By the Rev. Sarah Buteux; Published by The Christian Citizen It’s Thursday night and people are starting to arrive for Common Ground, a farm-to-table dinner ministry at First Churches of Northampton, Mass. Folks come through the door, hang up their coats, and then put on aprons because worship for us starts in the kitchen. Our liturgy actually begins with a recipe that will highlight food we have either grown in our community garden or sourced as locally as possible. Once the soup is on and the salad is prepared, people spread out to set tables, learn music, catch up with one another or explore the evening’s theme through art that will grace our worship space. By six o’clock, most everyone has arrived, and I begin to sing a simple call-and-response melody. As I sing, the congregation gathers in a circle [...]
At Thursday Night's Common Ground we began with these words of welcome: Good evening everyone and welcome to Common Ground. Tonight, as we cook and eat and pray and sing together we hope to make some thing holy together. We hope to make church together, which connects beautifully to our theme for this evening, because the truth is that church has always been something we have made together. Christianity has always been a work in progress. Contrary to popular institutional opinion, there was no blueprint handed down to a chosen few the day Jesus ascended into heaven. There was no instruction booklet left behind with all the rules and creeds and rituals and traditions of our faith laid out for all time. What was given, what was handed down to us, were stories…stories of hope and healing, stories of peace [...]
Common Ground was featured in the December 2016 Gather For Faith and Action Magazine. check out www.gathermagazine.org for more
This sermon was preached at Common Ground on November 17,2016 by Sarah Buteux We began with a poem. Mending Wall BY ROBERT FROST Something there is that doesn't love a wall, That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it, And spills the upper boulders in the sun; And makes gaps even two can pass abreast. The work of hunters is another thing: I have come after them and made repair Where they have left not one stone on a stone, But they would have the rabbit out of hiding, To please the yelping dogs. The gaps I mean, No one has seen them made or heard them made, But at spring mending-time we find them there. I let my neighbour know beyond the hill; And on a day we meet to walk the line And set the wall [...]
By Heather Adams | Hadams@masslive.com Follow on Twitter on September 26, 2016 at 10:40 AM As the sun begins to set, approximately two dozen people line picnic tables topped with fresh tomatoes, bread and fruits in the middle of Grow Food Northampton Organic Community Garden. Most of the food at the dinner was grown in the community garden by members of Common Ground, a farm-to-table dinner church through First Churches of Northampton. Read the full story here
Calling All Gardeners We can really use your help this Sunday September 11! We're hoping for a good turnout at our gardens between 4:30-6:00 to do our usual harvesting and watering, but also some other jobs, like weeding, mowing, mulching, and putting some of the garden to bed. Please come if you can.