First Universalist Church of Essex

Weekly Update

The Hullabaloo is here!

Our Hullabaloo will TOMORROW, Saturday, February 29!  Get ready for some fun! Please see Bethany about joining this talent show fundraiser.

On the day of the Hullabaloo, we need tables and chairs set up in the basement for the spaghetti dinner.  Please let Becky or Art know if you could help with this.

This Sunday:

Rev. Eva will preach on Lent and Letting Go. 

Choir is practicing at 9am

Hospitality by the Hospitality Com. 

Book Discussion afterwards in Sanctuary on Through a Portagee Gate

Don't forget:

Blessing Bag supplies

Food for Open Door (Food Pantry)

Upcoming Events:

2/29 (Sat) 5:30pm Hullabaloo

3/1 (Sun) at 6:00pm UBU

3/3 (Tues) at 7:00pm PFLAG

3/4 (Wed) Lent Meditation

3/5 (Thurs) Open Door

Prayer List... In Our Thoughts and Prayers:

Mike Attridge, is having some trouble with pain, and eating is still an issue, BUT he is happy to report that his tumor is shrinking. He is thankful for all the prayers and support. 

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. 

Community and Care Coming to YOU:  Introducing Chalice

     What was once the Care Committee has evolved into a vision that takes the interweb of person to person connection beyond the walls of our church and into ultra -local community. The newly formed Chalice Community and Care Network grew out of a need to make sure we can all stay connected and supported by our congregation, especially at times when big life events like illness, hospitalization, new babies, or grief may keep us from getting to church. Though our building is small, we are a mighty congregation, with attendants from towns across the North Shore all the way from Peabody to Newburyport. Under the Chalice umbrella, each town or region is represented by a “Neighborhood” group. These Neighborhoods have the opportunity to meet, socialize, and plan support (for example signing up to bring meals, rides, visits, etc.) as well as explore ways to support local activism.  

     In the next few weeks, your Chalice Neighborhood representative will be reaching out to invite you to a casual get-together near you.  Join in for the fun, the socializing, or the pro-active community care. There’s no pressure to do more than be yourself, connecting to your local co-congregants.  We are still seeking a representative for Gloucester and Manchester. Please reach out to Kim Tompkins, 978-816-8773 or Eva if you are interested in representing those towns or with any questions you may have.  

Here is a current list of Neighborhood Facilitators: 

Essex: Tom and Peggy Duff, Isabel and Bob Parlee

Hamilton/Wenham: Carol and Bill Thedford

Beverly/Prides Crossing: Amy and Gordon Morrison

Rowley/Byfield/Newbury: Max Schenk

Peabody/Salem: Art and Melanie McDonald

Ipswich: Tudy Bartlett and Liz Raycroft

Gloucester: Rev. Eva Cameron

-Kim Tompkins, Chair

Lenten Activities

Join Art and Eva each Wednesday evening at 7pm for a Meditative Service.

Facebook UU Lent group has a word a day for focus and photo sharing. 

Rev. Eva has written a UU Stations of Cross Prayerbook, you are welcome to use at any local church that is doing Stations of the Cross. 

Auction Fundraiser

We are looking for someone to take the lead on our annual Auction.  We have a strong group of people who have already volunteered to serve on the Auction committee, but need someone head it.  This is a major fundraiser for the church.  Let's make it a success!

Please let Debbie or Eva know if you can help with this (really fun!) event.


Ecco's Sanctuary Coalition's Volunteer Systems Team is offering an exciting new way for congregation members to contribute critical skills toward making the sanctuary efforts possible by launching its 'presence volunteer' infrastructure. If you are interested in volunteering, a team is now being formed. The initial gathering is March 25th. See Debbie for more info.

Antisemitism Here and Now

Temple Ahavat Achim book group invites you to join them in reading their next selection Antisemitism Here and Now which they will discuss in late April. Professor Lipstadt is scheduled to visit the North Shore to speak to all participants on May 19th.

Anne Frank Parallel Stories

Join us on March 12th at Shalin Liu for a film and discussion co-sponsored by Temple Ahavat AchimAnne Frank Parallel Stories, a holocaust documentary.

Blessing Bags

The First Universalist Church of Essex RE Youth are asking for your support by providing supplies for a giving project based on Project I Am. The RE kids will assemble 30 or more "Blessing Bags" for the homeless in the coming weeks. Thank you for your support.

You can sign up to bring items and see what items are still needed. 

Thank you for your support!


Family Promise

CORI'ed/trained FP supporters are invited to volunteer as an Office Angel at the Family Promise day center. If you are interested in signing up but have not yet been oriented to the Family Promise day center space, please let Debbie, Becky or Diana know. Diana has offered to bring any of our congregants or friends who would like to go with her for a shift at the FP Rantoul Street location in Beverly.

Backyard Growers

Backyard Growers builds raised beds in the backyards of local low income seniors. 

Download an application or stop by the Backyard Growers office to apply in person by March 1st. Call Backyard Growers at 978-281-0480 with questions.

Open Door Pantry

Just a quick reminder for folks to donate food items to Open Door Pantry. Basket is up front.

Blessings, Art

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

We plan to meet the last Sunday of the month after church for the next 3-4 months for our discussion of each book section, as well as our own experiences with immigration. ~Eva

Rubin's House Concert

House Concert at the Rubin's Friday March 6 from 7-10 pm

Suggested donation of   $25 per person or $30 max per family.

All money goes directly to the musicians!  Please email Robin or Jeff to RSVP.

Midweek Musings

Rev. Eva shares a column with other local ministers in the Gloucester Daily Times called Midweek Musings. Click here to read her article. 

Coffee Hour Hosting Schedule

Sunday, March 1 - Hospitality Committee

March 8 - RE parents

March 15 - Lindle's Group

March 22 - TBD

March 29 - Hospitality Committee 

If anyone could help on March 22, please contact Becky.

Newsletter Content

The UU Essex Newsletter content is now due. Please email your write-up to Jane Dooley 

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 

General Assembly

The UUA General Assembly takes place in Providence, RI June 24-28, 2020. 

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