Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 10/15/2020

Weekly Link 10-15-2020

This Week in Virtual Worship

Sunday, October 18, 2020 10:30am

“A Living Democracy

Facilitated by: Rev. Lisa Ward

Worship Associate:  Penny Partridge

Music: Tim Steele  

Virtual Social Hour Host: Chris PittPlease 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, 10/16.

Sunday’s offering will go to Reclaim Our Vote.  Reclaim Our Vote empowers purged voters of color in eight southern states. Through mailing postcards, phone banking, texts and billboards, their goal is to increase voting in areas where voter suppression is high. This nonpartisan campaign has partnered with the NAACP, Black Voters Matter, Mi Familia Vota and UU the Vote.  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! 

Table of Contents

1.Milton Domestic Violence Prayer Vigil

2.All Church Council Meeting

3.The Great Pumpkin Event

4. The UU Urban Ministry presents: Community Conversations

5. Harvest the Power Week of Action

6. Fun October Happenings

7. Racial Justice Conversations

8. In Person Check-in Chats with Minister

9. Volunteers Needed

10. Father Bills volunteer opportunity

11. Fair Foods volunteer opportunity

12. Yoga

13. Weekly Meditation 

At the writing of this column, there are 19 more days till the USA National Election.  I do not remember a time when the subject of voting has been as vibrant, as urgent, as discussed as this election.  Multitudes are entering into a new awakening that voting – their voting – matters.  I’ve heard more people, from many walks of life, speak of their civic duty; that, indeed, the health of a democracy depends upon  it. 

This does not happen by chance.  It happens by intention and vigilance. A hundred years ago, as a woman, I would not have been included.  Sixty years ago, many African Americans were actively excluded. The attempt for voter suppression still exists among us in this nation today, as people cynically attempt to manipulate the process and force a certain outcome or silence a certain people. This is why many First Parish congregants have been active in encouraging voter participation, including information campaigns to help those who may be disenfranchised.  Over 2000 postcards were sent in just one of the non-partisan campaigns that congregants have participated in. Well done.

The democratic process is a part of the fifth principle of Unitarian Universalism because it supports a system of relating that promotes one’s inherent dignity. The core value of the spirit of democracy is that the wisdom for collective understanding and wellness in community comes from our authentic engagement. Democracy honors the collective endeavor by claiming each participant as essential to the full understanding of the whole of our lives together.

It is essential that we keep vigilant, persistent, and intentional about the democratic process.  Please vote.  Please encourage others to vote.  Please advocate against any measures that suppress another’s vote.

In Faith, Rev. Lisa

Religious Exploration

Family Spirit Circle: Packets will be delivered this weekend to families of elementary school or younger children on the theme of Fall Bounty. Each packet contains a heap of colorful items to use in creating fall decorations and suggestions for a family ritual to celebrate the gifts of fall. See the coordinating family newsletter for a link to one of my favorite fall stories, Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert, and a link to a great rendition of “September” by Earth, Wind & Fire. Families are encouraged to post photos of your completed decorations on our Padlet page so we can all see each other’s creations! And don’t forget to drop off your chalice to share in the bin inside the carriage sheds. Email if you need the newsletter or would like to be added to our list of RE families.

Middle School Connections: Youth are encouraged to contribute a scarecrow to The Great Pumpkin Event this Saturday morning. See a separate Link article for the details of this fun event being planned by the Communications Committee.

Youth Group: The youth are excited to be planning an outdoor version of their ever-popular Haunted Hallway, usually held during the annual Halloween party. Our hope is to offer a Creepy Carriage House walk on October 24 from 6:30 to 7:30 pm. Come in costume or not and experience the frights and delights the youth will provide. Safe physical distancing will be maintained during the walk by. More details will be coming next week.

[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.]

~ Our bodies may not be touching, but our hearts are still connected.~

OUR MUSIC THIS SUNDAY:  This coming week Grace Allendorf and Melissa Joseph will be singing the duet “I Have a Dream”, words and music by Mary Donnelly, arranged by George L.O. Strid. Mary Donnelly, a native of Reno, Nevada, studied at the University of Nevada, Reno and at Lesley College in Cambridge, MA. Franc Graham will be singing “Ring Them Bells”, words and music by Bob Dylan.

Events, news and announcements

Milton Domestic Violence Prayer Vigil

In Memory of Loved Ones Taken by Domestic Violence and in Honor of Those who Survive Domestic Abuse

  WhenTODAY Thursday, October 15, 2020, at 6:00 PM

Virtual Prayer Vigil Hosted By:  Parkway United Methodist Church

158 Blue Hills Pkwy, Milton, MA 02186

Contact: (617) 698-8583 for more information

The waiting is over …It is time for theFall All Church Council

Friday, October 16th – 6:00 pm-7:30 pm

Each autumn, the Parish Committee sponsors an All Church Council for church leadership to share ideas and plans for the year – and so we can connect with each other.  Sadly we will not be able to meet over dinner – like we usually do but we will still gather using ZOOM (see link below) — you are welcome to provide your own libations for a fun Friday evening with your church friends! All committee and task group chairs (or their representatives) are asked to attend. The gathering is open to all church members and friends. Please RSVP to the church office.

“The Great Pumpkin Event”

Saturday, October 17 from 10 am to 12 pm

(Rain date: Sunday, October 18 from 12-2 pm) on First Parish’s green.  Gather All, Young and Young-At-Heart, to build a fall display of special  scarecrows holding “VOTE” signs (non-partisan messages-of course!) amid hay bales and pumpkins. Let’s show Milton that we are spirited, lively and civic-minded!  You may join the fun in a few ways-all COVID-safe: Participate in person this Saturday, October 17 from 10-12 on FP green. Bring a hat, long sleeve shirt and long pants to stuff for your scarecrow! (Adult or child-sized.) Signs and decorating materials will be provided. Sign-up Genius. (Link) Limit:30 Make a scarecrow at home and drop it off Saturday between 10:00 am & 12:00 pm.  Drop off pumpkins and gourds to accent the scarecrow display, anytime from Saturday, October 17th through October 31st-Halloween!

Questions? Ask Lynne Stack at or (508) 944-4014

Brought to you by the new ad hoc committee: Communication Committee (aka: CommComm) Dana Clancy, Franc Graham, Jenny Pinkus and Lynne Stack

The UU Urban Ministry presents:

Community Conversations

First Church Roxbury and the Neighborhood:  A History featuring historian and former State Representative Byron Rushing

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

6:00 pm- 7:30 pm

Lecture and Facilitated Q & A

Call-in details available at

We’re inviting everyone to join us for a week of action to harvest thepower! Running Wednesday, October 21st through Tuesday, October 27th, thisis one of our final pushes to ensure we reach 1,000,000 voters beforeElection Day. Join us! See the link for details

Brought to you by the Social and Environmetal Justice Committee

Pizza Making via Zoom Friday, October 23 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM Pizza Pizza Get those aprons out and get ready to impress the family ! Miss Debbie will teach you how to make pizza crust and show you how to make a red based tomato sauce and a white sauce. Let’s get creative with toppings too. What would you like to see On your pizza?   Email Debbie Alsebai at  and let her know if you would like to join this fun event !     

Creepy Carriage House WalkSaturday, October 24, 6:30pm-7:30pm Plans are underway for the youth group to bring us, once again, a haunted “hallway”.  This year it will be outside, in the parking lot by the carriage house. Covid restrictions and design plans are underway.  Stay tuned for more information closer to the event.

First Parish Presents Virtual Halloween Open-Mic

Stories, Music, Poetry, and Maybe More

Theme: Trick or Treat

Costumes are optional but encouraged.

Saturday, October 31, 7pm-9pm

Attendees who want to tell a story, play a song, read a poem, or otherwise share the fruits of their creative labor, can send a chat to the hosts at the start of the show to put their name in the hat. The hosts will randomly pick names, one at a time, and ask that person to unmute themselves. For the next 5-10 minutes, you will have the virtual stage.

Racial Justice Focus Group

Bi-weekly Conversations by Zoom with Rev. Lisa and Debbie Alsebai Next Session:

Wednesday, October 28, 7:00pm – 8:30 pm

The isolation due to Covid-19 and the stark, unequivocal events of racial injustice in this nation has encouraged a widespread willingness to examine what is needed for true equity and justice for all. Let’s answer the call.Part of the work is seeing more clearly. This does not call for shame and blame, but for the courage of discomfort and openness to new choices and new changes. What does it mean that history is white washed? How does white privilege play out, even among well-meaning liberals? What is the networking of systemic racism? We’ll meet every other week to share stories, examine articles and short videos, and encourage one another to further see the culture we have been taught to navigate. This is a hope-filled endeavor.Please join us and invite your friends. A zoom link will be sent out the week of the conversation. Interested?  Contact the office:


New Dates Added!

(Have mask will travel, while the weather is good)

As we will remain in physically distanced community, exploring ways to connect through cyberspace most likely through 2020, I’d like to check-in with as many members and friends of First Parish who would like a physical visit or a brief time together outside on our campus. 

On Campus:

 Adirondack chairs, lovingly crafted by Karl Pastore, will be set out in a safely distanced circle for a 45 minute chat. 

I have set aside Thursdays, from 4:00pm-6:00pm for folk to come on by, by appointment.  We can have as many as four people meet together.

We meet for 45 minutes, which gives me 15 minutes to sanitize the chairs for the next small gathering.  Masks required.  We will honor the 6 foot distance.

Here is the sign-up genius for those meetings.

At your home:

Have mask will travel:  I am open to house calls.  We can meet outside your home.  Masks required.  We will honor the 6 foot distance. If you are interested in a visit to your home, please contact me at

All ages welcome for a check-in.  Minors must have a parent or guardian present. 

It is good to be with one another.

First Parish will continue to have Zoom social hours while the church services are remote.  If you haven’t attended, you should!It’s a great way to touch base with friends, old and new. In order to keep this going, we need your help!  Please sign up to hostone or more social hours this fall.  If you love doing it,the more dates the better!  (If you haven’t done it yet, we’ll providetraining.) Please sign up!

Please click here for more info on hosting.

Mainspring lunch program – HELP needed! 

 Volunteers are needed on October 21st and November 4th.  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 website – please indicate number of lunches you will bring.

Fair Foods is a non-profit program that rescues fresh produce that would otherwise be wasted and uses it to feed our communities. The beginning of the new church year brings the return of a regular Fair Foods volunteer schedule for First Parish. We will volunteer together the 2nd Saturday of every month, starting at roughly 10 a.m at First Parish Dorchester, 10Parish St. in Dorchester, near Fields Corner.