Sunday morning is our primary experience as a community. Children begin with us in worship, for they are full participants. Worship follows a regular, familiar pattern that allows for variety and new experiences. Our time together might be based on scripture readings, world events, interesting themes, special music. We balance joyful noise and quiet reflection, with opportunities for both reflection and participation.
Worship at First Parish can range from a “traditional” worship service with a bible-study-sermon to a Hymn Sing, Poetry Slam, Quaker Meeting, or Healing Service. Most services include two readings, one from the bible and one from another source such as the newspaper, literature, poetry, etc. Special guests bring insight and inspiration to our Sunday mornings, and regular lay participation enriches our time together. The Meetinghouse frequently rings with laughter, and tissues in the pews help deal with occasional tears. It is always the goal of worship to relate to our whole lives, providing stimulation and support for the joys and concerns of life.
Special Worship services at First Parish include Christmas Eve worship at 4 p.m. crafted especially for children, and Lessons and Carols at 11 p.m. that culminate on the stroke of midnight.
In the spring, Easter special worship includes the solemn and moving Maundy Thursday service the Thursday before Easter, and sunrise worship on Westford Common on Easter morning.
A unique FPCU worship tradition is Leaf Raking Sunday. Following a brief worship service in the Meetinghouse, the congregation goes out to rake the leaves of Westford residents in need of this assistance. Our work is our worship!
Other special worship services include Solstice celebrations, outdoor worship, evening Communion, and Longest Night / Blue Christmas services.