COLD-WEATHER SHELTER OPENING this WEEKEND: Seeking volunteers for day and night shifts

DUE to dangerous temperatures this weekend, in collaboration with the Way Station, White Horse Addiction Center, and other agencies,  Nativity Lutheran Church is opening its Fellowship Hall over the weekend as a cold-weather shelter. This shelter will serve all of Mt Washington Valley.    WEEKEND: From Friday afternoon –  Monday evening, Nativity Lutheran Church’s lower hall will be used as an emergency warming shelter. It will be open day and night over the weekend.If you are interested in helping out as a volunteer, please let REV GAIL DOKTOR know by responding to this message: CALL or TEXT Gail’s cell: 978.273.0308.Indicate when you might be available to volunteer and provide contact info (full name, email, and phone number to expedite contact and scheduling). 

An alert has been sent to emergency responders and agencies serving vulnerable populations, so people at-risk have the option to seek shelter in North Conway at the Nativity Lutheran Church. Although the Way Station, White Horse, Tri-County Cap, and Carroll County’s designated emergency response team cannot predict how many people may need they facility, they have direct knowledge of some clients who could benefit from having a place.    HOW YOU CAN HELP: 

  • If you are a person who is vaccinated, healthy, and to whom COVID poses a low risk, we invite you to be a support volunteer. 

    Each shift (mornings/afternoons/overnights) will have two types of volunteers: supervisors who have experience working with homeless people (hese people work with the agencies that are cooperating to open the shelter). Needed: support volunteers the position we are inviting you to consider filling.  

    Support volunteers will help run things. This includes being the person to hand out coffee and food (we do not want lots of people touching the coffee pot or serving utensils), making sure that the bathrooms get cleaned with regularity, keeping an eye open for things that need to happen.
  • Meals are being provided by volunteers from local churches, including Jackson Community Church. 
  • Cots, toiletries, etc, are coming from emergency response supplies and inventories in place from local agencies.   

Nativity Lutheran reminds us: With the Omicron variant running rampant, opening this shelter is a fairly risky thing to do. We will try to mitigate that risk, but even so, being a support volunteer will be hazardous. If you hope to volunteer, please allow for this increased risk by using extra caution in the days after your shift.   If you are interested in helping out as a volunteer, please let REV GAIL DOKTOR by phone: CALL or TEXT Gail’s cell number (not the church’s land line). Or email with SHELTER VOLUNTEER in subject line. Indicate when you might be available to volunteer and provide contact info (full name, email, and phone number to expedite contact and scheduling).    We are grateful to be a part of a community that cares enough to suggest opening such a shelter and quickly organizing its activities. 

#GIVING TUESDAY: Reminder about the church’s charitable partners.

INTERNATIONAL CAUSES which our faith community supports through giving or volunteering:

  • Heifer International cards will be available inside the church’s front entrance by Wednesday afternoon., Dec 1 You may take a card and make a donation (cash or check). Drop it in the church model inside the front doors, which we’re using to collect these funds. Learn more about Heifer International.
  • Zimbabwe cards will be available in the front of the church by Wednesday afternoon, Dec 1. These support partner faith communities and communal projects through the NH-Zimbabwe Ukama Partnership, including sister churches like JCC’s partner: Chikanga Church, City of Mutare, Zimbabwe. You may take a card and make a donation (cash or check). Drop it in the church model inside the front doors, which we’re using to collect these funds. or make an online donation: Representatives from regions — including our churches — have traveled back and forth to establish strong ties between the partner faith communities.
  • Honduras Hope is a NH-based partnership with communities in Honduras. Church member Meg Phillips has traveled there several times to provide direct volunteer service in the communities and can answer your questions! Link to site for giving:
  • Legado Initiaitve is an international charitable foundation managed by a local Jackson resident. Madja Burhardt. They use a radical approach for securing THRIVING FUTURES for both people and the wild places they call home. To learn more and support this organization:

LOCAL CAUSES the church supports financially and/or through volunteering. We respond to many local partners, so may not have included all such missions and initiatives here. If you’re interested in learning more about our Missions team, contact the church:

Health and wellbeing of our community from many angles:

  • Way Station serves the homeless and housing-insecure residents of Mt Washington Valley. Learn more and/or donate:  Link to donate: 
  • Starting Point provides support and safety for individuals and families experiencing domestic violence. Learn more and/or donate:
  • End 68 Hours of Hunger (Conway branch) sends hundreds of backpacks filled with food home every weekend  in the SAU9 school district for food-insecure students. Learn more and/or donate:
  • MWV Habitat for Humanity builds homes for local families. Learn more or donate:
  • White Horse Addiction Center works in North Conway and Ossippee. Learn more and/or donate:
  • Mt Washington Valley Supports Recovery works in North Conway and Mt Washington Valley to support recover. Learn more and/or donate:
  • White Mountain Community Health provides sliding scale of medical services for the valley so that all people may access medical and dental care. Learn more and/or donate:
  • Gibson Center provides essential services to the valley’s senior population, including Meals on Wheels, adult ed classes, health and wellbeing support and many other services. Hint: they have a thrift shop with excellent bargains! Link to learn more and/or donate:
  • Northern Health & Human Services provides essential, affordable mental health care and counseling to clients in the Mt Washington Valley and other regions of NH. Learn more and/or donate:
  • Jen’s Friends provides support for local cancer families. Learn more and/or donate:
  • North Country Cares supports projects such as the Revolving Closet which is a free clothing boutique for preteens and teens. Learn more and/or donate:
  • Conway Humane Society provides rescue, fostering and adoption for pets in Mt Washington Valley. Lean more and/or donate:
  • Angels & Elves provides Christmas assistance (brand new warm coats, boots, clothes, toys, etc.) to underserved children in MWV, Fryeburg & Brownfield. To apply for Christmas assistance email for an application link thru Dec 5. Note: The church is supporting two families this season. All gift tags have been claimed, but you can contact Linda Hastings by email if you want a gift assignment (all gifts and tags must be returned by Sun, Dec 5 at noon) for one of these two families or make a cash contribution to the gift requests they have made by dropping a check or cash (payable to JCC and designated to Angels & Elves on subject line) in the church model in front entrance way.

Culture, Education and Environment:

  • Mountaintop Music provides music education and performances throughout the valley. Learn more and/or donate (or join):
  • Jackson XC Ski Touring Foundation: This foundation maintains trails for XC skiing in Jackson, offers classes, provides affordable youth education and access for snow shoeing and XC skiing, and works with local nonprofits and landowners on conservation initiatives. Learn more and/or donate (or join):
  • Tin Mountain Conservation Center is a local partner in environmental education and preservation. They have sites in Jackson and Albany, offer programs regionally and in our classes and community centers, as well as on their own sites. Learn more and/or donate (or join):
  • Upper Saco Valley Land Trust is preserving land throughout the region, including many local sites. Learn more and/or make a donation (or join):
  • Mt Washington Valley Observatory is a local nonprofit focused on environmental and weather-based science
  • Appalachian Mountain Club is integral to the culture and conservation of the White Mountains. Learn more:
  • Believe in Books works on literacy and performing arts in the valley and conserves land along the Saco:
  • Horton Center is the nearby UCC summer camp based on Pine Mountain and is the heart of NH outdoor experiences and ministries within the United Church of Christ’s NH Conference. Learn more and/or donate:
  • Star Island is a UU and UCC-owned island off the coast of NH that promotes creative, cultural and spiritual engagement with people and the environment through camps and conferences. Learn more:
  • Bartlett Historical Society is preserving the local history of their town and region. To support them and learn more:
  • Jackson Historical Society preserves the artistical and historical heritage of Jackson and is building a significant collection of local artists from across several eras. To learn more and support them:
  • Public Libraries are a significant public resource. If you wish to volunteer or donate:


UCC (United Church of Christ) Is Partnering with Global Ministries, Church World Service and the ACT Alliiance   Jackson Community Church is sending urgently-requested funds from our Mission budget, held aside for disaster relief, as a first-wave donation to the UCC’s Haiti Appeal. As noted above, the UCC (United Church of Christ) is working with Global Ministries, Church World Service, and the ACT Alliance among other partners.

For anyone wishing to make the most direct impact, we advise adding your financial contribution to this Haiti Appeal, which will be put to work with organizations who have volunteers and resources on the ground in Haiti. You can make a direct donation from the link below. Note that our church is gathering all individual contributions that are submitted this week into one large additional donation to be sent in after this weekend. We suggest that you make out a check to Jackson Community CHurch with the subject line HAITI. All contributions will be sent together as followup addition to our  church’s first response to the Haiti Appeal.

For more information, visit this line:  

Highlights from the UCC Haiti Appeal:

The UCC is working with Global Ministries, Church World Service and the ACT Alliance among other partners, all of which are currently assessing the situation for damages and needs. 

… UCC Global H.O.P.E. team leader Joshua Baird was in touch with the partner networks on August 16 and said that the ACT Alliance reports that more than 60 percent of the people of Haiti have been impacted by the disaster. Both the ACT Alliance and Church World Service have spoken about “significant infrastructure challenges,” with road closures due to civil unrest compounded by earthquake damage.  

… Immediate needs include water, due to the corruption of water tanks, and first aid. They note that there are not enough hospital beds in existing, structurally safe facilities. “People are being treated in hospital yards – or dying there,” according to Global Ministries’ bilateral partners CONASPEH (The National Spiritual Council of Haitian Churches) and House of Hope, Baird said.

Other challenges facing Haitians include COVID-19. Vaccination of health care workers and people over 65 only got started in early August. There’s also the political and social disruption following the assassination of the country’s president in July.

Opening worship for the national Synod gathering of the UCC (United Church of Christ)

SYNOD Begins Today: WORSHIP featuring Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr.
You can view it as a Facebook event or on Youtube live event at 5pm EST today, Sunday, July 11.
Live chat is disabled for this event, but you can participate:

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr
Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr.’s history in the United Church of Christ and the Civil Rights Movement go back years and reflect a legacy of justice orientation and activism. Chavis was a part of the Wilmington 10, a group of civil rights activists who were wrongly convicted of arson and conspiracy in 1972 after deadly racial conflicts in 1971. Chavis, a staffer with the UCC’s Commission for Racial Justice (CRJ), received a 34-year sentence. CRJ came to their defense, and the 1977 General Synod meeting in Washington, D.C. held a march outside the White House for their release. Their sentences were commuted in 1978, their convictions overturned in 1980, and in 2013, the state’s governor pardoned them. Chavis was a youth organizer in North Carolina for Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., served as Executive Director of CRJ from 1985 to 1993, headed the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People from 1993 to 1994, served as national director of 1995 Million Man March in D.C., co-founded the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network, and now leads the National Newspaper Publishers Association. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina and Duke Divinity School and holds a D.Min. degree from Howard University. Originally published in 1983, Chavis’ Psalms from Prison is available for pre-order at The Pilgrim Press:

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