Connections Newsletter
All the news you need to know to connect, grow, and serve.
Sunday, December 9, 2018 - 9:15 and 11:15 a.m.
"Dare to Believe"
Sermon by Rev. Carlton Elliott Smith
Faith is the substance of the things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

This familiar passage from the New Testament speaks to the uncertainty of our lives. How do we continue when our reserves are depleted? What opens up when we are propelled not by what is guaranteed, safe and predictable, but by what is imagined, risky and unknown? We will reflect today on what it means to go forward in faith, boldly living our deepest values in large and small ways.

Diane Ullius is Worship Associate. The Youth Choir sings an original piece they created under the direction of Maya Rogers, UUCA Artist in Residence. Mimi Bornstein, Director of Music Ministries, on piano, and Leo Sushansky, National Chamber Ensemble, on violin, perform Shubert's Ave Maria.
Rev Carlton photo
Rev. Carlton Elliott Smith was part of the ministerial team at UUCA from 2010 to 2013. He currently serves our UU Association as a member of the Southern Region Congregational Life Staff, working with Unitarian Universalist lay leaders and ministers on dynamics of institutional change, leadership transitions, leadership development, crisis intervention and compassionate communication. Along with UUA President Susan Frederick-Gray, he was among the clergy counter-protesters at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville where counter-protester Heather Heyer was killed. Over the past year and a half, he’s become involved in the Democratic Party in his home state of Mississippi, first with his own Congressional campaign, and later as a volunteer with other mid-term campaigns, including that of former US Secretary of Agriculture Mike Espy.

Sunday Parking: Please note UUCA has two overflow parking lots. We ask able-bodied drivers to please park either in the Arlington Hall Park (off of 4th Street) or in the Mason's lot across from the church on George Mason Drive. When parking in the Mason's lot, please cross at the traffic light. See map here.

Weather Notice: The forecast is for snow and freezing temps on Sunday. If the weather is questionable, please check the church website ( or your inbox or social media for church status announcements. Please put safety first when accessing conditions outside your door.
Holiday Services

Wednesday, December 19, 7:30 p.m.
Stepping Outside the Holiday

Friday, December 21, 7:30 p.m.
Solstice Transmission Meditation Service

Sunday, December 23, 9:15 & 11:15 a.m.
Holiday Pageant
Monday, December 24, 3 & 5 p.m.
Christmas Eve for All Ages - w/ Mitten Tree Ritual

Monday, December 24, 7 p.m.
Traditional Lessons & Carols

Monday, December 24, 9 p.m.
Christmas Eve Jazz Service

Other Holiday Happenings Schedule here
MoonFire Yule Ritual
You are welcome to join MoonFire for a Yule Ritual on December 16. Come see the annual battle between the forces of winter and spring. Engage in theological debates about the two Kings. Come celebrate the “reason for the season” with carols, crafting, and a good old fashioned Pagan ritual. This family-friendly ritual will involve the conjuration of luck and good cheer in the upcoming season through singing, crafting of small tokens, and the lighting of candles of hope and joy. But no wagering on the battle between winter and summer, since everyone, except the Holly King of Winter, knows the outcome. As always, potluck will follow the ritual. For more information on MoonFire, please visit, or contact

Date: Sunday, December 16, 1:30 p.m.
Location: Fellowship Hall
Friday Morning Devotions
We invite you to smooth the path into the weekend with a half-hour of meditation followed by shared reflections each Friday morning beginning at 7 a.m. Please contact in advance either David McTaggart ( ) or Gregg Forte ( ). A ride is available afterward to Ballston Metro.

Date: Each Friday, 7:00 a.m.
Location: Room 20 (Youth Room) 
Church Matters
Connecting with the Ministerial Search Committee
Beyond Categorical Thinking Workshop, Process Observations
By Bee Moradi, Ministerial Search Committee Member

Hello from another member of the Ministerial Search Committee (MSC)! My name is Bee Moradi and I have been attending UUCA since 2011. I was born in Tehran, Iran, and at the age of three, moved to Virginia where I quickly became responsible for translating language and culture between my family and our new surroundings. I went to college in Charlottesville (Go ‘Hoos!), and consider myself a Virginia girl who loves kabob, rice, and Rumi. 

Because of my multicultural upbringing, I have an innate ability to understand multiple perspectives, bridge divides, and respect differences. The neighborhood I grew up in consisted of predominately white, Christian families, teaching me at a very young age the value of diversity in every community. In college, I established a chapter of a national multicultural service-based sorority on my campus – the first and only of its kind – for which I served on the National Board of Directors and that has since grown to over 2,000 members. The organization intentionally recruits members from different backgrounds and celebrates those differences.

Lifespan Religious Education
UUCA Youth add 'Songwriting' to list of talents
This fall UUCA's Youth have been working with Maya Rogers, UUCA Artist in Residence, to create a choral piece that integrates songwriting, harmony and even a little improvisation. So, please don't miss this Sunday, December 9, when our fabulously talented Youth perform their creation under the direction of Maya.
Youth Group Made It Easy -- As in PIE!
A couple of weeks ago the Youth Group held a pie baking extravaganza--baking over 50 pies into the wee hours of the night as a fundraiser for their spring work trips. It was a great "all-hands" team-building experience along with learning pie baking recipes and secrets to that perfect crust. THANK YOU to everyone who bought pies AND a HUGE THANK YOU to Julia Peterson, Youth Coordinator, and her intrepid team of youth leaders. Mark your calendar for the next Youth bake sale on December 23.
Faith in Action
Share-the-Plate Dec. 9: Service Never Sleeps
As part of UUCA's commitment to work to end racism, we have partnered with Service Never Sleeps, a nonprofit in Arlington dedicated to their signature workshop called “Allyship.” Allyship is about moving people to a new paradigm of thinking about privilege and marginalized communities. Allyship promotes the idea that we can be bridge-builders who work together, and support each other toward the common purpose of ensuring equality, equity, and inclusion for everyone. These workshops teach about the causes of social injustice, how to be an effective ally for marginalized communities, and how to actively influence and educate others. Your generous donations helps SNS continue its work toward a world where equal rights, justice, and opportunity are available to all.

Donations are accepted for each week's STP recipient through the following Saturday at midnight. Make online donations here. 
Secret Santa 2018
Secret Santa is one of UUCA's favorite holiday giving traditions. This year we will give gifts to over 140 needy kids and family members from Buckingham, Beacon House and UUCA. Santa Trees are in the upper and lower lobbies through December 10. On Sunday and Monday nights, select a gift tag from the tree and sign the sheet. Enjoy shopping for the suggested items on the tag and bring the gift back with the Secret Santa gift tag attached (an important detail) by December 16. There will be helpful elves by the trees to help you. We plan to deliver the presents on or before December 17, so please return your gift no later than December 16. If you have questions, feel free to ask the tree elves or contact the head Elf, AKA Little Jimmy Terpstra at 703-908-9231 or
Survey and Information Meetings about the 8th Principle

Survey is now open: Please take this survey on the proposed 8th Principle. It’s important to hear from the whole congregation. Survey closes on December 20. Link to survey here. 

Information Meetings: Sundays, December 16 and January 13 (following both 9:15 and 11:15 services). Come to learn more about the proposed 8th Principle.

Informal coffee chat with Rev. Carlton Elliott Smith: December 9 (in Fellowship Hall, following both 9:15 and 11:15 services). Rev. Carlton, who lives in Mississippi, will briefly join us to share perspectives from his anti-racism work as a UUA staff member with regional responsibilities.

Background: The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) is considering the addition of an 8th principle to the 7 principles of the UUA Covenant. 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, follow the 8th Principle Task Force on Facebook @UUCA8thPrinciple.
Write to your Senators in support of Federal criminal justice reform
Congress has just a few working days left to pass meaningful legislation to address inequities in our Federal criminal justice system. On Dec. 9, come to the UU's for Social Justice "Write Here! Write Now!" table in Fellowship Hall to write personal letters to your Senators. Information on the pending legislation, pros and cons, under consideration, will be available. Or write your letter in advance and drop it off. UUSJ's Capitol Hill Advocacy Corps will hand-deliver letters to Senators on Dec. 11. Questions? Contact Lavona Grow at To learn more about the Advocacy Corps check out the UUSJ's advocacy page or join UUSJ's online information session on Dec. 12 at 8 p.m. ET. Register at or link here to the registration page
Did you miss Mistletoe Mall? Get UUSC Cards and Equal Exchange Products this Sunday
Between services only (10:15-11:30) this Sunday in the Fellowship Hall you will be able to buy the cards and Equal Exchange coffees, teas, chocolate bars, cocoa mix, almonds, cashews and Palestinian olive oil. The Equal Exchange sales benefit the UU Service Committee.

Date: Sunday, December 9, between services
Location: Center Gallery
NoVA-UUJME Meeting on Israel/Palestine

On Wednesday, December 7, 7:30 p.m., NoVA-UUJME (UUs for Justice in the Middle East) will meet in the Volunteer Room at UUCA. The first half hour of the meeting will feature a talk by John and Chris Sutton about their recent trip to Israel, Palestine and Jordan. We will also hear reports from those who attended the Oasis of Peace presentation at nearby Congregation Etz Hayim. All are welcome! For additional information, contact Allan Kellum (703-599-2560), Convener of the NOVA-UUJME Chapter at UUCA.

Date: Wednesday, December 5, 7:30
Location: Volunteer Room
Dream Project Holiday Dinner
UUCAers are cordially invited to the VA Dream Project 9th Annual Holiday Dinner at UUCA on December 7. Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring is keynote speaker. The VA Dream Project started nine years ago with a group of concerned parents and community members organizing a small holiday dinner to raise money for scholarships for undocumented students. Four scholarships were awarded that first year and this year scholarships topped 95! Please join us as we continue the tradition of coming together as a community to support the dreams of all of our students. RSVP here.

Date: Friday, December 7, 6:30-9:30 p.m.
Location: Center Gallery
Administrative Assistant Position
Do you have a passion for social justice but administration and related communications are really your forte? Are you looking to work with an advocacy organization doing mission and values driven work? Unitarian Universalists for Social Justice (UUSJ), is seeking a part-time administrative assistant (AA) for a part-time position in the Washington D.C. area. Job description here. Shows of interest and referrals welcomed at
UUCA Peace Camp 2018
Save the dates June 26-July 6
Good news, UUCA and Little Friends for Peace (LFFP) have set the dates for our 22nd anniversary Peace Camp at UUCA: June 24 to June 28 and July 1 to July 5 (no camp on July 4). 

Campers (ages 5-14) can attend both weeks or just one. UUCA Peace Camp offers campers the opportunity to explore cooperation and conflict resolution in a safe and supportive environment. At Peace Camp, campers will discover that peace begins with them. Plan for your peacemaker to attend both weeks, or just one, depending on your schedule. Registration will open soon.

Peace Camp at UUCA is a partnership between UUCA Peace Ministry and Little Friends for Peace.  

Dates: Week 1: Mon 6/24 to Fri. 6/28
Week 2: Mon. 7/1 to Fri. 7/5, except Thurs. 7/4
Music Ministry
Children's Choir for December

December 9
10:30-11 a.m. Chalice Singers
12:30-1 p.m. TrUUbadours
Both in the Chapel

December 16 
10:30-11 a.m. Chalice Singers
12:30-1 p.m. TrUUbadours
Both in the Chapel

December 23 
All Children's Choirs sing for both services.
National Chamber Ensemble Holiday Concert: Holiday Time Warp
Features 2018 Outstanding Young Artist Achievement Award Winners

Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington
NCE puts the spotlight on youth for the holidays! Christmas Past, Present and Future are celebrated when the National Chamber Ensemble (NCE) presents Holiday Time Warp featuring classical masterpieces, seasonal favorites, a performance by area string students and the winner of NCE's Outstanding Young Artist Achievement Award.

The evening concludes with a Carols Sing-Along, led by beloved tenor and media personality Patrick D. McCoy. The concert will be followed by a wine and cheese reception. More information and tickets here.

Date: Saturday, December 15, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Sanctuary 
Congregational Life
Day Alliance Special Holiday Music Event
All are invited! Bring a Friend!
All are invited to the Day Alliance Holiday Music Event with The Trinity Winds, a five-member chamber orchestra. Music includes a traditional mixture of seasonal music and classical pieces by Mozart, Bach, and Ibert. The five-member orchestra includes:

Martine Micozzi, flute
Carol Feather Martin, oboe and piano
Dietmar Szymanowski, French horn
Julie Berry, clarinet
Alan Karnovitz, bassoon

The performance is followed by an optional lunch. No reservation for the performance needed, but please reserve for lunch at We hope you will join us, invite others and spread the word.

Date: Tuesday, December 11, 10:30 a.m. Coffee | 11 a.m. Music performance | 12 p.m. Lunch (optional)
Location: Center Gallery
UUCA's Annual Shenandoah Retreat
**NEW DATES** June 21-23, 2019
Join us for our 45th year! The UUCA Shenandoah Retreat is a family-friendly, multi-generational meetup at Big Meadows Campground in Shenandoah National Park. Campground reservations open for our dates in just a few weeks on December 21, so don't miss out! Stay in a campsite or in the Big Meadows lodge. More info about the retreat and a link to our registration and the campground reservation page can be found here.
We'd Love to Meet You!
Every Sunday, UUCAers at Goodwin House Baileys Crossroads gather for fellowship and the streaming of the 11:15 worship service. Church volunteers set up the Roku streaming and the volunteer typically is treated to lunch afterward. We'd love to have a few more volunteers join the team. Adults, teens, and children (with parents) are more than welcome to join us. If you would like to volunteer for the team, please contact Commissioned Lay Minister Diane Ullius,
HUUmanist Holiday Extravaganza! 
The HUUmanists will celebrate the season in the Board Room with stories, conversation, and conviviality. Bring something seasonal to share (a story, a reading, a joke, and/or something to eat or drink)—or just come whether you are naughty or nice--and join us for the HUUmanist Holiday Extravaganza. Everyone’s welcome. For further information, contact Jere Cummins,  

Date: Tuesday,  December 11, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Board Room
Men's Book Group:
The Soul of an Octopus
The Men's Book Group meets the second Sunday of each month to discuss a wide range of genres--fiction and non-fiction. Newcomers are always welcome to join in--even if you haven't read the book. In December they will discuss The Soul of An Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness by Sy Montgomery. It is described as "An investigation of the emotional and physical world of the octopus." Questions? Please email Ken Marshall, or call 703-533-8004. 

Date: Sunday, December 9, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Chapel
New Pastoral Care Gathering
Death Cafe
A Death Cafe gathering seeks to increase awareness of death with a view to help people make the most of their (finite) lives. It's a safe, welcoming place in which people share their ideas, concerns, fears, and hopes about death. Death Cafe's have become a global movement. There have been thousands of Death Cafe gatherings held throughout the world. From the administrative details of death and dying to the most profound spiritual or philosophical issues, all topics are welcome. Mark your calendar for January 20. Come for the coffee, tea and cake, and stay for what promises to be interesting and stimulating conversation.

Date: Sunday, January 20, 1:30 p.m.
Location: Activity Room
Wheel of Life
LeeAnn photo
Congratulations to LeeAnn Williams , Director of Lifespan and Religious Education, on receiving Renaissance recognition from the UUA Faith Development Office. LeeAnn has completed 75 hours of training in children and adult faith development.
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Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, VA
4444 Arlington Blvd
Arlington, Virginia
Call: (703) 892-2565