First Church in Ipswich, UCC

1 Meetinghouse Green
Ipswich, MA 01938
Phone: 978/356-2211
Web address:

Contact Person:

Rev. Rebecca Anne Pugh Brown

Organization Description:

Seminarian Intern. The First Church in Ipswich, UCC, is an Open and Affirming seaside congregation of 350 with a commitment to community - both inside and outside our church. Our congregation enjoys the opportunity to minister to refugees, a beginning men's group and women's spirituality group, ongoing ministry to firefighters in our community, an ecology group and a peace group, and the inclusion of diverse communities and lifestyles in the church. Ours is a congregation of many young families, and many seniors who help to show us the way. We are economically diverse: laborers worship alongside lawyers; refugees worship alongside real estate agents. Founded in 1634, we were struck by lightning in 1965 and our building was reconstructed of white brick, with brilliant stained glass that shapes our worship with boldness and innovation. We are a Trinitarian congregation. We appreciate new insights and ideas to help us to experience the Word of God. We enjoy the opportunity to walk together on the road to Emmaus, and seek the risen Christ in the broken bread of our stories and our lives.

Opportunities for Student Involvement:

Our Seminarian Intern will be invited to become involved in outreach to firefighters or international refugees of war, to nursing home residents or those hospitalized with illness, to children in crisis or families involved with Habitat for Humanity, to Mayan villagers in Guatemala, to local youth, or to our growing GLBT population in our town. Further, opportunities are available to preach monthly, to practice Communion, Baptisms, weddings, and funerals, to offer prayers and children's sermons in worship. Interns at First Church have the opportunity to become involved in every aspect of our healthy and growing church. We have an excellent Mentoring committee, which meets monthly with our Seminarian Intern, serving the function of a Pastor-Parish relations committee. Our Mentoring committee offers support, great meals, insight, friendship, feedback for sermons, and a watchful eye so that activities will be allocated with a gracious balance of time, knowing that Interns have studies and families and other activities in their lives.

In addition, we are preparing to welcome a refugee family from Syria: a mother, father, four children, and a grandmother, who we expect to arrive in mid-October. Support for the family, ESL, health-advocacy, education, and welcome are included in this field placement.

Commute/Transportation Information:

First Church in Ipswich is located 30 miles north of Boston on the MBTA commuter rail, which works very well except for Sunday mornings. By car, we are a 45 minute drive from the city.

Arts of Ministry Competencies Offered:

  • Administration and Program Development
  • Denominational Polity
  • Pastoral Care and Counseling
  • Preaching and Worship
  • Public Leadership, Community Organizing, and Planning
  • Religious Education and Spiritual Development


Weekly with supervisor. Feedback from Mentoring Committee on a monthly basis or more often if requested.

Additional Information:

  • Number of Students: 1
  • Total Compensation: $6000.00
  • Type of Compensation: Work Study
  • Additional Notes: New opportunities are available this year for outdoor leadership, as we work with other religious communities to develop a series of adventures for youth, including bicycle trips, mountain climbs, cross-country skiing, and ice skating.

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