Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 6/22/2018

Weekly Link 6-22-18


This Week in Worship

Sunday, June 24, 2018
Theme: Identity
Worship at 9:30 am in the Children’s Church

Rev. LisaMinister

Rev. Lisa Ward

It just so happens, on my trip to Washington DC to visit my son next week, I’ll be in town for the “Families Belong Together” rally on June 30th. There will be a gathering in Boston at City Hall that day and in many cities around the nation. It is important that we keep vigilant, even if an executive order signed by the President on Wednesday is curbing the separation of families.

What we have been witnessing, bit by bit, is the creeping menace of dehumanization. “Dehumanization,” writes Michael Gerson of the Washington Post, “has a natural progression. It starts by defining a whole race or ethnicity by its worst members — say, rapists and other criminals. It moves on to enforce generally applicable laws and rules that especially hurt a target group. Then, as the public becomes desensitized, the group can be singled out for hatred and harm. It is the descent, step by step, into a moral abyss.”

When Attorney General Jeff Sessions justified the separation of families and traumatization therein by quoting the Bible, it was clear that we are dangerously near moral disintegration. When we proclaim God’s approval for cruelty — and we have throughout history — to justify oppression or injustice, we have lost our way. We become dangerous to life itself in its many forms.

This is not to be shrugged off, nor compartmentalized in the behavior of one individual. Our culture is giving permission for this attitude of power over, of using others as political pawns, of feeding the addiction of “us” and “them”.

This is why we need each other, to intentionally and mindfully come together and teach each other beloved community. We need one another to train towards the wisdom of healthy interdependence and peace.

It is good to endeavor this way together in faith.

Blessings Be, Rev. Lisa

Rev. Lisa’s s vacation schedule:

Out of the Office:

  • July 30th -August 20th
  • Pastoral coverage is available. Contact Amanda Tobey, Caring Committee chair, for assistance.


MANY THANKS to all who participated in the discussion about whether the cross in the meetinghouse should be the central focal point of our worship space. Over these past few months we’ve had several small groups, several individual comments sent to the worship committee and a survey offered to members who did not attend the small group discussions. The worship committee will send a recommendation to the Parish Committee for their meeting on July 9th. A decision and description of next steps will be sent via email to the membership shortly thereafter. Many thanks, as well, to the worship committee, who have devoted many hours and much thought to bringing this important discussion and process to our faith community.

Religious ExplorationReligious Exploration

Laurel Whitehouse, Director of Religious Exploration

Religious exploration programming for children will resume in September. Enjoy your summer, and remember to take time to enjoy the boundless beauty of nature!

Youth programming will resume in September. Youth room painting will be continuing on August 18 and 19 – helpers needed! Please email us if you’d like to volunteer on this much-needed project.

Events, News and Announcements


This upcoming Sunday:

June 24 – Deb Alsebai and Paul Casaz – “Childhood in White – What wasn’t said”

The Courageous Conversations group of Milton will explore some of the themes of Waking Up White, by Debbie Irving.

Our full summer services schedule is available on our website.

Click to view:



  • Thursday, June 21, 3pm-7:30pm
  • Friday, June 22, 10am-noon

Activities room (basement level) near the carriage house parking lot

BRING US your gently used furniture, sporting equipment, toys, clothes, books, lawn and garden items, “boutique” clothes, household goods, bicycles, and more…

Please note: we cannot accept donations of mattresses, TVs, broken items, cribs, car seats, underwear, bathing suits, electronics (unless new), stuffed animals, and moldy books.

If these times don’t work for you, please Contact Jen Pinkus to arrange an alternate drop-off time. We can also arrange to pick up your items!

Can you help? We need volunteers to: help with set-up, staffing tables, and clean up on June 23. Contact Jen Pinkus

First Parish Yard Sale

Saturday, June 23, 9 am – 1pm

The event is open to public – rain or shine – spread the word!


Parenting As A Spiritual Practice: Parenting Ages 5 and Younger

Facilitator: Rev. Lisa Ward

Due to a limited response, we are postponing “Parenting As A Spiritual Practice: Parenting Ages 5 and Younger” till the Fall. Please contact the office:, if you would like to attend beginning in the Fall. We need at least 6 people for the program to be scheduled. Child care will be available upon request.

Here is the description: One resident theologian and parent of young children longed out loud for clarity around finding spirituality in the chaos of parenting. This is both possible and accessible in your everyday lives. At this gathering we will determine together what issues we can explore with one another. If there is enough interest, we will schedule monthly gatherings to set aside time to help each other find our way.

Join our summer book discussion: WAKING UP WHITE by Debby Irving

An initiative of the First Parish Social Action Committee

in collaboration with Courageous Conversations Toward Racial Justice

Debby Irving grew up in Winchester, Massachusetts, a predominantly white, upper middle class community. In this book, she shares her journey toward recognition of white privilege. This is an accessible book that invites deeper knowledge of our culture and our way through toward clarity, which is a necessary step toward transformation of our society at large.

We will meet every other Tuesday from 7- 8 pm in the library. Our next meeting is June 26th. The reading assignments will offer an easy pace through the summer. We will create opportunities for zoom conferencing for an option to call in for the discussion.

Please contact the office if you are interested, or speak with Debbie Alsebai. Debbie has copies of the book that you can purchase.

Mattapan Milton Neponset Community Celebration

June 28th – (7:00 – 9:00pm): Two Communities and a River: The Story of the Neponset Greenway Extension. An interactive community storytelling event with True Story Theater. All are welcome. Foley Senior Residences, 249 River Street, Mattapan.

The MMNC gathers as neighbors along the Neponset River to explore how to make the Greenway Trail Extension an opportunity to forge stronger relationships among residents of Mattapan and Milton based on mutual respect, understanding, and a common love of the beautiful river and greenway we share. The long-term goal is to understand, confront and eliminate structural racism and other forces that divide and disempower our Neponset Valley Communities.

Courageous Conversations Upcoming Date

Thursday, July 26th, 6-8:30pm, Milton Public Library, 476 Canton Ave., Milton. Join us for a screening and discussion of the award-winning documentary I am Not Your Negro. Directed by Raoul Peck and narrated by Samuel L. Jackson, the award-winning documentary is based on an unfinished manuscript by James Baldwin and recounts the lives of Martin Luther King Jr., Malcom X, and Medgar Evers.


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


Monday – Thursday 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Other times by appointment


Tuesday – Thursday 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Other times by appointment

The Church office is closed on Fridays

Sundays through mid June

  • Worship, 10:30 am in the Meetinghouse
  • Choir Rehearsal (most Sundays) at 8:45 am
  • Silent Prayer & Meditation, 9:00am in the Children’s Church


Silent Prayer & Meditation, 7:00 pm in the Children’s Church (Note new time)

SIGN UP GENIUS (formerly known as the Planner)

The link to SignUp Genius is:

You can sign up for one our our Sunday volunteer positions.