Pastors' Blog


The Oasis - June 19, 2019

June 19, 2019
Rev. Estelle Margarones “Where is God in this situation?” is a question I learned to ask in my chaplaincy training and it serves me well to this day. No matter what you’re going through, God is always there.   If you’re willing to do so, I&...

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The Oasis - June 12, 2019

June 12, 2019
Pastor Dan Hollis Are you worried about something today? Are you afraid of something coming down the pike? Are anxieties piling up? Are people standing against you? Was that tax refund not the promised land you had hoped for? Do you have to do something or go somewhere that&rsqu...

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The Oasis - June 5, 2019

June 05, 2019
Rev. Estelle Margarones Last Sunday after church, six of us from First Parish attended the United Church of Christ (UCC) York Association meeting, a gathering of pastors and delegates from the 21 UCC churches in York County. I arrived dutifully during the registration time (...

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The Oasis - May 29, 2019

May 29, 2019
May 29, 2019 Rev. Estelle Margarones When I was little, my mother had a coffee cup collection. There must have been 20 or 30 mugs in our dish cabinet. As a child, I knew she loved her coffee. My siblings and I would get her a mug for every birthday, for Mother's Day, and for ...

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The Oasis - May 22, 2019

May 22, 2019
Dan Hollis      Once upon a time, there was a pig. This pig built a house for herself out of wood: logs, fenceposts, whatever she could find. The finished product didn’t look half-bad; it certainly wasn’t no straw  house, no sir.  ...

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The Oasis - May 15, 2019

May 15, 2019
Philippians 4:6–7.Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jes...

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The Oasis - May 9, 2019

May 09, 2019
May 9, 2019 by Pastor Dan Hollis      I once knew an 82-year-old woman who woke up one day and decided that she needed to help the homeless. It was nothing like anything she had ever done in her life, but it was something she just knew she needed to do. Now, sh...

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The Oasis - May 1, 2019

May 01, 2019
by Pastor Dan Hollis      As windy as it can get here on the seacoast, we can’t actually see the wind. We can see the leaves move and we can feel it on our faces and we can hear it whistling around outside the house, but we can’t see the&...

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The Oasis - April 24, 2019

April 24, 2019
April 24, 2019 by Pastor Dan Hollis      There’s a movie I loved when I was young called “Titan A.E.” It told the story of the human race after our planet was destroyed and we were left to wander the stars without a home, trying to scrape out ...

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The Oasis - April 17, 2019

April 17, 2019
     I love finding out something I didn’t know before. That feeling of “huh, neat,” you get when you learn some new factoid. For instance, did you know that just like humans, cows moo in regional accents? Or that in 1915 a man named Cecil Chubb b...

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The Oasis - April 10, 2019

April 10, 2019
April 10, 2019 Pastor Dan Hollis      What are you waiting for?      No, I don’t mean that as an accusation. I’m legitimately curious: what is it that you are waiting for?      This time of year, I’d say it&rsqu...

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The Oasis - April 3, 2019

April 03, 2019
Pastor Dan Hollis      Recently I went on a drive with some friends to Burlington, Vermont. It’s more than a three-hour drive one-way, and as luck would have it one of my friends was happy to be the driver as long as the rest of us paid for gas.   &n...

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The Oasis - March 27, 2019

March 27, 2019
March 27, 2019 Dan Hollis      What do you do when you need to focus? When there’s something you need to think long and hard about, or there’s something important you need to get done, and your mind just won’t settle. You’ve got all kind...

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The Oasis - March 20, 2019

March 20, 2019
Rev. Estelle Margarones I must have been about 6 years old and I was out with my aunt. I wanted a package of crayons, but didn't have any money. She offered to lend me the 32 cents if I would pay her back. I did and that was my first purchase ever. Fast forward a year or two. I ...

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The Oasis - March 13, 2019

March 13, 2019
     It’s not an uncommon sight at my house, the sight of dishes slowly but steadily accumulating. Many homes have excellent discipline surrounding dirty dishes, and as with many things the simplest solution is often the most effective: do the dishes after ev...

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The Oasis - March 6, 2019

March 07, 2019
Pastor Dan Hollis       “Breathe deep, seek peace.” A favorite mantra of mine since I was a kid, taken from a favorite book by James Gurney.      “Ruach.” An ancient Hebrew word meaning wind, breath, or spirit.   &nb...

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The Oasis - February 27, 2019

February 27, 2019
Rev. Estelle Margarones Ash Wednesday is a week from today. It marks the start of the Lenten Season, the time leading up to Easter. Lent is a reflective time where Christians consider the life and ministry of Jesus. We may choose to give something up for Lent as a way to ho...

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The Oasis - February 20, 2019

February 20, 2019
Rev. Estelle Margarones Early last Thursday morning, there was some excitement at the parsonage. I distinctly remember hearing the church bells “bong bong bong” at three AM. 'Uh-oh', I thought, 'this isn't good'. You see, I'd worked all day, had a committee meeting, ...

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The Oasis - February 6, 2019

February 06, 2019
February 6, 2019 Rev. Estelle Margarones It's back to winter today, but the beginning of the week reminded me of March and I found myself wondering what the yard will look like this spring and summer. What is even now, gathering energy to be reborn and renewed? Sometimes the ...

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The Oasis - January 23, 2019

January 23, 2019
January 23, 2019 Pastor Dan Hollis      The snowy season is home to some of my favorite and least-favorite things. As much as I dislike being cold all the time, and how hard it is to drive even as the plow operators work tirelessly to clear roads and make life ...

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The Oasis - January 16, 2019

January 16, 2019
Dear friends, I remember a convention I went to in Boston. I don't remember the year or the even the speaker's name, but what left a lasting impression is the speaker's story. She was over six feet tall. She talked about being a teenager and having to wear men's clothing. Women'...

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The Oasis - January 9, 2019

January 09, 2019
Dear friends, On Sunday we celebrated Epiphany, a special day in the church that marks the time when the Magi arrived to pay homage (respect) to infant or toddler Jesus. My message was based on Matthew, chapter 2, verses 1-16. I focused on the star as light in darkness, pointing...

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The Oasis - January 2, 2019

January 02, 2019
January 2nd, 2019 Rev. Dan Hollis 2 Kings 2: 23-24 [The prophet Elisha] went up from there to Bethel; and while he was going up on the way, some small boys came out of the city and jeered at him, saying, “Go away, baldhead! Go away, baldhead!” When he turned arou...

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The Oasis - December 27, 2018

December 27, 2018
December 27th, 2018 by Pastor Dan Hollis Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time t...

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The Oasis - December 20, 2018

December 20, 2018
Matthew 25:35-40 “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ Then the ri...

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The Oasis - December 13, 2018

December 13, 2018
John 20:24-29 But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the m...

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The Oasis - December 5, 2018

December 05, 2018
Luke 3:2-6 During the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, as it is written in the book of the words...

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The Oasis - November 28, 2018

November 28, 2018
Job 1:1-3 There was once a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job. That man was blameless and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil. There were born to him seven sons and three daughters. He had seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of ...

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The Oasis - November 14, 2018

November 14, 2018
Acts 16:25-28 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was an earthquake, so violent that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’...

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The Oasis - November 8, 2018

November 08, 2018
Job 41:9-14, 25-27 Any hope of capturing it will be disappointed; were not even the gods overwhelmed at the sight of it? No one is so fierce as to dare to stir it up. Who can stand before it? Who can confront it and be safe? —under the whole heaven, who? I will not keep si...

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The Oasis - November 1, 2018

November 01, 2018
Job 41:9-14, 25-27 Any hope of capturing it will be disappointed; were not even the gods overwhelmed at the sight of it? No one is so fierce as to dare to stir it up. Who can stand before it? Who can confront it and be safe? —under the whole heaven, who? I will not keep si...

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The Oasis - October 24, 2018

October 24, 2018
Genesis 7:17-19, 23-24 The flood continued forty days on the earth; and the waters increased, and bore up the ark, and it rose high above the earth. The waters swelled and increased greatly on the earth; and the ark floated on the face of the waters. The waters swelled so mighti...

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Pastor's Pen - September 19, 2018

September 19, 2018
"They will hunger no longer, nor thirst anymore; nor will the sun beat down on them, nor any heat; for the Lamb in the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and will guide them to springs of the water of life; and God will wipe every tear from their eyes."   &nb...

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Pastor's Pen - September 12, 2018

September 12, 2018
Pastor’s Pen  “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”       Jeremiah 29:11  Ten years ago over a glass o...

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Pastor's Pen - September 6, 2018

September 06, 2018
September 6, 2018  The Pastor’s Pen              “Jesus was about thirty years old when he began his work…Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness, where for f...

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Pastor's Pen - August 29, 2018

August 29, 2018
Philippians 4:12-14 I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. In...

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Pastor's Pen - August 22, 2018

August 22, 2018
The Pastor’s Pen                        “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”          &nb...

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Pastor's Pen - August 15, 2018

August 15, 2018
August 15, 2018 Pastor’s Pen            “When I consider the heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars that you have established, what is humankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?&rdq...

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Pastor's Pen - August 8, 2018

August 08, 2018
The Pastor’s Pen                 “The Kingdom of God is like: a mustard seed, yeast, a pearl, a chlld…”            &nb...

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Pastor's Pen - August 1, 2018

August 01, 2018
August 1, 2018 Pastor’s Pen   Romans 12:9-13 Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be ...

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Pastor's Pen - July 25, 2018

July 25, 2018
The Pastor’s Pen  “O sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth!”   Psalm 96:1  One of my favorite readings at memorial services turns out to be a modern day parable written by Alice Walker. She may not have intended it so...

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Pastor's Pen - July 18, 2018

July 18, 2018
July 18, 2018  The Pastor’s Pen  “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”  Psalm 73:26  At first the death of a loved one may seem a cruel intrusion on such a ripe and gorgeous summ...

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Pastor's Pen - July 10, 2018

July 10, 2018
July 10, 2018 Pastor’s Pen                             “You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; You have loosed my sa...

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Pastor's Pen - July 5, 2018

July 05, 2018
Psalm 90:13-17 Turn, O Lord! How long? Have compassion on your servants! Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, so that we may rejoice and be glad all our days. Make us glad as many days as you have afflicted us, and as many years as we have seen evil. Let your work...

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Pastor's Pen - June 27, 2018

June 27, 2018
Matthew 18:1-5 At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” He called a child, whom he put among them, and said, “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingd...

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Pastor's Pen - June 20, 2018

June 20, 2018
The Pastor’s Pen “Jesus told them many things in parables, saying: ‘a farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up…Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produc...

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Pastor's Pen - June 6, 2018

June 06, 2018
1 John 3: 18-22 Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action. And by this we will know that we are from the truth and will reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. ...

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Pastor's Pen - May 30, 2018

May 30, 2018
May 30, 2018 Pastor’s Pen “Do unto others as you would have them do to you. Love one another and know that I will be with you.” Matthew 7:12 The season of testing begins. Visitors from away backed up traffic on Route 1 over the weekend in the annual mad dash ...

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Pastor's Pen - May 23, 2018

May 23, 2018
May 23, 2018 Pastor’s Pen  “And (Jesus) took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”  Luke 22:19 NIV  We experience deep emotion before we le...

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Pastor's Pen - May 16, 2018

May 16, 2018
Pastor’s Pen  “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you...

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Testimony - Nelson Walter

May 11, 2018
Please take a moment to read this inspirational message by Nelson Walter, a member of the First Parish Church Open and Affirming Task Force.   Testimony by Nelson Walter April 29, 2018 I’m Nelson Walter and I’m part of the committee evaluating whether it&rsqu...

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Pastor's Pen - May 9, 2018

May 09, 2018
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.”                              &n...

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Sharing Good News

December 29, 2017
Join us weekly for Vital Conversations on Race, a cooperative venture between York-Ogunquit Methodist Church, St. George's Episcopal Church and First Parish Church. We continue this Lenten series at the York Public Library from 10-11:30 each Saturday though March 25. Participant...

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If You're Reading This Messageā€¦

December 29, 2017
All the best thrillers include a phrase like "If you're reading this message, it means…" It's either a plea from a character expecting their own death, or a good-bye from someone who successfully made their getaway, or a bad-guy who's about to monologue their whole plan be...

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