Windows Weekly October 10, 2019
Albany UU Windows Weekly
Welcome to Windows Weekly, Albany UU's central source for news and updates. Enjoy!

W e welcome everyone. Our Unitarian Universalist community seeks truth and deeper meaning, pursues justice through inspired action, and cultivates compassion and love for all connected by the web of life .
Sunday Service 10:00 AM
October 13, “The Grace of Acceptance,”
Dan Miyake

Everyone has an innate need to feel accepted. When we experience the grace of acceptance, it is as if space opens up for us to live into our potential without having to live under the shadow of judgment, misunderstanding, micro-aggression, or fear. For LGBTQ people, being fully accepted (rather than just tolerated) is a critical yet often missing aspect of life. How can Albany UU become more accepting and welcoming to the LGBTQ community?

Music: Musician- Ann Brandon, piano; Vocal Ensemble- Dick Dana, Linda Hunt, Chris Jensen, Randy Rosette

HYMN 389:  Gathered Here
HYMN 1014:  Standing on the Side of Love
HYMN 1053:  How Could Anyone

Here is a place  you might find the words to our hymns.

10:00 am

October 20, “Whose Are You?” Leah Purcell

We all know that belonging is not just about place, but people as well. Quaker teacher, Douglas Steer gets at this beautifully: “The ancient question, ‘Who am I?’ inevitably leads to a deeper one: ‘Whose am I?’ – because there is no identity outside of relationship. You cannot be a person by yourself. To ask “Whose am I” is to extend the question and wonder…”

This service for all ages is much like our regular services but more interactive, and with a shorter sermon. Childcare for children ages 7 and under will be available after the story in the service.

Music: Musician- Ann Brandon, organ

October 27, “Wheel of Life Service:
A Jack-o-lantern’s Heart”
Each year, when some religious traditions believe the veil is thin between the worlds of the living and dead, we honor major life transitions. Please bring a picture, memento or object that remembers a birth, a life transition such as gender identity, maturity, graduation, marriage, employment, ability changes, retirement, loss or death. We will collect them on an altar for recognition and appreciation during our service. The theme of the service this year will be guided by Peter Mayer’s song “John’s Garden” which illustrates the wheel of life through the spiritual journey of some little pumpkins.

Music: Choir, Choir Director- Chris Jensen, Musician- Ann Brandon, piano; Guest Musician-- John Sherman, guitar



Annual Evacuation Drill
We will have our annual evacuation drill near the end of service THIS Sunday, Oct. 13 . There will be a verbal announcement and printed instructions in your Order of Service that day explaining how the drill will work. The Albany Fire department will have a fire truck at the Robin and West St. point for the younger children to enjoy.

Training and Practice Group for Nonviolent Communication
Two different options! (Sign up for either Session 1 or 2)
Session 1: Thursdays, Oct. 24 and 31, Nov. 7, 14 and 21, and Dec. 5,
6:30-8:30 pm (sign up by Oct. 2 1) OR
Session 2: Thursdays, Nov. 7, 14 and 21, Dec. 5 and 12, 12:30-2:30 pm ( sign up by Oct. 28 )

This training and practice group will offer an environment of mutual learning and support in the practice of nonviolent communication.
To register: send an email to with subject line: NVC Training & Practice Group Registration. Include in the body, which session
number, cell phone number and email address.

For more information contact Philomena Moriarty: or

Pie Crusts
It's time to make the pie crusts for those delicious apple and pumpkin pies. We are looking for 3-4 folks who would like to learn the process and help in the coming weeks. We have openings on several afternoons. Please contact Sandy Stone: 518-489-8293.

We need to freeze the pie crusts and, soon, the pies. If you have anything you would like to keep that's currently in the freezer, please take it home. On Monday, Oct. 14 , it will be emptied and anything in there will be tossed.  

Do you have a comfy, fairly attractive couch to donate?
The youth group is meeting in Room B-8 because the group is bigger and better attended so...they need more space. They are asking for a donation of a couch to make their meetings more comfortable. There will still be room in B-8 for adult meetings at other times and for rentals. If you have such a couch, please contact Leah Purcell at We have a volunteer with a van to move it.

Understudy Needed
If you like to observe and record during a fast-paced event, we have just the one night volunteer job for you! The Auction Committee needs a person willing to learn the task of recording bids during the live auction on next March 21st. You would learn the ropes from our expert recorder, Kathy Harris.
Please contact Chair Randy Rosette at  or 518-783-2637 for more details.

Warmth for the Homeless
It is time again to gather blankets, sleeping bags, warm coats, etc. for those experiencing homelessness. Please put them in the bin in the coatroom. Thanks you!
Sunday Schedule

9:00 AM
- Mindfulness Meditation, Sanctuary

9:45 AM
- Nursery/Toddler Rooms open

10:00 AM
- Service, Community Hall
- Religious Exploration for Children and Youth

11:00 AM
- Coffee Hour, Channing Hall

11:45 AM
- Inclusivity and Intersectionality Team, Room B-7
- Social Responsibilities Council, Room 26

5:30 PM
- Walker Book Group, Channing Hall

Quick Links

Denominational Affairs Links

Helpful Local Links

Sign up for a class or event

- Send and email to:
- Sign up at the Sign Up Site in Channing Hall
- Call the church office, 518.463.7135
If childcare is offered for the event, please let us know you need it when you register, including names and ages of children.

Offering envelopes

We appreciate donations of cash during the offering that occurs as part of our Sunday service. If you would like to have cash contributions recorded and acknowledged in writing for tax purposes at the end of the calendar year, please use and write your name on one of the envelopes that are available on the table in the Community Hall lobby. Thank you very much for your generosity.
Albany UU will again be collecting for Day of Simple Giving sponsored by Grassroots Givers.

This year, we're being asked to provide dish washing detergent.

Day of Simple Giving is a community service celebration, on Saturday, Nov. 16, 10 am-1 pm at St. Sophia's Greek Church, 440 Whitehall Road, Albany, where 300 volunteers, from preschoolers to seniors work side by side assembling over $30,000 worth of practical gifts and holiday treats for neighbors in need.

To volunteer your time on Nov. 16, RSVP to  or (518) 599-5157. To donate dish washing detergent, bring it to Albany UU and put it in the marked bin in the coatroom. Thank you.

Transforming Hearts: Transgender Inclusion in Congregations
Led by Rev. Sam Trumbore and Dan Miyake
Begins Tuesday, Oct. 22, 7:00pm (continues 11/5 & 19, 12/3 & 17, 1/14)
This course is for those who want to increase their knowledge and skills to help our congregation become fully inclusive and affirming of the full breadth of gender diversity. Over six sessions we will deeply explore the intersection of trans identity, spirituality, and faith community to gain the grounding, context, and skills for this transformative work. This course is for everyone  from novices on trans identity to those with decades of life experience. Rather than simply offering a “trans 101,” this class pushes participants to the next level of congregational welcome, relationship-building, and skills-building. It counters mainstream narratives about who trans people are; supports understanding of non-binary identities (such as genderqueer, agender, and two spirit); and employs a deeply intersectional approach.
Patti Jo Newell

As you know, the Board has focused its work over the past several years on the different roles of governance and ministry in our congregation. A key feature of that work was the now-defunct Governance Working Group (GWG), which was charged by the Board in 2017 to undertake this review. In its final report, the GWG recommended the following changes to Albany UU’s governance structure: a smaller board of trustees with a more strategic focus; the creation of the Program Team (now-named Ministries & Operations Team) to lead and coordinate ministry; and a simpler organizational structure, to be reflected in future changes to the bylaws.

The Ministries & Operations Team is finally a reality, after many incarnations. And we promise this is the last of the name changes. Ministries & Operations better captures the scope of the work they will do, which is to lead and coordinate the volunteer and paid staff toward the fulfillment of the vision, mission, and goals of our congregation.

Committees and councils can expect to soon hear from Ministries & Operations for the purposes of introducing themselves and starting a conversation to explore together how it can support your work and promote it in the context of the congregation’s vision and mission. Ministries & Operations Team is appointed by the Board and currently includes Rev. Sam, Leah Purcell, Tammy Hathaway, Barb Manning, co-chair of membership, Matt Lesniak, co-chair of Social Responsibilities Council, and two former congregational presidents, Jon Newell and Dave Munro.

We also have a very capable Bylaws Team, led by Peggy Sherman, which was charged by the Board to review our current bylaws in the context of the governance changes we seek, as well as general streamlining, and make recommendations. This process is ongoing still.

With Ministries & Operations up and running, the Board will work to “stay out of the weeds” and focus on policy and governance through the following: discerning the congregation’s mission and vision; holding fiduciary responsibility; capturing institutional wisdom by generating policy; assessing the health of the congregation; planning for the congregation’s future, using a three-year rolling plan system; and building and maintaining relationships.

The cornerstone of ALL OF THIS is mission and vision. AND WE CANNOT DO THAT WITHOUT YOU. The Board will be exploring ways to get feedback and input from the congregation on an ongoing basis. We’re not looking to surprise anyone. Our goal is to give expression to the mission and vision of the congregation. I emphasize the multi-dimensionality of this discernment process because we, as a congregation, are not really all that great at participating in such endeavors. But we, the Board, accept the challenge of finding ways to promote fuller participation in a feedback loop and to normalize broad-based discernment on an ongoing basis.

So, what’s in it for you? Well, for all the policy wonks out there in our fair capital city, this is fun! But besides that…I’ll highlight two goals:

a)     This is an opportunity to institutionalize our principles of inclusivity and welcoming. However deeply held these values may be, they are pitted against the formidable inertia of the status quo. Shaking it up requires intentionality. Continuously.
b)     This is also an opportunity to promote and nurture both our volunteers and volunteerism. We can explore untapped potential and find new ways to include newer members and friends. Promote the expertise and experience of seasoned volunteers in the mentoring of new volunteers, and then give them a much-deserved break. Or perhaps some seasoned volunteers would like to explore new roles and untapped potential within themselves. Let’s promote vitality!

So, this is slice of what we’ve been up to; we’ll keep you posted!
And I thank you for this opportunity to serve, and for the trust it represents. Peace.

More from our Blogs

To share your Joy or Sorrow with our Albany UU community, you may submit it on a yellow card during the service or by using our online form.  

Please join us in lighting candles of joy and concern for members:

Jean Bolgatz , who recently lost her husband Abe. Cards may be sent to :
127 Elmgrove Ave., Troy, NY 12180

Jan McCracken , who's joy is that she just closed on her new house in Albany! But, was also diagnosed with cancer. Her treatment will be difficult but her spirits are high and her prognosis very good.
Cards may be sent to:
52 Schumann Rd., Averill Park, NY 12018 (This is Jan's old address but that's OK, cards will get to her.)

Need to Talk? Albany UU Pastoral Care Associates are here to listen!
Our Pastoral Care Associates have been trained in compassionate listening skills and are available to all members and friends of our congregation. To contact a Pastoral Care Associate, email: , contact Rev. Sam Trumbore , the Albany UU office at 518.463.7135, or one of them personally. They are: Sharon Babala, Chuck Manning, Donna Meixner, Dan Miyake, Phil Rich, Randy Rosette, Dee VanRiper and Erick F. vonHausen.

Albany UU Caring Network
The Caring Network (CN) reflects the words of the Albany UU chalice lighting - “to sustain a vital and nurturing religious community.” The CN provide encouragement and short term support to Albany UU members who, due to hospitalization, sickness, loss, or isolation, need assistance. Services typically include transportation to medical appointments, meals and shopping during recovery, and friendly visits and “check in’s” from Caring Network members. Please reach out to the Caring Network if you need.
Walker Book Group 
Join the Walker Book Group for a potluck and discussion this Sunday, October 13 at 5:30 pm in Channing Hall. We will discuss Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan. Learn more here .

Fall Garden Clean-up: All gardeners welcome!
Garden Committee Fall Clean-up will be Thursday Oct. 17, 1:00 - 3:00 pm . Learn more here .

Community Breakfast
It's coming up fast on Saturday, Oct. 19 . Volunteers are needed to make this a good experience for our neighbors and community members. Contact Carol Butt for more details: 518-439-6629 or
-Leah Purcell, Director of Religious Education and Family Ministry (DREFM),

For the Faith Development of the children and youth this Sunday

The nursery/toddler room opens at 9:45 Nell Guilbault, our new childcare worker will start work this Sunday. Nell is a lifelong UU and previously worked in the nursery/toddler room at the UU congregation in Providence, RI. Currently, she also works at a local childcare center.

Children in grade 6 and younger start in Community Hall at 10:00 for the first part of the service.

We’ll have some combined groups for a UU’s in Action Sunday. It will be an opportunity for children in these groups to respond to the story in the service, and learn about a social justice topic or engage in a hands-on social justice project.

Pre-K, K/1 (the Dragons), and 2nd/3rd grade (the Rainbow Duckies) groups will meet together in Room 24/25.

4th grade and 5th/ 6th grade group s meet together in Room B-1.

7th/8th grade OWL will meet in their room, starting at 10:00, as usual

High School YoUUth Group will meet in Room B-8, starting at 10:00. This week the group will have “Philosophy Club” – group discussions.

What parents/caretakers need to know about the Evacuation Drill this Sunday, Oct. 13
The guides will let the children know when the bells are about to ring. The drill takes about 4 minutes. We’ve arranged for the firefighters from the local station to come; they will be parked near the Sanctuary entrance for the children to visit after the drill. Leah Purcell will be away this Sunday. Elizabeth Baldes will take her place in checking in with the guides of each group. She assisted with the drill last year.
  • Please let you child know they must keep with their group outside (even though it’s tempting to go talk to friends and siblings in other groups.)
  • Please do not pick your child up from outside. Their RE guides will bring their groups back inside and you can pick them up there. 

Two ways to make it easier for you to keep track of plans for children and youth .
Timely info is kept our website at the Our Learning Community for Children and Youth  page, which is under Religious Exploration and Family Ministry at  
Here is the link to Leah’s weekly email to RE families. 

-Matt Lesniak, SRC Chair, email

SRC Recommends:

Seeds for Peace Potluck Dinner - Friday, Oct. 11. 6PM, Noor Mosque, 941 River Road, Schenectady
The Ahmadiyya Muslim women and Seeds for Peace are hosting this event, a great opportunity to break bread with friends and neighbors. Women of all faith or no faith are invited to dinner and to process, sort, and pack dried seeds for the next planting season.

The seeds will be sent to less fortunate people in many nations around the world. Seeds for Peace has provided vegetable and flower seeds, for communities in Bosnia, Ukraine, Guatemala, Haiti, Namibia, Uganda, Tanzania, Lesotho, South Africa and Cuba. Other seed recipients include the soup kitchen garden in Saratoga Springs and communities in California, Virginia and Texas.

The event is free. Registration is requested via email , or RSVP Samin Khan @ 518-432-3626/ Linda LeTendre (518) 330-7683 .

Raise Your Voice for End of Life Choice - Save the Date: Conversation Sabbath.  On November 3, Albany UU will join hundreds of congregations taking part in Conversation Sabbath, sponsored by The Conversation Project, an organization founded by former Boston Globe columnist Ellen Goodman. Our Sunday service will reflect UU thinking about end of life issues and inspire you to have “the conversation” with your loved ones and your doctor(s) about your wishes for living well until the end, to make sure they are known and honored. Rev. Sam says, “We think that if we don’t talk about it, it won’t happen. The reality is that it always feels too soon to have the conversation--until it is too late.”    After the service, from 11:30-2:00, Bonnie Edelstein, founding director of Death with Dignity – Albany, will lead a free Conversation Workshop in Community Hall. The workshop will be open to the public and begin with a light lunch. As a workshop participant, you will prepare for having “the conversation” about what matters most to you, and leave with your notes in a workbook.  REGISTRATION: To ensure adequate space, materials and child care, register by November 1 here or at 518-463-7135.  

Preemptive Radical Inclusion: Bear Witness, Save Lives

Fall Gathering of the Hudson Mohawk Cluster of UU Congregations with presenter CB Beal, M. Div, recipient of the UUA’s 2019 Angus MacLean Award for Excellence in Religious Education.
Saturday, October 26, 2019, 9:30 am - 3:30 pm at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Schenectady , 1221 Wendell Ave., Schenectady.

Join other area UUs in Schenectady on Saturday, October 26 , to learn and share new skills and strategies for strengthening and transforming our congregations as we increase equity and justice. We will reflect upon the complexity of privilege, marginalization, and oppression; notice and assess our own perspectives and invite new ones; bear witness to one another; deeply feel our responses, our wondering; and explore how we live out our commitment to justice in our congregational life. We will do this with worship, music, reflection, sharing and bearing witness, hula hoops and post-it notes, video and humor.

This workshop is appropriate for high-school-aged and older.
Childcare will be provided if requested by Monday, Oct. 21.
Lunch will be provided with voluntary donations requested to cover the cost of this and our presenter’s expenses.
Same day registration is OK, but pre-registration is better!!
Tomorrow, October 11, marks the 31st anniversary of National Coming Out Day.

The first National Coming Out Day was created in 1988 by Robert Eichberg and Jean O’Leary in celebration of the second gay march held in Washington, D.C. the year before. Eighteen states participated in this first event, and within two years, all 50 states joined in recognizing the holiday. The day is now recognized and celebrated all over the world as a celebration in honor of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, or non-binary/gender fluid people and their “coming out” stories.

National Coming Out Day reminds us that one of the most powerful resources in the fight for LGBTQ equality and acceptance is the actual “coming out” stories of individuals in the LGBTQ community. These stories, often full of pain, courage, sacrifice, and danger, are moving testimonies to the intrinsic need and right of all people to live as their authentic selves. And for members who identify somewhere within the spectrum of LGBTQ, hearing the stories of others can inspire, comfort, and heal, and most importantly, offer hope for the future. When someone remains closeted out of fear of losing family, jobs, marriages, etc…, they are forced to live a divided life. They often lose hope that their lives will get better or that they will ever be able to be fully themselves.

Homophobia, transphopbia, ignorance,and other types of aggression are still rampant, and are built upon instilling fear by intimidation and the silencing of LGBTQ voices. So, when someone breaks that silence and “comes out” to friends and family, their voice adds to the collective power and strength of these marginalized people. Research tells us that if somebody personally knows a member of the LGBT community, the likelihood that they will be homophobic decreases significantly. As we join in solidarity with our LGBTQ siblings, let us celebrate their stories, add our voices of support to the collective, and continue to work to eradicate senseless hate and bigotry.
Ushers needed
Are you looking for a way to be more involved in what happens on Sunday mornings? Now is your chance! We are looking to deepen our Usher pool and would love for YOU to join. It’s a very simple but very necessary volunteer opportunity. If you’re interested in learning more about being an Usher on Sunday mornings, please contact Dawn Dana: . Thank you!

Sunday Volunteers
Would you like to be involved in the Sunday service in a more meaningful way?
Visit Sunday Hospitality Sign Up to find out about the ways you can volunteer on Sunday morning. We thank you and could not do what we do without YOU!

YOU can make a difference!
We at Albany UU are making an effort to increase our visibility and connectivity online. YOU can help, and it's quick and easy! Simply like, follow and share pages and posts on any of our social media platforms, or leave a positive Facebook or Google review. Google Albany UU or find us here:
Monday, November 4
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Congregation Ohav Shalom
113 New Krumkill Road, Albany 12208

In the West Bank, Palestinians and Israelis live in separate universes without real human contact. Roots/Shorashim/Judur is changing that reality, fostering a grassroots movement of understanding, nonviolence and transformation.

Come hear firsthand the personal stories of Shadi Abu Awwad, a Palestinian activist, and Hanan Schlesinger, an Orthodox rabbi and passionate Zionist settler, who came together – with painful hope – to build dialogue and cooperation.

Info and reservations appreciated for planning at

Our speakers do not come with blueprinted peace plans in hand, but with the deep conviction that human understanding and trust are the prerequisites for lasting justice, freedom, and peace in the land they both call home. Come to learn and be inspired! In these times of increased polarization – nationally and internationally – we have much to learn about how to listen, to open our hearts and minds and support peace.

For more information about Roots visit

This presentation is sponsored by the:
First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany Nigel Wright Fund
and Congregation Ohav Shalom.
Supporters: Capital District Board of Rabbis
Circle Dinners are a great way to get to know other UUs! Sign up now to get together with a small group around a dinner table for food and conversation. Everyone brings a dish to share.
These dinners will take place in the homes of Albany UUs on Saturday, November 2 at 6 PM , and hosts are needed. Sign up by October 23 in Channing Hall or online here
Regular events and meetings
Many of these events and meetings take a hiatus in the summer, check with the church office before coming in.

11:45 AM      Inclusivity Team (2nd)
5:30 PM       Walker Book Group (2nd)
11:45 AM      Social Responsibilities Council (3rd)
11:45 AM      Green Sanctuary Committee (4th)
6:15 PM        Religious Education Council
                               (1st, Nov., Feb., May)
10:00 AM      Philosophy Discussion (weekly)
1:00 PM        Bridge (weekly)
7:00 PM        UU Humanists (3rd)
10:00 AM      Projects & Quilts (weekly)
7:00 PM        Choir Rehearsal (almost weekly)
1:00 PM       All Sides Considered (1st & 3rd)
6:30 PM       Board of Trustees (4th)
Going to miss a Sunday?

You can listen to the entire Albany UU Sunday service at home or on your mobile device. The two most recent services are available as MP3 files on the Albany UU member resource website. Here is how to access:

username: AlbanyUU
password: EEthelredBrown405

Our sermon archive (select Ministry/Sermon Archive on the left website menu) has pdf files of sermons texts (when available) and audio files of sermons. You can also request the office put a service on a CD.
First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany
Parking: Parking is available on the street. On Sundays (and for some special events) Albany UU has permission to use the University at Albany’s Hawley Parking Lot on Robin Street at Washington Avenue.

Office hours (unless otherwise posted)
September-June: Monday-Friday, 9:00-3:00
July-August: Monday–Thursday 9:00-1:00


Building use
To reserve a room for an Albany UU activity or to rent a hall or classroom space , for a personal or non-Albany UU activity, contact Administrative Assistant Sapphire Correa (518.463.7135 or ).

Photo credit: Kathy Hodges
First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany | 518.463.7135| 518.463.1429 | |