Northeast United Methodist Church is an environmentally sustainable, spiritually fulfulling, socially just community of faith in the United Methodist tradition in Northeast Minneapolis.
Northeast United Methodist Church
Thursday, May 24, 2018
Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors

May 2018 Newsletter

From the Pastor’s Desk…  

Big Changes are happening or soon to happen at NEUMC.
Change is hard to accept, sometimes, especially when we are happy with the way things are; change pulls us in directions we don’t always want to go.  When one thing changes it affects everything else and then sooner than you can blink an eye, everything changes!  What a wonderful idea!  what a pain in my daily life!  Humans have a hard time adapting to change—evolving is a long ordeal.  But don’t forget! as Christians, we are okay with that. We are Easter people and we are totally fine with change—we expect nothing less.
For, “what we call “normal” died with Jesus on the cross.  As we step back into the seemingly normal life again after the drama of Holy Week and Easter, we are standing on the cusp of the unknown, the possibility of a totally new and different way of life.”
This is the life into which we were baptized—change and acceptance of change.  In fact, We are called to be changemakers, working with Jesus to bring to life all the wonderful dreams God has for us.
Beloved of NEUMC, you accepted me eight years ago, whether you wanted me or not.  And, now, you are being asked to accept new pastors and new ministries again! What a joy!  And what a pain, especially as we are so happy now. My heart is breaking because we love each other so much.  And, my heart is breaking open.  God is breaking open our hearts to be flexible and accepting of new life which is surely on her way.
We are all being called to be who we say we are: Be Easter People!


Pastor Sarah


April 23, 1968 was the birthday of The United Methodist Church. This year we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the formation of our denomination.

 Five decades is always an important milestone, and 2018 marks the Big 5-0 for The United Methodist Church. That’s the reason we’ve compiled a quick list of 50 reasons the world is a better place thanks to the witness and work of the people of the UMC.

There are so many more we could list and you surely have your own reasons. We encourage you to share them using #UMC50.


50 reasons to celebrate The United Methodist Church


North East UMC Family,


On Sunday, May 6th Pastor Sarah will be confirming Leo James Fleischhacker, Summer Michael Knoll Van Slooten & Myranda Sax Philpot


Jim, Stacy, Ed and Trish would like to invite you to help us celebrate the confirmation with a luncheon in the Fellowship Hall following the service. We hope you can join us for this special part of their Faith Journey!


Miriam in May

Mark your calendar for our “field trip” on May 7! We will be visiting the Minneapolis Telecommunications Network (MTN) – a media and technology center located in the heart of the arts district in NE Minneapolis.  They provide an accessible platform for media creation and technology training and give our community a platform to share their voice with a larger audience. We will meet at 5:30 p.m. at church and car pool to 820 18th Avenue NE. The 30-minute tour will begin a 6:00 p.m.

Afterwards we’ll have dinner/dessert at a local restaurant.


Special Offering for the Month of May


EWB Honduran Water Project


The Milla Tres, Honduras Water Project being designed and constructed by the MN Professional Chapter of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) has been underway for almost two years.  The project to supply an adequate quantity of quality water to the community of Milla Tres is well underway with the recent completion of a 17,000-gallon water tank and the starting of the construction of the 2-mile-long pipeline from the water source in the nearby mountains.  Phase I of the project is projected to be completed in 2019, pending the raising of adequate funds.  In 2017 NEUMC generously donated to the Milla Tres Water Project and we are asking for your continued support for this most important project to the community of Milla Tres, Honduras.


A Celebration of Pastor Sarah for Her ministry of love:

Sunday May 20, 2018

10:15 Worship

11:30 Luncheon

12:15 Program

Our Beloved Pastor Sarah Lawton has been reappointed to a new congregation in Duluth, MN.  Please join us as we take this opportunity to celebrate and give thanks for her ministry of love and compassion that has touched so many of us in the church and the Northeast community.

Church Happenings!

Mortgage Paid!

Last month, Stepping Stone Development made the balloon payment on the former Trinity Sunday school building. This enabled Northeast UMC to pay off the mortgage on the elevator and other accessibility renovations made almost 20 years ago. We were also able to give the Minnesota Annual conference a check for $20,000, half of our pledge for the “Reach-Renew-Rejoice” campaign to help plant more United Methodist churches in Minnesota.

We are saving the rest of the money for repairs at the parsonage across the street; the “bomb shelter” under the garage is collapsing, making it more than a little scary to park in the garage. This is something we need to get fixed before our new pastor moves in. We also want to repair the steps on the Lowry side of the church.

Those of you who have been contributing to the Accessibility Fund can now switch your offerings over to the Project Fund. If you haven’t been making contributions to the Project Fund, now is a good time to start. Our church was built in 1937, and the upkeep on an old building is never-ending.


Get Crafty!

Get out your craft supplies and start crafting! We will hold a “Hunting Widow’s” Craft Sale Saturday, November 3. We will invite crafters and artists from the Northeast area to rent tables in the Social Hall, the big Sunday School room on second floor and the Narthex. Northeast UMC will have tables in the Preschool and the Coffee Shop to sell our crafts and canned goods. More details will follow.


Welcome Rebecca Heyn

You may have seen and heard her at the Easter service or on April 29. Soon you’ll hear her every Sunday! Rebecca Heyn will be our new, permanent accompanist, starting June 3. Rebecca, who teaches piano in her home, received her BA in piano performance from the University of Minnesota-Morris and her masters in piano accompaniment and chamber music from Northern Arizona University. She has taught at MacPhail Center for Music and served as an accompanist at All Saints Lutheran Church in Eagan. If you want to work with her on music for Sunday services, you can reach her at



It was lovely to have warm sun on my shoulders while in the garden yesterday.  I enjoy the change of seasons but do seem to think winter over stayed its welcome this year thus making yesterday more beautiful.  Yea for spring!

It is always amazing to me to see that the melting piles of snow have emerging tulips and blooming crocus and hyacinth right next to them. I do love the miracles of the gardens.  With these blooms comes a Spring To-do List on Sign-Up Genius and a printed copy in the coffee shop (or Narthex on Sundays).  If you finish a task or part of it, please note on both the paper copy and the electronic genius copy, if you are able, to help with group communications.  Our gardening crew (this includes everybodyJ) will keep trying to be better on communications so folks know how to plug themselves in as they are able.  Hopefully having more electronic garden information will enable others from within and outside our community to garden together as able.  We still need paper for those that do not have electronic access. Please remember to invite others from the community to garden with us again this season.  We are still a communal community garden. Our common gardening day is every Wednesday, weather permitting, our main time is 4 pm - 7 pm.

Some places that you can help: We always need help loading up woodchips from the free wood chip pile on the corner of Marshall and 30th Ave NE Minneapolis.  It is helpful to put a layer of wood chips on beds to keep weeds down and save on watering.  I put a small tarp in the back of my car and I use 5-gallon buckets or garbage bags or storage bins to haul the chips.  Pulling up creeping Charlie (we don’t compost this or thistles, morning glories, or tomato plants because our composters aren’t hot enough) and putting them in the yard waste containers.  Turning the composter bins and piles. Picking up fallen branches and placing in the wood pile at the parsonage.

Cindy Sowden has started some squash and they are growing temporarily in the Walipini until they can be transplanted to a garden bed for the summer.  Our prayer plants have been transplanted to larger containers.  George Carlson had donated some of his “special water wall tomato thingies” last fall before moving to Waterville.  So, we will try planting a few of the tomato plants early May before the last frost to see how they work.  We have many of our plants started and have most seeds available from last year so our needs will be a short list. The list will be in the Narthex if you want sign up to purchase and provide.

I will not be available for most of the planting time so I am hoping you will share a bit more time this planting season as able.  Seeds and planting layout will be in the coffee shop along with the popsicle sticks for ID.  If you haven’t noticed previous years we use permanent markers and write information about plant on the popsicle sticks to mark the rows or area that is planted right away when planting.  Otherwise we get very confused without popsicle stick markers.  We ask that you also note on the diagram or reference sheet what variety of seed and the date and initials when you plant.  We have a google doc that is shared to track what we do when we are planting and it helps us keep track our plants. This helps us to know if brands and varieties grow well or not or if some taste better than others. Sue & Sharon Carley and Sara Jane help to keep track of this info and updating the google document on the gardens history. This is also where we track the harvesting donation quantities.  Keeping legible good notes for us on what you are planting is very helpful as well as sharing what you like or didn’t like about our produce during the year.  I don’t know if you noticed but we have been trying something different each year.  Over the years we planted peanuts, runner beans, fava beans, artichokes, mini pumpkins, gourds and this year we will try luffa sponges.  Remember if you have something special you would like us to plant you need to let us know.  Please plant something in your own space for food shelf.

I attended a fruit tree grafting class last Sunday afternoon at the Tiny Diner in South Minneapolis. It was part of a series that Land by Hand was offering on the Art of Growing Organic Fruit taught by Cody Mastel.  What a pleasant experience with the folks and I have a little peach tree to be eventually planted in our NEUMC gardens.  I have a few scion varieties to try grafting as well.  I would share the handout I received at the class and share more to those interested.  I learned about the class being offered via a web communication comgar.  If you are interested you can google it and sign on and you will receive notifications as well.

Thanks for your good works! Sara Jane Van Allen



Love Offering for Missions


Each year, churches in the Minnesota Annual Conference take a Love Offering for missions. The offering is brought to annual conference session-a gathering of United Methodist clergy and laity from across the state. Pastor Sarah will be taking NE UMC’s offering, please remember the Love offering in your giving.


Love Offering (annual conference May 29-June 1)

The theme of the 2018 Annual Conference session, taking place May 29-June 1 in St. Cloud, is “Discover Joy: Live Deeply”’ and funds from this year’s Love Offering will go to three projects:

65% will go to Puerto Rico Hurricane Recovery Trips. As teams are formed and team leaders are trained, most of the Love Offering funds will be used for construction supplies bought and used on the island. Some of the funds will cover the purchase of hygiene kit and cleaning bucket supplies. Additional funds will be used for scholarships for first-time mission participants.

 20% will go to Park Avenue UMC Children’s Defense Fund Freedom Schools Program. The Freedom Schools Program is a six-week summer day camp experience for children. Its mission is to ensure that every child receives “A healthy start, a head start, a fair start, a safe start, and a moral start in life and successful passage to adulthood with the help of caring families and communities.” Love Offering funds will cover expenses for reading curriculum materials and for young adult mentors.

15% will go to NUMAS Haus. NUMAS Haus provides emergency shelter and support services to homeless single women and their children in New Ulm and surrounding Brown County. Adjacent and connected to First UMC in New Ulm, clients are able to live there for up to 90 days as they complete a program that includes counseling, health and financial management, parenting and food preparation skills, and obtaining access to count social services and vocational training. Love Offering funds will be used to help families with transitional rent assistance for six to 12 months.



“The thing to do, it seems to me, is to prepare yourself so you can be a rainbow in somebody else’s cloud. Somebody who may not look like you. May not call God the same name you call God — if they call God at all,” she chuckled. “I may not dance your dances or speak your language. But be a blessing to somebody. That’s what I think.”Maya Angelou