First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church • 330 First Parish Rd, Scituate MA 02066

Posts with the tag “unitarian”

I Believe in Hope: Longfellow's "Christmas Bells"
by FPUU Admin on November 29th, 2020
Longfellow wrote "Christmas Bells" after taking a walk on Christmas Day 1863 while he pondered themessage of the bells chiming from the church steeples of Boston and Cambridge.1863. You know from that date that the Civil War was on Longfellow’s mind as he took thatwalk.... read the rest of the sermon here:...  Read More
The Gospel According to Scooby-Doo - Halloween Sermon 2020
by FPUU Admin on October 25th, 2020
“Scooby Dooby Doo! Where are you? We need some help from you now.” That song summonedchildren along with the detective dog and his human companions to 25 episodes of “Scooby-DooWhere Are You?” Unlike other theme songs which tell us something about the characters we’reabout to see, this song tells us nothing. It doesn’t even tell us that Scooby-Doo is a dog. Instead itsets us down in the middle of ...  Read More
The Struggle and the Joy - June 14, 2020
by FPUU Admin on June 17th, 2020
Pamela Barz reflects on sustaining ourselves for the long struggle for justice - with joy.  Read the sermon here: Struggle and the Joy - June 14, 2020.pdf...  Read More
Toward the Light - Sunday June 7, 2020
by FPUU Admin on June 10th, 2020
"We come to church to practice the harder job of love.   Love takes others.  And here we find others committed to the practice.  Our worship is just the start of our practice.  And so if we’re going to lean in so that love may flow out, I’d like to invite you to think about church differently.  It’s not a time or place you pop into when you need to be fed.  It’s a commitment to a practice.  We sho...  Read More
Love's Twist - Sunday March 29, 2020
by FPUU Admin on March 29th, 2020
"Love will not stop disease nor protect our bodies from what may come.  We are mortal.  But love does offer our spirits a softer journey over the road we travel, cushioning us from the fear for the future which makes the present worse.  Love’s twist, like the Mobius strip, rounds our lives into a wholeness comprehending all.  Let us rest in this love whatever the coming days may bring."  Read the ...  Read More
Spiritual or Religious? How 'bout Both? - Sunday March 8, 2020
by FPUU Admin on March 9th, 2020
Spirit without religion is like breath without a body.  It’s like light without a refractor.  But by religion I don’t mean a system of doctrines to which one must assent.  By religion I mean the ways we try to make meaning.  Read the whole sermon here:   ...  Read More
Turning Toward Love - Little Women - Feb. 9, 2020
by FPUU Admin on February 12th, 2020
If you do any research into Louisa May Alcott’s novel Little Women the question which comes up over and over is “Why?”  Why has a book about four young white women in 19th century Concord, Massachusetts, continued to be read and admired for 150 years?  It has been translated into over 50 languages, adapted for plays and movies, including the most recent, directed by Greta Guerwig and up for 6 Osca...  Read More
A Delightful New Year - January 5, 2020
by FPUU Admin on January 8th, 2020
With the news of fires raging in Australia and the assassination of General Soleimani in Iraq, I wondered if a sermon on keeping Christmas in our hearts was still what I needed to say to today, still what you might need to hear.  But I think it is.  For the Christmas spirit Scrooge found, the Christmas spirit we need to hold onto, isn’t about jollity and games and feasting, though those may be par...  Read More
Bah! Humbug! - December 1, 2019
by FPUU Admin on December 4th, 2019
“Marley was dead: to begin with,” Dickens opens A Christmas Carol.  “Dead these seven years,” Scrooge says a little later.  Seven times he says that in the first stave of this carol in prose, seven years dead exactly this Christmas Eve - but seven is a magic number and Marley is not as dead as he seems..... Read the rest of the sermon here:...  Read More
The Upside Down - October 27, 2019
by FPUU Admin on October 27th, 2019
Today in my annual Halloween sermon, we’re exploring what wisdom and examples the Neflix series Stranger Things might offer us.  Every year I choose a topic thinking it will be funny and campy, and every year I find the topic offers a serious connection to our world.  This year is no different.  For in many ways we are living in a Stranger Things world.  Read the rest of the sermon here: ...  Read More
Practice Resurrection! - October 20, 2019
by FPUU Admin on October 23rd, 2019
"This idea of living in an I-Thou relation with the earth and all its inhabitants is at the heart of our Unitarian Universalist faith.  Our Unitarian ancestors broke away from the traditional Christians of their time because of their belief in the inherent goodness of humankind.  In this church that happened in 1825.  Our Transcendentalist ancestors enlarged that goodness to encompass the natural ...  Read More
A Time to Turn - October 6, 2019
by FPUU Admin on October 6th, 2019
"Confessing our sins is not a “woe is me” action; it is not an act of self-flagellation.  It is a clear-eyed assessment of our power to help and heal and make whole ourselves and the world, of the ways we have not taken up the power which is ours, and of the ways we will move into our power more fully in the new year ahead.  Confessing our sins is an act of hope, promise, and strength.  It demonst...  Read More
Communion with Ourselves - Sunday September 29
by FPUU Admin on October 2nd, 2019
One of the main contributions of our Unitarian ancestors to the Western Christian tradition was to connect the awe that one feels in nature with religion.  Before the Transcendentalists, Christianity focused on the largeness of God and the smallness of humankind.  ...  It took the Transcendentalists to name that sense of awe one feels in nature as also part and particle of the divine.  They brough...  Read More
"Can You Hear the Stars?" - August 25, 2019
by FPUU Admin on August 28th, 2019
On Sunday August 25, Pamela Barz led the congregation in a reflection process of the poem The Silence of the Stars by David Wagoner.  You can do your own reflection on it here: ...  Read More
We Are the Parade - Easter Sunday April 21, 2019
by FPUU Admin on April 22nd, 2019
Read the rest of the sermon here: ...  Read More
In Debt to Life - April 7, 2019
by FPUU Admin on April 8th, 2019
This parable and its call to interdependence is too important, too radical, to let it be interpreted by those who would tame it.  Our series on the parables ends today, but it is important that we continue to look at these stories.  Whatever we may believe about them, they continue to be used to shape our society, so we must continue to voice our understanding of the challenge these stories offer ...  Read More
Must We Be Fair? - March 24, 2019
by FPUU Admin on March 27th, 2019
What does J.B. Priestley's drama An Inspector Calls have to do with a story Jesus told about how to live a life of deep fulfillment?  Read Pamela Barz's sermon to find out:...  Read More
Waiting to Grow - March 10, 2019
by FPUU Admin on March 10th, 2019
"Jesus was a storyteller.  He knew that the concepts he was trying to talk about – the realm of God, the kingdom of heaven, the fullness of love and justice among all people on earth – were so big, so deep, so wide, that you couldn’t pin them down in a didactic explanation.  He could only offer glimpses of the truths he wanted to convey through metaphor and simile.  He was a poet in prose."  R...  Read More
The Joy of Friendship - February 24, 2019
by FPUU Admin on February 24th, 2019
 When it comes to love, the English language is impoverished.  We have one word to describe our feelings for our significant other, our child, and our best friend – not to mention our favorite activity, vegetable, or vacation spot!  The ancient Greeks had 6 words:  eros – “romantic love”; storge – “love for family”; agape – “love for everyone”; philautia – “love of self;” and philia – “deep friend...  Read More
The Warmth of Joy - February 10, 2019
by FPUU Admin on February 10th, 2019
"How would it change how we understand ourselves and one another, how we understand our world, if things weren’t divided into good and bad, before and after, reward and punishment, but just all that is with joy suffusing everything?"  Read the entire sermon here:   ...  Read More
This Delight-Filled Universe - February 3, 2019
by FPUU Admin on February 3rd, 2019
Joy is not of our own creating nor can it come when called.  Joy bursts on us when we do not expect it – in response to a chord of music, the sight of a soaring bird, connecting to another’s heart.  Unlike happiness which comes from an awareness of ourselves and our surroundings, in joy we lose the boundary of self and merge with the music, the bird and the sky, the snow-lit world, the oth...  Read More
"Do Unitarian Universalists Celebrate Christmas?" - November 25, 2018
by FPUU Admin on November 26th, 2018
“Do Unitarian Universalists celebrate Christmas?”  Do people ask you this question?  They certainly ask me.  Usually it’s somewhere between Thanksgiving and New Year’s – I’m talking to someone who knows a little about our tradition but not much, and he wonders if I’m celebrating what he’s celebrating.  I always say “yes,” but the answer’s not really that simple.  We may be observing the same holy ...  Read More
Frankenstein, the Monster, and Us - October 28, 2018
by FPUU Admin 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 ...  Read More
Healing the Heart of Democracy - October 14, 2018
by FPUU Admin 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 ...  Read More
All Souls Day service
by FPUU Admin on November 5th, 2017
On All Souls Day we remember the love which connects us, living and dead.  Read the whole service here: ...  Read More
Talk about Fear! - October 30, 2016
by FPUU Admin on October 30th, 2016
Rod Serling's stories gave the women and men of the late 20th century a way to see their fears and talk about them.  Were you worried about the pressure to conform, the prospect of vigilante violence, the power of greed, society’s emphasis on beauty, or the down-side of self-reliance?  There’s an episode for that.  The stories give words to nameless fears and bring people together in naming and di...  Read More
What Is a UU?
by FPUU Admin on October 7th, 2014
We believe that each of us is loved and lovable; that we receive that love from many hands and gain understanding of it from many voices; and that the purpose of our lives is to pass that love on to others.  This is our good news.   To read the whole sermon, click here.  ...  Read More





"A Charlie Brown Christmas" "Church is a place where we get to practice being human" "Elizabeth Goudge" "Hope is the thing with feathers" "I Don't Want to be the Strong Female Lead" "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." "The Silence of the Stars" "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 Christmas Carol A Wrinkle in Time A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in Abundance Adam Advent African American Alcott All Souls Day All Souls Alliance of Unitarian and Other Liberal Christian Women Amalfi Amy-Jill Levine Amy An Inspector Calls Anne Robertson 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 Beth Betty Williams Bible Black Panther Blake covenant Bonnie Prince Charlie Boston Braiding Sweetgrass Brett Kavanaugh Brit Marling Bryan Stevenson COVID19 Canvass Capuchin Crypt Casablanca Channing Charles Chauncy Charles Darwin Unitarian Charles Darwin Charles Dickens Charles M. 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