Upcoming Events

Visit the Follen Monthly Calendar to see all events at Follen

Invitation to One-Act Opera Premieres

Dear friends, 
I am writing to let you know that on Saturday February 15 at 7 p.m. (yes, please note, 7 NOT 8!) and on Sunday February 16 at 3 p.m., the Tufts Opera Ensemble will be presenting the world premieres of my two one-act chamber operas, The Nightingale and the Rose and The Happy PrinceThe libretti are adaptations by yours truly of the two eponymous Oscar Wilde tales: exquisite melancholy/comic stories about the sacrifices required by genuine love in its various guises.

The performances are in the hands of many wonderfully talented Tufts students, under the brilliant and fearless guidance of stage director and voice teacher extraordinaire, Carol Mastrodomenico. The small chamber orchestra is conducted by Tufts Junior Iverson Eliopoulos.

The performances are at Distler Hall in the Granoff Center, Tufts’ music building on Talbot Avenue (part of the Tufts Medford/Somerville campus). They are free – no tickets are required. There is parking available on Talbot Avenue, and in the parking lot behind Granoff – the Tufts police do NOT ticket on performance weekends…
I hope to see many of you there! This is a very exciting occasion for me!
All the very best always,

Join the Choir for April Organ Concert

Concert is Sunday April 26, 4pm

Are you a singer who longs to be part of a choir but can’t make the full-year commitment? Join us for our limited and intensive projects, including our upcoming performance of Antonin Dvorak’s Organ Mass with renowned organist Libor Dudasch (and our newly restored Hook organ!) on Sunday, April 26 at 4pm. Rehearsals start Tuesday, February 11, 7:30-9pm, running every week until the concert. There is a dress rehearsal on Saturday, April 25, from 10am to noon. If you can make it to 6 out of the 11 Tuesday rehearsals plus the concert service, you’re encouraged to join! Practice recordings will be made available to help you learn your parts, and the choir is always welcoming and supportive. Contact Director of Music Vivian Montgomery for further information, musicdirector@follen.org.

Food for Thought

Food for Thought: Continuing Our Religious Journeys
Thursday February 20, 6-8pm, Follen Community Center

The much-enjoyed panels of the last two years continue! This year we explore our faith  journeys with Follenites Harriet Peterson, David Bettencourt and Dottie Vacca, who will reflect on their childhood faith and where they are today. There will be time to listen and time for discussion with the people at your table. Dinner will be served beginning at 6pm. If you require child care please contact Sally Cassells at adultprograms@follen.org by February 17. Otherwise, no RSVP is required – take a night off from cooking dinner and join us for an enjoyable and enriching evening.

Auditions for The Gondoliers

Sunday February 23, 12-1pm, Monday February 24 6:15-8:15pm

A message from Sara DeLong, our beloved Stage Director:

Dear youth music theatre lovers, I hope you will join me in this year’s operetta Gondoliers! There are 14 lead characters open this year to anyone in grade 6 and up, and many ensemble songs in this colorful and joyful musical. We will have weekday rehearsals Mon-Thurs 4-6pm and Saturdays 1-4pm in May leading up to our performances June 12 and 13 at 7:30pm in the Follen Sanctuary. Chorus rehearsals begin February 10 on Mondays 4:45pm-5:30pm. Because of the way this show is written, Gondoliers rehearsals will be full of folks at each rehearsal with tons of opportunity to build memories and friendships, all culminating in a fun performance with costumes and set for the whole community!

Sign up for auditions

Sunday, February 23, 12:00-1:00 p.m. (Sanctuary) or Monday, February 24, after Youth Choir from 6:15-8:15 p.m (Epp Sonin Music Room) 

Attend just your 30 minute slot or come for an extended period and cheer on others in their audition! Audition materials are now available here.

Book Talk: The Lamps of Albarracin

Follen’s Jewish Heritage Group and Adult Programs Committee will host a special program on Sunday March 15. Follenite and author, Edith Scott Saavedra, will discuss discoveries she made while researching her historical novel, The Lamps of Albarracín. Set in 15th Century Spain, the novel tells the story of the final decades of the “convivencia”, the living together of the three Abrahamic faiths through the eyes of a Jewish girl and her family. Please stay tuned for more information on reserving your seat for this program.

In the meantime, we’re happy to announce that several copies of the The Lamps of Albarracín will be available between now and March 15th for loan to anyone interested in reading it in advance. The books can be found on a library shelf, just below the regular “check-out/check-in” shelf, on the right side, as you enter the library. The accompanying clipboard will have a sheet on it so that you may write your name, the date you borrowed it, and the date you return it. Although it isn’t necessary to read the book to participate in the program, we are limiting this one-time “circulation” to 3 weeks so all have an opportunity to read the book before March 15th. There are also four copies in the Minuteman Library Network if you want to reserve a copy through the Library Network.

Here Comes the Auction!


Things to Know Before You Go To this Fun, Fabulous, Fund Raising Event

When is this event?

This year, the auction will be held in the Community Center on Saturday, April 4.  The silent auction and soup start promptly at 5:30pm and the live auction begins around 6:15pm.

Who is invited?

Follenites and friends.  Please bring anyone you think would enjoy the evening. Help us by sending an RSVP.

Will there be food?

Yes!  A light supper of soup, bread, wine and dessert will be available.

Does it cost anything to get in?

No!  Attendance at the auction is free of charge.

What happens at the auction?  There will be both silent and live auction sessions, plus time to eat and mingle with friends.  Our dynamic auctioneers make the live auction bidding a lot of fun.

What types of items are in the auction?

You can check out a sneak peak of last year’s booklet to get an idea! Auction Book 2019 FINAL

Do I have to spend a lot of money?

No!  We have many items that range widely in value, with many items in the $50 – $200 range.  There is no obligation to buy anything.  Many people collaborate while bidding to reduce the price per person.  Plan ahead!

How do I pay?

With cash or check.  Unfortunately, we cannot accept credit cards.  Payment must be made on the night of the auction so bring your checkbook.

I won!  How do I collect my item?

When you check-out, you will receive the name and contact information of the donor of your item.  Winners are responsible for contacting the donors.  Items should be collected and services redeemed before the next auction.

Will there be childcare?

Yes!  Three Follen youth will supervise children. Mac and cheese will be served.  Parents are also welcome to serve their children at the soup and dessert buffet. While not required, it is helpful if you let us know if you will be using childcare.

Where does the money from the auction go?

The auction supports Follen’s annual operating budget.

How can I help?

Volunteer an item or service to be auctioned off, or help with set-up and clean-up, or bring food and drink.  Contact us at auction@follen.org with any donations or questions.

I can’t attend the auction but I still have an item or service I would like to donate?

You do not have to attend the auction to donate.  We will inform you afterwards who purchased your item and how much money it raised for Follen.

We hope to see YOU at the auction!

Jen Vandiver, Auction Chair

Join Our Choirs!

Combined Youth and Children’s Choirs

Adult Choir

Adult Choir is open to everyone. Rehearsals are Tuesdays, 7:30-9pm. Until the Community Center is done, we will meet at the Sacred Heart Lower Level (until construction is complete). New members are welcome!

Read letter from Vivian Montgomery, Director of Music, for more detailed information about Adult Choir. 

Children’s Choir and Youth Choir

Children’s Choir (any and all grades 1-5) is on Mondays 4:00-4:45, starting Monday, September 16, in Sacred Heart’s Lower Level (until construction is complete).

Introduction Session:

Sunday, September 15, 12-12:45pm, Marshman Conference Room.

Read letter from Vivian Montgomery, Director of Music, for more detailed information about Children’s Choir. 

Youth Choir (any and all grades 6-12) is on Mondays 5:15-6:15, starting on Monday September 16, in Sacred Heart’s Lower Level (until construction is complete).

Introduction Session:

Monday, September 16, 6:15-7:15pm, Sacred Heart, after first rehearsal

(RSVP to musicdirector@follen.org for pizza.)

Read letter from Vivian Montgomery, Director of Music, for more detailed information about Youth Choir. 

Choir Connection Time (LIMBO)
Note that this fall we’ll have a 30-minute Choir Connection Buffer 4:45-5:15, for which all choir kids are encouraged to be present. This is a time that we’ll bring together members of both choirs for such special activities as creating a choir covenant, working on solo and small group pieces, playing instruments, or just hanging out and playing games!

Come January, this connection time will be used for working on choruses for our operetta, so it will be required of all operetta participants. Remember, in order to have a lead in the operetta, you need to be in Children’s or Youth Choir for the year.

Please get in touch with Director of Music Vivian Montgomery if you’re interested in joining any choirs or if you have questions – . Looking forward to seeing you all soon for another big year of singing and playing!



Parking, Access, and Safety During Construction

Update from COG (Construction Oversight Group)

Never fear, Follenites! Despite outward appearances, you will be able to get into the Sanctuary during construction!


All the regular lots will be available and we will set aside the Mass Ave. spaces in front of Follen for folks with limited mobility. You can park along the fence on the Waldorf drive, but there won’t be a sidewalk, so take care. Please don’t park on Barnes Place (behind Marshman) – we are keeping the contractors from parking there and ask that you don’t either, at any time. Our neighbors there already have a lot to put up with!
A note about Follen’s parking lot:  please do not park there on weekdays between the hours of 7 and 5.  At those times Waldorf teachers use the left side, and our contractors need the right side available on very short notice for staging equipment and materials.  Feel free to use the lot in the late afternoon, evenings and weekends.
Since parking will be limited at Follen, if you have ever thought about biking to church, this fall would be a great time to try!


The walkway up to the Sanctuary front entry will be compacted dirt, until paving can go in. It will be safe for walking and for walkers. While we have a temporary ramp up to the Marshman floor level, for access to the offices, meeting room and accessible bathroom, we will not be able to have a temporary ramp into the Sanctuary right away. We will have a charming Port-a-Potty to the left of the entry, and of course, there will be bathrooms in the Waldorf School, where we will be having Hospitality Hour!


Please do not go through the fencing and into the construction site…however tempting! It is an active site and we don’t want to slow down our contractors by asking to give tours. We COG folks all have to wear hardhats and close-toed shoes just to have our site meetings: there are too many dangerous conditions to allow tours yet


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Alice and Valerie