Four people with taper candles light chalice framed by two rings

Musically Speaking – January 2024

Jan 5, 2024

Man with glasses and woman stand smiling in front of windowMy view from the chancel on Christmas eve, at both evening services, was a sea of faces. So many people attended church that evening! Coming to OUR church for all the reasons one comes to church: to be uplifted, to be renewed, to be transformed, to be in community, to love knowing that this is where you belong, and to feel love returned. All this speaks to our theme for January, Liberating Love.

For an example of Liberating Love in action, let me describe the First Parish choir. Singers selflessly come to rehearsals each week, on a dark, sometimes cold, Thursday evening. We warm up our bodies and voices and learn some music together. We work on not just melodies, but harmonies and descants and bass lines. We practice compelling rhythms that hold it all together. Sometimes we sing in other languages.  And, we feel a bond with each other because what binds us together is love. And we love to share our music with you. This love liberates us because it changes us to be something special that we could not be without each other. It sets us free to be our best selves.

Thank you, choir singers, for sharing your voices at one or both services on Christmas eve!

Want to join the choir? Talk to Charlyn at church or contact me at We would love to include YOUR voice with ours.

Music in January/February:
January 14th: There will be some special music at the MLK service that day.
January 23rd: Vespers will include Izzy Tappan deFrees, horn, Nick Woebcke, piano.
February 4th is Music Sunday, and there will be much music to celebrate.

Charlyn Bethell
Music Director | + posts

Charlyn’s professional training has followed two paths: as a professional oboist and as a music teacher and conductor. As Music Director at First Parish, she joins these two paths of her musical life, conducting the choir, coordinating guest musicians, and performing on oboe.

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