The Unitarian – September 6, 2016

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Sunday Worship — September 11: Ingathering Ceremony

We join together in our sanctuary to renew ourselves, and to re-dedicate ourselves to one another and to the ongoing life of spiritual growth. Bring water collected from a special place: from your travels over the summer, from a place nearby or from your home; these living waters will flow together as we join hearts together.

Welcome and Announcements
9 a.m.: Ana Hammock; 11 a.m.: Deveaux Duckworth

Senior Choir Anthem: I Come, Ye Servants of the Lord; Christopher Tye (1505 – 72)

Prelude: Mach’s mit mir, Gott, nach deiner Gut;  Johann Gottfried Walther (1684 – 1748)

Postlude: from Toccata; Georgi Mushel (1909 – 89)

The flowers on the Chancel table this Sunday are given by Michelle and Jeanne Johnson with gratitude for the lay-led services this summer, with special thanks to Ariane Breitenbach Frank.

  • Services at 9 & 11 a.m.; childcare is provided.
  • Sunday, September 18 — Rev. David Bryce
  • Sermon archive

Reflections from Rev. David Bryce, Senior Minister

Rev. David Bryce

Rev. David Bryce

As summer winds down we find ourselves entering into an exciting new year. Four new staff members, including an Intern Minister, will bring new energy and ideas to our programs. Those staff who have been with us for a while will continue to provide us with their wisdom and stability.
     That mix of stability and renewal is quite apt for the season of autumn. Like every season it is a time of mixed endings and beginnings. School starts up again, and life changes for so many of our children, youth and young adults—and for their families.
     It is a time of new jobs—and not just for those who are faculty members or recent graduates.
     Even though we are more than two months past the summer solstice and the lessening of daily sunlight, many of our evenings and mornings are only now beginning to have the chill of autumn and the coming winter.
     And the leaves of the trees now show the first hints of their coming autumnal beauty and glory.
     It is the season when our “religious year” begins, when we have our Ingathering service with our Water Communion.
     And so it is that we enter into the time when the beauty and glory of our religious life together in community begins to show itself most brightly.
     May we each acknowledge the beginnings and endings, the stabilities and renewals, the ongoing wisdoms and new learnings in our lives and in our hearts.
     Welcome back.

Welcome Back Reception, September 8

The Fellowship Committee and the Parish Board invite you to reconnect with your friends after a long summer break, meet & greet staff, officers, and new church members, and socialize at this informal gathering!

  • 7 – 8:30 p.m. in the Parish Hall
  • Appetizers and light refreshments
  • Bring a bottle of wine to share
  • Childcare and entertainment for young kids

From Andrea Spencer-Linzie, Intern Minister

Andrea Spencer-Linzie

Andrea Spencer-Linzie

Hello Members and Friends of FCB! I am really looking forward to getting to know you and joining you this coming year as your ministerial intern. I’m ready to learn with you and widen and deepen my spiritual journey.
     I grew up in the United Methodist faith tradition, and happily my home congregation was a progressive congregation in NJ. I attended Drew Theological School in Madison, NJ and graduated with a Masters of Divinity in 1988. While my goal was to enter ordained ministry at that time, I chose not to because of the UM denomination’s decisions to disallow the ordination of LGBTQ persons. I could not in good conscience support the United Methodist position, nor my ordination in the United Methodist Church at that time. I continued as a member of Methodist congregations until 2000 when I started to attend an UU congregation in Montclair, NJ, eventually joining the UU church in Cherry Hill, NJ, which continues to be my home congregation.
     From very early in my life, beginning in high school, I felt called to professional ministry. Due to my decision not to get ordained in the Methodist Church I created a career in academia and non-profit work. I enjoyed both immensely, but I am internally compelled to circle back to my spirit’s true desire of ordained ministry. I believe that both my academic work and my non-profit work in various social justice areas will enrich my ministerial work.
     My sense of ministry has always been about truly caring about people and our world, rather than “what to believe.” My “caring” takes the shape of authentically paying attention to others, and to radically hear them and affirm their being. A ministry of “presence” was really imprinted on me very early. “To be with” another without advising, correcting, or questioning is a fairly radical act and a very deeply meaningful one for me. This ministry of presence is based on my real belief in our connectedness and that our connectedness can be healing. My “caring ministry” also includes paying attention to and interacting in our world so that systems and structures and meanings are created to promote justice, health, and dignity, for individuals and for us communally.
     I am also a musician. I play the cello and sing. Both my parents and all my siblings are also musicians of various levels. Music has always been in my life and it is a significant joy for me and helps me connect with the “spirit of life.”
     A few of my hopes for my internship include deepening a ministry of “presence” and all its facets and creating a radical practice of self-care. I tend to “over do it.” An intentional and continual search for self-awareness is important to me, and seems key to my own well-being as well as an authentic ministerial praxis.
     I am so excited to be with you for the coming year and I am grateful for your warm welcome support, and your willingness to help teach me and shape me for ministerial practice.

In peace and faith,
~ Andrea Spencer-Linzie

Music Notes

As the beginning of the church year quickly approaches, I would like to call your attention to a few important announcements from the music program.
     The many choirs at the church are open to all members of the community, and are always welcoming new singers.

  • The Senior Choir sings every Sunday at the11:00 a.m. service and rehearses Sundays at 9:30 a.m.
  • The Nova Choir, an un-auditioned adult choir, sings twice a month at the 9:00am service and rehearses Thursdays at 6:45 p.m.
  • The three children’s choirs accept students from Kindergarten through high school and do not require auditions to join.
  • If you are interested in singing with us, please contact me at

     I am thrilled to announce that Simon Andrews has joined the church as the new Organist and Assistant Music Director. Simon brings a wealth of experience to the position and will be a

Simon Andrews

Simon Andrews

wonderful addition to the program. Simon was born in England and educated at Christ Church, Oxford, the Royal Academy of Music, and the University of California at Berkeley. In addition to many years of work as a pianist, organist, and director, Simon is also a composer. Winner of the 1985 Benjamin Britten International Composition Prize, his music has been featured at the Aldeburgh and St. Alban’s Festivals, broadcast on BBC radio, and widely performed in many cities throughout the world. Simon’s wife, Anne Mason, is Minister at First Parish Unitarian Church in Lexington.
     The first Nova Choir rehearsal will be Thursday, September 8, in the Sanctuary. The first children’s choir rehearsal will be held on Monday, September 12, in the Parish Hall. Junior Choir (K-4th grade) will rehearse from 6:30-7:00 p.m., and Chancel and Youth Choirs (5th grade and above) will rehearse from 7:00-8:30 p.m. Auditions for lead roles in the musical will be on Wednesday, September 14, and Thursday, September 15, from 4-6 p.m. Children will only have to attend auditions for one hour.
     I am excited about the new season at First Church and am looking forward to exploring the many aspects of music making within the church community.

~ Ian Garvie, Music Director

From Ana Hammock, Parish Board President

Please join me in welcoming Sana Saeed as the incoming Director of Youth Programs! Sana is pursuing a Master of Divinity at Harvard Divinity School. She was born in Manchester, UK and

Sana Saeed

Sana Saeed

moved to the US when she was sixteen. As a dual citizen, she grew up in a Pakistani home with the fortune of learning Urdu and Punjabi, as well as English. Her upbringing inspired her love for traveling. Hence, she has traveled to twenty-seven countries so far!
     Sana has seven years of experience working on youth leadership development, religious discrimination, interfaith dialogue and conflict resolution with organizations including the Interfaith Alliance, Unitarian Universalist Association, the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, VA, the Interfaith Youth Action Group and the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
     Together with the Children’s Religious Education team, Sana hopes to collaborate on supporting the lifespan of youth programming at FCB. Welcome Sana!

Among Us

Our deepest sympathy to Roger and Lynn Read and family on the recent, sudden death of their 16-year-old nephew, Charles David Read.

Still a few remaining spaces at Sandy Island! Register now!

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

Second Friday Coffeehouse 2016 – 17 Season

The Coffeehouse Committee wants YOU to have LESS!!! Yes, you read that correctly!
Less what, you ask? Less time reading our pleas and listening to our announcements about Season Ticket Sales. We really want to shorten our active sales season, for your sake and for ours!
     We made record distributions to our beneficiaries last year, approximately two thirds of which came from Season Tickets. This church family made a REAL difference. We should all feel proud! And our demonstrated commitment and generosity proves we can do it again. We just don’t think we need it to take so long each fall!
     So join your friends and colleagues in this major social action commitment and wonderful series of musical events and buy your Season Ticket as soon as you can! Use the drop box outside the church office, send by mail to the church, come to the welcome back gathering Thursday evening 9/8, or get it in person at either Coffee Hour after church in September and October! Full details below.
     By the way, this Ticket admits two adults to all nine shows, a savings of about $100, and ensures your support of all ten featured beneficiaries!
     You can leave cash or a check for $119 made out to First Church in Belmont, memo line noting “Coffeehouse,” in the office drop box, in person at a Coffee Hour, or by mail to First Church in Belmont, 404 Concord Avenue, P.O. Box 113, Belmont, MA 02478. Click here to see this season’s amazing schedule!!!

See you soon!
Your Second Friday Coffeehouse Committee

SAC to host benefit concert for asylum-seeking Central American Families: October 1

 Angelica Reyes witnessed a child getting shot on the street in Honduras; because she took the victim to the hospital, she was targeted by area gangs. She and her son fled Honduras and were imprisoned in Texas for crossing the border.

Angelica Reyes witnessed a child getting shot on the street in Honduras; because she took the victim to the hospital, she was targeted by area gangs. She and her son fled Honduras and were imprisoned in Texas for crossing the border.

     We are delighted to present The Loomers, The Blood Mountain Brothers and a special guest appearance by The Yellow Room (Jon Svetkey and Heather Quay).A benefit concert for Central American asylum-seeking women and their children, recently arrived in the Commonwealth, will be held at the First Church in Belmont in the Parish Hall, Saturday, October 1, at 7 p.m.
     Imprisoned in Texas for crossing the border, thousands of families are being released due to successful litigation in their behalf. Those now residing in Massachusetts desperately need our help. Tickets will be $25 at the door.
     Donate online easily at: For more information, email Bev Freeman at

Putting Our Dollars Where Our Values Are: A Church-Wide Conversation on Fossil Fuel Divestment

All members are urged to attend an informational session leading up to the congregational fossil fuel divestment vote. Panelists will discuss the decision processes and financial experiences of other divested UU congregations, as well as UU values in relation to divesting. The attendees will be able to ask questions to further inform their votes on November 13.
     Watch for more information and sign-up sheets at fall coffee hours. Sundays Oct. 2 and 23 at 12:30 and Monday Nov. 7 at 7 p.m. (overlapping a children’s choir practice).

Coming Soon: Watch for Social Action Weekly Announcements of Volunteer Opportunities and Events!

Social Action Committee Comings-and-Goings

  • Liz Keating is the newest member of our SAC group. She has experience at FCB with a variety of committees and—just in her inaugural evening—has already contributed many useful ideas. Welcome Liz! We are so happy to have you join us.
  • Jackie Neel has graciously volunteered to be the new Co-chair of SAC!!! We are well acquainted with Jackie’s amazing organizational skills and the output from her own personal “idea factory,” and we couldn’t be luckier to have her joining Patricia in leading SAC.
  • Evelyn Corsini has mended from her fracture and will be back again on the SAC team.
  • Our wonderful Bill Zinn has resigned from SAC, as he will be pursuing other avenues of interest. Bill was always a quiet, thoughtful and steady presence in meetings and events. Fortunately he will re-join us for the Holiday Fair and his signature “Spiced Nuts.” We will miss you, Bill. Thanks for everything.
  • NEWS FLASH: The FCB spring Rummage Sale is back on track for May 6. It’s not too early to start packing away for our FCB mega-recycling project. Kathy Crawley and Priscilla Cobb are already signed on the leadership team, and we are looking for other co-chairs as well. The more the merrier.
  • Want to fulfill your longings for a little Social Justice work but are short on time? SAC always has short-term/minimal commitment opportunities. Contact Patricia Garcia ( or Jackie Neel (; or better yet come to a 7:00 Monday evening meeting (4th Monday of each month) and check us out in person. We’re always glad to have another face around our table.
  • SAVE THE DATE – A benefit concert for Central American asylum-seeking women and their children, recently arrived in the Commonwealth, will be held at the First Church in Belmont, Oct. 1, at 7 p.m. See the article above for more information.

Adult Programs News

The Adult Programs Committee (Debbie Dobbins, chair) has been working to provide some very interesting programs. Our Fall Adult Programs Brochure will be available on at the services on Sunday, September 11 and on-line in the next Unitarian. We’ll look forward to seeing you at coffee hour on Opening Sunday! Here is a preview of some of our fall offerings:

  • You’ll have the opportunity to hear about the UUA General Assembly that took place in Columbus, Ohio at the end of the June. Alice Trexler, Andrea Spencer-Linzie, our ministerial intern, Downing Cless and Lillian Anderson will reflect on their experiences on Sunday, Sept. 25 at 10:15 a.m. in the Parlor between our two services.
  • We’ll be having our traditional women’s and men’s fall potluck suppers on Sept. 30 and Oct. 7, respectively.
  • The Rev. Jim Sherblom will be with us on Sunday, Oct. 16 at 12:30 p.m. in the Library to discuss his spiritual pilgrimages to Turkey and China.
  • Mike Widmer will be speaking on Tuesday, Oct. 25 at 7:30 p.m. in the Parish Hall to give us his impressions as we approach Election Day.

Housing Available

Furnished, comfortable room for rent in a lovely house on the hill in Belmont; off-street parking, central a/c, microwave. Work in garden is possible to reduce the rent; car is necessary. Working person or student only. Please call Trudy Eyges at 617-484-6833 in the late morning or evening.

Belmont UU Alliance Concord Boat Cruise & Lunch

Wednesday, September 21, 2016; meet to carpool from the Church at 12 noon
Please join us for the Belmont UU Alliance Concord River Boat Cruise & Lunch on Wednesday, September 21. Make your reservation early as we are limited to 20 seats.
     We will carpool from the Church at 12 noon; the cruise leaves the dock at 1:00 p.m. from the South Bridge Boat House, 496 Main St. (route 62), Concord.
     Please contact First Church Administrator, Janice Zazinski, at or 617-484-1054 for reservations by September 10th. Inform Janice of your sandwich choice for lunch: chicken or tuna salad, ham & cheese, sliced turkey, vegetarian. Lunch also includes salad, fruit, dessert and drink.
     Please make your $30 check payable to the Belmont Unitarian Alliance and deliver or mail it to the Church at First Church Belmont, P.O. Box 113, Belmont, MA 02478. Call Pat Hawkins at 617-489-2058 or email with questions.

Other Belmont UU Alliance Fall Events:

  • 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 

Announcing New Nametags!

The Membership Committee is pleased to announce the rollout of a new name tag system that begins the very first Sunday of our Church year on September 11 and WE NEED YOUR HELP!
     To help us with this large undertaking of transitioning the entire congregation to new name tags, we ask you to pick up your new name tag at the Membership table in the upper gathering hall either before you attend Sunday service or after the service during coffee hour. Before you leave church, we then need you to hang up your name tag on your preferred alphabetized name tag peg located at either the front entrance to the sanctuary outside of David’s office or on the pegs located in the upper gathering area.
     We owe a huge debt of gratitude to Judy McSwain and Miriam Baker for their tireless hard work and coordination to make this name tag roll out possible. With everyone’s participation, we can all help to make this transition go as smoothly as possible.

Pilgrim Window News
The Window Committee would like the church community to know that we’re now at the stage where final measurements will be taken just prior to storm window fabrication. Although it may look like nothing has happened since the spring, our engineer, contractor, and fabricator have been working together to design a storm window system which is not only attractive on our historic building but also is sufficient to protect our Pilgrim Window from all types of potential weather and other dangers and to withstand high winds, all the while providing sufficient ventilation for the Window.
    The process of repair, reinstallation, and protection has been long, tedious, and at many times, frustrating for many of us. We ask for your continued patience until we can once again delight in our beautiful Window.

Grow Clinic!

Beginning First Church’s 32nd YEAR of supporting the Grow Clinic at Boston Medical Center! From your shopping cart to the homes of Failure To Thrive infants and children of Boston’s poorest neighborhoods. Pick up a food list for shopping or bring a Special Request:

  • September and October: Protein Power!!! (peanut butter, canned tuna or chicken, canned stews, infant strained chicken/beef/turkey). Collection baskets are in the Lower Hall.

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. ]

Connect with UU actions, events & resources

Next Issue: September 13
Please send your announcements, news, events, and other submissions to by noon on Wednesday, September 7. Please note that items may be edited for space and clarity. Click here to download the 2016-17 editorial calendar.

Church Staff
Senior Minister: Rev. David Bryce — 617-484-1054, ext. 202;
Intern Minister: Andrea Spencer-Linzie — 617-484-1054, ext. 207;
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 and Assistant Music Director: Simon Andrews — 617-484-1054, ext. 206;
Acting Director of CRE: Nate Sellers — 617-484-1054, ext. 205;
Director of Youth Programs: Sana Saeed — 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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