Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 5/7/2021

Weekly Link 5-7-2021

This Week in Virtual Worship

May 9, 20201

May Theme:  Emergence

Sermom:  “Emergence Moments”

Facilitated by:  Rev. Lisa Ward

Worship Associate:   Christopher Clifford

Faith Reflection:  Debbie Alsebai

Music:  Tim Steele

Audio Engineer:  Daniel Truog

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, 5/7

​   Today’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!

Last week, a member of the National Honor Society at Milton High School contacted me with a request to place their “Stop  Asian Hate” banner on our campus for a time.  This was a service project completed by ten National Honor Society students.   Upon the Parish Committee’s ok, we are awaiting the banner, which will arrive some time next week. 

We will be able to display this banner as part of Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, which is designated for May.  In 1990, George H.W. Bush signed a bill to extend Asian-American Heritage Week to a month.  In 1992, the month was officially named Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month.  The month of May was chosen, in part, to recognize that on May 7, 1843, the first Japanese immigrant arrived in the United States. It was also in May – May 10, 1869 – when the golden spike was driven into the First Transcontinental Railroad, which came to fruition, primarily, through Chinese labor. 

It is a good sign that we were thought of as partners in an advocacy such as this.  It touches on the on-going discussion of what it means to be a “church on the green”.  We have a wonderful, beautiful campus that also happens to be situated right next to Milton’s town hall and across the way from the Library.  Having been established in 1678, we also carry a historical relevance to the town.  As a church on the green, how do we want to comport ourselves?  What do we want to communicate to the town, to possible visitors, to our neighbors?  It is a lively and intriguing query to live into.

As we look to returning to campus some time in the near future, let us consider the life of our faith community, situated so prominently on the town green.  There is much we can do together.

Blessings Be, Rev. Lisa


Religious Exploration

Family Spirit Circle: Family Spirit Circle packets will be delivered this weekend on Ideas of God. Understanding concepts of God is part of Principle 4: Our individual search for what is true and right in life and part of 5 of the 6 UU Sources. It is important to understand the idea and the meaning of God even if you find that believing in God doesn’t feel right for you.

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

Middle and High School Youth: Calling all middle and high school youth to a Gathering on Sunday, May 16, from 3:30 to 5 pm to celebrate and lift up our graduating seniors, to create posters commemorating the one year anniversary (on May 25) of George Floyd’s death, and to rediscover community through playing some lighthearted yard games. The posters will be carried by marchers during the May 25 March for George and Justice parade being planned by the town of Milton and Courageous Conversations. 

Social justice/climate justice options for youth this May are: 

(1) The 25 Days of Walking campaign in support of the 25th Louis D. Brown Peace Institute’s Motherhood March for Peace is underway but it is not too late to join! Youth are encouraged to join the campaign for as many events as possible (the 25 days are from April 5 to May 7, with an online finale on May 9th at 9:00 am).

(2) March for George and Justice on May 25. Details coming soon. Youth are welcome to join the planning team for this event, let Rev. Lisa know if you’d be interested in helping out.

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

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


 In honor of Mother’s Day the music this coming Sunday will feature womencomposers in addition to music that honors mothers everywhere. The preludeand postlude will feature piano pieces by Fanny-Mendelssohn-Hensel and AmyBeach. Jennifer Sgroe will sing a touching song that reflects on theenormous debt of gratitude we owe to our mothers, “A Mother’s Eyes” byStephen Jones. Guest vocalist Keith Brinkley will also be offering an artsong by H.T. Burleigh called “Little Mother of Mine”. And at 3pm don’t forget to invite your mother and the rest of your family to join you in the Milton Community Concert benefit event for Rosie’s Place, “MUSIC SHE WROTE: SONGS BY AND ABOUT WOMEN” (see below for more info)  (

The Annual Meeting will take place on May 16 at 11:30am via Zoom.

The warrant is on the members section of the website. The full annual report will be available next week. Zoom info was emailed to members yesterday. We’ll send a reminder email again next week. For now- please reserve the time on your calendar for this important annual event.

Table of Contents

For Events, News and Announcements 

1.   Ramadan Food Drive

2.   Milton Community Concerts

3.   MICA COVID Commemoration

4.   March For George & Justice SAVE THE DATE5.   Church Event: Racial Justice Conversations

6.   Church Event: Weekly Meditation

7.   Job Posting

8.   PRO News: Reopening First Parish

9.   Membership Committe News-  Poetry Salon event

10. Worship Committe News: summer worship

11. Environmental Committe News

12. Social and Environmental Justice Committee News

Events, News & Announcements


Monday April 26th — Monday May 10th

Join your Muslim Neighbor! Ramadan is a very special time of year for Muslims to do good deeds. It is important to help and give to those struggling to put food on their tables.

Donate food, dry goods, and hygiene items. All items must have ingredient labels with current expiration dates.

Most-needed Items:

Healthy snacks for kids
Juice boxes

Peanut butter & jelly
Shelf-stable milk
Canned soup
Personal care items: toothbrushes, toothpaste, bar soap (unscented), shampoo, body wash

Mac & Cheese
Pasta & sauce
Canned fruit or vegetables
Dry or canned beans Condiments (incl. salt & pepper) Salad dressing
Cooking oil / Olive oil
Diapers (size 5 & 6), baby wipes

All donations can be dropped off between now and Monday, May 10th in the Carriage House.  There will be marked bins to store items.

A very big “THANK YOU” to all those who have dropped off items already !

Donations to be distributed by Interfaith Social Services in Quincy. This project is brought to you by Milton Muslim Neighbors (MMN), Milton Interfaith Clergy Association (MICA), and Milton Public Schools (MPS). For more info, please contact Tahra at


Now is the time to check out Milton Community Concerts livestream concert event, “Lifting Our Voices: Songs of Struggle and Hope by African AmericanComposers”, with guest speaker Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley.

If you weren’t able to attend the concert live, you still have the opportunity (until May 11th) to log in and view it You will be supporting the Neponset Neighbors Together Fund when you do.


On Mother’s Day, May 9th at 3pm Milton Community Concerts will present a live-stream benefit concert, “Music She Wrote: Songs By and About Women”. This one-hour program will feature a diverse and prestigious group of composers and performers in a multicultural program to benefit Rosie’s Place Women’s Shelter in Boston. This concert will also feature a talk by opera creator and Pulitzer Prize-winning librettist Cerise Jacobs. Tickets can be purchased on the Sparrow Live concert platform: ( for a $10 donation, and the concert will be streamed for a full month, until June 9th.

 Commemorating our Journey through Covid-19

A Community Gathering of Loss, Healing and Hope

Presented by Milton Interfaith Clergy Association

in partnership with

BID–Milton Hospital, Town of Milton Select Board, and Milton Access TV

3:00pm-4:00pm on Sunday, May 16th

Town Gazebo, 525 Canton Avenue

Unable to attend?  Join the livestream at or on Comcast 9 and RCN 3

Email us at if you would like to add a name to our

COVID Commemoration Art Project

In the event of inclement weather, the service will be remote-only

March For George & Justice

One Year Anniversary March and Rally    

Milton and Mattapan

Blue Hills Parkway and Blue Hills Ave.


Tuesday, May 25, 2021 route TBA

Join the sponsors and volunteers !


Racial Justice Focus Group

Conversations by Zoom with Rev. Lisa, Timothy Ellis and Debbie Alsebai meets on the 2nd & 4th Wednesdays monthlyAll are Welcome!

Next Session: Wednesday, May 12th, 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:


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

Thursday evenings at 6:45 pm-7:15 pm 

Sunday mornings at 9:00am-9:30am

Newcomers and friends welcome.

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

First Parish is still  searching for a part-time RE coordinator — please go to FP website more info. Spread the word!

Reopening First Parish

The Phased ReOpening task group is pleased to report that the Parish Committee has approved a proposal to begin the exciting work of planning for in-person events at First Parish in Milton!  This will require planning by various committees,  church staff, and YOU — so stay tuned to the weekly Link for more info on plans for a yearend picnic, summer worship, and more!   As we enter this transition period, we will ask people to: 

  • wear masks when in large, public gatherings – especially at indoor gatherings
  • sign-in when joining an in-person church event (to enable contact tracing)
  • continue for now to avoid “COVID risky” activities such as public singing, public food sharing, hugs/kisses

 AND PLEASE continue to take care of your own safety and the safety of others by observing safe distancing and get a COVID vaccine as soon as you are “willing and able”!We want everyone in our community to feel safe and welcome.  This will be a challenging and emotional transition.   If you have concerns, please feel free to reach out to Rev Lisa for a pastoral conversation.

Membership Committee News

Saturday May 8th from 7:00-8:00  *Come to the next First Parish Poetry Salon*   On Saturday evening, May 8th, we will gather together to share our love of the music of words. Come at 7 and bring a poem that you have written or found, and a portion of the evening will spotlight poetry that fits the theme of Nurturing (since the next day is Mothers Day) Mothers aren’t the only nurturers so it’s meant to be a starting point.   Bring your favorite beverage, get comfortable and let’s share. Hope you can make it. Reach out to Leslie, if you have questions;

Worship Committee News

LAY LEADERS FOR SUMMER SERVICES  The Worship Committee is still looking for three more people to lead summer services. (They are shorter and more informal than regular services!) Before you dismiss the idea, isn’t there something you’ve been wanting to share from your life experience or your current thinking?  Here is your chance to give it voice. Let Penny know, and she will give you your choice of the Sundays left. You will get a Worship Assistant, unless you want to ask a friend. You are likely to get Liz Alvarez playing the piano (unless you want to provide music some other way). And you will get huge appreciation from the Worship Committee. Thank you!



P.S. We think we’ll be livestreaming from the meeting house with people there responsibly distanced while others tune in from wherever they are.

From S&EJ Committee:  Environmental News

“Getting to Zero”

Getting to


“Getting to Zero” is a series of workshops at First Parish Milton created to help prepare the congregation for a vote at our annual meeting on May 16, 2021.  The congregation will vote on a proposal from the Social and Environmental Justice Committee which states our  commitment to reduce carbon emissions at First Parish Milton by the year 2035.  In our journey toward climate health we are continuously learning 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.