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Continuously Updated News From First Parish Unitarian Universalist of Arlington, MA

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planet earth

Sunday Worship Service

Youth Service

Sunday, March 1 ♦ 10:00 am

Join us for a youth-planned and lead service this Sunday! The youth group has been working hard to organize this service, and they are excited to share their ideas, stories, art and music with the congregation! This year's worship theme is "Exploration." All components of the service (music, decorations, readings, etc.) will tie into the greater theme.

As the youth have been preparing this worship service, they have simultaneously been planning for their own exploratory service trip to Washington D.C. this coming June. On Sunday we will have two offering plates -- one to be collected for their service trip (aimed to reduce costs and fund scholarships) and one traditional plate.

Join us on Sunday to support the youth and to explore your personal experiences, ideas and mind!




Unequal JusticeUnequal Justice: The Consequences of Race and Class in Our Criminal Justice System

Saturday, February 287:00 pm - 9:00 pm at Arlington's Town HallDoors open and refreshments at 6:30 pm

First Parish is one of 24 co-sponsors of this important panel that is being organized by Arlington's Vision 2020 Diversity Task…

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rules of engagement book cover

Women's Book Group 

Thursday, March 5, room TBD.

"The Rules of Engagement"
by Anita Brookner 

Email Jean Nagle at jsn0708 @ if you need the offsite address.

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prison wallA Road Map Towards Justice: How to End Mass Incarceration in Massachusetts

Saturday, March 14, in the sanctuary gather for social time at 1:00 pm, program from 1:15 pm to 4:30 pm

Come learn about the bills related to mass incarceration and prison reform that might become law in the next two years, and how you can help…

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dove and nukesAbolish Nuclear Weapons

Coffee Hour this Sunday in the Vestry

The Social Justice Committee has established a Nuclear Disarmament Task Force whose immediate objective is to support a world-wide “Peace and Planet Mobilization” to abolish nuclear weapons. The Nuclear Disarmament Task Force will have a table in the vestry…

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laura wagnerAlliance Sunday with Laura Wagner

Sunday, March 15 ♦ 10:00 am

Please join us for the Alliance Sunday service on March 15! The service will feature UU Mass Action Executive Director Laura Wagner, whose sermon is entitled "The Power of Being a Faith Community." What does it mean to be part of a faith community? How do we…

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this changes everyrthing book cover

Green Sanctuary Reading Group: This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate

Third Tuesdays, 7:30 pm in the Vestry ♦ next meeting March 17

The Green Sanctuary and Climate Vigil groups invite everyone to share in reading and discussing Naomi Klein's "This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate," which…

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heart in pieces

Living with the Loss of a Parent: Sponsored by Lay Ministry

Monday March 23 7:15 pm to 8:45 pm in the Parlor

Join Lay Ministry and others from First Parish for an evening of support and fellowship as explore the feelings and issues that arise following the death of a parent. If you can, please let us know that you…

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red tulips

Think Spring! Think Gardens!

The huge piles of snow will be gone soon, and it will be time to design and plant the garden area near First Parish's new elevator. Church members will be donating plants from their gardens, and special memorial trees may be planted. Each year the Alliance organizes donations of plants for…

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check mark and boxes

First Parish Passover Seder date poll

Easter and Passover overlap this year, which makes scheduling the Seder particularly tricky. The First Parish Jewish Connections group has created a very short survey to find out what dates are best for people who wish to attend. 

If you would like to attend the First Parish…

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painting of country road and moon

Would You Like to Participate in Music Sunday?

The First Parish Music Program will present Mark Miller’s Song of the Open Road at the March 29 Service. This is Walt Whitman’s poem set to music by African-American Composer Mark Miller in 2005. There is a small chamber ensemble with the work for a small number of…

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hand bells

Interested in Bell Ringing?

Did you enjoy seeing/hearing First Parish’s Hand Bells at our wonderful rededication service last week? Perhaps you’d like to hear more, or have a go at ringing yourself? Anyone interested should contact Jennifer Kobayashi at jhkob @ and Jonathan Brennand at jonathan @…

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toy house held in hands

Marta Recommends: Communities Reaching out to Support Homeless Families

Eleventh Annual Forum on Family Homelessness
Sunday, March 1, 2015, 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm
First Parish in Bedford, 75 Great Rd., Rt. 62, Bedford Center.

Never have there been more homeless families in Mass. Each night, nearly 3,100 families are in…

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men's groupFirst Parish Men's Group

Next up: Sunday, March 8 ♦ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

The First Parish Men's group provides a forum in which we help each other with spiritual, emotional, and personal questions and concerns. Discussion themes often interweave questions of security, identity, authenticity, and purpose. We provide a…

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Sign Up to Bring Sunday Flowers!

Follow this link to use our online flowers signup form

Once again, the Alliance is coordinating Sunday flowers! Individuals in the congregation can provide an arrangement for the Sanctuary to remember loved ones or acknowledge a milestone. We can assist in ordering an arrangement…

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connection card

Get Connected/Stay Connected with First Parish

We invite newcomers to First Parish to fill out a Connection Card to receive our weekly email bulletin, give us your contact information, and (if you wish) indicate your interest in various aspects of life in our community. You can find the Connection Cards every Sunday…

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cartoon of man with bullhorn

How to Request a Spoken Announcement or Submit a News Item

Send requests for Sunday morning spoken announcements to announce @ Requests will be forwarded to the Worship Associates every Friday. Please note that Spoken Announcements must be relevant to the whole congregation, and will likely be…

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video header

Enjoy this video about First Parish and our efforts to live up to our mission with our Meetinghouse Campaign. Many thanks to Joel Olicker of Powderhouse for creating this!




faith symbols

New UU Class

Wednesdays, March 18 and 25 and April 1 ♦ 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm in the Parlor

Are you new to First Parish and the UU faith? Are you contemplating joining First Parish? Are you seeking ways to get more involved? Please consider…

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architect's drawing of new buildingStewardship Lunch and Conversation

Sunday, March 8 ♦ 11:30 am - 1:00 pm

Plan to stay for a yummy lunch after the service on Sunday, March 8! Instead of coffee hour we will break into small groups and use our newly renovated spaces to share a…

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construction at first Parish

Construction Slideshow!

Check out this slideshow created by Joel Olicker that documents First Parish's renovation project!

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now hiring notice

Job Opening: Weekday Sexton/Coffee Hour Assistant

We seek an experienced, resourceful, and reliable Sunday Sexton to manage the facilities required for Sunday service and post-service coffee hour. Please click here for the Sunday Sexton job…

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Get Connected with Our New Online Photo Directory and Database!

First Parish is excited to announce our new online Photo Directory and Database! Joining this online directory will allow you to:

  • match names and faces
  • get contact information…
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clipboard with "building briefing"

Brief Briefing: Shared Ministry

Sunday, March 1 ♦ 11:30 am in our NEW location in Stanton Parlor!

Shared Ministry hosts the next Brief Briefing on Sunday, March 1. Contact communicationscommittee @ with questions.

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re announcements

re img

Religious Education Announcements


Youth Group Worship Service: Sunday, March 1: Grades 5, 6, 7 and 8 (Coming of Age) are encouraged to sit in the balcony with their teachers/mentors to enjoy this youth led worship service on the theme of "Exploration."

OWL Parent Meeting: Sunday, March 8, 7:00 pm in the Sanctuary. This mandatory meeting (for those whose older children have not taken the class) is an opportunity to learn more about the curriculum, meeting the teachers and ask…

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youth group members

Youth Group Announcements

Saturday, February 28
4:00 pm - 7:00 pm: MANDATORY Rehearsal for service

Don't forget: Weekly Homework Club!
Friday afternoons from 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm here at church!! We know you’re super busy, and Sunday nights are usually Homework Time. Let’s shift that to Fridays! Come on down with homework, good cheer, and the goal of getting lots of work done so you can come to Youth Group!


Sunday, March 1
10:00 am: Youth group Worship Service!
6:45 pm -…

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STAR: spirit, transormation, adventure, reflection

playbillPolitical Actors: Portrayals of Presidents in the Performing Arts

Presented by Woody Kay Monday, March 16 7:00 pm -8:30 pm in the Parlor

Our favorite Professor of Political Science at Northeastern ("Woody!") will give us a tour of U.S. presidents as seen in stage plays, musicals, film, and…

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sun streaming through woods

Democracy and Radical Inclusion: Whose Voices Matter?

Next Up: Date TBD -- "Doing Democracy: A Participant's View" with John Hodges 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm in the Parlor

Of the spiritual values in our UU principles, one that stands out in contrast to like statements in many other denominations…

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pen and ink

Contemplating Poetry

First Monday of Each Month
Next up: March 2 ♦ 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
in in Damon 

"People turn to poems for some kind of illumination, for revelations that help them to survive, to survive in spirit not only in body."
~ Denise Levertov

This gathering uses a "listening to,…

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aging well logo

Aging Well Within Our Community

Next up: March 26 at First parish

Aging Well in Our Community is an open women's group for women over 50 that meets monthly on Thursday mornings from 10:00 am - noon. The meeting room info will be sent to all on the Aging Well mailing list. If you would like…

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Lectio Divina

Lectio Divina

Tuesdays ♦ 7:00 am - 8:00 am in Tobey Lounge
and Thursdays ♦ 8:00 am - 9:00 am in Tobey Lounge

Lectio Divina is a method of reading and listening, lingering with, and sharing personal responses to selected biblical or other texts. Diverse responses to the text provide new…

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social justice section header

shelf of groceries

Giving First Recipient for March: Arlington Food Pantry

A year ago First Parish joined a number of other Arlington churches in pledging financial and volunteer support to the Arlington Food Pantry. Out of this effort came the opportunity to help open a second “satellite” location at the former…

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"living our faith"

Living Our Faith: Organizations Supported by First Parish Members

In January 2013, the Social Justice Committee held a service entitled "Living Our Faith." A list of organizations that congregants meaningfully support was started that morning as people who attended the service were invited to…
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ryp afterschool students

UU Urban Ministry Volunteer Positions

The UU Urban Ministry is looking to fill a number of volunteer positions. Could one be a match for you?

Tutor English as a Learning Language (ELL)
When: Monday or Wednesday mornings (10:00 am - 12:00 pm) at the UU Urban Ministry.
What: Join our team of…

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Arlington Food Pantry

Collection baskets are located at the front and office doors.

Monetary donations can be sent to:

The Arlington Food Pantry
Health and Human Services
27 Maple Street
Arlington, MA 02476

The Food Pantry can always use juice, jelly, cereal, things from baked goods aisle…

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cartoon of scissors and thread

Stitch and Sew Workshops

Thursdays, 10:30 am, meet offsite

Note: Over the summer, we will be meeting at various offsite locations. Please contact Jean Nagle at 781-646-5352 or jsnagle @ for the location each week.

Calling all sewers, knitters and crafters: please join a group…

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Join the Climate Change/Climate Action Vigil After Coffee Hour!

Sundays, 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm

Please come join us for the weekly Climate Action Vigil on Sunday after coffee hour! And please stop by our table at coffee hour for information, sharing ideas, and discussion! If you'd like to join…

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painting of woman knitting

Prayer Shawl Ministry

Do you like to knit or crochet?  Would you like to provide support to members of the congregation? Our supply of prayer shawls is running low and we could use your help. Participants in the First Parish Prayer Shawl Ministry knit or crochet prayer shawls for Marta or the…

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hand ringing a chime bowl

The First Parish Meditation Group Welcomes You

Please join us! We hold a drop-in meditation at the church on Mondays (gather at 6:00 pm and start at 6:15 pm in the Sanctuary). We also have a new location for our Sunday morning drop-in (gather at 9:00 am, start at 9:10 am at the West Medford…

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Compassionate Communication

Check back soon for new meeting location and time

Please note: Currently, there is only one Compassionate Communication group at First Parish.

This group, nicknamed the "Giraffes," consists of some experienced participants and some people who are new (or feel they…

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First Parish Music Programs

Click here for information on First Parish music programs for youth and adults.

Concerts by First Parish Musicians

The Musical Connections page on the First Parish website provides information on concerts and events with First Parish musicians participating. Click

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Diversity/Inclusion Group

All interested First Parish folks are invited to meetings of the Diversity/Inclusion Group (D/IG). Our mission: to work together to make First Parish as welcome and inclusive as we can be and to assist outside efforts with a similar goal. We define diversity to include…
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Green Sanctuary Practices

The Green Sanctuary Group recognizes that we all have a responsibility to be mindful of the environmental consequences of our choices for the sake of the human community now on earth, future generations, and endangered species.

All are welcome to join us in working for a…

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