Windows Weekly December 24, 2020

Welcome to Windows Weekly, Albany UU's central source for news and updates. Please stay safe and stay connected to your Albany UU Community during this uncertain time in the many ways provided online - all described below.

Please note, you may see announcements in this publication more than once. That is with intent and to ensure that items don't get missed as folks scroll through. Thank you for your understanding.

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Learn more about what's happening with UU Kids and Families by reading the Religious Education publication, RE Roundup.

-Blessings and Be Well
We 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.

Albany UU will be an inclusive, welcoming congregation. Our sacred work is to lift hearts, broaden minds and do justice in the world, in service of building beloved community.

As a congregation with respect for our past and commitment to the future, we draw from the depth and power of our hearts and minds, guided by our Unitarian Universalist principles, to serve our mission and vision. We celebrate the diversity of our identities and experiences, and foster a culture of appreciation, inspiration, and kindness. We honor both the strength of the collective and uniqueness of the individual, willing to support and challenge each other with love and compassion. We entrust ourselves to each other in beloved community, to embolden personal and congregational growth and transformation.
10:00 am

TONIGHT, THURSDAY, Dec 24Christmas Eve Service
(7:30pm with repeat broadcast at 10:00pm)
Join us to hear your favorite Christmas carols, enjoy some heartwarming stories, light candles and sing Silent Night together. Though we will not be able to be in the Sanctuary, we’ll have some video from it and enjoy two moving virtual choir pieces. It will not be the same as being physically present together but the spirit of Christmas will not be stopped on this holy evening. (Use the service link.)

Music provided by special guests AUU Virtual Choir, Chris Bystroff; and Elena Karpoff, Chris Jensen and
Randy Rosette

Sunday, Dec 27, "Stillness - and the Opportunity to Build Love and Community,"
Guest Speaker, Janice Gallagher
In a year when so many of us have had more time to be alone, seeing stillness as an opportunity - to love ourselves and those we are closest to; to intentionally build loving connections and community - can be challenging. What are the opportunities hidden within (sometimes involuntary imposed) stillness for ourselves and our world?

Janice Gallagher is an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at Rutgers University-Newark. She conducted more than two years of fieldwork in Mexico and Colombia, and previously worked as a human rights accompanier in Colombia. Janice holds a PhD in Government from Cornell University and an MA in teaching from Brown University. She is the daughter of long-time Albany UU members Emily and Jay Gallagher.

Music provided by special guest Tanya Hotalen; and Elena Karpoff, Chris Jensen and Randy Rosette

Use this link to join Sunday service:

To dial in by phone: 1-929-436-2866:
Meeting ID: 299 018 7785
Password: 0000

No Religious Education for Children or Youth this Sunday

Albany UU Virtual Services - Live via Zoom
Sunday Service at 10:00 AM
Christmas Eve Candlelight Service - 7:30 PM, rebroadcast at 10:00 PM

Begin your Sunday morning with Rev. Sam guiding an 8:30 Virtual Meditation session until 9:15 (see below under Upcoming Ways to Connect for more info). We then have Virtual Service beginning at 10:00 each Sunday and a chance to stay online for virtual "Coffee Hour" followed by RE for ALL, at 11:30.

Use this link to join Sunday service:

To dial in by phone: 1-929-436-2866:
Meeting ID: 299 018 7785
Password: 0000
Sunday Service Information

Sunday services will be online via Zoom at 10:00 AM EST. There will be no service, religious education or other activities in the church building until further notice. Not familiar with Zoom? Our minister, Rev. Sam Trumbore will give you a brief tutorial.

Use this link to join the Sunday service:

To dial in by phone: 1-929-436-2866:
Meeting ID: 299 018 7785
Password: 0000

Joys and Concerns for Online Services
We have three ways that you can share your joys and concerns.
  • One: Use the online form. If you use this form, you can indicate if you would like to have your joys and concerns shared at the Sunday service, and you can leave contact info if you would like a Pastoral Care Associate to follow up with you.
  • Two: Email your joy or sorrow to before Sunday morning to have them read aloud during the service
  • Three: We will be giving you instructions during the Sunday service about how to share your joys and concerns then.

Adult RE for ALL, Sunday Offering and other Information

For more information about Sunday service, Zoom, Adult RE for ALL, Sunday Offering, and other important Sunday morning details, check out our Sunday at a Glance page here.

You're Invited to Albany UU's
Holiday Events!

Christmas Eve Service
THURSDAY (tonight), Dec 24
7:30 pm, repeat broadcast at 10:00 pm
Join us to hear your favorite Christmas carols, enjoy some heartwarming stories, light candles and sing Silent Night together. (Use the service link or the one below)

Use this link to join:

To dial in by phone: 1-929-436-2866:
Meeting ID: 299 018 7785
Password: 0000

Zoom Christmas Day Open House 2:00 – 4:00
If you’re in the mood and would enjoy a little company, , come to our Christmas Day Open House!

Rev Sam and Leah will be hosting. You can pop by to say hello, or you can stay for a spell. Open to everyone from Albany UU. Even if you’re in a “Bah, humbug!” mood, you’re welcome to come. So, bring your own snacks, tea, eggnog or whatever you enjoy and join us and whoever else might come for some community and fellowship. 

Use this link to join:

By phone: 929-436-2866
Meeting ID: 299 018 7785
Password: 0000

Start your Sunday Morning with Meditation - 8:30 - 9:15 AM
Sunday morning meditation, led by Rev. Sam, begins with a ten-minute talk by Sharon Salzberg or Joseph Goldstein from their course on Insight Meditation. We will sit together for twenty minutes then have some conversation about the talk, meditation methods or experiences followed by a live loving kindness meditation. 

Use this link to join:

By phone: 1-929-436-2866
Meeting ID: 299 018 7785
Password: 0000

Adult RE 11:30 AM on Sundays
Conversational Response: This is your opportunity to reflect with the Sunday service presenter, this Sunday will be Janice, Gallagher, on what the service has elicited from you and listen to the responses of others. Learn more here.

Use this link to join all 11:30 AM adult RE offerings (we use breakout rooms):
Meeting ID: 518-366-4532
Password: 4051842

Free Concerts with Alyssa Yeager to Connect and Refresh
Featuring originals and your favorite 50s-60s folk rock. Mondays at 10:45 AM on and 
All are welcome, you WON'T be on camera, and engaging in the chat is encouraged.

Multigenerational Game Night
Monday, Dec 28, 6:30 PM
Join us for some time together for fun and games on Zoom. We’ll start with some “getting to know you” activities and then have two or three breakout rooms with different games. Email Mike Myers at with questions and to let him know by Dec 27 if you’re coming. Learn more here.

Use this link to join:
Philosophy Group
At 10:15 AM every Tuesday, the Albany UU Philosophy Group will meet via zoom and discuss their topic of the day: Can we get ourselves severed from our addiction to the fossil fuel that has us essentially attached to them like a ball and chain?
All are welcome.

Use this link to join:

By phone: 1-929-436-2866 
Meeting ID: 987 7102 4708
Password: 0000

Ps and Qs
Projects and Quilts (Ps and Qs) will zoom next on Wednesday, Dec 30 at 10:00 AM.

Use this link to join:

By phone: 929-436-2866
Meeting ID: 299 018 7785
Password: 0000

New Year’s Day Labyrinth Walk
Friday, Jan 1, 2020 - 10:00 AM
Join your Albany UU friends and families to start 2021 with movement and meditation in the fresh air. We’ll create a simple labyrinth in Lincoln Park using natural materials. Bring sticks or small branches, pebbles, vines, and perhaps a bough from your tree. Everyone is welcome! (Eagle St entrance to Lincoln Park; park by the pool house; use the steps or ramp across from the pool house entrance to enter the Park “Bowl” and find the labyrinth.) Masks required. Learn more here.

Albany UU Sings
Join your friends and sing your heart out in Virtual Community! We will supply the music and the lyrics.
Save these Wednesday dates at 7:00 PM for the rest of the the service year:
January 6, 20; February 3, 17; March 3, 24; April 7, 21; May 12, 26; June 9
Hope to see you there.

Use this link to join:

By phone: 1-929-436-2866
Meeting ID: 979 5961 1765
Passcode: 0000

Walker Book Group
Join the Walker Book Group for a Zoom discussion on Sunday, Jan 10, 6:30 pm. We will discuss The System: Who Rigged It, How We Fix ItLearn more here

Use this link to join:
To dial in by phone: 1-929-436-2866:
Meeting ID: 299 018 7785
Password: 0000

What is Guest at Your Table?
Guest at Your Table (GAYT) is Unitarian Universalist Service Committee’s annual intergenerational program to raise support for and awareness about key human rights issues. Since UUSC works in more than 20 countries, with over 60 grassroots partners, there are thousands of individuals involved in and who benefit from the work that our members make possible. The program is an opportunity to celebrate grassroots partnership, support human rights, and learn about just four of these individuals – the “guests” in Guest at Your Table.

We learn about these guests through written descriptions called “Stories of Hope”. This year the UUSC has created a video about each leader as well as a written description. You can download the videos and descriptions here.

How can I send in my donation?
You can download this template to make your own Guest at Your Table box to put on your meal table at home. Many families and households like to include a time before dinner to remember their guests. Often children and household members put coins in the box. This year we’ll ask you to count up the money you collect and send it directly to the UUSC. Please send in your donation by January 25th.

There are two ways to send your donation to the UUSC this year.

1.   This year the UUSC has set up a donation page for us. The donation page is a bit like a GoFundMe in that we can can see the donation totals in real time. Be sure to click the “Make donation anonymous” button under your name if you want your name and amount to be anonymous. Find our unique donation page on our website here.

2.   If you prefer, you can mail in a check to UUSC, PO Box 808, Newark, NJ 07101-0808. Make it out to UUSC and write “First UU Society of Albany GAYT” in the memo line. That way your donation by check will be tallied in our overall total.

How can I learn more?

You can check out the Guest at Your Table page at the UUSC website.

Guest at Your Table will be the focus of Brunch Church on Dec 6th at 11:30. All are welcome. Contact Leah Purcell at for the link to join or if you have questions.


Our Inclusivity Team is offering resources for our ongoing education and reflection to address white supremacy culture at Albany UU. Are you finding that you have some time for reading and watching videos these days? Consider settling in with these titles by authors of color to help you become familiar with a diversity of human experiences.

For adults and youth (with guidance, as needed):
All We Can Save: Truth, courage, and solutions for the climate crisis. (2020). Edited by Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Katharine K. Wilkinson. This collection of essays, poetry, and art is an eclectic gathering of history, biology, chemistry, politics, and inspiration. Featuring Black, Indigenous, Latinx, and queer voices, this book sets a new standard for realistic discussions on global warming. Available in hard copy in the Upper Hudson Library System, and available for purchase in downloadable audio format from Audible.

Important Staff Changes!
It is with bittersweet sadness we announce that our Administrative Assistant, Sapphire Correa, will be leaving Albany UU. We are very sad to see her go as she has been a wonderful addition to the church office staff for over two years and willing to take on many different roles during this pandemic, providing needed support to our virtual production team, and helping us all keep connected during this trying time.

We are also very excited for Sapphire as she continues her Master's work in Public Health. Sapphire will be beginning an internship here in Albany, working for the NYS Council on Children and Families developing an app for mothers of young children to connect with a multitude of services in the area that they may not otherwise know are available. She will also be working to improve the web presence of these services as part of their public awareness program. Exciting and important work! This internship will continue through the spring of 2021, when she hopes to participate in an international internship in her field for the summer. Congratulations, Sapphire!

We would normally have a party for Sapphire during Coffee Hour in Channing Hall after service with cake and fellowship. We can't do that, of course, but we would still like to celebrate Sapphire and thank her for her service to Albany UU. If you would like to participate in wishing Sapphire well and giving her a proper Albany UU send-off, please send cards and donations to Tammy Hathaway at the church - 405 Washington Ave, Albany, NY 12206 - by Friday, Jan 8. Make checks out to Albany UU with "Sapphire" on the memo line. Tammy will collect all cards and compile donations to present our gratitude to Sapphire in a safe way. Hopefully we can do this after a virtual service in early January 2021, so we can enjoy seeing her again before she takes on the world. Sapphire's last day with us will be Friday, Jan 15.

Thank you, Sapphire, and thank you to all for your help in recognizing her service to Albany UU!

For those who may be curious, we will be shuffling things around a bit and adding hours to other part-time staff to continue our important work, keeping us all connected, even though we cannot be together physically at this time. Once we know when we will be able to open our building, we will announce the need to hire an Administrative Assistant at 20 hours/week with a primary focus on rental coordination.

Albany UU Staff and this Holiday Season
Tammy Hathaway, Church Administrator, will be off from Saturday, Dec 19 - Sunday, Dec 27
Sapphire Correa, Administrative Assistant, will be off from Wednesday, Dec 23 - Friday, Dec 25
Leah Purcell, Director or Religious Education and Family Ministry will be off from Monday, Dec 21 - Tuesday, Jan 5
Elizabeth Baldes, Religious Education Coordinator will be off from Monday, Dec 21 - Sunday, Dec 27

Plan Ahead for Virtual GA
General Assembly is the annual gathering of Unitarian Universalists. In 2021, GA will again be all-virtual, held June 23-27.  Consider participating in this inspiring, educational, challenging and joyful gathering! Mark your calendar now and check for more information.

“Circle 'Round for Justice, Healing, Courage” is the theme for GA 2021. Interested individuals are invited to submit a Program Proposal. Proposals are due in two phases. Phase 1: Due January 15. Phase 2: Due January 29.
You can register for GA and also find out how to volunteer on the UUA website.

The Albany UU Social Responsibilities Council (SRC) and Inclusivity Team recommend a Black Lives Matter vigil in Troy:
When: Saturday, 12/26/20, 10:30-11:00 am
Where: Troy, corner of River Street at the intersection of Fulton and Third Streets
  • physical distance, masks
  • signs only, no chanting (except for meditative religious practice)
  • all weather

The purpose is two-fold:
  1. to express that Black Lives Matter
  2. to embolden white people to act against racism

To ensure safety as much as we can, we are working under these agreements as a provisionary covenant:
  • We carry signs with the same message: "Black Lives Matter," or "Stand Against Racism."
  • We limit our positive responses to a thumbs-up or a wave.
  • We do not respond to any negative reactions, such as heckling.
  • The police officers at the farmers market (across the street) will be notified that there is a gathering.
  • One person, not holding a sign, will be designated to take photos of license plates of anyone who is inappropriate.
  • We all leave at the end of the vigil, and people leave together.
  • If friends join us, we advise them of the measures above.

If you can’t or don’t want to join standing, you are invited to drive by and wave or honk encouragement.

-Leah Purcell, Director of Religious Education and Family Ministry (DREFM),

-Elizabeth Baldes, Religious Education Coordinator,

No Sunday School this Week
Enjoy your holiday!

Who We Are Supporting through the Guest at Your Table Program?
This is the annual giving program from the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee to provide direct aid to activists and leaders meeting the needs of people in their own communities. Here is more info about the 4 leaders the UUSC is supporting this year.

There are two ways to send your donation to the UUSC this year.
  1. This year the UUSC has set up a donation page for us. Find it on our website here. The donation page is a bit like a GoFundMe in that we can see the donation totals in real time. Be sure to click the “Make donation anonymous” button under your name if you want your name and amount to be anonymous. 
  2. If you prefer, you can mail in a check to UUSC, PO Box 808, Newark, NJ 07101-0808. Make it out to UUSC and write “First UU Society of Albany GAYT” in the memo line. That way your donation by check will be tallied in our overall total.

The deadline to submit donations to First UU Society of Albany's Guest at Your Table program this year is January 25, 2021

Families, Please Join The Treehouse; it’s our own multigenerational community
Celebrating the theme for December of Stillness, you’ll find a video about how to meditate as well as a link to our Soulful Home packet on the theme of Stillness, and posts about local events, movies, and books. Everyone - parents/caretakers, children and youth can share their written thoughts, pictures, videos they make. And this is where the guides keep resources for the Crossing Paths group; the 8th Grade Book Club and Coming of Age. Click here to join

Parents/caretakers can find resources in the RE Roundup this week.
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. 

Join us in keeping our members and friends in your thoughts as they share their joys and concerns.

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, Phil Rich, Randy Rosette, Sandy Stone, Dee VanRiper and Erik 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 provides 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 “check in’s” from Caring Network members. Please reach out to the Caring Network.

Essential Building Use Guidelines:
Find more information about our Building Use Guidelines during COVID HERE.

Learn about submitting announcements to for our virtual Sunday service and how to reserve a Zoom room for meetings and events here.

Other important resources, guidelines and information can be found on the Resource Page of our website, here.

Virtual Service Ushers - It's never too late to volunteer!
This is a great opportunity to volunteer on a Sunday morning! Ushers are needed on Sunday mornings to help provide a welcoming, safe and enjoyable virtual experience. We need folks who would be willing to volunteer to help. Tammy will provide a quick and simple training. PLEASE contact her if you'd like to learn more:

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:

Publication deadlines
This is an important reminder that the news and article deadline for Windows Weekly is 9:00 AM on Monday. Thank you for your cooperation.

Sign up for an online class

- Send an email to:
Regular events and meetings

Most of these events and meetings continue online, however dates and times may vary. Please contact the Team or Group Leader or email if you have questions.

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)

10:15 AM      Philosophy Discussion (weekly)

10:00 AM     Ps and Qs (alternating)
7:00 PM     Albany UU Sings (alternating)

6:30 PM       Board of Trustees (4th)
Going to miss a Sunday?

Online service is generally recorded

Sunday, Dec 20 watch it here.

Sunday, Dec 13 watch it here.

Sunday, Dec 6 watch it here.

Sunday, Nov 29 watch it here.

Sunday, Nov 22 watch it here.

Sunday, Nov 15 watch it here.

Sunday, Nov 8 watch it here.

For previous services, pre-pandemic:
You can listen to the entire Albany UU Sunday service at home or on your mobile device. March 1 and 8 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 - when the building reopens: 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:
The Albany UU Office is closed during this time of physical distancing. Sam, Leah, Tammy and Sapphire have their messages forwarded to their personal cell phones and are available by email.


Zoom use
To reserve Zoom for an Albany UU online meeting, contact Administrative Assistant Sapphire Correa (518.463.7135 or

Photo credit: Jeannie Thompson
First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany | 518.463.7135| 518.463.1429 | |