Current News

Annual Plant Sale at FP

By , April 10, 2014
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Save the Date!  On Sunday, April 27th the Green Congregation Committee will once again sponsor the annual Plant Sale at First Parish.  The Neighborhood Farm will offer healthy cool season vegetable plants for sale in time for spring plantings (lettuce, broccoli, leafy greens, herbs and lots more.)  They will also have sign ups to reserve warm season plants like tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant for pickup at the Needham Farmers’ Market, beginning on Memorial Day Weekend. Look for the sale on the Lincoln Street side of the church from 11- 1 PM.

Earth Month Work Day at the Needham Community Farm

By , March 27, 2014
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April 13, 2014

Do you like digging and shoveling?  Stop by the Green Congregation Committee/Needham Community Farm Table at Social Hour on March 30 and April 6 to sign up for our Earth Month work project working at the Needham Community Farm.  This was great fun last year!  Since Earth Day and Easter both fall on April 20, we are moving our service day to April 13.  After Social Hour, volunteers will be served a pizza lunch in Parish Hall and then head out to the Farm for up to 2 hours to weed and spread compost and wood chips. First Parish is sponsoring one of the beds this year to grow food for the Needham Food Pantry.  This past season the Farm donated about 1700 lbs of fresh vegetables (up from 500 lbs last year) to the Needham Food Pantry, which serves 200 families per month. The work will be appropriate for ages 6 and up. Hope to see you!   

Are Older People Invisible?

Positively Aging; Tuesday April 9; 4-6pm in the Parlor

Do younger people think of older people as one lump of grey hair, old clothes, tired expressions, and slow walking? Could you rob a bank or a Brinks truck in a busy location and slip away unnoticed? Have you allowed yourself to become outdated in your thinking while the world whirs by? As an older person, do you often find yourself standing on the sidelines, hesitant to express your opinion, wary of the tasks that are ahead? A recent Wall Street Journal article suggested that we have seldom presented ourselves as anything other than worn out, sick, needy, un-hip technophobes who would rather wallow in our own wrinkled lives than ‘get with the scene.’ It further suggests that we have tried to defer the ravages of aging by undergoing plastic surgery, hair transplants, and hair dye, causing us to be looked on as silly old fools. Therefore, you can’t blame the young for their ageist ideology. Perhaps we have done it to ourselves.

Does the paragraph above make you mad or puzzled? What are we doing to define ourselves in age-appropriate ways as we get older?

Please come to share your ideas and stay for supper. If you want to think of yourself as “positively aging,” we need you to be part of this group.

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

Introducing Spirit of the Earth Month 2014

This year, the Green Sanctuary and RE Committees are teaming up to create a very special program for children at First Parish that will run from April 13th through May 4th that we’re calling “Spirit of Earth Month.”  During these four weeks we will take some time out from our regular RE program to engage with the environment in both material and spiritual ways. Continue reading…

(Might Be) The Best Family Singalong and Potluck Ever!

By , March 20, 2014
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Sunday, April 13, 5:30 p.m. -7:00 p.m.
We have the musicians, you bring the food and your family, and we’ll see what happens.  Come join your songleaders Jim Sargent, Beth Sargent, Dave Blom, Kate Campe, Eliot Jekowsky and Chris Pahud for an evening of singing that you can do with your mouth full. This is an all ages event (and besides, kids sing silly songs better than adults). No particular level of singing skill required – honest. Being able to clap would be a plus. Bring animal puppets if you have them. Please bring an appetizer, entree or dessert to share.  The music committee will provide coffee and soda, feel free to bring wine or beer if you’d like. Send song requests or questions to the Music Committee at

Youth in action (photo essay)

In February, members of the First Parish Youth Group became the 5th group of Needham ambassadors to travel to New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina in 2005.  Each trip serves to strengthen the connection between our two communities and has become an important rite of passage for many youth and adults.  Below, you’ll see some of this year’s trip expressed in photos.  Enjoy! Continue reading…

Planet Earth screenings start this Sunday

By , March 6, 2014
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PLANET EARTH “JUNGLES,” a stunning 50-minute film, will be shown this Sunday, March 9, at noon in the Sanctuary. Please stay and see this film, awe-inspiring for all ages — or join us just for the screening! Next week, March 16, “Seasonal Forests” will be shown at noon in the Sanctuary. The culminating segment, “Living Together,” will be hosted by Interim Minister Rev. Katie Lee Crane and her husband, Dr. Jonas Barciauskas, and will be shown on Sunday, April 6 at 7 p.m. in the Sanctuary. 

Positively Aging March 11: Homeostasis: Balance or imbalance?

By , February 20, 2014
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What do we mean by homeostasis?  Various definitions talk about the need of one’s body to stay in balance in spite of external forces that threaten one’s equilibrium.  Another definition is that one’s body must function to attain the integrity of its physical being.  What does that mean for us?

As we age, various factors collude to create imbalance.  Physical imbalance is a major cause of falls.  Lack of exercise, isolation, illness, accidents, and loss often lead to temporary imbalance in our bodies and lives.  We have all developed ways to recover from these factors.  Sometimes they work, and sometimes they don’t.

At this session we’ll share some exercises designed to restore physical balance and some of our strategies for creating balance (homeostasis) in our mental and emotional lives.  We welcome your sharing and your questions.

Come for the program, followed by small group discussions, and then a simple soup and salad supper.  We want you to be there.

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

Dementia Family Forum workshop slated for Monday, March 24

Beverly Moore of StilMee, an Alzheimer coaching service, will present a two-hour workshop entitled “Dementia Family Forum” on Monday, March 24, at 7:15pm in the Parlor. Attendance is free but a small donation will be requested. Light refreshments will be available. The snow date is Monday, March 31, at 7:15pm.

The presentation will include an overview of different types of dementia, basics of the healthy brain and damaged brain, and how to work with different behaviors that may occur. Ms. Moore’s coaching practice focuses on how to ease the strain on caregivers through education. There will be time for Q and A, and handouts with information about how people with dementia think differently and practical advice about how to interact positively with them.

For many of our parishioners and especially for our Pastoral Care team this is a very timely subject where deeper understanding can ease the lives of many. The workshop is open to the public so if you know somebody who might be interested, please let them know–and please encourage those who may attend to drop us an email at to help us know how many to expect.

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