We Commit Ourselves and Our Resources to 
Nurture the Spirit, Grow in Community, and Help Heal the World.
ONLINE Worship Service:

January 10, 2021
10:00 am

Coming of Age
Reverend Christina Sillari & Toben Cooney-Callnan
Join Zoom Meeting:
(This link will work for all upcoming online services.)
Meeting ID: 387 790 755
One tap mobile
+19294362866,,387790755# US (New York)

Call in as early as 9:30 am
to say hello to other First Parish friends.

Or watch the livestream service on our Facebook page.
Upcoming Online Worship Services
Jan. 17 | 10am
From Courage
 to Resilience
Rev. Christina Sillari
Jan. 24 | 10am
Druid Spirituality
Paul Ridon
Jan. 31 | 10am
Envisioning Our Future
Rev. Christina Sillari
Homelessness in Portland
January 10 | 11 am
Following Service on Zoom

Join Rev. Christina & Marcy Makinen immediately after the service this Sunday in a coffee hour break out room to discuss a First Parish unified response to homelessness in Portland. Join the Zoom service as usual, and stay on for this important discussion!
 Pastoral Care
Breakout Room
Sunday Mornings after Worship
All are welcome to join a confidential pastoral care breakout room each Sunday after worship. Please send a chat message to the worship tech person during the service if you would like to join. A member of the Pastoral Care Team will be present with an open heart. Any questions or concerns please contact team leader Judy Micoleau:  judymicoleau299@gmail.com.

What's Going on in RE?
Toben Cooney-Callnan, RE Director

Grades 1-7: Zoom Meetings most Sundays 9-9:45am
Grades 10-12: Youth Group Sundays 6-7:15pm

Religious Exploration Updated Calendar
The RE Calendar has been updated to reflect our shared classes with the UU Church of Brunswick. Our Online RE Calendar is the best place to go for the most up to date information on what is happening each week in the RE Program.

If you would like more information about our programming for children and youth please contact Toben at dre@fisrtparishportland.org.
Hope painting created by Preble St. client.
Preble Street
Wellness Shelter

On Tuesday, 1/5, the City of Portland Planning Board voted to approve the conditional use application for the Preble Street Wellness Shelter! 

Thanks to the following members of First Parish who testified, wrote letters, made phone calls and joined in meetings in support of our unhoused neighbors:

Anne Heminway, Carl Capello, Cate Lund, Claire Cowan, Corene Wickenheiser, Jake Kulaw, Jane and Cliff Hoover, Jeff Logan, Jenn McAdoo, Joan Stanton, Judy Micoleau, Karen Wentworth, Kathy Vezina, Kris Minister, Marcy Makinen, Martha Burke, Michael Pancook, Nancy Flagg, Sue Lippert, Susan Cook, Susan Payne, Tricia Naddaff and Val Blais.
Sunday Plate Needs Help! 

Sunday Plate donations are currently less than half of pre-pandemic levels. Weekly donations are an important revenue source keeping our church on sound financial footing. Even though we can’t gather in person, there are still ways to contribute during or after Sunday worship. Click here to learn all the Ways to Give to First Parish.
Art Auction Fundraiser

Given the COVID pandemic, First Parish is planning an Online Art Auction as our single fundraiser for this fiscal year. We plan to hold the auction in the May-June timeframe. We need 10 – 15 volunteers to pull this ambitious project together. If you have any experience organizing or participating in an online auction – or are just willing to roll your sleeves and join in on the fun - we can use your help. Here are a few of the tasks we need help with:

  • Developing a ‘theme’ for our auction
  • Building a timeline and task list
  • Creating a publicity plan to get the word out
  • Recruiting artists
  • Recruiting sponsors
  • Designing & implementing auction website – we are using Excelevents
  • Posting artist’s photos, samples of their work, and bios on the website
  • Organizing payments and delivery of artist’s works

Please contact Bill Adams if you would like to be a part of this important fundraiser for First Parish! wadams5071@gmail.com or 207-939-8766.
Pastoral Care Calls
& Office Hours
with Reverend Christina
Mondays | 9 am - 12 pm
Tuesdays | 2-5 pm

Reverend Christina will be holding Pastoral Care calls and Office Hours for meetings by phone or Zoom every Monday & Tuesday for members and leaders of First Parish. Please email the Office to schedule a call.
Breathing and Meditation 
with Reverend Christina
Wednesdays | 7:30-8:30 am | Zoom 

The practice of pranayama is essential to a calm mind, a healthy body, and a free spirit. Through breathwork, kriyas, mudras and sutras we prepare for silence and stillness. Free to members. $10.00 per class for non-members.
Poetry Hour with Reverend Christina
Thursdays | 8-9 am | Zoom

We listen to poems, reflect on them, and share how they touch our beings.
Some of us have begun to write poems. All are welcome. Free to members. $10.00 per class for non-members. https://us02web.zoom.us/j/250298315
Peaceful Harbor Sangha
Sundays | 6:30 - 8:00 pm | Online

Peaceful Harbor Sangha meets weekly for shared Buddhist practice. Meetings include sitting meditation, walking meditation, dharma reading and discussion. Come experience the calm in the storm! Meetings are now held on Zoom, and all are welcome; donations are gratefully accepted but not required. To receive the Zoom link contact Susannah Ristine at ristinesusannah@gmail.com.  
Wayside Pulpit
Laurie Hasty, Membership Coordinator
Staff News

Please welcome Marge Stockford as the Interim Office Administrator until our new staff person is hired. Marge will be answering email, returning calls, sending the weekly eNews, and so much more! You can reach Marge by email at office@firstparishportland.org or by phone at 773-5747. Thank you, Marge!

A big shout-out goes to the members of the First Parish Personnel Team: Lois Winter, Sue Veligor, Steve Jenks and Richard Burbank. They have been hard at work screening candidates and conducting interviews for our next Congregational Administrator. Many thanks for this important service to First Parish!
Church for EveryBody Project Update
Marge Stockford, CFE Project Manager

The staging at the back of our building has been removed, revealing the attractive brickwork, and spaces for windows at the entry and up the stairway (photo above left). You can now see where the Community Dinner dishes will be handed in and out of the kitchen (photo above right), and envision the three new sinks and dishwasher!  The slab for the elevator foundation has been poured, and we are hoping the elevator will be installed soon.  Learn more about the project here. Photos by Moe Blanchard.
Hope for Spring 2021
Rev. Christina Sillari

The Unitarian Universalist Association recommends that we do not return to in-person Sunday worship until May 2021. I feel this is very wise. The great state of Maine has one of the lowest rates of COVID cases in the country, but these cases are on the rise. We have also seen serious outbreaks from a few religious gatherings. As a faith community with social values, it is important that we not only consider ourselves during these times, but all of our neighbors, especially the most vulnerable among us. We will soon share with you how we determine the most responsible pathway forward during these unprecedented times.
Committee on Ministry 

The Committee on Ministry (COM) assists the minister and the congregation in promoting the well-being of the congregation’s ministry. Should a member have an inquiry or feedback pertaining to The Reverend’s ministry at First Parish, please contact a member of the COM team: Andrew Bloom (ABLOOM@maine.rr.com), Jen Caswell (hfcjdc@gmail.com), Bruce Carver (brucedcarver@gmail.com), and/or Tom Rogers (trogers1@me.com). 
COVID + Construction:
Getting in Touch with First Parish

With the combined challenges of COVID and the CFE construction project, business is anything but normal at First Parish! It may take a few days to return phone messages; email is the best way to reach all First Parish staff. Please keep in mind that Scott, Toben and Laurie work part-time, and will return messages when they are able. Thank you for your patience and understanding!
425 Congress Street Portland, Maine 04101   207-773-5747  

 Nurture the Spirit, Grow in Community 
and Help Heal the World