Our Ministers and Staff
Reverend Aaron Stockwell Wisman, Senior Minister
The Rev. Aaron M. Stockwell has served as the senior minister of First Parish since August 2020. He is a mostly lifelong resident of Massachusetts except for five years where he served as a minister in Kansas and Texas. His home congregation, the First Parish Church of Groton, ordained Rev. Aaron in June 2015. He is in Full Fellowship as a Unitarian Universalist minister. Rev. Aaron holds degrees from Lesley University and Andover Newton Theological School.
He lives in Framingham with his wife, Lizzie Wisman, and their dog Nox. He explores local conservation land with the above-mentioned beings, cooks with ingredients found at local farmers’ markets, and recently took up small boat sailing. All of that helps him feel connected to this beautiful and broken world in which we live. His passions for congregational life include creating meaningful worship services, teaching how to read poetry as a spiritual practice, and unlocking the metaphors of our world for communal resilience and leadership.
Learn more about Rev. Aaron here.Contact
Elizabeth Murphy, Ministerial Intern
Elizabeth Murphy is pursuing a Master of Divinity degree at Meadville Lombard Theological School, a Unitarian Universalist seminary in Chicago. She will be with First Parish for two years as a ministerial intern. Most recently Elizabeth served as Social Justice Coordinator at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Fairhaven, MA. Her work included developing the New Bedford Immigrant Support Network, an immigrant accompaniment effort partnering volunteer drivers with local people seeking transportation to Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) check-ins and court hearings. In March 2020 her work pivoted to COVID-19 relief efforts. She lead the congregation to help build a robust program delivering food and personal supplies to hundreds of local families facing both COVID-19 diagnoses and food insecurity.
Prior to starting on the path to ministry, Elizabeth worked as an independent college advisor for 15 years. She has served in many volunteer capacities over the years with a focus on local public education, immigration justice, and climate justice. At her home congregation in Fairhaven Elizabeth has served on the Membership Committee and the Social Justice Leadership Team. Elizabeth earned a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Dartmouth College. She loves spending time outdoors, especially in the mountains or at the beach. Elizabeth lives in Dartmouth, Massachusetts with her husband Keith and their two teenagers, Connor and Natalie.
Reverend Mr. Barb Greve, Affiliated Community Minister
The Rev. Mr. Barb Greve earned his Masters of Divinity at Starr King School for the Ministry in 2007 and was credentialed as a Master Level Religious Educator by the UUA in 2011. From August 2017 – June 2020 he served as Co-Moderator to the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations. At present, he serves as a hospice chaplain with Vitas Healthcare and sits on the board of Meadville Lombard Theological School. He has served as an intentional interim/consulting director of lifespan religious education to multiple Unitarian Universalist congregations. Barb has been a member of First Parish in Framingham throughout his life, and signed the membership book as a teen on May 25, 1986. Rev. Mr. Barb was ordained by First Parish on May 31, 2020. He is the new Affiliated Community Minister of First Parish in Framingham.
Dean Arvidson, Music Director & Director of Handbell Choir
Dean is a long time member of First Parish, and a former member of the First Parish Senior Choir. He has been leading online rehearsals and combining music video recordings to share during our online services. He leads the Bell Choir, which practices each Monday night, year-round and the Bell Choir usually provides music for regular services each month.
Dean is a Composer / Performer, teaches several instruments privately, and is the Pianist for Temple Beth Am. Dean started playing piano in 1962 and now plays a lot of different instruments; his main focus is piano.Contact
Lauren Strauss, Director of Religious Exploration
Lauren Strauss became a UU here at First Parish in Framingham. She and her husband, Tom, were members of the choir, and their daughter, Mia, attended religious education programs as well as Framingham Centre Nursery School. Lauren’s calling toward children’s and youth ministries began during her several years as a Youth Advisor and religious education teacher.
In 2011 Lauren accepted a position at First Parish of Watertown as the Director of Religious Education. She served there for 11 years. During that time, she achieved the status of Credentialed Religious Educator (Credentialed level 2018; Associate level 2015) through the UUA RE Credentialing Committee. She served for four years on the New England LREDA (Liberal Religious Educators Association) board and currently serves on the Continental LREDA Board holding the Professional Support portfolio. She is active in local and regional religious educator groups and currently coordinates the annual RE Week at Ferry Beach in Saco, ME.
Lauren is an avid knitter and crafter, a UU theology nerd, and is unapologetically and vehemently anti-racist and anti-oppression. Lauren lives in Framingham with Tom, Mia, Sunny, Shadow, the cat, and Fozzie, an ebullient bundle of fluffy year-old labradoodle.
She can be reached at email@example.com or 508-879-4841.
Sara Morrison Neil, Church Administrator & Membership Coordinator
She has served as Church Administrator & Membership Coordinator since 2014. You may contact Sara about membership, First Parish publications, buildings, grounds, weddings or rentals. Sara helped build the Diversity & Equity Exploration Team as part of strengthening our welcoming congregation. Sara has been a member since 2010, and her son has participated in the RE program since he was two. Sara loved teaching Holy Days and Holidays to the 3&4 grade class, before joining the staff in 2011 as Membership Coordinator. Her passion to help others and make a difference in the world has led her to work in the non-profit sector for thirty years in volunteer management, administration, communications, education programming and event planning. Her previous positions were at the Massachusetts Council of Human Service Providers, The Contemplative Mind in Society and AIDS Action Committee.
Sara has a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Earlham College in Indiana, and a Masters degree in Public Administration from UMass Amherst. She lives with her partner Pat and son Nathan (and cats Evie and Gizmo and the fish) in Framingham and enjoys reading, Sudbury Valley Trustee trails, and kayaking.
Minister Emeritus, The Reverend Dr. Charles A. Gaines
Minister Emeritus, The Reverend Dr. Patrick O’Neill
Director of Religious Education Emerita, Carol M. Greve