Local Author, Jim Petipaw, talks about his career as a children’s book author

Bedford Lyceum:

April  14 – Local author Jim Petipaw talks about how he began his career as a children’s book author.  Jim has always been creating art. When he was a kid he would often be found drawing cars, animals or boats. Throughout his teen and college years he was creating music as a drummer in a few local bands. About ten years ago Jim’s daughters encouraged him to illustrate and publish a children’s picture book based on a song he co-wrote in high school. This led to the fruition of, “The Cows Go Moo!” Jim also went into the studio and recorded the song that accompanies the book.

“Many Kinds of Prisons: Charles Dickens on American Incarceration and Slavery.”

After Charles Dickens’s 1842 visit to the United States, he wrote about American penal institutions and slavery in his travel book, American Notes. His keen observations, incisive critique, satiric wit, and heartfelt appeal still speak to us today in our age of mass incarceration and institutionalized racism. Our presenter will be Diana Archibald who was the co-curator and lead scholar of the exhibition and the Director of a seven-month slate of public programming for the “Dickens in Lowell” event series, funded by the Theodore Edson Parker Foundation.

Abby Hafer’s discusses her new book “Darwin’s Apostles”

When the discovery of evolution by natural selection was announced to the world, neither of the scientists who discovered it were present at the announcement! When evolution was debated and insults traded at the notorious 1860 meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, the co-discoverers of evolution weren’t there, either!  Who did the hatchet work on behalf of evolution? Why, Darwin’s apostles, of course!  

Abby Hafer’s discusses her new book “Darwin’s Apostles”

When the discovery of evolution by natural selection was announced to the world, neither of the scientists who discovered it were present at the announcement! When evolution was debated and insults traded at the notorious 1860 meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, the co-discoverers of evolution weren’t there, either!  Who did the hatchet work on behalf of evolution? Why, Darwin’s apostles, of course!  

Walking the El Camino

In September 2017 Ginny Crocker and Richard Golembeski spent eight days walking the Way of St. James from Sarria to Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain. Their route covered 80 miles and provided time for reflection, connecting with nature, meeting other “Pilgrims”, and visiting historic sites. Their trip ended at a pilgrim’s mass. Ginny and Richard will show slides and share their experiences.

Clara Schumann: 21st Century Woman in the 19th century with Brad Conner

For a woman to strive for a professional career in the 19th c., they would usually have to assume a male persona to be successful.  Yet, Clara Schumann, broke the rules by retaining her female identity, and becoming an independent artist almost equal to the reputation of the greatest of all pianists, Franz Liszt.  Clara Schumann negotiated the challenges of raising a family as well as caring for and supporting her also famous husband, composer and writer, Robert Schumann.  A strong advocate for her spouse’s music, she supervised the posthumous publication of the definitive edition of his compositions in conjunction with her close friend Johannes Brahms.  Come and hear the story of this amazing artist who overcame all the barriers to become one of greatest pianists of all time whose influence still lingers to the present day.

Author Christian DiSpigna talks about his newest book “Founding Martyr”

Author Christian DiSpigna newest book is about Dr. Joseph Warren titled “Founding Martyr, the Life and Death of Dr. Joseph Warren, American Revolution’s Lost Hero”.   Mr. Di Spigna will talk about this leading revolutionary whose ideals helped formulate the reasons for a revolution.  Had he lived, had he not been killed at the battle on Breed’s Hill, his name would be as famous or perhaps even more famous than George Washington’s. This event is being co-sponsored by The Bedford Historical Society.

Revolver: The Beatles in Transition by Ben Sears, an ardent Beatles fan.

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band is the most celebrated of the Beatles albums, but the one that preceded it, Revolver, while easily overlooked, is significant in the group’s development.  Today’s Lyceum will look at some of the new things the Beatles were doing as a studio band and how they were part of their transition from a performing band to the ground-breaking studio group they became.  

Star Island, Isles of Shoals – Ten Miles Out of Portsmouth

“Star Island was founded on the traditions of Unitarian Universalism and the United Church of Christ. We strive to contribute to our world by providing a sacred and meaningful space for a vibrant intergenerational community.” From the website starisland.org. You may have wondered about it for years.  Hear about the variety of different conferences from First Parish parishioners who have just been to Star for the first time and those who go every year: Arts, History, Science and Religion, International Affairs, Yoga, Quilting, Dancing, Music, Family Weeks, Youth, Young Adults and more. Learn about personal retreats, scholarship opportunities and work and volunteer opportunities.  We will show lots of photos to bring the Island to life.  You will hear from a variety of Star Island Attendees and will have an opportunity to have your questions answered.

Music Over There: The History of World War I through Song Lyrics

First Parish Music Director, Brad Conner, will talk about World War I in honor of the centenary of the end of the war on November 11, 1918. An expert of the history of American popular song, Brad will present songs which chronicle the progression of the war through clever wordplay and sometimes even unexpected humor. Be prepared to hear a few songs you know by Irving Berlin, George M. Cohan, and others, but other songs you didn’t know existed addressing the darker side of the war including songs which were banned during the height of war fever. Ben Sears and Cynthia Mork will join Brad for live performances.  

Due Process Under Attack

 “Due Process Under Attack”  presented by Sudbury attorney Susanne Gilliam

Attorney Susanne Gilliam will be talking about her week volunteering with detained asylum seeking parents in El Paso. These parents had been separated from their minor children and held in detention for several months. While Ms. Gilliam has a solo practice focused on elder law and mediation in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, she was moved to volunteer because of the agony of both parents and children separated at the border. She worked to collect information, and provide insight into the immigration process the parents were caught in. There will be time for questions at the end of the discussion, as well as handouts describing “next steps” for those who would like to become involved. 

WhaleCoast Alaska UU Tour

WhaleCoast Alaska UU Tour   Dee Russell, presenter

WhaleCoast Alaska is a Unitarian Universalist eco-cultural and spiritual program for people who are looking for a more authentic Alaskan experience. WhaleCoast Alaska is operated in cooperation with four UU Alaska fellowships – Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau, and Sitka – that provide home stays, dinner parties, activities, and transportation for the guests. All while seeing the sights and the wildlife of Alaska. Dee Russell will relate her experience on the WhaleCoast Alaska tour she took in July 2018. Complete with pictures, she will give the good, the bad, and the fabulous.

Adventures at Home

Adventures at Home  presented by  Kathleen Walker and Mike Lally

Enjoy having visitors from all over the world who pay you to stay or work in your gardens for free?  How about having free house sitters to watch your pets and feed your plants while you go on a Holistic Health Cruise?  Kathleen and Mike have been “living the life” at home (most of the time) while saving money and improving their property.  They get to have real time chats with people from many countries and have made great friends from all over – all while staying at home.  

Climate Change: The science and the Evidence

Climate Change: The Science and the Evidence – Bob McClatchly

This presentation will discuss the science behind Climate Change with an effort to communicate with non-scientists.  After a brief discussion of the science and the “Greenhouse Effect”, the evidence for climate change will be presented:  Carbon Dioxide Increase, Increasing temperature, Sea Level Rise, Glacier Melting, Ocean Warming and Acidification, etc.  The presentation will end with some thoughts on what should be done on a National, Local and Personal level if we are to deal with this global problem.  We will be meeting in the Common Room from 9:00-9:50.  

Alternatives to Violence Project

Alternatives to Violence Project, AVP –  an international volunteer program that enables participants to deal with potentially violent situations in new and creative ways. AVP started in Green Haven Prison, New York in 1975 and currently operates in prisons, schools, and communities throughout the country and in conflict situations worldwide.  We will be meeting in The Common Room from 2-4PM.  

Mother’s Out Front Presentation

Have you wondered about the red and blue Home Energy Assessment yard signs popping up around Bedford and in neighboring towns? Mothers Out Front is promoting these no-cost Mass Save assessments as a way to reduce our collective carbon footprints. Come learn what it’s all about, what you can expect, why it helps, and how Bedford will get a $35 donation towards middle school solar panels with each assessment!

Living Landscapes: Restoring Natural Cycles, Growing Food and Cooling the Planet

This Sunday: Living Landscapes: Restoring Natural Cycles, Growing Food and Cooling the Planet

Bedford resident, Janet Powers, will be presenting Living Landscapes: Restoring Natural Cycles, Growing Food and cooling the Planet at The Bedford Lyceum.  She’ll be sharing her thoughts on truly living our 7th principle while finding joy and beauty in reconnecting with our biological selves and this wild and glorious world around us. The presentation will explore our current relationship to the land around us and make suggestions for how we might start cultivating a livable future for all

Bedford Lyceum: Media Based Science Fiction

Come join us for a lively discussion of your favorite “main stream” science
fiction movies or series. This discussion focuses on non-literary works in
science fiction. We’ll explore how current events influenced the
storytelling in “media-based” science fiction franchises. If you enjoyed,
loved (or even despised) Star Wars, Alien, Forbidden Planet and television
shows like Star Trek, Battlestar Gallactica, and Doctor Who — come share
your memories.  This lyceum will be led by Karl Winkler

Bedford Lyceum:Two Minutes to Midnight, Intersectionality, and Threats to Global Peace

Sunday May 20 Two Minutes to Midnight, Intersectionality, and Threats to Global Peace. Sunday May 20, 2018, 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. at First Parish Bedford UU, 75 Great Road, Bedford, MA.  Free. Joseph Gerson, PhD, is the Founding Director of The Campaign for Peace, Disarmament and Common Security (CPDCS) and Vice President of the International Peace Bureau (IPB). Dr. Gerson will speak on the unique dangers of nuclear arms and great power conflict currently confronting our nation along with the work his newly formed organization (CPDCS) is doing to build linkages between social justice movements in the face of these challenges. Dr. Gerson has recently returned from disarmament meetings in Japan, Geneva, and New York, and was the lead U.S. organizer for the international “Two Minutes to Midnight” conference in NYC that featured Noam Chomsky and Daniel Ellsberg.  Just days prior to his May 20th appearance at First Parish, Dr. Joseph and the CPDCS will have convened a seminal meeting of leaders from a wide range of social justice movements to try to identify common ground and shared strategies for this dangerous moment in history.  He will share insights gained at these gatherings. 

Long associated with the American Friends Service Committee as director of its Peace and Economic Security Program, Dr. Gerson organizes and educates at local, national and international levels for peaceful and just alternatives to U.S. foreign and military policies.

Bedford Lyceum: Waste Management

A member of our Parish, Dr. David B. Spencer (Dave), has worked in the recycling and waste-to-energy field for 45 years — first at Raytheon, and then the company he founded, wTe Corporation, with headquarters in Bedford. He will talk about plastics, glass, paper, and metals recycling as well as waste to energy.  He will then open the event to answer recycling questions and misconceptions about recycling —  its benefits and costs and the best ways to recycle.

Bedford Lyceum: Managing Your Digital Afterlife with Kathy Vines

April 22 – Managing Your Digital Afterlife – Kathy Vines
Explore the notion of “digital estate planning,” in which we talk about the electronic connectivity we have with institutions, social media, companies, etc. every day, without thinking… and what happens to all of that after we’re no longer “online” ourselves. Think about the bills you pay electronically, the accounts you have access and passwords to that someone else might need, the social media accounts, even the photos you’ve been storing in a cloud account. All of these can be at risk if you were to become incapacitated or pass away without a Digital Estate Plan. Also think about the things someone else is in charge of in your home, that might leave you vulnerable if they pass without a plan.

Bedford Lyceum: Migration Stories: Yours and Those of Your Ancestors

We are a country of movers…and shakers. This Lyceum will focus on Migration—your stories and poems and songs.  We’ll also include a global perspective on the current migration crisis.  FPB youth and adults who have just come back from the UU-UNO conference, “When Crisis Calls: Advancing Just Migration for All,” will share highlights of what we learned.  Lyceum will be led by Sylvia Cowan

Bedford Lyceum: Update on the March “Shot Heard Around the World” MA Peace Action

On April 16th from 10AM – 6 PM, Massachusetts Peace Action is planning a peaceful nonviolent walk around Hanscom Air Base to highlight the decision to locate the home for the Nuclear Command, Control and Communications there. President Obama initiated at $1trillion dollar upgrade to the US nuclear weapons platform and President Trump is running with it. And part of that $1trillion is slated to come to Hanscom as the Base was chosen to be the Nuclear Command, Control and Communications Integration Directorate, a unit tasked with upgrading all the communications systems tying America’s strategic nuclear forces together. Massachusetts Peace Action along with several members of First Parish Bedford are planning a walk around the Base, the Shout Heard Around the World, in which we will call for nuclear abolition. In 1776, the shot heard around the world was fired within miles of Hanscom. In 2018, we will shout until the world hears us: nuclear disarmament is the way forward.