First Parish Of Newbury, 20 High Road, Newbury, MA

Sunday Worship:  10:00 AM.  

Summer worship services July and August
July worship: Sundays 9:30 am, Belleville Congregational Church.
August worship: Sundays 9:30 am, here at First Parish.





Hello & welcome to First Parish Church of Newbury!  We’re a United Church of Christ congregation with a traditional worship service and dynamic mission programs that serve hundreds in our community.  Please join us for worship any Sunday.  See below for more info.  We look forward to meeting you!
Rev. Jeff MacDonald, Pastor of First Parish Church of Newbury



Sunday, Aug. 11, 2019
Joint worship with Belleville Congregational Church

Welcome Belleville Congregational Church! We thank you for hosting us in July & are delighted to have you worshipping here at First Parish this month.

Welcome back, Nancy Reed! We are grateful to have Nancy back on the organ today.

We will not be passing offering plates this month, though donations are welcome. If you’d like to contribute to First Parish or Belleville, collection plates are marked accordingly in the rear of this sanctuary.

Parking at First Parish is available behind the church and is permissible at the front of the church. Entrances include the handicapped one near the parking lot, the pre-school entrance near the bottom of the driveway, and the front entrances:

a typical pot luck lunch at First Parish


Join us Potluck brunch and a discussion of our summer reading pick after worship Sunday, August 25th If you can bring a dish or beverage to share, please do. And if you forget to bring something, come eat anyway! There is always plenty of food. 

The book we’ll be discussing is Climate Church, Climate World: How People of Faith Must Work for Change is authored by our recently retired Conference Minister Jim Antal.  All are welcome to join the conversation whether you’ve read the book or not!





Upcoming Events

Pickup choir resumes in September.  Its an opportunity join the choir for a day the third Sunday of each month! Bring a friend who likes to sing.


The Bible Study led by Beth Coffee will be the 2nd and fourth Sunday of each month at 8:30 AM.





 Kaminski will be back in September to appraise and buy valuables





Keep an eye out for more death café events in months ahead. These events are popular around the country as they provide a rare forum to discuss and ask questions about death-related issues.


Merrimack Valley Habitat for Humanity welcomes volunteers from First Parish at its affordable housing construction projects going on this Spring & summer in Salisbury. Skilled and unskilled help are needed. This is a great way to do good, make friends and hone a few practical skills simultaneously. College kids welcome! Must be age 18 or older. For information and to get on the volunteer list, contact Thea Shapiro at 978-681-8858 ext 13 or

Communion is offered once a month, usually the last Sunday.  





Nursery care and Sunday School run from mid-September through mid-June in the Holton Hall pre-school area (downstairs) between 9:45 and 11:15, while the congregation worships upstairs.

Details and registration materials can be found at
Visit our Church Facebook Page at

Music opportunity at First Parish. Do children in your family play instruments? Or do you play? First Parish offers a standing invitation to play during worship in a supportive, encouraging atmosphere. Please speak with Rev. MacDonald or Music Committee Chair Virginia Champi to learn more.

Food pantry is open every Friday from 3 to 5 pm for all who need food assistance. If you can help unload the monthly delivery truck, please stop by at 9 AM Thursday, Jan. 17. It comes on the 3rd Thursday of each month.    





Deacons meet the second Tuesday of each month.

Church council meets the first Wednesday of each month from September to June.


Visit our Church Facebook Page at

Tour the First Parish Burying Ground anytime to see how preservation, restoration and maintenance efforts offer a glimpse into the area’s history as well as honoring and remembering the contributions of many Veterans and early settlers buried there.

We are grateful to the Newbury Cultural Council for again granting the First Parish preservation funds, this time in the amount of $260.00  to support renovation of the Cast iron fence in the Burying Ground. Our friends of the cemetery group will be planning the project and you are welcome to join the group.

First Parish Missions: 

Fresh produce provided during the summer

The Food Pantry provides food for special diets, toiletries, pet food, and perishable/non-perishable food.  We are open to all in need and welcome volunteers.  The entry door is located near the rear parking lot and is handicapped accessible.

One of our patrons recently described her experience. highlighting ways in which the pantry has served her special needs as “a disabled resident of Newburyport living below the poverty line.  “At many pantries there is very little I can take because of my environmental illness (allergies and such.)…The foods I receive have contributed enormously to my health.”

She and we want to thank every person who works to make the First Parish Food Pantry successful.  Farmers, volunteers, gardeners, drivers, coordinators, and community members.


The 2019 New Eden garden organic community garden growing season is underway.  If you want to know more about how it works and would like to consider renting a plot next year, contact Chuck Mead at  or Adam Kowal at  Details can be found at

A stone being repaired

Cemetery Preservation: To find a family member or founding father buried in the First Parish burying ground a comprehensive map of the burying ground can be viewed at

Also available to assist are Karen King at 978-465-8101 and Tracey Goodwin at 

Stone Cleaning

A grant funded preservation project at First Parish’s Old Burial Ground enabled Joshua Gerloff and Rachael Meyer to restore and clean stones.  Visitors and community members are always welcome to tour the grounds. Visit the Burial Ground page to see our new restoration initiative

 If you are interested in joining or supporting our preservation committee contact Karen King.

Re-purposing/recycling of used clothing:  

We’ve partnered with St. Pauly Inc., granting permission for them to put a clothing shed in our parking lot.  We support their efforts to:   

Reduce waste in landfills

Enable your clothing to be used worldwide

Redistribute donations as whole garments

The shed accepts donations of all clothing, shoes, sneakers, belts, purses, blankets, towels, sheets, pillowcases, curtains, and stuffed toys.

Our Secret Garden Indoor/Outdoor Environmental Pre-school is a nature based pre-school created to provide quality care and education for children ages 2.9 to 5.  The school is open 5 days a week from September through June and a summer enrichment program is available in July and August.

Photos from Summer enrichment camp 2018:  Hands on learning about sea creatures in “Mermaid Lagoon”

The OSG website is at

growing organically in the children’s garden




What happens at First Parish Church?

Here’s a quick introduction:

*Worship. We praise, proclaim, petition and encounter the living God together every Sunday  morning in our historic 1869 sanctuary.

*Education. Our Biblically knowledgeable teachers help elementary & middle school kids learn and grow spiritually during worship hour (9:45 am – 11 am Sundays) from mid-September through mid-June.

*Formation. We explore scriptures in depth together in our discipleship & Bible study group, which meets twice a month before worship. Here we consider what it means for us, both as unique individuals and as a faith community, to live in light of the Gospel. Open to ages 14 on up.

*Outreach. Parishioners established a food pantry that provides non-perishable food and pet supplies every Friday afternoon.  During the growing season New Eden Organic garden share holders donate a percentage of their produce to the food pantry.

*Fellowship. We have social time with refreshments weekly after worship & monthly over a community meal.




Q: Do I have to be a member of the church to, say, attend Bible study or volunteer at the Salvation Army?

A: No! Newcomers are welcome to hop in anywhere and anytime. That’s how spiritual experiences happen and how authentic relationships grow.

Q: Am I supposed to dress up for church?

A: You may if you would like, but it’s not required. Some wear ties and dresses; others come in t-shirts and jeans. Whatever is comfortable for you is OK.

Q: Do I need to believe something in particular?

A: We teach the scriptures and doctrines of Christianity. We regard them as true and trustworthy. However, we don’t expect everyone to arrive as experts or anything close to it. We’re all curious to learn more. We strive to see our life experiences anew through lenses of Christian teachings and to live in relationship with the living God of the Bible. First Parish provides a safe space to ask questions, learn and grow. And we equip individuals and families with resources for making progress from week to week.

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