Weekly Updates                                                                                   March 20,  2015


Parents' Luncheon and Gathering 

This Sunday, parents are invited to gather to share a meal and time to connect. It will be a time for us to take a breath, reflect on this Lenten season together, and enjoy each others' company. We'll eat some good food, and close our time by joining the kids for some photo-booth silliness. We hope to see you!   Contributions of food, and/or RSVPs are appreciated as we plan for the lunch. Contact Amy after worship or at Thanks!


Kids' Fun Day and Visit to Waban Health!  

Kids of all ages will gather in the Vestry at 11:30am for Fun and Games! They'll have lunch together, and then be invited at around 1pm to walk to the Waban Health & Rehab Center to share a craft and smiles with the residents. They'll come back to the Union Church to talk about their experience, share a prayer and then meet parents for some more fun.


As we plan lunch, and activities/supervision for the kids, RSVPs would be helpful. Please contact Karen ( or Amy (, if you know you or your kids will be able to join us. Thanks so much!




Holy Week at

The Union Church

in Waban

Palm Sunday, March 29th, 10:00 a.m. worship. With palms and song, we will mark Jesus' entry into Jerusalem. Special music will include an anthem by the children's choir.


Maundy Thursday, April 2nd, 6:15 - 7:30 p.m. in the Vestry. The service begins with a simple meal of bread, soup and salad, and communion, as we remember Jesus' last meal with his disciples on the night that he was betrayed. After supper, the service then moves into Tenebrae worship, which is Latin for "shadows" or "darkening." As scripture and song leads us through the unfolding of events from that last supper through Jesus' death on the cross, the light will grow dimmer and dimmer, until we depart at the end of the service in darkness and silence. Child care will be available. Suggested donation to help cover the cost of the meal is $5/person with no more than $20/family. Sign up for this service is in the Crocker Chapel or please rsvp to the office so that we can plan for sufficient food and child care coverage.


Easter Vigil, Saturday, April 4th, 7:00 - 8:00 p.m. Traditionally, on the Saturday before Easter, newly-baptized Christians would keep an all-night vigil waiting with great expectation for the dawning of Easter's joy. Our service, however, is only an hour long, but we embrace this same journey from darkness into light. We start the service in darkness. Then the Christ candle that was walked out of our Maundy Thursday service is brought into the sanctuary. Through communion and the reaffirmation of our baptism, the light rises and so do our hearts as we give thanks for the joy of Easter morn that is coming. Child care will be provided.


Easter Worship, Sunday, April 5th, 10:00 a.m. Our Easter Service will include communion, a bell introit by the children's bell ringers, and as our offertory anthem, a piece entitled "Easter Rejoicing" by Jonathan Willcocks for the choir and trumpet. Children are invited to remain in the service for the entire service to share in this joyful worship. If, however, parents do need to step out with their children, the vestry will be set up with some activities/crafts. The nursery will be available for infants and toddlers. After worship, all children are invited to participate in an Easter egg hunt. After the service, please be sure to pick up your Easter blooms so that you can enjoy them at home.    



The Council is the governing body of the church and is elected at the annual meeting which is the first Sunday in June.  Council meets on the first Wednesday of the month beginning with dinner at 6:00 p.m. and then business from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m.  Council meetings are open to the congregation so please do stop in and join us if you are interested. 


Votes from the February Council meeting include:

  • Pastor Stacy will be on Sabbatical from August 25 to November 17th.  Council voted to hire an ordained minister to provide sabbatical coverage for 20 hr/week during this time.  
  • Deacons recommended and Council approved that we extend our Sunday morning worship through the month of June.  (In years past the last Sunday of the year was Father's Day weekend.) Deacons also recommended and Council approved that we have summer Sunday services at 5:00 p.m. throughout the month of July with no servies in August. (In years past, we had one Sunday afternoon service in July and one Sunday afternoon service in August,) 
  • The minutes are attached here.  If you have any questions, please reach out to Pastor Stacy or to our moderators, Alicia Collins and Annie Gatewood.  


NEWS from the PEWS


Help Needed

One of Anya Bassett's former students needs help caring for her father, who has just been diagnosed with cancer.  He lives in Concord, MA, and the family would like to hire a part-time non-medical person to help him around the house and to drive him to some of his chemotherapy sessions in Boston.  If you know someone who would be interested, please email Anya at







Contact the Union Church in Waban


Rev. Stacy Swain, Pastor

Church Website


Aidan Cunningham, Office Manager  


Karen Salides, Director of Childrens and Youth Ministries.


Amy Feldman

Ministerial Intern



Bible Study 8:00 a.m. in Stacy's Study.  We are reading through the Gospel of Mark.  Come once or come every time, All are welcome!    


Choir Rehearsal at 9:00 a.m. 


No Mindfulness Group this week.   


Worship Service 10:00 a.m.  We have the privilege of having The Reverend Martin Copenhaver, President of Andover Newton Theological School as our guest preacher.  President Copenhaver will offer a sermon entitled "Called and Recalled" exploring 1 Corinthians 1:1-3. To learn more about Pres. Copenhaver please go here. 


Please look for the Easter Bloom order form in the bulletin.  Orders and due into the office by March 29th.  


Children's Choir Rehearsal 11:30 a.m. 


Christian Education


Children will begin in worship and leave after the Children's Time. All children are welcome.


Our classes this Sunday are: 

Grades                           Lesson                                    Teachers 

PreK-1st            "Ten Commandments"                         Jane Purser                                                                                            & Ryan Barry

 2nd-3rd             "Ten Commandments"                         Karen Salides

 4th-5th                Jesus the Savior: Betrayal                  Jaap & Kathy

 6th & up             Jesus the Savior: Betrayal            Sarah Drummond

                                                                                  & Molly Kiritsy


 Nursery care for infants to three year olds will be in the Rainbow

 Room with Lisa Woloski-Barry.  

Sunday School teachers and assistants are needed. Please see Karen 

or a CE Committee Member if you are able to help in Sunday School.  


March Sunday School Schedule:  PreK-3rd Grade 

March 22nd:- Serve and Follow (John 12: 20-33)

March 29th: -Holy Week (Mark 11:1-11; 14:1-15:47) Palm Sunday 


March Sunday School Schedule 4th grade & up:

March 22nd:-Lesson: Jesus the Savior: Betrayal

March 29th:-Lesson: Jesus the Savior: Death 

 Eggs Needed


Easter Eggs are needed for the annual 

Easter Egg Hunt following worship on Easter Sunday, April 5. We need to collect eggs by March 29.  Your donation of plastic eggs, pre-filled with candy or trinkets, is appreciated.  






 and other 

Upcoming Opportunities message of gratitude from The Rev. Nancy Taylor, Senior Minister of Old South Church, come to one of the Boston Warms day shelters.  "Dear Union Church in Waban: Thank you so very much for dropping off to the Boston Warm Day Center at Old South Church a carload of hygiene kits, sweaters, and sundries. These materials are desperately needed and will be a great help to our homeless guests. Bless you!!!! - Nancy Taylor, Old South Church in Boston"



Dear Folks interested in Hunger Issues,


Want to help us decide, plan and schedule Union Church hunger outreach this spring?


* Shall we help fill a pantry at Newton Community Service Center that parents use when they come for child care or mental health services?

* Shall we collect grocery cards for The Second Step women moving away from violence in their home?

* Shall we cook and serve at Bristol Lodge in June?

* Shall we make plans to become a Local Initiative mission project that includes funding our outreach efforts?

How can we best involve our youth?

What other ways do you want to do hunger work through church?

Lets meet on Sunday, March 29th after church at 11:30.  Hope to see you there! For more information please see Jane Purser,



This is a brief and joyful update on the Union Church work at Russell School.

*    A new mentoring program has been jointly developed by the Russell Principal, staff and Union Church folks. You can participate with certain commitments.  See Mark to learn more! We look forward to hearing more soon about the progress of this important initiative, and about this opportunity for us to build relationships with some young children at our partner school. (For more information, see below.)

*  The terrific Computer Coding Club will begin again ! Thursdays after school beginning April 30th.  See Rob for more information on this great opportunity to volunteer in this after-school program. No expertise required. (For more information see below.)

* The fabulous  Multi-cultural night on March 26th, 5-7 pm should be great fun, and a chance to meet parents and staff over ethnic food. The energized Parent Council has invited elected officials, city leaders, others to attend in order for decision makers to learn more about Russell and how they can support the school. Want to car pool? (For more information see below.)

* The revived Music Program has permeated the school. The first concert was amazing and the program is now fully funded by Union Church, Hancock Church, Russell School and Community Music Center Boston. Stay tuned for next concert date.

* Other connections have been in play including Liz Caronna working with staff re: behavior challenged students; Kathy Malone as student teacher, church folks supporting Literacy Night.

* The Russell School Parent Leaders are hoping to join us at church one Sunday this Spring!


Help kids learn to program! -- 

Russell School Computer Club,  

Thursdays April 30th to May 28th from 2:45 to 4:30PM -- Come for just one day, or all 5!

We're working with the Russell School in Dorchester to introduce 4th and 5th graders to programming.  Volunteer to join us on one or more Thursday afternoons. As a volunteer, you'll work with a few 4th and 5th graders as they explore this new skill creating projects in the Scratch Programming Language.  No programming skills are required -- help the kids to focus on the goals of their projects and encourage them!


Contact Rob Purser ( for more information. are cordially invited to a very special event at the William Russell Elementary School  750 Columbia Rd. Dorchester, MA

Orientation Night: Celebrating our Multiculture

Thursday, March 26th   5-7 PM

  • Meet our families, meet our teachers, see our classrooms, and enjoy dance, art and our ethnic food!
  • Our school serves many children of many languages and cultures. We want to celebrate that!
  • Our successes are many and we hope to celebrate some of our strengths with YOU on March 26th.
  • Our guiding principles are Learning, Collaboration and Results and we would like to continue our collaboration with YOU.
  • Our school has hopes of continuing to be strong, and YOU are in a position to continue to support us and help us.

We very much hope to see YOU At Russell School, and thank you,

Parent Leaders, Maria Flores & Mr. and Mrs. Harrington. Principal, Mrs.Tamara Blake  RSVP by 3/19/2015 to: and


Consider Becoming a Mentor

at the Russell School!

By Mark Smith
For some time now, several UCW members have beenkicking around the idea of becoming mentors to young boys at UCW's partner school in Dorchester, the Russell School.  With many questions and details about the kind of project UCW members could commit to, Jaap and I went to the school last week to meet with the school's principal Tamara Blake.  Ms Blake spoke of the needs for her kindergarten-age boys to have positive adult interaction to help them develop the social skills they'll need to do well in school this year -- and the years to come.  Together, we brainstormed how a mentoring project could work for her students.  Jaap and I left the school inspired to get something off the ground this year - and the two of us have committed to begin to work one-on-one with young boys at Russell and see where the project (and the spirit!) leads.  So, beginning on Monday March 16, we are launching a new effort and we invite other to consider joining us. To start, we are committing to a weekly one-on-one time with students at the beginning of the school day (8:15am) for 15-20 minutes.  We will begin by developing friendship and trust with the boys, reading and drawing with them, playing games and other activities.   After two or three weeks, we will share our experience with others at UCW and answer questions about what is required to get involved with kids at the Russell. In the mean time, please see me or Jaap for more information. And, like all things of the spirit, stay tuned...




Planning and preparation for our next trip to Nicaragua in the Spring of 2016 is under way.   

If you think the you may be interested in joining the UCW group on our next trip, or would simply like to learn more about the program, Sue Hadley and Judy MacDonald will be available in the Crocker Chapel after service this Sunday to answer any questions you may have.  Also please take a moment to answer this survey.  Results will help in the planning of the trip.  Paper copies are available in the Crocker Chapel as well.  Thanks you!


NICA Trip Planning Meeting: 

Our next NICA trip planning meeting is today after worship on March 29th in Stacy's study. 



Wednesday Mornings 

at 7:30 a.m.

Prayer Group meets every Wednesday.  Throughout the season of Lent, please consider walking the labyrinth that is laid out in Memorial Chapel. with Stacy

Wednesdays at 9:00 a.m. 

Starbucks in Waban.

This is a drop in time to share a cup of coffee and conversation.  Please also feel welcome to set up a time with Stacy by emailing her here.


Bible Study

Thursday at 10:00 a.m. 


Russell Multicultural Event

Thursday, 5 -7:00 p.m.  at Russell School.

See details above in Mission/Outreach section..


Choir Rehearsal

Thursday at 7:30 p.m. 


Council Retreat

Saturday 8:30 a.m. - noon. Lenten Journey:

companion on the path.


In our "go it alone - pull yourself up by your bootstraps" secular culture, it is good to remember that as people of faith our life is a life lived together.  We are members of the body of Christ, beloved to God and beloved to each other.  


During Lent, the worship team invites you deeper into this reality by taking up an intentional practice of praying for another person or praying the prayer of another person within our community. 


Here is how it will work.  You will find in the pews a basket with cards in it.  Take a moment to write down a prayer that you have for yourself, someone you love or for the world.  For example you could write "Please pray for me -- your name"  or "Please pray that I may have greater insights as to where my career is to go -- your name"  or "please pray for the end to childhood hunger --  your name".  Whatever prayer is on your heart write it down and then place it in the offering plates as they pass.  You can include your name or leave  your prayer anonymous.  Whatever feels right.


The deacons will then take the prayers and place them in a basket in the front of the church by the prayer station.  On your way out of the sanctuary you are invited to take a prayer from the basket.  This will be the prayer you commit to praying  throughout the Lenten season.  You are free to take one or many.  But please pray these prayers intentionally through the season.  As a sign of your prayer, please light a candle and place it as an offering in the prayer station. As the season progresses so too will the light of our prayers. 


These offering of prayer will not replace our spoken prayer time during the service but will provide an opportunity to deepen our prayer over a sustained period of time as we hold each other and the concerns of our hearts very intentionally and personally for each other. 


In the words of Lord, Alfred Tennyson "More is wrought by prayer that this world dreams of."  May it be so!






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Union Church in Waban
| 14 Collins Road | Waban | MA | 02468