Making the Nursery a Place of Belonging

The Parish Paper


“Where is the nursery?” That is often the first question when young parents visit a new church. At a minimum, they expect their question to be answered with confidence, not bewilderment. Beyond simply asking directions, the inquirer wants to know, Does this church care about us and our children? Is this a place where we can belong?

Keep Your Eyes on the Man in the Handcuffs

Kate Layzer


This story is about what we bore witness to in court the day after our arrest. I share it because I think it’s urgently important in this life to shed our illusions. I believe it as a Christian—what else is the cross of Christ for if not to make us look hard at suffering and injustice, and be forced to see it? And I believe it as an American. Our ideals are vapor if we can’t be honest about how the system is actually working, in real life. Our group was incredibly fortunate to be there and to be...

Many Voices, One Mission: Born for Such a Time as This

Jim Antal


"Because we have been born in a time such as this, we have this opportunity to bear witness to the truth." —Rev. Jim Antal

Setting Aside Old Boundaries to Offer an Unconditional Welcome

Maxwell Grant


The word that gets me in the proposed vision statement for the new, unified Conference is “unconditionally.” — Max Grant

Many Voices, One Mission: Collaborating In Covenant

Debby Kirk


"The blessing of a caring community will be realized in countless ways." — Debby Kirk

Is Carbon Pricing a Spiritual and Ethical Imperative?

The Rev. Dr. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas


It’s unusual to see a scientist, a politician, an economist, and a religious leader sitting together at one table to discuss climate change. Yet that’s just what happened at a public forum at Westfield State University entitled “Carbon Pricing – A Key Component in Solving a Warming Climate.”  The four speakers included Dr. Carsten Braun (a climate scientist at Westfield State), State Rep. Jen Benson (D-Lunenburg, the lead co-sponsor of bill H.1726, which places a price on carbon in ...

Clergy, Environmental Activists Invited to Sign Letter

Jim Antal


Three months ago, I attended an unprecedented gathering of Massachusetts religious leaders and climate scientists to discuss the shared imperative to address the climate crisis and to look for ways to collaborate.  It was convened by Cardinal Sean O'Malley.   The first initiative to emerge from this exciting meeting is the release of a Faith and Science Joint Appeal for Climate Action.    I invite clergy as well as other lay-leaders who are part of a congregation’s green team to sign this ...

Many Voices, One Mission: Inspired To Do

Jonathan New


"As with all charitable giving, church people are inspired to give when they understand and believe in the church's mission, know how it's making a difference, and have confidence in its leadership." —Rev. Jonathan New

Coaching Plus Healthy Communications: Does a Successful Conversation Make

Ellie Richardson


In “church-speak” one could say that one of the most powerfully meaningful experiences is making progress and fulfilling who God intends us to be on a level that gets to the core of our being.

Domestic Workers Coalition Partners with Immigration & Refugee Task Team

Myriam Hernandez Jennings


Creating partnerships to promote love and respect between Domestic Workers and their employers makes sense. And if these partnerships also promote social and racial justice to improve the treatment and safety of domestic workers is an added bonus.

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