Posted in Serving Others

Kindness Rocks at WCUC!

  • October 26, 2017

If you see some brightly colored rocks in the Welcome Garden next to West Concord Union Church, you’ve just discovered WCUC Sunday School’s “Kindness Rocks Project.” This simple yet powerful way of sharing messages of hope originated in the mind and heart of Megan Murphy, a mother of three from the Cape going through a life transition.

Each day she would walk on the beach looking for signs that closing her business and going back to school was the right decision. One day in 2013, she was inspired to decorate five ordinary beach rocks with messages of encouragement and return them to the beach. The next night, knowing nothing about their origin, one of Murphy’s close friends texted her a photograph of a rock she’d found on the beach with the message, “You’ve Got This!” It was just the sign Murphy needed to continue on her path. Just four years later, there are kindness rocks being made all over the world from the Cape to New Zealand!

The WCUC Sunday School decided to adopt this Kindness Rocks Project as a way of resisting hate and spreading hope within our community. Come on by the Welcome Garden and check out the messages our children have created. Feel free to take a rock with you or add one of your own. But you might want to come over soon! Kindness rocks have a way of finding new homes quickly! For more information about the Kindness Rocks Project and how to make your own rocks go to:

Youth Get to Work: Baking, Packing, and Painting…Oh My!

  • May 17, 2017

It was a very busy day on Sunday for the WCUC Youth!   In just a little over two hours, they packed up for kitchen in preparation for the renovation, painted gratitude prayer flags which will become part of a larger church-wide project happening next Sunday, and hosted a bake sale that raised $276.00 for Greater Lowell’s Habitat for Humanity.  Many hands do indeed make work lighter and we are so grateful to have such a helpful and committed group of young people at our church!


Serving and Socializing on Spring Break

  • April 19, 2017


The youth got busy this week helping out some neighbors in need and tackling a couple of church clean up projects.  Several of our teenagers met at Polly and Keith Jenkins Man home to help wth some packing and other preparations for their upcoming move.  Others joined Candy Carr at the church to clean out the deacon’s kitchen and do some yard work in the Welcome Garden.  In celebration of their efforts. we joyfully ended the evening in town with pizza and ice cream and then returned to church for a few rounds of the hide and seek game called Sardines which has become our youth group favorite.  A fun night with some of the most thoughtful and playful teens I know!

*A note of thanks from Polly and Keith:

We are very grateful to all the youth who helped us out on Tuesday.  It was a pleasure to get to know them and, as two of the more senior members of WCUC, we thank them for their generous gift of young muscles and energy.

‘Tis the Season to Love and Bake

  • December 12, 2016


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The youth at WCUC love kicking off the holiday season with their annual pie baking with Mrs. Schummers. This year was no different.  Together they baked 18 apple pies and wrote cards for people in our congregation who could use some extra cheer at Thanksgiving this year.   Their baking efforts continue into December when they come together to bake up some treats for youth group graduates, in their first year at college, who are getting ready for exams. This year, Emily Barkovic was the lucky recipient!






Our Neighbors: Listening, Learning, and Loving

  • December 12, 2016

In early November, the youth traveled to Wayland to visit the Islamic Center of Boston for a half day workshop which included a tour of their facility, education about their faith practices, a documentary film on Islam in America Today followed by a question and answer session.  We were joined by youth and adults from other churches in the surrounding towns.   It was a “packed house” filled with generous spirit, informative presentations, and gracious hospitality.img_7816


In December, our new friends at this mosque received a horrible, hate-filled letter from an anonymous writer who signed it from “Americans for a Better Way”.  Reading about this hate crime broke our hearts.  In response, the youth joined together in creating two large baskets of homemade baked goods and a banner/card that expressed our support and solidarity.  Added to this, were many beautiful cards made by the Middler Class and also a card signed by others in our congregation.  After church on Sunday, two of our church families drove to the mosque with our gifts and joined hands and hearts with hundreds of other people who were there for a community wide peace rally.   It was so moving and powerful to witness the loud and proud conviction that “Love is Stronger than Hate”.







CROP Walkers Hit the Streets of Concord

  • October 25, 2016

Sunday was a beautiful day for the CROP Walk.  WCUC Youth joined others from the community on this 7K walk around town in an effort to raise awareness and funds for local and global efforts to alleviate hunger.  We are more than half way to our team goal of raising $1000.00.  There is still time to donate, so please consider supporting this important cause.


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Spring Flings: Youth Engage in Service, Spiritual, and Social Outings

  • May 17, 2016

Spring has sprung!  The warm, sunny weather may have been late this year but that didn’t dampen the spirits of our youth group.  In April, we had a fun outing to Chunky’s dinner/theater in Nashua where we enjoyed tasty food and watched the suspenseful modern version of The Jungle Book.  We also went to play with the kids at the Maynard Boys and Girls Club to help them out with their school vacation program.  In early May, we joined the WCUC Easter in Action team to walk in the Minuteman Arc March and collectively raised over $2000.00 for this great organization.   The next day, the youth learned about the Bread for the World organization and wrote letters to members of Congress advocating for increased funding to support better nutritional programs for women and children around the world.  They then used what they had learned to help other members of congregation, young and old, write letters too!




Adding to all of this excitement, twelve of our older youth celebrated their year-long work in confirmation class as our younger youth are currently making plans to share their voices, gifts, and wisdom in Children and Youth Sunday which will be celebrated on June 5th.

In the midst of all of these social and service-related events, the youth have been meeting regularly to study God’s word, write in their prayer journals, and reflect together on how the Easter story of Jesus’s resurrection applies to us today.IMG_6457 IMG_6444

Youth Lend a Hand at Local Organizations

  • February 25, 2016

During school vacation week, several members of the youth group and some of the confirmation mentors took time out to work at two local service organizations.  On Monday, we shelved donations and packed kids’ bags at Open Table Food Pantry in Maynard. And on Saturday, we worked at Household Goods in Acton doing a wide variety of jobs including sorting donations, untangling hangers, vacuuming rugs and couches, sweeping floors, and helping clients carry furniture and other goods out to their trucks.  Both of these organizations do so much for our community.  It was heart warming to witness the services offered and eye opening to be reminded about the needs of our neighbors.   We are so grateful for these opportunities to help make a difference.





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Youth Help to Ready Y2Y Shelter for Opening in Cambridge

  • January 5, 2016


On Saturday, December 19th, several youth from WCUC traveled to Harvard Square in Cambridge to join with area college students in getting a new shelter for young adults ready to open its doors.  They moved, cleaned and assembled furniture, cleaned and painted walls, and witnessed first hand what vision, determination, and many supporters can do to make one community a safer and more humane place to be.

Y2Y is the only shelter of its kind in the nation in that it is designed and operated by young adults and it exclusively serves 18-24 year olds.  Co-founders and recent Harvard Graduates, Sam Greenberg and Sarah Rosenkrantz, explained to us that beds are desperately needed for this underserved age population because 1) many do not feel safe staying in adult shelters 2) this is when they age out of the foster care system 3) many are LGBTQ people who have been isolated or rejected from family who might otherwise provide safe shelter.

The shelter passed inspection on Monday, December 21st and opened its doors on Tuesday, December 22nd.  We were so fortunate to be a small part of what took over a year to create.  After many months of creating the vision, securing a location and finding support, raising funds, establishing a team of advisors and completely renovating a church basement, Sam and Sarah seemed blissfully exhausted to have reached this final stage.  We look forward to a return trip one day soon to offer our help again and to perhaps meet some of the guests at Y2Y.

For more information you can visit their website:

Or read this recent story published recently in the Boston Globe:

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