Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 3/21/2014

Weekly Link 3-21-14

We Welcome All

March Worship Theme


How we move forward after a break or hurt in a relationship makes all the difference. How do we ask for and seek forgiveness? How do we let go of past hurts so we can move forward ourselves? And what happens when what happened will never be “okay”? The wisdom of the season of Lent, the spiritual preparations for the Persian New Year, and the stories of our lives intersect powerfully this month for our shared reflection.

This Week in Worship

Sunday, March 23,  2014

10:30am   WORSHIP


Rev. Bob McKetchnie and music by Tim Steele

Thomas Mann once said, “sin” is nowadays “an amusing word used only when one is trying to get a laugh.” Today’s sermon will explore whether the concept of sin is meaningful to contemporary ways of thinking and speaking and what it says about our need to offer and receive forgiveness.

Bob McKetchnie is visiting us today from Providence, RI. and is looking forward to General Assembly gathering in June right across the street from his apartment! He currently serves the Murray Unitarian Universalist Church in Attleboro, MA. He graduated Andover Newton Theological School (ANTS) and was ordained in the year 2000 after spending 18 years in the financial/data processing industry. Bob has twin sons who are 22 years of age.

Do you have a story you would like to share about what it was like to complete your service pledge?  If so, please send an email with “Service Pledge” in the subject line to Rev. Parisa at – She would like to include testimonials in upcoming worship services.

Do you have a new infant you would like to dedicate to the care of the First Parish Community?  An older child who is new to the community or never had a dedication whom you would like us to welcome formally into the spiritual care of this congregation?  Please send an email to Rev. Parisa (subject line: Dedication) at  – we will have our annual child dedication ceremony on Sunday, June 8.

Religious Exploration

Sunday, March 23, 2014

This Sunday,Children will start at the Meetinghouse before being dismissed to there classes.

Passages and Neighboring Faiths will go directly to their class room.

Youth chat will gather in the youth room.

Nursery is available for children ages 4 and younger.

If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact the office at


A gentle reminder that for safety reasons, our policy for pick-up from Religious Exploration classes is that children will not be released until a parent has come to get them. After worship is finished, please make your way to your child(ren)’s classes to pick them up. We want to make sure that all children are accounted for and parents know where they are. Thanks for helping us with this!

News and Announcements

Annual Budget Drive FY15

A note from the Stewardship Working Group

Dear Friend in Faith,

This is the final week of First Parish’s Annual Budget Drive. The financial support of First Parish members like you makes possible lively Sunday worship and music, religious exploration for all ages, social action that benefits our community, and the preservation of our beautiful and historic campus.

If you can make a pledge this year to support First Parish, please let us know by March 23 by filling out a pledge card and returning it to the church office. If you need a pledge card, or have questions about pledging, please call the church office or e-mail Kiki Giatis at Please be as generous as possible.

We are grateful to the 71 households that have already made their commitment to the Annual Budget Drive FY2015. As of March 18, we have raised $187,560.00 (72%) of our goal of $260,000. Thank you for your generosity! A final listing of those that have pledge will be in next week’s Link and Sunday announcements. In late April/early May, you will receive a letter from the office confirming your pledge amount and updated information on automatic payment options.

The Stewardship Working Group
Mike Bello, Tony Dutzik, Dottie Pitt, Tracey Robinson

The Art/Creativity Salon This Friday, March 21

A monthly gathering for people to explore different kinds of art in a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere. Each month, different members will introduce a new art technique, material, or concept for the group to try without the pressure of preconceived notions of success. The goal is to simply play and see what develops. Discover a talent you didn’t know about, find a new art-buddy who speaks your language. Join us!


3rd Fridays, 7PM

For those who were not able to come in February, we will be revisiting those Surrealist games that we didn’t get to last meeting because our brainstorming was too fun to stop. Come by for fun and creativity, dive into the creative unconscious!

Examples of surrealist art games:

Circle Suppers in March!

Last call for circle supper on Sunday March 30. Sign up at the Membership Table at the Committee Fair. Stay tuned for more dates in May.

We Hold in Our Hearts…

We send our deepest sympathies to Mary Blanchette and her family on the recent death of her brother Jack.


Have you ever wondered how First Parish works? Are you new to First Parish and wonder how members of the congregation become involved in worship, or, how week after week, wonderful goodies appear at Social Hour? Or, have you been around First Parish for a while and wonder how decisions are made that affect everything from new paint to new religious education programs? Whatever your experience, we’d love to have you learn even more about First Parish at Committee Fair this Sunday during Social Hour. Please join us — munch and learn and enjoy!

Celebration of Ostara, Saturday, March 22 7pm in the Parish Hall

Under the category of “Never Have We Needed It More”, the FP Earth Centered Spirituality Group will host a Celebration of Ostara, the Spring Equinox on Saturday, March 22, at 7pm in the Parish Hall.

The name of the Anglo-Saxon goddess Eostre was adopted in England for the Christian holiday of Easter, which falls on the Sunday after the full moon following the spring equinox.

Please join us as we bring in Spring and new growth without and within with a planting ritual, group prayers, readings and music.

Following the ritual, all are welcome to stay for a Pot Luck social hour. For more information please contact Pam Dorsey at 617-698-0057 or Mark Whall.

Franc Graham Hosting Coffeehouse Concert, Wednesday, March 26

Please join First Parish’s own Franc Graham as she hosts the first Coffeehouse Open Mic show at the Milton Art Center on Wednesday night, March 26. The evening will remind you of the recent terrific Cafe Blue Hills experience. The show starts at 7 pm and admission is free. The Milton Art Center is located at 334 Edge Hill Road, right next to the post office in East Milton Square.

New Theater Group Starting!

We are blessed to live so close to Boston and have so many theater companies in our midst. Theater is a great way to get out, be entertained and think!

On Thursday, March 27 at 7:30 or March 29 at 4:00 we are going to kick off the First Parish Theater Group by going to see “The Whale” at the Boston Center for the Arts at 527 Tremont St in Boston. This is the New England Premiere of the 2013 Lortel Winner –BEST PLAY. It stars some of Boston’s best actors (John Kuntz, Maureen Keiller and Georgia Lyman) and runs for 1 hour and 50 minutes with no intermission. If folks are up to it we can get a quick bite to eat at a next door restaurant and chat about the play afterwards. Please let me know if you are interested in being part of this group and if either of these dates would work for you. I am so excited to share my love of theater with new and old friends at First Parish!!
“The Whale” Charlie has hidden himself away in his Northern Idaho apartment and is quietly eating himself to death in the wake of a personal tragedy. With his health deteriorating, Charlie makes one last desperate attempt to connect with his estranged daughter Ellie, a sharp-tongued and wildly unhappy teen whom he has not seen in 15 years. As Charlie embarks on his quest for redemption, he looks to his enabling caregiver Liz, ex-wife Mary, and Mormon missionary Elder Thomas for closure, meaning, and forgiveness.
If you have questions and/or want to reserve tickets please contact Debbie Alsebai

Follow Rev Eric Dawson on Twitter:

Starting this week I will be sharing weekly twitter “sermons”: reflections on life and purpose. I’m not sure if I can boil things down to 140 characters, but I’m excited to try. I invite you to follow me HERE.

Music Lovers…Take Note!
It was recently discovered that our beloved First Parish organ is in need of a fairly major repair. In order to help get this costly job done without breaking our bank, the Music Committee is cooking up some opportunities for you to participate in this cause. We had a successful Cafe Blue Hills event recently raising $1,170.00. Thanks for all those that participated and donated. Stay Yuned for more!


Music Lovers…Take Note!

It was recently discovered that our beloved First Parish organ is in need of a fairly major repair. In order to help get this costly job done without breaking our bank, the Music Committee is cooking up some opportunities for you to participate in this cause. We had a successful Cafe Blue Hills event recently raising $1,1700.00. Thanks for all those that participated and donated. Stay tuned for more!


Luminaria, a woman’s a cappella group originally formed from a First Parish small group ministry, has now been singing for nursing home and hospice patients for about two years. If you know of anyone who might benefit from this caring music ministry, we’d love to offer our services. Call Patricia Ostrem at 617-696-4186.

From Brian Kelley for The Run Again Project

Dear First Parish family and friends,

This is an invitation to join us in helping Boston run again. With the tragic events of last year’s marathon imbedded in our thoughts, and soon to be flooding the airwaves again, it is our hope that we can take some of the attention away from the images of the disaster and place it back on the runners. These are the people, who despite all odds, are helping Boston, and beyond, run again. Many thought last year would be their last marathon, but they are returning in light of the tragedy. Please check out our website and join us in a letter writing campaign.

It is our hope that schools and religious education classes will begin a discussion on setting goals after challenges leave us short of reaching them. Taking their inspiration from the runners, the students can write a letter or share a story of how they overcame an obstacle, or how they are reexamining and recommitting to a new goal this year in honor of a marathoner. We encourage teachers to have the children think about how helping others can help us get back on track too. All letters will become public and will be reviewed, scanned, and posted to our web site. Students can choose to remain anonymous if they wish. It is a simple way to make a big difference. Imagine how proud the runners will feel after they cross the finish line to be able to go online and view notes from children around the State or Country? We hope you will join us in helping Boston run again.

Kathleen Ready
Brian Kelley

Jericho Road Roxbury is off to a great start this year!

We want you to get involved:

Take the survey. Let us know what skills you can share with a Roxbury non-profit.

Help FP Milton reach our goal.

We are just $1,000 shy of our $7,000 goal.

(Write ‘JRRoxbury & FPMilton’ in the optional designation box).

Learn more about Jericho Road Roxbury


Kiki’s Corner

I will be away the next two Sundays, March 23 and March 30. You can always email me at or give me a call during the week if you want to check in. I am generally around Monday – Thursday between 10 and 4.


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


Worship, 10:30am in the Meetinghouse

Silent Prayer & Meditation, 9:00am in the Children’s Church


Please consider volunteering for important Sunday worship positions like ushering, hosting social hour, providing flowers for worship, and lighting the chalice. The link to SignUp Genius is:

Sign Up Here!