who we are
Welcome to First Parish in Hingham, Unitarian Universalist, known as Old Ship Church.
We are a liberal Unitarian Universalist community of about 250 members of all ages. More than 100 children and youth participate in our religious education programming. We worship in an historic Meeting House and we hold religious education classes and gather after services in
our Parish House across the street. Our minister, Rev. Kenneth H. Read-Brown, has been with us for more than 25 years.
Our Meeting House, a National Historic Landmark, has stood on Hingham’s Main Street since 1681. It is the only remaining 17th-century Puritan meeting house in the U.S.
Our community encourages personal spiritual growth through worship, engagement and service to others.
We do not require adherence to a specific creed. We affirm the Unitarian Universalist (UU) Principles and Sources, and we support each individual's unique search for truth and meaning. We are proud that our community is both a "Welcoming Congregation" and a "Green Sanctuary," both official designations from the Unitarian Universalist Association. We cherish diversity of religious backgrounds, racial and cultural identities or backgrounds, ethnicities, national origins, ages, ranges of ability, sexual orientations, gender expressions, financial means, educations, and political perspectives. We welcome all to share in congregational life.
tours of Old Ship Meeting House
We love to give tours! From September through June, tours are by appointment only. Please call the office in advance with a minimum of two days notice if at all possible. We have volunteer tour guides who are happy to come and give a tour. Old Ship is open on Sunday mornings for worship and anyone is welcome to come early (9am-10am) to view the inside of the building.
Contact information to arrange a tour:
Phone Number: 781-749-1679
To receive weekly e-updates, sign up here.
MINISTER'S BLOG: Musings etc.
Click here for directions
We are very pleased to welcome you to Old Ship. We want you to feel comfortable among us.
From September through mid June, our worship service, held in the Meeting House at 90 Main St., begins promptly at 10:25 am and lasts about an hour.
Childcare is available before and
during Sunday services.
Our Parish House, where we hold religious education classes, child care, fellowship hour,
meetings, etc. is across Main Street from the Meeting House at 107 Main St.
Click here for what to expect on Sunday
upcoming worship services
Sunday, May 8
On this Mother's Day we continue our tradition of a "Mostly Music Sunday". Ken's sermon will be "Quilting a Life". How have our mothers and grandmothers pieced together their lives? What might we all learn from their examples?
Sunday, May 15
"Can We Awaken Too?" May's full moon is the traditional time to celebrate the Buddha's
birthday and his time of enlightenment or
awakening. Maybe it is a good time also to
celebrate our own potential to awaken to greater serenity and happiness. What's the secret? The service will be held in the Fellowship Hall to precede the Annual Meeting of our First Parish Old Ship Church.
Sunday, May 22
"The Religious Way is the Deep Way" affirmed Unitarian religious educator Sophia Fahs many years (decades actually) ago. It is still true, and will be the theme of this service.
Songs and stories and reflections for all ages from Ken ReadBrown and Beverly Tricco will help us celebrate growth and learning across the lifespan the
deep way over a lifetime. The service will include a child dedication for one of our newest Old Shippers, and also our annual recognition of Old Ship high school graduates.
Our monthly outreach offering will be given to the community service garden program at Holly Hill Farm. This special garden bed at Holly Hill farm in Cohasset is planted, tended, and harvested to provide fresh vegetables for Father Bill's shelter for homeless adults in
Old Shippers can also help with the garden by volunteering to work to prepare the
garden bed for planting, from 13pm.
Carpools will leave Old Ship at 12:45pm.
Sunday, May 29
On this Memorial Day Sunday, Ken's sermon title is derived from a Coleman Barks' poem,
which in turn cites a line from Aeschylus' "Agamemnon": "Ox on Our Tongues?" Do we too easily accept endless war, escalating arms sales, and the potential for a resumed nuclear arms race as the fate of our times?
May Breakfast and Plant Sale
May 7, 2016 7:30am - 1:00pm
A long-time tradition, May Breakfast features a pancake, egg and sausage breakfast (7:30-11) as well as a vibrant spring plant sale with garden-related crafts & manure! People from throughout Hingham enjoy a morning of good food and company while welcoming the rites of spring.
Old Ship Book Group
Monday, May 9 at 1:00 and 7:00 pm
We'll discuss the 2015 National Book Award-winning Between the World and Me, by Ta-Nehisi Coates, a powerful and moving depiction of what it means to be a black man in America today. This group will meet monthly, but you may attend as you are able. Occasionally, it will be open to our South Shore neighbors: please invite your friends to join us for this thought-provoking discussion!
First Parish Annual Meeting
Sunday, May 15 at noon
Candlelight Concert presents:
The Claremont Trio
Sunday, May 15, 2016 at 4pm
Music for piano, cello and violin. Founded at Juilliard in 1999, the Claremont Trio opened the Isabella Steward Gardner Museum's concert hall and performed here previously, in 2014.
Click here to see a video.
.• All events are listed on the calendar
• This month's e-newsletter here
meeting house preservation
Old Ship is proud to announce that the Meeting House Restoration Project completed in 2014 has received a significant award: The 2015 Massachusetts Historical Commission Preservation Award, given for Restoration and for Stewardship. You may read the full nominating document complete with photos describing the scope of the work done on the project here. Congratulations to everyone who worked on and supported this spectacular project!
Curious about the early history of Old Ship
and of Hingham?
Purchase this excellent DVD, televised in 1998 on The History Channel®. Details here…