Current News

Black Lives of UU

Conversation with Kenny Wiley
Monday, January 9th, 7-9pm in the Parlor

Join the Racial Justice Task Force for a conversation with UU World senior editor Kenny Wiley about Black Lives Matter from a Unitarian Universalist perspective. Wiley is a leader in Black Lives Matter: 5280 of Colorado and the national Black Lives of UU movement; he also serves as the Director of Faith Formation at Prairie UU Church outside of Denver.


New Year’s Needham at First Parish

As usual, First Parish will be a hub of activity for the New Year’s Needham celebration. All events in Parish Hall. This year’s schedule includes:

  • 3pm — The Great Plain Squares. Have fun with fast-paced energizing square dancing. No experience needed.
  • 5:30pm — West Newton Ceili Band. The West Newton Ceili Band delights you with jigs, reels, and other dance tunes, as well as soulful singing of Irish ballads. Come experience the sound of a fine traditional Irish session!
  • 8—9pm — Meeting Across the Water. Exploring gospel and American roots music from the 1850s to the present, including black gospel street tunes from the mid-1900s and post-World War II music, along with band members’ original folk and gospel tunes. The band’s music springs from the band ‘s deeply-held belief that African-American and white spiritual traditions can inspire and connect with each other. MATW concerts are joyful , uplifting, audience-involving celebrations and explorations of the human condition.
  • 9—10pm — Carolyn Waters. A Homegrown favorite, Carolyn fuses blues, jazz, roots and other musical genres as she performs from her catalog of beautifully crafted original songs and carefully selected covers. Her voice and stage presence have been described as powerful, soulful, rare, head turning, captivating and compelling. Come hear why Carolyn is the performer music lovers look forward to every year.
  • 10—??? — Chris Pahud and the Rounders. Eclectic evening of folk music, poetry, and a touch of indie. Chris Pahud, Tom Smith, Cheryl Perreault, and Steve Rapson are back with guest poet Bill Thibodeau. Bill, a founding member of the Carpenter Poets of Jamaica Plain. performs his poetry throughout Greater Boston, and has appeared on PBS and The Hallmark Channel. He joins one of NYN’s longest-running shows—Chris Pahud and the Rounders—ever popular for their fun, home-spun, original folk sound. Come smile, nod along, and welcome in the new year with music that stands the test of time and spoken word performances that enchant.

$5 NYN button are required for admission and can be bought at the venue or at several local stores. For more info, visit

Help Decorate First Parish with Your Photos

One of the tasks of the Interior Arrangement Committee is to display interesting, engaging artifacts and pictures in the church.  To showcase the vibrant life at First Parish, we would like to display rotating photos that feature the many activities that people are involved in.  If you are involved in such an event, please email us your photos at maryann.oldfield or We will be enlarging and putting up changing photos in the hallway outside Parish Hall.  If you don’t want to have your photo shown, please let us know.


Upcoming Grief and Loss Support Group

Loss is a universally shared aspect of our lives.  Research tells us that the support of others can lighten the burden of grief when we’ve suffered the loss of a loved one, a job, a relationship, or one’s health, as examples.   On Sunday, December 11, the Pastoral Care Team is launching a group for those seeking mutual support in their loss.  The  group facilitator is Andrea Goldberg, licensed social worker and First Parish member, who brings both professional and personal perspective to this topic.  Join us after church in the Kiel Room, classroom 3, downstairs from 12 – 1:30. RSVP to Janet Klein if you plan to come, or just join us on December 11.

Listening Sessions with the Making Room Task Force

2016-in-gathering-18-all-churchHow can we expand the capacity of the sanctuary?  What are the advantages and disadvantages of growing our membership in the first place?  The Making Room Task Force is holding three listening sessions in early December to hear your opinions on various strategies.  We will be meeting on Sunday December 4 at 12:30pm in the sanctuary, Wednesday December 7 at 4pm in the parlor, and Sunday December 11 at 9:30am in the parlor.  Come tell us what options you find palatable and which ones are completely unacceptable.

The members of the Making Room Task Force are Amy Brown (RE), Ross Donald (Music), Eliot Jekowski (Parish), Jim Leffingwell (Worship), Kay Taylor (Membership), and Darren Zinner (Ministry).

For more background on this issue, read the blog posts by Darren Zinner and Eliot Jekovsky.

Annual Holiday Sing-a-long

Sunday, December 18
4-5:30pm in Parish Hall

Celebrate the season with an all-ages sing-along in Parish Hall. The event is hosted by the Music Committee.  Kate Loftus-Campe will lead the songs with accompaniment by Jim Sargent. We’ll provide lyrics and take requests.  There will be hot tea & cocoa as well as cookies to enjoy as we sing our favorite carols. Take a break from the hustle and bustle to enjoy cheery songs with family and friends.


Positively Aging Annual Holiday Party

Tuesday, December 13, at 4pm in the parlor

Positively Aging will have its annual Holiday Party Tuesday December 13 at 4:00 in the parlor. We’ll have our usual unplanned potluck, and drinks will be provided.
In the past, we have brought childrens’ books to give to the Home for Little Wanderers. This year, we have a special opportunity to contribute books. Continue reading…

End-of-year Giving Basics

By , November 15, 2016
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What was that pledge letter I got in October all about?

In February each year the Stewardship Committee opens the pledge campaign to fund next year’s First Parish budget.

Each household that is active within First Parish is asked to commit—or pledge—an amount that is generous to give in the coming year. Pledging is the commitment to give. For example, in February 2017 we will be committing to give money for the church year July 1, 2017 – June 30, 2018. Continue reading…

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