Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 6/11/2020

Weekly Link 6-11-2020

This Week in Virtual Worship

Sunday, June 14, 2020

Connections Through Time and Space”


Please see the zoom link below. Please log in at 10:20, to give some lead time for the service at 10:30. A zoom greeter will admit you into the zoom room. 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.

Our YouTube account is First Parish in Milton UU.

Please subscribe by hitting the subscribe button on our Youtube channel and you’ll get notifications of when new videos are posted.

Please be on the lookout for an Order of Worship which will be emailed to you on Friday, 6/12. 

We’ve added the offering to the service with a new way to give- text to giving! 

Sunday’s offering will go to ​​Fair Foods.

You can donate anytime between June 11th and June 14th. See below for  text donation instructions.  It will be good to worship together. Do join us on Sunday if you can.

Below in the Link:

1. Minister’s Message

2. RE Message

3. Summer Worship

4.  Sunday Donation Info

5. Yoga

6. Green Gleanings

7. Social Justice: World Refugee Day – Listen to Diverse Voices

8.  Meditation Info


Rev. Lisa Ward

A week ago today, 3000 people gathered along Blue Hills Parkway – spanning from Milton to Mattapan – for a peaceful, powerful stand out against racism.  It was organized by Courageous Conversations toward Racial Justice.  Right before I got into my car to help lead the event, I received a call that my younger brother fell down stairs and that his status was “critical”.  Eight hours later, I was in Delaware assenting to end of life procedures.

This is a tough, sorrowful time for me, but I am nowhere near alone in these soul challenging times.  Seventeen days ago, George Floyd was brutally murdered by a police officer, with the video of the killing broadcasted far and wide.  Spontaneous demonstrations, responded to peacefully and violently by law enforcement, erupted all over the nation in the midst of fears of the spread of COVID 19.  Just shy of two months ago, beloved First Parish member Ann Hallett died of Covid-19, as the congregation experienced limited possibilities for memorial gatherings due to quarantine measures.

The interweaving of personal and political, covid care and community longing, fear and love. is heightened during these times for everyone.  With our extended national upheaval, we are soul challenged by the pandemic, a deep recession, police brutality and increased awareness of systemic racism.  All the while, many of us are experiencing personal, heart-breaking losses.

One grounding suggestion is to show up for yourself and others as best as you can, with compassion as your guide. Pay attention to the growing effort to reimagine the world with the lessons of these times and take care of yourself enough to stay in the flow and footing of possibility.  Pay attention to both your health and your news sources.  Nourish your body and soul as you welcome new stories.  Honor the pace of transformation, which is a steady marathon, not a sprint.

None of us knows what this new world will look like, but all of us knows we need each other to get there.  Be covid careful.  Be well.  Believe in your courage to change and your strength to love.

In faith and love, Rev. Lisa

Religious Exploration

The Passages Program will meet online on June 14 at 9:45 am. The final celebration for the children in this much-loved program will be held during the worship service on June 28.

Children and Middle Schoolers: Virtual RE programming ends on June 14. (For the past three months we offered multiple short virtual programs throughout the week to help families feel connected to each other and to the heartbeat of First Parish Milton.) Programming will resume next fall on Ingathering Sunday, September 14.

Wishing all families a summer full of moments of connection, spiritual renewal, and beauty!

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

The Coming of Age worship service will be held online on June 21 starting at 9:30 am. 

Virtual Youth Chat: All youth should have received Zoom links to join Youth Chat online each week. Each session will give youth an opportunity to connect and share what is on their hearts and we will play fun group online games. Please let Laurel know if you need the link info. Our final session before summer break will be on Thursday, June 18, at 7:30 pm.

Events, News & Announcements

Summer Worship

Summer Worship starts Sunday, 6/21. Summer services will be held by zoom starting at 9:30am. We will continue having a social hour after services. The full schedule of diverse and thought provoking topics will be available next week.

Last Sunday’s Donations

Last Sunday, we collected $666.40 in donations for  Campaign Zero.

From today 6/11 through 6/14, we are accepting donations for Fair Foods.  Fair Foods is a non-profit program that rescues nutritious produce and other food items that would otherwise go to waste and distributes them to organizations and individuals in the Boston area. Fair Foods depends on the energy of its volunteers – including many of us from First Parish – and on financial contributions to operate the trucks and other infrastructure to bring food to the people.​

HOW TO GIVE: Simply text (617) 539-7576 with the amount that you’d like to give. Do not add words, simply put the amount. You’ll get an automatic text message back, asking you to do a 1-time set up to create an account with your credit card/debit number. After the one time set-up, you can simply text the number with an amount to give, and it’ll be automatically debited from the account of your choosing. This is contained and safe — it goes directly to a designated First Parish account. We will write one check of the compiled donations to the organization.

Yoga Classes – Restarting Monday

First Parish is restarting our Monday night yoga classes- virtually via Zoom! Elyse, our yoga instructor for many years, will be teaching Mondays from 6:30-7:30pm, starting THIS MONDAY, 6/15. Elyse describes her yoga classes as slow flow Vinyasa with modifications offered to allow for all levels. Use your breath, poses and meditation to regulate your nervous system and allow yourself to come up for some air. This class is open to all- even  if you never attended the in-person yoga classes before!

Cost for the yoga classes: $15 for one class, or 8 for $80. If you previously paid for yoga classes that were cancelled due to the pandemic, we are honoring those payments. If you are new and need to pay for classes, you can do so with ease from your cell phone. Text (617) 539-7576 and the amount you are paying with the word “yoga”- so a text message would say “$15 yoga”. For those of you that have already set up text giving with us, it is the same phone number and system, so you will not have to set up another account. If you haven’t set up text for giving, when you text the number, it’ll prompt you to create an account. Once you create the account, giving really is as simple as a text message.

Green Gleanings

Social & Environmental Action Committee [S+EJ]

There are several easy, specific things you can do between now and Election Day on Tuesday, November 3 to make a potential difference in its outcome.  “Polls also show that tens of millions of Americans strongly prioritize progressive environmental policies – the real problem is that these people do not vote. Indeed, even in recent nation-wide elections, over 15 million individually identifiable environmentalists have stayed at home on Election Day,” 

Take the Environmental Voter Pledge, “I pledge to be a consistent voter, and I will always prioritize environmental issues.”  Register to vote; your family members and friends/neighbors, too.  VOTE! Volunteer with Sierra Club’s Battleground Campaign (AZ, FL, MI, PA) or the Environmental Voter Project.  An earnest personalized letter, phonecall, or text message can influence a person to vote.  All of these organizations provide advance training and specific scripts or content.  Please consider devoting time (it feels good!) is something we might consider as a parish.  Who’s in? 

These actions do not endorse candidates or tell people how to vote. This is not engaging in partisan politics such that our status as a church non-profit is threatened.  The much bigger goal is to fundamentally change the electorate so that policy makers respond to issues: climate change treaties; carbon polluter fees; Green New Deal; renewable energy investment; clean public transit; post-Covid just transition; etc. 

“Voting is an act of faith. It is profound. In a democracy, it is the ultimate power… Vote because we deserve leaders who see us, who hear us and who are willing to act on our demands,”  Stacey Abrams (NYT op-ed 6/4/20).  Climate justice is racial justice, too. 


Second Chance Native Tree Seedling GiveawayWeekdays only Mon Jun 8 – Fri. Jun 19, 9 a.m. – NoonMary May Binney Wakefield Arboretum, 1465 Brush Hill Rd., Milton  

While supplies last, choose from four native species of deciduous plants (Northern Red Oak-tall at maturity, Red Maple-tall, River Birch-med., and Serviceberry-low) and a naturalized conifer, Norway Spruce-tall. Native trees have co-evolved over time with native wildlife species and provide the best food and shelter.  Sponsored by Blue Hills Climate Action Coalition  in honor of Earth Day 2020.  Special thanks to REI Co-op for funding this project. 
Social distancing protocols will be followed; please wear a mask.  People will stay in their cars and simply drive though. Volunteers will load potted trees into your trunk. There is a limit to two trees per family.  Please plant trees promptly, instructions provided! 

 For more info,  call 617-967-4578

 Keep the Faith 

Another parish member reports that her tupelo just put forth a “teeny nubbin” of green at its base, and another dug hers up to assess if there was evidence of root growth (yes). So. 7 !/2 weeks after our distribution, there might still be hope.  No guarantees.

Offered by First Parish The Social and Environmental Justice Committee

World Refugee Day – Listen to Diverse Voices

From the International Institute of New England

Several weeks ago, First Parish collected a Sunday offering to send to the International Institute of New England to support their special COVID relief work for the immigrant community.  Several people asked about this organization that provides services and education for the immigrant community in Boston.  On June 20, IINE is hosting a storytelling event which would be a wonderful way too spend your Saturday evening.  Here is the promo for the event and a link to their website where you can get tickets.

Never before has it been more important to LISTEN. That’s part of the reason IINE supports storytelling. 

Now, more than ever, our communities need stories like those from healthcare workers responding to COVID-19, and especially to hear from people directly impacted by racism.  

Storytelling helps us form new opinions and take in new information, and can lead us to a different perspective, while creating empathy and building community.

Meditation continues ….

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

Thursday evenings at 6pm 

Sunday mornings at 9 am

Newcomers and friends welcome.

Here are the links — these should remain consistent every week 

but note that the link for Thursday is different from Sunday!

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