The SOUNDINGS team is taking a break for the holidays. We will send out one issue that covers the two weeks between Saturday, December 24 Christmas Eve and through to Friday, January 6th. The next issue will come out January 6th, SOUNDINGS WEEKEND to cover January 7-8.
Please get any articles in to cover those two weeks by next Wednesday, December 21 at 5:30 PM. And then articles for January 7-8 and 9-13 are due WEDNESDAY January 4 at 5:30 PM. Thank you and Happy Holidays to all!
'Tis the Season for
Zuum Truupe's A Christmas Carol!
ANNUAL HOLIDAY APPEAL IS UNDERWAY; PLEASE GIVE AS YOU CAN
We invite all who are able to give a little extra this December - beyond their pledges - to the Annual Holiday Appeal.
Please send your gift by check or VENMO ("The Unitarian Church in Westport") or by clicking vop.tucw.org. Be sure to put "holiday appeal" in the memo line. Many thanks, in advance, for your care and generosity. Contact Rev. John.
STORYTELLING: FRIDAY DEC 30, 6:30 PM AT THE MEETING HOUSE
A Gift on a Winter's Night!
Following traditions of times past, you are invited to a gathering at the Meeting House on Friday, December 30 from 6:30-8:00 PM. This gathering as adults will enjoy the reflections of three of our seniors. In the presence of a warm fireplace will be our own international indigenous storyteller Grandmother Nancy Andry. She will be joined by our own Connie Rockman, a UU storyteller and spinner of tales from our past. Jim Francek our community minister will also be sharing some of his home spun poetry.
Space is limited. The first forty people who text Jim at 719-534-3338 will get a seat. Seats will go fast so text early. Hot chocolate and cider will be provided. Feel free to bring leftover Holiday sweets to pass on with good cheer!
BOARD MEETS TUES DEC 20 AT 7:00 PM AT THE MEETING HOUSE
The Board will be meeting this Tuesday at 7:00 PM in the Meeting House. A draft of the minutes from the November meeting can be found HERE.
All the ends for this year can be found on our website, HERE.
Board meetings are open except for executive session; please contact our Secretary, Stapley Emberling, if you would like to attend.
LET'S HELP HELPING HANDS WIN $1K FROM FAIRFIELD COUNTY BANK
Each month Fairfield County Bank provides $1,000 to a local charity. Helping Hands has been nominated for December. All we need to do is "vote" for Helping Hands and we could get $1K for this great program! It's just one click away, each day!
Members of our community have been preparing Brown Bag Lunches for April Barron’s aptly named organization, Helping Hands, since COVID began—now over 28,000 lunches. This is just one of many ways that April helps her Bridgeport community
April in action
You can vote once a day, every day of the month to win the grant. Here's how:
Done... for today. Please vote as many days (once per day) as you can. Let’s help Helping Hands!
BEARDSLEY 6th GRADERS LEARN ABOUT REFUGEE CRISIS IN KENYA
Omar and his brother were on ZOOM from Kenya and shared about refugee life.
The author and illustrator collaborated on this powerful book.
Victoria Jamieson, the illustrator, talked to the 6th graders about her work.
Through a grant from CT Humanities, Westport author and good friend to the Beardsley Committee and School Michaela MacColl, a member of the non-profit UNA-USA Southwestern CT, organized an event on December 6 which offered Beardsley sixth graders an opportunity to learn about the world's refugee crisis. Each student was provided with a copy of the award-winning graphic novel When Stars are Scattered, the story of Omar Mohamed and his non-verbal brother, who spent 15 years in the Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya before coming to the US. Omar, the author, ZOOMed in from Kenya to talk with the students about his experiences. Victoria Jamieson, the illustrator, spoke to the students in-person about the lengthy process involved in drawing and re-drawing the thousands of panels of a graphic novel.
VOICES CAFE AIDS MERCY LEARNING CENTER'S FOOD PANTRY
Here's what Mercy Learning Center's Ann McCarthy shared with us about VOICES CAFE donations -- nearly 175 pounds of food, and and over $1100 in financial support - given to MLC's food pantry as a result of the VOICES concert on December 3:
"On behalf of the team at Mercy Learning Center, thank you so much for these donations and for your support of our mission. This time of year is especially challenging for many of our families and your efforts to stock our food pantry will make the holiday season so much easier for them."
JOHN STREET BRIDGE HOLIDAY OUTREACH
Marisol Lorraine Dumeng “Mita”
July 14, 1991 - May 28, 2022
Walking Alongside Mita’s Family: Paying respect to Mita by acknowledging Femicide and Domestic Violence.*
We cannot walk in Mita’s shoes. We cannot feel her fear as her ex-boyfriend repeatedly threatened to kill her or her sense of helplessness as the threats continued following his arrest for threatening and harassment. We cannot feel her anger and disbelief as she called the police only hours before he murdered her, to ask, ‘What are you guys waiting for, for him to come, shoot and kill me?’”
But we can walk alongside Mita’s children: Billy (16), Janiyah (13), Jo’Syah (5), and Armani (4).
Their Grandma asked April Barron, our partner with John Street, to help with their Christmas list. Let’s add cards, too! CLICK HERE FOR HOW YOU CAN HELP.
*Click HERE to read the full story about Mita, from the Ct Post.
GREETINGS FROM YOUR NEW GARDENS AND GROUNDS COMMITTEE
At Rev. John's request, we now have a dedicated team of six members who have taken on the task of creating and implementing a master plan for the care of our sanctuary's surrounding landscape. Our intention has been to take a thoughtful and collaborative approach to learning about what is growing on our property before making any decisions. With the help of Greg Steele, our longtime member and a professional arborist, we have been identifying and evaluating the health of our trees and shrubs, and the location of invasive species on a landscape with typical New England challenges-ledge, rock, and wetland. Our decisions will be informed by best practices for maintenance in a changing climate. Please direct comments and questions to Carol Hamilton Advanced Master Gardener-CT and John McWeeney.
UU MOVIE GROUP MEETING FRIDAY, DECEMBER 30 - ZOOM - 7:30 PM
The movies we will watch and then discuss at our meeting this month are: “The Fabelmans”, “Lady Chatterly’s Lover” (Netflix), and “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” (Netflix).
Movie lovers wanted! Please join us if you see any of these. We will meet only on ZOOM this month. For the ZOOM link, please email Dorothy Rich.
The Women’s Circle with Grandmother Nancy: Tuesday, December 20, 7-8:30 PM. (First and third Tuesdays of the month) Talking circle - thought provoking and inspirational conversations. ZOOM HERE Contact Pat Francek
Domestic Violence Crisis Center (DVCC)- 24Hr 888–774–2900
If you are going through a challenging time or know somebody in the congregation who needs support from our Pastoral Care Chaplains, call to leave a confidential message in the PCA voice mailbox 203-227-7205 ext. 19 or email email@example.com.
Our support network is available to provide tangible help for friends in need: meal delivery, pharmacy runs, grocery shopping, a regular phone call of connection. Contact a minister or coordinators Dorothy Rich,or Diane Cano,
For individuals or families of our congregation seeking confidential support or information about addiction issues. Please contact our Addiction Recovery Ministry by calling 203-227-7205 ext. 19 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
The Unitarian Church in Westport is a diverse and welcoming religious community, free of creed and dogma, and open to people of all backgrounds and beliefs.
WE INSPIRE and support individual spiritual growth.
WE CONNECT through worship, music, learning, and caring ministries.