Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 1/7/2021

Weekly Link 1-7-2021

This Week in Virtual Worship


Sunday, January 10, 2021 10:30am

January Worship Theme: BEING

“Creatures of Habit”

Facilitated by: Rev. Lisa Ward

Worship Associate:  Chris Clifford

Music: Tim Steele

Audio Engineer: Madeleine Miller

Virtual Social Hour Host: Chris Pitt

Please see the zoom link below. 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. 

Please be on the lookout for an Order of Worship which will be emailed to you on Friday, 1/08

Sunday’s offering will be deidicated to the services and ministry of First Parish.

We’ve added the offering to the service with a new way to give- text to giving! We will continue having a social hour after services. Just stay on the Zoom worship call.  It will be good to worship together. Do join us on Sunday if you can! 

Make no mistake about it.  Yesterday’s storming of the Capitol Building was an attempted coup, incited by President Trump and countless politicians, media spokespeople and bloggers.  It should be no surprise that such a disruption ensued after years of stoking delusion, denial, hatred and disdain for civic consciousness, democratic principles and BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) equity. Make no mistake about it. This was a manifestation of the viral ideology of white supremacist culture, an ideology that is imbedded in our national DNA, and grasping for survival.

See this.  Don’t look away, or as Sufi poet, Rumi, would say: “don’t go back to sleep”. A neighbor commented this morning that she believes there cannot be healing until there is full exposure. This is an opportunity, which won’t be ever available, to see the malignancy of systemic racism. Media talks of the “catastrophic failure of security”.  No. What we saw is deeply imbedded white supremacist culture in law enforcement. All you need do is compare the police and military presence and aggression at Black Lives Matter peaceful demonstrations to see this. 

Anyone who has been paying the least bit of attention is also quite clear that if Black and Brown people stormed the Capitol yesterday, there would have been a blood bath and far more than 13 people (!!) arrested on site. There is much to unfold, examine, and investigate in the days to come.  What can we do about this in our faith community?  Talk to each other, study systemic racism, be vigilant of civic efforts toward equity and justice, strengthen in community through shared learning and common action.  Help each other, in other words, not go back to cultural sleep. This I pray.  Amen.

Rev. Lisa

Religious Exploration


Family Spirit Circle: Family Spirit Circle packets were delivered last weekend. The theme this time is releasing regrets and planting hopes as we enter a new year of possibilities. Email if you need the newsletter or would like to be added to our list of RE families.

Minecraft for All Ages: Join our ongoing group on Sunday afternoons at  4:30 pm. Please email if you would like to participate. Anyone who enjoys Minecraft is invited to come and build with us on Sunday afternoons. You will need a copy of Minecraft (Java preferred but we have a server for Bedrock players as well) and an account. Let us know if you need help getting set up.

High School Youth: We are seeking ideas for an outdoor spring youth event. Please email with suggestions or questions.

[In-person religious exploration programs are suspended until we are able to gather together safely. There will be no Sunday morning nursery care, classroom programming, or youth group activities at First Parish Milton while worship services remain virtual only. Fear not! Religious exploration is continuing as we experiment with new ideas and approaches in this time of liminal space.]


  This Sunday as we explore how we are creatures of habit, Grace Allendorf will sing a solo called “Patterns”, by David Shire and Richard Maltby, Jr. Claudia Wellington will also be singing “”Mercy Now” by Mary Gauthier”.

Table of Contents

For Events, News and Announcements 

1.   Blue Hills Climate Action Coalition 

2    Yoga

3.   Blessing Bags

4.   Cooking Classes

5.   Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.Celebration-Virtual

6    MCC

7.   Weekly Meditation

8.   Members Section of Website

9.   Racial Justice Conversations

10. Fair Foods volunteer opportunity

11. Lunch brigade & Father Bills volunteer opportunity

12. UUU Ministry Community Conversation

Events, News & Announcements

Blue Hills Climate Action Coalition presents

Climate Legislation: What’s New and What You Can Do

TODAY Thursday, January 7, 6:30 pm

Jacob Stern represents the Sierra Club MA on Mass Power Forward, a coalition of over 200 environmental leaders, community development organizations, clean energy businesses, faith groups, neighborhood health and safety advocates, and Massachusetts families fighting for our future.

The Massachusetts Legislature runs on two-year cycles. Jacob will discuss what policies are on the table for the next two years, how the legislative process works, and what residents can do to advocate for strong climate and environmental justice legislation. The Our Climate Crisis lecture series is co-sponsored by Blue Hill Observatory, Brookwood Community Farm, Friends of the Blue Hills, Mary May Binney Wakefield Arboretum, Massachusetts Audubon Society/Blue Hills Trailside Museum, Milton Public Library, Neponset River Watershed Association,  Sustainable Milton, and The Trustees/Eleanor Cabot Bradley Estate.

Brought to you by the Social and Environmental Justice Committee

Start the new year off with something that is good for body and mind with Yoga!

Monday nights 6:30-7:30pm with yoga instructor Elyse ~ virtually via Zoom

Elyse describes her yoga classes as slow flow Vinyasa with modifications offered to allow for all levels. Use your breath, poses and meditation to regulate your nervous system and allow yourself to come up for some air. This class is open to all- even  if you never attended the in-person yoga classes before!

Cost for the yoga classes: $15 for one class, or 8 for $80. If you previously paid for yoga classes that were cancelled due to the pandemic, we are honoring those payments.

If you are new and need to pay for classes, you can do so with ease from your cell phone. Text (617) 539-7576 and the amount you are paying with the word “yoga”- so a text message would say “$15 yoga”. For those of you that have already set up text giving with us, it is the same phone number and system, so you will not have to set up another account. If you haven’t set up text for giving, when you text the number, it’ll prompt you to create an account. Once you create the account, giving really is as simple as a text message. You can always mail a check to the church (putting yoga in memo line) if that is more comfortable for you.

On Monday, January 18th,  the towns of Milton and Mattapan will celebrate the life and ministry of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King by contributing to a Blessing Bag service project, offered through the MIlton Interfaith Clergy Association (MICA).

First Parish invites you to contribute to this Blessing Bag project by  purchasing and dropping off items (from the list below) at First Parish.   There are bins in the carriage house (lower parking lot), which are labeled “Blessing Bags”. You can begin dropping items off at First Parish starting Saturday, January 9th until noon on January 17.  You can also assemble full bags at home and drop them off in the bins as a family project.

The blessings bags will be brought downtown for distribution to the MANNA community duringits weekly Monday Lunch Program. This is the list of items we are collecting: 

  • white unscented barsoap
  • toothbrush
  • comb
  • shampoo
  • deodorant
  • toothpaste
  • hand lotion
  • sunblock
  • tissues
  • small hand sanitizer
  • paper face mask
  • all sized to be packed into a gallon sized freezer Ziploc bag.

Cooking Classes via Zoom !

Chili & Cornbread

January 29th 6:00pm-7:30pm

Email Debbie Alsebai at  and let her know if you would like to join this fun event!

Recipe and shopping list will be sent to you. Hope to see you there ! Brought to you from the Membership committee

Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


Monday, January 18, 2021 @ 6:30pm

2021 Theme

We Must Learn to Live Together

as Brothers and Sisters or Perish as Fools

Keynote Speaker

Reverend Irene Monroe

ordained minister and motivational speaker

Monroe does a weekly Monday segment, “All Revved Up !” on WGBH (89.7 FM),

a Boston member station of National Pulic Radio (NPR), that is now a podcast.

How to Access the Celebration

The public is invited to join the Milton Interfaith Clergy Association (MICA)

as we remember and honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Registration information will be available soon.

MILTON COMMUNITY CONCERT LIVESTREAM EVENT Please mark the date on your calendars for Milton Community Concert’s firstevent of the year, a one-hour livestream benefit concert on Sunday, January 31st at 3pm: “Still Dreaming: A Musical Tribute to MLK”.

This concert will feature a diverse and prestigious group of performers and composers in a program to benefit the Neponset Neighbors Together Fund through the UnitedWay. Stay tuned for more information on this exciting online concert, which is being produced in collaboration with Courageous Conversations for RacialJustice (

Meditation continues ….

All are welcome to join for 30 minutes of silent meditation/prayer on:

Thursday evenings at 7:00pm 

Sunday mornings at 9:30am

Newcomers and friends welcome.

Please contact Tracey at if you have questions or want to join us!  

Member Section of Website

In the past year, we’ve seen an uptick of scammers/hackers, posing as Rev. Lisa Ward and asking congregants for items- money, gift cards, etc. This is a national problem of all religious denominations, and because of its prevalence, recommendations have been made on how to best protect us from these cyber atacks. We have reviewed our website security, server safeguards, zoom security protections, etc. 

We have decided that one big things we can do to safeguard member’s info is to remove the Church Directory from the member’s section of the website. It is simply too big of a target. 

However- we have hard copies of the directory available for anyone who needs it, as well as a PDF that can be easily emailed. You can email Susan at if you’d like me get either (or both!) of these items to you.

Racial Justice Focus GroupConversations by Zoom with Rev. Lisa, Timothy Ellis and Debbie Alsebaimeets on the 2nd & 4th Wednesdays monthlyAll are Welcome!

Next Session: Wednesday, January 13, 7:00pm – 8:30 pm

This focus group has been meeting since August. Each session is rich with stories, insights, questions, learning, re-learning, sharing of resources, sharing of wisdom. Each session stands alone, so you are welcome to attend at any meeting. Consistent attendance helps deepen trust and exploration. Dismantling systemic racism in ourselves and communities occurs incrementally, discovery by discovery. We recognize the importance of this life-long journey toward transformation and that it is a shared endeavor.  Contact the office to receive the zoom link:

 Fair Foods is a non-profit program that rescues fresh produce that would otherwise be wasted and uses it to feed our communities. We volunteer together unloading and sorting food and packing bags on the 2nd Saturday of every month, starting at roughly 9 a.m.

Next session is Saturday, January 9th

If you want to volunteer, please text or e-mail Tony Dutzik at 617-291-4685 or  by Thursday evening before the event. Start time  and locations vary depending on Fair Foods’ needs, but volunteering typically takes place at First Parish Dorchester, 10 Parish St. in Dorchester, near Fields Corner, or at Fair Foods’ new warehouse in South Boston. Please wear a mask and bring gloves if you have them.

As of this week, First Parish members have made 1,737 lunches for the clients of MainSpring House in Brockton and Evelyn House in Stoughton. With much gratitude to all the lunch makers who have contributed to this ongoing effort since March. We hear that the clients appreciate our nutritional meals.”

Volunteers are needed on January 13th. Volunteers acquire food and pack 10-20 lunches and deliver to the church between 12:45-1pm on Delivery day. One team lead drives all the lunches to the shelter in Brockton.

 If you can help, please contact Peter Schneider at for instructions or if you already know the drill, signup on our Mainspring Signup

Genius – please indicate number of lunches you will bring.

Tune in to UU Urban Ministry Community Conversation Several months ago, the Rev Mary Margaret Earl joined our worship service to share news from the Urban Ministry at First Church in Roxbury.  She invited us to participate in a series of Community Conversations organized by the Urban Ministry.

The next Conversation is on January 26: “What’s Happening to Roxbury: A Conversation on Gentrification and Displacement,” featuring Roxbury Native, Marisa Luse, a life-long Roxbury resident who considers her neighborhood the “village” that nurtured and raised her. She has extensive nonprofit management, community engagement and civic leadership experience. Tune in from 6 to 7:30 on the 26th. Link coming soon! 

Special thanks to Conversation sponsor First Parish in LexingtonBrought to you by the Social and Environmental Justice Committee