Upcoming Events & Opportunities || September 15. 2021

Midweek Discussion w/ Pastor Jacob

Join Pastor Jacob on Wednesday at 7pm as we discuss upcoming readings and themes for Sunday worship.  This group meets in-person in the vestry and virtually.

Virtual participants can  join the gathering by going to https://meet.google.com/txp-ndfa-ivu) or by calling 1-440-467-1448, the PIN is 220 679 745#.


Community Cookout

Join the Franklin United Methodist Church for a FREE Community Cookout on September 25 from 5:30-7pm.  Burgers, hotdogs, chips, and lemonade will be provided.  Bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit in the garden and grassy lot behind the church and enjoy the company of your neighbors.


Harvest Festival

Franklin United Methodist Church and its ministry partners, Tri-Valley Inc. (Meals on Wheels) and Aprende Spanish Immersion will have a booth at this year’s Harvest Festival on October 2.  Volunteers are needed to setup, staff, and teardown the booth.  We need at least two persons for three different two hour shifts (11:30a-1:30p, 1:30-3:30p, and 3:30-5:30p).  If you would like to help, please contact Pastor Jacob (jacob@franklinumc.org).


Book Club

The Book Club meets monthly on the second Monday of the month at 7pm. The Book Club will meet (virtually) on October 11 at 7pm. We will be reading The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides . 


Trunk or Treat

Franklin United Methodist Church is organizing a Trunk or Treat for Saturday, October 30 from 4-6p.  We need volunteers to decorate their trunks and handout candy.  We also need volunteers to help setup, teardown, and grill “hallo-weiners.”  If you would like to help, please contact Pastor Jacob (jacob@franklinumc.org).

In Support of COVID-19 Vaccination: A Statement by the Franklin Interfaith Council

“Love your neighbor as yourself” is a key principle of the religions we practice.  We believe it’s what God calls us to do.  But while it’s an easy phrase to remember and recite, it can be challenging to actually live it out in our daily lives. 

We are in the middle of a pandemic.  To state the obvious, it has been a stressful, scary, exhausting, grief-filled year and a half, and it’s not over yet.  The advent of the Delta variant is ramping things up again.  In the middle of our own stress, can we stop to consider what our neighbors might need from us?  How might we, practically, treat them with love?

One way to answer that question: 
Please get the Covid 19 vaccine!     (if you are eligible)

Here are some reasons we would like everyone who is eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine:

  • It drastically reduces the possibility of you contracting the virus and spreading it to others.
  • Even if a vaccinated person does get a breakthrough infection, they get a MUCH milder case, as the vaccine is highly effective at preventing hospitalization and death.  
  • Since vaccinated people are less likely to contract the virus and pass it on, it protects the people around them, particularly children and the immunocompromised who are not eligible for the vaccine. 
  • More vaccinated people means fewer hosts for the virus, thus less virus present in the community.
  • Fewer people infected with COVID means fewer people dying, fewer people hospitalized, and therefore less risk for healthcare workers, and fewer people missing work and school.
  • Since the vast majority of people hospitalized with COVID are unvaccinated, if everyone chose to get vaccinated, that would free up ICU’s, doctors, and nurses to treat people with other conditions.

If you are fearful about the vaccine, talk with your doctor.  Read up on the science behind the vaccine on the websites of the Centers for Disease Control (cdc.gov), the World Health Organization (who.int), Massachusetts Department of Health (mass.gov/covid-19-updates-and-information), or other local governments.  We hope that everyone will use their God-given powers of reason, discernment, and understanding to make an informed decision to get vaccinated and care for their neighbors as well as themselves. 

Signed by the following Franklin Interfaith Council representatives:   

Rabbi Tom Alpert, Temple Etz Chaim
Susan Borchard, Franklin Federated Church
Rev. Eric Cherry, Minister, First Universalist Society in Franklin
Mary Diehl, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
The Rev. Maggie Geller, Deacon, St. John’s Episcopal Church
Rev. Dr. Jacob W. Juncker, Pastor, Franklin United Methodist Church
Rev. Brian Manning, Pastor, Saint Mary Parish
The Rev. Kathy McAdams, Rector, St. John’s Episcopal Church
Rev. Dr. Marlayna Schmidt, Interim Pastor, Franklin Federated Church


For those who may be interested in knowing more about the ways The United Methodist Church is providing care and support through the COVID-19 pandemic. Check out the video below to learn more.

If you would like to contribute to UMCOR’s COVID-19 Response Fund, click here.

Upcoming Events & Opportunities || September 9, 2021

Midweek Discussion w/ Pastor Jacob

Join Pastor Jacob on Wednesday at 7pm as we discuss upcoming readings and themes for Sunday worship.  This group meets in-person in the vestry and virtually.

Virtual participants can  join the gathering by going to https://meet.google.com/txp-ndfa-ivu) or by calling 1-440-467-1448, the PIN is 220 679 745#.


Book Club

The Book Club meets monthly on the second Monday of the month at 7pm. The Book Club will meet (virtually) on September 13 at 7pm. We will be reading When We Believed in Mermaids by Barbara O’Neal. 


Community Cookout

Join the Franklin United Methodist Church for a FREE Community Cookout on September 25 from 5:30-7pm.  Burgers, hotdogs, chips, and lemonade will be provided.  Bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit in the garden and grassy lot behind the church and enjoy the company of your neighbors.


Harvest Festival

Franklin United Methodist Church and its ministry partners, Tri-Valley Inc. (Meals on Wheels) and Aprende Spanish Immersion will have a booth at this year’s Harvest Festival on October 2.  Volunteers are needed to setup, staff, and teardown the booth.  We need at least two persons for three different two hour shifts (11:30a-1:30p, 1:30-3:30p, and 3:30-5:30p).  If you would like to help, please contact Pastor Jacob (jacob@franklinumc.org).


Trunk or Treat

Franklin United Methodist Church is organizing a Trunk or Treat for Saturday, October 30 from 4-6p.  We need volunteers to decorate their trunks and handout candy.  We also need volunteers to help setup, teardown, and grill “hallo-weiners.”  If you would like to help, please contact Pastor Jacob (jacob@franklinumc.org).

Midweek Discussion (IMMEDIATE CHANGE)

Dear friends and members,

I misspoke on Sunday.  I need to move the midweek discussion to Wednesdays at 7pm beginning immediately (tonight!).  We will meet in-person at the church and in-person virtually.  The link and phone number to join virtually have not changed (https://meet.google.com/txp-ndfa-ivu or 1-440-467-1448, the PIN is 220 679 745#).

I apologize for any confusion this may cause and for the late notice.  I have sent this message three times as an email through the church database (around 11am, 2:20p, and 2:30p). The database is experiencing some issues sending emails. It has been reported and is being fixed.

If you have any questions, or you just want to chat, don’t hesitate to reach out. I hope you’ll consider making it to one of our midweek discussions, maybe even this evening!  We are beginning a new discussion series on the proposed new vision statement.  This week we are discussing the first clause of the statement: “we seek to be a community.”

If I don’t see you this evening at 7pm, I look forward to joining you in worship on Sunday at 10am.

Peace.
Pastor Jacob

Community Cookout || August 28, 2021

Join the Franklin United Methodist Church for a FREE Community Cookout on August 28 from 5:30-7pm.  Burgers, hotdogs, chips, and lemonade will be provided.  Bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit in the garden and grassy lot behind the church and enjoy the company of your neighbors.

In case of rain, this event will be cancelled.  All cancellation announcements will be posted to the church website (franklinumc.org) and to social media.

Mark your calendars for next cookout on September 25 from 5:30-7pm!

If you would like to help with or donate to these events, please contact Pastor Jacob (508-528-1092). This cookout is being funded through the church’s Mission Fund. If you would like to contribute to the Mission Fund, click here.

UPDATED COVID PROTOCOLS

Dear friends and members of Franklin United Methodist Church,

As I am sure you are all aware, the pandemic lingers on and positive cases of COVID-19 are on the rise.  The Delta variant is causing an end of summer spike in cases around the country including here in Franklin.  You can find the total positive cases and percent positivity for the last 14 days for the Town of Franklin along with occupied ICU beds in the MetroWest area and vaccination rates for Norfolk County below.

The shading on the above data follows our Metrics for Safer Gatherings.  We no longer follow these metrics, but they are a good point of reference.

On Sunday, the Church Council met and, among other things, discussed our on-going response to the pandemic.  In light of current trends, the Church Council voted unanimously to reinstate masking while inside the Franklin United Methodist Church.  Masks should be worn over the mouth and nose by all persons, vaccinated or not, at all indoor gatherings—worship, small groups, and work teams.  Except for this new masking protocol, all other protocols adopted at the last two Church Council meetings remain in effect (see here and here).  As an added precaution, we will cease weekly communion for the time being. 

In other, more exciting news from the Church Council meeting, the budget has been updated and the Personnel Committee will renew its search for a regular church musician.  I hope to begin scheduling in-person musicians to accompany worship beginning in September!  This will dramatically enhance our worship together.

If you have any questions about these decisions, or you just want to talk, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me directly.  Thank you for your continued support and understanding through these difficult times.  Be safe.  Get vaccinated (if you’re eligible).

I look forward to seeing you in worship—online or in-person—this Sunday at 10am.

Peace.
Pastor Jacob

‘Faith After Doubt’: A book discussion with the author, Brian D. McLaren

The bishop is pleased to welcome the book’s author, Brian D. McLaren, to the NEAC for a four-session online discussion of this book that Bishop Devadhar called “important and insightful.” 

In his address Bishop Devadhar said, “McLaren invites us to a future of hope. He invites us to transform our weariness into constructive collaborations with fellow Christians. He invites us to invest in the church of the future.” 

In Faith After Doubt, McLaren, a former pastor, postulates that questions of faith and doubt are not “the enemy of faith, but rather a portal to a more mature and fruitful kind of faith.” His model for faith development has four stages: Simplicity, Complexity, Perplexity, and Harmony. 

McLaren writes: “Some people tell me they never have doubts. Faith comes easy to them, they say, at least it has so far. But many, many, many of us do have doubts, and sometimes our doubts seem more powerful than our beliefs. … I promise you: there is faith after doubt, and life after doubt, and life with doubt. … wait until you see where doubt can lead you and what doubt can teach you.”   

About the series 

This series is for everyone – clergy and laity. We especially encourage pastors and church members to participate together.  

You will get the most out of these discussions if you have read or at least begun Faith After Doubt prior to the series start. But even if you haven’t, we anticipate rich and fruitful conversations and urge all NEAC members to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity. 

Over four sessions, McLaren will offer an overview of his book and examine the four stages with a specific focus each week. There will be time for questions as well as some small-group discussion.  

Each session takes place from 8-9 pm Mondays. The sessions will be recorded. 

  • Sept. 13, 2021 – Session One: An overview of Faith After Doubt  
  • Sept. 20, 2021 – Session Two: Spiritual life, a personal perspective 
  • Sept. 27, 2021 – Session Three: Liturgy and spiritual formation, a congregational perspective 
  • Oct. 4, 2021 – Session Four: Outreach and evangelism for congregations 

You are encouraged to bring your questions for Dr. McLaren, and he has prepared some questions/ prompts for you to consider and share during the discussions:  

  • Was there a sentence or paragraph from the book felt that especially meaningful to you personally? Why?  
  • Was there a sentence or paragraph from the book felt that especially meaningful to your congregation or our conference or denomination at this time? Why do you feel this is especially important to our Methodist family?   

You will receive additional prompts specific to each session with your registration confirmation. 

Registration 

Registration is open; use the button above. Space is limited, so you are encouraged to register as soon as possible. The deadline to register is Thursday, Sept. 9.  

We will have some time for breakout discussion in small groups. If you want to participate in those as a congregation, there is a place to indicate that preference on the registration form. 

If you do not have a group from your church attending, you will be assigned to a breakout group with other participants.  

Use the button above to register once for all four sessions. You will be sent a Zoom link that will remain the same throughout.  

For detailed information, dates and times, please click here.

**UPDATE** Aprende Spanish Immersion

Hola Aprende Friends!

We are getting ready for the new school year- and we would love to have your child learning Spanish with us! 

Not only has our Aprende team grown over the last year, but now we are so excited to bring our little Spanish Immersion school to Franklin starting in September! We love the ability to provide this valuable service to another local community.  

We want to keep our friends in-the-know so take a look at what Aprende’s offering for the fall!

For our Shrewsbury Program, hours will be:

*Toddler and Preschool program – Monday through Friday 8:30 AM to 12:30PM ; with extended hours available everyday 

*After school program – Monday, Wednesday and Friday 3:30PM to 5:30PM. 

For our Franklin Program, hours will be:

*Toddler and Preschool program- Monday through Friday 8:30AM to 12:30PM

*After school program-Tuesday and Thursday 3:30 to 5:30PM or Monday and Wednesday 3:30 to 5:30pm

Please contact us with any questions or if you’d like to set up a time to take a tour of either of our locations!

Muchas Gracias!

Karen Quintana
Founder and Director, Aprende Spanish Immersion

Tel: 508-974-8900
Cel: 857-251-9698

Facebook.com/AprendeSI
www.aprendespanishimmersion.com

UPDATED COVID PROTOCOLS

Dear friends and members of Franklin United Methodist Church,

This week, the Centers for Disease Control updated their COVID-19 protocols for schools. You can find the full guidance here. For K-12 schools the recommended distance for physical distancing was shortened to three (3) feet. It is important to note that this new guidance continues to recommend that unvaccinated persons (including all children under the age of 12) should remain masked when indoors.

In light of these changes to CDC guidance, the Church Council has voted to shorten the physical distancing standard to 3 ft in the sanctuary. This allows us to sit every other pew instead of every third pew. All other protocols adopted at the last Church Council meeting remain in effect. You can find the COVID protocols passed at the June 13 Church Council meeting here. If you have any questions about this update to our protocols, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

Thank you for your continued efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19, and for being a shining example of vigilance to our (including my!) children and all those who must continue wearing a mask and social distancing because they cannot yet receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

I look forward to seeing you in worship, online or in-person, this Sunday at 10am!

Peace.
Pastor Jacob

Community Cookout || July 24, 2021

Join the Franklin United Methodist Church for a FREE Community Cookout on July 24 from 5:30-7pm.  Burgers, hotdogs, chips, and a drink will be provided.  Bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit in the garden and grassy lot behind the church and enjoy the company of your neighbors.

In case of rain, this event will be cancelled.  All cancellation announcements will be posted to the church website (franklinumc.org) and to social media.

Mark your calendars for upcoming cookouts on August 28 & September 25 from 5:30-7pm!

If you would like to help with or donate to these events, please contact Pastor Jacob (508-528-1092). This cookout is being funded through the church’s Mission Fund. If you would like to contribute to the Mission Fund, click here.