Happenings July 30, 2020
As COVID-19 enters its sixth month, more and more individuals are becoming food-insecure. Operating out of Old Parish Church, The Sheffield Food Assistance Program has modified its protocols to meet safety standards, including curbside pickups. Supplies necessary to meet these standards and more protein-rich food are in demand. Even if you are only able to give a little, please help today:
Dear Friends,

When there isn’t a global health crisis baring down on us, life is hard. Over the past five months and counting the challenges and stress of life, this has been compounded for everyone. No exceptions. The most basic daily tasks can become hard to handle. Our emotions fluctuate from minute to minute and often we may just not know why. Just handling the ‘have tos’ of our day may be all we can muster. We’re all in the same boat.

Bryan Sexton, Ph.D out of Duke University has done an enormous of research on burnout. Physiologically, he notes, that as humans we’re hard wired to remember the negative (ever forgot a great joke? But rarely do we forget an insult inflicted on us). In addition, we have enhanced recall of input that occurs within the last two wakeful hours of our day. If, during those last two hours before bed, we take two minutes to focus on the positive elements of our day, to notice the good that is , in a very short period of time, our outlook on life including our emotional well-being will actually improve, to a similar level equivalent to having taken an antidepressant…really!


As I prepare to take an extended break of sabbatical time beginning on Monday, Aug. 3 rd , I invite you to join me in a fifteen-day practice called ‘3 Good Things’ that comes to us from Duke University and Bryan Sexton, PhD. It emerges from extensive clinical and non-clinical studies that show conclusive evidence for huge emotional health benefits that come from this simple daily practice. You can actually register with Duke at bit.ly/start3gt. They will provide you with the journal format for the fifteen days. Or, you are welcome to do it in a journal of your own.
It goes like this - each day about two hours before you go to bed, do the following:

1)     Write down 3 good things (three things that went well) that happened in your life that day (i.e. saw a stunning sunrise/sunset; enjoyed the beauty of nature/deer passing through/ received a surprise blessing/ phone call/ studied a bug/ a big or small blessing, it doesn’t matter)

2)     For each ‘good thing’ comment on where you found yourself in that good thing (I was aware; I was out walking in the yard; I called_____on the phone etc.)

3)     Then, write down what positive emotion best fit how that good thing made you feel.
Here is the list of ten emotions this study mentions:


After fifteen days, touch base with each other. Perhaps at a Wednesday afternoon social hour later in August, share where you are. 

Take care of yourself. Breathe. Notice the good that is!

Cocktails and Community
It's important that we be together, especially during this time when we must be so cautious about gathering in groups. Join us for our virtual Zoom Coffee/Cocktail Hour next Wednesday under the shade of a tree in your own backyard. We'll begin the conversation and draw you in.
You are most welcome to join us.

Wednesdays at 5:00pm
Please email Julie if you are interested in attending.
Because of you...
Tithes and offferings are always welcome by mail:
PO Box 387, Sheffield, MA 01257
Creating a happy healthy child
Create happy, healthy children. Please provide a meal for the school families who are struggling to put nutritious food on the table. We plan to continue School Family Meals through August, but the support is faltering. When we spoke to The Marketplace yesterday, only 20 out of the 45 needed family meals were supported. You can help today:

  • Call The Marketplace, 413-248-5040 ext 2
  • Order a School Family Meal and pay over the phone. (about $26 with tax.)
The center of everything on Fridays
Sheffield Farmers' Market: Fridays 3:00 - 6:00

Great produce, CORN, fresh jams, local flowers, cheeses, eggs, scrumptious pastries, spelt and sourdough bread, delicious take-home meals, locally raised meats, live entertainment, party boxes and extraordinary salts!

We have new and safe ways for people to shop.
Please wear your mask.
For the latest updates, please connect here:
We can help!
As your resources run low, The Sheffield Food Program
at Old Parish Church may be just the thing you need.
Monday mornings. Fresh produce, breads, meat and canned staples. Special dietary needs? We can accommodate you. Curbside pickup.

If you could use a few extra groceries next week, please call 229-2624 to learn more. Please don't be shy about reaching out. We are here to help.
weekly and monthly happenings
Sundays: Worship with us via Zoom at 10:00

Pastor Jill will be on sabbatical August 3 - September 2.
Belle Fox-Martin will lead us in worship during that time.

If you need emergency pastoral care while Jill is away,
pleast contact Pastor Erik Karas 413-248-1231

Mondays: Sheffield Food Assistance Program: 229-2624
Wednesdays: Coffee/Cocktail Hour via Zoom 5:00
Fridays: School Family Meals program
Fridays: Sheffield Farmers' Market 3:00 - 6:00
Old Parish Church
125 Main Street
PO Box 387
Sheffield MA 01257

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Our Identity Statement

We are a progressive Christian community where discovering God's presence, modeling Jesus' radical hospitality, and being a passionate voice for God's justice defines us.

We are an Open and Affirming Congregation
of The United Church of Christ