Now that Needham has been accepted into the Solarize Mass program, residents have an incredible, limited-time opportunity to have solar electric panels installed at substantially discounted prices. After a thorough vetting process, the Solarize Needham Team has selected Astrum Solar as Needham’s “One Trusted Installer.” Homeowners and businesses who sign contracts with Astrum Solar by June 30 will be eligible for the special discounts. Options will be available for outright purchase and for no-money-down arrangements.
To learn more, please come to the “Meet the Installer” night on Wednesday, March 5th, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. at Powers Hall in Needham Town Hall.
At this event the Solarize Needham Team will formally introduce Astrum Solar’s Needham representatives and will explain in detail what Astrum Solar has to offer. The goal for the night will be to answer any and all questions.
Can’t get to the meeting? Check out the Solarize Needham website at email@example.com or contact “Solar Coach” Artie Crocker at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Solarize Needham is a collaboration of the Mass. Clean Energy Center, the Mass. Dept. of Energy Resources, Green Needham Collaborative, our “One Trusted Installer” Astrum Solar, the Town of Needham and our Local Volunteers!
Breathtaking! Amazing! I’ve never seen anything like it! These are common reactions to the BBC’s incredible “Planet Earth” series. On two Sundays in March a 50-minute segment will be shown in the Sanctuary at noon. On March 9, the “Jungles” episode will be shown and March 16, “Seasonal Forests.” You can expect to see unforgettable footage of remote places and fascinating creatures, some of which have never before been filmed. These films are appropriate for all ages and engender a sense of awe and wonder that reinforces our commitment to care for the Earth.
On Sunday, April 6, the final episode of the series will be shown in the Sanctuary at 7 p.m., open to the public and hosted by Katie Lee and her husband, Dr. Jonas Barciauskas. “Living Together” presents prominent voices from scientists to theologians exhorting us to give our planet the respect and reverence it deserves as we work together to ensure its — and our — future. Watch for more information in the April bulletin.
The newly reconvened First Parish Music Committee is starting the work of hiring a new Music Director for the 2014-2015 season. In writing the job description for this critical role, we’re using multiple tools, including:
- Data gathered by the Transition Team’s surveys about music
- Conversations with the First Parish Choir, parents in the Children’s Choir, musicians at First Parish, various church Committees, and others
- A look back at the rich history of music here in our church
- Input from our experienced music staff, Roderick Phipps-Kettlewell and Kate Campe
- A “listening tour” of nearby UU churches by committee members for fresh ideas and inspiration
- The deep experience of the UU Musicians Network and other on-line resources
We’re also eager to hear more voices as we continue this work. Let us know what you want from music at First Parish – or any other ideas about music and community. Send us an email at email@example.com, talk to our music staff, or speak with any of our committee members: Carol Alper, Betty Byers, Andrea Goldberg, Cynde Hartman, Jim Sargent, John Smith, Becky Siebens, and Emily Weiland. We hope to have potential candidates for the new settled minister to consider, after he/she is called.
Emily Weiland and Becky Siebens
“There is nothing better than being in a class where no one knows the answer.” So said Lucy in Charles Shulz’s Peanuts. If this appeals to you, then Building Your Own Theology may as well.
What it is: a creative practice/class in which we will study theologies and work individually and collectively to define our personal theology and belief system.
The program is built on the UUA program Building Your Own Theology. Classes will meet for 8 sessions on Monday evenings from 7:15 to 9:15 with the initial sessions March 10 &17. Subsequent dates to be determined.
BYOT will be led by Jackie Shepherd and Mick Provencher. Class fee $10.
The Ministerial Search Committee just had the first of four weekends where we bring a Pre-Candidate to the Boston area to eat with us (Friday dinner, Saturday lunch and dinner, and Sunday lunch/brunch), Continue reading…
Roderick Phipps-Kettlewell, our Interim Music Director, will be presenting a FREE concert in the Parish Hall on Sunday, February 16th at 4:00 pm, with musicians visiting from St. Petersburg, Russia.
Soprano Maria Lyudko is an Honorary Artist of Russia and guest artist at the Bolshoi and Mariinsky Theaters, as well as the Komische Opera in Berlin. She has also performed for several Russian festivals in Boston, including at Jordan Hall and is laureate at several International Competitions. They will be joined by clarinetist Georges Devdariani who is also an actor and director.
The program will include arias by Mozart, Rossini, Donizetti and Gounod, along with Operetta and several Russian songs and romances.
Trained in England, France and at the Juilliard School, Roderick has performed and recorded as a piano soloist, as an accompanist, and as a chamber musician (including with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra) throughout America and in Europe, including at Carnegie’s Weill Hall. His 30+ classical and popular music CDs have sold over one million copies.
This is musical opportunity not to be missed! And tell your music-loving friends.
Did you know that First Parish has been a “Welcoming Congregation” since 1996, when less than 10% of UU congregations had voted to do so (compared to 64% today)? Have you ever wondered why or how we began our commitment to “welcome and celebrate the presence and participation of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons”? Join the Welcoming Congregation Committee to learn about our past history, discuss our ongoing commitment, and brainstorm new ideas. Whether you are already passionate about LGBTQ issues or want to learn more, please join us! For more information, contact Traci Abbott,firstname.lastname@example.org or DRE Mark LaPointe, email@example.com.
The General Assembly (GA) of our Unitarian Universalist Association is convening in Providence, Rhode Island, on June 25-29. It hasn’t come this close to home since GA in Boston in 2003. Give some serious thought to attending for a day or the entire event. For detailed information, go to: www.uua.org/ga.
GA is the annual meeting of our Association of Congregations… and it is so much more: five days of inspirational worship, impressive speakers, glorious music, workshops, activities and programs for adults, children and youth… and that’s just for starters. This year’s theme – Love Reaches Out – is designed to help us grow in spirit and in service, to help us follow our own paths to serve the world with love.
Perhaps you would like to go as an elected delegate to represent First Parish in Needham registering our vote for the issues that will be brought before the assembly. If so, speak to Wendy Blom, Katie Lee, or any member of the Parish Committee.
Your ministerial search committee has reached the point in the process where “the rubber meets the road,” as it were, and we start to have hard(er) conversations about this church and about the applicants we are considering.
We are pleased to announce that, as of January 25, we have narrowed the field to four highly qualified ‘pre-candidates,’ about whom we are all excited. They will be coming to the Needham area to interview in-person and to preach at nearby churches, so that we (the Search Committee) can see them in the pulpit. This is a very exciting and fun (and busy!) time to be a member of the Search Committee, and we are thankful for the trust and confidence you have placed it us. We look forward to the day when we can announce a candidate and introduce him/her to the congregation.
Those of you who were at church last Sunday heard me say during the announcements that all I could tell you was that nineteen ministers had applied to be our next minister. It turns out that’s not quite true.
TWENTY ministers applied (making us second only to a church in Chicago for number of applicants).
And, in case you’re curious, here’s a smattering of information about the applicants as a group:
- They range in age from their late 20s to their early-to-mid 60s
- They include ministers from all along the gender spectrum
- They include ministers from all along the sexual-orientation spectrum
- They include ministers up and down the East Coast, in the middle of the country, and on the West Coast
- They include recent seminary graduates, and those who have been ordained for over a decade
- Their theologies cover the range of UU belief systems – humanism, theism, panentheism. process theology, unitarianism, universalism, and others (and combinations of some or all of these. Don’t worry if you don’t know what some of these words mean – I didn’t either. Just know it’s a wide range of belief systems.
- They come from a wide range of religious backgrounds – Christian, Jewish, Atheist, and UU to name a few
- They come from a range of socioeconomic backgrounds as well
But one thing they all have in common: they are all their own selves, not defined by any of the categories I list above. Also, they are all kind, good-hearted people who, right now, seem to want nothing more than to engage in parish ministry and to find the right congregation with which to do so.
I’d say we’re off to a pretty good start. Stay tuned for more information.
Liz Rover Bailey, Chair
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