Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 3/25/2021

Weekly Link 3-25-2021

This Week in Virtual Worship

Sunday, March 28, 2021 10:30am

March Theme: Courage

“Good Trouble”

Palm Sunday

Facilitated by:  Rev. Lisa Ward

Worship Associate:  Elise Henricks

Music:  Tim Steele

Audio Engineer:  Brynne Mershon

Virtual Social Hour Host: Lisa WhitePlease 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, 3/26 Third Sunday’s offering will be dedicated to the services and ministry of First Parish.  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!

I was speaking with a colleague the other day whose young adult daughter works at the Colorado supermarket where ten people were gunned down on March 22. She was not working that day, though now she endures the terror and the loss of many co-workers.  Shudders of the Columbine shooting decades ago rose to the surface in the nervous system of the state, with a familiar dread that runs deep and wide.  Still no national comprehensive gun control. 

Another young adult in another state commented to me, in this week of two mass shootings, that he is losing hope that anything will ever change or that people will find a way to live and let live.  I responded with a tempered idealism, though understood, with my own dread, his diminishing hope.

We are all bone-tired from the pandemic and most of us have frayed nerves from time to time.  Holding onto the vision of a just and compassionate world can sometimes feel hollow, when we observe a lack of political response to violence and systemic racism, dynamics highlighted in the two mass shootings this last week.

What I see, however, is that these issues are being raised more often in mainstream media.  I see more and more people of varied identities and life stories speaking truth to power.  I see organizations doubling down on advocacy for the disempowered.  I see art and music filling our airwaves and sensibilities with wondrous variety, strength and courage.

If we keep on keeping on, we will find our way.  Things are shifting.  We need to mourn, we need to rest, we might even need to take a break.  But then we enter again in the hope-filled work of building a just and healthy world.

This I pray. Amen.  Rev. Lisa


Religious Exploration

Family Spirit Circle: Family Spirit Circle packets were delivered this past weekend on the theme of Creativity. Feedback from families demonstrates just how creative it is possible to be with simple craft materials! We celebrate the spirit of innovation, imagination, and playfulness in each of us and applaud those daring enough to try new ways of expressing their individual creativity through everyday tasks and choices.

Email if you need the family spirit circle newsletter or would like to be added to our distribution list of RE families.

Minecraft for All Ages: Minecraft is on break until after Easter Sunday. We will be sending out a poll to determine if there is enough ongoing interest to continue this group now that the spring weather is tempting us all to head outdoors on Sunday afternoons!

Middle and High School Youth: The Youth Visionary Volunteers are looking into potential service initiatives for youth in April and May. Youth are encouraged to attend the ‘Getting to Zero’ conversations online on April 21 and May 5. Also coming up is the ‘25 Days of Walking’ campaign in support of the 25th Louis D. Brown Peace Institute’s Motherhood March for Peace (the 25 days are from April 5 to May 7, with an online finale on May 9th at 9:00 am).

We welcome suggestions for youth programming opportunities, especially regarding possible social justice youth activities.

[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.


This week we are happy to welcome back our guest soloist, Daon Drisdom. Daon will be singing “I Dream A World” by Uzee Brown, Jr., with text by Langston Hughes. Our choir has performed several anthems by Mr. Brown over the years. He is chairman of the music department at Morehouse College in

Atlanta, GA and is an active singer himself. You will also hear an arrangement of the African American spiritual “Wade In The Water”, with Karl Pastore on guitar along with vocalists Lisa Ward, Pat Neves, Claudia Wellington, and Franc Graham.

Table of Contents

For Events, News and Announcements 

1.   Chruch Event: Racial Justice Conversations

2.   Church Event: Weekly Meditation

3.   Social and Environmental Justice Committee News 

4.   Membership Committee News 

5.   Stewardship & Worship Committee News 

6.   Getting to Zero First Parish

Events, News & Announcements

$609.82 was collected during March’s Third Sunday Collection( 3/21) for Courageous Conversations.   Thank you for your generosity.  Your support helps further thier mission.

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

All are Welcome!

Next Session: Wednesday, April 14th, 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:

Meditation NEW TIME

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

Thursday evenings at NEW TIME 6:45 pm-7:15 pm 

Sunday mornings at 9:30am

Newcomers and friends welcome.

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


Social & Environmental Justice Committee 

Father Bills & Main Spring

Volunteers are needed on Wednesday, April 7th. Volunteers acquire food and pack 10 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 schedule Mainspring SignupGenius – please indicate number of lunches you will bring.

For their Zoom book club CCTRJ is reading “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontent” by Isabel Wilkerson.

CCTRJ Book Group

 Next one is April 1st:  Part 5: The Consequences of Caste

 Come join us every other Thursday at7PM

Dates:  April 1st, 15th, and 29th.

Link to join 


A Green Medley

Online Speaker Series for March:

Climate Change in the Blue Hills

The Blue Hills Climate Action Coalition invites the community to explore how climate change will alter the Blue Hills and surrounding communities.  Experts from organizations in and around the park will reveal how the warming climate will affect the watershed, woodlands, birds, food production and other flora and fauna of the Blue Hills area.  To sign up for the Zoom link, visit

The series’ aim is to raise public awareness about the local impacts of climate change and

showcase the groups in the Blue Hills area working to address them.  Each lecture will take place at 6:30 pm on the dates listed below. The issues and organizations featured in the series are:

Thursday, April 1

Managing Climate Impacts on Diverse Plant Collections

Mary May Binney Wakefield Arboretum

The Mary May Binney Wakefield Arboretum is a 25 acre property that lies within the much larger Blue Hills and Neponset River ecosystem.  The arboretum’s plant collection includes a very broad range of both native and non native species. This allows a unique opportunity to study the impacts of a changing climate on a variety of species. Arboretum Director Debbie Merriam will highlight some of the observations of the cascading impacts of a changing climate on plant species and its management strategy to adapt to these changes.



How to cut your heating bill, electric bill and carbon footprint to zero,by someone who has done it

TODAY, March 25, 7:00-8:30 p.m

Attendance is free but pre-registration is required through EventBright

David Green, presenterAll attendees will receive a free electronic version (for iPad or Kindle)of David Green’s practical guidebook,

*Zero Carbon Home  *Co-sponsored by First Parish Milton UU & Sustainable MiltonSpread the word………….. it’s a useful, digestible primer for homeowners.

The 25th Mother’s Day Walk For Peace will be taking place over a twenty fiveday period beginning in April and finishing with a virtual celebration onMother’s Day, May 9th at 9:00 AM. First Parish Milton has participated in this Louis D. Brown fundraisingevent for many years and we will have a team again this year. With a newname, “Getting to Peace, First Parish UU Milton” we will be beginning ourrecruitment of team members over the next few weeks. Louis D. Brown founder,Tina Cherry, will be speaking at a FP Sunday Zoom service in April. Moreinfo to follow soon.


ANNUAL TREE GIVEAWAY First Parish is joining the Blue Hills Climate Action Coalition to offer trees and shrubs to be planted within our community. Planting a tree is one of the simplest and most effective ways to help clean the air we breathe. This year, a variety of trees such as red oak, red maple, river birch, crab apple, and Colorado spruce will be provided. In addition, three shrubs will be offered for those who are short in space. These are grey dogwood, red twig, and common nine bark.They will arrive in the first week of April when they will be potted, then distributed in our church parking lot. Dates are to be determined. We were told that we will get a variety of the above and can’t chose specific trees.In our parking lot, you will be able to chose from the ones we have. If you would like to participate, please contact Cynthia Guise at  by April 2. We may need additional volunteers, so please let us know if you are available. Happy Planting!

 Crew at Fair Food Warehouse   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. Next session is This Saturday, April 10th If you want to volunteer please signup on Signup Genius by Thursday evening before the event. Start time and locations vary depending on Fair Foods’ needs, but typically start between 8:00 and 10 a.m. at Fair Foods’ warehouse in South Boston. Please wear a mask and bring gloves if you have them.    signup on Signup Genius  Any questions or for more information contact Tony Dutzik at


Membership Committee

 Our next Poetry Salon will be on TONIGHTMarch25th at 7:00 pm. Come with beloved poems – either yours or another’s. Bringyour favorite beverage and let’s share the love of language together. Zoom link  ~~~~~~~~~~ 

COOKING WITH DEB AND STEVE The next Friday Fun Cooking night will be onMarch 26, from 7:00pm-8:30pm. Lasagna and pasta will be on the menu. Email Debbie ahead of time for recipes and ingredients list: debalsebai@gmail.comZoom link coming Questions about any of these? Email Leslie:


Stewardship and Worship Committee

A Chance to Participate!  You may have noticed the testimonies of appreciation from fellow FirstParishoners on the Blue Screen during the Offertory portion of the WorshipService each Sunday. This was initiated by the Stewardship Team, and theWorship and Stewardship committees collectively have decided to continuethis aspect of the service, if there is interest. If you would like to “publish” your appreciation of anything that ishappening at First Parish or of something at First Parish that has impactedyou or surprised you in a positive way, please send your 2-3 sentence“appreciation” to Dottie Pitt at: As “appreciations” come in, we will make every effort to include one ineach service.  We will identify you by first name and last initial only inorder to protect your privacy.

Getting to


 “Getting to Zero” declares our intention. First Parish Milton’s Social and Environmental Justice Committee plans to propose this intention — to become Net Zero by 2035 — for a vote at the church’s Annual Meeting in May 16.  In advance of the annual meeting, we will learn together through a 3-part virtual discussion series:   what it means to become “net zero” and how to live more sustainably.  This is a critical issue, not only for our church but for our community, climate, and planet.  Each session stands on its own, so we invite you to zoom in to as many sessins as you can.  Join us on this educational journey so that you will be prepared to vote on May 16.  Save the dates: Wednesday, March 17thGetting to Zero 101: The Big PictureRecorded session available if you missed this oneContact  Tracey Robinson at for more info  Wednesday April 21st 6:30pm-7:30pmGetting to Zero 102:  What’s involved & learning from other congregations. Wednesday May 5th 6:30pm-7:30pmGetting to Zero 103:  Process and next steps

From your Social & Environmental Justice Committee