Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 9/28/2023

Your Weekly Link – News and Updates 9/28/2023

Table of Contents

  • This Week in Worship
  • Message from Rev. Lisa
  • This Week in Religious Exploration
  • Events and Meetings
  • News and Announcements
  • Volunteer Opportunities
  • Beyond First Parish

This Week in Worship

“When the Way is Long”

Guest Minister: Rev. Mary-Margaret Earl 

Worship Assistant: Elise Henricks

Greeter: Steve Yakutis

Audio: Nicholas Miller

Social Hour: Guy Pugh & Cynthia Guise

Sunday’s offering will be given to the  UU Urban Ministry. Their mission: To work across race and place to dismantle racism and white supremacy culture and to advance racial, social, and economic justice.

Please join us for service at 10:30am.

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.

The Rev. Mary Margaret Earl has served as Executive Director and Senior Minister of the Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry for 9 years. In this ministry, she has worked to strengthen bonds between UUs and the Roxbury neighborhood where the UUUM operates. Prior to her arrival at the UU Urban Ministry, she spent 10 years at a faith-based nonprofit in RI serving the homeless community, She is past president of the Board of the Rhode Island Coalition for the Homeless, recipient of the Heroes of Faith Award from the Rhode Island State Council of Churches for her interfaith work, and received a Courage of Conscience award from the Peace Abbey in Sherborn, Ma. She is a longtime vegan committed to standing up for nonhuman animals.

We are having a perplexing and, sometimes soul sinking relationship with truth these days. On the one hand, justice and equity initiatives are bringing to light the fact of multiple truths ever present in a community. One way of seeing may be very different than another. Inclusivity is a challenge, a way of practicing not knowing, a way of listening, of trying, of learning, of sharing. This kind of engagement with truth encourages an ever expansive inclusivity, though it can be quite challenging, quite humbling, and, even, unnerving. The trust in abundant life beyond any one way of knowing helps in the journey. Being willing to hear, respond, acknowledge, witness, make mistakes, forgive, try again….these all enrich our experience of dwelling with and for one another.

On the other hand, when “alternative facts” became an acceptable political phrase several years ago, the play with truth in our civic and political world has engendered a dangerous polarizing dynamic in society. It is affecting our ways of relating to one another, as we foster divisions of “us” and “them” through truths manufactured to manipulate outcomes, instill fear and “other” beings. This is creating a cynicism toward the possibility of “truth”, a distain of the reliance on a larger sense of shared being.

That is why our gathering in efforts of beloved community is so important. As we each grow in wisdom and care of the challenges and joys of diverse being and relating, we can have trust in the truth of shared dignity and worth. This helps us in our life choices and in our recognition of the dynamics that do not serve a just and healthy world.

This I pray, Rev. Lisa

Religious Exploration

Religious Exploration

Dear FPM families and friends,

We’ve got some wonderful things happening this month and we want *you* to be part of it! A couple of reminders for the next few weeks…..

  • October 1 – Elementary school children will be meeting in the Children’s Chapel. We’re trying this out as a more permanent meeting spot. Feedback always welcome. Our preK-2nd graders will be doing Spirit Play in the basement, as usual. Our youth group will be meeting at 1 for pizza and games in the youth room (more details coming specifically to families on our youth group list; reach out if you think you should be on this list but aren’t). We’ll be introducing Wiggle Pews- look for an special email Friday!
  • October 8 – We’ll have Multigenerational worship! Come worship as a whole community!
  • October 15 – We’ll have our first workshop of the year! Join us for our Harvest Communion.

As always please reach out to Louise with questions, concerns, and enthusiasm ( We will see you soon!

Music This Week

This Sunday we welcome a new guest pianist, whom you will be hearing periodically throughout the church year. Arman Mohammed is currently studying at the Berklee School of Music. He grew up in South Portland, ME, and his family is from Pakistan. 

Events and Meetings

Milton Welcoming Haitian Newcomers Meeting

TODAY Sept. 28th at 7:00 pm on ZOOM

Please join our group to discuss how we can help recently -arrived Haitian families or individuals to get settled and acclimated. We hope that you will be able to attend this meeting. Please feel free to share the link with anyone else who may be interested in supporting this effort. Thank you.

Cynthia Guise and Pat Gallivan

Youth Group will meet this Sunday, October 1st at 1:00 pm in the youth room.


Open to ALL!

Please join the Committee Chairs as we plan the church year ahead and our discernment process of Article II.

Friday, October 13th

6:00pm – 8:00pm

Trunk or Treat at First Parish!

Sunday, October 22 at 12:00 p.m.

Halloween is just around the corner!

On Sunday, October 22, bring your decorated car to First Parish, and give out candy to trick-or-treaters!

Ways you can participate:

  • Decorate the trunk of your car
  • Donate candy
  • Help out at the event (set up, direct cars to spots, clean up, etc.)
  • Bring your kids and their friends in their Halloween costumes to trick-or-treat from car to car

If you’re interested in helping, please let Lisa White know:

News and Announcements

SAVE THE DATE: Next Sunday, October 8th will be our Annual Blessing of the Animals

All pets- leased, caged or otherwise safely restrained- are welcome! 

Stuffed animals are welcome! 

Photos of beloved deceased pets or those beloved but whom you’d think are better left at home are welcome! 

This multi generational service will focus on what our animal friends can teach us, and will conclude with a blessing of each animal. For those worshiping from home, you will be invited to include your pet or a photo of your pet during the blessing.

Join us next Sunday as we listen for what animals have to teach us.

Climate Action @ HOME

We are a faith community concerned about the health of our planet and we are committed to reaching a zero-carbon output goal by 2035. Although our goal is focused on the church campus, many members of the church have asked for ways to grow their knowledge of “climate actions” they might try “at home”. Several years ago, Eric Miller offered a session on Electric Vehicles that inspired the idea for doing more, similar events.  Questions like:  How do I calculate my carbon footprint?  How do I start investigating solar panels?  What is a “heat pump”?

The Climate Action Team is interested in taking advantage of the knowledge and experience within our congregation by offering a series of Q&A discussions throughout the coming year on topics of interest.  We hope to hold sessions on Sundays after worship from 12-1pm.

 If you have ideas for a Q&A session or questions please contact Tracey Robinson at  AND stay tuned for announcements of upcoming Q&A sessions.

Breeze Tutorial

Did you know that First Parish has an online directory called Breeze? It’s a convenient way to find phone numbers, email addresses, and street addresses. If you haven’t already activated your account, see the email you should have received on September 14th with the link to do that. You can watch this video [see below] for some tips on setting up your account. If you’ve already activated your account and just need the link, click here. If prompted, the church name is “Firstparishmiltonuu”

We are looking for Social Hour Hosts

We look forward to seeing you at our Social Hours after church on Sunday. We are looking for hosts, and you can sign up at Signup Genius. New to hosting or need a refresher?  A member of the Hospitality Committee will contact those who sign up to offer guidance and answer questions. Thank you!

Sunday Service

First Parish is in need of volunteers for worship assistants, greeters, and social hour hosts (see above).

If interested in signing up please use Signup Genius link.

We have appreciated your help in the past and hope you can help again.

Thank you in advance.

Mainspring lunches are BACK!

On October 4, we will resume our Mainspring shelter lunch program! S&EJ (Social & Environmental Justice committee) is looking for volunteers the first and third Wednesday of each month to contribute lunches. We hope to deliver 70 lunches twice a month to support shelter guests.

 See updated instructions on the Mainspring SighUpGenius

Beyond First Parish

The First Parish Racial Justice Group is Building Bridges with the Church of the Holy Spirit in Mattapan.

Friday, September 29th 5:00 pm- 7:00 pm

Come meet some new friends and try the Caribbean Fusion Cuisine of Mello Vibez at 473 River Street right (across from the Mattapan T Stop).

Parking is right next door at the Public Parking Lot. 

Please let Debbie Alsebai at know if you would like to attend this great opportunity to support a woman run business just a few miles away from First Parish.

Harvest Party

Pilgrimage Retreat to Scotland July 2024


Former Sabbatical Minister Tricia Brennan (Fall 2022) is co-leading, with Rev. Jenny Rankin, two pilgrimage retreats to the island of Iona, Scotland, next July 3-10 and 12-19, 2024. Their vision is to offer people a chance to find their own story amidst the stories, beauty, and soulfulness of Iona. For further details, photos and testimonials, check out the website: You can also contact them at and revjenny@comcast.net