Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 1/18/2024

Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 1/18/2024

Table of Contents

  • This Week in Worship
  • Message from Rev. Lisa
  • This Week in Religious Exploration
  • Events and Meetings
  • News and Announcements
  • Social & Environmental Justice Committee (SEJC)
  • Volunteer Opportunities
  • Beyond First Parish

This Week in Worship

“Three Lessons in Oneness”

Guest Speaker: Eamon Aghdasi

Worship Assistant: Amy Kavadlo

Greeters: Andrea Geyling-Moore

Flowers: Andrea Geyling-Moore

Audio: Nicholas Miller

Social Hour: Elizabeth Menne & Liz O’Rourke

Please join us for service at 10:30am.

Please log in at 10:20, to give some lead time for the service at 10:30. You will be muted, but you can communicate through the chat box. If you do not have zoom on your computer, please download it ahead of time. It is free.

This week’s offering will be given to the Environmental League of MA (ELMA) whose purpose is to secure the health and well-being of the environment and of future generations. It advocates for policy that meets the scale and urgency of our environmental challenges. VP of Policy, Amy Boyd Rabin will speak.

Eamon Aghdasi is a Baha’i from Milton, MA and is his community’s representative to the Milton Interfaith Clergy Association (MICA). He is a lifelong Baha’i and a proud friend to the Unitarian Universalist community. Like many of his fellow Baha’is, Eamon is a believer in the importance of dialogue and unity across races, nationalities, and religious communities. His professional background is in business and economics, and is primarily focused on investments in developing countries. Eamon is native of Massachusetts, and currently lives in Milton with his wife and three children.

Activities were buzzing all around Milton and surrounding areas during the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr day of service. One such event was the multi-age blessings bag compilation and distribution. Blessing bags are (often) zip-lock bags containing toiletry items, packaged snacks and items for physical warmth to be distributed to unhoused people..

The organizers commented that far more volunteers showed up than last year, which is a note for the planning of next year. The good news is the increased awareness and care for unhoused and/or housing challenged people. The challenging news is that support will be needed for years to come.

The vibrant group of many ages compiled around 700 bags. Our Family Ministries Director, Louise, was among the many volunteers.

After compilation, the bags were distributed to 9 organizations: Bridge Over Troubled Water, St. Francis House, Pine St. Inn, Veterans Services, Rosie’s Place, the Manna program at St. Pauls, Interfaith Social Services. Immigrant Family Services and Liberty House. 

In each bag was a small note, created primarily by children and youth, offering a short phrase. The most popular phrase was “You are loved”.

The results of the Blessing Bags project were announced Monday evening at the town-wide Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration at Concord Baptist Church. As president of the Milton Interfaith Clergy Association, I had the honor to preside, along with many wonderful interfaith colleagues.

A day of abundance, of hope and of conviction. 

Blessings Be, Rev. Lisa

Music This Week

This Sunday the Meetinghouse Choir will be singing a choral anthem adapted from the music of opera composer Giacomo Puccini, and based on a text by the Pakistani activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai: “Raise Up Your Voice”. Her words remind us that “when the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful”. Guest soprano Carina Digianfilippo will be offering a solo called “Children of Men” by American composer and civil rights activist Zenobia Perry. The text is drawn from the writings of Baha’u’llah, the founder of the Baha’i faith.

Childcare during Choir Rehearsals

Childcare will be available in the nursery starting at 8:30am for caregivers to attend choir rehearsal. If you have any questions about joining the choir, please contact Tim at If you have any questions about childcare, please contact Louise at

Religious Education

We’re so excited to be offering a UU-themed week of summer fun this year!  Our week will include play, worship, community, crafts, movement, and adventures as we learn more about our faith as Unitarian Universalists. Our community will mainly be folks at First Parish Milton, with plans in the works to bring in friends from nearby UU churches. Everyone is welcome at our week of summer fun, as long as they are fully aware that our week will be centered around UU values and incorporate UU traditions. Details:

-August 19th-23rd from 9-3 (with options for early drop-off at 8 and late pick-up at 4 – a previous communication said late pick-up at 9, which isn’t true. But, if your family needs more flexibility, we can have a conversation.)

-For children entering grades 1-6 (with some flexibility)

-Sliding scale $200-400 (financial support available)

-At First Parish Milton

If your family is interested, please use this form to express interest. More details will be coming in the next month! Email Louise ( with questions. And definitely definitely email Louise if you are interested in helping out with this endeavor :)


Events and Meetings

The All Church Council, a meeting of First Parish Committee Chairs, will take place on Friday, January 26 from 6:00 pm-8:00 p.m. All are welcome to join.

Save The Date:

Chocolate Auction, Sunday, February 11th @ 11:45 am in Parish Hall

Stay tuned for a special email next week with more details.

Time to dust off your favorite chocolate recipes.


Please save the dates for MCC’s final two concerts of the season:

Sunday, February 25 at 3:00 pm:

The Ninth Annual “Sing For Their Supper” concert to benefit the Milton Food Pantry and Milton Residents Fund

–Sunday, April 28 at 3pm: “In Community: Celebrating LGBTQ+ Stories”

Message from Mary Blanchette

Fun Footstool Project

You may have noticed some of the footstools in the meetinghouse are worn and I have been thinking about recovering them. I did one with the help of a friend who knows what she’s doing and has offered to help with the rest. I think it would be fun to get a group together to recover the rest of them.

If you are interested in this fun and rewarding project let me know and we can make a date. It will be a nice way to spend a winter morning or afternoon. No experience necessary. 

Contact Mary Blanchette at

Climate Action@HOME – upcoming discussions

The Climate team is planning monthly updates after worship for those who want to learn more about climate action. If you have topics you would like to discussion please contact Tracey Robinson at tdr02186@gmail.

February Date TBD – Heat Pumps: Come hear a panel of FPM members share info about their experience with installing heat pumps in their homes.

News and Announcements

We sincerely thank you for your generous gift to the organizations below. We are so lucky to have your support.

 THRIVE – GULU $1,134.61

Stone House $664.90

AFAB $507.27


The Stewardship Committee announces that this year’s Annual Budget Drive has begun! The financial commitments that we hope to secure from our members and friends over the next two months will be used to cover First Parish’s operating expenses for Fiscal Year 2025, which begins on July 1st. Each household will be receiving an email from Stewardship in the next couple of weeks asking for your contribution. Embedded in the email will be a “link” via which you can simply and easily submit your financial commitment for next year. We also include the link here for your convenience.


If you have already been a financial supporter of First Parish, we are very grateful. Our hope is that you would consider a 3% addition to the amount you contributed last year. If this is your first time making a financial commitment, we will be very grateful for whatever you choose to contribute.

Thank you,

The Stewardship Committee of First Parish in Milton—Charles Franich (chair), Rob Dahl, Mallory Digges, Eric Miller, and Mark Ostrem

Social & Environmental Justice Committee (SEJC)

February 7th is the next date!

S&EJ (Social & Environmental Justice committee) is looking for volunteers the first and third Wednesday of each month to contribute lunches. We hope to deliver 70 lunches twice a month to support shelter guests.

 See updated instructions on the Mainspring SignUpGenius page and signup whenever you can help out.

We are counting on your support!

Racial Justice Task Force

Bridging Dinner-TOMORROW

First Parish and Church of the Holy Spirit’s next Bridging dinner will be held on Friday, January 19 from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM at Debbie Alsebai’s house at 11 Morton Road, Milton.

The dinner will be catered by a local black owned restaurant and dessert will be Deb’s popular carrot cake. $25 per person.

Please RSVP to Deb Alsebai if you would like to join the gathering.

A New Year’s Invitation to Learn Together:

Environmental Justice and Building Our New Grid – Where Should It All Go?

Saturday, January 20, 2pm – 3:30pm, First Parish Hall (hot cider/snacks)

Join our Social & Environmental Justice Committee (SEJC), UU Mass Action, MA Environmental Justice (EJ) Legislative Table, other statewide UU churches, and several metro-Boston organizations our church has supported through its monthly Share the Plate (STP) program for an educational afternoon. The elephant in the room is: How do we build the renewable distributed electric grid we need — fast — while not repeating mistakes of the past? We will hear about the shared vision for MA infrastructure, energy democracy, and centering frontline* communities as well as the EJ Table’s current policy proposal to greenlight good projects quickly and nip bad projects in the bud. We will Zoom the event while enjoying each other, snacks, and the opportunity to learn how to advocate for change. Spread the word.

*[Frontline communities are those that experience the “first and worst” consequences of climate change. These are often communities of color whose communities were placed in the least desirable areas of cities, often with high exposure to climate impacts like flooding. Source: CareAbout Climate.Org

Beyond First Parish

“Plastics is the New Coal”

Come out of the cold and into the warmth of Milton Public Library to listen to Kathy Raiz of Beyond Plastics on Wednesday evening, January 31.

Beyond Plastics is building a well-informed, effective movement seeking to achieve societal changes needed to save our planet from negative health, climate, and environmental impacts from the producing, usaging, and disposing of plastics.

This event is being held in the Keyes Room of Milton Public Library at 6:00 PM for socializing and light refreshments. The speaker begins at 6:30 PM.  

All are welcome ~ spread the word! Sponsored by Milton Garden Club. 


Follow First Parish on Facebook and get updates, poems, announcements and more. You’ll be glad you did!


Monday – Thursday 10:00 am – 1:00 pm

Other times by appointment


Tuesday – Thursday 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Other times by appointment

The Church office is closed on Fridays

Sundays through mid June

  • Worship, 9:30 am in the Meetinghouse
  • Choir Rehearsal (most Sundays) at 8:45 am

SIGN UP GENIUS (formerly known as the Planner)

The link to SignUp Genius is:

You can sign up for one our our Sunday volunteer positions.