The Alliance is the women’s organization in our church, with a mission to support the women in our church, and through that support to advance the interests and efforts of our entire church. Formal membership in The Alliance is open only to women, but Alliance activities are inclusive across gender and age: men attend meetings as guests and as speakers, and The Alliance is supportive of, and supported by, the youth and children of First Parish. The Alliance hosts several programs each year from October to May. Most programs are held on Friday evenings. For more information, contact or Click here for more information about our charitable 3-year Giving Plan.


Beatrice Meirowitz Shriver, a long-time active member in the Alliance passed away on January 13th after a short illness. Her family, John and Diane and Laura Shriver, will hold a memorial service at First Parish this Sunday afternoon at 2:00PM with a collation following the service. Alliance members are encouraged to come and participate in the collation, if you wish, in the set-up (beginning at 1:00PM) and take-down and the serving of catered refreshments. Her obituary is available in the Boston Globe. She will be greatly missed.

Alliance Programs & Gatherings

Click for Program Brochure updated for Spring 2020

Program Oct 18, 2019-Buddha in the Garden, book cover, by Cathie DesjardinsProgram Oct 18, 2019-photo of Cathie Desjardins

Writing a Garden CATHIE DESJARDINS Friday, October 18 Potluck dessert-7:00pm; program-7:30pm

In her new book of poems, Buddha in the Garden, Cathie Desjardins takes us on a seasonal swirl through all the life experiences to which gardens are a gateway. Cathie’s Alliance talk is about both the process of making a book and making a garden and includes selected readings and photos. Buddha in the Garden will be available for signing.


With planners and facilitators, Annette Sawyer and Louise Strayhorn, we will spend an evening in community exploring a positive vision for our “third act”. We will open a conversation about what we can move toward and explore in a place where we are our most creative. Come join us as we begin the first steps on a staircase of growth!

To prepare, come with your hopes and questions and please have watched Jane Fonda’s Ted Talk:

Bowl of chowder
Annual Chowder Supper Friday, January 10 Supper-6:30pm with potluck dessert

Welcome in the New Year with a warm tradition—a chowder supper! Several chowder­s, salad, and home-made cornbread and lots of stimulating conversation! Genevieve Baldwin, recipient of the youth summer seminary scholarship, shared her experiences in Colorado last summer with us. Also, our 3-year Giving Plan has been successful, but it is time for us to review for the future. We will begin the discussion now and vote on it at the Annual Meeting in May.

5 EASY WAYS TO DE-STRESS AT WORK AND AT HOME NANCY WEBBER Friday, March 20 Potluck dessert-7:00pm; program-7:30pm

Like it or not stress is part of our lives. While we cannot always control our circumstances, we can control how we respond. Nancy Webber has created an experiential program for De-Stressing. We will practice effective stress relievers including deep gentle stretches and breathing techniques. Our focus will be on releasing stress and tension throughout the body. All activities will be accessible to all and can be done standing or seated in a chair. The program will conclude with a seated Progressive Relaxation Response sequence inspired by Dr. Herbert Benson. These carefully curated relaxation exercises will leave you feeling calm and centered.

RECEPTION AFTER THE SERVICE please bring refreshments to share

If you’ve ever despaired at not being able to do it all, you’re not alone. None of us can do it all—it’s impossible. We, of unlimited thoughts and desires, live in a limited world of time and space (what a bummer!). This fundamental condition—our heads in the clouds and our feet on the ground—is our dilemma as two-leggeds. On Alliance Sunday we’ll explore how to hold this curious position with grace and power. Pam Kristan has led workshops at Rowe Conference Center, WomenExplore, and Rolling Ridge Conference Center based on her book, Awakening in Time —Practical Time Management for Those on a Spiritual Path. She attends First Church in Jamaica Plain UU, has moderated panels for National Take Back Your Time Day and has been featured in national broadcast/print media. Her mission is to bring more ease and effectiveness into people’s lives. (Info at


Our Annual Meeting begins with time to socialize over a Board-catered meal and then a program open to all of First Parish. The agenda will include a review of our annual report and a final appraisal of our Charitable Giving Plan. This evening our program speaker will be Joan Martin of the League of Women Voters, Arlington, MA. In this stormy, political climate leading to a pivotal election, Joan will discuss how the League got its start, how the League arrives at its positions on current issues, and why the League is still relevant today. Please join us with questions!