of Scituate, Massachusetts
First Parish
Unitarian Universalist Church
by First Parish on November 1st, 2018

by Pamela M. Barz on October 28th, 2018

In many ways Frankenstein and his creature are doubles of one another.  A theatrical production of the story which played in London a few years ago highlighted that with the actors playing Frankenstein and the creature switching roles every performance. The creature is hideous to look at, but a blind man in the book, unbiased by its appearance, is struck by the sincerity of his words and receives him as an equal.  Had he been raised lovingly, might there have been no story of murder and revenge?  And if Victor were not the handsome son of a wealthy and prominent family, might his actions have been perceived differently and met with different consequences? 
These questions come to us still.  And especially in this week filled with monstrous events – the president wanting to send troops to the border to turn away refugees fleeing violence connected with our history of interference in their countries; pipe bombs mailed to critics of the President; two people killed in a supermarket in Kentucky on Wednesday almost in a fit of pique because the shooter couldn’t accomplish his intention of shooting people a black church; and yesterday’s shooting of congregants in a synagogue – all that physical violence as well as the emotional violence offered to transgender people with the news that the current administration is seeking to define gender as fixed at birth.  What monsters have we created?  What monsters do we need to look at?  And how can we change the story? 
Read the whole sermon here:

by Pamela M. Barz on October 14th, 2018

As I thought this week about all the issues facing our democracy, this labeling of other people who disagree with us or cross us – or cut us off! – this making people “the other” or “those people” seems at the root of them all. 
            And more and more it seems those labels come up:  Those people who want to pull books from the Scituate school curriculum; those people who rejoiced when Brett Kavanaugh took his seat as a Justice of the Supreme Court; those people who deny climate change even as the unprecedented force of Hurricane Michael flattened the Florida Panhandle and killed 17 people including an 11 year old girl in Georgia.  Those people who don’t see the world as I do.  Those people whose point of view I have trouble understanding.  Do you ever “those people” who don’t agree with you? 

by First Parish on October 4th, 2018

by First Parish on September 6th, 2018

by First Parish on July 5th, 2018

by First Parish on May 31st, 2018

Read about what's happening on Sundays and other days in June here

by Pamela M. Barz on May 13th, 2018

"Whatever our gender, whether we are mothers or not, promoting the health and growth of those in our care is the meaning of mothering." Read the whole sermon here:

by Pamela M. Barz on May 6th, 2018

A healthy diet for body, mind and spirit seems ever harder to achieve.  In most households, adults are working full-time out of the home, and if someone is staying at home, that can be a full-time job too.  I get to the end of the day, to that window for cooking and eating dinner before heading out to a meeting or scouts or soccer practice, and even when I’ve planned a balanced meal, I often find myself without the time to cook it.  ...
            And it can be even harder to stick to a healthful diet for our minds and spirits.  The news is confusing, discouraging, certainly not wholesome, and often scary.  Facebook invites us to compare our lives with others who only present their best selves.  We are inundated yet still hungry.   (Read the whole sermon here:)

by First Parish on May 4th, 2018

Read about what's happening on Sundays and other days in May here:

by Pamela M. Barz on April 29th, 2018

"John Lothropp left England for a new world in America, but perhaps the greatest journey he made was in his village in Kent, when he dismantled the framework of belief which confined him to journey into what he felt was a life-giving faith. "  Read the whole sermon here:

by Pamela M. Barz on April 23rd, 2018

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"One of my favorite Charles Addams cartoons shows a college quad with a banner hung between pillars – “Welcome Class of ‘54”. Gathered below is the reuning class of ’54 – scruffy, in patched clothes, not a pin-striped suit or polished loafer among them. In the caption, one alumnus says to another: 'I thought it was me, but maybe the school’s no damn good.'
I am thinking about this cartoon because in June, I’ll return to my college, where there will be reunion banners welcoming alumnae, from members of the class of 1938 to the class of 2013 - none of whom will be in scruffy, patched clothes. And many of us will feel that we are failures compared to those around us." From Pamela Barz's April 22 sermon "Staying Safe/Staying Open" Read the entire sermon here:

by First Parish on April 5th, 2018

Read about Canvass Update and the Dedication of our new sign here:

by Pamela M. Barz on April 1st, 2018

"This is the good news the angels offer to the women at the empty tomb and that they, beyond the bounds of the story, offered to the other disciples.  Love – love which calls them back into their stories as actors, spreaders of the good news of the power of love, beings of love incarnate, as Jesus was and every other dancer of Life.  And this good news comes to us also, inviting us into the dance, into the story, carrying on the love, the life, the power which have flowed through the ages to us and which will flow beyond us to ages yet to come."  Read the full sermon here:

by Pamela M. Barz on April 1st, 2018

“Why are you weeping?” the angels ask Mary.  And she answers with the facts – because they have taken away my Lord and I do not know where they have put him.  But it seems the answer isn’t good enough, because Jesus asks her the same question in his guise as the gardener.  He’s standing right there, so he’s obviously heard her first answer.  But he asks again, “Why are you weeping?”  This time she doesn’t bother answering at all, because she thinks this man is only a gardener.  She moves right past his question to what she wants to know:  What have you done with Jesus’ body? But what would have happened instead if she had taken the time to answer his question?  What would have happened if she had pondered why she was weeping?  Read the full sermon here:

by Pamela M. Barz on March 25th, 2018

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"Black Panther and the story of Palm Sunday are ultimately both about power and suffering – how we use our power to respond to a suffering world.   Do we let our hearts break open or do we keep them closed?  Do we place ourselves in the midst of the suffering or above it?"  Read the whole sermon here:

by Pamela M. Barz on March 18th, 2018

"Pay attention.  When you listen deeply to someone, so deeply that you feel what they are feeling, so deeply that you are not thinking about what you will say next but only holding them in your love, you are praying.  When you feel grateful for a kindness offered to you or for a luxury or privilege you enjoy, you are praying.  When you regret something hurtful you said or did – or something helpful you might have said or done but didn’t, you are praying.  When you are walking on the beach and stop to marvel at the power of the waves or the intricate whorls of a shell, or at the process which ground rocks to sand, you are praying.    You are paying attention to Life with a capital “L”.  Read the whole sermon here:

by Pamela M. Barz on March 11th, 2018

"Revelation is not sealed."   That insight today lies at the core of our good news:  each of us must cultivate that inner voice, that communion with sheer silence, that relationship with God – whatever word you use.  The name doesn’t matter.  What matters is that truth not be limited or shut off because we didn’t hear it, didn’t understand it, or didn’t communicate it.  Truth speaks through us.  Read the whole sermon here:

by First Parish on March 1st, 2018

Read about the Blue Boat Coffeehouse, Stewardship, the Community Book discussion, the Unity dinner, and the new knitting/fiber arts group:  http://conta.cc/2t6S08j

by First Parish on February 11th, 2018

"I rejoice in giving to this church because this church is doing things I rejoice in!"  For our annual Stewardship Sunday, Ann Svensen and Alma Morrison reflected on why and how they rejoice in First Parish.  Read their sermon here:

"A Charlie Brown Christmas" "Church is a place where we get to practice being human" "Elizabeth Goudge" "Hope is the thing with feathers" "I Worried" by Mary Oliver "Live to see clearly and the light will come /To you and as you need it." "Love is the doctrine of this church and service is its law" "Pilgrim's Inn" "Teach us to number our days." "This Little Light of Mine" "We shall be a city upon a hill" "original relation to the universe" "those people" #UULent 1st principe 200th anniversary 2016 Presidentail politics 2016 Presidential election 2017 Presidential Inauguration 500th anniversary 7th Principle 95 Theses A Wrinkle in Time A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in Abundance Advent African American Alcott All Souls Day All Souls Alliance of Unitarian and Other Liberal Christian Women Amalfi Annual Report sermon Ascension Day At-one-ment Balance egg at Spring Equinox Balance Ballad of Gilligan's Island to tune of Amazing Grace Beacon Beltane Betty Williams Bible Black Panther Blake covenant Bonnie Prince Charlie Boston Brett Kavanaugh Canvass Capuchin Crypt Casablanca Channing Charles Chauncy Charles Darwin Unitarian Charles Darwin Charles M. Schulz Charlie Brown Christmas Eve sermon Christmas Eve Christmas star Christmas Community Day of the Dead Democracy Duty Earth Day Easter Gospel of Mark Easter story Easter Elizabeth Blackwell Epiphany Esther Everybody Comes to Rick's Extravagance Ferry Beach Fifth Principle First Parish Ladies' Sewing Circle First Sunday in Lent Forgiveness Frankenstein Gilligan's Island Girl before a Mirror God Gospel Gratitude Halloween sermon Halloween Hanukkah Happiness Harry Potter Heroes Honor Hospitality Hurricane Harvey Isaiah 40: 1-4 Italy Jesus' baptism Jesus Jo March Jo's Boys John 20 John Lothropp John Winthrop Julia Ward Howe Kindness Koran Le Chambon Lenten practice Lenten sermon Lent Linus Little Men Little Women Lord of the Dance Louisa May Alcott Love once again break our hearts open wide Lucy van Pelt Luke 2: 10-14 Luke 2: 10 Luke 2:14 MLK Sunday sermon Mairead Corrigan March for Life March sisters Marcia McFee Marie Curie Mark 14: 3-9 Mark Martin Luther King Martin Luther Mary Magdalene Mary Shelley Matthew 6:27 May Day Meditation Meg Murry Membership Sunday sermon Millie Dresselhaus Mother's Day Mothers' Day Mystic Seaport Museum National Airlines flight 2511 New Year's sermon No seed ever sees the flower. Old Story of Salvation Oliver Sacks Origin of Species Pageant Palm Sunday Parker Palmer Passover Peanuts Gang Pearl Merrill Pentecost Pilgrims Pope Francis Prince of Peace Protestant Reformation Psalm 51 Psalm 90 Purim Puritans and Ten Commandments Puritans RE News Rachel Carson Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm Religious Education OWL Youth Group RE Teachers Religious Education Richard III Rod Serling Samuel Longfellow Scituate Scripture Separatist Seventh Principle Shavuot Shonda Rimes Year of Yes Silent Spring Snowflake Fair Sophia Fahs Spirit Spring Equinox St. Valentine Star Wars Stewardship sermon Stewardship Sunday School Super Bowl Sunday 2015 sermon Sydney Carter Thanksgiving sermon Thanksgiving The Brain Center at Whipple's The Conversation Project The Prodigal Son The Pursuit of Happiness Thoreau sermon Three kings Transcendentalists Tree of Life Synagoge Trump presidency Trump Truth Twilight Zone UU Lent UU good news UU view of Jesus UU women's organizations UULent UU Ubuntu Unitaarian Universalist Unitarian Louisa May Alcott Unitarian Univeresalist Unitarian Universalist Advent Unitarian Universalist Ascension Day Unitarian Universalist Christmas Unitarian Universalist Easter sermon Unitarian Universalist Thanksgiving sermon Unitarian Universalist Transcendentalism Unitarian Universalist covenants Unitarian Universalist liturgical year Unitarian Universalist sermon for Rosh Hashanah Unitarian Universalist sermon for Yom Kippur Unitarian Universalist sermon for the Days of Awe Unitarian Universalist sermon Unitarian Universalist women's history Unitarian Universalist women's organizations Unitarian Universalist Unitarian Women's Alliance Unitarian women's organizations Unitarian Unity Club Universalism Universalist Untiarian Universalist sermon Valentine's Day sermon Valentine's Day Vernal Equinox Veterans' Day sermon Via Negativa Walden sermon Wangari Maathai Water Communion What Is a UU? What Unitarian Universalists believe Why do bad things happen Witch-hunt Witches Women's March Wonder World War I Christmas truce You are the light of the world addiction afterlife angels atheist baby dedication ban books birds black liberation theology blessed bones brevity of life bridging divides broken heart calling can worrying make your life longer? candles canvass sermon change child dedication church covenants church clay bird college reunion cosmic costume courage covfefe dance darkness death diet diversity do Unitarian Universalists celebrate Christmas? don't believe in God drunk from wells I did not dig economic inequality election end-of-life environment evil evolution faith fear of death fear feeding ourselves and others finances fire communion sermon flowers and joy follow football and the church football sermon frameworks freedom funding gardening and joy giving good graitude grief happy history hopes for 2015 hope hubris human nature hygge immortality inequality inequity inherent worth and dignity journey joy cometh in the morning joy judging justice kairos kite flying kites language life changes light love lucky magi masks meaning in life mission modern-day Transcendentalism monsters mortality new reformation nostalgia nurturing spirituality othering others paradigm shift paying attention peace dove peace perspective pledging polarization political divide post-election sermon potluck suppers power and privilege praise prayer pray priesthood of all believers prosperity gospel racism randomness reason regrets response resurrection risk ritual role of women in Unitarian church sabbath and climate change sacred time security blanket self-acceptance self-esteem sermon on control sermon on fear sermon on fulness of life sermon on worry sermon seven deadly sins seven generations shooting skeleton slavery social justice sabbath sorrow spiritual practice spiritual response to election spiritual thirst spirituality spirituals stars star statistics stories story substance abuse suffering sunrise take something on for Lent talking about death thanks the church in the 21st century the end of work the woman with the ointment theology time transforming church trees I did not plant trust umami spirituality understanding universe vision vulnerabaility vulnerablility we aren't in control weeping wind wishes for end-of-life care witch hats worship preferences worship styles worship