We are the First Religious Society, a Unitarian Universalist congregation in Newburyport, Massachusetts.  We're glad you're here. We aspire to be a welcoming and inclusive community that encourages spiritual growth as we strive for truth and meaning and serve the social and spiritual needs of our larger community.

November 19, 2017

Sunday at 10:30am – Service of Thanksgiving – “Unlikely Gratitude” – Rev. Susan Milnor.  “Blessed are those who see beautiful things in humble places,” said the Neo-Impressionist painter Camille Pissarro. We are well aware of what people commonly express gratitude for at this time of year, ranging from family to home and health. But what unlikely events, people, and delights grace our lives? During our Moment for All Ages, we will celebrate a sunflower seed ritual. Kim Dowling shares her Journey of Faith.   

Racial Justice Task Force forming

The issues of white supremacy and racism remain central points in our national debate and have, indeed, become issues within Unitarian Universalism itself. Where do we stand as individuals? As a community? What are our unspoken and unrecognized attitudes towards those who are different from ourselves? How are we influenced by our history?

Rev-eries - November 14, 2017

Robin Sharma, a Canadian writer and speaker, said, “Change is hard at the first, messy in the middle, and gorgeous at the end.” This congregation has been in the midst of change since Jay Lane and Harold Babcock announced their retirement, and I know there are many times when it has been hard.

Our Community Service food drive

Our annual Community Service of Newburyport Food Drive takes place in November, sponsored by the Human Services Committee. You can support this project by bringing food to the table in the vestibule and/or make a cash donation and we will do your shopping. A member of the Committee will be collecting cash donations after church each Sunday in November. Food products can be left on the table in the vestibule such as crackers, peanut butter, jelly, cereal, spaghetti sauce, boxed potatoes,  and canned fruit and veggies. Grocery list suggestions are on the table.

FRS Is Ready to Step Out!

We’ve done the survey, attended the Beyond Categorical Thinking workshop, met with the congregation during forums and coffee hour. FRS is just about ready to step out the door and into the UU world in its search for a new minister. The Congregational Record, which is the introduction to the inner workings of our community, is being fine tuned and sent off to the UUA. The record will be posted on the UUA website and available only to ministers and staff. This is our first chance to make ourselves known to ministers who are looking for a congregation. 

The gift of giving

Gift itemsWe need your help! Do you have items like these lying around your home that you don’t need, or even know what to do with? The Community Human Services Committee is sponsoring a new initiative for the kids in Kelleher Park, Newburyport’s Public Housing for Families. We want the children to experience the joy of “shopping” for and giving a holiday gift to their mom and/or dad.

Christmas Candlelight is coming up!

Music rehearsals for FRS' annual Christmas Candlelight Service begin on Sunday, November 5, from 1:30-3:30, in the Parish Hall and will continue on Sundays until the Candlelight Service on Sunday evening, December 17. Dress rehearsal will be on Saturday, December 16 at 10am, and at 7pm on December 16 there will be an adult Candlelight Chorale rehearsal. No auditions are necessary to join the Candlelight Chorale! Just come to the first rehearsal. Contact Dana Maiben (X410), Acting Director of Church Music, to join or ask questions.

Donate flowers or steeple lighting

The following dates are available for Steeple Lightings and providing flowers for Sunday service. To sign up for a date, email Nicole Salemi. Please include in your email: Steeple or Flowers, the date you've chosen, and the message to include in the Order of Service. Steeple Lighting is $75. Flowers either you provide or the church orders a standard arrangement ($35 plus tax) and florist bills you.

Steeple Lightings 2017-2018

July 8, 2018

July 29, 2018

Read your work at Jazz Vespers

Jazz Vespers invites you to consider being a reader at one of our Wednesday evening services. Readers choose their own selections which can range from humorous pieces to traditional literature to modern poetry or original works you have written. Vespers is held the first Wednesday evening of the month from October through June (save for a winter break in January) at 8pm in the Sanctuary. The service consists of Jazz and Pop music with three or four minutes of readings and a few minutes for silent reflection. Next Vespers is October 11, 2017.


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