Are you hoping to explore what it is like to be a part of our community at First Church in Cambridge, Congregational, UCC? You are in luck! We will be hosting several ways to learn more about who we are and where you might find a sense of belonging here. Whether it’s at one of our informal meet and greets, newcomer sessions, small groups, or on Joining Sunday, we hope First Church is a place where you feel supported in exploring your connection to God and community in this season of your life.
Who are we?
First, a little about us…For over 375 years, First Church has welcomed searchers and seekers, pilgrims and pioneers to share on the journey of faith that is guided by God’s grace, every step of the way. Though we celebrate a rich and robust history and tradition, we are called to live out our faith in the present, to make what is ancient fresh, and to make our ideals for the future relevant in the here and now. And while we cherish the unique ways in which we practice our faith as a congregation, we maintain strong ties with our denomination, the United Church of Christ.
How to Learn more about us
Newcomers Meet and Greet
Sunday, September 18, 12:00 – 12:30 p.m., Church Lawn
Those feeling new to First Church, or interested in meeting (in person!) someone new to our community, are warmly invited to meet up directly after worship at Coffee Hour on the lawn. Some of what you can expect: friendly faces, new friends?, questions answered, snacks, and an informal atmosphere for conversation. Our first Joining Sunday of the season will be on October 30.
Sundays September 18 & 25 12:30 p.m., Harter Room & via Zoom
We are hosting two drop-in opportunities to explore what membership at First Church in Cambridge means and to learn more about the history and values of our community. There will be time for us to wrestle with questions, build deeper connections with one another, and help each other feel more oriented to this place of belonging and becoming. Current members of First Church who are interested in engaging in these conversations and in being a resource for those who are newer are invited to join! Come with your questions, your story, and your appetite for new connections. Light snacks will be provided.
How to get involved
Are you feeling ready to join a small group to explore your faith or spiritual practice with others at First Church? Check out these groups that welcome drop ins and new folks to join below.
Weekly Bible Study
A small group gathers together on Zoom every Thursday evening at 6:00 p.m. for Bible Study. A rotating schedule of First Church members lead these informal gatherings to further engage with the sacred text of our faith and to gain insight into how it might speak to us anew in our lives. The goal of the discussion is to deepen our understanding of the Bible to further enrich our faith and to form new connections and friendships along the way. We will not study merely as an academic discipline, but with the desire to know God more intimately. Steady attendance or Bible study experience aren’t required; come when you want, as you are.
Contemplative Practices Gathering
Join us for a weekly gathering to explore a contemplative approach to our spiritual life. Together we learn about, and practice, various approaches to accessing our inner world, with an eye to “doing the inner work of outer work” — seeing the relationship between reflective contemplation and action in the world. Calls are led by First Church friend Duncan Holloman, a psychotherapist, with an extensive background in both Buddhist and Christian contemplative practice.
Encountering Faith and the Bible Anew
This group is especially for new members (within the past 2 years) or folks already among us who are looking to find a new or different connection with the concepts of faith and scripture. Are you looking to explore your relationship with your faith and the Bible? Are you in a season of deconstruction and reconstruction? If the Bible isn’t a science book or an instruction manual, then what is it? What do people mean when they say the Bible is inspired? If you are looking to explore new ways to think about faith and our scripture and tradition in a supportive community of care please join us in reading the book: Inspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again By Rachel Held Evans. For more information please contact Lexi Boudreaux.
This Place feels like Home and I’m ready to Join
Wonderful news! Making the decision to join a church community is an important moment. If you have any questions about what membership means to us or what joining by covenant means please be in touch with a minister on staff.
Please save the dates for our upcoming opportunities to explore membership and to build deeper connections with one another as we prepare for a Joining Sunday. Deadline to submit information for interest in joining the church is Sunday, October 23rd.
Sunday, September 18
12:00 p.m. Meet and Greet after Worship, Church Lawn during Coffee Hour
12:30 p.m. Newcomer Session 1, Harter Room and via Zoom
Sunday, September 25
12:30 p.m. Newcomer Session 2, Harter Room and via Zoom
Sunday, October 23
Deadline to give notice to join on Joining Sunday
Deadline for submission of bios and address info for Parish List
Sunday, October 30: Joining Sunday
9:30 a.m. New Members Breakfast, Front Lawn (rain location: Hastings Common)
11:00 a.m. Joining New Members in Covenant in Morning Worship
Don’t Know Where to Start? We’ve Got You.
If you don’t know where to start, look at some of the ways you can dip your toes into our life together below:
- Fill out a physical or Virtual Visitor Card
- Sign up for our weekly e-newsletter, First Glance
- Join our worship service in person or online
- Sign up for a seasonal small group on Zoom or in person.
- Follow us on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram.
- Join our weekly Thursday evening Bible Study Group
- Join our weekly Contemplative Practices Group on Monday afternoons
- Contact a Minister or Staff person