Weekly Update

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

    As we prepare for the Thanksgiving holiday, come to church and be with us in the here and now. This All Ages service will celebrate some of the many ways we engage with the Sacred — through ritual, song, poetry, and being in community — which helps us to remember that “What We Need is Here.”

    This Sunday, the First Parish children’s choir will sing a beautiful setting of “All Good Gifts” by Lon Beery. McKenna O’Hare Gibson will play an improvisation on the organ for the centering music. The Sanctuary choir will sing John Leavitt’s joyful arrangement of Handel’s “With the Voice of Joy and Thanksgiving” and Maurice Greene’s lovely anthem “Thou Visitest the Earth” with David Meharry singing the solo part. For the postlude, Rip Jackson will play Alfred V. Fedak’s bombastic organ work “Kingsfold Trumpet.”

    Rev. Anne Mason and Lisa Maria Steinberg, DRE, Worship Leaders
  • Special Plate Collection

    November’s special plate collection will be donated to Special Needs Arts Program, Inc. (SNAP), whose mission it is to “provide people with disabilities opportunities that celebrate each person’s unique abilities while cultivating creative expression, building peer relationships, and fostering self-esteem through life-enhancing activities in the arts.” We welcome Heidi O’Mara, Executive Director of SNAP, to our service this morning.

  • Upcoming 325th Events

    Washington/Madison Dialogue on Thursday, November 16th at 7:30 p.m.

    George Washington and James Madison will discuss the issues of church and state. Come and hear the views of two of our early presidents on an issue which still troubles us today. The event is free and open to the public.

    Luncheon and Program on Sunday, December 3rd

    At 12:00 p.m., there will be a colonial lunch catered by Chris Bateman of Lexx. The deadline for lunch reservations is this Sunday, November 19th. Tickets are $20 adult/$10 youth for the lunch and presentation. Please buy your ticket during social hour this Sunday or at the church office this week.

    At 2:00 p.m. there will be bell-ringing at the old Belfry and a procession to the church, followed at 3:00 p.m. by a dramatic presentation of the founding of First Parish in 1692 written by First Parish member and playwright Don Cohen, with colonial-era music and a flying overview of significant events in our history since then.

    Tickets for just the presentation are $10 adult/$5 youth.

    Please contact the church office with any questions.

  • The Great Fall Auction is this Saturday!
     The 2017 Great Fall Auction is Saturday night, November 18th at the church.  Doors open at 6 PM with finger food and beverages; silent auction is from 6-7:30 PM; live auction starts at 7:30 PM.  Come and be a part of this fun church social event! We will gratefully accept donations of finger food, wine, beer, and non-alcoholic beverages. You can view the catalog by clicking here.
    You do not need to be present to win!  If you see a live auction item you’d like to bid on but can’t attend the auction, fill out the proxy form by clicking here or email FallAuction@fplex.org with the item and your maximum bid.


    To reserve a childcare voucher, please email Lisa Maria Steinberg.

    See you Saturday night!

    The auction team,

    Toni and Pete Tasker, Margie and Bob Gibbons, and Tom Rich (chair)

  • Winter Outerwear Clothing Drive

    Thank you for all of the donations of gently used or new fall and winter outerwear for children, women and men. The box has been overflowing!

    The clothing will be donated to immigrants supported by WATCH in Waltham, which serves families with limited resources. (See http://watchcdc.org/index.php.)  Families particularly need winter jackets, coats, snowsuits, snow pants, hats, gloves or mittens, and boots. Rugged outdoor coats for men are especially appreciated (most of these guys have outdoor construction jobs).  Men’s sizes tend to be smaller (M and L, not XL usually), but WATCH can find a home for everything. Stylish coats for women are also a hit.

    The outerwear needs to be clean and in good condition, so it can be distributed without delay.

    Donations will continue through Sunday, December 3rd. Items may be brought to the Collection Center outside Jane’s office.

    Questions? Contact Marty Kvaal…and thanks!

  • Sarasa Ensemble Concert
    All are invited to the second of Sarasa Ensemble‘s concerts at First Parish this Sunday, November 19, at 3:30pm. This concert, entitled SACRO-PROFANUS, will be an opportunity to hear how spirituality and earthly pleasures form the basis of the human experience, two realms into which we are regularly pulled or pushed. Sarasa‘s November program offers a wonderful contrast of works that connect to our pious and secular natures. Sarasa is delighted to welcome back the brilliant and versatile tenor, Frank Kelley, and our regular favorite, Christina Day Martinson, violin, for this exciting  program, which includes Schubert’s “Rosamunde” Quartet in A minor. Music by Antonio Vivaldi, Arvo Pärt, Johann Heinrich Schmelzer and Dieterich Buxtehude will also be performed. For more information, visit www.sarasamusic.org.
  • SHYG is Selling Equal Exchange

    Image result for equal exchangeAlong with soup sales every Sunday, the Senior High Youth Group will be selling Equal Exchange products! Tea, chocolate, and coffee can now be purchased at the youth group sales table. Come and help us raise money for our service trip to the Pine Ridge Reservation this summer by buying organic and fair trade products grown by small farmers. They make great gifts! Please visit our table during coffee hour.

  • Thanksgiving Service

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    All are invited to “An Evening of Gratitude and Affirmation of Our Community” at Lexington’s annual Thanksgiving service on Tuesday, November 21st at 7:30pm at Grace Chapel Sanctuary, 59 Worthen Road. Sponsored by the Lexington Interfaith Clergy Association, this is a town event and open to people of faith, no faith, and everyone in between.

  • SOUL MATTERS : November 2017

    “What does it mean to be a people of ABUNDANCE?”

    Here is one of the 5 spiritual exercise options from which Soul Matters group members might select to focus on this month:

    The Abundance of Clutter

    Abundance gets in the way of abundance. Sounds silly but it’s true. Too much stuff leaves us trapped. An over-packed schedule leaves us feeling empty. Clutter – material or spiritual – acts like a cage, leaving us little room to move, or breath.

    There’s no better month than November to take on this clutter in our lives. Fall trees shed their leaves, inviting us to do some of the same. The holidays are right around the corner, with their yearly attempt to get us to pack even more into our lives.

    So find a few ways this fall to “declutter.” Of course, you will first need to figure out what that means to you. Often it is material clutter we need to tackle. Just as often it is spiritual clutter that needs addressed. Truth is, most of the time, it’s hard to separate the two.

    Whatever you decide to focus on, choose at least one strategy to address it. And remember that not all clutter is junk. Our work is not simply to throw the clutter out, but to sort through it. Almost always, there are gems buried in the mess.

    Here are some intriguing YouTube offerings/TED talks to inspire you on this topic:

  • Holiday Greens For Sale

    Poinsettias for the Sanctuary

    It’s time to plan for a festive sanctuary this holiday season! First Parish will be accepting orders for poinsettias from Wilson Farm beginning on Sunday, November 12th.

    The cost is $10.00 for a 6 1/2″ pot, with proceeds going towards the purchase of greens and other items for holiday decorating of the church. Order forms and payment (cash or checks made payable to First Parish in Lexington) are due on Wednesday, November 30th. Orders will not be accepted without payment. If you’d like your plant to be in honor or in memory of someone special, please include a message.

    Please fill out a form at the piano during social hour or contact the church office with any questions. Thank you!


    Wreaths for Sale 

    Ethan Showalter from Lexington Boy Scout Troop 119 (Pieter Svenson’s former troop) will be selling wreaths during social hour over the next few Sundays. The wreaths are $15 each. If interested in placing an order, please see him at the wreath sale table. Wreaths will be available for pickup or home delivery.

  • Successful Opening Reception for 325th Historical Exhibit

    On Thursday evening, November 9, eighty or more people gathered to look at the Exhibition of Historical Documents in celebration of First Parish’s 325th Anniversary and to hear Lexington Historian Sam Doran’s account bringing those early years to life. The exhibit, in Parish Hall, included a wide variety of items: the initial covenant of the congregation, the two earliest silver tankards in our historic communion service set, the Bible that Governor John Hancock gave First Parish in 1793 and the signature of our minister Jonas Clarke upon receiving it, genealogies of three current First Parish members Elaine Turano, John Oberteuffer, and Brenda Prusak, portraits of outstanding ministers, artistic renderings of our current buildings, the price range of pews in 1846, rosters of First Parish members who served in World War I and World War II, two of Nancy Earsy’s quilt collages about the Viet Nam war protests, and the rainbow flag.

    Sam Doran, in addition to giving his evocation of seventeenth-century Lexington, answered questions about public confessions, the split between church and town, ministerial funds paid by the residents, other religious institutions in town, and other important developments in our history.

    Thank you to Maureen Bovet and Lew Counts (prime movers), Elaine Turano, Anne Collins, Polly Erickson, Liz Adams, and the late Bill Smith, to whom the exhibit was dedicated, for the wonderful exhibit, which you can see from now through December 3; to Elisabeth Jas and her helpers (Judy Cole, Carolyn Fleiss, Marty Kvaal, and Sarah Matthews ) for the lovely refreshments and presentation; to Amy Jamison for tickets and flyers with the wonderful new steeple logo; to Bill Pittore for the sound system and for running the film of First Parish from the 1940’s and 50’s; to Anne Mason for helping with the film, for selling suncatchers and tickets, and for general cheerleading; to Jane Foley for myriad instances of facilitation; and to Bob Coughlin for help with set-up and clean-up.

  • Pet Loss Healing Circle

    Eliza Blanchard, Spiritual Nurture for Animal Caregivers

    Please join us in remembering and honoring the lives of our beloved animals on Sunday, December 3rd from 7:00 to 8:30pm. We will share silence, stories, readings, light candles, and remember, in the presence of others who understand. Open and free to all who have lost a pet, as well as those who anticipate such a loss.

    Led by Eliza Blanchard, caregiver to animal caregivers and spiritual director.

    Where? First Parish in Brookline, 382 Walnut St. (off of Route 9). Plenty of parking on the street. Call 774-551-6071 for more information.

    You can visit Eliza’s website here.

  • This Week at First Parish
    Wednesday, November 15
    Deb Abel Dance Class 1:30 p.m. Parish Hall
    Creative Callings 1:30 p.m. Parlor
    Choir Rehearsal 7:30 p.m. Sanctuary
    Master Singers Rehearsal 7:30 p.m. Parker Hall
    Thursday, November 16
    Meditation Group 4:00 p.m. Parlor
    Madison/Washington Dialogue 7:30 p.m. Sanctuary
    Scrabble Club 7:30 p.m. Parker Hall
    Friday, November 17    
    Roaring Jelly 7:00 p.m. Parish Hall
    Saturday, November 18    
    The Great Fall Auction 6:00 p.m. Parish Hall
    Sunday, November 19    
    Worship Service 10:30 a.m. Sanctuary
    Transgender Day of Remembrance 11:30 a.m. Front Steps
    Children’s Choir Rehearsal 11:45 a.m. Yellow Room
    Social Action Meeting 12:00 p.m. Parker Hall
    Sarasa Ensemble Concert 3:30 p.m. Sanctuary
    OWL 4:00 p.m. Parker Hall
    SHYG 7:00 p.m. Common Room
    Monday, November 20
    Staff Meeting 11:00 a.m. Minister’s Office
    Deb Abel Dance Class 3:30 p.m. Parish Hall
    LYFS Board Meeting 7:00 p.m. Parker Hall
    Choir Rehearsal 7:00 p.m. Sanctuary
    Climate Justice Collaborative 7:30 p.m. Common Room
    Tuesday, November 21
    Deb Abel Dance Class 4:00 p.m. Parish Hall
    Lexington Ski Club 7:00 p.m. Parker Hall
    Empty Sky Sangha 7:30 p.m. Common Room
    Master Singers Rehearsal 7:30 p.m. Sanctuary
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