September 27 - October 3, 2018
The CommUUnicator
The Weekly Newsletter of
The Unitarian Society of Germantown
Building Beloved Community

THIS WEEK: On Friday, we choose between a movie and a welcoming New Sanctuary event ; on Sunday we engage in this month's theme of "Vision" with Rev. Kent's sermon on "Opening Eyes," followed several events, including an invitation to all to help create a spiritual sanctuary in the USG "Woods."
In Worship, 10:30am Opening Eyes
Rev. Kent Matthies
Sunday, September 30, 10:30am
Too often we can live our days with a blurred vision or even closed eyes. Too often we fail to recognize opportunities to become our fullest, truest selves. In a world crammed with “options,” the challenge can be figuring out how and where to put your energies. As you listen to your soul, what is your vision for your life?  
In Child Spiritual Development
Children begin Sunday morning in the Sanctuary with their families and then at 10:45am are sung out to their classes:
  • PreK - K - Sullivan 1
  • Grades 1 - 3 - Nursery School, 1st Fl.
  • Grades 4 - 6 - Sullivan 2 & 3
  • OWL, Grades 7 - 8 - Bristol Room
Parents, please click here to find out details, especially about where to collect the children after the service ends.

No Youth Group program, but 9-12th Youth Group are invited to bring a pair of gloves and help with the Service Project in the Woods for Roderick Ahrens' Eagle Scout project. 12-4pm. There will be food and drinks. 

Details about the CSD programs and schedules can be found on the website under the Spiritual Development tab.

Childcare for children 4-5 years old and younger is offered this Sunday and most Sundays from 9:00am - 12:00pm in the Committee Room. 
Before the Worship Service

Meditate in the Meditation Room
Meditation, reading, dharma and sharing are offered in Sullivan 3 on the First and Second Sundays of the month between 9:15 and 10:20am. All are welcome to join in quietly. On the other Sundays the space is open for those who choose to come and sit. For information on meditation, click here.

Drop off nonperishable food items for our annual Fall Food Drive to the designated carts in the Kitchen. Donations in October and November will be divided and then delivered to both St. Vincent's Food Pantry and the UU House Outreach Program.
Coffee Hour
After the Worship Service

Enjoy refreshments provided by Village 8.

Sign up to help REBUILD PHILLY! The USG team will be working with Rebuilding Together Philadelphia on Friday & Saturday October 19 and 20. Sign up for one or both days with George Buckmann and Barbara Ginn. Great camaraderie and significant accomplishment are the rewards.

Sign up for a Small Group Ministry. Several groups have openings. Click here for details and for openings. (add'l info below.)

Attend the Drop-In Small Group Ministry led by Rev. Kent at 12:15pm in the Minister's Office.

Obtain your preferred pronoun stickers at the Welcoming Table.

SignUp is the reminder tool USG uses to organize volunteers for our upcoming activities. Click Here to go to our group page to sign up online.

But wait! There's More >>>>>>
THIS Sunday from 12:00 to 4:00pm
Join the Workday for the Woods Project
We will be installing benches and laying gravel. ALL are invited to help! If you will be available, please RSVP to Roderick Ahrens ( , 267/994/5679).
Rain date is the following Sunday, October 7, also 12:00 to 4:00pm.
red school house
Stay THIS Sunday afternoon to hear.. .
Panel Discussion on The Future of Philadelphia Public Schools - New School Board -- New Day?
Sunday, September 30, 12:30 - 2:00pm, Edna Jones Assembly Room
Jessica Stanforth from the Cooperative Nursery School at USG will moderate a panel of local public school advocates, parents, and teachers. Each will express their views about our children's future. Join the Social Justice Council for light snacks before this lively event, its Q&A and networking afterwards. Click here for details and list of panel members.
Then return this Sunday evening at 5:00pm for 90 minutes of a Mindfulness Meditation in Nuturing Kindness , led by Deborah Cooper. Whether you have attended a previous session or are here for the first time, you are welcome.  Click here for details. Look for signage on how to access the Sullivan Chapel.
Sanctuary of Self
Rev. Kent Matthies
Sunday, October 7, 10:30am
In times of challenge and serenity it is possible to experience yourself as a safe, peaceful sanctuary. Thich Nhat Hanh says, “To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself.” Whether you describe yourself as a theist, agnostic, atheist or other, there is a deep truth in the human capacity to find beauty and acceptance within self. Let’s explore how!
Ending Racism Video of the Month
Friday, September 28, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
ERC will screen a talk by Prof. Ibram Kendi, author of the book, Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America . Click here to read more.
Still-Open Auction Events:
Press Club Dinner
October 5, 6:30 pm
Diane Fiske gives USG people an opportunity to come to the oldest private press club in the US. Guests can view media memorabilia dating back to the early 20th century, enjoy gourmet food, wine and beer. Adults: $15. The cost of the dinner and drinks will be each person's responsibility. Carpooling from USG. 9 spaces available. If interested, contact Kay Weiser , 215-527-3179.

Fall Dog Day Afternoon
Saturday, October 6 from 3:00 - 5:00pm
Join Bonnie McDairmant, Carolyn Scott, other USGers and their furry friends for a romp in the Wissahickon. Room for 2 more of any age. $15. Contact Kay Weiser .
Breakfast with the Minister
Visitor and New Member Breakfast
Sunday, October 7, 9-10:15am
All Visitors and New Members are invited to breakfast with the Minister. Please let the Welcoming chairs, Treva Burger and Lisa Dutton know if you are able to come by
emailing or calling 215-983-3783.
USG at Outfest
Sunday, October 7, 3:00 - 5:00pm
Meet at Giovanni’s Room (AIDS Thrift and Bookstore) at the corner of 12th and Pine, then set off together to enjoy… Philadelphia OutFest!
Welcoming Congregation Refresher "Coming Out Day" Evening
Thursday, October 11, 6:00 - 8:00pm
As part of USG’s Welcoming Congregation Refresher , we gather to “come out” as LGBTQ, as friends and allies.

6:00pm: Light dinnertime refreshments (potluck) with conversation. Dining Room.
7:00pm: Marianne Banbor, Librarian Supervisor at the Philadelphia Free Library, will speak on Gay History in Philadelphia with a focus on and tribute to Barbara Gittings. Sullivan Chapel.
Sign Up for
Friday through Sunday, November 2 -4
The Twelth Annual Men’s Retreat will be held at the Temenos Retreat Center near West Chester, PA ( ).  Every man in the Philadelphia area is invited to attend and experience a wonderful weekend. Activities will include workshops, yoga, hiking, drumming around a bonfire, good food, poker, topped off with a Sunday morning worship service. Come get to know and bond with the other men in USG and in the Philadelphia area congregations. The cost for the weekend is $200. This includes Friday supper, three meals on Saturday and Sunday breakfast.  If you plan to come, please pay the $200 fee on the USG website ( ). Please let Hal Krieger ( ) know of your plans. Space is limited.
Interested in Joining USG?
We welcome people into membership four times a year. We ask that people take a UU-101 class (offered monthly, next: October 21) and a Membership Orientation (offered quarterly, next: September 30) before joining. There will be a New Member Signing on November 4. If you are interested in any of these events or for more information, please email Welcoming Co-Chairs Treva Burger and Lisa Dutton at . In addition, you can visit our Membership page on our website,
Construction is Ongoing - Several Reminders
The area in the grove that's now fenced in is a hard hat area and access is limited to the construction workers. Parents, we know big holes are fascinating, but please prevent children from getting too close.
Please look for signage about how to access the Sullivan Chapel. The stairway to the Sullivan wing is no longer accessible; the only access to the Sullivan Chapel wing will be through the side door off the courtyard.
Courtyard parking is limited to only those needing an accessible entrance . The courtyard is now our only accessible entrance, as the ramp into the Edna Jones Room is now closed. In addition, we have less room in that area because of the construction pod. Please be mindful of those with greater needs.
Come Join the Choir!
The illustrious USG choir is looking for some additional singers! All that is necessary is the ability to match pitch and a desire to be a part of a venerable USG tradition that regularly rehearses (on Thursday evenings and on Sunday mornings) and sings at most Sunday services from September through the end of May. Interested? Please see Mark Daugherty , our music man.
Enjoy working with Visuals? Interested in helping to videotape services?
If you would like to participate and give back to the USG community and have an interest in and talent for visuals and/or technology, we are looking for...

1) people who can work with Rev. Kent and the various guest speakers and worship associates on Sunday worship slides creation , and
2) other people who can videotape the Sunday services , which Jeff Smith has done for many years.

Please let Gloria know of your interest at .

We will be following a new curriculum, Soul Matters Sharing Circle, for SGM this year.

Signups during Fellowship Hour for SGMs continue this Sunday.

 Several groups have openings for new members.  Follow this link  for availability (towards the bottom of the page) or visit the SGM table at fellowship hour to signup. You may also contact the group leader or Treva Burger, at  or 215-277-5752, for more information or to sign up.
We are excited to announce our new Give+ Text option for making pledge and contribution payments to USG!
Please click here to learn how to use this convenient tool.
A form for your questions, comments & suggestions is now available at the Welcome table on Sundays and in the foyer where the name tags are.
Thank You, Villagers!
Thank you to all who participate in hosting Fellowship Hour! If you are willing to coordinate for your Village, please let Treva Burger, know. Below is the schedule for Fellowship Hour Hosting in October.
  • October 7 - Village 9
  • October 14 - Village 10
  • October 21 - TBD
  • October 28 - TBD
Your Vote Counts
Have you registered to vote?
Deadline in PA is Tuesday, October 9. Click here.
Rebuilding Together Philadelphia---
USG's Major Hands-on Service Project
Friday - Saturday, October 19 and 20

Get involved! Help rehab a home!
Join USG and RTP staff members in Philadelphia’s Kensington section. On Friday and/or Saturday, October 19-20, you can complete project tasks for one day or for both days. Whether you’re skilled or not, you will improve the neighborhood. Up to 20 other organizations will renovate homes within a few blocks of each other. While we work with the homeowners, we will hear their stories and learn of their challenges and resilience. You can be a part of this amazing effort too.  

For more information about volunteering for this event, talk to USG's new RTP leaders Barbara Ginn and/or George Buckmann during Fellowship Hour.

If you’re 14 years old or older, volunteer for either one or both days by sending an email to Barbara Ginn at

Say NO to Indefinite Detention of Migrant Children
The Trump administration has proposed a regulation that will permit children crossing the border with their parents to be put into detention indefinitely. More information is here in this New York Times editorial, "Don't Let Migrant Kids Rot."

There is a quick, easy, and very important action that anyone can do:  Please protest these cruel new regulations by submitting your concern on the Federal Register's request for public comments - go to and enter DHS Docket No. ICEB-2018-0002 .  We want to flood the comment board with our objections to this continuing persecution of immigrant families.
The above comes from UUPLAN's Action Alert
Immigration Justice
Meeting of the New Sanctuary Committee of St. Vincent DePaul
Wednesday, October 10, 7:00pm
St. Vincent de Paul's Hospitality Room
Two families entered Sanctuary at the First United Methodist Church of Germantown (FUMCOG) on September 6. FUMCOG's Rev. Bob Coombe has declared their church a Germantown Sanctuary and has invited all congregations to care for and support the families. This meeting will discuss ways people can do just that.

If you and/or your family want to become involved in this inspiring and courageous endeavor for justice, contact Yvonne Marlier at or Rev. Kent Matthies .
Fall Food Drive - October and November
In this season of harvest, let’s remember those who need support. Please bring canned and non-perishable foods when you come to USG and leave them on the designated carts in the kitchen. Donations will be shared between St. Vincent’s Food Cupboard and the UU House Outreach Program, which provides support to older people in the Germantown area.
Save the Date!   
Saturday, October 13, in Harrisburg
UUPLAN's "Leadership Day 2018"
All who share an interest in advocacy and organizing for justice are welcome. More info and registration at . and by talking with USG's Dennis Brunn ( and at 215-984-8786).
Greater Philly UU Cluster Events
GPC Meeting
September 29, 9:30 - 11:30 am (9:00 meet and greet)
UC of West Chester, 501 S. High Street, West Chester, PA 19382
- we'll debrief the UU Community Weekend, discuss upcoming Legislative Advocacy training, and more. All are welcome!
Anti-racist and feminist activist Xan Joi will lead a discussion at 7:00pm on Monday, October 8 at BuxMont Unitarian Universalist Fellowship on Street Road near 611 in Warrington. 
Get Involved! Meet Fellow UUs!  
Follow links below to find out more information about the events and groups at USG that occur usually once a month.

20's & 30's SGM Group - Second Thursday, October 11, 6:30pm, Drop-in Young Adults Small Group Ministry group. For more information, please contact Stephanie Bonner at or on Facebook where they maintain an active invite-only activities group. 

Book Group on Friday Morning - Third Friday, October 19, 10:30am at Cathedral Village. If interested in joining, please contact Barbara Dowdall. The 2018-2019 Book List is now posted on> About> Affinity Groups> Book Group .

CAMI (Citizens Against Mass Incarceration) - Fourth Monday, October 22, 7:00pm. At USG. Contact Nancy Anderson .

Caregiver Support Group - Second Friday, October 12, 11:00am - 1:00pm. At USG. Contact Maura Gallagher .

EarthSpirit Circle . First Monday, except for holiday weekends. Next meeting October 1, 7:00pm. At USG. Contact Donya at Please click here for details on October's meeting.

ERC (Ending Racism Committee) - First Sunday, October 7, 12:00 - 1:30pm. At USG. Contact Barbara Dowdall .

Humanists - PUSH - Philadelphia Unitarian Society of Humanists , Fourth Sunday, October 28, 12:00pm. At USG. Contact Paul Teti .

Nature Walking at Valley Green - Every Monday and Thursday at 9:00am, you can meet others - whoever shows up- at Valley Green in Chestnut Hill for a morning walk. Point Person is Steve Conrad, who is usually there.

Needle Exchange, a Handwork Group - First Wednesday, October 3, 1:30 - 3:00pm, off-site. Contact Margaret Thompson .

Open Small Group Ministry - Usually Second Sunday but this September we offer instead Drop-In SGMs. Next one: Sunday, September 30 at 12:15pm in the Minister's Office. Those new to SGMs can get a "sample" before making a commitment. For more information, contact Treva at .

UU-101 - T hird Sunday, October 21, 12:00-1:00pm. UU-101 is an Introduction to Unitarian Universalism, held at USG, and childcare is provided. Please let a leader, Charles Gabriel or Eric Foster, know that you plan to attend by emailing to If unable to email, you can call Eric at 484-347-8998.
Join A USG Facebook Group!   
You can join a USG Facebook group as well as meet in person!
To find out about special events, post photos, and stay in touch, here are some of USG's groups and their Facebook links:

ASD (Adult Spiritual Development) facebook
CSD (Child Spiritual Development)
YRUU (Young Religious Unitarian Universalists) A Closed Group great to know about and if desired, ask to join.
YA - Young Adults
Greater Philly UUs - Social Justice & Other Greater Philly UU News

P.U.S.H. Philadelphia Unitarian Society of Humanists

Exploring Elderhood
caring square
Our thoughts and prayers are with...
...Ann Clarey, who is suffering from sciatica and is experiencing difficult pain. Cards and emails are welcome.

...Margi Roberts , who underwent surgery on September 24. Positive thoughts, cards, and emails are welcome.

Congratulations and best wishes to.. .
...two of our youth, Benjamin Smith and Roderick Ahrens , who both made the semi-finalist list of the National Merit Scholarship exam! WhooHoo!
Caring Team
Linda Bernstein (chair), Sarah West, Rev. Kent Matthies

If you are aware of any joys or concerns that should be part of our caring system, please let us know. You can email
If you call a caring team member and do not speak directly, leave a voice mail and your call will be returned ASAP.
Rev. Kent Matthies, Minister -
Ryan Hurd, Director of Spiritual Development -
Mark Daugherty, Music Director -
Gloria Guldager, Church Administrator-
Carolyn Scott, Asst. Administrator-
Carolyn Cotton, Rental Coordinator -
Mike Rogers, Sunday Morning and Special Events Sexton -  
Tuesday's SPIRIT (not every Tuesday in the Summer) - Friday by 3:00pm
Thursday's Weekly eCommUUnicator - Wednesday by noon
Sunday's Announcements - Thursday by noon

The Unitarian Society of Germantown | 215-844-1157 | 6511 Lincoln Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19119