Welcome to First Parish of Norwell!
If you've been perusing our web pages, or perhaps have already come to visit in person and want to find out more about our traditions and community, then let me first say I'm glad you've found us! Secondly, please know that this is a place where questions are as welcome as the people who bring them; we are a community of seekers and we do our best to honor everyone's own experience and life-affirming truth as they find it.
That sounds like a tall order, doesn't it? One might ask if we try to honor each person's truth, then what do we believe in? Some of us believe in God/god(s) (as we define it), some of us find the sacred in nature or in human community, many of us believe in "deeds, not creeds," many of us have regular, private spiritual practices that fulfil us, and others of us believe that simply showing up regularly to church is the best way to contribute and live thoughtful, intentional lives. We all believe there are many different paths to a spiritual and religious life and they don't have to be mutually exclusive. Another thing that binds us together as a religious community is a covenant, or promise, we've made to walk with one another in mutual support and understanding. This covenant is connected to and adapted from the Cambridge Platform of 1648 which set up the guidelines for Puritan Congregational Churches and how their members would relate to one another. As a religious movement, we are deeply steeped in history, but we are not trapped by it.
So how do we offer mutual support and understanding to one another while traveling our own unique spiritual journeys? We come to church on Sundays to share in a common experience and socialize afterwards. We have religious education classes for our youth and adults to explore our beliefs and exchange ideas. We work to put our beliefs out into the world by working with the homeless, raising money for worthwhile causes and groups with whom we partner, we hold vigils for the oppressed, encourage sustainable environmental practices, and we mentor folks in prison. Like most congregations we also have potlucks and game nights. In everything we do, we try our best to care for one another, while continuing to share our ideals of justice and love with the wider community. And, we make mistakes, then we reflect, and try again.
If this sounds like a place where you can explore your spiritual path in the company of others, where you can help to make our world whole, and be fully human, I hope to see and get to know you soon.
Blessings on your journey,