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Welcome!

Thinking about walking through our front door? Cool! We hope to see you soon at any of our Sunday worship services, musical events or programs. Read on to learn a little about the building, the people, and our events

 

Whether you’re new to the area, searching for a spiritual community, or simply curious to learn more about us, we’re excited to welcome you.

Scroll down or click the section you're most interested in:

Your First Time                           Worship Services                           Welcoming

  Accessibility                                Dress Code                                      Music

Your First Time

On the day of your visit, aim to arrive a little early. This will give you time to find parking, locate the main entrance on Concord Road, and get settled before the service begins. Our friendly greeters will be available to assist you and answer any questions you might have.


We have a small parking lot but plenty of overflow parking behind the Talbot Lodge (square white building) and behind the Billerica Public Library. 

Enter through the green doors on Concord Road. You'll immediately notice our Parish Hall directly in front of you and stairs to your left and right. To access the sanctuary, walk up the stairs or utilize our elevator. We suggest asking for assistance when operating the elevator the first time. 

 

Restrooms are located behind the Parish Hall. The facilities are accessible and your will find signs indicating your preferred restroom and notice personal care products available for use. 

Worship Services

Sunday Worship Services begin at 11am and last approximately 1 hour. The order of service can be accessed on your digital device or you will be handed one by a greeter. View the most recent ones here.  

Our services usually include music, readings, reflections, and a sermon – although from time to time services may be different and more creative in form.  Our services are on Sunday at 11:00 a.m. Most services last about an hour. Religious Education classes are offered for children and youth. One Sunday a month we have an intergenerational service where school aged children stay in the Sanctuary for the full service.  These services are geared to include the children; through movement, creative art, and other child centered elements to engage and include all ages.

 

Following each service, we have a fellowship/coffee hour downstairs. Visitors are welcome and encouraged to join us. You'll be asked to sign our guest book and be introduced to a couple friendly faces. 

Accessibility

At First Parish Church in Billerica (FPC), we believe in radical inclusion and make accessibility a priority as a part of living out our values out loud. We welcome people with disabilities and abilities (both seen and unseen). Throughout the building and programming you will find that we strive to be as inclusive and welcoming as possible. Beyond physical accessibility, FPC works to craft programming that is intellectually stimulating and accessible to a wide and developmentally diverse congregation.  We understand that there are always ways that we might improve our accessibility, and welcome suggestions and conversations about accessibility needs that we might address. Please feel free to contact the office to have  your suggestions forwarded to the correct team.

 

Our building is accessible to all by ramps, has wheelchair-accessible bathrooms, and three handicap parking spaces outside the church. The accessible entrance is on the East side of the building, directly in front of the handicap parking spaces. All levels of the church can be accessed by elevator - the Sanctuary, classrooms, and Parish Hall. 

Large print hymnals and Orders of Service are available and can be accessed from any digital device by scanning the QR code on the Order of service or the back of a pew. 

Hybrid services each week to allow participation in times of ill health, blizzards, or challenging life events. If you can't be in the building, we hope to see you online.

Masking: Each congregation is unique, and we must base our decisions on our unique circumstances. Our UU principles and values direct us to remember and care for the most vulnerable, inside and outside our congregation as we work to maintain accessibility and inclusion for everyone to participate in our activities. Changes in policy are based on science and we follow the community risk levels for Billerica and Middlesex County.  Based on the decrease in community risk – which is now low in Middlesex County, and the fact that our sanctuary is large enough for people to spread out, masks are no longer required.  Masks are available for anyone who wants one -  individual comfort level and to use at your own discretion. Anyone who chooses to mask will be treated with respect, love and care. We ask anyone who is not feeling well to please stay home and join us on zoom.  Vaccinations are strongly encouraged for anyone who is eligible.

Welcoming Congregation

In the 1990s, First Parish Church began the process to become a Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) certified Welcoming Congregation. After many years of education, growth, and community outreach, FPC became a Welcoming Congregation in 2007. This means we affirm and include people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer at every level of congregational life—in worship, in program, and in social occasions—welcoming them as whole people. We have pledged to: 

  • honor the lives of all people and equally affirm displays of caring and affection without regard for sexual orientation.

  • celebrate diversity by using inclusive language and content in worship.

  • incorporate an understanding of the experience of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer persons throughout all of our programs, including religious education.

  • affirm and celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer issues and history.

  • affirm marriage equality and conduct same-sex weddings.

  • advocate for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people, promoting justice, freedom, and equality in the larger society. We speak out when the rights and dignity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people are at stake.

Dress Code

There’s no dress code at First Parish. We believe in coming as you are, so feel free to dress comfortably and in a way that makes you feel at ease.

Music

First Parish Church is blessed with many talented parishoners who play the piano, trumpet, violin and many gifted singers. If you would like to join the choir, let a greeter know and they will make the introductions. 

In 1967, the historic organ was destroyed with the rest of the building. Luckily, a church merger made an organ of the tracker-type built in 1898 by Emmons Howard of Westfield, MA available to First Parish. In 1969, the Andover Organ Company rebuilt and installed the organ under the direction of the church organist who continued playing until his retirement in 2014. 

Use of an electric keyboard, guitars, and pianos are often incorporated in worship services and open mic events.

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