Social Justice, Community and Environmental Action
Environmental Action Sunday:
Sunday, October 7 @ Noon
Imagine our town powered by sun and wind! Renewable Natick is a citizen led grassroots effort to increase Natick’suse of renewable energy sources and improve energy efficiency, which will lower our community’s greenhouse gas emissions. Come learn more about this local initiative! A light lunch will be served.
Get out the Vote!
Thursday, October 10 @ 7PM
There has never been a more critical election for LGBT rights in our Commonwealth. Transgender people are counting on your vote in November to uphold non-discrimination protections this year. Join us on October 10th to learn more about the Massachusetts Ballot Question #3. We will be joined by members of the transgender community, as well as Representative David Linsky, who will provide context on what the repeal of public accommodations access would mean for our state.
Faithful Witness at the Border
Sunday, October 14 @ noon
with Myriam Jennings & Marge Roberson
Hear about the efforts of some of our congregation who traveled in August to a border crossing between Mexico andArizona to witness first hand the experiences of familiesseeking asylum at our border. A light lunch will be served.
Dialogues on the Refugee Crisis
Tuesday evenings @ 7 PM Five-week session beginning October 2
with Vicky Guest, Marge Roberson & Myriam Jennings
It’s not news to anyone that we are living in a time of conflict, division and disagreement. We are becoming people who can’t seem to find our way out of the “us vs.them” pit of divisiveness. Yet our faith story is rooted in journeys of refugees from Abraham and Sarah to Joseph, Mary and Jesus. Because of these stories, people of faith are uniquely equipped to bring healing, hope and wholeness to a hurting world. This small group study will provide participants with a set of tools to create bridge building conversations rather than explosive arguments. Then we’ll take all of that into our jobs, and homes and Thanksgiving dinners, and offer an alternativeto conflict and division. We’ll offer dialogues. Cost ofthe book is $10.
Natick Open Studios
Saturday, October 20, and Sunday, October 21
Now in its 18th year, Natick Artists Open Studios is comprised of over 70 artists who live, work or show in Natick, as well as guest artists. You can engage in conversations about the experience of creating art, learn about how it is made, and buy local art directly from the artists. On October 20th & 21st you can enjoy the exhibits of many of these talented Natick artists both in our vestry, as well as traveling around town to the many locations where other artists are exhibiting their work.
Family Promise Metrowest Celebrates 10 Years
Sunday, October 28 @ Noon
Family Promise has been providing temporary shelter for families in the MetroWest area for 10 years. Our church welcomes families three times a year alongside the large volunteer team made up of 19 host and 31 supporting congregations. Congregations provide these families a safe place to gather for meals and hospitality, as well as put their head down at night. On October 28th our coffeehour will move around the corner to 6 Mulligan Street, because we have been invited to tour the new Family Promise Metrowest Day Center. Come see what the buzz is all about!
Environmental Action Sunday:
The Climate Reality Project / An Inconvenient Sequel
Sunday, November 4 @ noon
with Vicky Guest
Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree that human activity is driving a climate crisis all across the Earth. We know it’s happening, and we know why. Hear an update from Vicky Guest on the Climate Reality Project, with clips from Al Gore’s recent movie, An Inconvenient Sequel. A light lunch will be served.
Hot Enough for You?
First Tuesday of the month @ 7PM beginning November 6
with Vicky Guest & Bill Ramage,
Monthly book discussion of Climate Church, Climate Word: How People of Faith Must Work for Change, a new resource for congregations on the climate crisis by our former Conference Minister and President, Rev. Jim Antal. His book inspires courage and persistence and offers practical tools to respond to the greatest challenge of our time. Cost of the book is $25.
Family Promise Hosting Weeks
November 18, February 3, June 23
Family Promise offers hope to homeless families with children through safe transitional shelter, meals and supportive case management as they seek permanent housing. We open our church building for a week several times each year to provide a welcoming place for homeless families to stay. Volunteer opportunities range from set-up to shopping to hosting meals to offering activities for the children and overnight stays.
Gun Violence Prevention Sabbath:
Vigil and Forum
December 9 through 15
Vigil on Wednesday, December 12 @ 6:30PM; Forum to follow
Each December we remember those lives lost to gun violence in our country and we call for common sense gun legislation to reduce the harm to our families and communities. Join us on the Front Porch for a candlelight vigil to remember those lives, especially those killed this year in Parkland, Florida. Following the brief outdoor vigil, we will move inside for a discussion of the impact of gun violence on the stigma associated with mental health challenges and to hear from Representative David Linsky about Extreme Risk Protective Orders.
Annual Community Opiate Vigil
Sunday, December 16 @ 7PM
The prescription pain killer and heroin crisis is wreaking a devastating effect on young Natick residents and their families. During the holiday season, the Natick community will gather again to remember those we have lost and raise awareness about addiction in MetroWest. The evening will include testimony, inspirational speaking and prayer, as well as an invitation to future action.
Wednesday, January 9 and 16 @ 7PM with Sarallyn KellerHow should our society respond to wrongdoing? Restorative Justice is an attempt to address the needs and limitations of our current legal system. In Micah we are encouraged to act justly, love kindness and walk humbly with our God – we will explore how to apply this lesson in modern times.
I Am Jane Doe
Sunday, January 13 at 7PM
This documentary follows the epic battle of several American families in a gut-wrenching story about human trafficking.
On the Courthouse Lawn:
The Legacy of Slavery
Sunday, January 20 @ noon
with Sarallyn Keller
If we want a more hopeful future, less burdened by bigotry and discrimination, it is important to confront not only our nation’s history of slavery but also the silence that followed in its wake. It is time to change the narrative and acknowledge the brutality and cruelty of the past, so we can move forward to become a healthier society. Sarallyn Keller will recount her visit to the Legacy Museum and National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Alabama. A light lunch will be served.
MLK Community Celebration
Monday, January 21 @ 10AM
Wilson Middle School Auditorium
Gather with the wider Natick community to celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and discover how his legacy continues to shape our community and empower our young people to practice justice and compassion for all people. The Johnson Peacemakers, guest speakers from the high school and youth winners of the MLK Essay competition will present. All are welcome to participate a community gathering to follow where you can meet many of the great people and organizations committed to service and justice and social action who make Natick a great place to live.
Environmental Action Sunday:
Planting a Pollinator Garden
Sunday, March 24 @ noon
with Sarallyn Keller
Pollinators need native plants for food and habitat, and plants need pollinators. Without both, the entire food system is at risk. And right now, the birds, bats, bees, moths, and butterflies that pollinate plants are in crisis worldwide. The New England Wildflower Society has great resources and information on how to plant diverse, systemic pesticide free native plants that support a wide variety of pollinators throughout their life cycles. Maybe you will be inspired to plant a pollinator garden yourself this spring? A light lunch will be provided.
Environmental Action Sunday: The Journey of the Universe
Sunday, May 12 @ noon
with Liz Hanna
The Journey of the Universe is a collaboration of the evolutionary philosopher, Brian Swimme and Mary Evelyn Tucker, a historian of religion at Yale. They weave a tapestry that draws together scientific discoveries in astronomy, geology and biology with our role as humans in this awe inspiring universe. Liz Hanna, a recent graduate of the Theology and Ecology program at Yale, will be our guide on this journey and share a few excerpts from the film, as well as her insights from her studies and current work. A light lunch will be served.
“Stop the Bleed”
Sunday, May 19th at noon in the vestry
In April 2013, just a few months after the active shooter disaster on December 14, 2012, at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT, the American College of Surgeons convened a group including the U.S. military, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and emergency medical response organizations, to create a protocol for national policy to enhance survivability from active shooter and intentional mass casualty events. The “Stop the Bleed” initiative was the result. It was determined that many lives could be saved if victims had bleeding controlled by bystanders and first responders in the field. By doing so, they are able to make it to definitive intervention before bleeding to death. Much like the Red Cross and American Heart association’s efforts to teach CPR, The American College of Surgeons’ goal is to train every American in basic bleeding control techniques.
To date there are over 44,000 registered instructors and over 600,000 people have been trained.
Steve Palmer is one of those instructors and the Safety and Security team is bringing a “Stop the Bleed” class to First Church Natick. Come find out how to save a life on May 19th after worship. We will be reviewing the use of the AED as well.
Natick is United:
Natick is United is a network of a variety of groups in Natick interested in promoting an atmosphere of welcome and inclusiveness. There are many opportunities to get involved from flying a rainbow peace flag at your home to attending an educational event to showing up for a peace rally on the common. Keep your ear to the ground and watch for more information about what this group is planning. Visit their website at https://www. natickisunited.org.