Mandy Beal is in her final year of the Master’s of Divinity program at Andover Newton Theological School, pursuing ordination as a Unitarian Universalist minister. Mandy was a social worker prior to entering divinity school, and has an MSSW from the University of Texas at Austin. Her career was focused on the administration of programs that helped disadvantaged adults find and maintain meaningful employment. Mandy looks forward to developing her ministerial skills at First Parish in Lincoln through leading worship and providing pastoral care, among other things. She is a progressive Christian Unitarian Universalist who is committed to social justice, liberation theology, and deep wrestling with life’s greatest questions. Mandy lives in Jamaica Plain with her partner, Jesse, a geriatric pug, and an enormous grey cat.
Rev. Manish Mishra-Marzetti has over twenty years of professional experience, encompassing the fields of ministry, diplomacy, and education. In addition, he’s an accomplished student of psychology. Manish has served six Unitarian Universalist congregations in varying forms of ministry, and before that was an active lay leader and Board member at one of the denomination’s most historic churches.
Having traveled extensively throughout the world, Manish has lived in India, Oman, Finland, and for brief periods in Switzerland. This international exposure gave him the opportunity to live in countries where Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, and Christianity have helped define the cultures. He brings this multi-religious appreciation to his ministry, drawing on a variety of faith traditions and other sources of inspiration in his preaching and leadership of worship.
As a former educator, Manish has a deep sense of love for our community’s children and youth, and an appreciation of how spiritual growth and development are lifelong processes for all of us. As a former diplomat, he is an accomplished preacher and an effective public spokesperson. Serving in the career that speaks most deeply to his heart, Manish brings to our congregation spiritual leadership that is dynamic, thought-provoking, and inspiring.
We hope that you will join us for Sunday worship and the opportunity to get to know our senior minister better first-hand.
Acting Director of Religious Education
Kathy Cronin was part of the last graduating class from Rose Hawthorne High School, an all girl parochial school, in Concord MA in 1970. Kathy then attended college in New Rochelle NY. Kathy felt her college experience was a non plus event. She pursued a career in retail banking in Boston until a robbery occurred at her branch and a guard was killed. Realizing that money made people do crazy things she embarked on a 20 year food service career, actually serving as the first chef at the small and intimate Lincoln Crossing, restaurant situated next to the tracks in Lincoln. Kathy co-owned and operated a restaurant on Cape Cod, Chanterelle and had her own catering company, Sweet Tooth on the Loose.
After the arrival of her first two boys Kathy decided the take her apron off and pursue the teaching sector. She served as the after school program director at her children’s elementary school and taught culinary classes at a local technical High School. She became a member of a Unitarian Universalist congregation in Brewster in 1985, served on the Religious Education Council and taught in the Sunday school until she became the Religious Education Coordinator in 1994 and then director in 1996. She served for 14 years in this capacity until she moved to Durham NC to take the position of Director of Lifespan Faith Development for a large UU Fellowship. After five years, she returns to Massachusetts to be closer to her aging, vibrant mother who resides on Cape Cod. Kathy has three grown sons living in an around Metro Boston and her precious dog, Finley, whom she rescued from a South Carolina kill shelter.
Gert McDermott grew up in Newtonville, the eldest child of Italian immigrants. After high school she settled down with her husband to raise a son, and took a job with Seaside Associates, a non-profit organization in Weston. She remained there for 11 years, assuming the role of Office Manager as the organization grew. During that time she earned an Office Management Certificate from Mt. Ida College.
After leaving Seaside, Gert spent three years with a business in Concord before returning to the non-profit world by joining the staff of The First Parish in October 1997. She enjoys serving the church community, and when she’s in the office, her door is always open to visitors.
As a member of the local chapter of the Association of UU Administrators, Gert has served as a co-chair and is currently the treasurer.
Gert and her husband live in the Nashoba Valley, and their son lives nearby. She spends part of each summer touring the nation on her motorcycle, and enjoys reading, baking bread, and doing home repairs and renovations.
Music Director & Organist
Ian Watson came to First Parish in September 2012. Trained at the Royal Academy of Music in London, he is a top church musician and educator, with wide-ranging experience embracing novice, advanced and professional levels. His most recent church post was the Music Director at Cathedral of St. Paul in Worcester, MA. He is also an internationally-known, dynamic, multi-faceted music professional who maintains an active performing and recording career in collaboration with major artists and ensembles as an organist, pianist, harpsichordist and conductor in both standard and historically-informed practices.
Ian is currently principal keyboard player with the Handel and Haydn Society Orchestra and Artistic Director of Arcadia Players Baroque Orchestra. During his first year at First Parish, he initiated a concert series which has been quite successful and has increased the church’s visibility in the community.