The Unitarian – May 31, 2016

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Sunday Worship — June 5

Our Justice Sunday guest speaker is Rev. Dr. William Schulz. Bill was President of the Unitarian Universalist Association from 1985 – 1993 and Executive Director of Amnesty International USA from 1994 – 2006. On June 30, he will retire and complete six years as President and CEO of the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee.

Rev. Dr. William Schulz

Welcome and Announcements: 9 a.m. Betsy George; 11 a.m. Deveaux Duckworth

9 a.m. Ushers: Ana Hammock & Ann Dexter
11 a.m. Ushers: Margaret Marks & Leslie Kolterman

Lay Pastoral Care: 9 a.m. Bethany Allen; 11 a.m. James Hencke

The flowers on the Chancel Table this Sunday are given by Linda Rice and Emma Jones in loving memory of their husband and father, Douglas Jones.

  • Services at 9 & 11 a.m.; childcare is provided.
  • Sermon archive
  • Sunday, June 12: Flower Communion — Rev. David Bryce, followed by the all-church picnic

Bring a Flower on June 12

June 12 is our Flower Communion Sunday. Each person is asked to bring a flower to leave behind, and each will leave with a different flower. If you can, please bring an extra flower or twelve for those who will forget!

Reflections from Rev. David Bryce, Senior MinisterRev. David Bryce

“Those who really study religion, cultivate their spiritual nature, preserve their souls, gather up their spiritual force, and watch their hearts. They believe that if the spiritual nature be not nurtured, it daily dwindles; if the soul be not preserved, it daily dies; if the spiritual force be not exercised, it is dissipated daily; if the heart be not watched, it is daily lost.” Attributed to Zhang Yuanxu, 1862 – 1924, the 62nd Celestial master of Taoism.
     One wise lesson of many religious traditions is that one should practice one’s religion every day. Just as physical exercise strengthens the body so spiritual exercise strengthens the soul. So one builds up spiritual strength through regular use of spiritual things.
     So why do Unitarian Universalists take the summer off?
     The answer to that question is that we do not. There are services all summer long here at The First Church in Belmont.
     It is true, however, that there was a long tradition of UU Congregations closing their doors for the months of July and August. (Actually, back in the 1800’s the Unitarian Church in Yonkers, NY was open all summer long, but would close for the month of January; I assume this was not their practice alone.)
     There were various excuses for this practice. In the Boston area it was said, “God goes to Maine in the summer”. (There were several variants of that: God goes to the Cape, God goes to the shore.)
     Another was that we Unitarian Universalists have to shut down “in order to give the Devil a chance to catch up”.
     There was also a class element to this. In the 1800’s cities were places of heat, dust and sometimes illness. The upper classes (many of them were Unitarians, and most Unitarians were among the upper classes) therefore fled the cities and spent their summers elsewhere. So I surmise that during the summer many of our congregations had no congregation.
     But spiritual growth happens in many ways, and can happen anytime and anyplace.
     During the summer season to come, in vacation times or quiet afternoons, may we remember to build our spirits, to strengthen our souls, to take pleasure in and give thanks for all that is.

Annual Report Update

FCBGreen’s annual report was inadvertently omitted from the full annual report of the church. To see the work of this initiative committee for 2015-16, please click here to find the report:

FCB’s 37th Annual Chamber Music Concert, June 5

Music for a good cause is the occasion on Sunday, June 5th at 8:00 p.m. at The First Church in Belmont Unitarian Universalist, as area artists present the 37th Annual Chamber Music Concert.
     Admittance is by donation and all proceeds will benefit the Pediatric SPARK (Supporting Parents and Resilient Kids) program at the Boston Medical Center. This program helps Boston’s highest risk children (5 and under) whose lives are affected by significant medical, emotional and behavioral challenges.
     A very special program is planned, as once again The First Church celebrates the handsome harpsichord, built and given to the church in 1979 by Harrison Radford, a gift which marked the origin of the annual event.
     The June 5th program will feature vocal and instrumental music by a very accomplished and talented group of performers. Highlighting the program will be:

  • a stirring Hummel concerto for trumpet, performed by Ned Searls
  • a melodic Marcello oboe concerto performed by Luke Gallagher on oboe, and Dylan Sauerwald on harpsichord
  • a stunning Dvorak trio featuring Boston Ballet Orchestra’s and Waltham Philharmonic Orchestra’s Ken Stalberg on violin, performer and composer Steve Laven, on cello, and choir director and theory teacher, Shaylor Lindsay on piano.
  • a special Mozart sonata for four hands performed by First Church’s own Director of Music, Ian Garvie, and Assistant Director of Music, Dylan Sauerwald.
  • beautiful vocal performances from Camila Parias, soprano, of the Boston Camerata, Handel and Haydn Society, and La Donna Musicale among others, and by Clare McNamara, mezzo-soprano, of the Handel and Haydn Society, the Lorelei Ensemble, and the Apollo Master Chorale, among others.

A dessert reception will follow the concert. For more information, 617-484-1054, ext. 201.

Mark your calendar for the All Church Picnic:
Sunday, June 12

Mark your calendar and plan to attend the annual All-Church Picnic immediately following the 11:00 service on Sunday, June 12. There will be delicious food including burgers, chicken, hot dogs and vegetarian options, lots of yummy salads, and of course, dessert. The cost is $5.00 per person, $20 max per family. Children 3 and under are free.

Salad Contest
Don’t miss the annual First Church Salad Contest! Bring your favorite salad to share at the picnic – green salads, pasta salads, fruit salads; all types are welcome. Please bring your salad to the kitchen the day of the picnic and enter your name on the list to be part of the contest. Then at the picnic everyone will vote for their favorite. We serve over 200 people at the picnic, so the more salads, the better!

We will have a sign-up sheet at coffee hour listing different opportunities for people to help with this fun annual event — volunteers needed to help run games for kids, grill, sell tickets, set-up, clean-up, shop, etc. If you have any questions, or would like to help out, please e-mail or call Melissa Irion at or 617-571-9391.

Children’s Religious Education: It Takes a Congregation

Thank you for all of the heart-felt congratulations expressed over the last week. I am delighted with the new adventures on my horizon. Having spent two years with you here at First Church in Belmont working as the Acting Director of CRE, I feel well prepared to serve the UU Church of Tallahassee as their Interim Minister for the next 1-2 years. Their congregation will be making a transition from a long-tenured minister to calling their next settled minister under my guidance, but they approach it with strong programs in place, including the life-span religious education program, and great appreciation for all of their staff.
     In some ways, I’ll be in fairly familiar territory because First Church also has strong programs in place and shows their appreciation for staff regularly. Although my title has been “Acting Director”, I have really been doing the work of an interim religious educator, assessing the CRE program while assuring that it has continued to run smoothly. I have been preparing the way for your next settled CRE director. From the feedback I have received from many of you, I am leaving the program well situated for the arrival of new leadership in CRE.
     Although the hiring process hasn’t been completed at the time of this writing, I am confident that FCB will have an excellent CRE director in place when the 2016-17 church year begins.
     Regardless of who is hired, however, the congregation and its programs are owned by the members. It is up to all of you to make sure that they are the best they can be. That means registering your children for CRE, volunteering to teach, serve on the CRE committee or helping with special events that help include families in congregational life. It also means making regular church attendance a family priority and contributing financially so that the church can sustain all of what you love so much about this community. We’ll say our goodbyes at the annual picnic, but until then…
     Yours in faith,

~ Charlotte Lehmann, Acting Director of Children’s Religious Education
Office hours: Tues-Weds, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. E-mail:

Remaining CRE programs

  • June 5th, final Community Sunday and Children’s Chapel for Grades 1-6. Final collection of the children’s offering will be included in their donation to the New England Greyhound Rescue. Children will be cleaning the classrooms and getting them ready for summer and next fall. Building Bridges (Grade 7) wrap-up, Spirit Play (pre-K/K) and Nursery meet as usual.
  • June 12th, Flower Communion, multigenerational worship services at 9 am and 11 am. If your family would like to light the chalice or help with ushering, please contact the CRE Office ( The annual end-of-year fellowship picnic follows at 12:30 pm. Food and fun for all!

Children’s Religious Education Program Registration and Information:

  • Consider registering your children for CRE early for 2016-17 using the registration link found on the Children’s Religious Education page of the FCB website ( which allows you to register children from birth through 12 thgrade. All children must be registered for CRE.

Sandy Island Registration is Open!
12th Annual Sandy Island Retreat, September 16-18, 2016

The boathouse at Sandy Island.

The boathouse at Sandy Island.

The Fellowship Committee would like to invite you to join us for the popular First Church Sandy Island Retreat. This is a wonderful opportunity to kick back, relax, and meet new and old friends after a long summer. Sandy Island offers recreational opportunities for people of all interests and ages.
     Information and the registration link are online:
     Questions? Contact Ariane Frank and Martin Plass at

Aging in Community — a Community Conversation

Since so many members of the congregation attended our many programs concerning of end-of-life issues, I thought you might be interested in attending this program. For more information contact Lillian at

“Senior Cohousing: Taking Charge of the Rest of your Life”
June 5, 2-4:30 p.m., Watertown Free Public Library, 123 Main St., Watertown

Senior cohousing is an innovative model for housing seniors that started in Denmark and is now taking off in the USA. Cohousing enables seniors to take control of the inevitable and live as independently as possible, as long as possible, within a community of peers. It’s an entirely new way to house ourselves as we age—with dignity, independence, safety, mutual concern, and fun. Register at

RCurzi2016An Evening with Richard Curzi & Positive Energy featuring the Belmont Roxx Orchestra

Mark your calendars for Friday, June 10 @ 7:30 when the final Second Friday Coffeehouse of the season will feature An Evening with Richard Curzi & Positive Energy featuring the Belmont Roxx Orchestra. Admission is $10 ($5 for students and seniors). Featured beneficiaries are UU Urban Ministries and Grow Clinic at Boston Medical Center.

Purchase next year’s Coffeehouse Season Ticket NOW and save 20%

After two decades at the same rates, we are raising our price at the door and the price of our (two-people for the price of one) Season Tickets by 20%. This is still lower than comparable venues but closer to the norm.
     As a gesture of gratitude to our loyal supporters, and in an attempt to shorten our fall Season Ticket sales season, we are offering 2016-2017 Season Tickets to early bird purchasers at 2015-2016 rates from now until midnight August 31st.
     Buy next season’s ticket at the June 10th Coffeehouses and by mail from now until the end of August. Don’t miss out on this great bargain on great music and your chance to support ten great beneficiaries!

Belmont UU Alliance Announces Fall Programming

The Belmont UU Alliance (for men and women) announces its exciting fall programming. All of these activities are preceded by lunch and socializing at the church unless otherwise stated. Stay tuned for all the details in future Unitarians and Adult RE listings:

Fall 2016

  • September 21: Concord River Boat Cruise with Lunch
  • October 19: The Tufts Art Gallery with Interactive Guide
  • November16: Documentary: Merchants of Doubt
  • December14: Drawing from the Right Side of the Brain for Artists and Non-Artists
  • Winter/Spring Programming 2017: To Be Announced

Belmont Resident 2016 Gun Buyback Event: Safer Homes, Safer Community

No Questions Asked/No Id Required

  • Saturday, June 11, 2016, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Exchange unwanted firearms for grocery store gift cards
  • Drop-off location will be at the Belmont DPW Yard, 37 C Street

The Belmont Gun Buyback is sponsored by the Belmont Police Department, the Belmont Religious Council, the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office and Belmont houses of worship.[1] It provides a safe, no questions asked, no ID required, way for Belmont residents to dispose of unwanted firearms (working or non-working) and ammunition.
     Guns turned in at the event must be unloaded with safety engaged and must be contained in a bag, box, or case prior to transporting them for drop-off. Amnesty will be extended for gun law violations (involving transport of firearms) for Belmont residents traveling to the event location, the DPW Yard, 37 C St., on Saturday, June 11, 2016, from 10 a.m.
     In addition to peace of mind, participants will receive gift cards to local grocery stores when they drop off their unwanted firearms. Grocery gift cards will be in the following amounts:

  • Ice Cream Coupons for toy guns
  • $25.00 for BB or Pellet Gun or Inoperable Firearm
  • $50.00 for Revolver, Semi-Automatic, Shotgun, or Rifle
  • $100.00 for Assault Weapon

     The Belmont Police Department and Middlesex Sheriff’s Office will provide on-duty officers at the event to receive weapons for safe storage, followed by destruction in accordance with state law.
     The BPD has set up the following special phone line to receive questions and/or requests for assistance in safely transporting firearms: 617-993-2529.
     This year’s gun buyback is part of a five-town coordinated regional initiative. Arlington, Watertown, Cambridge and Somerville are also holding gun buyback events in June as part of the Safer Homes, Safer Community initiative.

[1] Beth-El Temple, First Church of Belmont, UU, Plymouth Congregational Church, UCC, Belmont-Watertown United Methodist Church, All Saints’ Episcopal Church, Belmont, and New Roads Catholic Community.

Adult Programs News

First Church Programming for Young Adults
Thursday, June 9, 7:30 p.m., Conference Room
There will be a discussion to explore the possibilities of creating programming for young adults (18-35) on Thursday, June 9th at 7:30 p.m. in the Conference Room. If you are interested in being part of this discussion but can’t attend the meeting contact Lillian at

New Group Forming in the fall — “Next Chapter”
Are you thinking about retirement, about to retire, are retired, or considering (or in) retirement? The Next Chapter support/discussion group will consider major emotional, social, and spiritual issues for those of us who are either considering or are in that major transition. We will explore our hopes, fears, losses, gains, surprises, barriers, and struggles throughout these transitions. The members of the group will decide on the topics for each session based on our life experiences. We will meet monthly on the second Tuesday of the month from 7:30-9 p.m. from October – June. Facilitator: Rick Hawkins. If you would like more information or would like to participate contact Lillian Anderson at

Jobseeker Buddy Group — Martin Plass
Tuesdays, 10 – 11:30 a.m., Library
The Jobseeker Buddy Group is a small support group for people looking for new or better jobs. We provide encouragement, feedback, ideas, résumé suggestions, job leads, unemployment assistance, advice and networking opportunities to each other. Questions: For a list of jobs that are sought visit:

Caring for Older Adults — Miriam Baker and Deborah Blumberg
Thursday, June 2, 7:30 p.m., Conference Room
Many people are juggling jobs, families and their parents’ or other family members’ increasing medical needs, frequent emergencies and ongoing need for care. How do we cope with the needs of our loved ones and find some balance in our own lives? What do we need to learn as we take on this task? How do we find information and community? If you find yourself in this position, you are welcome at this group for discussion and support. This is a drop-in group so please attend when it is convenient for you.

Program & Committee Updates Unitarian Universalist Service Committee Team Monthly Note
The UUSC invites you to attend Justice Sunday on June 5th. Not only does this yearly event inspire us through the stories of UUSC’s work, but it also reminds us of First Church ties to its origin in the thirties.
     This year’s Justice Sunday is especially meaningful as our guest, the Rev. Dr. William Schultz, is preaching one of his last sermons as the outgoing President and CEO of the organization. His distinguished career also includes directing Amnesty International and the presidency of the UUA among many other accomplishments.
     Special refreshments and UUSC literature will be available at both coffee hours. For a very easy way to help the UUSC today, go to the website action center to sign one of its important petitions.
~ Alice Trexler for the UUSC Team

Belmont Food Pantry
First Church members staff the opening of the Belmont Food Pantry on the second Tuesday of every month. There will be a sign-up table after Sunday’s service to recruit volunteers for the months of June through September.
     Volunteers work for about 90 minutes, from 5 – 6:30 p.m. Please stop by the sign-up table in the Gathering Hall to volunteer to help out one evening during the upcoming months.

Grow Clinic!alt

Stock the Shelves for Summer! Last Chance for Good Deeds! Please remember to add something for the GROW CLINIC in your cart this week. You’ll be glad you did.
     May and June Special Request: Your favorite items from the shopping list — pick one up in the Lower Hall or outside the Sanctuary.
     Food: One of the Most Important Medicines

Caring Connection
The Caring Connection provides support to members of our community who need short-term help. Please let us know if you or someone you know would benefit from our support. Contact Laurie Graham at or Janice at the Church, 617-484-1054, ext. 201.

Lay Pastoral Care Team
The Lay Pastoral Care Team works with and supports the senior minister in reaching out to members and friends of the First Church who are adjusting to change, loss, illness or death. We share in moments of celebration and happiness. We reach out to those who are unable to get out and who would like a visit. Please contact us through the Web site or the church office if we might be of help or comfort.

A list of all church committees & groups is online. ]

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Next issue: June 7: last regular issue of church year

Please send your announcements, news, events, and other submissions to by noon on Wednesday, June 1. Please note that items may be edited for space and clarity.

Unitarian Deadlines through August 2016

  • June 14, “Lay Led Service” issue: Deadline June 8
  • Midsummer issue: July 26: Deadline July 20
  • Tuesday, September 6, 2016: Deadline August 31

Church Staff

Senior Minister: Rev. David Bryce — 617-484-1054, ext. 202;
Minister Emeritus: Rev. Dr. Victor Carpenter — 617-676-6186;
Minister of Music Emerita: Rev. Alfa Joy Radford —
Director of Music: Ian Garvie — 617-484-1054, ext. 206;
Organist & Assistant Music Director: Dylan Sauerwald — 617-484-1054, ext. 206;
Acting Director of CRE: Charlotte Lehmann — 617-484-1054, ext. 205;
Director of Youth Programs: Julie Ennis — 617-484-1054, ext. 204;
Adult Programs Advisor: Lillian Anderson — 617-484-1054, ext. 207;
Church Administrator: Janice Zazinski — 617-484-1054, ext. 201;
Membership Coordinator: Jim Staton — 617-484-1054, ext. 207;
Sexton: Luis Carrion — 617-484-1054

Office hours: Monday – Friday, 9 – 3

617-484-1054 |
Street:       404 Concord Ave., Belmont
Mailing:   PO Box 113, Belmont, Mass. 02478

Parish Board, 2016 – 2017

President: Ana Hammock —
Vice President: Catherine Claypoole —
Treasurer: Penny Schafer —
Clerk: Downing Cless —
Ex-Officio President: Todd Schatzki —


  • Lauren Corning
  • Deveaux Duckworth
  • Peter Guthrie
  • Jackie James
  • Eloise McGaw
  • Sara Oaklander
  • Marion Westgate

Parish Board minutes are available online and are posted on the Lower Hall bulletin board.

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