Special Services

Several times throughout the year, we hold special services to celebrate holidays and events that don't fall on Sundays. 

Tenebrae Service The Tenebrae service is celebrated the Thursday evening before Easter. Tenebrae means darkness, and at this service, we tell the story of the road to Easter: Jesus’ farewell at the table and the despair of his death, interspersed with Unitarian Universalist prayers and meditations about how we still struggle with darkness today. Engaging in this part of the story before the singing and hallelujahs of Easter deepens the meaning of Easter’s joy. We can’t always see it when we are in the middle of our sorrow, but, ready or not, life will assert itself, and the larger Spirit of Love, however we name or experience of this, will not abandon us, if we make room.

Longest Night ServiceThe Longest Night Service is celebrated on the evening of the winter solstace. This is a service that recognizes the poignancy of long, dark nights and invites us to take time for quiet reflection and healing.

Christmas Eve We have 2 traditional Christmas Eve Candle-Lighting Services. The first service is at 5 p.m., a family service where we listen to our Carol and Junior choirs sing, tell the Christmas story, and sing carols.
The second service is at 8:00 pm. and is a service of Lessons and Carols with performances by the Intermediate, Senior, and Bell choirs. The choir pieces are alternated with carols and the traditional Christmas readings, as well as modern reflections. Both services conclude with a candle lighting as we process outside into the night.

Contact Info

First Parish Church
2 Westford St
Chelmsford MA 01824

978-256-5133