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December 2018 Volume 29, No. 8



The 2018 Christmas Eve Offering at National UMC:

Reaching Out Across Our City By Anita Seline, Serving Pillar Co-Chair ____________________________

Advent & Christmas Worship at National UMC MM: Metropolitan Memorial campus W: Wesley campus

The Voices of Christmas Sunday, December 16: Advent III

MM services at 9:00 and 11:00 AM The Voices of Christmas: Mary W service at 11:00 AM Christmas Pageant presented by Wesley’s Youth

Friday, December 21: Longest Night Service W service at 7:30 PM

Sunday, December 23: Advent IV

MM services at 9:00 and 11:00 AM The Voices of Christmas: Joseph W service at 11:00 AM Advent Through Spirituals: Somebody’s Knocking at Your Door Eve of the Eve Service MM service at 6:30 PM The Christmas Story, Carol Sing, and Candlelight Communion Continued on next page . . .

This year the Christmas Eve offering at National United Methodist Church will be used to provide financial stability to our Campus Kitchen food recovery and meal preparation project – enabling it to maintain and potentially expand its outreach across our city to areas where a large number of our brothers and sisters experience significant food insecurity. Over the years our Campus Kitchen has expanded from acquiring food on an ad hoc basis and providing a once-a-month meal for 50 at a nearby retirement facility to now on a several days-a-week, every week basis recovering from grocery stores, schools, and businesses hundreds of pounds of food that would otherwise be thrown out – and turning it into hundreds of meals that are distributed through feeding programs housed in United Methodist churches in the eastern portion of our city and through the Salvation Army’s Grate Patrol project that provides meals to those living on the streets (and heat grates) of our city. Routinely we are now providing over 4,000 meals each month. The expansion and success of our Campus Kitchen project has been made possible by the hard work of volunteers from our congregation, our surrounding community, and students from universities within our city. At the same time, that same expansion and success has required us to acquire resources that come with financial obligations. We operate out of a commercial grade kitchen housed within our St. Luke’s Mission Center that has equipment that needs to be maintained. We regularly need to purchase supplies and non-perishable food items that are not normally donated. We have hired a full-time professional chef. We have hired a part-time driver who uses a dedicated church van to make the bulk of our food recovery and meal delivery runs. Through the years our Campus Kitchen project has received meaningful financial support from our church. But this has largely been made possible by redirecting funds that were originally budgeted for other purposes. With the expansion of our project that pattern of funding is being strained and it is hoped that an abundant Christmas Eve offering will provide an element of financial stability that will help ensure the continued success of this important ministry – a ministry that reaches out beyond our walls and into parts of our city where there is profound need.

Advent & Christmas Worship Services Continued from front page Monday, December 24: Christmas Eve

MM Service at 5:00 PM Family Christmas Eve Service with Pageant W service at 7:00 PM Christmas Eve Service MM service at 7:30 PM Candlelight Communion – The Voices of Christmas: The Child MM at 10:30 PM Music Interlude MM service at 11:00 PM Candlelight Festival of the Holy Nativity – The Voices of Christmas: The Child

Sunday, December 30

MM single service at 10:00 AM The Voices of Christmas: The Shepherds W Kwanzaa service at 11:00 AM Celebration of “NIA” (purpose)

Sunday, January 6: Epiphany Sunday

MM services at 9:00 and 11:00 AM

The Voices of Christmas: The Magi Reception after each service in honor of Susan Staines’ retirement W service at 11:00 AM

Advent Contemplative Group

All Sundays in December, 10:00 AM, Metropolitan Memorial’s Room 106. Take a break from the hustle and bustle of the season. Join us for prayer, meditation, and quiet contemplation of scripture as we prepare for the coming of Christ. Led by Mary Jo Marchant.

NUMC’s Gratitude Trees

I am grateful for. . . During the month of November, the Metropolitan Memorial and Wesley campuses provided an opportunity for members of the NUMC family to express what they are grateful for. Following is a sampling of some of the “leaves” that were pinned to the trees: the music my extended church family the friendship of our members my family God the giving spirit of others children, Godly Play, and community service hands of friendship reaching out a place of quiet thought Sunday School and Food for Thought learning opportunities MYF our efforts in feeding the hungry our efforts in teaching the love of God the presence of Christ in our daily lives new friends our amusing, awesome wonderful United Methodist Women thoughtful and thought-provoking sermons the grape patrol the welcoming Bible study friends Youth teachers the sense of community our homeless ministry such a supportive and genuinely loving community NUMC’s commitment to social justice Catherine’s dinners! church name tags love and acceptance for all Asylum Seekers Assistance Project (ASAP) Rafael for Pastor Mike, leading us during a time of transition, planting seeds for fruit that he will not be able to partake. That is selfless service. the Arts our church staff the Bazaar and the Book Sale the church’s commitment to others & social justice

Nursery School News We are always busy at Metropolitan Nursery School. In November we hosted many events, including a parenting course on Mindfulness with Dr. Steve Silvestro, a local pediatrician and host of The Child Repair Guide podcast. For our presentation, Dr. Steve talked about mindfulness: being present in the moment. He spoke about practicing mindfulness techniques to grow your brain’s ability to find that place of calm when you most need it, which, he noted, is often for parents dealing regularly with the many joys and struggles of life with young children. He also talked about how helpful it can be to start building this skill with your children. Like good musclememory, the earlier we begin the practice, the more skilled we can become. Now we find ourselves in the transition from a season of thanks and sharing into a period of hopeful waiting. The Advent season can almost be felt as you walk through our classrooms the next several weeks. Few adults can experience hopeful waiting with the same level of excitement and anticipation as preschoolers. December to January is a season filled with celebrations from many cultures and they focus on miracles, beginnings, light, joy, family, and faith. During this busy holiday season, please remember to take time to be mindful of the reasons we are celebrating together and the gifts we have in life. I wish you and your families a joyful holiday season. Warmly,


Bring in the Books!

Collection for the United Methodist Women’s Book & Bake Sale starts now. Please drop off your donations of used books, CDs, record albums, and DVDs, to the UMW closet at the end of the Vestry hallway at the Metropolitan Memorial campus. No VHS tapes, no cassette tapes, no travel guides older than 2013. We are starting our collection period early this year with the hopes of building a larger inventory for the sale. Please tell your neighbors and friends, we are accepting their donations too! The Book & Bake Sale is March 1-2-3, 2019, with the book drive (drive into the parking lot with your donations and volunteers will unload your car) on February 23 & 24. Thanks in advance for packing up your donations in small boxes so that they can be easily lifted and stored. Contact Anita Seline at or Martha Mizroch at with your questions.

Conversation Circles at Carlos Rosario School Over the past 40 plus years, the Carlos Rosario School has transformed the lives of tens of thousands of immigrants within DC by investing in and supporting their journey to achieve the American Dream. The students at Carlos Rosario are adults who are mostly recent immigrants to the US. They want to become fully contributing members of our city. They want to be able to be literate, contributing employees. They want to give back to their community. They want to be able to communicate effectively if they need to take their children to the hospital or meet with their children’s teachers at school. One way that we at National United Methodist Church can support this effort is by participating in the Carlos Rosario Conversation Circles project held at their 1100 Harvard Street, NW, campus. On Wednesdays or Saturdays volunteers meet with small groups of adult students to practice speaking English. Using materials provided by the school they engage in activities that lead to smiles, laughs, and a profound sense of achievement. Recently, volunteers have worked with students from China, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Italy. If you want to know more, contact Kent Weaver at

Have you seen a new face in the choir? by Melissa Chávez

Prayer Shawl Ministry

Third Sunday of each month at 12:15 PM

The group is NOT meeting in December. If you are interested in joining, please contact Barbara Tate, at

Metropolitan Book Club Third Monday of each month at 7:30 PM Next meeting: January 21, 2019 Metropolitan Memorial’s Parlor All readers are invited for a discussion of current fiction and non-fiction. The next selection up for discussion is river of Doubt, by Candace Millard. For more information, please contact Suzanne Clewell at, or Joan Topalian at

We welcome Eduardo Castro, Peruvian bass baritone, into the position of section leader in the Chancel Choir. Eduardo has performed in companies such as The Washington National Opera, The Baltimore Opera, and The Virginia Opera. He studied voice in Rome, Italy, and at the University of Oklahoma, where he received his degree in musical studies in Vocal Performance. There he studied voice under the world renown baritone, Kim Josephson. Because of his vocal versatility and great interpretation skills, Eduardo has been able to perform leading roles such as Colline in La Boheme, Leporello in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Don Alfonso in Cosi fan Tutte, and Dr. Dulcamara in Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’Amore. He performed – with great success – the role of Figaro from Le Nozze di Figaro in Teatro Municipal of Lima, Peru.

Adult Sunday School Metropolitan Memorial Campus 10:05-10:55 AM

In the Biblical Sense

Metropolitan Memorial’s Library

Where do you turn in the Bible for inspiration? We are exploring a number of familiar (and perhaps not so familiar) passages from the Bible. Visitors are encouraged to join us. For more information, contact Bob Olson at

Questions of Faith

Metropolitan Memorial’s Conference Room

This group addresses issues of personal faith development and current trends in Christian thought, as well as social and ethical issues in light of the Christian faith. We are currently discussing “Thinking About Religion and Violence.” For more information, contact Diane Moody at

Science and Religion Metropolitan Memorial’s Parlor

This class involves vigorous dialogue on matters of faith and contemporary thought. For more information, contact Maynard Moore at

Inspired Parenting Metropolitan Memorial’s Great Hall

Open to parents with children of all ages, this class is a safe space to share the week's parenting challenges and joys. It is a great place to find advice, feel affirmed, and become connected with other parents in our church community. We meet at a corner table during coffee hour, and everyone is welcome! For more information, contact Elizabeth Burks at

Celebrating the Arrival of the Christ Child

The Christmas season is a time of joy and peace. Honor your family and friends with a donation toward the flowers and greens that wrap the Sanctuary, building, and halls of the church in living colors of the season. The greens and flowers in the church are totally supported by your contributions. Poinsettias are available for a donation of $25. (Any donation amount is welcome.) All donations will be recognized in the service bulletins on Sunday, December 23. (Plants may be taken after the 11:00 PM service on Christmas Eve.) The deadline for recognition in the bulletins is Tuesday, December 18.

A gift for Baby Jesus: Spices for Campus Kitchen DC In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, wise women and men are asked to bring a bottle (or two) of spices to be donated to Campus Kitchen this holiday season. The spices will help Chef Anthony prepare delicious meals for the ministry's 4,000 monthly meal recipients. Find collection baskets in the Wesley sanctuary and Metropolitan Memorial’s welcome center. Chef specifically needs garlic powder, onion powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg, but all spices are welcome! Spices will be collected through Epiphany Sunday, January 6.

Can You Provide a Holiday Gift to a Formerly Homeless Child? For the past several years, the National UMC community has generously responded to Friendship Place’s appeal to provide holiday gifts to children in their Neighbors First permanent supportive housing program. These families have very low-incomes, an average of $720 monthly, so your support is greatly appreciated. You can select a child or a family from Friendship Place’s Adopt-a-Family sign up at You are welcome to select a child or sponsor an entire family. For the families listed, you can sign up for just one of the children. And it is only necessary to provide 1 or 2 items per child, even when multiple gift suggestions are listed. Please note that you are a NUMC member when you complete the sign up. You can deliver your gifts – wrapped or unwrapped – to the Metropolitan Memorial office on Sunday, December 16. Please use a post-it note or something else that can later be removed to list the name and number of the gift recipient. Or you can deliver your gifts directly to Friendship Place as instructed on Sign Up Genius. If you have any questions, please contact Ann Michel, at

YWE Attends Big Church Night Out In November, NUMC’s Youth Worship Ensemble attend “Big Church Night Out” in Williamsport, Maryland, which featured artists such as David Crowder, Jordan Feliz, and Sarah Reeves. YWE enjoyed it so much that they are planning another concert outing this coming summer. Want to be part of the fun? We rehearse every Sunday at the Metropolitan Memorial campus at 11:00 AM, in the Choir Room. National UMC choir members joined their voices together with choirs from across the region on Saturday, December 2nd at Wolf Trap’s Filene Center for the Annual Holiday Sing-a-Long.

Gotta Gun? Wanna Make a Garden Tool? MICAH 4:3 RSV The Gun Violence Prevention (GVP) team at NUMC seeks a firearm to disassemble and then send to Raw Tools in Colorado, where the parts will be melted down and converted into a garden tool. Check out In this season of seeking Peace on Earth let us "...beat [our] swords into plowshares and [our] spears into pruning hooks..." If you have questions or are interested in further information, please contact Lois Weaver at

The Way Forward

LAST CHANCE! Please contact Ellen Bachman ( if you want to attend the called General Conference in St. Louis, February 23-26, 2019 as a witness and advocate for LGBTQ justice in the United Methodist Church. OR, the same applies if you have hotel credits or frequent flyer miles to contribute to assist those who would like to represent National UMC at GC 2019 with the expenses. Please join United Methodists from around the world in “Praying Our Way Forward” as we prepare for the called General Conference 2019. Everyone is encouraged to stop and pray from 2:23 to 2:26 daily (morning or afternoon) in recognition of the dates the General Conference will meet, February 23-26, 2019.

Shelter Meals Needed Hunger and homelessness don’t take a break during the holiday season. Both of our transitional housing shelters (Metropolitan House, for 3 women, and St. Luke’s House, for 6 men) are at full capacity. We are in particular need of weekend volunteer meals for St. Luke’s House. SLH is located on the lower level of our St. Luke’s Mission Center (at the bottom of the stairs leading down from the back corner of the parking lot). St. Luke’s Mission Center is located a block off the intersection of Wisconsin Avene and Calvert Street, NW, and across the street from the Guy Mason Recreation Center. Sign up information can be found on our SignUpGenius website: On the weekends, there is usually a resident at SLH in the late afternoon, so delivering a meal is often as simple as knocking on the shelter door and handing the meal to the resident. If no one is on site, there is a cooler next to the shelter door in which meals can be placed. Most volunteers provide their meals in disposable containers so they don’t need to retrieve them later. SLH is equipped with a complete kitchen, so the residents can re-heat meals in the oven if needed.

Dear Metropolitan Memorial Community Thank you all for helping make November’s Blood Drive a huge success! We were so busy that unfortunately, we had to turn away a few unscheduled donors. All 5 beds stayed busy well into the evening. We are grateful to ALL our donors, the Red Cross staff, and the many volunteers on site (and those who baked cookies). I would like to share the following email I received from the Red Cross: “Thank you, Kristen and the Metropolitan Nursery School & National United Methodist Church Washington DC for a hosting the drive yesterday. I also extend my heartfelt thanks to Molly Broder and her daughter for allowing the American Red Cross to be a part of Christian’s wish to help support those in need. Although the day was about a life lost so many will be saved because of his wish. We collected 44 units of blood and red cells surpassing the goal by 13 units! Because 3 people in need can be helped for every unit collected, your drive will enable our community hospitals and trauma centers to impact the lives of 132 patients and for that you and your donors should be proud! Thank you for your partnership. I hope we will be able to host another drive with you in the New Year!” Thank you so much! Carolyn Montrose Administrator Metropolitan Nursery School

Food for Thought On hiatus until January 9, 2019

Community Dinner In Metropolitan Memorial’s Vestry Wednesday evenings, 6:00-7:00 PM $8 per person, students pay what you can


Locations to be announced each Wednesday evening, 7:00-8:30 PM

January is for looking forward . . . A 21st Century Church Have you ever heard people express concern about decline in the church? What about those that say we’re in a time of crisis? Is church out of step with the times? Is a smaller church inevitable or is there something we can do? Over three sessions, Patrick Landau, Director of Youth and Young Adults, will be exploring both the macro trends in church decline in the US and how that connects here at National UMC. Combining current research with spiritual reflection, he will lead a three week group to process what is happening in churches and to share the good news that churches, National included, can thrive in the 21st century.

January 9: What is Happening? A reflection and study of decline in churches, why there’s no need to panic, and where hope exists for our congregation.

January 16: Why church? A reflection on rediscovering the purpose of church and how we might live into God’s call as a community.

January 23: New Roads Ahead A reflection on using new approaches to share the gospel and Wesleyan tradition in our ever-changing world.

January 30

Moving Forward Becky Posey Williams, Senior Director for Sexual Ethics and Advocacy for the United Methodist Commission on the Status and Role of Women, and consultant with JustPeace, will lead us in a conversation focused on our future together as faithful children of God.

Jazz at Wesley:

Jazzy Christmas with Bobby Felder & Friends Saturday, December 15, 2018, 6:30-8:30 PM Wesley’s Fellowship Hall General Admission Tickets: $10 Adults; $7 Seniors; $5 Students; FREE for 12 and under

2019 National UMC Women’s Retreat: Daily Grace Mindfulness involves building the skills of attention, observing, allowing, letting go, being open, compassionate, resonating with others, hearing, and discerning. Our faith – as expressed in the teachings and examples of Jesus Christ – tells us what we are to be: loving, generous, disciplined, committed, inclusive, compassionate, and serving. Mindfulness trains us in the mindsets and skills that help us to become these qualities. Join us as we explore how mindfulness can help create space in our lives for a deeper, more purposeful connection with God. NUMC’s annual women’s retreat will be held February 1-3, 2019, at the lovely PriestField Pastoral Center in Kearneysville, West Virginia. Along with interactive sessions and joyful fellowship, time will be set aside for self-directed activities, quiet contemplation, and spirit-filled worship. The workshop leader is Laurie J. Cameron, author of The Mindful Day: Practical Ways to Find Focus Calm, and Joy from Morning to Evening. Although this retreat is sponsored by the UMW, it is open to all women in the NUMC community. Registration forms are available in the main office at Metropolitan Memorial. For more information, contact Suzanne Vieth at (202) 744-7556 or

Welcome Walks Resume The Sharing Team is bringing back “Welcome Walks” as a way of helping newcomers (as well as those who have been around a while) get familiar with Metropolitan Memorial’s church building and learn about activities and events that take place in the church. Welcome Walks will take place the second Sunday of each month at the conclusion of each service. Look for a guide standing next to the pulpit. Upcoming Welcome Walk dates are Sunday, January 13, and Sunday, February 10. The team is also looking for people will to serve as walk leaders. All that is required is a love of the church and an eagerness to connect with others. Training on the Walk itinerary is provided. Contact Ann Michel at

National United Methodist Church 3401 Nebraska Avenue, NW | Washington, DC 20016 202.363.4900 For a complete listing of our ministerial and administrative staff, please visit our web site: NUMC consists of three campuses: 1: Metropolitan Memorial Campus 3401 Nebraska Avenue, NW | Washington, DC 20016 Location of Metro House Shelter

2: Wesley Campus 5312 Connecticut Avenue, NW | Washington, DC 20015

3: St. Luke’s Mission Center 3655 Calvert Street, NW | Washington, DC 20007 Location of St. Luke’s House Shelter, Campus Kitchen of DC, and Shalom Place Retreat Center

December 2018 Messenger  
December 2018 Messenger