
 
Mystics since the dawn of human history came to see:
The more you know your self, the more you know God.
The more you know God, the more you will know your self.
The more you know God , the more you will love your neighbor.
.....Pause and let this truth seep in.
 
This sense of Wholeness or Oneness comes more easily to those who are willing to quit being “on” all the time in a life of always making plans (as though life is some kind of dress rehearsal) until we finally become the victims of the tyranny of our own expectations!
 
It's no surprise that sooner or later we become "tired of being tired" and it's: "stop the world, I want to get off!" Indeed, this kind of tiredness is a Messenger sent to heal us... sometimes by the lingering perfume of roses in the midnight of the soul.
 
Max Enhrmaan put it well:
"You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive God to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul."
 
Jim White
_______________________________________________________
The lingering perfume of roses in the midnight of the soul ...a messenger sent to heal!
photo by Jim at Capitola, CA
Worship With Us
Confirmation Sunday
In-Person and Live Stream
October 17 at 10:00 AM
This Sunday we will confirm 5 youth: Avery Bryan, Thomas Bruno, Evelyn Collins, John Martinez, and Owen Shorter. They are going to share a “Statement of Faith” during the worship service in lieu of a sermon. We are very thankful for all of our pastors, teachers, mentors, and parents. Special thanks to Mary Beth for making a beautiful banner. You wouldn’t want to miss this Sunday, so come on down and celebrate this wonderful service with us.
Prayer Requests
Please join us in praying for our brothers and sisters in Christ who are in need of prayers.

We share prayers of comfort and healing for Celine August.

Let us also offer special prayers for those who have gone on to God's eternal rest, including Jimmy, uncle of Nicole Leeman's brother-in-law. We offer prayers of comfort for the family.
Upcoming Services
All Saints Sunday - November 7
All Saints Day is an opportunity to give thanks for all those who have gone before us in the faith. We'd like to remember our loved ones who have passed away since November 2020. Please send the names of your loved ones to the church office by October 26, 2021. All names of our saints will be read at the worship service. Thank you.
Fall Stewardship Drive – ENTRUSTED
Consecration Sunday - November 14
We are excited about this year’s Stewardship Campaign, Entrusted! You will be receiving an invitation letter with a pledge card in the mail soon. We believe our congregation is enthusiastic and hopeful about our church. Please plan to attend a Consecration Sunday on Nov. 14 and make your financial commitment for 2022 as your act of worship for our beloved church. We invite you to bring your pledge card on Nov. 14 and dedicate it during the service. If that’s not convenient, you can mail it to or drop it off at the church office. Thank you for your generous giving to our church.
Health and Safety Update
Masks are now required by all in attendance, regardless of vaccination status. We thank you for your spirit of cooperation.
Coming Soon
Small Group via Zoom
Ask: Faith Questions in a Skeptical Age
Beginning October 19, 8-9 PM
Do you have questions about your faith? Questions are good, and can challenge us to go beyond easy answers and grow in our walk with God. Join us as we explore some difficult questions like: Why is there suffering and evil? How can I believe in a God I can’t prove? Was the resurrection real? Why do Christians disagree about so many things? Purchase suggested reading on Amazon by clicking here.

Contact Rev. June Tamburro for more information.
Webinar Watch Party at BUMC
October 20, 7-9 PM
Join us for a free webinar watch party featuring New Testament scholar and author, Dr. Amy-Jill Levine. Dr. Levine’s topic will be Agreeing to Disagree: How Jews and Christians Read the Same Texts Differently.  She will lead a discussion around what prompts these differences, how we can learn through each other’s lenses, and what might such new vision suggest about Jewish and Christian identity?

We will meet in room 25. Please register with Rev. June no later than October 17.
Trunk or Treat
October 24, 3-5 PM
Join us for Trunk or Treat 2021 on October 24th from 3-5pm. We are excited to be back for another year of trick or treating, costumes, and decorating fun! Our event will be held outdoors, rain or shine. Masks will be optional outdoors and required indoors for bathrooms. 

Families will need to purchase 1 ticket per family. We are collecting a $2 donation for each ticket that will go towards SHIP food pantry in Somerville that was hit hard during Hurricane Ida. Links to purchase your time stamped family ticket are available at bridgewaterumc.org/trunk-or-treat.

There will be a bin for candy donations near the Mission Closet, for those who would like to donate to the event. We are also accepting monetary donations by check or online. Once on the giving page, choose "Trunk or Treat" from the drop down menu.

To ensure that this year's Trunk or Treat is a success, we will need volunteers on the day of the event, as well as 30+ families to sign-up and host a trunk. If you sign-up to host a trunk you do not need a time slot ticket for your family. Click the buttons below for more details.
Helping Our Community
Food Drive Donations
Thank you for donating food to our neighbors. Please bring your non-perishable/non-expired items to the church, and place them in our “Food Bank” containers.

If you would prefer, you can bring your items to the Food Bank Network of Somerset County located at 7E Easy St, Bound Brook, NJ 08805. Thank you very much.
Thanksgiving Donations
The United Methodist Women, aka UMW, is now accepting monetary donations to support those with food insecurities at Thanksgiving. UMW will be specifically donating to Somerset County's "Adopt-a-Family for Thanksgiving" program and the Camden Neighborhood Center's turkey drive. If you would like to support these local organizations, please send your checks made payable to "Bridgewater United Methodist Women" to the church office or to Beth Stone, 6 Terrace Lane, Bridgewater 08807 by October 31 with the memo line "UMW turkeys." If you would prefer to donate online, click the button below and select "UMW Turkeys" from the fund drop-down list.
Library News
Search the online catalog to find wonderful books and media in the church library.

Come browse the collections in person. Please sign out everything you borrow from the collections.

Contact the librarian if you have questions.


This Week's Featured Item
(In the Junior Adult Collection)
Bully.com: A Novel, by Joe Lawlor
This mystery, detective story finds Jun Li, a brilliant seventh-grader, wrongly accused of cyberbullying. He has only one week to find the real culprit or face expulsion. Jun's investigation will bring him face-to-face with computer hackers, a jealous boyfriend, and other students who has been a victims of bullying.
Look next week for another featured item from the Junior Adult Collection.
BRIDGEWATER UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
651 COUNTRY CLUB ROAD • 908.526.1414
BRIDGEWATERUMC.ORG