The E-Bulletin

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

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Sunday Worship

How to Make A Spiritual Shift

Sunday, March 26 ♦ 10:00 am

Rev. Marta Flanagan preaching.

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step up choir

It’s time to STEP UP First Parish!

Looking for a quick music fix? Do you enjoy the sound of your voice reverberating in the shower or in the car on your way to work (or perhaps on the Red Line)? Then be a part of the STEP UP Choir. This new choir is open to all interested singers, x-factor fans or those wishing to…

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To Be in Solidarity with Muslim Americans

Recommendations from the Racial Justice Coordinating Committee

Muslim-American civil rights organizations need our support. The Massachusetts chapter of CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations) has received a request for help from a Muslim person in our Commonwealth…

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blood drive

Blood Drive April 1 -- Volunteers Needed!

Saturday, April 1 ♦ 8:00 am to 2:00 pm

No fooling, we having a blood drive on Saturday, April 1, sooner than you might have been thinking! The weather has interfered with scheduled blood drives in many parts of the country, so please give soon if you can. Thank you! Donors…

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Youth Group Music and Art Benefit

Saturday, April 1 ♦ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm 

Come enjoy burritos and beautiful music from local bands as you bid on art created by youth from this community! Tickets are $5 at the door, with proceeds going towards funding the Youth Group service trip. Free childcare… Read More

cartoon of scissors and thread

Stitch & Sew Returns

Thursday, April 6 ♦ 10:30 am in Pierce

April 6 will be the start of the weekly gathering of people to knit, sew, talk, eat lunch and  prepare items for the November Harvest Fair. Everyone invited to come or let us know if you can prepare items at home that would be appropriate for the Stitch…

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Clean It/Fix It Day

Saturday, April 22 ♦ 8:00 am - 12:00 pm

The Property Committee has scheduled a Clean It/Fix It Day at First Parish on Saturday, April 22. The buildings will be open from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm for members of the congregation to come help with spring cleaning of our spiritual home. You do not need…

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aids walk

Join First Parish's AIDS Walk Team!

Sunday, June 4

Join our First Parish AIDS Walk Team for our second year. Info and flyers will be available at our table in the vestry after Sunday's service. Please take a flyer and post it in places you frequent. Thank You! Questions? Contact Team Captain Inez Folsom at

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becoming nicole

Becoming Nicole: Book Discussion

Sunday, March 26 ♦ 12:15 pm to 2:00 pm in Bailey

Arlington Reads Together has announced Becoming Nicole as this year’s community read title. Nicole Maines and her father Wayne recently spoke at Arlington's town hall to an audience in the hundreds. 

Becoming Nicole is the inspiring…

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Join Us for Food and Fellowship at First Parish Potlucks!

March 26 11:45 am to 1:00 pm in the Parlor

We're organizing a series of Potlucks at First Parish to give people an opportunity to get to know each other in a relaxed setting. Everyone is welcome. Please bring a dish to share (anything is fine -- it's truly…

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RIM International Concert -- Support our Asylum Seekers 

March 30, 7:00 pm ♦ 26 Washington St., Malden

Please join the Refugee Concerns Working Group for a fun evening of international music at the 10th annual Refugee Immigration Ministry (RIM) International Concert. Tickets are $20.00 with proceeds benefit RIM.…

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Historical and Future Trajectories of Black Lives Matter and Unitarian Universalism

Friday, March 31, in Boston ♦ Saturday, April 1, in Cambridge

The Racial Justice Coordinating Committee invites you to the 2017 Minns Spring Series. Who were the African American leaders in Unitarian, Universalist, and Unitarian…

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Tulips for Easter

Order deadline: Sunday, April 2

E-mail your order and dedication to Sara Haugland at fpuuarl.eam @

Make our sanctuary festive this Easter Sunday by ordering a colorful potted tulip! Memorialize a loved one or mark a life event. For example, "In loving memory of Zo Smith, beloved…

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bunny in easter bonnet

In your Easter Bonnet, with All the Frills Upon it...Easter Hat Making Begins Next Week!

April 2 and 9 ♦ following the service, in the Vestry

Imagine the sanctuary filled with decorative hats on Easter Sunday morning, April 16! Welcome Spring by having fun decorating your very own Easter Bonnet, baseball cap or…

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older mens group

Calling Older Men

Thursday, April 6 ♦ 12:00 pm in the Parlor

First Parish is organizing a monthly fellowship gathering for older First Parish men, aimed at reinforcing camaraderie and providing a forum for discussing topics of general interest. We meet on the first Thursday of each month. These are brown-bag…

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Between the World and Me

Women's Book Group 

Thursday, April 6, 7:15 pm in Damon

"Between the World and Me"
by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Email Jean Nagle at womensbookgroup @ with questions.

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Order Your First Parish Social Action T-Shirt

Show Your Faith While You Live It ♦  Order by April 10!

As we take part in rallies, vigils, Action Sunday, and other activities outside our walls, we now can wear T-shirts that show we are from First Parish and declare what calls us to action. With a beautiful, bold,…

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First Parish Passover Seder

Saturday, April 15 ♦ 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm

Our UU Seder is welcoming to families, singles, and all ages. Participants bring a dish made from the recipes we provide, and a bottle of wine or grape juice, to the shared potluck. All are welcome at the Seder, but advance sign up is…

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swedish chef

Calling All Cooks!

We need your help to restock the lay ministry freezer. Soothing soups and easily digested casseroles are especially welcome. Brings your offerings in containers that are labeled with both date and the ingredients to the lay ministry freezer in the church kitchen. Thanks so much for your very…

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Refugee Concerns Working Group

There are currently more refugees around the world than at any time since World War II. The Refugee Concerns working group enables First Parish members to become active in a variety of efforts addressing the global refugee crisis.

Our current focus is working with Refugee Immigration…

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Show Your Creative Side at the Congregational Art Show

Greetings First Parish Artists!

We are looking forward to our annual Congregational Art Show the end of April. What have you been doing lately? Please join our exhibit of paintings, photos, collages, fabric, weaving, pottery, jewelry, whatever!

We will hang…

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Who Can Speak for First Parish?

A reminder about First Parish’s Public Witness Policy

In this time of increased political activity, it might be helpful to remind folks about how First Parish speaks and acts in the world beyond our walls. All First Parish members should know four basic points:

1) Anyone can speak…

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values in action

First Parish Signs Declaration of Conscience

The Parish Committee recently voted to sign, on behalf of First Parish Arlington, a Declaration of Conscience that was drafted by our Unitarian Universalist Association and UU Service Committee. Individuals are also invited to sign this Declaration of Conscience, which…

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Sunday Morning Baking

Have you enjoyed the fresh baked goods coming out of the kitchen at coffee hour on many Sundays this year? Would you like to be on a team that bakes? Each baking team has a chief (who picks a recipe, shops and gives direction) and 4-6 helpers who bake and then serve their wares on trays after…

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First Parish Arlington Stands with Muslims, Refugees, Immigrants

Unitarian Universalists affirm the inherent worth and dignity of every person. We therefore stand against any effort to exclude, stigmatize, or ban any group of people.

Hundreds of people recently came to a candlelight vigil on our lawn to protest the…

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Patterns: Abstracts in Nature – Photography by Larry Osgood

In the Parlor until April 16

Envision spring (and summer and fall) with the beautiful nature photography of First Parish member Larry Osgood at his solo photography show Patterns: Abstracts in Nature. These large photographs (3 to 5 feet) printed on…

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snoopy in the snow

Big Snow!

When snow comes, you may wonder if First Parish is open. In case of a storm on a Sunday, a notice is posted on the website at by 7:30 am if worship and/or religious education classes are cancelled. An all-First-Parish email is also sent out. The decision to close on a Sunday is made by…

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community circle

Black Lives Matter and our Restorative Justice Process

Last winter First Parish entered into a restorative justice process with a man who had vandalized our Black Lives Matter banner.  We are especially grateful for the Arlington Police and the Center for Restorative Justice for making this possible. In November…

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handbell choir

Join Our Handbell Choir!

Thursdays, 7:00 pm in the Sanctuary

Come ring chimes with us! Our bell choir rehearses in the Sanctuary on Thursdays at 7:00 pm for just under an hour before choir starts at 8:00 pm. You are welcome to join us! We have plenty of chimes (3 octaves) but we could use a few more people to ring…

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Participate in Music at First Parish

The Music Committee and Music Director welcomes anyone interested in participating in music this year. There are a multitude of opportunities including the Adult Choir, Children’s Choir, Bell Choir, as well as instrumental groups such as the C-Winds and other ad hoc groups. For…

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Sign Up to Bring Sunday Flowers!

Follow this link to use our online flowers signup form

The flowers that grace our Sanctuary on Sunday mornings are donated by parishioners, often with a special dedication that is printed in the order of service. The Flower Coordinator can assist in ordering an arrangement from…

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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…

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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…

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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!


congspot 3 23 17

Action Sunday is Coming!

On Sunday, April 30, after a very brief service here, we will go out to participate in various volunteer opportunities around greater Boston. You will have 11 different options, but you have to sign up in advance. Please click here for complete information about our volunteer opportunities. Please sign up by April 10, either on the website or at the Action Sunday table at Coffee Hour on April 2 or April 9. Some…

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Marta Recommends:
Climate Action, Economic and Racial Justice, Money in Politics: Make Your Voice Heard at the State House!

Sunday, April 2 ♦ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm in the Parlor.

Rev. Marta Flanagan and the Climate Action Working Group invite you to a soup lunch and workshop on how to get your voice and your values heard at the State House. Prepare for the UU Mass Action Advocacy Day held this year on Tuesday, April 11 — Learn about climate…

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uu mass action

Marta Recommends:
Speak Up for Your Values: Register Now for UU Mass Action Advocacy Day

Tuesday April 11 ♦ 10:00 am - 4:00 pm at Arlington Street Church and State House

Rev. Marta Flanagan calls this, "One of the most effective opportunities to live your faith available to us. With the training and the camaraderie of the day, it's easy and fun to make an impact." On Advocacy Day, April 11, you’ll receive training on five key legislative…

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Leadership Developlment

Come Meet with the Leadership Development Committee! 

The month of March is the time the Leadership Development Committee (LDC) works with First Parish Leadership to engage each of you in becoming an active part of our large and vibrant community. Let us help you expand your connections and talents here at First Parish. Check us out at coffee hour, fill out a talent survey, get questions answered, or tell us what you are thinking about…

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Think Summer!

No, it is not to soon to be thinking of summer...Summer Services at First Parish that is! Have you ever thought of leading a service here at First Parish? All summer services are lay led, giving members an opportunity to get creative with many of the aspects of worship. Have you had a sermon idea bouncing around in your head? Perhaps you’ve been wanting…

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re announcements

re img

Religious Education Announcements

Spring is in the air! This Sunday marks the last week of our winter term. Parents, please take a moment to thank the wonderful volunteers who have shared their time and love with our children.

Tina Recommends this website to learn more about Raising Race Conscious Children

Teacher Transition Breakfast, Sunday March 26, 9:00 am, in the Parlor for winter and spring teachers.

It's Evaluation Time for our Religious Education Program, including morning and…

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yg img

Youth Group Announcements

Dear Youth Group, the Music and Art Benefit approaches! Help contribute to this amazing event by: selling tickets to friends and family! contributing art to our art auction! helping set-up and clean-up! helping with tasks during the event, including: babysitting, overseeing art, or selling burritos.

Here are some important dates coming up:

Sunday, March 26, 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm: Youth Group Band Rehearsal – Please come prepared to rehearse your songs! Check with…

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STAR: spirit, transormation, adventure, reflection

aging well

Aging Well Within Our Community

Thursday, April 27 ♦ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm in the Parlor 

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. If you would like more information or will be attending Aging Well…

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Lectio Divina

Lectio Divina

Tuesdays ♦ 7:00 am - 8:00 am in the Parlor
and Thursdays ♦ 8:00 am - 9:00 am in the Parlor

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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man reading under tree

Contemplating Poetry

Third Monday of Each Month
Monday, April 17  7:30 pm – 8:30 pm 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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social justice section header


Refugee Concerns Working Group

There are currently more refugees around the world than at any time since World War II. The Refugee Concerns working group enables First Parish members to become active in a variety of efforts addressing the global refugee crisis.

Our current focus is working…

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teen empowerment

Giving First Recipient for March: Center for Teen Empowerment

The Giving First recipient for March is the Center for Teen Empowerment, which employs low-income and high-risk urban youth to address the most pressing issues in their communities by organizing their own initiatives that build…

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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…

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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…

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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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men's group

First Parish Men's Group

Next up: Sunday, April 2 ♦ 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,…

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Jacob's Mother

First and Third Sundays ♦ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm at First Parish

Are you having more challenges with your child's behavior than most parents? Do you feel like your family and friends do not get what you go through? Join us for a change to get support from other parents and…

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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…

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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…

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hand ringing a chime bowl

The First Parish Meditation Group Welcomes You

Please join us! We hold drop-in meditations on Mondays (gather at 6:00 pm and start at 6:15 pm at First Parish in the Damon Room) and on Sunday mornings (gather at 9:00 am, start at 9:10 am at the West Medford Community Center, 111…

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First Parish Music Programs

Click here for more 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…

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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…

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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…

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