Youth Programs: May & June

Family Church-at-home-together Continues! Here’s an update on current plans!

  • Young People’s Choir & Band begins Mondays, May 24, 4pm via Zoom.
    • Choir director & musician Billy Carleton will meet virtually with young people who want to participate in weekly music-making.
    • The goal will be to record songs every 4-6 weeks to share during worship.
    • Voices and instruments welcome.
    • At the first session, Billy will work with music-makers to decide on songs and ways to integrate some instruments as well.
    • Note: Young people’s Zoom sessions are only open to young people and their family/guardians (if their adults wish to attend), but is closed to other community members for the safety of the young participants, except by invitation of the choir director or music team. The Zoom link will be circulated in a closed email group for participants and leaders only. Please RSVP if your family has under-18 members who want to join us, and you haven’t already received communication about this group.
    • Note that Billy Carleton teaches for SAU9, so he is familiar with teaching and working with younger singers as well as adults.
  • Leaders-in-Training (L-I-T) Program Starts in June
    • Engaging older youth to continue last summer’s L-I-T experience.
    • Should be 7th grade and older
    • You will help create educational and entertaining challenges that invite younger participants outside in safe and creative ways (with their adult family/guardian members participation)
    • Together we’ll create some physical/virtual challenges such as letterbox kits on-site around Jackson/Bartlett, design scavenger hunts for summer recrreation and other ways to have physical engagement outside, with prompts designed and facilitated by our Leaders-in-Training
    • RSVP if you want to be part of the Leader=in-Training initiative (7th grade and older)
    • Letter-boxing/geo-caching challenge designs
    • Scavenger hunt design
    • Extended game design
    • Mystery game / live puzzle design
  • Puppets and Story-telling:
    • Expect a delivery of make-your-own puppet kits to families and “church at home” kits.
    • We’ll create live-action puppet skits of sacred stories, filmed via Zoom or other ways, to share with the church once-a-month during worship!
    • Young people who want to participate may pick characters for their puppets and tell the story in your own words, your own way! With your own puppet, that you make!
    • You will choose the stories we tell also.
    • Unless your family doesn’t want such a kit, we’ll plan to deliver one to all of our families as soon as the materials arrive (we hope to have them this week).
    • We’ll schedule Zoom times to explore stories and work out skits, unless we can gather safely outside in small groups, with appropriate social distance precautions (to be determined as circumstances unfold)
  • Church-at-home kits:
    • We’ll deliver church-at-home kits with devotionals and art pages to your families for some quiet, contemplative activity options
  • Prayer flags:
    • We’d love to fly your flags!
    • We’ll provide prayer flag materials, and we invite you to make ones to use at home
    • We also want to share one of your prayer flags in a display outside the church.
  • Prayer Fence:
    • The chalkboard fence will be re-painted white and ready for public use by the end of May.
    • Painting the fence has been adopted as a service project by one of our families.
  • Community Care cards:
    • We would love to include handmade cards or artwork from our young people in care packages that we’re continuing to distribute in the community.
    • If you make cards, we’ll provide a safe place at church for you to return them, for redistribution to members, friends and neighbors who need your cheer & care
    • Messaging is your choice, but we suggest cheerful, inspirational and optimistic messages with universal themes (these won’t be addressed to specific individuals or specific issues) like “thinking of you”, “have a nice day”, “smile”, “friendship”,”peace”, “hope”, “love” and/or “sending you prayers and good thoughts”
  • Adopt-a-friend:
    • As an extension of the Community Care card initiative, we have a small list of vulnerable community members who are lonely or isolated for different reasons. If we have an expression of interest among our younger families, we’d like to match families with some of these neighbors to create some inter-generational communication and relationship-building
    • You can explore how to activate this connection might work.
      • Occasional phone or zoom calls might work with some people, although hearing loss and technology challenges can make this a case-by-case option.
      • Cards and mail are excellent ways to connect.
      • Care package drop-offs are also excellent ways to connect(with social distance precautions)
      • Social-distance visits to wave and chat are possible in some instances, if health isn’t an issue, but we should discuss case-by-case
  • Youth Day(s) in Worship
    • We’ll aim for youth-led worship at least every quarter, every 9-12 weeks with youth-led reflections, readings and music
    • The first such worship session will take place toward the end of June – after graduation activities have concluded (more info to come) – integrating whatever contributions we can provide by that time
  • Scripture readers: 
  • Graduate Recognition:
    • Please RSVP if you have a pending graduate!
    • Please share bios/photos of your graduates, whether they’re finishing high school, college (any level), professional certification programs/training or other educational milestones that we may not have named here
    • In June, we’ll celebrate these young people in the church newsletter and other communication platforms (though not to social media unless we have permission to do so)
    • We want to include all Jackson-based youth plus any local youth (Bartlett, Conway, etc) connected as friends or members of our faith community
    • We welcome updates on other young people connected to our friends and members as extended family such as grandchildren (even if they live in other locations)
  • Music & Art contributions: 
    • If you are a musician or singer or artist, we continue to want to share your special music!
    • The contributions of several families have already made worship and other gatherings a richer, deeper experience, and more such offerings are welcome if and when you’re able to share them
    • Sacred and/or secular music selections are both welcome
    • Pre-recorded audio-only or video performances are best for now
  • Open-ended Outdoor Summer Challenges
    • With the help of Leaders-in-Training, we’ll offer a variety of active outdoor engagements that are educational and entertaining, and can be completed on the family’s schedule, such as scavenger hunts, letterboxing exploration, and more

Spring Youth & Family Program

FAMILY FUN NIGHTS: Fridays, May 3 & June 1
6-8pm

  • Pizza, games and connection for families.
  • Please RSVP to Rev Gail if you plan to attend these evenings.

SUNDAY SCHOOL
During 10:30am worship • Sun, May 5

  • Attend worship in church and then go to class.
  • Please RSVP to Rev Gail if you plan to attend.

YOUTH & FAMILY SUNDAY PROGRAM
9-10:15am • April 28, May 12, May 19, May 26

  • Start at Jackson Community Church, then go outside
  • Weather dependent: indoor option for inclement weather
  • Come dressed for outdoor activities such as hikes and exploration every Sunday morning.
  • Please RSVP to Rev Gail if you plan to attend, and indicate which dates you’ll be present.

YOUTH SUNDAY
10-11:30am • June 2
Jackson Community Church

  • Intergenerational choir
  • Special music by children and families … possibly a youth band?
  • Message by young adult connected with our community
  • Recognition of scout troops
  • Recognition of youth & young adults and their volunteer work in community
  • Recognition of community educators
  • Please RSVP to Rev Gail if you plan to attend

TRILLIUM SUMMIT
8:30am-12:30pm • Sat, June 8
Whitney Community Center

  • Watch for updates via Jackson enews and church email.
  • Worskhop with leadership panel, keynote speaker Riley Parkhurst, and world cafe engagement.
  • Designed by and for students.
  • Peer-led by middle and high-school leaders, with adult mentors.
  • Open to older elementary school students.
  • Both genders welcome, focus on girls & women’s issues.
  • Rev Gail will facilitate this workshop.

FAMILY CAMP
Horton Center, Pine Mountain
(Off Rte 16 between Jackson and Gorham)
June 21-23
Rev Gail & Chris DOktor – Deans

  • Register for a weekend of outdoor adventures, family getaway, and faith engagement.

PEACE & EMPOWERMENT CAMP
8:30am-12:30pm • Mon, June 24-Fri June 28
Jackson Community Church

  • Open K-6 plus CIT (counselor-in-training) positions for 7thgrade and rising students.
  • Based in part on peace curriculum taught by Deans Chris and Gail Doktor at from Horton Center (family camp June 21-23)
  • Focuses on peace and community activism
  • Development of spiritual practices to support this goal, draws on resources from Christian, Buddhist and other traditions

Church service projects & community causes seeking volunteers

Highlights: spring cleaning at church, cutting party for Pease Greeters Christmas stockings, plant sale to address teen homelessness, estate sale to benefit for church, plus help Valley Pride road clean up, women build with Habitat for Humanity and learn more about volunteering for Starting Point. Some RSVPs requested for planning purposes.

FRI, April 27

  • OUTDOOR CLEANUP
    3-5pm • Outdoors at Jackson Community Church. Come prepared to work outside. Wear old clothes, sensible shoes, and bring work gloves. If possible, bring rakes or brooms. We’ll remove sand and leaves from driveway, lawn, and playground, and generally doing a first pass at cleaning up outside. Park across the street if possible; we’re cleaning up the parking lot.

SAT, April 28

  • SPRING CLEANUP DAY
    (mostly indoors due to rainy weather forecast)

    9am-Noon. Come prepared to work inside or outside, depending on your preference. Rain is expected, so we anticipate most projects will be indoors. We’re organizing closets, cleaning windows and hard-to-reach areas, touching up spots inside and outside the church, changing lightbulbs, and sprucing up the church grounds. Wear old clothes, sensible shoes, and bring work gloves. If possible, bring sponges, rags, buckets, rakes or brooms. RSVP to Rev Gail if able to help.

WED, May 9

  • CUTTING PARTY for PEASE GREETERS CHRISTMAS STOCKING PROJECT
    10-Noon • Parish Hall, Jackson Community Church
    Mission Committee is holding a Cutting Party to prepare the materials for veterans’ Christmas Stockings after Laurie McAleer’s 9am Tune Up fitness class. Bring sharp scissors and common pins if you have them. Expect to cut out 60 stockings.  Once completed (they’re taken home to be assembled by the organizers), these stockings go to the Pease Greeters group and are distributed to incoming and outgoing military personnel at Pease Air Force Base.

FRI, MAY 25

SAT, MAY 26

  • PLANT SALE • Outside Jackson Grammar School
    7:30-9am Set up tables and plants for sale outside Jackson Grammar School (near library book sale at Whitney Community Center)
    9am-Noon • Plant Sale.
    Money earned from the plant sale will go to the emerging Homeless Teen Initiative c/o North Country Cares (also the umbrella organization for the Revolving Closet).
  • ESTATE SALE
    7-8am • Set up
    8am-2pm • Jackson Community Church

    The church “estate sale” will take place the same day as the plant sale, outsie of weather permits, indoors if necessary. Donated items (household goods, sports equipment, collectibles, kitchen items, tools) will be sold to benefit the church building and operations. RSVP to Rev Gail if able to help.

Community Causes

Continue reading “Church service projects & community causes seeking volunteers”

UPCOMING OPPORTUNITIES for Youth & Families at Jackson Community Church

(See end of posting for summer intensives and international internships for youth & young adults. Fast-approaching deadlines [March 15, April, etc] for registration and applications or scholarships for some of these opportunities.)

THURSDAYS, Mar 15 & Mar 22

  • Soup & Ski with Family & Friends
    5pm • Parish Hall of Jackson Community Church. Gather with members and friends for soup supper.
    5:30/6pm •  Meet at church parking lot for evening XC ski. Optimal starting point to be determined. For those who able and interested, if weather permits, come on a ‘night ski’ on Jackson XC Center’s trails. Donations will be collected for Jackson Ski Touring Foundation. Bring your own head lamps, ski equipment, layers, and be prepared for outdoor conditions. Ski at your own risk. Bring friends! Open to everyone. All ages welcome.

FRI, MAR 23

  • Film Screening of “404 Not Found” & Soup Supper: Bowls for Homeless Teens in Mt Washington Valley
    5-7pm • Gibson Senior Center, North Conway. In collaboration with Clergy of the Eastern Slope and First Church of North Conway’s Missions Team, screening the film “404 Not Found” that highlights the homeless youth in NH.  Check out the film trailer @  404notfoundfilm.com.  Held in collaboration with Governor Sununu’s “Sleep Out”.  This is a valley issue and will take a valley solution.
  • “Sleep Out” (Stay-Up-Late or Sleep Over at Church)
    8pm, Mar 23 – 9am, Mar 24 • Jackson Community Church
    For youth & chaperones. Stay late at church. Or spend the night. To be held in solidarity with Gov Sununu’s “Sleep Out” event to raise awareness about homelessness. We will stay up late at Jackson Community Church with games and worship, learn about homelessness in the valley, make civic engagement posters. If some people stay overnight, we will wake up to have breakfast together. RSVP and permission slips required.

WED, APR 4: MLK Remembrance Bell Ringing

  • 6pm. • Front door of sanctuary, Jackson Community Church.
    Help ring the bell 39 times in memory of Martin Luther King Jr. This is a national vigil; learn more at www.MLK50Forward.org.

SAT, APR 7: New England Youth Environmental Justice Summit

  • 9am-4pm • Brookside Congregational Church, Manchester, NH
  • Jackson Community Church will cover the cost of registration and attendance. $20/day. RSVP to the church asap if you plan to attend, so that we can register you. Or let us know if you register separately, but plan to attend, so we can coordinate rides and reimbursement for attendance.
  • Rev Gail will attend summit and provide rides.
  • The Summit is open to all middle school, high school and college students; as well as teachers, mentors, pastors, lay leaders and advisors: and anyone interested in acquiring tools for facing the pressing moral issue of climate change.
  • Keynote Speakers:
    • Rev. Dr. Jim Antal, Massachusetts Conference Minister, UCC
    • Rev. Dr. Brooks Berndt, UCC Minister for Environmental Justice
  • Afternoon Breakout Sessions include:
    • Pam Arifian, Director, UCC Northeast Environmental Justice Center
    • Marla Marcum, Founder, Climate Disobedience Center
    • John Ungerleider, Professor, School of International Training
    • Jehann El-Bisi, PhD and Film Director, and Art Desmarais
    • Representatives from 350.org and other groups will lead a workshop on activism in climate change issues

SUN, APR 8: Road to Emmaus Hike

  • 9am • “Road to Emmaus” Walk. Meet at church for family hike if weather permits. Indoor activities available if weather turns

Note: Additional spring youth & family schedule to be announced. Expect outdoor youth & family activities every Sunday at 9am, beginning April 22.

FRI, APR 20-MON, APR 23: Ecumenical Advocacy Days

  • 1pm, Fri – 5pm, Mon • DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Washington, D.C.-Crystal City, 300 Army Navy Drive, Arlington, VA.
    A WORLD UPROOTED: Responding to Migrants, Refugees and Displaced Peoples. A weekend of faith-rooted worship, learning and advocacy in our Nation’s capital – will focus on the uprootedness of our world. We will analyze current policy and envision ways to more fully and justly respond to the global and local needs of displaced communities. Together we will seek policy changes that advance hope and overcome the devastating impacts of conflict, climate change and corruption on God’s people. Ends with congressional advocacy day.

    • REGISTER – Early-bird registration rates available through March 17th. Register now.
    • SCHOLARSHIPS – Justice and Witness Ministries has designated funding for UCC young adults (ages 18-35) to attend Ecumenical Advocacy Days (EAD) in 2018. Learn more and apply by March 23rd.
    • Travel costs and hotel accommodations are separate expenses.
    • Additional scholarships, such as Bushee-Thorne Scholarship, can be applied to this conference!

FRI, MAY 19 – SAT, MAY 20: Middle School Retreat

  • 3pm, Fri – 6pm, Sat • Ipswich, MA
    Spend weekend on retreat with Ipswich Middle School youth group. Stay overnight in sleeping bags at the church on Friday and return to Jackson on Saturday evening. RSVP to church by April 15, 2018  if interested.
YOUTH & YOUNG ADULT INTERNSHIP OPPORTUNITIES
through the UCC
A tuition-free program of the Cooperative Metropolitan Ministries, the IFYI Fellowship is an all-expense paid interfaith immersion experience for young leaders (ages 15-19) providing an opportunity to meaningfully engage together with important global and local issues through the lens of their different religious, ethnic, cultural, economic, social and political backgrounds.

(Ages 21-29)
This Internship Programme stretches over an 18-month period, for four young people aged 21-29. Each intern is assigned to work for 12 months at the WCC offices in Geneva, Switzerland, in one of our many programme areas. This is then to be followed by a six-month work placement in the intern’s own country.
HORTON CENTER
FAMILY CAMP & YOUTH GROUP CAMP
Sun, July 1- Sat, July 7
Flexi-Week.: Come for the day or for a period of days.
  • Rev Gail & Chris Doktor will be deans of family camp.
  • Our youth can come for one day or an overnight!
  • Registration available here:
  • Scholarships such as Bushee-Thorne (for which applications already being considered as of April) can be applied to this camp.
  • Additional camp weeks are also available with focus on different skills such as archery, rock clibing, etc. Full schedule available here.
EASTERN REGIONAL YOUTH EVENT
July 19-22, 2018 

California University of PA, California, Pennsylvania
(grades 7 through 12 )
  • Join us as we worship, play, pray, learn, serve, sing and dream at the 2018 Eastern Regional Youth Event.
  • Stay up-to-date on event details through the event website or contact Ann Desrochers.
  • Scholarships from Bushee-Thorne (applications already being considered as of April) can be applied to this experience.

Sampling of the workshops that will be offered at ERYE.  Each participant will be able to attend 3 workshops. (Workshop list subject to change.)

  • Authentic Faith: The Wisdom of Not Knowing All the Answers
  • Becoming a Transgender AllyBuilding a Team – Playing a Game
  • Disabled God, Queer God: Understanding the Divine Through Identity
  • Disabled in Church: Struggles and Triumphs
  • Earth Avengers: Superheroes for the Planet
  • From Barbie to Wonder Woman!
  • How An Orphan In Mexico Inspired Thousands – And How He Can Inspire You.
  • How Can I Help My Community Prepare For And Respond To A Disaster?
  • Identity Bowling: Intersectionality through Music
  • Our Gender & Sexuality: Confusions and Questions and Wonder
  • Praying with Color, Clay, Beads and Ribbons
  • Praying with the Body
  • Sacred DanceStorytelling for Social Change
  • The Conflict Skills That Nobody Got (but everybody needs)This Is Really Happening
  • Tie-Dyed Faith: Revealing Your God-Colors
  • Walking the Labyrinth to Rejuvenate Your Spirit
  • Watershed Management
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