The Union Church in Waban
Friday Updates, April 1, 2022
This Sunday
Fifth Sunday in Lent - Commitment Sunday
Hybrid Service (In-person and Online)
April 3rd,10:00 a.m.
Our Mission Team will take the lead in worship on this day - sharing stories of our partners in ministry and what we are learning about our neighbors as we serve. We will break bread in communion and prepare to dedicate our giving for the coming year for the Annual Campaign.

Our Lenten Prayer Station, "God's Doors Are Open to All," will be available. Daily devotional practice cards are still available for pick-up and on our Facebook page.

Pastor Amy will lead children and youth in planning for our Palm Sunday service during a brief Sunday School before we return to the sanctuary for Communion.

Reception Time in-person has returned as we enjoy visiting with each other following worship. We added a laptop to reception so we can be together there too. We look forward to seeing you!

To join Sunday Worship at 10:00 a.m. on Zoom:  
Zoom Link: HERE
Meeting ID: 832 2059 8969
Passcode: 458322
Dial in only: 1 646 558 8656 

The bulletin is available HERE
To connect to Sunday Worship or to any of our online offerings,
you may also go to our website at www.ucw.org.  
Church Matters
Where Hope Thrives
The Union Church in Waban Annual Stewardship Campaign 
Throughout the pandemic, the Union Church has been a community of return, a place of homecoming. And it’s also a community of sending, a place that commissions us as agents of God’s love and grace. Christianity was made for this: building bridges of homecoming and commissioning, sending and return, welcoming the stranger and being sent forth to visit the sick and imprisoned. The Union Church is made for it, too, and we are made to do this together. Together we offer our skills, our hopes, our ideas, our money, and our hearts to answer God’s call.

Thank you for your pledge to the 2022-2023 Stewardship Campaign. 
Together we ensure that the Union Church is Where Hope Thrives!
For details on how your contributions foster our thriving, along with information on pledging guidelines please go here or click on the image above.
A link to our 2022-23 online pledge form is available on our website homepage at www.ucw.org or by clicking on the image above.
We conclude our Stewardship campaign receiving pledges this Sunday, April 3rd
Thanks for your generous support!
Phase Forward Updates
Masking Guidance for Union Church in Waban

Recommendation: Our indoor mask requirements for general church building use is lifted. During worship and choir rehearsals masks will still be required because singing remains a high spread activity.

In response to the guidance from the CDC as well as our own state and local changes in masking policy, the Phase Forward Team at Union Church is recommending this change. The vaccination rate of 88% in Newton and improved therapies, keep the hospitalization rate low even though the transmission rate is high. Outside of worship where we enjoy singing together, we encourage people to make their own decisions about whether to mask, honoring what they feel is best for them and the wider community. While we support relaxing our masking policy, it is with the understanding that it will result in more transmission. For most individuals this will be a nuisance but not too risky. For some individuals this will still put their health at risk so take care to discuss in small groups whether to unmask.

For General Building Use:
Masks will be optional inside our building, unless otherwise stated for specific events. Groups using our building may choose to continue to require masks. Masking will be strongly encouraged for large group activities and events that involve group singing.
  
For Union Church Events:
  • Masks will be required during worship services in the Sanctuary and when singing in larger groups (e.g., Choir rehearsal).
  • Worship leaders may lower their masks at their discretion. 
  • Those attending other Union Church programs or meetings in person may choose to mask or not mask.  
  • We strongly encourage those who are unvaccinated, especially children under 5, to continue masking at all indoor events. Union Church’s Staff will continue masking while caring for young children indoors. 
  • We strongly encourage vaccination and boosters for everyone who is eligible.
  • Please stay home if you have been diagnosed with COVID or are not feeling well, as an act of care for yourself and others.
  • Plan outdoor activities when the weather allows.

We encourage respect, compassion, and thoughtful consideration in all circumstances, as we make our way through uncharted territory.
Upcoming Sundays & Gatherings
Sunday, April 10th - Palm Sunday and Walk Through Holy Week
Our youth and children will help us enter Holy Week by leading worship. They will tell the story, in age appropriate ways, that began with Jesus' entry into Jerusalem on the day we recognize as Palm Sunday through to the events that led to his death on the cross.
Maundy Thursday: April 14th, 7:00 p.m. (Hybrid)
Gather in the Sanctuary and on Zoom to hear/see the story of foot-washing, the sharing of the Lord’s Supper and the Tenebrae Service. For those on Zoom, please bring a cup and bread so that we may partake of the Lord's Supper together. As we move into the Tenebrae portion of the service, those on Zoom will be invited to light a candle as the night falls, so please gather a candle (if you have one) with you as well.
Easter Sunday, April 17th
Two Services and an Easter Egg Hunt
Sunrise Service at 6:00 a.m.
Early risers, join us for this informal service as we watch the swans and turtles wake up and greet the Easter sunrise with songs and shouts of Alleluia! Pastor Amy and family lead this service. We'll meet in the Wellesley Office Park, behind the building at 45 Williams Street (The sign says 45 Wellesley Office Park, click to see a map - it's on the opposite side of the Charles River from Quinobequin Rd.)After you turn onto 45 Williams, go under the building and look to your right - you'll see an entrance to the Charles River Reservoir. Park and walk down the path until you find Crowley's Landing. The path is fully wheelchair and stroller accessible. Please call Pastor Amy's cell (617-938-8112) if you have trouble finding us.  

10:00 a.m. Worship (Hybrid)
At the 10:00 a.m. worship service, we will introduce a flowering of the cross practice as well as receive the gift of special music, renewing our Alleluias and setting our Lenten Prayer Station welcome door wide open.
11:00 a.m. Easter Egg Hunt!
easter_egg_hunt.jpg
Immediately following worship we invite children and youth of all ages to gather outside for our wonderful annual Easter Egg Hunt! Any older teens or adults who would like to help the Easter Bunny hide eggs, please let Pastor Amy know (amy@ucw.org)
Can You Donate Candy or Stickers for the Easter Egg Hunt?
The Easter Bunny has lots of eggs, but could use your help with donations of candy (individually-wrapped and no nuts please!) or stickers (or other small treats) that we can use to fill the eggs. Donations can be left outside Pastor Amy's office. Thank you!!
Adult Formation and Gatherings
UCW Book Group
Tuesday, April 26th at 7:30 p.m.
Tattoos on the Heart
The Power of Boundless Compassion
by Gregory Boyle
Please join us on Tuesday, April 26th at 7:30 p.m. for our next book group meeting. This month we will be reading Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion by Gregory Boyle. You will find a zoom link and sign-in information below. If you have any questions, please reach out to Alan Cody (almorrow@aol.com)

Zoom Link: HERE
Meeting ID: 832 4667 4155
Passcode: 431699
Dial in: 1 646 558 8656
Fascinators for Easter Sunday!
Way back before the pandemic, some UCW members wore fascinators (clip on Easter hats) on Easter Sunday! We particularly remember our beloved Bev Hadley wearing one, in her signature light purple. 

As we hope to be back celebrating this Easter, we invite you to wear a fascinator (or an Easter hat, or whatever suits your fancy!) this year! BUT because of the supply chain challenges, you'll need to order early! 

Word in the church is that Etsy is a great place to buy them ... you can also get them on Amazon ...

Looking forward to seeing your colors!
Advocates for Racial Justice
Segregated By Design (In-person and Zoom)
Mon., April 11th, 7:00 – 8:15 p.m.
Fellowship Hall, Second Church Newton, 60 Highland St, West Newton

If you missed our two recent film nights, here’s another opportunity. In observance of Fair Housing Month (April), Congregation Dorshei Tzedek is inviting Union Church and other congregations in the emergent Newton Interfaith Housing Coalition to…
Come participate in a conversation about how housing and zoning policy drives residential racial segregation in Newton and throughout the Boston area—and about current opportunities for real change. Program:

  1. Screening of Segregated By Design, the 17-minute documentary version of Richard Rothstein’s The Color of Law
  2. Presentation by Henry Korman, General Counsel of 2Life Communities and former member of the Newton Fair Housing Committee and the Newton Housing Partnership
  3. Presentation by Shayok Chakraborty, GBIO Organizer
  4. Presentation Kathleen Hobson (UCW, Engine 6) about the Newton Interfaith Housing Coalition
You can attend this event either in person or on Zoom, but advance registration is required.
For that go: HERE
If you would like to learn more about ARJ activities at the Union Church please reach out to Nancy Zollers (dr.nancy.zollers@gmail.com ) or Kathleen Hobson (khobson65@gmail.com).
Mission & Service
Newton Freedge: Urgent Need!
The Union Church in Waban is a Freedge partner responsible for helping connect with local businesses, stock, and monitor this needed local resource two Saturdays a month. We are in urgent need of volunteers in the coming weeks.

The work is easy and rewarding, with multiple slots throughout the day. Despite Newton’s image as an affluent suburb, too many of our neighbors struggle to put food on their tables. The Newton Freedge is one way we can help. A free, 24/7 outdoor refrigerator and pantry, the Freedge provides free food and personal supplies to anyone who needs them. 

To learn more, contact Vinita at vinita.leslie@gmail.com, or sign up below.
Union Church Freedge Sign-up: HERE
Children, Youth & Families
The Lenten Journey for Families - Sunday Mornings
We hope you and your kids will join us as we walk together through the six-week season of Lent toward the light and hope of Easter. Below is a full calendar of each Sunday in Lent. As gathering becomes safer as Covid numbers decrease and as the weather becomes nicer, we hope to offer even more gatherings for families and youth, so please stay tuned!
This Sunday - Fifth Sunday in Lent
  • Join Pastor Amy for a time of connection, hope and joy
  • We'll remember our furry neighbors in God's creation and may go outside, so please dress accordingly :)
  • Kids will return to the Sanctuary for Communion
  • We'll also remember, in child-appropriate ways, the story of Holy Week, and begin looking at plans for our Palm Sunday child-and-youth-led service. This service, much like our Christmas Pageant, allows our kids to led worship and share God's story with the congregation. We hope your kids will join us! If you can't be here this Sunday but would like to participate, please contact Pastor Amy (amy@ucw.org)
Middle School Youth Group
Amazing (Lenten) Race - TONIGHT!
Friday April 1st, 6:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
It's April Fools Day, but this is no joke! Middle Schoolers are invited to an awesome night of fun and connection. We'll have our own Amazing Race throughout the church, and do some preparing for our Palm Sunday Walk Through Holy Week service along the way. Middle School families should have received an Evite in their emails last week, but please be in touch with Pastor Amy with any questions (amy@ucw.org). See you there!
High School Youth Groups
Thank You for Your Donations and Service to CityReach!
We're so grateful for all the donations of clothing, and for the amazing presence of so many youth and adult volunteers for CityReach this year. We hope to share more over the coming weeks, but spent a very meaningful 24 hours learning from and serving with our unhoused siblings in Boston. Please ask our teens about their experience!
Next Exploring Our Faith Meeting
This Sunday, April 3rd!

Our next Exploring Our Faith Gathering is A BBQ THIS SUNDAY, April 3rd, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thank you to David Spertner for hosting this awesome event! EOF and older High Schoolers, and mentors are invited! We'll talk about our upcoming June Mission Trip. Contact Pastor Amy for the address if you didn't receive an email.

For more information about our calendar for High Schoolers and our Exploring Our Faith program, please click on the button below.

Pastoral Care
Pastoral Care Connections
During this time of transition, please know that your church is here for you. Please don't hesitate to reach out to Revs. Wendy Vander Hart or Amy Clark Feldman for prayer or pastoral support:

  • Pastor Amy's email is amy@ucw.org, and her cell phone for calls or texts is 617-938-8112.
  • Pastor Wendy's email is seniorpastor@ucw.org and her office phone is 617-965-3893
Note: Both of our pastors take Mondays off as a day of rest and Sabbath. If you are in need of urgent pastoral support on this coming Monday,, you can reach out to Pastor Wendy, who will be available for emergencies.

Sunday Sign-Ups
Sunday Reception Sign-Up
We are restarting our after-service reception!
Please follow the link below and review the available slots to sign up. As we slowly come back to "new normal" the numbers of those attending reception will fluctuate from 25-40. Thank you!

Reception Sign-up: HERE
Scripture Reader Sign-Up
If you are joining our Sunday worship, please consider signing up as a Scripture Reader for any of our upcoming services.

Scripture Reader Sign-up: HERE
Our Covenant

We, the members of The Union Church in Waban, true to our founding principle of being an inclusive church, covenant together to nourish and to sustain in our common life and practice a fully welcoming and affirming church for all persons. Welcoming all persons who seek to join with us in a commitment to love God and our neighbors, affirming the inclusive love of Jesus, we are open to all, without regard to race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, nationality, ability or economic circumstance. We invite all to full participation in our worship, membership, leadership and life of this church.