Podcast Book Club - The Welcoming Congregation Committee invites you to join us for a podcast "book" club! This year's topic is Current LGBTQIA+ Legal Struggles. Follow the link below to reach the list of podcasts to listen to. We'll meet at church on Saturday, February 15 7PM to discuss and share thoughts.

https://ransdella.wixsite.com/wccbookclub

Yummy refreshments will be served!  Please contact me if you have any questions or need clarification. Love and blessings, Abbie Ransdell (Welcoming Congregation Committee)


General Assembly is back in Rhode Island - GA 2020 will be held in Providence June 24 - June 28th, and we would love to have a big First Parish presence this year.

GA is the annual meeting of all UUA congregations. At GA there are workshops on all aspects of congregational life to allow UUs across the country to get learn form each other. There are also outside speakers that come to share their knowledge on with us. And of course, there are plenty of opportunity to take part in many different kinds of worship. The theme for this year, which coincides with the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower’s landing at Plymouth is “Rooted, Inspired, & Ready”, examining the role of our ancestors in the colonization of the US, and how we can work as a faith community as a whole to embrace values of justice and liberation.
GA is also where we vote on issues that affect us, as well as the UUA leadership. Each congregation is allotted a number of voting delegates based on the size of the congregation. First Parish has 4 delegates who will be able to vote in the General Sessions, but anyone can take part in the workshops and other events during GA.

Registration for housing at GA starts in March, so we would like to have a good estimate of how many are going then so we can reserve rooms. We do have money set aside to help defray the costs of GA. If you are interested in going to GA, or if you have questions, please contact Joan Coyne or Caroline Snow.


WOMEN'S DISCUSSION GROUP - The January group will meet at Ann Marie Sigdestad's home on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 12th at 2:00. (Please note day and time change from usual meeting time.) In addition to planning for this next year--come with ideas for dates you might be able to host--we will be discussing an ethnic Holiday tradition of yours or another ethnic group you chose.  Everyone is welcome and please let Ann Marie know whether or not you are able to attend.


Saturday Feb 1st 1PM Bandages for Ghana II - We had way too many bedsheets to finish making bandages with in November, so we will be doing this again. Join us for a few hours of chatting and snacks while we cut and wrap the bedsheets into bandages. (no more sheets are needed though!) Sheila Morehouse, a member of the Meetinghouse Ringers and a pediatrician in Chelmsford, will be heading to the Baptist Medical Centre in Nalerigu, Ghana (https://baptistmedicalcenter.org/) in May with our bandages. If you have any questions, please contact Joan Coyne.


NEW WESTFORD STREET CLOSURE - The town of Chelmsford has decided to close up the end of Westford Street as it enters Chelmsford Center. This means that as of January 2 we have to go back down Academy to the light, to access rt 4. So, if you park along the town common – circle through our parking lot and aim back towards Academy before you park. THIS IS A GOOD THING! No more speeding maniacs as we try to cross the street. But it does come with nuisance value for those who would aim through the center to get home from here. Just realize that the rush hour traffic through here is horrendous M-F as everyone heads towards the bottleneck and the hope is that removing one more thread and changing light cycles, will help. This is a 6-9 month trial before it is set in stone.


HS Youth Led Mission Service Trip! Thank you First Parish UU of Chelmsford!  The High School Youth are very excited about the upcoming Youth Led Mission Service trip to Puerto Rico in February 2020! Our mission is to “Allow the world to change us, so we can be the good in the world…/Dejando que el mundo nos cambie, para que nosotros podamos ser el bien en el mundo…”

Five of our youth accompanied by Emma Warila and Dolores~, LFFDirector, on behalf of FPC, will be volunteering for the Plow to Plate; World Central Kitchen organization in their effort to support small farmers, especially after the after mass of hurricane Maria whose aftermath they are still experiencing!
WE are planning Two Fund Raisers in the coming months:

January 11th, 4pm - Please join us for this enchanting concert of Chamber Music which our youth will be participating in! This fundraiser is part of the Steve Zocchi Concert Series and he and other performers have generously offered the proceeds to benefit the HS Mission-Service Trip to Puerto Rico. Thank you Maestro! Come enjoy the music and the opportunity to support our youth to learn the value and joy of helping others.

February 8th, Please Save the date and plan to join us for a fundraiser Spaghetti Dinner. More information to come soon…

For more information please contact Dolores~ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Thank YoUU FPC!


An Entertaining Afternoon of Chamber Music

Saturday, January 11th, 2020 at 4:00pm
Presented by “El Maestro” Steve Zocchi, FPC Music Director,
First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church of Chelmsford

Proceeds benefit FPC Youth-Led High School Mission Service Trip for World Central Kitchen; Plow to Plate Organization in February 2020

Music of Bach, Telemann, Schubert and much more …

Performers:
Henry and Janice Tervo, Jessica Volk, Carsten Kowalczyk, David Siegel, Angela Tseng
“El Maestro” Steve Zocchi
Special guest: Kevin Snow, Marissa Burati, Nina Wolf representing youth led Mission-Service Trip Participants

Suggested donation $15 adults; $12 seniors; $8 children 12 and under
(snow date January 25th)

ONE HOUR CHOIR! - Do you love to sing but don’t have time to commit to regular rehearsals?  If so, join The Choir at Church for “One Hour Choir” on December 1st. Just show up at 8:30am on Sunday morning, December 1st for a one hour rehearsal and then experience the joy of singing in the morning service. It will be fun, I promise. Thanks, Steve


 Request for Greeters - Being a greeter is a simple fulfilling way to volunteer for our wonderful FPC community! As a greeter you get to meet, greet and “WELCOME!” all the wonderful people that come through our FPC doors! We are using SignUp.com.

Here's how it works in 3 easy steps:

1) Click this link to see our SignUp on SignUp.com: https://signup.com/go/jMSRNUm
2) Review the options listed and choose the spot(s) you like.
3) Sign up! It's Easy - you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on SignUp.com.

Note: SignUp.com does not share your email address with anyone. If you prefer not to use your email address, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we can sign you up manually.  For more information or questions you can also contact Sarah Manning, or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., LFF Director, Dolores~ on behalf of the Membership Committee


Information about Proposed Outdoor Play Area - SC is considering providing the Little Acorn nursery school with an outdoor play area. The Play Area Task Force will have a table at social hour on Sunday December 8th. They will show the proposed location and the type of fencing being considered. Visit to learn more and ask questions.


Pastoral Care News - The Pastoral Care Team would like to remind folks that we have a table set up at social hour where you can write cards to fellow church members who are going through difficult times or just to tell someone you miss at church that you are thinking of them. It is especially important during the holidays that we hold each other with love and support since so many deal with grief and stress. We are also available at the table and elsewhere to chat if you feel like you need an ear.

We are also asking for donations of gift cards to local supermarkets since this is an expensive time of year for people who might be already facing some financial constraints. General gift cards are welcome as well (Visa, MasterCard, etc.) for those who need to cover other expenses. You can give those to either the Pastoral Care Team or directly to Rev. Ellen.

Thank you as always for being there for each other in good times and in bad. We couldn't do this work without all of you.


Songs of Strength & Solace – How have these last few years been for you …?!  Feeling recurrent bouts of hyperactive anxiety, outrage, burnout or dread …? US, TOO …!!! So, we’re bringing out the old guitar and our homemade songbooks for you again and getting ready for another darkness-busting singalong …!! On Saturday, December 21st ~ Winter Solstice ~ we’re going to welcome Light back with all our hearts …! As in the past, we will be singing folk songs and hymns, spirituals and camp songs, songs of the people in good times and bad. Also as in the past, it will be fortifying and fun …!! We will meet in the chapel from 11:00 a.m. to noon. If you have any questions, please contact Virginia Adams  - Virginia Adams & Diane Johns


Calling all prayer shawls!! We are desperately short on prayer shawls and our need for them is great as always. If you have some ready to go, please give them to either Rev. Ellen or Kathy Deschenes.  Thank you!!


HEALING CONVERSATIONS -  In keeping with the commitment in our First Parish covenant to care and be present to one another in our joys and sorrows, Rev. Ellen and the Pastoral Care Team offer this grief and loss group on the second and fourth Mondays of the month to nurture and hold a sacred space to share stories, experiences, and emotions around love, loss and grief in a spirit of mutual care and deep listening. This is an ongoing group that folks in our First Parish community can join during the year, while maintaining it as a confidential and supportive space. We meet from 7 pm to 8:30 pm, upstairs in the High School room. Our next meeting will be Monday, November 25th. As we are in the midst of the holidays, we invite you to bring a recipe or item that represents a tradition that has been impacted by loss and grief. For our December 9th meeting, we will offer a healing ritual. If you have any questions or wish to attend, please contact Rev. Ellen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Christmas Day Dinner – Looking for host/ess(s) for our traditional Christmas Day potluck dinner held in our vestry on December 25, mid to late afternoon. Usually -but not necessarily - the person in charge cooks a turkey (or something of that size-monetary aid available for that) either here or at home and everyone else brings whatever they consider necessary for Christmas dinner. It is a way for those who would otherwise be alone or simply missing a big holiday dinner crowd, to celebrate the season with friends. Most years at least 10-20 people show up. This requires minimal organization and with so much help, set up and clean up is a breeze. Please talk to me at Social Hour or email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. If you are interested in leading this event this year.  Thanks - Cindy Gist