Thursday
 August 13, 2020
BLANKIES

Scripture: James 1:17a “Every good action and every perfect gift is from God.” (Int Children’s Bible)

My kids always loved their “Binkies” - their particular brand of pacifier. The twins, in particular, always had them pinned to their shirts for ready access (in those days no one thought of that as a bad practice!). In fact, so attached were they to them, that to help them not have them all day, in the morning I would tell them that their Binkie friends were so tired from being sucked on all night, that they needed to take a nap. And so we would gently tuck them in and the kids would kiss them “Nighty-night”!

So I was kind of primed for my grandkids loving them too. Not so. My granddaughter Alexandra loved her thumb – and her beautiful, very soft pink blanket, which she would hold close at bedtime and crawl completely under when she was upset. And when grandson Ben came along, he didn’t suck his thumb – he would gather a number of small light-weight blankets in his arms and fall asleep sucking the corner of one of them. They so loved their blankies! So much so that I was unprepared for something they each did.

I was babysitting the kids one evening and 4 year old Alexandra wanted to make a surprise for her mom and dad when they came home. So she took this pretend cake that she had and got it all fancied up and then put it on the couch. But then she realized she had to hide it somehow so they wouldn't see it until the morning when she was awake. So I suggested we could get some towels and cover it, but she said no and went upstairs and brought down her beloved pink blanket. She indicated she was going to cover the cake with her blanket, and I said, “But then you won't have it all night, will you?” And she was thoughtful for a good minute and then said,“This is my decision and this is what I want to do.” And she did - with no regrets.

Then a few days later, Ben just blew me away. By mid-afternoon I began to feel sick and so I told a 2 year old, mostly pre-verbal Ben that I was feeling sick and I would really appreciate it if he could play by himself

while I sat in the chair and closed my eyes. He did leave me, only to come back minutes later with every one of his precious blankets in his arms which he eagerly laid in my lap. He gave me his comfort.

Alexandra and Ben each gave away (for a while!) something very precious to them. One did it very deliberately, after some serious thought. The other did it very impulsively, from his heart. But the process did not matter – what mattered was what they each gifted someone with something very dear to them.

The utter purity of it all has been a real eye-opener – actually a real soul-opener – for me. I can want to hang on to – grasp tightly – not let go – material things that are dear to me. But even more so, I can hang on to myself and my time and my energy and not want to give those away. And I can close my heart to others and their needs instead of opening it.

And then I think of all of God’s gifts – so freely given – to me – with the culmination of the gift of his own Son. And as I think of my grandchildren’s giving hearts and God’s giving heart, I hear a song singing in my heart – first softly, then louder and louder:

“Freely, freely you have received; freely, freely give.
Go in my name. . . .” (Carol Owens)
Go and freely give. Go in my name. Go. Give. Freely. Open your heart.

Prayer:
Lord, open my heart to other’s hearts - to give to them as freely as you have given to me. Amen

-- Lyn Fitz
Throwback to our 2020 Lenten Fish Fry:
PRAYER SHAWLS
With the Church currently closed, the prayer shawls have taken up residence with Hunt and Ann. They are actually quite comfortable in the coolness of their new home but they would love to be of comfort to someone in need of God’s love. Please contact Ann at mapalook@comcast.net or 768-7013 if you would like a shawl. If you call, the basket will await your visit in their courtyard. Blessings -
#photosfromhome
Ann Look and Donna Bruce pinning quilts for Basket of Hope.
#PHOTOSFROMHOME
A CALL FOR SELFIES AND AT-HOME PICTURES
Hi there! I love showing you photos of what we are doing at the church, but what I think would be an even more amazing thing to share is a picture of you! Send me pictures and/or videos of you/your family/your pets/your garden/your cooking/etc with a short description. communicate@stjohns-abq.org
A CALL FOR DAILY DEVOTIONALS
Would you be interested in submitting a daily devotional for the Newsletter? If so, send an email to Pastor Pam at prowley@stjohns-abq.org!

Please include the following items when writing a devotion:
A Focus Word or Phrase
A Scripture (it can simply be referenced)
The Body of the Devotion (one page is a good guideline)
A Prayer or a Spiritual Practice
"GETTING STARTED ON YOUR FAMILY HISTORY MANUSCRIPT" GENEALOGY CLASS
This Zoom genealogy class is for people who have amassed a lot of family information and are wondering what to do next. It will not teach introductory genealogy or memoir writing. Some of the types of manuscripts to be considered include ancestral reports, descendancy reports, biographies, and edited letters or diaries. Each class will be one to two hours long, depending on the topic. Weekly assignments will be given, and in six weeks, students will have all of the major parts of a family-history manuscript and an abbreviated version of the content. The cost will be $10 per person, which will go to the UMW. A minimum of 6 people will be required for the class; a maximum of 12 Zoom connections will be accepted. A preliminary Zoom tutorial will be offered if needed. Check out the complete syllabus for topics and dates. Enroll by emailing Regina Hunter at drhunter@nmia.com or Terri Link at terrilink@comcast.net.
MOUNTAIN CATHEDRALS
Saturday, August 15 | 7:30 am

Mountain Cathedrals “Corrales Acequias and Bosque Preserve” a reflection on Psalm 104

This month, we walk on land “set aside” near the Rio Grande River. In 2016, the Audubon New Mexico declared the Corrales Bosque to be an important avian habitat to over 250 species of birds, where 662 acres on the west side of the river host protections for owls, hummingbirds, sparrows, crows and Cooper’s hawks. Psalm 104 comes to mind, a place where…

“the trees of the Lord are watered abundantly… in them the birds build their nests…”

As Christians, we are called to be holy, to be “set aside” for God and in service to God. Through our service to God we are invited into relationship with God, with our neighbors, and with creation. In this way, we are all connected to the goodness of God’s creation.

So this is your invitation, to step into God’s restoring grace-giving presence, as beloved children, to walk into a creation that is God’s place of renewal and wonder. An invitation to practice the means of grace, sharing communion, reflecting on scripture, and walking in prayer… in God’s creation… or as Charles Wesley wrote an invitation to become “lost in wonder, love and praise”.

“O Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom you have made them all;
the earth is full of your creatures… they all look to you…
when you send forth your spirit, they are created;
and you renew the face of the ground.”

Join us Saturday, August 15th, 7:30 am at St John’s east parking lot. We will then travel to Corrales (but not carpool). San Ysidro Catholic Church (5015 Corrales Road) has allowed us to park in their lot, which is adjacent to the acequia. If you meet us in Corrales, please arrive by 8:00. We should be back to the cars by noon. The hike is level and roughly five miles. Do remember to bring a mask, snacks/lunch, sun protection and ample water.

Peace and grace,
Mike Furnish and Kelly Giese
Sundays | 9:30 & 11:00 am
St. John’s will live-stream a worship service on Sunday morning at 9:30 am (Contemporary) on the Abide Facebook page and 11:00 am (Traditional) on the homepage of the website. We hope you’ll worship with us! (Pastors Pam and Kelly will lead, along with Shea Perry, Jim Ahrend, and Matt Greer). We hope that you’ll participate by singing and praying at home! Any questions? Email Matt at mgreer@stjohns-abq.org.
WEDNESDAY PRAYER SERVICE
Wednesdays | 8:00 am & 7:00 pm
Please join us on Wednesday mornings & evenings for a worship service of praise and prayer. This service will take place in the Memorial Garden of St. John’s on the west side of the building. This services is designed to be thirty minutes and will be led by Certified Lay Ministers Larry Luna & Joe Marshall. Please bring your own lawn chairs and sit six feet from your neighbor. In an effort to keep all of us safe and healthy, masks are required.
DRIVE-IN, DROP-OFF
Saturday, August 29 | 5:00 - 7:00 pm

Let’s rally together for the need of others! On Saturday, August 29, 5:00 – 7:00 pm in the east parking lot of St. John’s United Methodist Church (2626 Arizona NE), the Missions’ Team will be collecting any of the following items for Silver Horizons and the Four Corners Ministry:

·     Any non-perishable food
·     Toilet paper
·     Paper towels
·     Facial tissues
·     Hygiene products (shampoo, conditioner, men’s and women’s deodorants, toothpaste)
·     Bottled water

So, every time you go shopping this month or have products delivered to you, think about these two organizations and pick up some extra items. We’ll collect all these items on Saturday, August 29th!

If you’d rather give $$ instead of buying the products yourself, you can bring it that night, mail it to the church, or go to the St. John’s online giving. If you want the $$ split between the two organizations, write “Drive-in, Drop-off” in the memo field. If you’d rather it would go to an individual organization write either “Silver Horizons” or “Four Corners Ministry.”

The Missions’ Team thanks you so much for your generosity!!!
Online Groups
ZOOM TUTORIAL
The announcements below include using the program "Zoom" to group-video chat. You can find a tutorial on how to use Zoom HERE!
NEW YOUTH ZOOM FOR THE FALL
Summer is past, and as we get back to school? Our Solid Ground youth group will resume meeting every Sunday at 4:00-5:15PM with new games, discussions, and faith-building activities plus new features of the student led Soap Box and Top 5s. Log-in. at: bit.ly/Fall2020UMYF (case sensitive).

SONRISE YOUTH CHOIR ZOOMS
While we are not yet allowed to sing together, stay informed about the activities of the Sonrise Youth Choir, including weekly Zooms on Thursdays at 4:00 pm (Jackbox games!!), and musical workshops in the Fall! Email Shea at sonrisechoir@gmail.com!
PARENT'S CLUB
Tuesdays | 7:30 pm
"COFFEE BREAK" WITH PASTORS PAM & KELLY
Wednesdays | 1:30 pm
Log in and have coffee (or tea) and chat with Pastors Pam and Kelly! Zoom link HERE.
WEDNESDAY NIGHT KIDS' BIBLE CLUB
Wednesdays | 6:00 pm
Wednesday Night Bible Club is still on! Grade school friends join us on Zoom to get your weekly Bible lesson, watch the So & So Show, and pray with your friends. This summer we are taking a Focus on Faith! Don’t miss it! Email tmacali@stjohns-abq.org for more information!
NEW SPIRITUAL MOVEMENT CLASS 101
Thursdays | 1:30 pm -- Starting August 6th
Meet by zoom with Pastor Pam for a 30 minute spiritual practice every Thursday afternoon. We will explore different ways to pray, to commune with God, to nurture our spiritual lives with Christ through the Indwelling Holy Spirit. Space is limited, join the class HERE.
THE PRACTICE OF PRESENCE
Fridays | 9:30 - 10:00 am
Susan Brumbaugh, staff mental health counselor at St. John's, is offering a FREE weekly gathering on FRIDAYS at 9:30 am to practice mindfulness meditation. Each 30-minute session begins with a brief welcome, a description of the focus (e.g., breath, body, senses, emotions, thoughts), a 15-20 minute guided practice, and an opportunity to debrief and share experiences.
Anyone is welcome--no experience is necessary. (And, yes! It's okay for Christians to meditate.) If you want to learn more prior to starting, the sessions will be similar to ones she leads and records on YouTube. Each session will be hosted on Zoom. HERE is the zoom link. Please contact Susan Brumbaugh, counselor@stjohns-abq.org, or 505-506-6716, if you have questions.
Congregational Care Corner
The passing of Dick Donavan
St John’s heard this week that one of our long-time members, Dick Donovan, passed on to glory on August 7th. Dick and Marilyn joined St. John’s back in 1972. He was 89. Please pray for the family in the wake of his passing.
VIRTUAL PRAYER QUILT
Stacie, John and Jack Ross are the recipients for the prayer quilt on display for August 3rd - 16th.

In lieu of tying knots, please pray this prayer (or your own prayer): “Father, we pray for safe travels and new adventures as Stacie, John and Jack embark on this new phase of their lives."

PRAYER SUPPORT
How we support you and your family in prayer during this difficult time? Prayers for health, employment, peace? Please send your prayer requests to the Prayer Team: mapalook@comcast.net or submit them on our website HERE.

GO-FER TEAM
It is hard to get out and many people shouldn’t. Is there something you need delivered from the store? If we are able to help, we have a few volunteers who would like to serve as Go-fers for people who need something but cannot get it on their own. Please pass any requests on to Jarrod at c.care@stjohns-abq.org

ONLINE COUNSELING SERVICE AVAILABLE
The St. John's staff includes a licensed mental health counselor who is available to meet virtually (using a smartphone or computer) in a secure online platform during these anxious times. If you or someone you know is struggling emotionally, counseling is available. Click here or contact Susan Brumbaugh at 505-506-6717 or counselor@stjohns-abq.org for more details about session and cost information. Susan also has a Youtube Channel with mindfulness tips HERE.

VIRTUAL TAI CHI WITH KATHY
STEPHEN MINISTRY
Stephen Ministers are members of St. John’s who have gone through 50 hours of training to provide high quality, confidential Christian care to individuals experiencing a crisis or life challenge such as divorce, grief, job loss, hospitalization, relocation, or loneliness.

How does someone get a Stephen Minister?
If you or someone you know could benefit from the care of a Stephen Minister, please call the office 505-883-9717 or email stephenministry@stjohns-abq.org
AUGUST SPECIAL OFFERING: WESLEY FOUNDATION
  School at UNM will be starting soon in some form this year. It will be an stressful time for all students, so our opportunity to financially support Wesley House, for both the students who live there and those who participate in other Wesley Foundation programs is more important than ever.

 Please pray for the students and their leaders as they reach out to other students on campus as well. Please pray that Wesley House may be a place where all may find God's love and peace in these difficult times. Please give generously.
ST. JOHN'S FACILITY IS CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
In accordance with the New Mexico Department of Health order, our facility will be closed until further notice. We will keep you apprised as things develop.

Your St. John's pastors and staff are still very much on the job, and are available to you during this time. Please reach out to us if we can help you in any way!
CONTACT US
Office Administrator, Debbie Brown, will be answering the phone at St. John’s every weekday from 9:00 am-2:00 pm. Please call the office if you have any concerns or pastoral care needs. Debbie will get messages to Pastor Pam and Pastor Kelly. The office number is 505-883-9717.
Contact Us
www.stjohns-abq.org
(505) 883-9717
2626 Arizona St NE | Albuquerque, NM 87110
Office Hours (call only): Monday - Friday, 9:00 am - 2:00 pm
Questions? Contact Shea Perry at communicate@stjohns-abq.org