Alternative Gifts for Standing Rock

Kelly Gallagher


As the winter comes on in North Dakota, and the gathering at Standing Rock sees no hope for resolution in the near future, we invite you to consider a gift to these Water Protectors who stand for all of us in this crucial time. Over 500 clergy traveled to witness with the Sioux at Standing Rock this fall, 8 of whom were from UCC ministers from Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Vermont. Their reports are of a faithful spiritual witness for the earth and humanity and our future.   Please consider ...

Can We Wait for God's Spark?

The Parish Paper


December 2016—Volume 24, Number 12              Copyright @ 2016 by C. Jeff Woods God sparks innovations, but only on God’s terms, and those terms usually involve disruption. From burning bushes to wood that burns even when soaked, God’s sparks manifest themselves in unusual ways. We can choose to ignore the spark or even squelch the spark. But, if we take notice of it, the spark soon becomes a roaring fire. What are the conditions for God’s spark? And, does the spark look different if people ...

Transforming the Attitude of Gratitude into an Action of Welcome for Refugees

Dawn Adams


These days after Thanksgiving, let’s move from giving thanks to offering acts of thanks giving.

Post-Election Vigil Spurs Increased Worship Attendance

Todd Weir


We discovered that many who attended our post-election vigil were looking for a safe place in the midst of uncertainty.

Shall We Gather?

Wendy Vander Hart


I am sure in the wake of our national elections of the need for conversation: a conversation that offers a chance to process our feelings and think through some ways to faithfully respond.

Let’s Be The Church!

Barbara Libby


Let’s gather. Based on feedback we will hold this round of gatherings for clergy. If you have colleagues in your community who would appreciate a chance to join this conversation bring them along.

We Are The Earth: Public Prayer for the Planet

The Rev. Dr. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas


Last Tuesday, Americans voted into office a Presidential candidate who has embraced fossil fuels, called climate change a hoax, and vowed to withdraw from the Paris agreement.  Bishop Doug Fisher, Rev. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas, Fr. Richard F. Reidy, & Bishop Alan Gates share a laugh. Photo credit: Robert A. Jonas Yesterday, five days later, Christians from across Massachusetts gathered on a hillside to reaffirm our dedication to restoring God’s creation. Led by five of the top Protestant and...


Jim Antal


This morning, our personal vocation and our collective calling to make God’s love and justice real is being tested like never before.  All at once we find ourselves lost without a map or compass in unfamiliar and threatening territory… and we read the headlines and realize that our commission – our role – our calling – remains unchanged.    Our calling and challenge is to assure that love wins and to make real the assurance that the moral arc of the universe – while it may at this moment seem ...

Reflection from Standing Rock

Lise Sparrow


The Oceti Sakawin Camp at Standing Rock could, upon first sight, appear to be an ancient indigenous harvest gathering, with its smoke rising at dawn from the frosty teepees or, to another set of eyes, perhaps trigger memories of Japanese internments camps or, to another,  WW2 refugee camps in Palestine.    Upon coming closer it seems more like one of thousands of north american camping outposts with porta-potties and dumpsters, or then again, be a native Pow Wow with the sacred fire and various ...

UCC Stands in Support of Standing Rock

John Edgerton


Samuel answered the Lord, saying, ‘Speak, for your servant is listening.’ Then the Lord said to Samuel, ‘See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make both ears of anyone who hears it tingle’. As Samuel grew up, the Lord was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground. ~1 Samuel 3   This week, you were in the community gym of Cannonball, North Dakota.   There were 500 people there, all supporting the Standing Rock Sioux Nation in their fight to protect their sacred lands and...

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