On the evening of Sunday, June 12, Rev. Stephanie May sent the following message to the First Parish Community:

Dear First Parish Community,

Yesterday a team of youth and adults led by Haley Kulow, our youth coordinator, represented First Parish in Wayland in the Boston Pride Parade. As an expression of our commitment as a Welcoming Congregation, their participation sought to honor and celebrate the LGBTQ community within and beyond our walls. 

Then, this morning we woke to the news of a mass shooting at Pulse, a club in Orlando viewed by many as a safe haven for the LGBTQ community. I don’t believe that I am alone in feeling grieved and heartsick by this juxtaposition of the celebration with the hateful killing of so many. In response, a small group gathered this evening on short notice to share our sorrow for the losses, our frustrations with being here again, and our hope that effective gun safety laws will stop these mass killings. 

As we absorb the magnitude of this horrific event, may we respond with compassionate thoughts and prayers for those who have suffered deep personal losses.  And, may we remain outraged as we seek ways to respond with action to effect change. 

The First Parish rainbow flag remains flying on the steps of the Meetinghouse as an expression of our support for the LGBTQ community and our grief for all those that mourn in Orlando.

May we seek peace.