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November 2022 Newsletter

Hamburg United Methodist Church 116 Union St Hamburg, New York, 14075 (716) 649-8080 Worship Livestream: Sundays at 10 am Via Facebook Live & Youtube

From The Desk of Pastor David Nicol

Dear Saints,

The last year has been a whirlwind! As we approach Church/Charge Conference for Hamburg, Four Corners, Gowanda and Versailles on Thursday 17 November 2022 at 7:00 PM at Hamburg UMC, I am glad to continue to be your pastor! While we continue to work out the kinks in the preaching rotation, and build the relationship between these congregations, I hope and pray the relationship will bless us all.

I am thrilled to see that the Holy Spirit is on the move! At Hamburg UMC, we have new faces in worship, a deepening relationship with Sparks of Hope, and I am convinced a bright future of meeting people and leading them into a deep relationship with Jesus Christ. I hear that our rotation of preachers are offering great hope, and that they have been well-received by those who are hearing the gospel through their work!

After a long-hiatus due to COVID, two Emmaus weekends have been held at HUMC, and I pray with the other members of the community that we have provided space for spiritual awakening for the pilgrims who attended. May God use them in new ways, to offer grace to the Body of Christ.

In the letter to the Ephesians, we read that “The gifts [Jesus] gave were that some would be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some [shepherds] and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until all of us come to the unity of the faith and the knowledge of the Son of God, to maturity, to the measure for the full stature of Christ (Ephesians 4:11-13, NRSV).” I borrow on an idea here I learned from Alan Hirsch at a workshop years ago, and reinforced by reading his thoughts on this passage. Hirsch makes the case that these are not Church offices in Ephesians 4, but gifts of the Holy Spirit. Apostles extend and order the community, prophets call us to accountability and repentance, evangelists share good news, shepherds (usually translated “pastors”) gather together and foster communal relationships, and teachers teach (in the Church, the truth about God, particularly in terms of Bible study and theology). These gifts come from Christ, through the Holy Spirit, but are part of the grace of God poured out on all creation.

You are gifted for ministry. I believe that without a doubt. Every person alive is gifted for ministry! We use these gifts in our jobs, but they are given so that we might all grow to be like Jesus, and to help those around us encounter God’s grace and become whole and holy. Paul talks about particular spiritual gifts throughout his letters, but in Ephesians they are listed in this way, Hirsch says almost as “personality types.” When these gifts work as designed, he argues, if “each part is working properly, promotes the body’s growth in building itself up in love (Ephesians 4:16).” We learn what our gifts are as we serve Christ together, as we study scripture, and as we walk with the Lord each day.

I pray you will seek to find the gifts God has given you, and that each of us will gladly use those gifts to build up the Body of Christ, in the place we find ourselves, so that the world around us can see what it means to follow Jesus in a community of gifted, grace-filled people, and that love will abound not just among us, but through us, for a hurting world.

In Christ’s Service, with you,

The Rev. David Nicol, Pastor of Hamburg UMC


Alan Hirsch and Tim Catchim, The Permanent Revolution: Apostolic Imagination and Practice for the 21st Century Church, Kindle., Jossey-Bass leadership network 57 (San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, 2012).


Report on the 2022 Upper New York Annual Conference, October 6th – 8th

I participated in the first two days of this year’s virtual Upper New York (UNY) Annual Conference as the Lay Member to the Annual Conference representing our church. I was unable to participate in the session on the last day of the Annual Conference due to a conflict.

The morning session began on the first day with a worship service with a message from Bishop Mark Webb, followed by clergy and laity sessions.

The Leadership Report was presented during the afternoon session. Conference Associate Lay Leader Jessica White and Dean of the Cabinet, the Rev. Mike Weeden, spoke of the mission, vision, and purpose of the UNY Conference and using the L3 model (Loving, Learning, Leading) in their work to reach the goal of 50% of UNY congregations becoming more vital.

The report of the Board of Pensions and Health Benefits was presented next. Recommendations regarding pension payments and an increase to the past service rate for pension payments to retired clergy were approved. Recommendations made during the presentation of the Equitable Compensation report in regard to minimum base compensation, yearly increments and compensation for clergy serving more than one church were approved.

The Conference Commission on Religion and Race presented their report, focusing on how many ministries and congregations have gone through the Imagine No Racism 2.0 curriculum. They also discussed their goal of educating more young people across the Conference on dismantling racism.

Resolutions relating to Encouragement of Voting by all Citizens, Candidacy Interviews and support for a bill pending in Congress, titled Defending the Human Rights of Palestinian Children and Families Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act, all passed.

Carmen Vianese, head of the UNY General and Jurisdictional Delegation, led the members of the Conference in voting on nominees to send forward to the Northeastern Jurisdictional Conference for the Episcopal election. Following a series of votes, the Rev. Wendy Deichman received the Conference’s endorsement as a candidate for election as a Bishop in the Northeastern Jurisdictional Conference.

The second day of the Annual Conference began with a session led by the Rev. Dr. Kim Reisman about how an embrace is the perfect metaphor for evangelism.

The UNY Board of Trustees presented its report on this day. The board’s work includes the purchase, sale and maintenance of Conference properties and managing the Conference’s master insurance program. The board also presented resolutions, which were approved, for the closure of fifteen churches and the disaffiliation of eight churches from the United Methodist denomination. In addition, an update was provided on the lawsuits brought against the Conference under the Child Victims Act.

A resolution calling on those leaving the United Methodist Church to resign their positions as delegates to the General Conference and the Jurisdictional Conference was approved. In addition, a resolution for the Creation of a Buffalo 10 Scholarship in the name of the 10 victims of the mass shooting at the Tops Market on Jefferson Avenue in Buffalo was approved.

The Council of Finance & Administration (CF&A) presented the 2023 Ministry Share Budget, noting that even after reducing spending in many Ministry Areas, the overall budget is $275,000 more than the 2022 budget, mainly because of the need to increase salaries that have remained flat for many years. The budget was approved.

The day ended with Memorial Service, held at Liverpool UMC and livestreamed, celebrating clergy and clergy spouses who have passed away since the last Annual Conference.

The last day kicked off with the Young Adult worship service. A list of the 2023 Conference Advance Special Offerings was approved next. The day ended with the Service of Commissioning and Ordination.

A link to additional information for the Annual Conference on the Upper New York Conference website is as follows:

Respectfully submitted,

Dan Paskie, HUMC Lay Member to the Annual Conference


Announcements from the Office

The office will be putting together an announcement slideshow for the gathering space. Content is accepted weekly and due on Wednesday Morning to the church office.

**Please note for repeating slides, the last Sunday it should be run.

Office hours

Monday- Thursday: 9am-2pm

Friday: 9 am-Noon

Email us!!

Jeannine Vanwey:

Patrick Fitzgerald:

Cristina Glover:


If unable to serve on your appointed date,

please make arrangements to switch with another Steward







Sparks Building / 107 Main, Hamburg – No Admission Cost


12:30 pm until 5 pm

Watch the Buffalo Bills game on our really big TV screen. Bring a snack dish to pass. We will have pizza, chicken wings, and lots of other food…and soda pop/coffee / bottled water too. Invite your dad, your nephews, your brothers, your sons, and your grandsons too. Invite your neighbors and the guys you work with. Let’s make this the best football tailgate party ever! Sign up for the party on the poster in the Gathering Space. You’ll have a great time with good food, great football, and good guys. Mark your calendar now!

~ Rollin Shoemaker ( 716)-444-5537


United Methodist Student Day – November 27, 2022

Across the country, the people of The United Methodist Church are serving the people God loves in Jesus’ name. We’re doing it at home, but so often we’d like to do more.

  • We want to serve those in other places who are suffering.

  • We want to offer spiritual words of hope and life.

  • And we want to be well-equipped to do both!

But the reality for most of us is that our responsibilities—home, family, work—don’t allow us to engage with every need we’d like to meet. Right now there are UMC young people—who might not have had the resources to attend a school of their choice, or, for some, any school at all—who’ve been sent by you into the world God loves because of your giving to United Methodist Student Day. When you give generously you are supporting these students as they prepare for a life that unites faith with knowledge.

Nurturing Christian Leaders Like Ricky Blue

The son of two addicted parents, Ricky Blue had grown up without much hope for a future. But when Ricky’s church family—Louisiana’s Luling UMC—raised $4000 for Ricky to begin college, hope was born. Then, the Gift of Hope Scholarship, made possible only by your generous giving to United Methodist Student Day, allowed Ricky to continue. Today Ricky is a certified candidate for ministry in the Illinois-Great Rivers Annual Conference.

When you support United Methodist Student Day, you make it possible for more students like Ricky to serve the world God loves. Offering envelopes will be with the offering plate in the sanctuary and at the Welcome Center beginning November 27. You can make your donation that day or any Sunday thereafter. You may also send your donation by check to the church or through online banking.



Our 38th annual Homespun Holiday Bazaar, sponsored by United Women in Faith and supported by the entire church, is upon us. Please tell your friends and family about the bazaar, and come to the Bazaar to shop Friday, Nov. 4 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. and Saturday Nov. 5 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. – and we need your help in the home stretch!


All who are generously baking for the bazaar: The church will be open all day Friday, Nov. 4. Please bring your items to the church kitchen no later than 5 PM Friday or 9:30 AM Saturday. Please label any item that contains nuts and label the kind of pie or cookie if it is not obvious.

Please label pies as luncheon pies if they are to be used for the take-out luncheon, and they can be left on the first counter as you enter the kitchen. Items for the Bake Sale can be placed on the far counter (cutting board top) or if it’s full, on nearby counters.

THANK YOU!! If you have not signed up to bake, any contribution will still be welcomed!

Any questions, call Barb Meader at 716-648-1273.

Drop off your handcrafted items!

Handcrafted items are still being accepted. Please bring them to church and drop them off in the Parlor. Questions, call Pat Adema at 716-627-5566.

Join in the fun – come and help! We still need help with a variety of tasks to make the bazaar a success! Willing to help? Please contact Rose Caldwell at 716-713-9548 or Sharon Tiballi at 716-980-6171.

Pick up a Soup and Dessert Takeout for you, your friends, and your family anytime during the Bazaar. Takeouts are only $8 and include a 16 oz. container of your choice of Chicken Noodle Soup, Beef Vegetable Soup, or Chili. Crackers and Dessert (Pie or Cake) are also included. Available until sold out.

Come and shop!

Come do your holiday shopping for friends and family. Great items handcrafted by our church family and newly added vendors. Bring a friend or two or more! Let family and friends with small children know they can come with a list, and they can shop with a helper in the Children’s Christmas Shoppe.

Remember, proceeds benefit missions that support women and children locally, nationally, and internationally.



SCYC proudly welcomes vocalists for the 2022-2023 season. Middle School and high school students who wish to enrich their musical learning and vocal abilities are encouraged to register. No prior experience is required. Choir practices will be held Thursday evenings from 6 pm to 7 pm once per week from September through May. Choir members will perform once a month at Hamburg United Methodist Church and other venues within our communities.

Music selections will include challenging, fun, well-written, and varied pieces that will suit everyone in the audience.

The goal of the Southtowns Community Youth Choir is to uplift our communities through high-quality choral music and to provide musical education to singers through structured programming. The Choir provides a safe setting where youth can explore and develop musical literacy and vocal technique while becoming confident performers.

Many thanks to Hamburg United Methodist Church, whom through their sponsorship, there is no fee to participate in this program. However, it is expected that participants will attend weekly practices and performances that are held once monthly.



The Retired Men’s Fellowship of Hamburg UMC will have their monthly lunch gathering on Tuesday, November 15 at 12 Noon at ZJ’s Restaurant in the Hamburg Village Plaza. All retired men are invited. Come and bring a friend for food and fellowship.

Dick Caldwell, facilitator



Returning your cans and bottles can be an easy way to donate $$ to Little Lamb Preschool. Just take them to Can Bottle Return, 4255 Clark Street in Hamburg (next to the former Vara Cleaners) and designate your refund to Little Lamb. They keep the money on record and periodically send Little Lamb a check. Easy for you…easy for them…and much appreciated by Little Lamb.



  1. Legacy by James A. Michner. In the year of his 80th birthday, and the 200th anniversary of our Constitution, James Michner has written a novel of great impact. Major Norman Starr, attached to the National Security Council, is being called before a congressional committee. In preparation, he thinks back to the long line of Americans from whom he has descended: a Supreme Court justice, another who helped to draft a document to guide the young United States, a courageous suffragist, and more. Legacy is as timeless as truth and justice and offers an eloquent lesson in American history.

  2. Luke, a Devotional Commentary by Leo Zanchettin (ed.) This book is designed to engage the minds and hearts of the readers as they meditate on the life of Jesus as portrayed by Luke. In his stories, Luke shows people whose lives were radically changed by an encounter with the love of God the Father and the healing touch of Jesus. The reader can use this book as a personal guide in an effort to follow Jesus Christ as his disciple.

  3. The Bush is Still Burning by Lloyd John Ogilvie. Think of your deepest need – the one thing which causes the greatest difficulty in your daily living. It may be fear, insecurity, loneliness, guilt, boredom, grief, anxiety. . . All of us struggle with one or more of these, even though we believe in God. Ogilvie believes we need to discover a new God – the true God who is present and powerful in our lives today. This is the God who revealed himself as the “I Am” to Moses and revealed more and more of himself in Jesus Christ.

As we take time during November to give thanks for our blessings, there may be time for reading a book that will bless us with new thoughts and concepts. Our church library has a good collection of books for your reading enjoyment.


Book Club will meet on Monday, November 28th at 10:30 am in the Church Library. We will be discussing The Book Woman's Daughter by Kim Michele Richardson.

The December selection is: The Only Woman in the Room by Marie Benedict. We will be meeting on December 19th (one week early).


Hello everyone, It is the time of the year to think about Children and Christmas. Leo and Ginger Jensen and the mission's ask for your prayers and help to show our Christian Love to children in need... We have lots of Samaritan Purse Shoeboxes.

There is a display and information in the gathering space.

Thanks in Christ, serving our Lord.


Join us for a virtual fellowship! This group is a place to share prayer requests, devotions, concerns, joys, and even some humor with your church family. Join the Hamburg UMC Fellowship group on Facebook.


PRAYER CONCERNS? If you would like someone added to our church prayer list, call Barb Meader (648-1273) or email her at, or contact anyone who is a Prayer, Care, and Share member. Daily we lift the concerns that have been shared with us.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4: 4-7)

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