The Unitarian – May 12, 2017

The Unitarian – May 12, 2017 (PDF)

A Call To The Annual Meeting at The First Church in Belmont — Sunday, May 21, 2017, 4 p.m.
Pursuant to a call by Ana Hammock, President of the Parish Board, you are hereby notified that the Annual Meeting of The First Church in Belmont, Unitarian Universalist will be held on Sunday, May 21, 2017 at 4 p.m. in the Parish Hall for the election of officers, status of next year’s budget, a resolution on divestment, and the transaction of such other businesses as may lawfully come before the meeting.
     Hereof, fail not, and make due attendance at said meeting and time.
     Only active adult members, who have had standing as such for not less than seven days prior to the meeting, may vote. No proxies will be accepted: you must attend the meeting in order to vote. — Downing Cless, Parish Clerk
     Ana Hammock adds: Are you ready to vote on divestment? Looking for more information? If so visit If you are interested in voting on this important decision come to the Annual Meeting. No Proxy votes will be accepted. Come one, come all!

Sunday Worship —May 14

Coming of Age Sunday

Prelude: Bagatelles by Robert Vandall (1944 – 2017); Mariko Findell, piano

9 a.m. Musical Interlude: On A Rouen Melody by Sir Peter Hurford (b. 1930); Simon Andrews, organ

11 a.m. Senior Choir Anthem: How Did the Rose by Joan Szymko

Offertory: Traümerei by Robert Schumann (1810 – 56); Mariko Findell, piano

The flowers in the Chancel are given by Anne and Bob Selman, to all the mothers, fathers, families of birth and of friendship, old and young, teachers and caregivers, lifelong and casual, we give our very deepest awe, gratitude, and celebration for being the village raising our world’s children!

Upcoming Services

  • Sunday, May 21: New Member Sunday
    • Sunday, May 21, 4 p.m.: Annual Meeting in the Parish Hall
  • Sunday, May 28: Memorial Day — one service at 10:30 a.m.

UU General Assembly: June 21 – 25, New Orleans: Resist and Rejoice!
General Assembly (GA) is the annual meeting of the UUA, where attendees worship, witness, learn, connect, and make policy for the Association. First Church has eight delegate positio ns and since this year we will elect the next President of the UUA, it is important to vote. You can also be a delegate and not attend or attend remotely. Registration fees increase after May 1.
     This year’s theme of GA “Resist and Rejoice!” will awaken and deepen the commitment of Unitarian Universalists to the power and possibility of working in solidarity with those on the margins. Registration and housing information are on the web-site
     Delegates must be FCB members, and there is the possibility of partial subsidy which can be discussed with Andrea Spencer-Linzie. If you are interested in attending or being a delegate contact Lillian Anderson at

Opportunity To Lead Summer Worship Services
Summer Lay-Led Services have become an important aspect of our shared ministry. These are important touchstones during the summer months, when travel and vacation separate us as a community. They provide opportunities to gather in less formal ways and smaller numbers to engage in worship led by members and friends of First Church.
     Have you ever thought to yourself “This would make a great worship service” or “This aspect of spirituality is rich and intriguing for a lay led theme”? Do you have a personal or professional interest that would enrich us?
     The Worship Committee welcomes inquiries about leading a service this summer from June 18- September 3. Committee members will be available for support, resources, and brainstorming themes/ideas for services. Recent themes included Ethical Eating, Buddhist Meditation and Mindfulness in Everyday Live, Tolerating Intolerance, Lughnasadh Ritual Celebrating First Fruits and many others.
     If you would like to consider leading a service this summer or partnering with someone else to develop a meaningful experience for fellow parishioners, please contact Ariane Frank at 617-484-2149 or

Divestment Information for the Annual Meeting
Please visit to read up on divestment material prepared by FCBGreen.

Stewardship Drive Update
A heartfelt thanks to all First Church members and friends who pledged or contributed to the 2017 March Stewardship Drive. Thanks to your generosity, we have reached $577,860, which is 95% of our goal. Please join us at First Church Annual Meeting on Sunday, May 21, 4:00 p.m. to hear more details about the Stewardship Drive results.
~ With gratitude, The Stewardship Committee

Rummage Sale Recap
The 74th Rummage Sale was such a roaring success! Many hands really do make light work. Because of the contributions from First Church and the tireless labor of many volunteers, we raised approximately $10,000!!! There are still consignment items yet to be accounted for, so we won’t know an exact total until later. The cooperative spirit and camaraderie made the entire experience a hugely positive one for our community. At times there was a feeling of an old-fashioned barn raising—something that too rarely happens in this fast-paced, plugged-in world. And it was fun! A special thank-you goes to Lynn Peterson Read for her work as our third co-chairperson.
     We are very pleased that we met the goals we originally set for this year’s sale, including increasing the benefit for non-profits and providing free-shopping for our refugee family partners. It was beautiful to watch them walk out with their arms full of “gifts” for their new homes. In addition, many non-profit organizations benefited from our recycling of leftovers after the sale ended.
     The profits from this year’s Sale will go to maintain the beautiful stained glass windows in our sanctuary; will provide needed funds for our Partner Church in Transylvania; and will allow the Social Action Committee to continue with vital social justice projects. We were also able to buy a new hand-cart for Luis and replace one of the many wobbly card tables used by the Coffee House.
     We thank our volunteers and the First Church community from all the parts of our hearts!
               Kathy Crawley and Priscilla Cobb

Lisa Bastoni

The Second Friday Coffeehouse on May 12 — tonight!
The Second Friday Coffeehouse on May 12 will feature singer-songwriter Lisa Bastoni, accompanied by Jeff Butcher. The opening act is Roger Miller, John Mc Gah, and Chuck Greene. The featured beneficiary is Belmont Against Racism.

Fellowship Spring Hike — Saturday, May 13, 2-5 pm
Pack up your kids, put on your hiking boots and join us for the Fellowship Spring Hike at Belmont’s Rock Meadow & Beaver Brook -1:45pm – meet at FCB Parking Lot or come at 2:00 pm to Lone Tree Hill Parking Lot at 248 Mill Street, Belmont
     This year we will hike through Lone Tree Hill, Rock Meadow and into Beaver Brook. The hike will take us over meadows, hills, along streams, through pine alley and passed the infamous Lone Tree. On the way back we will stop for a snack at Martin’s house.
     The hike is ~3-4 miles, easy terrain, will take about 2 hours plus a snack break and is suitable for kids and older people capable of walking in the woods (bring some water). Rain date is May 20. Please RSVP to
     For last minute questions, call Martin Plass at 617-484-1237.

Adult Programs News

Belmont UU Alliance Lunch & Program — All Women & Men Welcome
Wednesday, May 17; 12 noon Lunch in the Upper Hall; 1 p.m. Program
All women and men are invited to welcome Spring with a social gathering, including a pot-luck lunch, for our closing meeting of the year. Please let us know whether you will bring: a salad, main dish or dessert when you RSVP.
     After the meal, we will gather in small groups to become better acquainted with each other. Please bring a photo or object meaningful to your life, to share with the group as we get to know each other.
R.s.v.p. to, or call 617-484-1054 ( ext. 10) with what you will bring.

Facing Illness Together — Kathy Lind
Thursday, May 18, 7 p.m., Tinkham Room
We welcome you to join our ongoing group as we explore ways to live bravely while facing health challenges – either of our own, or of loved ones for whom we act as caregivers. Our group provides a safe place for us to talk about our concerns and our ideas for moving forward. We share strategies for setting goals and living positively with the medical issues in front of us. By nurturing our connections, we comfort and support each other. Through compassionate listening, we help one another understand his or her own challenges.

Science and Spirituality — Ken and Nicole Bernstein
Thursday, May 18, 7:30 p.m., Conference Room
Stuart Carter will lead a discussion on a reading from the book The Meaning of Human Experience by Harvard Professor Edward O. Wilson, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of numerous publications on science and the humanities. Professor Wilson lays out his science-based alternative to what he terms the “creation myths” of major western religions. A selection from this book is available at the website

Fiber Arts Fellowship — Eva Patalas
Meets every 1st and 3rd Thursday, May 18, 8 p.m., Location TBD
Enjoy the fun and fellowship of crafting with a genial group. If you knit, crochet, quilt, bead or dabble in other low-mess crafts, please come join us. Projects could include creating items for non-profit organizations such as Caps for Kids, making small gifts for the Holiday Fair or working on personal projects. Everyone is welcome and no commitment is necessary. Contact with any questions.

Parenting Kids with Challenges — Melissa Irion
Friday, May 19, 7:30 p.m., Library
Does your child have special challenges? Has he/she been diagnosed with Aspergers, ADHD, or sensory problems? We will offer support and share experience in a non-judgmental space. Snacks provided.

The New World of Genome Editing — Alan Cantor
Sunday, May 21, 12:30 p.m., Parish Hall
Alan will take us through the clinical promise and ethical considerations in this new field. Examples of how gene editing are currently being applied to treat human disease and an understanding of the basic information about genetics will be provided so that we can discuss the implications of this new technology.

Beyond Ferguson: Bridging Class, Cultural and Racial Separations — Social Action Committee
Sunday, May 21, 7 p.m., Library
Please join Belmont Against Racism, The First Church in Belmont Social Action Committee, the Belmont Religious Council, the Belmont police department and graduates of YouthBuild as we continue our discussion about how to end racism in Belmont and in the wider world.

First Church Book Group — Karl Klasson & Anne Stuart
Wednesday, May 24, 7:30 p.m., Library
This month’s book is Lila by Marilynne Robinson
The Book Group is always open to new members. There is no long term commitment. Feel free to join us for a single evening’s discussion or to become a regular participant. We ask only that you confirm your intention to attend on a particular evening by the Monday before each session. Please contact Anne Stuart at: or Karl Klasson at to confirm attendance if you are interested in participating or have any questions.

Hootenanny/Jam Session — Jon Svetkey
Wednesday, May 31, 7:30 p.m., Parlor
Are you a closet guitar hero with no band? A great shower singer? Then we’ve got just the thing for you: a good old fashioned Hootenanny! Bring along your portable acoustic instrument (i.e., guitar, mandolin, banjo, harmonica, shaker, suitcase, jaw harp, spoons…), your voice or just yourself and — most of all — bring your enthusiasm. And your iPads, iPhones etc. so we can access words to the songs. All levels encouraged!
Save the dates – last Wednesdays of each month.

Caring for Older Adults — Miriam Baker and Deborah Blumberg
Thursday, June 1, 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. This will be the last session until October 5th.

Social Action News —Click here to sign up for the Social Action e-newsletter.

Mothers’ Day Walk for Peace, May 14
Please join a group from Belmont that will be walking in the 21st Annual Mother’s Day Walk for Peace on Sunday, May 14 to support the work of the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute. To register for the 6.8-mile walk, from Fields Corner to City Hall, please go to and sign up as an individual or as part of the “Team Belmont” group. Ask your friends and family to sponsor you.
     Donations can be made on-line or by checks payable to LDB Peace Institute, mailed to 15 Christopher Street, Dorchester, MA 02122. Belmont walkers will meet at the Alewife T station, in front of the entrance to Bertucci’s, at 7 a.m. to take the T to Fields Corner.
     For more information or questions about walking with the Belmont group, contact Priscilla Cobb at
     The Peace Institute, founded in 1994 after the murder of 15-year-old Louis D. Brown, is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating young people and the community about the value of peace and assisting survivors of homicide victims with immediate crisis management services and ongoing support to continue to make Louis’ vision a reality. It was co-founded by Louis’ mother, Chaplain Tina Chery. For more information:

The Sanctuary Movement
Sunday, June 4, 12:30 p.m., Parish Hall
The Sanctuary Movement is a growing movement of immigrant and faith communities, protecting and standing with immigrants facing deportation. Come and learn about Sanctuary and about how we can get involved as individuals and as a congregation.

Belmont Food Pantry
First Church members staff the opening of the Belmont Food Pantry on the second Tuesday of every month. Volunteers work for about 90 minutes, from 5 – 6:30 p.m.; sign up online: Questions to

Grow Clinic!alt Stock The Shelves For Summer!!!
Polysol with Iron Liquid Vitamins. Canned Fruits Packed in Syrup. Canned Vegetables. Carnation Instant Breakfast. Peanut Butter. Thanks for your generosity!
     May and June Special Request: Your favorite items from the shopping list
Food: One of the Most Important Medicines

UUSC Team Note for May/June
Visit (UU College of Social Justice within UUSC) for information on cross cultural, Immigration, and environmental justice trainings, trips, and resources. Find downloadable courses for individual or group use as related to any of these topics. For example, the environmental justice course begins with an examination of Naomi Klein’s book, This Changes Everything.
     The author of the lesson asks that we reflect on US capitalism and its foundational link to fossil fuels. In the meantime, Klein asserts that such a foundation cannot be changed without “heavy duty interventions.” During this first lesson, students consider how UU values can shape a better response to climate change. First Church will have an opportunity to vote on a small step in this direction at the annual meeting.

Community News

First Parish in Concord invites you to “Requiem for the American Dream” — Monday, May 15, 7 – 9 p.m.
Followed by discussion moderated by State Senator Mike Barrett
In this 2016 documentary Noam Chomsky discusses how the concentration of wealth and power among a small elite has polarized American society and brought about the decline of the middle class. Through interviews filmed over four years, Chomsky unpacks the principles that have brought us to the crossroads of historically unprecedented inequality.
     Join us to view this 75 minute film which will be followed by discussion. Home-made refreshments included. Free and open to the public at the First Parish in Concord, 20 Lexington Road, Concord.
     For more information about our group, please visit

Share your “Belmont story” in a town-wide oral history project
The Belmont Story Project, the town’s local, oral-history recording project, is seeking participants. If you have a Belmont connection and a story, they would like to hear from you. 
     For more information contact Nancy McColm, or 617-993-2870. You can also find out more on the library’s website

Picadilly Farm to offer a discount to FCB community on CSA shares
Announcing a new option for summer veggie lovers: CSA produce boxes delivered to First Church on Thursdays, from Picadilly Farm! For $735 paid in advance, reserve 23 deliveries, June through mid November. The entire share is grown on Jenny and Bruce Wooster’s (brother to parishioner Jim Wooster!) family farm, and is certified organic. To learn more and then sign up, visit
     If you sign up by May 15, type SPRING into the coupon field to receive $20 discount. Shareholders support every aspect of operating our farm — from paying a living wage, to caring for the soil with the long view in mind, to growing our food with organic and other best practices. Since 2006, we thank you!

Connect with UU actions, events & resources

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.

Next issue: Friday, May 19
The next issue of The Unitarian is Friday, May 19. Please e-mail items to by noon on Wednesday, May 17. Items may be edited for space and clarity.

Church Staff — click here for directory
404 Concord Ave., Belmont | 617-484-1054 |
Office hours: Monday – Friday, 9 – 3

Parish Board, 2016 – 2017 — click here
Parish Board minutes are available online and are posted on the Upper Gathering Hall bulletin board.

Reverend Bryce’s 2017 Sabbatical
Please visit for details about pulpit and pastoral coverage while Rev. Bryce is away, from January to June 30, 2017.

Easy ways to support & stay in touch with FCB

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