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eNews

February 8, 2018
Latest News
Join Us for Worship This Sunday
Coffeehouse and Potluck
Adult RE: Origins of the Trinity
"Staffing Our Future" News
The Magic of Abundance
Building Beloved Community, Providing Practical Support
Pet Food Drive at FUUSB
Housekeeping/Lost and Found
JUMP Needs Toilet Paper
 
 
 
Upcoming Service
Sunday, February 18, 
9 a.m. and 11 a.m.

Worship Lead:
Rev. Mara Dowdall, Senior Minister

Worship Associate:
Rodney Lowe

Question Box Sunday
Our UU faith places a premium on the spiritual value of asking questions. We often say that, when it comes to the deepest issues in life, we have more questions than we do answers. This  Sunday, as a celebration of our UU quest for truth and meaning, we will give you the opportunity to ask your minister your burning questions about faith, spirituality, and life. Your questions will be collected early in the hour; Rev. Mara will attempt to answer as many as she can (on the fly!) in lieu of a traditional sermon, with our Worship Associate, Rodney Lowe, acting as interviewer. When we offered this in 2014 and 2016, we got a great response each time, so we are reprising it once again!


 
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Join Us for Worship This Sunday!
Sunday, February 11 at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m.
Rev. Mara Dowdall, Senior Minister

"Love, Love, Love"
On this Sunday before Valentine's Day, we'll lift up and celebrate one of our four core First UU values: Love. Through powerful readings and song, we'll explore the different ways and kinds of relationships through which love shows up in our world.

Worship Associate: Kristin Kany

Coffeehouse and Potluck
Sally Russell  
 
February 10, 6-8:30 p.m. - Sanctuary City Coffee House - "Sweet Hearts and Broken Hearts" - Coffee House and Potluck - FUUSB Parlors  

The music ministry team and a small planning group havescheduled Coffee Houses/Potlucks for the second Saturday of the month, January-April of 2018. In the true spirit of a potluck please bring a dish of your choice to share with others. What better way to survive the winter weather, than to break bread together, while we
 entertain each other!  
 
This month we will eat first and the entertainment will start at 7 p.m. People of all ages are encouraged to attend. We have some people who have agreed to perform a few songs. Additionally there will be time for an "open mic" so if you sing, play an instrument, want to recite a poem, etc., you will have an opportunity to perform. Invite your friends and come join us.  

Please contact Brian Haas at bhaas@viscc.com  or Jonathan Sands at  Jonathan.Sands@uvm.edu  with questions.

Adult RE:  Origins of the Trinity
chalice by river
Sunday, February 11, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Jeff Trumbower

As Unitarians we started out defining ourselves opposed to Trinitarians, so what do those terms mean and where did this notion of God as a Trinity come from in the first place?

Jeff Trumbower has taught Bible studies for FUUSB religious education classes for many years. Here is a chance for adults to experience his passion for teaching. He has published Born from Above: The Anthropology of the Gospel of John and is chair of the Department of Religious Studies at St. Michael's College.
 
"Staffing Our Future" News
"Staffing Our Future" News:  Andre Will Be Our 
Half-Time Assistant Minister in 2018-2019!
 
As many of you know, last summer our congregation began the initial phases of a multi-year staff reorganization plan with the goal of a FUUSB staffing configuration that is more sustainable for a congregation of our size (almost 500 active members) and is more closely aligned with the Society's mission and vision. In the weeks since Mara's announcement that this will be her last year as our minister, many of you have wondered how that change in ministerial leadership will affect the staffing plan. The short answer is that, while Mara's departure may affect some aspects of the plan, including its sequence and timeline, our congregation remains committed to the plan's core goal of sustainable staffing. And some parts of the plan will be unfolding as expected, in spite of our Senior Minister transition. (We will be using this spot in the eNews to keep you apprised of related developments as the winter and spring unfold.)
 
This week, we are delighted to announce one piece of the plan that will indeed be happening next year as hoped. Andre Mol, our ministerial intern, will be staying on at FUUSB next year, but in a new capacity as a one-year half-time Assistant Minister. Andre's title will be Developmental Assistant Minister, and his position will run for the 2018-19 fiscal year (July 2018-June 2019). We designed this one-year position to help the Society bridge the gap between our current one-minister reality and the eventual hiring of a full-time second minister. This part-time role will primarily oversee the spiritual care needs of the congregation as well as lead worship services once per month.
 
The process to hire Andre for this one-year position has been underway since last spring and is separate from any pending decisions associated with our Senior Minister transition. Prior to accepting this role, Andre had to gain special permission from the UUA Ministerial Credentialing Office, since ministerial candidates typically cannot serve in positions within the same congregations where they have served their internship. (There are a whole host of good reasons for that guideline, which Andre and Mara are happy to explain in more detail if you're interested!) The credentialing office granted permission for Andre to serve in this position specifically because it is a time-limited, one-year position.
 
Over the past two years, many of you have gotten to know Andre in a variety of capacities across worship, pastoral care, social action, and religious education programs. The nature of ministerial internships is broad, with an intention of exposing the intern to all aspects of congregational life. In contrast, the Developmental Assistant Minister role will be much more focused on the pastoral care aspects of our ministry. When he begins his new position, Andre will really be taking on a new ministerial role on our staff, and accordingly, you may see him serving in different ways than you have over the past two years.
 
Andre is currently scheduled to graduate from Meadville Lombard Theological School in May (hooray!) and he will complete his internship with us at the end of that month. In early June, we will officially celebrate the completion of Andre's internship, and he will then have some time off before returning to us in his new role later in the summer. Andre is excited at the opportunity to continue with the Society for another year. And we are all glad for the continuity Andre's ongoing presence will add to the Society during this season of transition. Andre looks forward to focusing his time and talents on deepening the ways we connect with and care for each other in the congregation. Please join us in congratulating him on his upcoming new role at FUUSB!

The Magic of Abundance!
Christina Fulton, Director of Operations and Finance

Have you ever thought to yourself: If the Society needs all this money to hire a second minister, why the heck are we giving away half of our cash collection every  Sunday ? I know many people have asked me that over the years.  Well the truth is... Magic! You see, before we began giving away half of our cash collection, our annual cash collection was $16,630 and all of that money went into the budget. The following year, when we chose generosity, our cash collection grew to $24,630 and we gave away $9,894! We gave away nearly half of the total cash collection for the year and nearly kept our net income the same. Magic! Over the years that amount kept growing and last year we collected $36,127 and we gave away $16,473. Since its inception we have given nearly $170,000 to local and national nonprofits doing amazing justice work!
 
Many of you may remember the "Magic Penny" song that the Religious Education classes would sing on Sundays. The lyrics went something like this: 

It's just like a magic penny,
Hold it tight and you won't have any.
Lend it, spend it, and you'll have so many
They'll roll all over the floor.
 
Well, that's exactly what happened when our congregation chose to give some of our money away. 
 
Many people find the same is true with their annual pledge. We think we need to hold on tight to all our money and make sure our pledge is low enough so we can do all the other fun things we want to do. But you know what? When people let go a bit, are brave and stretch their pledge, and then pay their pledge every month at the same time they're paying their electric bill and cable bill, you know what happens? Magic! They still have some money left over for fun! We certainly don't want you to pledge more than you are capable of paying, but we do want you to pledge an amount that is meaningful and yes, maybe even a stretch for you. It's just like a magic penny!

Building Beloved  Community and Providing Practical Support
Sarah Weber

Please consider helping the following community  members with the gift of a meal and connection. Nothing fancy is required or requested. The break from pl anning, shopping for and cooking even the simplest meal is a tender offering to these families dealing with out of the ordinary challenges. Taking a meal to others is a wonderful way of meeting new people and building community. (The link to all these meal trains is below.)

Have questions about what it means to cook vegetarian or vegan or gluten free meals? In mid March, after a service, the Care Network Team will be hosting a guest speaker to help us understand these different ways of cooking and eating. Stay tuned!

Please let the Care Network Team know if you are aware of someone in the community who could use some support. The email is:  carenetwork@uusociety.org

*  Miriam (Tammy) Strauss is dealing with long-term health issues caused by being rear-ended by a cattle truck. One meal every week is a major support to her.  

 John Lincoln had additional shoulder surgery right after Thanksgiving and his partner, Jill Stevens, also has some long-term health challenges. They welcome some assistance a couple times per week for several weeks as John heals.

 Elz Curtiss is caring for her partner, Lynne Matthews, and would love a meal once a week on Mondays for herself. She is the sole caregiver for Lynne on the weekends, and so by Monday has exhausted her food stores and hasn't had time to replenish them. 

*  Kathy Bonilla has been fighting a long-term health battle and she and her two granddaughters truly appreciate the help that  a few meals a week can be. 


Pet Food Drive at FUUSB
dog_cat_portrait.jpg Sarah Yandow

The UU Animal Ministry Team is beginning to collect pet food. Anything and everything "pets" will be appreciated: cat food, dog food, litter, treats, toys and other small pet supplies. These items should be clean and/or gently used, and will be donated to local food shelves as a first step to reach out and help people in our community with their furry family members. Please leave items in the Pet Food Drive box in the Parlors. 

Thank you so much for helping our goals and dreams become realities! 

From the members of the UU Animal Ministry Team 
 
Housekeeping/Lost and Found
Hi folks, 

I'm wondering about many of you having cold fingers, ears, etc. Also, are you thirsty? How about,"Where is that crock pot or lasagna dish?" Well, PLEASE take time to cruise both the Lost and Found (green bin located in the Community Room) and the basement kitchen. Water bottles and coffee mugs are on the shelf above the first floor coat rack.

Many of these items have been around for 2-3 months or more. Some even have names on them. All of them will be going away  March 5th, so claim your stuff while you can! 

Thank You  - Myra
 
JUMP Needs Toilet Paper
Ellen Wollensack

JUMP is currently in short supply of toilet paper to give to clients. Please try to remember to pick up an extra package of TP the next time you are shopping and drop it off on our JUMP shelves in the back of the Sanctuary. Thank you so much--in advance--for your help!