New Hampshire Immigrant Solidarity Network Prayer Vigils are scheduled for Tuesdays March 17, April 7 and 21 and first and third Tuesdays thereafter. All are held at the Norris Cotton Federal Building at 275 Chestnut Street in Manchester, New Hamsphire, and begin at 9:00 a.m.
We also gather on the first Tuesday of the month right after the vigil (approximately 10:30 am) at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Manchester at 14 Elm Street, in the Parish Hall to hear reports from immigrant communities, engage in fellowship, and plan advocacy together.
Your participation is welcomed. If you would like to carpool, sign up here. Please contact Rosemary Affeldt [firstname.lastname@example.org] for more details.
Editor’s Note: Lars Johanson submitted this report on the June 7-8 New England Synod Assembly. The Rev. Leila Ortiz served as guest preacher and was elected to serve as Bishop of the Metro DC Synod of the ELCA at the Metro DC Synod Assembly held June 14-15. We’ll add links to the storytelling presentation by keynote speaker Margot Leitman as well as the sermon by the Rev. Leila Ortiz when they become available.
Pastor Kyle Seibert, Rosemary Affeldt and I attended the NE Synod Assembly in Worcester, MA. Over 500 men and women attended the two-day conference from congregations all over New England. One of the lasting impressions of the meeting was the number of women who hold leading positions within the synod and as pastors of various congregations. Many of them gave presentations and led devotions and worship.
A considerable amount of time was devoted to “church business” such as presentation of memorials and reports from Bishop Hazelwood and various components of the synod. I was very impressed with the four memorials that were approved and will be presented later this summer at the ELCA National Assembly. Two of the memorials dealt with Continue reading What Happened at New England Synod Assembly?
Our Savior Lutheran Church is a Covenant Church with the Bread for the World (BFW) movement. BFW currently is ecumenical in scope; but was started by a Lutheran Pastor in New York City, in the early 70s. BFW asks us to communicate with our legislators about hunger related issues throughout the year, but each year they focus on one particular issue, for an annual Offering of Letters
Reading the news, it is hard to imagine that progress has been made in reducing global poverty and hunger, but they have literally been cut, nearly in half over the past 30 years. In countries such as Ghana and Honduras, one of the effects of chronic malnutrition, developmental stunting, has been reduced by nearly 1/3rd over the past 10 years!! This has been accomplished by emphasizing good nutrition during the first 1,000 days of a mother’s pregnancy through her child’s second birthday.
In Collaboration with Christ Church at Dartmouth and the Upper Valley Working Group a person-to-person effort called The Friendship Initiative is beginning.
“The Friendship Initiative” involves a volunteer or group of volunteers (a family unit, a couple, a single retiree or small group of students) reaching out to a family, couple, or single individual to provide positive support. This support requires a trip to Manchester every 4-6 weeks for personal interaction which could be in the form of a walk, teaching English, tutoring a child, helping with a resume, or simply going out for pizza. The program does not expect the volunteers to solve problems or financial issues. Financial issues are normally handled by the family’s case worker at the International Institute of New England (IINE), the entity that resettles refugees in Manchester and Nashua, NH.
Volunteers will be introduced to refugee families through Sister Irene Marie Pelland, a nun from Sisters of the Presentation of Mary, who has been working with refugees since 1985.
A glimpse into the lives of refugees in Manchester:
To find our more or offer your friendship please contact Lars Johanson or the church office.