COVID-19 Community Updates

As we navigate the many challenges and demands presented by the coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency, we will post messages and other communications received in the Parish office from friends and neighbors throughout the community, which may be of interest or benefit to our members.

September 17, 2021

CLICK HERE for the current plan for indoor gathering for worship

The COVID Task Force (Sherri Cline, Bridget Hanson, David Hoaglin, Diane Hoaglin, Rev. Dr. Marjorie Matty, and Sheila Murphy), continues to meet regularly to determine how and when we can safely gather in person. We try to lead with our Unitarian Universalist values of inclusion, consent, and covenant. We are committed to following the recommendations of public health officials (CDC, local board of health) and to using metrics as the basis for decision making. Because the pandemic is an ever-evolving phenomenon, neither expert recommendations nor metrics are always consistent or clear. When that happens, we also look at what, if any, mitigating circumstances (air quality, vaccination rates, etc.) exist that might help us gather safely in person.

The past eighteen months have been hard, whatever our individual circumstances. Some of us are eager to resume activities, while others remain cautious as we continue to learn the impact of variants. For some, we bounce between the two. It’s important to remember that all of those responses are just fine. First Parish is committed to supporting you in doing whatever feels right for you. As we have said so many times since the spring of 2020, we are in this together.
Just as FPS is committed to supporting members and friends, we want to be present for each other as we navigate the challenging and wonderful process of gathering in a changed world. It’s always a good idea to simply ask people what they are comfortable with, “May I take my mask off or would you prefer I leave it on?”, “Would you like a hug?”, “Are you comfortable sharing food?” Yes, no, I’m not sure – all are acceptable answers!

We held our first fall in-person worship service outdoors last Sunday. We met on a beautiful sunny day and shared our annual water communion. The current plan is to continue offering a hybrid model of Sunday worship; in-person—outdoors, weather permitting—and also online. We anticipate that, with new air purifiers in the Sanctuary and Parish Hall, we will be able to gather indoors as the weather turns colder.

We continue to recommend that small meetings (committees, groups, etc.) meet online or outdoors. We encourage groups to discuss what precautions would make them feel safe and adopt a format that is inclusive of everyone.

Masks are required indoors at FPS at all times. Please do not go into the building without a mask; this is required by the Sudbury Board of Health. We strongly urge members and friends to obtain high-quality masks. Some members of the task force have purchased masks from DemeTECH, an American manufacturer that ramped up mask production in the early days of the pandemic. They make a NIOSH certified N95 mask and have recently begun producing a D95 mask using the same materials, but utilizing over-the-ear loops.

We look forward to seeing you, whether it is in person, on Zoom, or a combination of both. Wherever and however we gather, it is good to be together in community!

Questions, thoughts, or concerns? Please email us at .

Masks Required in Meetinghouse

August 2021: Please note that masks are required to be worn in the Meetinghouse at all times.

Sew Your Own Protective Mask

For those who may be interested in sewing their own protective face masks, a simple pattern and instructions are provided here, courtesy of Dianne Hoaglin and her daughter-in-law, Nike Mendenhall. Simply click on the links to access both the pattern and the instructions… and happy sewing!

If you are currently making masks and would care to donate them, please package them in plastic, and place them on the bench beside the door. Click here to view CDC Guidelines for making, wearing, and caring for protective masks.

MA Legislative Response to COVID-19

Click here here to stay informed and up-to-date on all bills, pending in the Massachusetts Legislature, which relate specifically to the COVID-19 emergency. This site is comprehensive, and updated daily.

Lincoln-Sudbury Mutual Aid Network

The Lincoln-Sudbury Mutual Aid Network has been formed to offer support services during this time, specifically for Lincoln and Sudbury residents. Their informational flier includes links to many other resources including neighborhood aid networks. In addition, Massachusetts has established a resource hotline for anyone in need of services. Dial 211 day or night to be connected to someone who can help you locate the services that you need.

Hope In The Face Of A Pandemic

Rabbi Yisroel Freeman of Chabad Center of Sudbury delivers a short Chassidic story about one person’s inspiration, when gravely ill, and when there was no hope left. Click here to view the video.