This Week in Worship
Sunday, November 24th, 2019
“Equality in Diversity”
Rev. Lisa Ward
With the impeachment hearings flooding the airwaves, the dread of a divided nation hovers about us. As the lack of civility and utter disregard for the truth infects this constitutional process, the fear of a broken government looms large. There remains, as well, dedicated service, emergence and welcome of truth, honor of the constitutional framework and perseverance for the sake of the nation’s health. We see this in the earnest testimonies, in the many hours of inquiry, in the dogged continuance of discernment despite mocking tweets, irresponsible innuendo, and character defamation. We have no idea what the outcome will be, though we do know that this stress test of our democracy needs our attention.
Now this may seem like a leap for some, but others may feel a resonance in the above dysfunctional dwelling in diversity to the prospect of next week’s Thanksgiving dinner with extended family. There are many households who brave unnerving divisions; not only in politics, but in religion, sexual and gender identities, ethnicity, and life choices. Abundance in diversity can be exhilarating as well as daunting when sitting down to Thanksgiving dinner. How do we navigate difference? How do we, in the sentiment attributed to sixteenth century Unitarian forebear Francis David, love alike even when we don’t think alike? The place for peace in larger society begins in our hearts and homes.
This is, of course, a continuous practice and learning curve, but I offer a few possible inroads to holding and engaging in the adventure. Start with these three g’s: gratitude, grounding and generosity.
Gratitude: Take time to notice the bounty of food brought together and the shared work to get it there. Remind yourself that people have taken time to come together. Notice what is good and beautiful in the room.
Grounding: In a challenging discussion, ask yourself how important it is to you to agree or be right. Is it a caring or competitive conversation? Remember that “no” or “not ready to talk about that” are full sentences (no need for explanation) if you feel intruded upon.
Generosity: Is there listening or lecturing (by either of you). Is there room for both of you? How urgent is this? Can you give it time to evolve?
May you feel moments of bounty in spirit and companionship. Believe in the ground of your being.
Blessings Be, Rev. Lisa
Congregational Discernment Toward Installing Solar Panels
We are progressing toward a congregational vote scheduled for Sunday,
A brief summary of the proposal is posted at the end of the link hallway. An executive summary is available upon request. We have also sent this information via email to members and contributing friends.
Mark your calendars for a presentation by Isaac Baker of Resonant, Inc after worship service on December 8.
It is important that we discern this project together before the vote. We
have set up opportunities for smaller groups to meet and discuss the plan. All ages are welcome in this discernment. Parents: please feel free to encourage your youth to share their opinion.
Please click on the link below to sign up for your listening circle:
Nursery care will be available from 10:15 to 11:45 am in the Link hallway for infants and toddlers up through age 3.
Religious Exploration classes will meet on Sunday, November 24. All children from preschool through grade 7 will begin in the Meetinghouse and then move downstairs to their classrooms.
- Preschool through grade 1 will be enjoying Spirit Play in the Preschool classroom. The story this week will be Small Fry for Principle 3: Our churches are places where all people are accepted and we keep learning together.
- Grades 2 and 3 will be exploring the UU Principles during the fall and the Passages program beginning in January, meeting in the Juniors classroom. This week they will read The Butter Battle as they discuss Principle 6: We should work for a peaceful, fair and free world.
- Grades 4 through 7 will be continuing the two-year Friends and Neighbors curriculum, learning about various faith traditions through videos and visitors. Our focus this week will be on the Hindu concepts of reincarnation (samsara), dharma, karma and moksha. This group meets in the Activity room.
- Grade 8 will be participating in the Coming of Age program this year.
Please register your child or youth for RE classes! The Religious Exploration Committee requests all families to register your child or youth. Please use this link to our online form: Online registration form (or paper registration forms are available on the RE bulletin board in the Link hallway).
Youth Chat (for grades 8 through 12) will meet on Sunday, November 24th. Youth are invited to begin arriving at 10 am to make a hot beverage and settle in. Formal Youth Chat programming runs from 10:30 to 11:30 am. This week we will be continuing our discussion and discernment of youth social action initiatives for the year! We will be joined by a representative from the Social Action Committee to collaborate with us around existing initiatives here at First Parish.
Coming of Age (for grades 8 through 10) will meet on Sunday, November 24th from noon to 1:30 pm. This week we will be diving deep into examining our Unitarian Universalist values. How do we define them? How can we apply the 7 Principles to our lives? Come to start searching for answers to these questions and more!
Potential Youth Hike, December 1st (for grades 8 through 12) All youth, Coming of Age mentors, and parents are invited on this lovely hike in the Blue Hills! Come enjoy nature and one another’s company as we enjoy a romp through the woods. It would occur after church at 12pm. Currently the hike is tentative. We need participants to RSVP if they would like to join so we can judge whether or not we have people interested and bale to join. Please let Sara Elizabeth know by this coming Sunday, November 24th, if you are interested either in person or via email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
This Sunday we will be hearing some music for mandolin and guitar, featuring the talents of Karl Pastore and Owen Hartford. Cuban-American singer Zaray Rodriguez Rossi will be a guest soloist in two selections, including a song from IN THE HEIGHTS by Lin-Manuel Miranda called “Breathe”.
Events, News and Announcements
Theology On Tap Returns
Thursday, November 21, 2019
Prime Pizza, 88 Wharf St. Milton
6:00pm – 7:30pm
Join fellow First Parishioners for a lively and informative discussion around current challenges – moral, social, religious, etc.
This will be the second Theology on Tap offering. Those who attended the gathering last June found it interesting, compelling, and delicious. We enjoyed beverages and sustenance (Dutch treat) as well as conversation.
Tomorrow! Create fun and decorative holiday crafts! Everyone of all ages can join in to make a flurry of handcrafted items from 6:00 to 8:00 pm on Friday, November 22. All materials will be supplied, just add your creative imagination! Homemade soups will be accompanied by bread and fruit. No cost to attend. Hosted by the Religious Exploration Committee.
MILTON COMMUNITY CONCERT THIS SATURDAY
On Saturday evening, November 23rd at 7pm Milton Community Concerts presents cabaret artist Ute Gfrerer, who will be presenting “Weill/Lenya: An Unusual Love Story”. Ms. Gfrerer has performed on stages all over the world, and is widely considered one of the foremost interpreters of Kurt Weill’s music. Tickets are $20 general/$15 senior/Free for 18 and under.
Christmas is coming!
Christmas Tree Order Forms can be found this Sunday in your Order of Worship.
If you’d like an order form emailed to you, please email the office at email@example.com.
Trees are 6-7 Frasier Firs from Sibgo Family Farm in New Hamshire. Cost is $65. Pick-up times are Saturday, December 7th from 9:00am-1:00pm; December 8 from 11:45am-1:30pm. Weekday pick-up’s can also be arranged with the office. Proceeds go to First Parish. Thank you!
LET US CONTEMPLATE THANKSGIVING “LITE”(ER)
What if everyone in the U.S.A. ate 25% less meat (beef, pork, poultry, or lamb) and substituted quality plant proteins such as tofu, lentils, soybeans, or peanuts?
The average American consumes nearly 215 pounds of red meat per person per year so, for starters, public health would improve. Following are some other possible, planetary ramifications of eating less meat:
- SAVE 82 MILLION METRIC TONS OF GREENHOUSE GAS (GHG) EMISSIONS (SLIGHTLY REDUCE NITROGEN (Nr) INPUTS, WHETHER FROM ANIMAL MANURE OR FERTILIZER
- FREE UP ABOUT 23 MILLION ACRES OF HIGH-QUALITY PASTURELAND EQUIVALENT TO INDIANA-SIZED LAND MASS.
- PLANT FORESTS TO SINK/STORE CARBON DIOXIDE.
- GROW MORE LENTILS & PEANUTS TO FEED RISING GLOBAL POPULATION
Connecting the dots to First Parish, let’s think about our individual and collective (potluck or event) menu choices in the year ahead. Please share any favorite recipes for tofu, lentils, soybeans, and peanuts — and check out Green Action Team’s bulletin board in the Link corridor.
Gratitude Sanctuary: A spiritual alternative to “Black Friday”
November 29, 1-5pm in Parish Hall.
Part of working for environmental justice is looking at consumer habits. In this way, practicing gratitude can be an act of resistance! When we create space to deeply contemplate the blessing of life, our humble hearts can be filled with deep joy for being. You are invited to bring one item for a gratitude altar as well as journals, dream/vision boards, or any other contemplative project that makes your heart hum. We will begin and end with singing and sharing, and the heart of our time together will be for silent meditation/individual project work. All ages welcome.
Please let us know (firstname.lastname@example.org) if childcare is needed by Thursday, 11/21. 617-698-632
Questions? Contact Jennie Mulqueen: email@example.com
World Market Holiday Craft Fair
December 7th, 2019
SAVE THE DATE.!!
First Parish members: Our World Market Holiday Craft Fair is coming!! This year, we are doing something new; we have invited local artisans to come and offer their crafts for holiday purchasing. In addition, we will have our usual tasty assortment of Equal Exchange Fair Trade items — coffees, teas and cocoa — plus new items from a co-op of West Bank farmers which includes dates, nuts, olive oil and couscous. Also new this year: CHOCOLATE from Goodnow Farms.
There will be holiday music and treats to nibble while you shop and socialize with friends old and new.
Local crafters encouraged to contact the
church for an application. Crafts only,
no food or mass-produced items.
$35 per table
Shopping for Social Justice
Located in the heart of Roxbury’s Dudley Square Shopping District, Black Market was established by Chris and Kai Grant to help eradicate Boston’s wealth gap by providing “pop-up market” space for local entrepreneurs — to thrive and generate wealth within the Roxbury community and to create pathways for new and creative income opportunities for local entrepreneurs. Join friends from First Parish and others from the UU Urban Ministry community on December 8 at 2:00pm to explore the Black Market and find special holiday gifts for your friends and family. Please sign-up at the Social Justice table during coffee hour this week and let’s gather a good crowd to support this exciting endeavor. For those interested in carpooling (let’s save gas y’all) we will meet in the back parking lot of FPM at 1:30pm on Sunday, Dec 8. Please JOIN US!
Fair Foods is a nonprofit organization that rescues nutritious wholesale fruits and vegetables about to be discarded for distribution to members of the community. Join First Parish’s Social Justice Committee for our monthly volunteer day with Fair Foods at the Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry, 10 Putnam St. in Roxbury. Arrive in Roxbury at 10:30 or e-mail Tony Dutzik at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to join a carpool leaving from First Parish at 10 a.m. or if you have any questions. Upcoming dates include the following Saturdays: December 14 and January 11.
Coming this spring: The First Parish Auction on March 28, 2020!
Traditionally held on a biannual basis, we are now gearing up for the 2020 auction. And that means volunteers – LOTS of them. We need folks to work on Donations, Food and Beverage, Music and Entertainment, Decorations, Check out and Operations, Publicity, and Online. This is truly an all church effort. Won’t you join us?
June 24, 2020-June 29, 2020, Providence RI
Early Bird Registration is now Open!
Click here for more informaiton.
Snow Cancellation Information:
If the Milton Public Schools close for snow, so does First Parish. Sundays we realize are trickier. We will call it by 8 a.m. on Sunday. Look for cancellations in three places. If you don’t see cancellation information, we are open.
~Channel 5, WCVB television. Look for First Parish – Milton. Check their website if you want to get automatic, direct notification through the TV station. www.wcvb.com.
~Check our Facebook page. First Parish Milton UU. We will post cancellations there. Our Facebook page also feeds our Twitter account @FPMilton.
~Check our website, www.fpmilton.org. We put a banner on the home page with closing information.