Dear American Baptist Friends of Vermont and New Hampshire:
Applications are now available for the ABW Scholarships for 2021-2022. This scholarship is available for all full-time college students who are members in our VT/NH ABC churches. This scholarship is really a combined ABW/ABC one.
Moneys for this scholarship comes from several sources. The ABC Region has four memorial scholarships. Money from three of these are given to the ABWomen to manage. This is usually around $1800.00 a year. The fourth is given to the Life Tree School of Ministry. Other money comes from the offering taken at the ABC Annual Gathering. The third source is from the women’s groups and the women themselves.
Since we have not had an annual gathering in person this past year and I’m not sure that we will this year before the summer, I am asking for donations to this fund from the churches and members of the churches in this Region. They may be sent to ABWMinistries/VNH care of me at Mary P. Hamblett, 20 Beaver Lake Avenue, Derry, NH 03038-4003.
This past year we had nine scholarship recipients, each getting $500.00. These students may reapply for the coming year. Applications for this scholarship have been sent to them. New applications for 2021-2022 are available by contacting me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am sending a list of these students so that you may uphold them with your prayers as they finish this very difficult semester. They come from our churches and are the future of our churches.
If you have any questions, please get in touch with me.
In Christ’s service,
Mary Hamblett, ABW Scholarship Chair
Camp Sentinel Winter News
Sentinel successfully operated 8 weeks of day camp in 2020, 14 weeks of Student Care this fall, safe and ALL Covid-free. We are excited to offer day and OVERNIGHT camp this summer.
STEADFAST 2021 VIDEO
Firm in belief. Determined. Firmly fixed in place. Immovable.
How do we apply the unchanging truth of God to a changing world? Camp provides a place where we can take unhurried moments to focus on the steadfast love of our unchanging God. At camp, we are reminded of how immovable God is through time in the quiet, gazing at the bright stars at night. Our faith deepens as we are reminded that steadfast love of the LORD never ceases…great is Thy faithfulness.
"The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23
Camp Sentinel is located in the foothills of the Ossipee Mountain range in Center Tuftonboro, New Hampshire. Established in 1949, Sentinel offers fun, quality Christian overnight and day camp for youth, adults, and families. Sentinel also hosts year-round retreats for groups up to 200 guests. Daily activity options include swimming, boating, arts & crafts, team building games, ropes course with zip line, rock wall, archery, hiking, large group team sports, and so many more great adventures. Each evening the entire camp comes together and gathers for Vespers, a time of worship and Bible study.
For more information or to sign up https://www.campsentinel.org/programs
Our Health and Safety Guidelines. https://www.campsentinel.org/health-and-safety
Sentinel was open last summer safe and covid free. We were able to do this by following our health and safety guidelines. This summer cabin capacity for overnight camp will be limited, so it is important to sign up soon. Programs for everyone – from 5 to 105 years old!
This month’s highlight: Homeschool Family Camp ($250 per family household)
Homeschool families are invited to come and enjoy time with friends while experiencing camp activities like: canoeing, archery, team games, hiking, crafts, campfires, and smores! Families stay in cabins. Fee includes lodging, activities, and meals.
Arrival: Monday May 31st 3pm; Departure: Wednesday June 2nd 10am.
Optional early arrival on Sunday.
For more information on our youth, adult and family programs. If you need more brochures mailed to you, please call us at (603) 539-4839 or email email@example.com.
Experience the stillness of 629 acres
Sentinel offers retreat experiences for individuals and groups up to 200 people (Spring, Summer & Fall) and up to 60 people (Winter) in our year-round rustic lodge. The Lodge has eight guest rooms sleeping up to 70 people in bunks and twin beds. We offer lodging and homemade food options for groups of 30 or more. For more information about retreats: https://www.campsentinel.org/retreats
Wixson Ministry Retreat
"Be Still" Did you know that Pastors (and families) may stay over at Sentinel for personal and family retreats? It is so important for our church leadership to take personal time to Be Still. Jesus teaches it and taking this time makes us stronger personally and spiritually. Sentinel is here to serve our churches! Check cabin availability through our Events Calendar. or Request More Information from our staff.
29 Sentinel Lodge Road, Center Tuftonboro, NH 03816
www.campsentinel.org (603) 539-4839
Where Relationships are Built and Lives are Changed
I am convinced that pastors and church leaders are in the precarious position of responding to three simultaneous crises — the pandemic, racial reckoning, and political violence. This unprecedented situation requires that pastors and church leaders stay connected with their people, lead from deeply held values, and name and grieve losses.
A year ago, many of us have had to be creative in our worship experiences. Last Spring, most of us went to “online only” worship services and meetings due to the pandemic. By the fall, many tried to “return to normal.” Churches decided to offer three options: online only, in-person worship, and “parking lot” services. But offering three modes of participation was and is exhausting for pastors. It seems to me that as pastors and church leaders, we are need some wisdom and what to do as we are burdened with society’s most wrenching challenges.
In the movie Men in Black, Agent K (Tommy Lee Jones) is explaining to Will Smith’s character why the government doesn’t simply admit the presence of aliens. Smith says, “Why don’t we just tell them? People are smart.” Jones responds, “The person is smart, but people are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals!” I love that quote. I laugh quietly every time I read it. I think that many in our churches and perhaps some of us have been swept up into group-think and mob-mentality. I truly believe that is happening right now. Regardless of our views of the seriousness or insignificance of this outbreak, the racial issues or the political violence, the collective panic is real among our churches, which could result in a devastating impact on the church. So what do we do?
Perhaps, we need to focus on Paul’s words in Colossians 3:15: Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. What I hear Paul saying to us in this verse, is that as we lead our churches, we need as leaders to exhibit a non-anxious presence. What is a non-anxious presence? A "non-anxious" presence is a true state of inner calm. A non-anxious presence means that we are connected to our people, but detached from their swirling emotions.
When Jesus’ disciples encountered a lake storm that threatened their lives, they called out to him, frantically accusing him of not caring what happened to them. Jesus, who modeled his lack of anxiety by sleeping through much of the mayhem, spoke an authoritative word of “peace” to the elements and brought calm. And who can forget his words of assurance on another occasion in John 14: “Do not let your hearts be troubled…Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.”
I am convinced that we can learn to be a non-anxious presence by reflecting on the promises of Jesus and applying them to our lives. Consequently, this is how we become a blessing to others by our non-anxious presence. Sharing the truth that Jesus can calm the waters of a storm in our lives. His promises in the gospel and more will help all of us to experience his presence and be less anxious presence in the midst of what we are experiencing today and everyday.
The coup in Burma last week was shocking and yet it was not surprising to those who have experienced the violence of the Burmese Army over the course of many years. All of our friends in the Karen/Chin/Burmese Community are here in the US because they were forced out of their homes in Burma by the Burmese government. For them, this past week has been traumatizing and grief filled. A member of our Karen Community in Vermont shared the attached letter which was written in the last week by a 21 year old woman. (Her photo is above.) The letter shares what life has been like in Burma. It contains disturbing images.
The Burmese people have begun protesting the Military occupation, demanding that their democratically elected officials be released from arrest and that their government be returned to power. At first the military was relatively restrained in its response, most likely because the eyes of the world are upon them. Yesterday live bullets were used against the peaceful protesters. We must keep attention on what is happening there.
As a church community, let us commit to holding Burma in our prayers and let us reach out to our elected officials asking them to continue their call for the restoration of the democratically elected government.
May God protect all those in danger.
Dear Church leaders,
The crises of 2020 have accelerated the need for churches to "future-fit" for our new world. You and your team need a planning retreat where you can craft a strategy to take your congregation into the future. Future Church Summit brings futurists and missional practitioners alongside your team to chart a course for the road ahead. This season has left us with many uncertainties. When can our churches safely gather? How do we live in both a virtual and a physical congregation? How can we stay engaged with our people? Yet, one thing we can be certain of - the future of our congregations doesn’t look like the past. The good news is that amidst this crisis, there is great opportunity. Join us for the Future Church Summit and plan a future-focused strategy for the coming year and beyond. Online February 26-27.
Friday Evening, 7pm
Better Days Ahead: A Thriving Mission in a Polarized, Post-Corona, Hyper-Connected World
Minefields and Goldmines:
What to Anticipate in the New World
Saturday Morning, 9am
The Plans I Have for You: Why Your Church's Destiny Lies in its History
Church has Left the Building:
Re-Vitalizing Congregations from the Outside-In
Saturday Afternoon, 12:50pm
A New Kind of Local Church: How Experimental Communities and Established Liturgies can Renew the Local Congregation
Reclaiming the Spirit: The Power to Become the Church of Tomorrow Today
If you are interested in attending, please contact Ron Bouthillette at firstname.lastname@example.org
LifeTree is sponsoring this event for ABCVNH and has purchased a team ticket,
For more information, see https://freshexpressionsus.org/futurechurchsummit
Hope you can join us,
Yours in Christ,
Associate Executive Minister of Discipleship and Evangelism (ABCVNH)
Dean of Lifetree School of Ministry
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