Connections Newsletter
All the news you need to know to connect, grow, and serve.
Ingathering Sunday
September 9, 9:15 & 11:15 a.m.
"The Art of Innocence"
Homily by Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley
At our traditional Ingathering Service we invite you to bring water from a place you may have visited this summer, even if it is only symbolic. We will blend our waters as a way of reuniting as a community. The homily will use the example of Fred Rogers to talk about how we may approach one another and the larger world with an attitude of innocence and curiosity. This is a hard thing to ask of ourselves in the midst of polarization and discord. If we can build the spiritual fortitude to do so, we will find the best way to live out our mission to Connect.

Kristin Keller will serve as worship associate. UUCA's adult choir, Sanctuary Singers, returns after their summer break to sing a UU favorite, Yonder Come Day, arranged by UU composer Clif Hardin.
More About this Sunday

Parent Note
On September 9 both services are all-church services. Children will stay with parents during these family-friendly services. Nursery care for two-year-olds and younger will be available. There will be no Religious Education classes. RE classes begin September 16. See link to RE newsletter below.

Parking Note
We return to our two services this Sunday AND there will be a pancake breakfast after the services. This means parking will especially be challenging between the services. To relieve traffic congestion and to provide spaces for visitors and those with mobility issues, we ask all able-bodied drivers to park in one of our two auxiliary lots (Mason lot on George Mason Drive and Arlington Hall Park on 4th Street - map here). Drivers can still do drop-offs at the lower level lobby and the end of the ramp. When crossing George Mason on foot, PLEASE cross at the light.

Upcoming Services

September 16, 9:15 and 11:15 a.m. “Cycles of Growth and Change” - Sermon by Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley. You know the saying: great, another blankety-blank growing experience! Growth can be threatening on a multitude of levels. We have to leave our comfort zones and enter into places of uncertainty, without knowing whether we have the wherewithal to live into something new. Rev. Terasa will talk about what this may mean to us individually, as well as collectively. How do we sustain ourselves in the midst of inevitable change, and find ways to approach growth with purpose. 

September 23, 9:15 and 11:15 a.m. “In Service of the Greater Good” - Sermon by Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley.
Hopi service trip 2015
New for UUCA Share-the-Plate Program – Support for UUCA Youth Service Trips
Our Share-the-Plate program for fiscal year 2018-19 is evolving to reflect our change in ministerial leadership and our need to support UUCA’s youth. This Sunday's Share-the-Plate offerings will support the UUCA Youth 2019 spring service trip to the Hopi Nation in Arizona. This service trip will likely work with Sumi Nungwa, a group UUCA has actively partnered with and that LeeAnn Williams, Director of Lifespan Religious Education, has been connected with since her service with Salt Lake City Unitarian Universalist Church several years ago. Sumi Nungwa is a small non-profit that provides food and other basic necessities and services to the Hopi and Navajo elders of Northern Arizona. It's annual revenue is less than $50,000 annually. A partnership with Sumi Nungwa closely meets our goals of having STP recipients align with our UUCA mission, having direct connections with our congregations, and benefits significantly from our partnership. We anticipate a large number of youth will participate in this year's spring service trip. Congregational contributions to STP will help support more youth and build an even stronger partnership with this ongoing service project. Thank you for your continued support of this important ministry area. Our youth are excited about this next trip and planning has already begun.

Donations are accepted for each week's STP recipient through the following Saturday at midnight. Make online donations here.     
Monday Night Buddhist Meditation: Mindful of Race
Author and teacher at the Insight Insight Meditation Community of Washington, Ruth King, will be the special guest speaker at Jonathan Foust's Mindfulness Meditation class on Monday, September 17, at 7:30 p.m. Ruth will lead us in meditation and give a Dharma talk from her latest book, Mindful of Race - Transforming Racism from the Inside Out. No registration or fee. Donations welcome. A book-signing will be held after the talk. More information here.

Time: Monday, September 17, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Sanctuary

Ministry Matters
In the Meantime
By Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley

I am so enjoying getting to know so many of you and learning the way things work around UUCAVA. One of the things that has leapt out at me is how generous so many of you are with your time and talent. The Board is a wonderfully dedicated group of people who have had to work way beyond the call in the last year, and still they continue to serve. The pastoral care and worship associates make a big difference in a congregation this size. And there are literally hundreds of you who serve on different committees, sing in the choir, teach in RE, serve as ushers and greeters and table staffers. It’s truly remarkable, and I know how grateful the staff are. 

One of the priorities I’d like to work on this year is strengthening your leadership development. Large congregations always have a hard time identifying and inviting members into leadership positions. Leadership is a passion of mind, so in partnership with the nominating committee I’ll be offering some workshops on leadership that will hopefully be helpful for you as individuals in your own settings, but also to find ways you could contribute to this vibrant community. 

I think most people learn that service to a community is a privilege that benefits the server as much as the community. It’s wonderful to minister with people who live out that value. If there are things you would like to get involved with please let me know. We welcome your contributions!
Church Matters
photo collage
Annual Services Auction – Let's make it happen!
If you're new to UUCA, you may not be familiar with our annual services auction. If you've been around for a while, you're aware that it's one of the most momentous evenings of the year at UUCA! Our annual auction is not only one of the biggest fundraisers of the year, but it's an incredible evening of true esprit de corps! UUCAers and friends come together for a friendly bidding competition on a wide range of services and items. It's a fun night of building beloved community while adding a big chunk of change to the general fund. AND, it's made possible because of volunteers like you! We need volunteer to make it happen! We have volunteer positions big and small. We need planners of the big picture and the doers the day of the auction--plus countless volunteers in-between. Let Tamara Srader, Chief Admin Officer, know of your interest at ( Photo: 2014 Auction Night)
Lifespan Religious Education
Ingathering & Water Communion This Sunday
This Sunday is an All-Church Sunday--children and youth will remain in the Sanctuary with their families for the entire service (We return to two services this Sunday: 9:15 & 11:15 a.m.). Childcare is available for kids two years old and younger. Your family is invited to participate in our water communion ritual by bringing a small sample of water from a place that is special to you. The water can be from your summer travels, the local pool, or even the kitchen tap. The ritual of combining our waters is symbolic of our diverse and beloved community coming together in a shared faith. 
Pancake Breakfast This Sunday
Come hungry this Sunday! Our Youth will be serving pancakes after both services. All donations will help fray the cost of their 2019 spring break service trip to the Hopi Nation in Arizona. Attn: All Youth (all high schoolers) and parents, we need help flipping pancakes and serving tables, sign up here.

Date: Sunday, September 9, volunteers needed during & after both services
Location: Main Kitchen & Fellowship Hall
Adult Education workshop with Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley
“Conflict Transformation”
Please join us for an afternoon of exploring conflict! While conflict can be scary and divisive, it is also possible for conflict, when approached in a healthy manner, to be an opportunity for growth and learning. Rev. Terasa is trained in the approach of “Conflict Transformation” that assumes that conflict is not something that can be “managed” so much as processed in a way that can be transformative. This method has been used in contexts such as the South Africa Truth and Reconciliation process, and in peace negotiations in Ireland. We will explore our own personal responses to conflict, look at what brain science has to teach us, examine system theories, and practice ways in which groups can create opportunities for healthy conversations.  Register here.

Time: Saturday, October 20, 1-4 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
Welcome Our New Youth & Young Adult Coordinator
We are pleased to have Julia Peterson on board as our new Youth and Young Adult Coordinator. Julia is a native Alexandria resistant who grew up active in the Presbyterian church and served as youth leader at the Old Presbyterian Meeting House. Julia also served White Bear UU church in Mahtomedi, Minnesota as Youth Program Assistant Director before returning to Virginia. For the past year, Julia has been volunteering with our youth as an advisor. Welcome, Julia!
Faith in Action
Rally for Our Planet at UUCA
The Rally for Our Planet is taking place in UUCA's Activity Room on Friday, September 7. This is an action to stand up for Virginia’s clean water and to express opposition to dirty fossil fuels projects such as the Virginia pipeline. This action is happening as part of a global effort, with hundreds of actions under the banner of Rise for Climate to highlight increasing climate impacts and the need for real climate leadership. The rally at UUCA will feature Karenna Gore, director of the Center for Earth Ethics at Union theological Seminary, and Virginia Delegate Sam Rasoul, Roanoke. Space is limited, please sign up here. Co-sponsored by Network NoVA Action, UUs for Social Justice and UUCA's Do It Green Team (DIG).

Time: Friday, September 7, 6 p.m.
Location: Activity Room.
Equality UUCA Seeks Your Ideas
Equality UUCA, the LGBTQ+Ally group at UUCA, invites you to drop by the Volunteer Room after second service this Sunday, September 9, to meet up, get connected, and share ideas for the year ahead. National Coming Out Day will be here before we know it! For more information, contact

Date: Sunday, September 9, 12:30 p.m.
Location: Volunteer Room
Write Your U.S. Senators About Supreme Court Nominee
The nomination of Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court poses a serious long-term threat to our democratic freedoms, reproductive justice, and religious liberties. UUs must let our senators know our views. This Sunday, Sept. 9, come by the UUs for Social Justice's ( UUSJ) "Write Here! Write Now!" table in Fellowship Hall to write a personal letter to your Senators. Fact sheets and supplies will be available. Or write your letter in advance and drop it off. UUSJ's Capitol Hill Advocacy Corps will hand-deliver the letters on Sept. 11. Contact Lavona Grow at

Date: Sunday, Sept. 9, following both services 
Location: Write Here, Write Now! table in Fellowship Hall
Meet the Artist September 9
Paintings by Morgan Norwood in Center Gallery
This is your last chance to take in the beautiful ethereal images of Arlington artist Morgan Norwood on display in the Center Gallery. The show closes soon. You are invited to an artist reception on September 15 when Norwood will discuss her background in science and how it influences her visual appreciation of the relationships between the natural world and human physiology and how it plays out in her art. Artist statement here.
Time: Saturday, September 15, 5-7 p.m.
Location: Center Gallery
African American Book Sharing Circle Sept. 21: Barracoon
UUCA's African American Book Sharing Circle will discuss Barracoon, by Zora Neale Hurston, on September 21. While this is a newly published book, the reality is that this story has spent more than 60 years in Howard University’s library where only scholars had access to it. The book is based on a series of conversations Hurston had with Cudjo Lewis, a slave who was brought to this country aboard the last slave ship. Lewis’s account of his journey to America makes the book unique since most slave narratives focus on life in this country, not the journey to America. Hurston's attempt to publish in the 1930s was rejected due to her refusal to change the language from the common dialect to more standard English. All are welcome to participate. For more details, click here, or contact Linda Lutes Corsoro at or Pat Findikoglu at for details.

Date: Friday, September 21, 7:30 p.m.
Location: UUCA - Room TBA
Better Angels Skills Workshop: How to Talk Across the Political Divide
There's a lot of stress these days among family members and friends who are divided politically, and the run-up to the November midterm elections can make these relationships even more challenging. Please join fellow UUCA-ers for a Better Angels Skills Workshop to learn strategies for having respectful conversations that clarify motivations, search for common ground, and affirm the importance of the relationship even while acknowledging differences. Questions? Contact Sarah Yue, Registration here.

Date: Saturday, September 29, 2-4:30 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
8th Principle Information Meeting
The Unitarian Universalist Association ( UUA) is considering the addition of an 8th principle to the 7 principles of the UUA Covenant. UUCA members will vote on whether to adopt the principle at a congregational meeting later this church year. The text of the proposed principle says:

We the member congregations of the Unitarian Universalist Association, covenant to affirm and promote journeying toward spiritual wholeness by building a diverse, multicultural Beloved Community by our actions that accountably dismantle racism and other oppressions in ourselves and our institutions.

To learn more, click here.

Time: Sunday, September 30, following 9:15 & 11:15 services
Location: Center Gallery
Registration for Live the Pledge to End Racism Workshop
Whether you have had previous anti-racism training, or have never taken a workshop about racism, this two-day workshop will challenge you to deepen your commitment to work toward dismantling white supremacy. Participants explore the history of racism, the concept of implicit bias, the effects of micro-aggressions, the results of structural and institutional racism, and the contemporary Movement for Black Lives. Methods include readings, personal reflection, small group discussion, role plays, and videos. This workshop is specifically designed for people who participate in a faith community. It is in that context that we deepen our understanding, our relationships, and our connection with the wider community. The workshop is a two-day commitment. Questions? Contact Ann Ulmschneider,

Register here by October 1.

Dates: Saturdays, October 13 AND November 10, 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
Music Ministry
UUCA's Adult Choir - Sanctuary Singers - Returns
First rehearsal is tonight! After a summer break, UUCA's adult choir, Sanctuary Singers, will return to our Sunday worship services. Their first rehearsal of the season is on Thursday, September 6 , and will begin with a potluck dinner at 6:30 p.m. The actual rehearsal begins with a warming of the pipes at 7:30 p.m.

This is a great time to give the choir a try! No audition required. No musical experience required. Just an appreciation of making uplifting music together in community.

Coming: Information on the rest of UUCA's Music Ministry--watch this space!

Questions? Contact Mimi Bornstein ,

Time: Thursday, September 6, 6:30 p.m potluck; 7:30 p.m. rehearsal
Location: Center Gallery 
Youth Choir & Songwriting Program
UUCA Youth are invited to join the new Youth Choir & Songwriting Program with Maya Rogers, UUCA's Artist in Residence and an award-winning singer/songwriter. Our Youth will have a chance to explore the craft of songwriting and group singing as a means of creative expression while fostering a sense of belonging and community. No singing or songwriting experience is necessary to participate.

The group starts Sunday, September 23, 12:30-2:30 p.m., with subsequent group meetings the 2nd & 4th Sundays of the month. Questions? Contact Mimi Bornstein ,

Time: Sunday, September 23, 12:30-2:30 p.m.
Location: Sanctuary
Congregational Life
UUCA Round Robin Bridge
It’s time to play bridge again! On Friday evening, September 7, at 7:00 p.m., the Round Robin Bridge Group will kick off its 2018-2019 season in Fellowship Hall. Come with or without a partner. We meet at church to play 12 hands, update our roster, and match any new players. If you would like snacks or drinks, please bring them. Questions? Contact Bill Reilly,, 571-332-2854.

Time: Friday, September 7, 7:00 p.m.
Location: Fellowship Hall
Day Alliance Speaker Series
"The General's Son, Journey of an Israeli in Palestine"
A Talk by Miko Peled, Author and Human Rights Activist

Everyone is welcome to come hear a talk by Miko Peled, "The General's Son, Journey of an Israeli in Palestine" -- the first in the 2018-19 Day Alliance speaker series. The talk will conclude with an optional catered lunch. Miko Peled is a writer and human rights activist born and raised in Jerusalem. He is considered by many to be one of the clearest voices calling for justice in Palestine, and the creation of a single democracy with equal rights on all of historic Palestine. Peled will talk about the work in which his family has been involved since his grandparents immigrated to Palestine in the early 20th century, as part of the Zionist project. Peled’s maternal grandfather was a signer on the Israeli Declaration of Independence; his father was a General in the Israeli army and in the 1970's his father pioneered the Israeli Palestinian dialogue and eventually met with Yasser Arafat. 

Coffee and conversation begin at 10:30 a.m. The talk will begin at 11 a.m. Everyone is welcome for the talk without reservations. Reservation are required for the lunch that begins at noon. RSVP by September 6. More information and reservations here.

Time: Tuesday, September 11, 10:30 a.m. Coffee & Conversation; 11 a.m. Talk; 12 p.m. Luncheon
Location: Center Gallery
Happy Hour
UUCA's first Happy Hour of our new church season will be on Wednesday, September 12. Now that our summer is coming to a close, let's get back together and catch up with old friends and take the opportunity to make new friends. This month’s happy hour is sponsored by the Spanish Covenant Group. They will be sharing food and drinks from Bolivia, Venezuela and Peru and also dressing in traditional clothes. Bring a beverage or snack to share (beer, wine or non-alcoholic) if you like.

Date: Wednesday, Sept 12, 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Location: Fellowship Hall
Sunday Morning Ambassador Volunteers Needed
Would you like to help with Sunday services and meet new people? We have an immediate need for Ushers, Greeters (outside, upstairs, and downstairs) and Coffee Servers. You’ll help with one service a month or you can be a substitute. Training is provided! Contact
10-Part Experiential Retreat Program
The Soul of Aging
What does it mean to be growing older? What image comes to your mind when you think of aging? Most of us tend to think of aging as dealing with health issues and letting go of life. In fact, growing older can and ought to be quite the opposite experience. As we grow older, we begin to look at life differently. We come to learn from our shared experience, to mature in spiritual presence. Indeed, as we age, we are called “to sage,” to grow in maturity and wisdom, to become wise elders radiating spiritual vitality, love and peace. One is never too young to begin Saging! Read further details here. Register with David McTaggart at, 703-835-6944.

The Soul of Aging is a licensed curriculum of Parker J. Palmer’s Center for Courage and Renewal , and is based upon the Center’s “Circle of Trust” approach to small group ministry. Twenty-six UUCAers have already participated in The Soul of Aging program. An additional 25 have experienced the Circles of Trust approach to spiritual awakening in a year-long “Leading From Within” weekend retreat series. 
HUUmanists Meet Sept. 11
Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted, perhaps by volcanoes or in the last one by the impact of a large asteroid. UUCA HUUmanists and friends will hear a review of the Pulitzer Prize winning book The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert in which she argues that the earth may be in the midst of a modern, man-made, sixth extinction. We will also view a portion of a documentary film Racing Extinction, which deals with several examples of the efforts of scientists and volunteers to protect endangered species. All are welcome. For further information contact Jere Cummins at

Date: Tuesday, September 11, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Board Room
Register for a Covenant Group Today!

Online registration is open for UUCA's small group ministry--Covenant Groups!  Register here today! Once the groups are full, registration will be closed. Please remember that signing up involves a commitment to regular attendance throughout the year. 

This year we have a number of non-Soul Matters groups as well as some Soul Matters groups with a special emphasis.  Take a look here to see this year's great selection.    

In Covenant Groups we explore our spirituality, build relationships, and provide service to UUCA and the wider community. These small groups allow us to share what touches our hearts and souls with others in a safe setting. Groups of 8 to 12 people meet monthly from October to June at church or in homes. A trained facilitator leads each group using written and online resources to enhance communication. Signing up indicates an intention to attend all nine meetings.

Note: This year all registration is online. There will be laptops and Covenant Group Strategy Team members available after Sunday services on September 9, 16, and 23 for those who need help registering online. 

For questions, email or call Hank Dahlstrom, 703-573-3538.
Flower Ministry Secret: Grocery Store Flowers Transformed
UUCA's Flower Ministry Team is hosting a Hillwood Museum arranger who will conduct a class on how to transform simple grocery store flowers into beautiful arrangements. This is a free class and open to all. Parent/child (at least 10 years old) groups are welcome. Participants must bring their own grocery store or garden flowers and shears. Registration is limited to 12 people and required. For more details and to register, email Jennifer Wright at

Date: Saturday, October 6, 10 a.m. - Noon
Location: Room 13/15

AND, please consider volunteering with the Flower Ministry Team. No experience needed; mentoring is provided. Whether you’d like to prepare arrangements for the Welcome Desk, the Candle Tables, or help with special services or both, let Jennifer Wright know about your interest. We’d love to expand our team. 
New UU Class
Unitarian Universalism is a way of thinking and being in the world. It is a faith discipline, enriched by faith traditions, that forms the foundation for a way to live this life. It matters how we conduct our lives and work to make the world a better place. Unitarian Universalism wants each of us to know why. It challenges us to deepen our own faith principles and practices in response to our own experience and, whenever possible, to stand on the side of love. There will be plenty of chances to ask questions and to get to know others in the class. It's also part of the path to membership at UUCA.  Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley and Sarah Masters will be leading the class.

The class is free, but registration is required.  Register here. Select the date of the class you'd like to attend in the New UU box, then enter the names of attendees at the bottom of the form. Free childcare is available upon request. This is a one-time class. It will be offered again on Tuesday, November 13, 5:30-9:00 p.m. Questions? Contact Sarah Masters, Director of Congregational Life,

Time: Sunday, September 23, 1:00-4:30 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
Wheel of Life
Congratulations to Barbara and Michael Hynak on the birth of their first grandson, Sebastian Miguel Hynak, born July 26. 

Our condolences to
  • Diane Dorius and family on the death of her husband, Andy Gasparich, who died Thursday, August 30.
  • Marianna Cordozo on the death of her father, John Hall Rouse, who died September 4. A memorial service will be held in our sanctuary on Sunday, September 16, 3 p.m.
  • Anna Boyd on the death of her husband Bo Boyd, who died August 11.
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Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, VA
4444 Arlington Blvd
Arlington, Virginia
Call: (703) 892-2565