Current News

Escalating Inequality Conference

UUs for a Just Economic Community:
Escalating Inequality or Oppurtunity for All?
Saturday, May 9, 9:30am at UUA Headquarters

DistributionOfWealth
This one-day conference is intended to help congregations address the UUA’s newest Congregational Study and Action Issue — the fact and consequences of, and possible solutions to, escalating economic inequality in America and elsewhere. The day will include TED-style talks on wage issues, money in politics, and racial justice.  State Action Network leaders will discuss how to make justice happen.  Keynote speakers include:

  • Chuck Collins of the Institute for Policy Studies
  • Bertha Lewis, founder and president of The Black Institue and former CEO of ACORN
  • Dr. Charles Derber, Professor of Sociology at Boston College
  • Rev. Kelly Weisman Asprooth-Jackson, Minister of First Parish UU in Beverly, MA

The conference fee is $20 and includes materials and a light lunch. There is an optional dinner at a nearby restaurant with separate checks.  Register at UUJEC.com/conferenceinformation. Contact Clark Taylor or Scott Muldoon for information about carpooling.

 

Cheese is the Taste of April

Saturday, April 18, 7-8:30pm

Join your fellow First Parish foodies for the April Tasting of the Month — an evening of sampling delicious cheeses and camaraderie. The Fun and Frolic Committee will provide the cheese and crackers — and babysitting! — and you are encouraged to bring a bottle of white wine or other suitable beverage. Please sign up for this event by contacting Anna Berkenblitt. Cost is $10 per person.

April Positively Aging

Tuesday, April 14, at 4 pm in the Parlor

Our long-postponed program on Preventing Falls and Achieving Better Balance is now scheduled for April 14. Lynn Clancy, a Needham physical therapist, will lead us in gentle exercises designed to give us confidence in our abilities and motivate us to continue healthy practices at home.  We will also discuss ways to make our homes safer so that we can prevent falls.
The statistics about older adults and FALLS are staggering.  Often a major fall at home, outdoors, or at another place can be the beginning of the downward slide toward the end of life.  After a major fall, few adults recover the abilities they had before.  The period of convalescence after a fall leads to loss of muscle tone, isolation, and an inability to do the things that make life meaningful.
Keeping ourselves healthy is a major goal of Positively Aging.  “Use it or lose it” is the motto we’ve all heard.  It applies to all of us.

Bring your exercise mat or a heavy towel.  If you are using exercise equipment at home, bring it with you. (Don’t bring your treadmill!)  Come at 4:00 and plan to stay for supper after.  Most of all—COME!  We miss you when you’re not there.

The Positively Aging Planning Team:  Fred Kresse,
Helen Lane, Phyllis Beck and Kay Taylor

Roll and Stroll, Sunday, May 17

Roll and Stroll is a church wide, multigenerational event in which participants walk, bike, scooter, or car pool to church, as a way to demonstrate and live our commitment to taking care of the earth.  This year, neighborhood groups are organizing within their groups to gather, and Roll and Stroll together.  Feel free to contact your neighborhood group if you have not heard from them.  On May 17, there will be no children’s choir, adult choir or lyceum, so all of the church staff and congregation are free to participate.  We will meet on the church lawn at 10:15 for lemonade and a group Roll and Stroll photo.  This is a rain or shine, hopefully shine, event.  The more the merrier, and the less the carbon footprint!  

Installation of Rev. Catie Scudera

By , March 30, 2015
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Saturday, May 2, 4:30pm in the Meetinghouse

On Saturday, May 2, 2015, First Parish in Needham will host an installation ceremony to formally welcome the Reverend Catie Scudera as the 32nd called minister of First Parish in Needham, Unitarian Universalist, The ceremony will begin at 4:30pm in the First Parish sanctuary, and is open to the public.

The traditional installation service celebrates the relationship between the minister and the congregation during a new minister’s first year of service. Rev. Scudera was called to First Parish in May 2014 by a unanimous vote of the congregation after an intensive year-long search. She assumed her duties at First Parish on August 15, 2014. According to Wendy Blom, President of First Parish, “Rev. Scudera has brought wonderful excitement and energy to the Church in her first year. The congregation is looking forward to the Installation ceremony to celebrate her achievements and bright future in Needham with the wider UU community.

Rev. Kim Crawford Harvie, Senior Minister of Boston’s Arlington Street Church where Scudera served as an Intern Minister, will deliver the sermon. Rev. John Buehrens, who served as the Minister of First Parish from 2002-2012, will deliver the prayer of installation. Former interim minister Rev. Katie Lee Crane and former intern ministers Rev. Sarah Gibb Millspaugh and Rev. Christian Schmidt are also participating. Many other local Unitarian-Universalist ministers will also attend to give their support to the new ministry.

Childcare will be available for nursery and preschool-age children. Older children will receive an activity booklet to help them follow along with the ceremony.

There will be a reception following the ceremony. 

Green Electricity Initiative

Earth Month at First Parish  (March 22 to April 19) will be a special  time, with opportunities for reflection and action to address climate change. The Green Congregation Committee will launch a “Green Electricity Initiative,” encouraging households to make a specific commitment to choosing “green electricity.” There are a number of options in addition to getting solar panels — any electric customer can choose a way to help bring more renewable energy into the grid. Information about these options will be provided. First Parish members who already have solar panels and other forms of green electricity will be recognized, and the Green Congregation Committee has a goal of getting at least 30 new households to opt for green energy. Watch for more information at the March 22 service

First Parish Potluck Seder

SederplateFriday, April 10 at 6 pm in the Parlor
We are restarting the tradition of a First Parish Seder. Come learn and experience the tradition with your fellow “Jew-nitarians” in this communal, family-friendly event. No previous knowledge needed. Each family will be asked to bring a item to contribute to the dinner and Seder plate.  Because we are in a very small space, seating is limited to about 40 people. If you wish to attend, please email Darren Zinner at darrenzinner@gmail.com.

Roll and Stroll May 17 – Mark your calendars!

Roll and Stroll is a church wide, multigenerational event in which participants walk, bike, scooter, or car pool to church, as a way to demonstrate and live our commitment to taking care of the earth. This year, neighborhood groups are organizing within their groups to gather, and Roll and Stroll together. Feel free to contact your neighborhood group if you have not heard from them. On May 17, there will be no children’s choir, adult choir or forum, so all of the church staff and congregation are free to participate. We will meet on the church lawn at 10:15 for lemonade and a group Roll and Stroll photo. This is a rain or shine, hopefully shine, event. The more the merrier, and the less the carbon footprint!

A Night of Poetry with Jane Hart

By , March 5, 2015
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Sunday, April 19, 7:30—9:30pm in the Parlor

“It is difficult to get the news from poems, yet men die miserably every day for lack of what is found there.”

~ William Carlos Williams

 April is National Poetry Month, and First Parish will host once again a night of poetry. Poet Jane Hart will be reading from her recent work, and you’ll have the chance to share some of your favorites poems.

 A lifelong Massachusetts resident, Jane has made her home primarily in the southeast, where she is inspired by the nature outside her windows, as well as human nature, and—when she can get it—travel. Her poetry is inflected with music—she has a degree in Music Composition from Berklee College of Music—and syntax borrowed from studying American Sign Language. Jane was a 2006 and a 2007 winner of the Worcester County Poetry Association contest, a 2010 resident at the Frost Place, a 2012 nominee for Best New Poets, and a 2014 Poetry Fellow at the Writers’ Room of Boston, where she composed new work and contributed to a blog about writing. Her poems have appeared in journals such as Ocean State Review, Southern Poetry Review, and The Worcester Review. Jane holds an MFA in Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts (2013), and is currently working on a full-length collection of poems tentatively titled, Heard, Half-Heard.

After brief refreshments, we will have an open mike, at which point all of you will be invited to share a couple of your favorite poems – either from your own work or that of another.

 

 

 

 

 

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