Rev. Patricia Hart, with Melinda Lee & Mary Beth McNulty
"The State of the Society"
Now, at the beginning of this fourth and final year of transitional ministry, it seems timely to look back at the five Developmental Goals identified by this Society in 2019. What exactly did the Board and lay leaders identify as priorities then? What has actually been accomplished since then – both related to the goals, and in other areas of congregational life? What shall we work on, now? Some stories about what is emerging at First UU.
Come join us in person, if you can, or via the livestream. The Choir will sing this Sunday!
Following the service, all are welcome to Outdoor Coffee Hour. And join us for Zoom Coffee Hour at 11:15 a.m. The Zoom link and more information can be found here: Online Coffee Hour
Big Blue Trunk & Parent Summit!
Erika Reif, Director of Lifespan Faith Development
Sunday September 25,10:15-11:15 a.m. (with play continuing ‘til noon!)
The Big Blue Trunk will make yet another appearance on the Meeting House lawn! Mike and his one-of-a-kind crazy games and contraptions will be providing lots of active fun outside the Memorial Garden while inside, parents of children and youth come together over coffee and bagels to hear about the plans Faith Development staff have brewing for the rest of this fall, help us plan for the future, and connect with each other! A vibrant program is one we build together, so please come share the gift of your presence!
Families will start together in the worship service and both parents and children will leave after the choral anthem. FUUSB Childcare Providers will supervise children as they play. The Big Blue Trunk is staying until 12 p.m., so we hope parents will take time to play with the kids after our parent meeting ends. (Feel free to invite friends and neighbors with children to stop by between 11:15-12:00 for fun with The Trunk!)
Sunday Morning Clean-Up
From the Meeting House Grounds Group
Would you like to help out keeping our grounds cleaned up? It takes a village! We are looking for a pool of individuals (two per Sunday) to walk around the grounds and pick up trash. What this entails is to arrive early on Sunday morning and help our staff get the outside grounds ready for our worship service and social hour. The training will be very simple; you will take direction from staff and basically provide another pair of hands. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to join the pool of volunteers to help clean up on Sunday mornings.
Deep Listening Circles: Radical Welcome on the Meeting House Grounds
What do you think it could look like to welcome the wider community to the Meeting House grounds? The Healthy Congregation Team and Meeting House Grounds Group invite you to join a Deep Listening Circle with attention to Radical Welcome on the Meeting House Grounds: an intentional gathering to share how you are and to listen deeply to others. We will center the circle on the following questions:
What are you thinking/feeling about the wider community use of the Meeting House grounds?
What might our UU Society's Radical Welcome on the Meeting House grounds look like?
How do you see yourself engaging in this Radical Welcome?
There will be a short update on the present situation on the grounds before the circle. We can support one another to ask and answer these kinds of questions. The practice of coming together in our faith-based community in this way is one way for us to be in covenant.
There will be one virtual and one in-person option:
At your Search Team's meeting on Monday, we talked about communication both with the congregation here, and with prospective ministerial applicants.
In last week's eNews, we mentioned the survey and listening sessions where we hope to hear what the First UU Society means to you today, what your goals are, and how a new minister could help us move toward them.
Our other communications job is outward-facing: to present this congregation to ministers who are in search. We want to make sure they see us in the best light (while being completely honest, of course). One of the things ministers are interested in is congregational self-awareness; do we know what we do well, and what we need to improve? The team will use what we learn from you to show that we do know our strengths and shortcomings, to paint the best picture possible.
Memorial Service for Roddy O'Neil Cleary
The memorial service for Roddy O'Neil Cleary, our minister emerita, will be held on Saturday, October 1 at 2 p.m. at the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Burlington. All are welcome. The service will also be livestreamed. Please click here for the link, or visit uusociety.org.
Sunday Morning Breakfast
Starting October 2
Sarah Russell, Meeting House Grounds Group
Sunday Morning Breakfast - Meeting House Grounds Group - 8 to 9 a.m. - starting October 2
The Meeting House Grounds Group is starting to have “Sunday Morning Breakfast” every Sunday at 8 a.m. in front of the Meeting House. The idea came from our community which noticed that there is no place for people to get a meal on Sunday, since the Food Pantry is not open and other organizations do not serve that day. Starting October 2 we will serve “Sunday Morning Breakfast” from 8-9 a.m. We will be looking to involve the whole congregation in this. Look for more news for ways you can get involved. You can email RadicalWelcoming@uusociety.org for ways to get involved. It takes a village.
Online Coffee Hour - NEW TIME!
Christina Fulton, Director of Operations & Finance
We are trying to find the best way to increase participation in Online Coffee Hour. Let me explain why. We have several people in our Online Coffee Hour who can only participate online because they live far away, are unable to come to the Meeting House on Sundays because they are ill or elderly, or for any number of reasons. Even though we are now having in-person services and therefore in-person coffee hours, these folks still really want to have a connection with us. Don't you want to keep up your connection with them?
So beginning on Monday, October 3, at 7 p.m. we will begin having our Online Coffee Hour on Monday evenings! We will give this day and time a try for the month of October to see how it goes. So even if you attend in-person coffee hour on Sundays, I hope you can visit Monday Evening Online Coffee Hour and help our online members stay connected. Join us at this link: us02web.zoom.us/j/86177146171
Looking for a Deeper Community?
Sharing Circles Coordinating Team
Theme Circles and Chalice Circles will be up and running in October. These small groups give a chance to get to know other UU members and explore your own spirituality.
Meet at 11:15 a.m. with a small group to discuss the Sermon, Readings and Benediction as a group. Looking forward to seeing you! The first meeting, on October 9, will be in the Whitney Young, Jr. Room.
Get Involved - UU the Vote
The Immigration Justice Team (IJT) is interested in sharing a resource with the congregation. If you’re interested in helping people learn more about the power of their votes, please consider the UU The Vote website listed below.
Vermont voters will vote in November on Prop 2, to amend the state constitution to abolish slavery, no exceptions. Although Vermonters have been told for decades that the state was the first to abolish slavery, there have always been exceptions, including allowing those under 21 to be enslaved, or enslaving individuals because of debts, damages, or fines. These have led to similar exceptions in the constitutions of 25 other states and in the Thirteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which allows enslavement for punishment of a crime.
Prop 2 needs to be passed not only because slavery is morally reprehensible and should be unambiguously abolished, but also to help Vermonters make the connection between the historic legacy of slavery and the current inequity, violence, and systemic racism in our society. To pledge to vote “yes,” use this link: bit.ly/AbolishSlaveryVT. To volunteer for the campaign, from talking to neighbors to phone banking to going door-to-door, see Vermont Interfaith Action’s website: viavt.org. Questions? Email email@example.com.