Connections Newsletter
All the news you need to know to connect, grow, and serve.
Join us for Worship this Sunday
cycles of growth and change
Sunday, September 16, 2018
9:15 and 11:15 a.m.
"Cycles of Growth and Change"
Sermon by Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley

You know the saying: Great, another blankety-blank growing experience! Growth can be threatening on a multitude of levels. We have to leave our comfort zones and enter into places of uncertainty, without knowing whether we have the wherewithal to live into something new. Rev. Terasa will talk about what this may mean to us individually, as well as collectively. How do we sustain ourselves in the midst of inevitable change, and find ways to approach growth with purpose. 
Sunday's Worship Associate is David McTaggart. Soloist and Song Leader is Lori Rottenberg. Sophia Morreale, accompanist.

Next Sunday
September 23, 9:15 and 11:15 a.m. “In Service of the Greater Good” – Sermon by Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley.

stacked parking lot photo
Sunday Parking Note
To relieve traffic congestion and to provide spaces for visitors and those with mobility issues, we ask all able-bodied drivers to park in one of our two auxiliary lots (Mason lot on George Mason Drive and Arlington Hall Park on 4th Street - map here). Sunday parking is also available along George Mason Drive and neighborhood side streets behind the church. Drivers can still do drop-offs at the lower level lobby and the end of the ramp. When crossing George Mason on foot, PLEASE cross at the light--SAFETY FIRST.
September 16 STP: Dream Project

Since 2011, the Dream Project, a non-profit organization, has supported promising young immigrant students in their pursuit of higher education. Through mentoring, scholarships, advocacy, and community outreach, the Dream Project empowers students and their families to succeed against all odds. Over the past year, the Dream Project's Mentoring Program helped 40 students navigate the college application process. In addition, this past spring the Dream Project awarded $135,000 in Dream Project scholarships. Thanks to your generous donations, these scholarships and community-building services are made possible. 

Donations are accepted for each week's STP recipient through the following Saturday at midnight. Make online donations here.    
MoonFire Mabon Ritual

Please join MoonFire for a ritual on the Autumn Equinox, also known as Mabon. As we think about the balance of day and night, we’ll also focus on balance in our lives; we’ll contemplate the bounty of what we expect to harvest this fall while remembering the discipline and hard work that brought it to fruition. As always, a potluck and time for fellowship will follow the ritual. For further information on MoonFire, please visit, or contact

Date: Sunday, September 16, 1:30 p.m.
Location: Chapel
Jazz Vespers
With Free Spirits Jazz Ensemble

Music Meditations
Creative Experiences
Audience Participation

Date: Sunday, September 23, p.m.
Location: Sanctuary
Transmissions Equinox Meditation with Labyrinth Walk

Come for this special evening of contemplative meditation with music and soundscapes provided by Woven Green. In honor of the Autumn Equinox, the Labyrinth will be open for walking meditation. Optional: Bring a yoga mat, pillow, blanket, hand drum or rattle. $20 suggested donation.

Date: Tuesday, September 25, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Center Gallery
Monday Night Buddhist Meditation: Mindful of Race
Author and teacher at the Insight Insight Meditation Community of Washington, Ruth King, will be the special guest speaker at Jonathan Foust's Mindfulness Meditation class on Monday, September 17, at 7:30 p.m. Ruth will lead us in meditation and give a Dharma talk from her latest book, Mindful of Race - Transforming Racism from the Inside Out. No registration or fee. Donations welcome. A book-signing will be held after the talk. More information here.

Time: Monday, September 17, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Sanctuary
Church Matters
UUCA Board of Trustees Meeting 

Tuesday, September 18, 2018
7:00 p.m. Open Comment Period
7:30 p.m. Board Meeting

At 7:00 p.m. Board Members will be available to listen to comments from the congregation in the Welcome Room. At 7:30 p.m. the regular Board Meeting will begin. Congregants are welcome to observe regular board meetings. At the September meeting the Board will hear a report on the bi-annual financial audit from outside auditors; have a discussion with the Treasurer on the quarterly financial report; and approve the final charge and membership for the Board’s Governance Task Force. Additional items may also be added as needed.
Kelly Kohl Selected Chairperson of Ministerial Search Committee
Left to right: Bee Moradi, Allen Keiswetter, Sarah Yue, Kelly Kohl, Sally Dieterman,
Betsy Rosenblatt Rosso, and Frank Corsoro

The newly elected Senior Minister Search Committee (MSC) completed an intensive, and productive, retreat over the past weekend. Friday's three-hour opening session was convened by the Search Committee's UUA appointed facilitator and advisor, Rev. Kate Walker. Rev. Walker, the lead minister of the nearby Mt. Vernon Unitarian church, is an experienced MSC minister and counselor who is familiar with the Northern Virginia cluster of UU churches.

The MSC first developed the covenant that will guide their work, and discussed the multitude of skills each member brought to the team and the roles each would need to assume to make the MSC the most successful possible. Saturday's six hour retreat continued with the assignment of roles, initiated talks about expected timeline, how to reach out to the congregation, and culminated with the unanimous selection of Kelly Kohl as the Ministerial Search Committee Chairperson.
Kelly reacted to the team's trust in electing her the chair with a message to the congregation:

"Hello UUCA! Last weekend, the Ministerial Search Committee conducted our retreat and kicked-off the ministerial search process. It was a tremendously productive exercise filled with love, reflection, and planning. During the retreat, I was honored to have my fellow committee members select me as the UUCA MSC Chair. I hope to use my previous experience leading UUCA Young Adult events and my professional skills as a management consultant and government program manager as I move into my new role. I am very excited for the opportunity to work more closely with the congregation over the next year as we build our UUCA story and discuss our goals for UUCA’s future! Over the coming months the MSC will reach out to each and every member of the church, and hear from all groups in the church."

The Ministerial Search Committe has established a dedicated email address ( that can be used by any member or friend of the congregation to submit questions or comments. The MSC will conduct monthly meetings now through the culmination of the search process--a process that will lead UUCA into an exciting future with a new lead minister in May 2020!
Ministry Matters
In the Meantime
With Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley, Interim Senior Minister

When I was a child growing up in the Gulf Coast of Texas I lived through three large hurricanes that brought significant flooding to my community. Waking up with two feet of water on the floor is an experience I don’t care to have again. My family was among the lucky ones who didn't have to do significant rebuilding, but I know firsthand what it is like to watch powerlessly as nature reminds us in the most visceral way possible, that we are not in control. As I watch the progress of Hurricane Florence I think again about those days, but even more about the devastation of so many storms of late. 

The poet rupi kaur wrote: “your body / is a museum / of natural disasters / can you grasp how / stunning that is.” We are forged out of disaster in so many ways, yet we often believe we can avoid that truth. There is no control. There is no averting. There is no outrunning the power of nature. We can only respond. And that response is everything. It requires the deepest kind of courage we can summon.

I turn to poetry in times like this, as it speaks between the lines of reality. In The Book of the Dead, Muriel Rukeyser offers this: “What three things can never be done? / Forget. Keep silent. Stand alone.” We can, of course, do these things. But our souls get torn apart when we do. I think of the difference between the response to Katrina when humanity seemed abandoned, and the way in which Houstonians and strangers alike came together to help their fellow humans after Harvey.

The only thing we can control in the face of nature is how we show up. This kind of courage usually doesn’t take thinking about. It’s simply what we do. And every small and large spontaneously brave action tells us something precious about what humanity is capable of. It is that knowledge that helps us get up to face another day, no matter what it brings. 
Lifespan Religious Education
Religious Education Class Begin Sunday
This Sunday marks the beginning of our 2018-2019 Religious Education classes.  And, we have a special schedule for this coming Sunday to celebrate the launch of a new year. This Sunday, parents of kids Preschool—7th grade will join their kids/youth in class for the entire session. This will be a time of meeting the teachers, learning about the curriculum, creating a class covenant, and playing games. After class, there will be an RE social time in the Activity Room.  Note—this Sunday only parents will NOT begin in the Sanctuary. Kids and parents will report directly to RE classes at 9:15/11:15. Please check the RE News for RE room assignments. There will be signs posted Sunday as well. 

Parents with youth 8th grade and older will report to the Sanctuary as usual. Nursery care will be available for two years and younger.
Thank you for your support!
UUCA Rocks! Thank you for your support!
A huge thank you goes to everyone who supported last week's pancake breakfast fundraiser put on by our fabulous Youth! Thanks to your generous donations, over $1,000 was raised for the Youth 2019 spring service trip to the Hopi Nation in Arizona.
NEW! UUCA Children & Youth Choirs
A new church year means new opportunities for our children and youth to make music together and to share their song with our congregation. We have new and exciting programming for K thru 12th grades. See information under Music Ministry below or click here.
Adult Education @ UUCA
Registration for the UUCA Adult RE program is now open. Workshops and classes this include:
  • Conflict Transformation
  • Adult OWL (Our Whole Lives sexuality program)
  • Legacy Giving
  • Writings of Martin Luther King, Jr. 
  • Gardening for Pollinators
  • Coping with Pet Loss
  • Geography of Grace
  • And more to be added . . .

Classes begin in October. For more information visit the registration page here.
Conflict Transformation Workshop - Rev. Cooley, Oct. 20, 1-4pm
Adult Education 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
Faith in Action
ESOL Writing Coaches Needed
The UUCA ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) program is reviving its writer coaching program to help students improve their writing. Typically, these students are adults who have a good mastery of English but wish to improve their resumes, pass the TOEFL writing tests, or just improve their vocational or avocational written work. Coaching can be done face-to-face or remotely via email or other online communication. If you have a love for the written word and can explain basic English rules of grammar and guidelines for composition, we invite you to join our coaching team. For more information please contact Ric Blacksten,, 703-980-5899.
Meet the Artist September 15
Paintings by Morgan Norwood in Center Gallery
This is your last chance to take in the beautiful ethereal images of Arlington artist Morgan Norwood on display in the Center Gallery. The show closes soon. You are invited to an artist reception on September 15 when Norwood will discuss her background in science and how it influences her visual appreciation of the relationships between the natural world and human physiology and how it plays out in her art. Artist statement here.
Time: Saturday, September 15, 5-7 p.m.
Location: Center Gallery
Call To Action: VOICE-wide Assembly with Virginia Governor Ralph Northam
Then senior minister , Rev. Michael McGee led 200 people from UUCA to attend VOICE's (Virginia Organized for Community Engagement) founding action 10 years ago. We will turn out in such numbers again this October to impress upon Governor Northam that we want our government to serve...

We The People.

RSVP to David McTaggart at telling him that you will be there and that you will bring what numbers of your family and friends! See flyer for details.

Date: Sunday, October 21, 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. (Buses and carpools leave UUCA at 3:00)
Location: Fairfax High School, 3501 Rebel Run, Fairfax
African American Book Sharing Circle Sept. 21: Barracoon
UUCA's African American Book Sharing Circle will discuss Barracoon, by Zora Neale Hurston, on September 21. While this is a newly published book, the reality is that this story has spent more than 60 years in Howard University’s library where only scholars had access to it. The book is based on a series of conversations Hurston had with Cudjo Lewis, a slave who was brought to this country aboard the last slave ship. Lewis’s account of his journey to America makes the book unique since most slave narratives focus on life in this country, not the journey to America. Hurston's attempt to publish in the 1930s was rejected due to her refusal to change the language from the common dialect to more standard English. All are welcome to participate. For more details, click here, or contact Linda Lutes Corsoro at or Pat Findikoglu at for details.

Date: Friday, September 21, 7:30 p.m.
Location: UUCA - Room TBA
Better Angels Skills Workshop: How to Talk Across the Political Divide
There's a lot of stress these days among family members and friends who are divided politically, and the run-up to the November midterm elections can make these relationships even more challenging. Please join fellow UUCA-ers for a Better Angels Skills Workshop to learn strategies for having respectful conversations that clarify motivations, search for common ground, and affirm the importance of the relationship even while acknowledging differences. Questions? Contact Sarah Yue, Registration here.

Date: Saturday, September 29, 2-4:30 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
Registration for Live the Pledge to End Racism Workshop
Whether you have had previous anti-racism training, or have never taken a workshop about racism, this two-day workshop will challenge you to deepen your commitment to work toward dismantling white supremacy. Participants explore the history of racism, the concept of implicit bias, the effects of micro-aggressions, the results of structural and institutional racism, and the contemporary Movement for Black Lives. Methods include readings, personal reflection, small group discussion, role plays, and videos. This workshop is specifically designed for people who participate in a faith community. It is in that context that we deepen our understanding, our relationships, and our connection with the wider community. The workshop is a two-day commitment. Questions? Contact Ann Ulmschneider,

Register here by October 1.

Dates: Saturdays, October 13 AND November 10, 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
8th Principle Information Meeting
The Unitarian Universalist Association ( UUA) is considering the addition of an 8th principle to the 7 principles of the UUA Covenant. UUCA members will vote on whether to adopt the principle at a congregational meeting later this church year. The text of the proposed principle says:

We the member congregations of the Unitarian Universalist Association, covenant to affirm and promote journeying toward spiritual wholeness by building a diverse, multicultural Beloved Community by our actions that accountably dismantle racism and other oppressions in ourselves and our institutions.

To learn more, click here.

Time: Sunday, September 30, following 9:15 & 11:15 services
Location: Center Gallery
Allyship Workshop
As part of UUCA's Live the Pledge campaign to end racism, the church partnered with Service Never Sleeps and offered 12 racial justice Allyship workshops this past year, training over 200 UUCAers. If you missed the previous workshops, here's another chance to become a better ally. 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. It's organized by Kerry Spinks , a UUCA member and co-founder of Arlington Action Group, a neighborhood based group of activists in South Arlington energized around a mantra of "HEAR Arlington: Huddle, Educate, Advocate, Resist!" For more information and to sign up, please click here . Note that this training is offsite. For questions, contact Kerry Spinks , or 703-597-2416. 

Date: Saturday, September 29, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m.
Location: Offsite (address given upon registration)
Music Ministry
With Gene Mulligan & Friends

Come for an afternoon of fine musical performances by pianist Gene Mulligan and friends. Other performers are welcome to bring their instruments and join in this informal and intimate concert in the Chapel. All are welcome. Bring your family and friends.

Date: Saturday, September 15, 2 p.m.
Location: Chapel
Come sing with us!
Now is the perfect time to sign up for one of our many choirs. We have choirs for all ages!

Sanctuary Singers - Adult Choir
Family Pop-Up - All ages
Chalice Singers - K thru 4th
TrUUbadours - 5th thru 8th
Youth Choir & Songwriting - 9th thru 12th
SHINE - Healing Choir

Come ring with us too!
We have three bell choirs, grade 3 thru adults.

Bellissimo - 3rd grade thru adult
Crescendo - Intermediate
Polymnia - Advanced

Music Ministry brochure with details on all choirs here .

Flyer with details specific to Children and Youth choirs here .
Congregational Life
Helping Hands
With a hurricane in the forecast, we wanted to remind you that UUCA offers a Helping Hand when you need assistance. We can provide rides to medical appointments and to church services and activities as well as meals when you’re homebound. For help or to volunteer to offer help, contact Sarah Masters, No access to email because your power is out? Call 703-200-0576. 
Photo Directories
The Member Photo Directories are in! Pick yours up in Fellowship Hall on Sunday. Free for those who were photographed, $5 for others.
10-Part Experiential Retreat Program
The Soul of Aging
What does it mean to be growing older? What image comes to your mind when you think of aging? Most of us tend to think of aging as dealing with health issues and letting go of life. In fact, growing older can and ought to be quite the opposite experience. As we grow older, we begin to look at life differently. We come to learn from our shared experience, to mature in spiritual presence. Indeed, as we age, we are called “to sage,” to grow in maturity and wisdom, to become wise elders radiating spiritual vitality, love and peace. One is never too young to begin Saging! Read further details here. Register with David McTaggart at, 703-835-6944.

The Soul of Aging is a licensed curriculum of Parker J. Palmer’s Center for Courage and Renewal , and is based upon the Center’s “Circle of Trust” approach to small group ministry. Twenty-six UUCAers have already participated in The Soul of Aging program. An additional 25 have experienced the Circles of Trust approach to spiritual awakening in a year-long “Leading From Within” weekend retreat series. 
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.  Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley and Sarah Masters will be leading the class.

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. It will be offered again on Tuesday, November 13, 5:30-9:00 p.m. Questions? Contact Sarah Masters, Director of Congregational Life,

Time: Sunday, September 23, 1:00-4:30 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
UUCA Small Group Ministry
Register for a Covenant Group Today!

Online registration is open and groups are filling up! You can register online here today and for the next few weeks. Do remember that signing up involves a commitment to regular attendance throughout the year. Please note that if none of the available groups meet your needs, we strongly urge you to put your name on the waiting list. We may be adding another group if there is enough interest. 

This year we have a number of non-Soul Matters groups as well as some Soul Matters groups with a special emphasis.  Take a look here to see this great selection.     

Covenant groups allow us to share what touches our hearts and souls with others in a safe setting. In our groups, we explore our spirituality, build relationships, and provide service to UUCA and the wider community. Groups of 8 to 12 people meet monthly from October to June at church or in homes to explore and grow together. A trained facilitator leads each group using written and online resources to enhance communication. Signing up indicates an intention to attend all 9 meetings.

Note: This year all registration will be online. There will be laptops and Covenant Group Strategy Team members available after services on September 16 and 23 for those who need help registering online. 

For questions, email or call Hank Dahlstrom at 703-573-3538.
Flower Ministry Secret: Grocery Store Flowers Transformed
UUCA's Flower Ministry Team is hosting a Hillwood Museum arranger who will conduct a class on how to transform simple grocery store flowers into beautiful arrangements. This is a free class and open to all. Parent/child (at least 10 years old) groups are welcome. Participants must bring their own grocery store or garden flowers and shears. Registration is limited to 12 people and required. For more details and to register, email Jennifer Wright at

Date: Saturday, October 6, 10 a.m. - Noon
Location: Room 13/15

AND, please consider volunteering with the Flower Ministry Team. No experience needed; mentoring is provided. Whether you’d like to prepare arrangements for the Welcome Desk, the Candle Tables, or help with special services or both, let Jennifer Wright know about your interest. We’d love to expand our team. 
Wheel of Life
Condolences to Diane Evans-Gayer and Bob Gayer on the death of Diane’s mother.
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