Weekly Update

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The email newsletter of First Parish in Lexington is published on Wednesdays at 4 pm. Submissions are due on Mondays at 10 am. Email submissions or inquiries to the church office.
  • Sunday Service

    What a joy that our faith leads us to rejoice in the midst of despair! Come to church this morning to be uplifted by the choir and by Rev. Anne’s message of hope. New life springs from the depths of the earth, and new hope rises from our belief in the victory of love over hate. Come and celebrate the joy of Easter.

    Rev. Anne Mason, Worship Leader

    Today is an all-ages service. The nursery will be open for babies and toddlers.

    On Easter Sunday, we will celebrate the Easter message with festive music for brass, organ, and choir. The sanctuary choir will sing Handel’s energetic “Hallelujah, Amen” (from Judas Maccabaeus) and Vermont composer Gwyneth Walker’s deeply moving “Hymn of Resurrection,” accompanied by a brass quartet. Elizabeth Walsh will sing Mozart’s thrilling “Alleluia” (from Exsultate, Jubilate, K. 165). For the centering music, Doug Baasch will play Rip Jackson’s lyrical piano and cello piece “Loving Duet” (from The Beatitudes: A Journey of Compassion, Justice and Love Triumphant). And for the postlude organist Rip Jackson and the brass quartet (Eyad Abbas and Tim Hoefler, trumpets; Sandra Conner and Eric Svensen, horns) will play Jean-Joseph Mouret’s triumphant “Fanfare in D Major.”

    Click here to listen to last week’s sermon by Rev. Anne Mason, “Stay Awake With Me.”
  • New UU Workshop – Register by Friday at Noon

    Are you new to First Parish and/or interested in learning more about Unitarian Universalism? Please come to the New UU Class, which will be held on Saturday, April 22nd from 9:00am to 12:00pm. The class is for new visitors to First Parish, new members, and anyone wanting a refresher! The class will include discussion about UU beliefs, the Seven Principles, the Six Sources, and the UU symbol – the flaming chalice. We will cover the benefits and responsibilities of membership at First Parish, what our motto Love, Seek, Serve means, our mission, and our covenant and why it is different from a creed. We will also speak about church governance and opportunities for connection and service.

    Please contact Rev. Anne Mason at 781-862-8200 x2 or minister@fplex.org or Polly Erickson, Members & Friends chairperson, at polly.erickson@rcn.com.

  • From Your Minister

    My heart is still singing from the beautiful, active, wonderfully participatory Installation. Thank you to every single person who contributed to this grand event. My family was so delighted to meet you all, and we are still talking about the many elements that were done so well – from the march of the Minutemen to the incredible reception. Thank you. Your support will sustain us all.

    We are in the midst of Passover and of Holy Week. These are sacred times, and people of our Jewish and Christian traditions are contemplating life and death and freedom from bondage. In the midst of this came the sad news of a Lexington teenager, Ilana Virgile, who has taken her own life. We all have worried that the stress level of our beloved children would one day become overwhelming for somebody. We grieve with Ilana’s family and with all of Temple Isaiah who mourn her loss.  

    If you or your children would like to talk about this outside of school, please know that my door is always open. Just call and confirm if you are coming. In addition, as you probably know, we host the Lexington Youth and Family Services here at First Parish. They will be open from 3-5 everyday this week, and from 3-6 on Friday. Any youth or family from First Parish are more than welcome to come and find support at LYFS, and benefit from their focus on teen suicide prevention.

    When I am faced with sadness such as the news of young Ilana, I see again the fragility and beauty of our lives. I hope that you will take time this week to hold each other tenderly, to share your feelings with others, and to recognize the sacredness in the life that you have. May this time of reflection bring you closer to the Holy. And may we find time to prepare for our Easter celebrations in the midst of all that is. It will be good to share the joy of life itself when we next see each other.

    In faith,
    Rev. Anne
  • Among Us

    Dorothy Smith has relocated to Minnesota, to spend her remaining days with her daughter. She is grateful, as am I, for all the members of First Parish who came to visit her over the past few months. Please keep the family in your thoughts as they spend this delicate time together.

  • Creative Callings this Thursday

    yarnAll are welcome to participate in an informal group of members and friends who enjoy fiber arts. On Thursday, bring your knitting, crocheting, beading or other fiber work and meet in the church parlor from 2:00 pm to 3:45 pm for a low-key time of fellowship, creativity, and sharing of ideas.

    Just drop by or email Karolyn Eisenstein to join the email list.

  • Office Closed

    The church office will be closed from Monday, April 17th through Wednesday, April 19th. Next week’s Weekly Update will be published on Thursday, April 20th. For pastoral emergencies, please call Rev. Anne at 781-862-8200 x2 or email her at minister@fplex.org.

    Lisa Maria Steinberg, DLRE, will be on vacation from April 17th through April 29th. Please email dre@fplex.org or call 781-862-8200 x3 for contact information while she’s away.

  • Patriots’ Day with Dan Fenn

    All are welcome to join Dan Fenn, a longtime member of the Lexington Minute Men Company, on Monday, April 17th at noon when he will present, “What Really Happened That Day?”, the fascinating real story of the events on April 19, 1775.  Free and open to the public.

    For information on all of the events that happen on Patriot’s Day in Lexington, as well as road closures and parking information, go to www.lexingtonma.gov/patriots-day-Lexington.

  • Nonfiction Book Group Upcoming Read

    The next meeting of the Nonfiction Book Group will take place on Tuesday, April 25th at 7:30pm in the Parlor.

    The discussion for this month will be on the New Yorker article  “A Science of the Soul” by Joshua Rothman, a Profile of Daniel Dennett from the March 27 issue of the The New Yorker. You can access the Dennett article online by clicking here.

    All are welcome!

  • Broadway Cabaret is coming!

    A Broadway Cabaret

    Sunday, May 7, 2017, at 3:30 PM

    First Parish in Lexington
    7 Harrington Rd. Lexington, MA

    Suggested Donation: $20/adults $10/Students and Seniors

    (More if you can and less if you can’t – all are welcome!)


    First Parish in Lexington will present a Broadway Cabaret on Sunday, May 7, 2017 at 3:30 PM. The concert will feature the First Parish sanctuary and children’s choirs and soloists, guest singers, and a pit band (piano, drums, electric guitar, electric bass, trumpets, horns, flute, saxophone and clarinet) performing solo and choral music from Broadway including selections from RentJesus Christ SuperstarAnnie, West Side Story and Show Boat. Suggested donation: $20/adults; $10/students and seniors (more if you can and less if you can’t – all are welcome!). For more information call the church at 781-862-8200 or visit www.fplex.org.

  • This Week in Social Action Ministry

    The Social Action Ministry (SAM) at First Parish comes from our Unitarian Universalist faith based on the values of love, justice, community and responsibility. We do this within the supportive environment of our broader church community and the mission of First Parish “…to act on our values to serve the larger community and create a more just and loving world.”


    Free Film Screening this Saturday – Before the Flood

    Please come to a free film screening of Before the Flood on Saturday, April 15th from 10:00am – 12:00pm. With Evan Seitz of UUMass Action and others.

    “Addressing climate change is the biggest challenge of our time. Come together in community to learn and be inspired to take action on behalf of our common home.”

    The Venue Theater, 1799 Massachusetts Ave, Lexington, MA. Doors open at 9:45am. Sponsored by First Parish Arlington, First Parish Bedford, First Parish Concord, First Parish Lexington, and Follen Church. Contact Stephen Shick or Dave Pollack for more information


    Political Activism

    We hope that you are well along on filing your taxes. We found it pretty annoying that we were being good citizens as we filed ours, but that our President has broken with tradition and not made his public as he promised after the election.  Aside from wondering what he is hiding, the lack of his tax information makes it almost impossible to identify possible or actual financial conflicts of interest.

    Heard enough? Come to the Tax Day Rally on Tuesday, April 18th (Tax Deadline) sponsored by your local Minuteman Indivisible Lexington. The rally will be held from 4-6 pm at Fletcher Park (the site of the Lexington Farmers Market in-season). Want to make your voice heard on a less-local scale, go to minutemanindivisible.org for lots of good, timely suggestions for action; click on the JOIN button to be put on our mailing list for a weekly Minuteman Muster of timely information and suggestions for action.


    UU Urban Ministry – Jericho Road Information Meeting

    Come hear and learn about a wonderful new program sponsored by the UU Urban Ministry. Jericho Road bridges communities by matching the professional talents of volunteers with the needs of community-based nonprofit organizations to promote community development, strengthen social services, and enrich the lives of volunteers.

    Thursday, April 27, 1:00pm, First Parish in Lexington. A light lunch will be served. This will be a joint information meeting of members from the Follen and Bedford churches. For more information please contact Al Jacobson.

    Jericho Road Roxbury, launched in late 2012, is a project of the Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry (UUUM). Utilizing the skills of professionals in UUUM-affiliated churches around the Boston area, as well as volunteers from elsewhere, Jericho Road Roxbury seeks to strengthen nonprofits in the neighborhood, supporting them to increase their capacity to build a healthier and more vibrant Roxbury.

  • Mayfair Online Signup

    Mayfair is less than a month away on Saturday, May 13th. If you can help with Mayfair, please sign up by clicking on this link.

    We need:

    • people to make a delicious lunch for our shoppers.
    • people to help set up, arrange, work the tables, and clean up. You don’t need to do everything, just something. We can use whatever help you can give us.
    • delicious baked goods and other comestibles.
    •  items to sell!

    Please start now to put aside items in these categories:

    • Jewelry
    • Treasures and collectibles
    • Books, CDs, DVDs
    • White elephants
    • Plants

    Sign up sheets will also be at the piano during social hour on Sunday.

    Please contact Amy Breiting or Marty Kvaal for more information.

  • Note from the Board
    Last Friday night was another “I’m so glad I was at First Parish” nights, when we hosted our second Voices on the Green program. Wonderful storytelling and talks (including by First Parishioners Shawna Yen, Larry Prusak, and Mary Brinton) and great music, all professionally staged and managed. The Board always viewed Voices as a way to attract newcomers to First Parish, so it was especially gratifying to see so many non-First Parishioners there — I’d say at least half the audience.
    The next Voices is scheduled for October.  I so hope that Voices becomes a permanent program at First Parish.  But this takes volunteers!  If you are interested in helping out, please contact any member of the Voices planning committee — David Rose, Deb Lapides, Regie O’Hare-Gibson and Laura Juitt.
    In fellowship,
  • Channing Memorial Fund Deadline April 26

    The Unitarian Universalist History and Heritage Society is currently holding a denomination-wide fundraiser to repair and restore the memorial stone for the Rev. William Ellery Channing at Mt. Auburn Cemetery. Channing’s 1819 Baltimore Sermon crucially defined and celebrated the emergence of Unitarianism, and his advocacy for education, reason, justice, and compassion led the first generation of our movement. Brochures for this project are available this morning at the piano. Donations can be made either through Faithify: https.//www.faithify.org/projects/help-preserve-channings-monument/ (where the contribution will be augmented by other UUA donors if the goal of $5000 is met), or by check to the UUHHS (memo line “Channing Memorial”), 670 High Street, Dedham, MA 02066. Please see Helen Cohen if you have a question. The deadline is April 26.

  • This Week at First Parish
    Wednesday, April 12
    Choir Rehearsal 7:30 p.m. Sanctuary
    Master Singers’ Rehearsal 7:30 p.m. Parker Hall
    Minuteman Indivisible 7:30 p.m. Parish Hall
    Thursday, April 13
    Five Wishes Program 11:30 a.m. Parish Hall
    Creative Callings 2:00 p.m. Parlor
    Meditation Group 4:00 p.m. Parlor
    Scrabble Club 7:30 p.m. Parker Hall
    Saturday, April 15
    Before the Flood Film Screening 10:00 a.m. The Venue Theater
    Sunday, April 16
    Easter Service 10:30 a.m. Sanctuary
    Monday, April 17
    Office Closed
    Dan Fenn Patriots’ Day presentation 12:00 p.m. Sanctuary
    Tuesday, April 18
    Office Closed
    Buildings & Ground Committee 7:00 p.m. Parlor
    Lexington Ski Club 7:00 p.m. Parker Hall
    Insight Meditation 7:30 p.m. Common Room
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