Connections Newsletter
All the news you need to know to connect, grow, and serve.
United Nations Sunday, October 21, 9:15 & 11:15 a.m.
"As the UN Addresses Climate Change and Rising Global Migration Levels, Where is US Leadership?"
Ambassador Bliss photo
On this United Nations Sunday, UUCA is especially honored to have as our guest speaker Ambassador Donald T. Bliss, Retired. Ambassador Bliss, Permanent Representative, US Council of International Aviation Organization, Former President UN Association-USA, Washington DC Chapter, and member of Cedar Lane UU Church, will speak on GLOBAL WARMING and MASSIVE IMMIGRATION from a UU prospective. Read more.

Bob Blinn is the Worship Associate. Music is by the children's choirs--Chalice Choir and TrUUbadours, and the adult choir, Sanctuary Singers, both under the direction of Mimi Bornstein, Director of Music Ministries.
Friday Morning Devotions
We invite you to smooth the path into the weekend with a half-hour of meditation followed by shared reflections each Friday morning beginning at 7 a.m. Please contact in advance either David McTaggart ( ) or Gregg Forte ( ). A ride is available afterward to Ballston Metro.

Date: Each Friday, 7:00 a.m.
Location: Room 20 (Youth Room) 
MoonFire Community Ritual
MoonFire's regular third Sunday ritual for this month is a "Celebration of Community" ritual. Come and join us as we weave the web of Community! Please bring an item to place on the altar, something that symbolizes what MoonFire has meant to you in the past year. As always, a potluck will follow the ritual. For further information on MoonFire, please visit

Date: Sunday, October 21, 1:30 p.m.
Location: Chapel
MoonFire Child-Friendly Samhain Ritual
Families and friends, are welcome to MoonFire for a child-centered Samhain Ritual. We will celebrate our ancestors by doing art projects that connect us with those who have gone before. There will be no separate childcare. A light meal will be provided; you are welcome to bring a side dish. For more information on MoonFire, click here or email
Date: Sunday, October 27, 5 p.m.
Location: Fellowship Hall
Church Matters
Office on the Move
Just a quick update on some moves around the office. As most of you know, we welcomed Walter Clark, our new Ministerial Assistant, to the UUCA staff team this week. In an effort to create collaborative space for the entire team, we are working to transform the upper level library into a staff office. UUCA member  Linda Lutes has worked many hours sifting through the books and cataloging them. When Mimi Bornstein arrived at UUCA, we wanted to include her in all the staff happenings so we moved her into my former office (Tamara). With Walter joining the staff we are again making adjustments. Walter will have the office now occupied by Mimi. Mimi will move into the library space. This transition will take a few weeks and the library will move downstairs to room 13/15 now known as the parlor. Linda will continue to sort through books as we blend the books in 13/15 with the current collection. Please join me in welcoming Water to the team AND thanking Linda for her many contributions seen and unseen.
-- Tamara Srader
Chief Administrative Officer
Thank You AUCP!
A HUGE thank you goes to all the AUCP ( Arlington Unitarian Cooperative Preschool) volunteers for filling in the beds between the playground and parking lot with much-needed mulch. This past Saturday, a crew of AUCP volunteers replenished the playground with new mulch. There was mulch left over and they took it upon themselves to also cover the beds along the outside of the playground (AUCP is responsible for mulching inside the playground). And, the beautiful fall mum plantings are also thanks to AUCP volunteers. The mums were donated by Gay Cima (they were part of Ron Cima's memorial service) and the labor to plant them provided by AUCP volunteers. Thank you AUCP for going above and beyond!
Ministry Matters
What I Love About Our Faith
By Walter Clark , Ministerial Assistant,
I grew up in church. From first grade until I left for college I was a part of the Lutheran Memorial Church of Erie, Penn. My mother joined the church because members paid reduced tuition to the attached elementary school. She made sure the theology didn’t clash with what she believed of course, but the tuition reduction was a big draw.

She worked in the school’s before and after school programs to supplement her income. This meant I was in that building from 6:30 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. The church secretary, the pastor, and the youth director all knew who I was and, being a talkative kid, let me invade their office space. It was my second home and the entire staff were my adopted parents. I became an alter boy, a member of the youth group, a youth delegate for the Lutheran national synod meeting and a member of the clown ministry team. I loved being a part of the church. It was literally my home.
The church didn’t shy away from tough questions. As a teenager, I brought a pop song to the youth pastor that asked the question, “Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people?” Instead of giving me a boiler-plate answer of “God works in mysterious ways,” she asked me to bring the song to our next youth group meeting and we would discuss it. She encouraged me to ask questions about my faith, telling me that (paraphrasing Socrates) the unexamined faith was not worth having. This was the theology I grew up with, one that asks tough questions and is comfortable not having all of the answers. Read more.
Lifespan Religious Education
What's Up in RE This Sunday

  • Preschool-1st Grade: Spirit Play
  • Elementary Grades: UU Heroes
  • 5th Grade: Bible Studies
  • 6th Grade: MakerSpace
  • 7th Grade: Classroom
  • 8th Grade: OWL
  • High School: Bake Sale 
Youth Group Bake Sale
The Youth Group is hosting a bake sale after both services this Sunday, so come hungry for breakfast treats and plan on taking home dessert. In addition, Thanksgiving Pie Sales open this Sunday! Buy your pies from the UUCA youth group this year! We will take orders for pies that the youth and UUCA members will bake for you. The pies will be available for pick up November 18.
Adult Education @ UUCA
Registration for the UUCA Adult RE program is now open here.

Stretching Your Legacy Dollars 
w/ Legacy Team. The UUA is matching new or updated legacy gifts to UUCA and other UU groups. Join Diane Ullius to learn how this works and why you should do it. Date: Wednesday, October 24, 7-8:30 p.m.

Gardening for Pollinators 
w/ DIG (Doing it Green) Team. Naturalist Alonso Abugattas will present a program on Gardening for Pollinators. Alonso is the Natural Resources Manager for the Arlington County Department of Parks and Recreation and the co-chair for the Beltway Chapter of Region 2 of the National Association for Interpretation and a co-founder of the Washington Area Butterfly Club. Date: Wednesday, October 24, 7-8:30 p.m.

Life and Writings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 
w/ Bill Fogarty. This three session offering provides an historical and theological analysis of the life and writings of Dr. King, with an emphasis on the spiritual and intellectual influences on King's ministry, and the major historical events of Dr. King's life. Dates: October 17, 24 and November 7, 7-8:30 p.m.

Class descriptions here .

For more information visit the registration page here .
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
Congregational Life
First UUCA Casino Night+
Bet on UUCA! Support our liberal religious community at our Casino night on November 3. Each ticket gets you $10,000 of funny money. You can win and purchase additional money throughout the night which you can apply to raffles and our mini silent and live auction of dinners and vacations. It's all about gambling for good! Tickets are on sale in person in Fellowship Hall on Sundays and available online here .

Date: Saturday, November 3, 6:30-10 p.m.
Location: Center Gallery & Fellowship Hall
Young Adult Brunch
Come join other young adults (18-40) for food and conversation! After second service downstairs, every other Sunday we come together to hang out with friends old and new and break bread together. It's a casual gathering and a good opportunity to ask any questions you have about the church or the YA program!

Date: Sunday, October 21, after 2nd service
Location: Youth Room
Sign-up TODAY
Circle Dinners
"I love Circle Dinners! All my best friends at church have been met through Circle Dinners!
--Suzi K.

UUCA's Circle Dinners are a great way to meet and make new friends over a shared meal. You can choose between in-home dinners or gathering at a restaurant. There are no agendas and no meetings, just good food and fellowship. For more details and to sign up, click here.
UU B&B Program
Did you know there is a robust UU B&B program and UUCA takes part? Many UU congregations offer in-home lodging at below-market rates in some of the most desirable destinations across the U.S. And our area is certainly one of the desirable destinations. So keep in mind when you have visiting family and friends and are short on space, you can use UUCA's B&B program. Also, if you have an extra bedroom and enjoy hosting people in your home, please contact for more information on how you can be a host. The lodging fee benefits UUCA's general fund.

B&B in Williamsburg
The holidays will be here soon and Williamsburg is a popular destination for its Grand Illumination in December and the Winter Jazz Fest in January. Or perhaps you have a graduation at William & Mary this spring or you simply want to visit Colonial Williamsburg. For details on the Williamsburg Unitarian Universalist Church B&B accommodations, visit their website here or contact Kerry Mellette,
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. 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. 

Date: Tuesday, November 13, 6-9 p.m.
Location: Fellowship Hall
Men's Book Group
The Men's Book Group will meet on Sunday, November 11, 7:30 p.m. to discuss Pachinko, by Min Jin Lee. It was a National Book Award finalist in 2017. Copies are available in local libraries, but the waiting list is long. If there are any questions about the group and its meetings, please email Ken Marshall,
Divine Reading
Divine Reading group is now reading SHORT STORIES, so this is a great time to try it out, no pre-reading required! In this group, we treat secular texts as sacred, trusting that by delving into the text, we will find wisdom and truth. Based on the structure of Harry Potter and the Sacred Text podcast, but with different books. Past books have included A Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, A Wrinkle in Time, and Kindred by Octavia Butler. We typically meet in the Youth Room but this week we will be in Room 16.

Dates: Every other Thursday. 7-9 pm. October 18, November 1, 15 
Faith in Action
Share-the-Plate October 21: UU United Nations Office
Sunday's STP offerings will be shared with the UU United Nations Office. Your voice at the United Nations, the Unitarian Universalist Association's United Nations Office ( UU-UNO) is engaged in international advocacy work at the UN. From the recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, to leading the faith caucus to establish the International Criminal Court, to overcoming UN apathy about sexual orientation and gender identity issues, the UU-UNO has a long history of providing strong leadership in all aspects of human rights at a policy level. Programs they have advanced include working on educational support and healthcare access to children made vulnerable by HIV/AIDs in Ghana; bringing LGBTQ human rights to the forefront of the UN agenda; an international bill of rights for women; climate justice global action in the name of a sustainable future for all; and racial justice, bringing the US movement for Black Lives Matter to a global stage.

Donations are accepted for each week's STP recipient through the following Saturday at midnight.  Make online donations here.  
You Don’t Have to Wait Until the Midterms to Make a Difference
VOICE, Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement, would like to deeply thank everyone who was able to contribute to Give-the-Plate this past Sunday. In case we didn’t get to speak with you before or after the service, we want you to know it isn’t too late to be a part of our mission for the people of Virginia. This upcoming Sunday, October 21, the full membership of VOICE will be assembling for an Action with Governor Ralph Northam and Attorney General Mark Herring, to hear how they plan to implement our key issues:
  • Invest in Our Children
  • Reform the Criminal Justice System
  • Keep Families Together

UUCA Arlington has always had a strong presence at VOICE Actions, and if you join us, our power-in-numbers can turn promises into actions. To make it easy for everyone, we have arranged for buses and carpools to leave the UUCA parking lot at 
3 p.m. RSVP: If you are driving, the action will be held at Fairfax High School, 3501 Rebel Run, Fairfax. The event is scheduled for Sunday, October 21, 3:30 to 5:30 p.m.
Register for Nov. 17
Allyship Workshop
As part of our congregation's Live the Pledge campaign to end racism, UUCA is hosting another racial justice Allyship Workshop, facilitated by the local nonprofit, Service Never Sleeps. Over 200 UUCAers have already taken this training. Now it’s your turn. This workshop will teach you about the causes of racial injustice, how to be an effective ally for marginalized communities of color, and how to actively influence and educate others. More information and sign up here. UUCA contact Alex Ziehm,

Date: Saturday, November 17, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
Teach a Dreamer to Drive
Here is a different and unique way to be of service to someone in need. One of this year's Dream Project scholarship recipients is in need of help with learning to drive. With school and work, he's only available on Wednesday or Saturday and Sunday after 4 p.m. For more information, contact Lizzette Arias ,
An Exploration of Fences
The African American Book Sharing Circle will explore Fences, the 1985 play by American playwright August Wilson. Set in the 1950s, it is the sixth in Wilson's ten-part "Pittsburgh Cycle" that describes the African-American experience through characters in their daily lives. The play won the 1987 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the 1987 Tony Award for Best Play. 

Although August Wilson never graduated from high school; this did not stop him from writing, influencing contemporary drama, and advocating for African-American dramatists, actors, and directors.

Wilson's Pittsburgh Cycle consists of ten plays with each set in a different decade. These plays sketch the Black experience in the 20th century and according to Wilson "raise consciousness through theater" and echo "the poetry in the everyday language of black America."

This year, the book sharing will continue to explore fiction and nonfiction by African-American writers and include drama, poetry, and humor. Our goal is to hear African American voices and learn from these African American experiences. We hope to see you on October 19.  For more information, please contact Linda Lutes Corsoro, or Pat Findikoglu,

Date: Friday, October 19, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Welcome Room
Meet UUCA's Accompaniers
UUCA’s most recent Accompaniers in Guatemala--CLARA LINCOLN and CHRIS SHORNE --will be at church to meet everyone and share reflections of their experiences as Accompaniers. At a luncheon in the Center after second service, they will be joined by BRIDGET BREHEN, Director of our Human Rights partner NISGUA, and AMANDA KISTLER, NISGUA Board Chair, both of whom are former Accompaniers themselves. Don’t miss this important celebration of this vibrant UUCA human rights partnership.

Date: Sunday, October 28, 12:30 p.m.
Location: Center Gallery
Joint Kol Ami and UUCA Book Study Group
Congregants from UUCA and Kol Ami are meeting regularly on the last Sunday of each month at 7 p.m. in the UUCA Chapel to study and discuss books related to Israel and Palestine. On Sunday, October 28, the discussion will be stories five through eight from Kingdom of Olives and Ash: Writers Confront the Occupation. The book is edited by Michael Chabon and Ayelet Waldman and contains a collection of true stories by them and 24 other international writers.   Herb Levy of Kol Ami and Allan Kellum of UUCA’s UUJME Chapter are convening the study group. This book study group is open to all from UUCA and Kol Ami who are interested. Questions?Contacts Herb (703-380-3151) or Allan (703-599-2560).
Buckingham Coat Drive
It’s time to clean out our closets for our annual Buckingham coat 
drive! Please bring your clean, gently-used men, women, and children’s coats and jackets to church on November 4.  Boxes will be available in the church lobbies. Many of our Buckingham neighbors are unprepared for Arlington winters and very much appreciate your donations.  
DIG Workdays
The Do It Green Team welcomes your help with fall plantings and general grounds maintenance on Saturday, October 27, 10 a.m. to noon. Everyone is welcome--youngsters, elders, singles, couples and especially groups! Bring gardening tools if you have them. Extras will be available. No experience needed, just a desire to tend and care for Mother Earth.

Date: October 27, 10 a.m. - noon
Location: UUCA grounds
Music Ministry
UUCA Sanctuary Singers and Music Ministry Presents
Through music and song, come fly away to some of our nation's iconic vacation spots. This armchair musical trip will feature better-than-airline nosh and a cash bar. Tickets are $20 and can be purchased online HERE or in Fellowship Hall on Sundays. Proceeds benefit the many UUCA church ministries.
UUCA Handbell Program Accepting New Ringers
The UUCA handbell program is accepting new ringers for the 2018-2019 season. Three different handbell choirs offer ringing opportunities for all levels of experience, from novice to advanced; and for all ages, from third grade through adult. So there’s bound to be a place for you!

Polymnia is a more advanced group of handbell ringers who ring for UUCA services and concerts, as well as for other churches and organizations. They regularly attend festivals sponsored by the Handbell Musicians of America and other organizations. Polymnia rehearses on Tuesday evenings from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.

Crescendo is an intermediate ensemble open to everyone with handbell experience. Crescendo rehearses on Tuesday evenings from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m.

Bellissimo is a multi-generational group open to everyone in grade 3 through adult. No previous handbell experience is required. Bellissimo rehearses on Sunday mornings from 10:30 to 11:05 a.m.

UUCA has five octaves of Schulmerich handbells and handchimes; all rehearsals are held in the music room on the lower level. If you’d like to become a UUCA bell ringer, or would simply like more information, contact Ken Bissell, Director of Handbells, at 703-622-2849 or So come join us as we make music TOGETHER!
Sanctuary Singers
UUCA's adult choir, Sanctuary Singers, holds rehearsals each Thursday, at 7:15 p.m. (NOT 7:30 as previously printed)

Mark your calendar for November 11
Plan on joining in with our Inter-Generational Choir
UUCA's Inter-Generational choir is open to all ages and abilities. It offers fun community-building through song. No commitment of attending regular rehearsals. This "pop-up" choir rehearses in the Sanctuary at 10:30 a.m. and sings the same day during the second service. Plan on joining in on any of these Sundays: Nov. 11, Dec. 24, Jan. 27, Mar. 24, and May 5. Questions? Contact Mimi Bornstein,

Music pamphlet with more details here.

Wheel of Life
Congratulations to Nina & Christopher Doorley on the birth of Bryce Alexander Besser Doorley on September 12!
NEW newsletter deadline: Connections deadline for submissions is EACH Monday at noon with publication on Wednesday. See below on how to submit an announcement.
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Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, VA
4444 Arlington Blvd
Arlington, Virginia
Call: (703) 892-2565