We, the Green Sanctuary Committee, encourage individual members to support these practices in church and to strive to incorporate them into daily life.
As a Green Sanctuary-accredited congregation, First Parish has made a commitment to respect and care for our planet Earth.
At First Parish coffee hours and events, we use:

  • Cloth napkins
  • Fairly traded organic coffee and tea
  • Real dishware
  • Real silverware

In our kitchen, we use

  • Non-toxic, responsibly sourced cleaning products
  • Chlorine-free, plant-based dish detergents
  • Eco-friendly hand soap
    In our rest rooms, we use
  • Essential oil-based air freshener
  • Reusable cloth towels
  • Eco-friendly hand soap
  • Paper products made from 100% recycled paper
    In our sanctuary, we use 
  • Programmable thermostat
  • Projection of service components (music, readings, graphics) to reduce
    paper and printing

Throughout the church, we use

  • Green (solar) electricity
  • Energy efficient light bulbs
  • Eco-friendly cleaning products
  • Practices that reduce waste of resources (natural light, use of both sides of paper, water conservation)
  • First Parish recycles paper, cardboard and Styrofoam and hosts a community-wide metal recycling drive annually

The mission of the Green Sanctuary Committee is to promote the Seventh Principle of Unitarian Universalism, respect for the interdependent web of all existence. First Parish was formally recognized by the Unitarian Universalist Association as an Accredited Green Sanctuary in 2010.

The committee meets specific criteria each year to maintain this status. A major accomplishment in 2019 was the construction of a Little Free Library at the church to promote recycling, community, and literacy. 

Committee activities this year:

  •  Conducted a summer service, “Caring for Farmers and the Environment” on July 10, 2022, with Elisa Blanchard from Equal Exchange, and a service on April 16, 2023 entitled “Lighting the Way”, in collaboration with Social Justice Committee member Lisa Troy. This service raised awareness of climate disruption through a series of vignettes performed by BSU theatre students.
  • Promoted Kids to Camp, our ongoing environmental justice project which sends children to NRT Sheep Pasture Nature Camp.
  • Provided Bridging column “Eating for the Earth” monthly.
  • Submitted minutes of meetings to church web site.
  • Delivered CDs and jewel cases to NH facility in July for recycling.
  • Collaborated with East Bridgewater branch of YMCA to create a visual display at the Y educating and encouraging members to replace single use water bottles with sustainable choices.
  • Continued to encourage recycling of glass, plastic, Styrofoam, and paper in the church kitchen and office as well as in the home.
  • Conducted green supply check & replenishment of supplies.
  • Sponsored 13th annual community-wide free metal recycling event to benefit the Bridgewater Food Pantry, in conjunction with Bridgewater Recycling, Inc.
  • Collected plastic newspaper sleeves for repurposing into sleeping mats for the homeless.
  • Promoted use of Equal Exchange Fairly Traded Organic products among church and community members.
  • Oversaw upkeep of Little Free Library.
  • Continued as liaison for Solstice Initiative, our solar energy partner.
  • Researched and purchased solar shades for office.

Committee Members:
Debbie Baumgarten–Chair, Janet Dye, and Ginger Irish