First Parish Potluck Saturday, September 7th, 6 - 8pm Welcome! The Membership Committee & “RE” Faith Formation Council … and friends ask you, your family and friends to please join us! Just come on over and bring your favorite foods to share! We will be providing dishes, utensils, cups and drinks.
Clean-up volunteers are welcome too.  Allergies are everyone’s responsibility! Please remember to be aware and label and read food ingredients. If you have any questions or want to volunteer, please contact:  Dolores~ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Guide Dog Retirement - After more than seven years of loyal and loving service, my guide Dog Fave is nearing retirement. That means I am actively searching for Fave’s perfect forever home. If you would like to talk to me about the possibility of welcoming Fave into your life, please feel free to give me a call. Thank you.- Suzanne Wilson


Small Group Ministries – a great way to start the church year:  .A Small Group consists of 6-10 people that meet once a month either during the day or in the evening for about 2 hours to discuss a variety of topics related to living our lives within the context of a Unitarian Universalist community. An experienced facilitator leads the group through a structured discussion. It’s a great way to connect to others. If you’re interested, please contact Carlene Merrill.


HEALING CONVERSATIONS: Once again, Rev. Ellen and the Pastoral Care Team will be offering our grief support group: “Healing Conversations." The purpose of the group is to create a sacred space to share stories, experiences and emotions around love, loss and grief in a spirit of mutual care and deep listening. Loss can take many different forms and people have participated in “Healing Conversations” for deaths recent and long ago and for other types of losses including divorce, estrangement, and illness. We use readings, ritual, meditation/prayer, video clips, journaling and small group discussion to reflect for ourselves and accompany each other across grief's difficult and unpredictable emotional and spiritual terrain. Based on feedback we received, we are offering “Healing Conversations” as an ongoing group that people can join as needed during the year while maintaining it as a confidential and supportive space. The group will meet on the second and fourth Mondays of the month, beginning September 23rd, from 7 pm to 8:30 pm upstairs in the High School Room. If you have 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. or 978 256-5555.


Website Updates - I will be updating the website over the next couple of weeks. I have already begun updating the content, but the organization and look of the website will be changing (hopefully by our first service). Please be on the lookout for broken links, spelling/grammar mistakes, or outdated content. If you find any, please email the website team at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. so we can fix it. If you are a member of a committee, it would be very helpful for us if you would take a look at any pages that have to do with your committee and check to see if they are up to date. I am not always aware of changes that happen, so letting me know what is wrong, and what the correct content should be very helpful. Thanks! Joan Coyne


Calling for Community Table Volunteers - Community Table needs your help! To continue, we need additional volunteers to form a larger pool of participants from which to draw each month. For the past several months, we've been struggling to ensure that there were enough volunteers lined up to complete the necessary tasks. The rewards for joining us? Camaraderie, fulfilling work, gratitude of the people served, and community service hours!

What is Community Table? First Parish prepares and serves a meal on the 3rd Saturday of each month. For 25+ years, we have been one of 8 churches and organizations who take turns to feed 50-75 people each Saturday and Sunday throughout the year. This is a separate group from Table of Plenty, which First Parish also supports. A monthly commitment is not required. The time needed from each month's volunteers depends on the task, as follows:
• shopping - Friday - (1 person) (2-3 hours)
• preparing at First Parish- Sat 9 to 11 am (8 people) (1-2 hours each, partial shifts available)
• pick up desserts at Stop & Shop - Sat morning (1 person) (1 hour)
• serving/cleanup at Salvation Army - Sat noon to 2:15 pm (7 people) (2 1/4 hours each; partial shifts available)
• bring leftovers to Lowell transition center - (1 person) (half hour)

Remaining serving dates for 2019: 9/21, 10/19, 11/16, 12/14

For some time now, the meals have been served at the Salvation Army in Lowell. Not the ideal location, given the organization's history of intolerance with regard to some people. In fact, when Community Table's location was moved because the YMCA could no longer accommodate the meals, people met with the Salvation Army and expressed concern about both proselytizing at meals and the group's history of intolerance. We were assured that our concerns were understood and there have been no problems along those lines. Those who continued to serve with Community Table made the decision that feeding hungry people is the priority and that using the venue that facilitates that does not mean we endorse the views of the organization. We also expected it would provide some necessary interaction between groups with differing views that might do some good. If the opportunity to feed hungry people calls to you, we hope you will join us.

If you would like more information, have thoughts to share, or would like to be added to our volunteer distribution list, please contact Michelle Hillman.

Signups for 2019 dates are here:
https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70a0b49a4a62ca2f94-community


 WELCOMING WEEK – SOLIDARITY LOWELL - Cultural Exchange Potluck Picnic, South Common, September 15, 2-5pm.  Please bring a dish to share from your home country.  Rain Location: Eliot Presbyterian Church, 273 Summer Street, Lowell * FREE FOOD * Activities for children * Entertainment from many different cultures.  For more information:  http://facebook.com/solidaritylowell


REMINDER TO ALL COMMITTEES/GROUPS: RESERVE YOUR MEETING SPACE AT CHURCH ASAP PLEASE. Several of you have already contacted us, and THANK YOU! Everyone else …. Please contact Jess Volk (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) AND the office (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) (still getting the sexton email address routed correctly) … with your requests. Thanks!

Rev Ellen Summer Contact Information - During the summer, I have four weeks of study leave to prepare for next year’s preaching and faith formation courses that I hope to lead (that is the theory anyway). I will also be on vacation July 21 through August 12. While I am not leading worship during the summer, I am around for pastoral care, committee and group meetings, and general minister things, except during my vacation time. While I don’t keep regular office hours, I do try to check my office voice mail: 978 256-5555, so you can leave me a message or, if you need to reach me urgently, my cell phone number is on the message, as well as emergency contact information for when I am away. You can also email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We will resume our regular worship schedule on Sunday, September 8 at 10 am in the sanctuary for our water communion. More to come on that in August! --Rev. Ellen


 Summer Church Office Hours July 1 – August 23 - I am on reduced (10 hrs/wk) work hours during this time. Please call (978 256-5133) or email the office (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) if you wish to see me at a specific time, about church business.  I will consistently be in on Mondays and Thursdays 6 am to 8 am unless I’m on vacation. Other days I may work around Ellen’s schedule, other appointments - or be here very early to simply deal with phone messages and physical mail. I live nearby and have no problem with meeting you here at your convenience Monday through Friday before noontime. Wherever I am, I will check email off and on during that time frame. - Cindy Gist


First Parish will be selling our famous donuts at the 4th of July Pre-Celebration on the town Common from 5-9 PM on Wednesday, July 3rd and 7 AM to 11:30 on July 4th. Please come by and buy a donut or 2 or 1/2 dozen to help support this important fundraiser.  Thank you.


 Community Table needs your help! We prepare and serve a meal on the 3rd Saturday of each month, including summer months. Come have some fun for a few short hours while providing a worthwhile service that is very appreciated by the community. No experience necessary! If you'd like to know more, or want be added to our mailing list, please contact Michelle Hillman. Signups for 2019 dates are here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70a0b49a4a62ca2f94-community


Fall Potluck - Save the date - Saturday, September 7th.  See you in September FPC Fall Potluck, hosted by Lifespan “RE” Faith Formation and Membership.  Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Director of Lifespan Faith Formation - Dolores


Lifespan Faith Formation - Looking forward… We are so excited about offering two great courses in 2019-2020 as part of Lifespan Faith Formation.  A favorite is returning, Geography of Grace and a new course, The Soul of Aging.  Rev. Ellen is very enthusiastic about offering these courses. The Geography of Grace uses imagery from the natural world to explore our own experiences of spirituality and meaning. The Soul of Aging offers an opportunity to examine the spiritual learnings of one’s life and of one’s aging. Both courses, from the Center for Courage and Renewal, use the Circle of Trust model, developed by Parker Palmer and based on Quaker practices, to build supportive community around deep soul work.  During the month of September we will have Informative Orientations for both courses on a Sunday (exact date tbd)

From October to June -

Geography of Grace, will be the 2nd and 4th Sunday of the Month from 2:30 to 5 pm (with the exception of holidays)

Soul of Aging, will be the First Sunday of the month from 12 to 2:30 pm (with the exception of holidays). For the Soul of Aging course there will be an extra optional gathering for participants the first Saturday of the month 10 to 12.

These courses are part of FPC Lifespan Faith Formation; For more information or to let us know you are interested please contact Dolores~ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Young Adults Group - All Stages…Ages 18-35; Connect, renew and network…
Meetings Every First Sunday of Every month - begin Upstairs in HS Room: Summer too! July 7and August 4th
Connect, renew and network.

For more info, contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Director of Lifespan Faith Formation / Dolores~ on behalf of UU YA’s and Lifespan Faith Formation


Opening for Building and Events Coordinator, First Parish UU Church, Chelmsford, MA The Building and Events Coordinator (BEC) is responsible for the basic functions of the church physical plant. Responsibilities include maintaining the church calendar of events and facilitating the setup and cleanup before and after as well as hospitality during events. The BEC will be responsible for general building maintenance including thermostat settings, trash, and providing access to renters and repair services. The BEC works closely with the Church Administrator and Building Maintenance Committee Chair. The BEC will be supervised by the minister, and will attend staff meetings as needed. The maximum amount of time per week is set at 4 hours. Please respond to jThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.