This week at First Church April 9 – 15

“The Story of the Universe, Ignoring Details with Andrea Prestwich and Edwin Taylor – Sunday, April 15, 12:30pm, LibraryUU Alliance – “Our Democracy is in Trouble” – April 18 Potluck Lunch at 12noon and program at 1pm in the Parish Hall
“Can the Arts Foster Social Change?” – April 26
Women’s Spring Potluck Supper – April 27
Implicit Bias – April 29

Information about the Minns Lecture Series


“What is the one group, event, or program you’d like to see in the adult programs’ offerings that is currently not happening?”

Please reply to Lillian Anderson – –
with your suggestion.

James Hencke, 8-9 p.m., Classroom 5

In meditation practice, we allow ourselves to dwell in the present moment. We find that by developing our awareness and compassion we can open ourselves, relax into situations, and enjoy our life!

Martin Plass
Tuesdays as needed, Library

The jobseeker buddy group is a small support group for people looking for new or better jobs. We provide encouragement, feedback, ideas, resume suggestions, job leads, unemployment assistance, advice and networking opportuniites to each other.
For more information contact to be sure they are meeting. For a list of needed jobs go to


“Native Plants in the Home Garden”
Joanne Vieira
Wednesday, April 11, 7:00pm, Parish Hall

Founding Director of Horticulture, Tower Hill Botanic Garden and a frequent lecturer on a variety of horticultural topics, Joanne is passionate about native plants and will focus on incorporating native plants into suburban gardens.

This Horticultural Lecture is in memory of Anne Allen, whose family were early members of First Church and wereresponsible for the Tiffany window.


Andrea Prestwich and Edwin Taylor
Sunday, April 15, 12:30pm, Library

We live in a universe with many wonders…….a multitude of stars with planets, stars that explode, galaxies that host super-massive black holes. In this talk, Ed and Andrea will ignore details and focus on the big picture. What is our universe made of? How did it begin and how will it end?

We’ll show that current evidence points towards a universe that is expanding and started with a hot Big Bang, contains a mysterious substance called Dark Matter and that the expansion is being accelerated by an unknown force called Dark Energy. The end? Death of our Sun and a sky with fewer and fewer stars.


Postponed from March!
Wednesday, April 18, 12:00pm potluck Lunch, 1pm Program, Parish Hall
Program “Our Democracy is in Trouble”

All men and women are invited to join us on Wednesday, April 18 at noon for the Alliance potluck lunch and program.
Please let us know whether you will bring: salad, main dish or dessert when you RSVP. The program will begin in the Parish Hall at 1pm.

Fred Van Deusen from the First Parish in Concord social justice group, Reclaim Our Democracy, will be presenting on the topic “Our Democracy is in Trouble”. Fred will trace the roots of escalating inequality to the dysfunction we see in our federal government, and we will discuss what we as citizens can do about it.

R.S.V.P. to, or 617-484-1054 (ext. 10). Please email or call Pat Hawkins, Alliance Program, with any questions:, 617-489-2058

Ken and Nicole Bernstein
Thursday, April 19, 7:30pm, Conference Room
Kirk Israel will lead the discussion on “Hidden Motives”

“In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Robin Hanson about our hidden motives in everyday life. They discuss selfishness, hypocrisy, norms and meta-norms, cheating, deception, self-deception, education, the evolutionary logic of conversation, social status, signaling and counter-signaling, common knowledge, AI, and many other topics.”

Eva Patalas
Thursday, April 19, 8:00pm, Location TBD

Enjoy the fun and fellowship of crafting with a genial
group on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of the month. 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 Eva with any questions.


Melissa Irion
Friday, April 20, 7:30pm, 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. Meets monthly on the 3rd Friday.


FCB Green – John Keller and John Kolterman
Sunday, April 22, 12:30pm, Parish Hall

Socially Responsible Investing with FCBGreen.
Would you like to better align your personal investments to match your social, moral and ethical beliefs? If so, FCBGreen will be offering an educational session on Socially Responsible Investing (SRI), to be held on Sunday, Earth Day, 4/22. This session will be 12:30-2pm in the Parish Hall and will be led by John Keller and John Kolterman.

This article from the New York Times offers a good primer to get acquainted with the subject of SRI.

Society is demanding that companies serve a social purpose and should benefit all of their stakeholders, including shareholders, employees, customers and the communities in which they operate. If you’d like to learn how you might align your own investments accordingly, please consider attending this informational session.


Karl Klasson and Anne Stuart
Wednesday, April 25, 7:30pm, Library

This month’s book is The Cat’s Table by Michael Ondaatje.
“For my money, Michael Ondaatje is the greatest living writer in the English language. . . . The wide-eyed love of the world and its wonders, the kindness he offers to his characters and readers, the elegant lyricism of his sentences, the joy of storytelling-all that is great in his other books is fully present in The Cat’s Table. . . . Mr. Ondaatje restores belief in the beauty and power of literature and, by extension, of humanity. In this dark, terrible world, The Cat’s Table has healing powers.” -Aleksandar Hemon

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.

A panel discussion with Downing Cless, Nate Sellers, Jon Svetkey, and Betty Stone
Thursday, April 26, 7:30pm, Parish Hall

We live in a time of uncertainty and the arts can both provoke us to action and sharpen our focus about what is important.

Tufts University Associate Professor of Drama Emeritus, longtime collaborator with Underground Railway Theater, and board member of Central Square Theater, Downing Cless, will explore Brecht and activist theaters such as Bread and Puppet Theatre, San Francisco Mime Troupe, Free Southern Theater, Teatro Campesino, and locally Underground Railway Theater.

First Church Director of RE, Nate Sellers has developed a curriculum to explore existential cinemas and has lectured in film and media studies. Using films such as 12 Angry Men, Philadelphia, The Thin Blue Line, Birth of a Nation, Cleo from 5 to 7, Do the Right Thing, and others he will discuss the social changes these films inspired.

Songwriter and musician, Jon Svetkey has released 10 albums of original music and with his band, The Loomers, has performed nationally and locally. He’ll explore how music and social action have walked hand in hand, voices raised for decades – Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan, James Brown, The Clash, Bob Marley, Public Enemy
and others.

Photographer Betty Stone, is a member of the Cambridge Art Association and the Winchester Artists Network.
Images by activist photographers of the Civil Rights Movement may resonate the most for many, but before that critical era and since, photographers have “told the stories” of the disenfranchised to “bear witness” and trigger change.

Friday, April 27, 7:00pm, Parish Hall

All women are invited to share food, friendship and fun as we come together once again to connect and re-connect.

Bring an appetizer, main dish, salad or dessert AND a beverage to share.

No RSVP necessary. And bring your friends too!


Ann Dexter
Sunday, April 29, 12:30pm, Library

Implicit bias refers to unconscious associations regarding gender, race, age and other characteristics, both favorable and unfavorable, that affect our actions and decisions. Please join Ann Dexter, Associate Vice President of Human Resources, Bentley University, to explore the concept of implicit bias and how it may impact our lives.


Bridging Class, Cultural and Racial Separations
Sunday, April 29, 7:00pm, Library
Social Action Committee

Please join Belmont Against Racism, The First Church in Belmont Social Action Committee, the Belmont Religious Council, the Belmont police department and graduates of Youth Build as we continue our discussion about how to end racism in Belmont and in the wider world.

Miriam Baker and Deborah Blumberg
Tuesday, May 1, 7:30pm, 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.

Minns Lecture Series

The Minns Lectures, Spring 2018
The Religiously Complex Congregation in the Religiously Complex World

March 3 | 6:30 p.m.
First Parish in Cambridge, MA
1446 Massachusetts Avenue

April 7 | 6:30 p.m.
First Church in Boston, MA
66 Marlborough Street

May 5 | 6:30 p.m.
King’s Chapel Parish House in Boston, MA
64 Beacon Street

Lecture One: Living a Multireligious Life