Notes from the Standing Committee:

Dear All,

Here we are (already!) at the mid point of the church year. It seems a good time to reflect on how the year is going so far, and what's ahead for the rest of the year.

Surely the biggest thing for us as a community the first half of the year is the wrapping up of the ABP, (Accessible Building Project) including final installation and inspection of the elevator, as well as getting to a point where the nursery school that operates in the building is open and functioning again. Hooray!

Today, Sunday Jan 27, we just had an update to the congregation after church about the status of the APB. Tom Coffey and Dave Kaffine gave us an overview. There are a few loose ends, of course, but -- things are essentially complete, and most of the bills have been received. There was a lot of good feeling in the room as people contemplated the what and the how and the why of the successful completion of this amazing project.

Next up for the standing committee and the community is to pause, take a breath, and relax into our new space. Over the next year or so, we will be considering how to continue to live into our covenant, in particular, how to continue to grow our Accessibility and Openness.

But for now -- let's just pause and enjoy our newly configured space and reflect on how we together made this wonderful thing happen. Imagine, that now -- anyone can get into our building and up to share worship with us -- unimpeded! It's a beautiful thing.

Planning is underway for a day of celebration and dedication of the new space. Saturday MAY 4! Mark the day!

We can't end this update without an acknowledgement of the contributions of Carole Russell to this project, and to this church. Carole has stepped down from her service as Standing Committee chair to attend to her health. Carole, we thank you, we love you, and we will miss you on the committee. Take good care.

That's all for now. When you see us around church, please let us know what's on your mind and in your heart about First Parish.


Brenda Rogers Tom Coffey, Jim Curley, Gail Burati, Sandy Johnston, Neil Harmon, Elizabeth Valentine, and Edith Murphy

Church Council will meet 7pm Tuesday February 5th at the church. Please email your committee report to our mailing list a few days prior to meeting. Sandy Johnston, Chairperson.

Young Adults (18-35 years) Mini-Conference:  “Stages not Ages” brainstorming : YA’s 18-35? Sunday, February 10th from 12 to 1:30 in the chapel after the Ice Cream Social Hour.  We’ll be doing fun activities to figure out the future of YA’s, now.  Contact Caroline McMullin (YA Chair) or Dolores~ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The February Women's Discussion Group will be at 2 PM on Sunday, February 17th at Katherine Canada's home.  It will be Sunday afternoon at the movies, with popcorn and other movie theater treats. We will watch the "In the Bag" documentary about women and their handbags.  Please RSVP by Thursday, Feburary 14th to Katherine Canada.

 “Family and Friends Community CPR” will be held at the Chelmsford Public Library, 25 Boston Road, on Feb. 20 at 6:00pm. This course is for people who do not need a course completion card for a job or other requirements. Family & Friends CPR is ideal for community groups, parents grandparents, caregivers, schools, students, and others interested in learning how to save a life. REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED to ensure an adequate number of instructors. Please contact the Board of Health by February 8th if interested in attending.  Contact: Amanda Glaser, Health Educator. Tel: (978) 244-3328, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The 2019 Auction is coming! Mark your calendars for March 30th for an evening of laughter, bidding, and treasures galore! More information to follow soon. Questions?  Contact Jeanette Moreau or Theresa Popoloski .

Talent Show -  February 16th at 7pm!   It’s a Saturday night! Potluck, Talent and Fun!
For more information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Gratefully & Con Aprecio, Dolores GHeredia-Wood (DREFF&YP)
Please contact me if you like to volunteer: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Please visit the FPC Website for more information:

"Let's Be Honest: Communication in Families to Keep Kids Healthy" - Friday, January 25th, 6:30 to 9:00 pm - In this workshop, part of the curriculum is designed for parents & caregivers of children/youth of all ages. This two-hour session, led by trained facilitators, will identify and explore helpful resources for educating and supporting young people as they learn and grow. It offers thoughtful activities and open and supportive exchanges that enable parents to increase their comfort and confidence in their roles as primary sexuality educators of their child/children. Our learning objectives for this program are as follows:

Parents will be able to identify...

... outside influences related to sex/sexuality.
... "teachable moments" for talking with kids about sex/sexuality
... a message about sex/sexuality to share with their child(ren)

Cost: Free
Pizza & Refreshments!
Babysitting Available! Please let me know if babysitting is needed.

Dolores G Heredia-Wood
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 Women’s Discussion Group - On Tuesday evening, January 8 the we will meet at Ann Marie Sigdestad's home at 7:00 p.m. The traditional Norwegian desserts will be available as usual and hosting sign up for this coming year. Come and you'll have a surprise topic(s) for the evening. Please contact Ann Marie to let her know whether or not you are coming. All are welcome.

Book Discussion  - CFAM will be hosting a book discussion on January 12th on the book "Daring Democracy: Igniting Power, Meaning, and Connection for the America We Want" by Frances Moore Lappe and Adam Eichen. We will have food and drinks at 5pm with the discussion starting around 5:45 pm. There are copies of the book available to borrow.  Please see Caroline McMullin at coffee hour or through email.

The Split the Plate organization for January is City Year's City Year Camp. January 20th will be the Split the Plate Sunday. This organization was brought forth by Dan Wight. His description is as follows "This year I am working for City Year, an educational non profit that puts americorps members (like me) in classrooms to provide additional support for students, running small tutoring groups, assisting with classroom management and doing whatever else my school might need. We run a day camp for four days during February break to provide our students a safe place to learn, socialize, and play, instead of leaving them sitting at home with nothing to do other than rot their brains with Youtube and Fortnite".

ABP Wrap-up Meeting - The Standing Committee and ABP Team invites you to attend an ABP wrap-up meeting on January 27th at 11:30 am in the chapel.
There will be a summary presentation about the conclusion of the project including a financial update. We will engage the congregation in an evaluation about the project. Finally, we will discuss upcoming meetings planned with the congregation to discern what we focus on next after ABP. Hope you will join us on the 27th!

Bulletin Board Space  - We are in the process of determining where and how many bulletin boards will be installed in the first floor renovated space. If your committee needs space on a bulletin board please let Cindy Gist or Walter Cole know. Thank you!

Volunteers Needed For Social Hour - Please sign up to do social hour on the bulletin board in the vestry. You can choose to be responsible for set up, clean up, or both. Directions are on the bulletin board. Money is available to buy supplies if the expense is prohibitive. There is often coffee and juice in the kitchen. If you need training, help finding a buddy or two to do it with you, reimbursement for supplies, or have any questions, please contact Edith Murphy.

New UU (or not so new) UU Course - The membership committee is offering a course where we will discuss this church and Unitarian Universalism in general. The course will be based on a UU Tapestry of Faith curriculum but will also discuss the traditions of this parish. It will be highly interactive and there will be guest speakers.

Who would be interested in this class/discussion? People new to First Parish (who may or may not be new to UUism), people (members or non-members) who have been here a while but still have questions.

What is the time commitment? Approximately 7 hours.

  • Please let us know what your preference… no later than January 4th, 2019:
  • One seven-hour session 9 to 5pm (Saturday) Membership hosted luncheon 1/12, 1/19, 1/26, 2/2
  • Two three-hour sessions 9 to 1pm (Saturday) Snacks/Brown bag lunch option1/12, 1/19, 1/26, 2/2
  • One Hour for Six Weeks in the evenings from January to February: Mon; Wed; Thru; Fri
  • Let us know if there is any other day or time you would be able to attend?
  • Or if you need babysitting?

If you are interested, please fill out a form at membership social hour table or email your preferences to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  Alternatively, speak to: Chris Sweetnam, Rose Lerer, or Dolores GHeredia-Wood This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.