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Minister’s Blog

The View From Here – October 7th, 2022

Greetings Church Family! I pray that you and yours are well these days, and that you have what you need. I am currently in Maine attending a retreat at the Alcyon Center called Silence, Heart, and Earth. Here we are learning about soul practices that bring us to open-hearted presence with each other, and the world. Out of these, we hope to cultivate the courage to face life with a new soulful stance. I am grateful to be able to take time for retreats such as this. I look forward to bringing...

Why an Installation?

A reflection from your minister about Installation Sunday on September 25th Over these past many weeks, I am sure many of you have asked the question, just what is an installation anyways?   Typically, an Installation Service takes place within the first year or so of a settlement between a minister and the congregation to which they are called. I was called as your 30th settled minister in May 2021, and my time at First Parish formally began in August of the same year. And now the big day is...

The View From Here – September 2nd, 2022

Greetings Church Family! I pray that you and yours are well and have what you need these days. The start of the church year is upon us, and I feel a holy thrum beginning to reverberate in these walls. Maybe it’s my own excitement, but I sense these walls also await your arrival with anticipation and joy! This newsletter is a full one. Please take the time to read each section as they all contain important information, updates and asks that your staff and lay leaders have worked hard to...

Musically Speaking – June 10th, 2022

Before going to sleep at night, Guy and I trade off reading aloud.  We choose our book carefully, as we don’t want some of the harsh realities of our lives to be our last thoughts before sleep.  Right now, we are reading Redwall by Brian Jacques.   It is about a community of mice who are under attack by an evil and tyranical rat and his gang.  There is a particular mouse whose character is developing into a hero/warrior to ultimately save the day for the mice.  His name is Matthias. Matthias...

From Your Minister – June 3rd, 2022

Greetings Church Family! I pray that you and yours are well these days. June’s theme is Celebrating Blessings and a good one to end our church year with. Natural endings invite us to both count them and prepare for them. Right now, we are holding several transitions that deserve blessing: we are closing out our first year together; we are readying ourselves to say farewell to our Director of Religious Education, Lauren Strauss; our committee work is quieting for the summer; and after worship...

From Your Minister – May 6th, 2022

Dearest Church Family, Activist Angela Y. Davis once said, “It is in collectivities that we find reservoirs of hope and optimism.” Amid the latest news coming out of Washington DC around abortion rights*, we need reminders such as these more than ever. I certainly do. And so, amid the uneasiness of these difficult days, my message is simply to take heart. Do not spend your spirit dry in hopelessness or despair. For in this church, our lanterns are lit, our souls are intact, and we side with a...

From Your Minister – April 1st, 2021

Greetings Church Family!   I pray all of you and yours are well and have what you need these days.   Despite the cold snap earlier this week, I feel spring thrumming all around. The parsonage is home to a beautiful lilac tree and its green leaves are unfurling more and more every day. Olive, Poppy, and I have our bets on what color these Marshall Street lilacs might be and are genuinely enjoying the daily suspense.   Given the state of the world, this might seem terribly trite. For what could...

From Your Minister – February 4th, 2022

I was deeply saddened to hear of Thich Nhat Hanh’s passing on January 22nd. For those of you who don’t know him, Thich Nhat Hanh was a Vietnamese Zen Buddhist Master–a monk, peace activist, author of over 100 books, poet, teacher and founder of the well-visited Plum Village, a monastic community of engaged Buddhism in France. I have always dreamed of going there. Back in the early 2000’s I found my way to Thich Nhat Hanh’s writings, and they had a profound impact on me. He had a way of...

From Your Minister – January 7th, 2022

Greetings Church Family!   I pray that each of you are well and have what you need these days.   These past weeks have felt like a fast-moving flood, haven’t they? We find ourselves, once again, doing our best to make quick decisions and adjustments in all areas of life. Cancelled plans, delayed school starts, empty restaurants, and a return to virtual church is eerily familiar and not the direction we all thought we were heading. More questions than answers abound and, if you are like me,...

From Your Minister – December 3rd, 2021

Greetings to you this December!   I pray that you and yours are well and that you have what you need.   We have entered what many faith traditions call the season of light, which is a time to consider the longer stretches of night as an invitation towards restorative, introspective waiting. This can be challenging amid all the holiday bustle and yet now, more than ever, we need to make time to still ourselves in the midst of it all. I hope you will join us for worship on Sunday where I plan to...

“In the Interim”
A column by our interim minister Reverend Wendy Bell (2019-2021).

“Captain’s Log”
Archived posts by our retired minister, Reverend Mark Harris.

October 2022