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A note from Guy...
Good afternoon, friends -
It was my intention to make this a briefest-possible Flash. Naive of me, as it turned out, as there were multiple requests for the inclusion of announcements and calls to action. Not to mention the fact that we have just inaugurated a new president and vice-president as a global pandemic continues and the challenges we face individually and together seem to grow rather than lessen. This Flash is also a bit later than usual, for reasons not worth trying to explain; please forgive. Suffice to say that a the end of one calendar year and the start of a new one bring many, many tasks for this office and for the Congregation: we are busy! (Which is also why if you call the office needing support for your Committee's project, or information, or help with updating your online participation, or a Zoom link, or someone's contact info, or any other tasks - you might not be, well, first in line. Please be patient!)
In this Flash:
- Links for Friday's Vespers Service, and Sunday's Service.
- Multiple challenges: Calls for volunteers in anticipation of our building being reopened some time in the coming year so that we can gather again in person, and calls to action.
- The Ministerial Search Team Report, and well-worth-repeating descriptions of upcoming classes, workshops, and other opportunities for growth, learning, and fellowship in this time of so much isolation.
- And, in the End Note: two brief fragments from Amanda Gorman's stunning poem "The Hill We Climb," read beautifully by Ms. Gorman at yesterday's Inauguration ceremonies. I've included a photo of Ms. Gorman as a clickable link to video of the poem read live yesterday, so yes: click on it.
_____________________________________For Sunday's Service the Zoom link is here.
The Service is at 10:30 AM but you can begin
signing in at 10:00 AM to visit.
This Sunday's will be a lay-led Service coordinated by Misty Sheehan. After the inauguration of Joe Biden as president of the United States, after all the politicizing that held our attention, we can now go forth - but where? and in what direction? Five members of our community will speak on what they feel is most important for us to start working on.
Again, the Zoom link for SUNDAY SERVICE is
Vespers for Peace
Join us on Friday evenings for a calming time of
music, contemplation, poetry, and inspiration.
This Friday, January 22, 2021 at 8:00 PM
Begin signing in at 7:30 to visit
MINISTERIAL SEARCH TEAM REPORT
Inauguration Day was the culmination of efforts by many people working toward the common goal of restoring hope and
creating unity in our tragically divided country. Even as the beauty of the day unfolded, your MST continued working toward its goal of bringing a settled minister to UUCGT. We continued speaking with, and listening carefully to, ministers who express interest in joining us on our journey.
Although our job is daunting, we proceed with optimism based on what we are learning. We trust the process and are heartened by the positive responses we are privileged to receive on behalf of the whole UUCGT family.
As our country resets to the default of caring for one another and the planet, it is clear that the work is just beginning. Such is the truth of UUCGT. The best is yet to come!
Mary, Geoff, Charles, Dusty, Jim, Chris, Jan
RE-OPENING TASK FORCE: CALL for VOLUNTEERS
In anticipation of re-opening our sacred space sometime this year, your Board of Trustees is calling for volunteers to create a "Re-Opening Task Force," filled by you, our Congregants. The Task Force will be asked to research all Local, State and Federal guidelines and requirements, along with gathering recommendations from the UUA. All meetings will be electronic - no in-person meetings are necessary. We will make this decision based on science-backed data and will abide by all regulations related to COVID-19. We will gather information from all sources and make a recommendation to the Board about the timing of the re-opening.
Of course, we all hope this is sooner, rather than later, but will abide by the science and orders of our authorities. If you are interested in serving on this Task Force, please contact Board of Trustees member Judy Myers at email@example.com by February 15, 2021.
We appreciate any input and hope you will consider this important responsibility.
UPCOMING ADULT RE OPPORTUNITIES
Co-facilitated by Alison Ernst and Rev. Cathy Harrington
WHAT: Reading and Writing Whiteness, using the text White Fragility by
WHO: You and your non-UU friends - please invite others to participate
WHEN: Thursdays 6:30 - 8 p.m, 6-week session, February 4 through March 11
WHAT: How to be an Anti Racists by Ibram Kendi
WHO: Anyone who has taken previous antiracism workshops
WHEN: Tuesdays 6:30 - 8 p.m., 6-week session, February 2 through March 9
WHO: Anyone interested in exploring aspects of unitarian faith
WHEN: One a month, based on participant group's availability
You can access
the calendar online
Thu Jan 21 (Yup. Tonight!)
7:00 PM VE Rehearsal with Renée Russell. Zoom link here. Passcode 486391
Fri Jan 22
1:00 PM Rehearsal for Sunday's Service
Vespers. Begin signing in at 7:30. Zoom link here
Sun Jan 24 10:00 AM
Sunday Service. Sign in starting at 10:00. Zoom link is here
Mon Jan 25
Tue Jan 26
1:30 PM Sunday Svcs Comm/Coords
Rev. Cathy Virtual Office hours (until 1:30), Zoom link here
4:00 PM Healthy Congregations Team
Thu Jan 21
1:30 PM Peacemakers Needleworkers
By that time you'll have your next Flash!
UUCGT Bulletin Board
A CALL TO ACTION
Several members of our Congregation called attention to a disturbing event during yesterday evening's meeting of the Grand Traverse County Board of Commissioners. Vice-chair Ron Clous flashed a semi automatic weapon in response to two women asking questions. You can read details of what happened in the Traverse City "Ticker" or in today's Record-Eagle.
More than one member of our Congregation said that "This is not a time to be silent." Please consider taking action:
Please call or e-mail Grand Traverse Prosecutor Noelle Moeggenberg, and do two things:
1) Offer support and gratitude for her speaking up against the resolution the Grand Traverse Board of Commissioners passed not to use county resources to enforce Michigan DHHS Covid-related orders, and/or to make enforcement of these orders the "lowest priority."
2) Let her know she has support for, and that you would like to see, an investigation into Commissioner Ron Clous brandishing a weapon during a public meeting yesterday.
People including the speakers felt threatened by Clous, and others agreed that his "gesture" was, at the very least, utterly inappropriate to a public meeting.
Noelle's contact information is as follows:
--Keli MacIntosh begins speaking at 1:28:40
--Clous brandishes his rifle beginning at 1:31:38
--Hetschel finds his fellow commissioner brandishing a weapon to be amusing at 1:31:43
GROWING YOURSELF UP
Joining a small group can have many benefits beyond the subject anchoring the group. One of the most important to us is finding and building a safe and trusting community. Being together for learning can add to our daily lives - spiritually, socially, and intellectually. We can learn and practice careful listening skills to better enhance our Healthy Congregation principles. All these and more can be part of belonging to a small group.
Sylvia Walworth and Susan Lio and I are offering a study of the book Growing Yourself Up by Jennifer Brown. The books are available for perusal with just a call to me. The group will first meet on Tuesday, February 16th at 7 p.m. We will then choose a time and day that works for everyone.
Please consider joining us for this guided study of ourselves in the world today. Call or e-mail me for more information or to sign up.
MEN'S GROUP and THE STATE & BIJOU THEATRES
We all want to see the State Theatre and other local institutions
looking like this again. We might even want to be there!
Well, Mark Gustafson and the Men's Group have this to say about that:
In this time of pain and stress, I was thinking about what Jimmy Carter said 1979. He implied that there was a "malaise" affecting America, a crisis in confidence. And Jimmy didn't know about our present political climate. Well, I feel that crisis now. So what do we do? For one thing we could help the State and Bijou Theatres come back to life. These movie theatres are the heart and soul of downtown Traverse City. They show movies that make us laugh and cry and think. They give us joy! How can we help? We can give money! Our UU Men's group is having a fundraiser starting now and through January to help our theatres survive.
If you would like to participate, please
make your checks out to TCFF
and send them to:
1111 Lake Ridge Drive # 201
Traverse City, Mi. 49684.
The Wednesday dinner group has tried to stay connected these past months, socially distanced picnicking in the UU parking lot when we could, on ZOOM when it was rainy. We are going to weekly ZOOM now, 5:30 every Wednesday. If you would like to join us, contact Mike and Sandra McDonald
for the ZOOM invite. You may bring your glass of wine.
"We've learned that quiet isn't
And the norms and notions
of what just is
Isn't always just-ice . . .
"When day comes we step out of
aflame and unafraid
The new dawn blooms as we free it
For there is always light,
If only we're brave enough to see it
If only we're brave enough to be it"
from "The Hill We Climb," by
Amanda Gorman, Youth Poet Laureate,
read at the Inauguration of
Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr.,
the 46th President of the United States of America,
Kamala Devi Harris,
first woman Vice-president
and first Vice-president of color
of these United States,
on Wednesday, 20 January, 2021