First Universalist Church of Essex

Weekly Update

UBU had a fabulous 2019! We are getting ready for a great new year! 

See below for more information about 2020 UBU meetups.

This Sunday:

Eva will preach on Three Kings Day, and what message it holds for us today. 

From Diana:

This Sunday, January 12th, we’re all set to do a little coffee-hour “take” on the Epiphany story of the Magi, (Three Kings), and the the old lady Epithania, and to offer it as a suggestion for next year, building on our community’s obvious interest and delight in the idea of celebrating this ancient festival.

So don’t be surprised if we offer a  cake, in whose slices reside one (yes, one) black bean, the “feve” of a classic Three Kings Cake – that black bean hand-picked by Noah from his Alprilla Farm winter stock; whoever finds the bean has a happy new year. And there will be little bags of a toy or candy for the children, according to the Italian story of the old lady Befana, who missed the Christ Child but went around the world giving gifts to children. 

There are delightful, and interesting, entries in Wikipedia about all these things, if you have the time for age-old stories and New Orleans recipes;  but of course, you may have your own! -Diana

Upcoming Events:

Tonight's Hang Out is cancelled.

1/12 (Sun) at 6:30pm Writers Group

1/12 (Sun) at 6:00pm


1/13 (Mon) at 6:30pm Tai Chi

1/15 (Wed) at 6:45pm Board Meeting

Prayer List... In Our Thoughts and Prayers:

Lindle's brother, who is undergoing chemo and radiation for his brain cancer. 

Mike Attridge who started a new cancer treatment recently.

Linda Goddard had surgery to drain a giant leg hematoma on Dec 24th. The surgery was successful and she is on the mend.

To all of those in our congregation, and to their loved ones, we send sincere, heartfelt messages of healing and comfort.  

Please let us know if you would like to be added to this list, or have a loved one to add. 

Theologies of Universal Salvation, Harvard Divinity School 

In spring 2020 Harvard Divinity School will honor the 250th anniversary of John Murray’s arrival in North America with a special open course on “Theologies of Universal Salvation,” taught by Dan McKanan. The Course Introduction takes place on January 30th from 3 to 5pm. Click here for the schedule of events and for more information.

Book Talk

The Non Fiction Book Group at First Parish on the Lexington Green, is pleased to host Unitarian Universalist minister and author John Buehrens.  Reverend Buehrens will be speaking in Parish Hall on January 9, 2020, at 7 PM., about his latest book, Conflagration: How Transcendentalists Sparked the American Struggle for Racial, Gender, and Social Justice. Click here for more information.

Essex Housing Forum

Invitation to Essex Housing Forum on January 22, 7-8:30 PM at Essex Town Hall.

Join the Essex Housing Group for “Making Essex a Place to Call Home: Housing Needs and Choices in Essex,” a Forum on Housing on Wednesday, January 22, 2020, 7:00-8:30 PM at Essex Town Hall. Click here for more information.

Common Read

Join me in reading the book Through a Portagee Gate by Charles Reis Felix. It's first hand account of an immigrant experience, to me seemed like a useful way to "re-center" myself. It is available on Amazon

I am thinking we could meet a few times in mid-January, when life is slower, and talk about our experiences in reading the book. And then perhaps have some people share their own family's stories of immigration. ~Eva


Gatherings are held from 6 to 8pm at the Gould's on Sundays: Jan. 12 and 26, Feb. 9 and 23, March 8 and 22, April 5 and 19. 

Conserving Heat

We ask that the last person to leave the church please shut the double doors in the church foyer to conserve heat. Thank you!



Interested in Membership or learning more about the UU Faith? Please see Rev. Eva to schedule an appointment.

Google Calendar 

Click here to access the church calendar from a web browser. If you are a user of Google Calendar, you can enter ID: and add our calendar to your line-up of calendars (on your phone or on a browser). We welcome suggestions on how church events and information are shared. Please email Laurel 


Please join a fun group number for the Hullaballoo!

I am inviting any performers, teens to adult, to join a group number for the Hullaballow, "The Farmer and the Cowhand", from Oklahoma. I thought it would be a good number to do at our fundraiser, since in the show, the territory folks have gotten together for a box social to raise money for the schoolhouse.  There are jibes between the ranchers and the cowboys, who are rivals over land use in the territory.  A fight breaks out, but Aunt Eller settles everybody down. Chorus people need only learn the simple four-line refrain, "Territory folks should stick together," etc  Dancers are welcome, since the chorus a hoedown. Alexandra has agreed to play for us, so please join the fun!  We will need to meet a few times to rehearse, but solo parts can be learned beforehand to keep rehearsal time to a minimum.  If interested, please let me know. 


Publishing Information: 

The Weekly Update is sent out by Eva each week.  Please send information about events and happenings to Laurel by Wednesday.

First Universalist Church of Essex

59 Main Street

Essex, MA 01929