September 20 - 26, 2018
The CommUUnicator
The Weekly Newsletter of
The Unitarian Society of Germantown
Building Beloved Community

THIS WEEK: We welcome Rev. Libby this Sunday, who will be giving what another minister as described as a "brilliant" sermon (no pressure, Rev.); we offer various short gatherings and social justice alerts; and we celebrate Mabon.
In Worship, 10:30am
In Praise of Blurred Vision, Rev. Libby Smith
It’s easy to assume that we’re better off when we see things clearly, and can work from an accurate analysis of ourselves and the world around us. But realism has its limits, and there may be a greater role for illusion than we generally acknowledge.
Thank you!
We thank Eileen Teti for the lovely gift of flowers from her garden, which will grace the chancel this Sunday.
In Child Spiritual Development
Our CSD classes for the year have begun! Children begin the morning in the Sanctuary with their families and then at 10:45am are sung out to their classes:
  • PreK - K - Sullivan 1
  • Grades 1 - 3 - Youth Lodge/Nursery School, 1st Fl.
  • Grades 4 - 6 - Sullivan 2 & 3
  • OWL, Grades 7 - 8 -Bristol Room
Parents, please click here to find out details, especially about where to collect the children after the service ends.

Our Youth Group will begin this Sunday evening, Sept. 23, from 6:00 - 8:00pm, and in future will meet sometimes on Sunday mornings and sometimes on Sunday evenings.

We will not have a Coming of Age class this year.

Details about the CSD programs and schedules can be found on the website under the Spiritual Development tab.

Childcare for children 4-5 years old and younger is offered this Sunday and most Sundays from 9:00am - 12:00pm in the Committee Room. 
Before the Worship Service

Meditate in the Meditation Room
Meditation, reading, dharma and sharing are offered in Sullivan 3 on the First and Second Sundays of the month between 9:15 and 10:20am. All are welcome to join in quietly. On the other Sundays the space is open for those who choose to come and sit. For information on meditation, click here.

Drop off nonperishable food items to the designated carts in the Kitchen for delivery to St. Vincent's Food Pantry. Huge thanks for the recent abundance! Let's keep it up!
Coffee Hour
After the Worship Service

Enjoy refreshments provided by Village 7.

Attend the Humanists (PUSH) Meeting at 12:00pm in Sullivan Chapel.

Attend UU-101 at 12:00pm in the Daskam Room.

Attend "What We Learned at GA" presentation at 12:00pm upstairs in the Edna Jones Room.

Sign up for a Small Group Ministry. Several groups have openings. Click here for details and for openings. (add'l info below.)

SignUp is the reminder tool USG uses to organize volunteers for our upcoming activities. Click Here to go to our group page to sign up online.

Then return Sunday evening for either one or both of TWO special events:
....Return this Sunday evening at 5:00pm for 90 minutes of a Mindfulness Meditation in Nuturing Kindness , led by Deborah Cooper. Click here for details. Look for signage on how to access the Sullivan Chapel.
...And celebrate Mabon , the Autumn Equinox, starting at 7:00pm this Sunday, September 23, around the fire pit in the USG Grove! Click here for details.

Opening Eyes
Rev. Kent Matthies
Sunday, September 30, 10:30am
Too often we can live our days with a blurred vision or even closed eyes. Too often we fail to recognize opportunities to become our fullest, truest selves. In a world crammed with “options,” the challenge can be figuring out how and where to put your energies. As you listen to your soul, what is your vision for your life?  
Ending Racism Video of the Month
Friday, September 28, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
The previously scheduled September ERC movie,  Black Panther , has been postponed. ERC will instead screen a talk by Prof. Ibram Kendi, author of the book, Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America . Click here to read more.
red school house
Panel Discussion on The Future of Philadelphia Public Schools - New School Board -- New Day?
Sunday, September 30, 12:30 - 2:00pm, Edna Jones Assembly Room
Jessica Stanforth from the Cooperative Nursery School at USG will moderate a panel of local public school advocates, parents, and teachers. Each will express their views about our children's future. Join the Social Justice Council for light snacks before this lively event, its Q&A and networking afterwards. Click here for details and list of panel members.
Still-Open Auction Events:

Classic Dealer's Choice Penny Ante Poker
Friday, September 21 at 7:00pm.
At Gerry and Eileen Whelan's home in Wyndmoor.
$15. There is space for 3 more. Interested? Contact Kay Weiser .

Press Club Dinner
October 5, 6:30 pm
Diane Fiske gives USG people an opportunity to come to the oldest private press club in the US. Guests can view media memorabilia dating back to the early 20th century, enjoy gourmet food, wine and beer. Adults: $15. The cost of the dinner and drinks will be each person's responsibility. Carpooling from USG. 9 spaces available. If interested, contact Kay Weiser , 215-527-3179.

Fall Dog Day Afternoon
Saturday, October 6 from 3:00 - 5:00pm
Join Bonnie McDairmant, Carolyn Scott, other USGers and their furry friends for a romp in the Wissahickon. Room for 2 more of any age. $15. Contact Kay Weiser .
Breakfast with the Minister
Visitor and New Member Breakfast
Sunday, October 7, 9-10:15am
All Visitors and New Members are invited to breakfast with the Minister. Please let the Welcoming chairs, Treva Burger and Lisa know if you are able to come by
emailing or calling 215-983-3783.
USG at Outfest
Sunday, October 7, 3:00 - 5:00pm
Meet at Giovanni’s Room (AIDS Thrift and Bookstore) at the corner of 12th and Pine, then set off together to enjoy… Philadelphia OutFest!

Welcoming Congregation Refresher "Coming Out Day" Evening
Thursday, October 11, 6:00 - 8:00pm
As part of USG’s Welcoming Congregation Refresher , we gather to “come out” as LGBTQ, as friends and allies.

6:00pm: Light dinnertime refreshments (potluck) with conversation. Dining Room.
7:00pm: Marianne Banbor, Librarian Supervisor at the Philadelphia Free Library, will speak on Gay History in Philadelphia with a focus on and tribute to Barbara Gittings. Sullivan Chapel.
Interested in Joining USG?
USG welcomes New Members during a Signing Ceremony held four times a year. Our next New Membership Signing will be on Sunday, October 21. If you are interested in information about the Path to Membership, please visit the Membership page in the Home menu on our website,   or contact Treva Burger at .
Construction is Ongoing - Several Reminders
The area in the grove that's now fenced in is a hard hat area and access is limited to the construction workers. Parents, we know big holes are fascinating, but please prevent children from getting too close.

Please look for signage about how to access the Sullivan Chapel.The stairway to the Sullivan wing is no longer accessible; the only access to the Sullivan Chapel wing will be through the side door off the courtyard.

Courtyard parking is limited to only those needing an accessible entrance . The courtyard is now our only accessible entrance, as the ramp into the Edna Jones Room is now closed. In addition, we have less room in that area because of the construction pod. Please be mindful of those with greater needs.
Second Workday for the Woods Project
Sunday, September 30, from 12:00 to 4:00pm
We will be installing benches and laying gravel. If you will be available to help, please RSVP to Roderick Ahrens ( , 267/994/5679).
Rain date is the following Sunday, October 7, also 12:00 to 4:00pm.
Come Join the Choir!
The illustrious USG choir is looking for some additional singers! All that is necessary is the ability to match pitch and a desire to be a part of a venerable USG tradition that regularly rehearses (on Thursday evenings and on Sunday mornings) and sings at most Sunday services from September through the end of May. Interested? Please see Mark Daugherty , our music man.
USG Video Team
Would you like to get more involved at USG? Do you have experience working with video or images or want to become more experienced in this area? Rev. Kent is looking for several people to assist him with video production for a series of videos he would like to create to complement our spiritual development programs.

In addition, the Worship Arts team is looking for individuals who can work with Rev. Kent and the various guest speakers and worship associates on Sunday worship slides creation . If you would like to be a part of these creative teams or if you would like more information, please contact Kent at or send a note to .

We will be following a new curriculum, Soul Matters Sharing Circle, for SGM this year.

Signups during Fellowship Hour for SGMs continue for two more Sundays.

Several groups have openings for new members.  Follow this link  for availability (towards the bottom of the page) or visit the SGM table at fellowship hour to signup. You may also contact the group leader or Treva Burger, at  or 215-277-5752, for more information or to sign up.
We are excited to announce our new Give+ Text option for making pledge and contribution payments to USG!
Please click here to learn how to use this convenient tool.
A New Form for Your Questions & Comments
Are you ever perplexed about what to do with your question, suggestion, comment, request or new contact information at USG? The Welcoming team has created a new form just for you. It will be available at the Welcome table on Sundays and also in the foyer where the name tags are.
Thank You, Villagers!
Thank you to all who participate in hosting Fellowship Hour! If you are willing to coordinate for your Village, please let Treva Burger, know. Below is the schedule for Fellowship Hour Hosting in September.
  • September 23 - Village 7
  • September 30 - Village 8
Your Vote Counts
Have you registered to vote?
Deadline in PA is Tuesday, October 9. Click here.
Rebuilding Together Philadelphia---
USG's Major Hands-on Service Project
Friday - Saturday, October 19 and 20

Get involved! Help rehab a home!
Join USG and RTP staff members in Philadelphia’s Kensington section. On Friday and/or Saturday, October 19-20, you can complete project tasks for one day or for both days. Whether you’re skilled or not, you will improve the neighborhood. Up to 20 other organizations will renovate homes within a few blocks of each other. While we work with the homeowners, we will hear their stories and learn of their challenges and resilience. You can be a part of this amazing effort too.  

For more information about volunteering for this event, talk to USG's new RTP leaders Barbara Ginn and/or George Buckmann during Fellowship Hour.

If you’re 14 years old or older, volunteer for either one or both days by sending an email to Barbara Ginn at

Say NO to Indefinite Detention of Migrant Children
The Trump administration has proposed a regulation that will permit children crossing the border with their parents to be put into detention indefinitely. More information is here in this New York Times editorial, "Don't Let Migrant Kids Rot."

There is a quick, easy, and very important action that anyone can do:  Please protest these cruel new regulations by submitting your concern on the Federal Register's request for public comments - go to and enter DHS Docket No. ICEB-2018-0002 .  We want to flood the comment board with our objections to this continuing persecution of immigrant families.
The above comes from UUPLAN's Action Alert
for A 21st Century Living Wage
Thursday, Sept 27, 10:00am
Join POWER and USG reps at Philadelphia City Council to urge a bill advocating the 21st Century Living Wage Campaign, seeking to increase the minimum wage to $15/hour for all city workers and those who work for city contract and sub-contractor agencies.
Immigration Justice
Meeting of the New Sanctuary Committee of St. Vincent DePaul
Wednesday, October 10, 7:00pm
St. Vincent de Paul's Hospitality Room
Two families entered Sanctuary at the First United Methodist Church of Germantown (FUMCOG) on September 6. FUMCOG's Rev. Bob Coombe has declared their church a Germantown Sanctuary and has invited all congregations to care for and support the families. This meeting will discuss ways people can do just that.

If you and/or your family want to become involved in this inspiring and courageous endeavor for justice, contact Yvonne Marlier at or Rev. Kent Matthies .
Save the Date!   
Saturday, October 13, in Harrisburg
UUPLAN's "Leadership Day 2018"
All who share an interest in advocacy and organizing for justice are welcome. More info and registration at . and by talking with USG's Dennis Brunn ( and at 215-984-8786).
COOP Nursery School
The Cooperative Nursery School is now accepting applications for the 2019-20 school year. It’s a great little nursery school for three- to five-year-olds. School hours are 8:15am through 3pm. Preference is given wherever possible for contributing USG members. Submit your application online at .
Open house is Wednesday, October 10 at 7:00pm in the school house; no RSVP necessary. Come learn about the school’s education philosophies and cooperative community.
Jess Stanforth
CNS | Administrative Coordinator
Greater Philly UU Cluster Events
September 22, 9:30 am - 4:00 pm
First Unitarian Church of Wilmington, DE

GPC Meeting
September 29, 9:30 - 11:30 am (9:00 meet and greet)
UC of West Chester, 501 S. High Street, West Chester, PA 19382
- we'll debrief the UU Community Weekend, discuss upcoming Legislative Advocacy training, and more. All are welcome!

Marx in Soho (one man play) at Mainline UC, Sept 23 at 7pm: See attached flyer or
Get Involved! Meet Fellow UUs!  
Follow links below to find out more information about the events and groups at USG that occur usually once a month.

20's & 30's SGM Group - Second Thursday, October 11, 6:30pm, Drop-in Young Adults Small Group Ministry group. For more information, please contact Stephanie Bonner at or on Facebook where they maintain an active invite-only activities group. 

Book Group on Friday Morning - Third Friday, 10:30am discussions September 21 at Cathedral Village. If interested in joining, please contact Barbara Dowdall. The 2018-2019 Book List is now posted on> About> Affinity Groups> Book Group .

CAMI (Citizens Against Mass Incarceration) - Fourth Monday, September 24, 7:00pm. At USG. Contact Nancy Anderson .

Caregiver Support Group - Second Friday, October 12, 11:00am - 1:00pm. At USG. Contact Maura Gallagher .

EarthSpirit Circle . First Monday, except for holiday weekends. Next meeting October 1, 7:00pm. At USG. Contact Donya at

ERC (Ending Racism Committee) - First Sunday, October 7, 12:00 - 1:30pm. At USG. Contact Barbara Dowdall .

Humanists - PUSH - Philadelphia Unitarian Society of Humanists , Fourth Sunday, September 23, 12:00pm. At USG. Contact Paul Teti .

Nature Walking at Valley Green - Every Monday and Thursday at 9:00am, you can meet others - whoever shows up- at Valley Green in Chestnut Hill for a morning walk. Point Person is Steve Conrad, who is usually there.

Needle Exchange, a Handwork Group - Next meeting will be October 3, 1:30 - 3:00pm, off-site. (Usually First Wednesday). Contact Margaret Thompson .

Open Small Group Ministry - Usually Second Sunday but this September we offer instead one more Drop-In SGM, on Sunday, September 30 at 12:15pm in the Minister's Office. Those new to SGMs can get a "sample" before making a commitment. For more information, contact Treva at .

UU-101 - Usually third Sunday but next session will be September 23 , 12:00-1:00pm. UU-101 is an Introduction to Unitarian Universalism, held at USG, and childcare is provided. Please let a leader, Charles Gabriel or Eric Foster, know that you plan to attend by emailing to If unable to email, you can call Eric at 484-347-8998.
Join A USG Facebook Group!   
You can join a USG Facebook group as well as meet in person!
To find out about special events, post photos, and stay in touch, here are some of USG's groups and their Facebook links:

ASD (Adult Spiritual Development) facebook
CSD (Child Spiritual Development)
YRUU (Young Religious Unitarian Universalists) A Closed Group great to know about and if desired, ask to join.
YA - Young Adults
Greater Philly UUs - Social Justice & Other Greater Philly UU News

P.U.S.H. Philadelphia Unitarian Society of Humanists

Exploring Elderhood
caring square
Our thoughts and prayers are with...
...Anne Clarey, who is suffering from sciatica and is experiencing difficult pain. Cards and emails are welcome.

...The family of Dallis and Berne Graham . Dallis’ brother, Peter Graham, died on September 3 from complications of diabetes.

Congratulations and best wishes to.. .
...  The Klein-Scearce family , which has a new configuration these days.  Ilene Klein has accepted a job in a deaf/hard of hearing classroom with the Indian River School District, allowing her to reside during the week at their beloved beach place in Rehobeth Beach.  Monae Klein-Scearce has embarked on her freshman year at Northampton Community College in Bethlehem PA.

...two of our youth, Benjamin Smith and Roderick Ahrens , who both made the semi-finalist list of the National Merit Scholarship exam! WhooHoo!

Caring Team
Linda Bernstein (chair), Sarah West, Rev. Kent Matthies

If you are aware of any joys or concerns that should be part of our caring system, please let us know. You can email
If you call a caring team member and do not speak directly, leave a voice mail and your call will be returned ASAP.
Rev. Kent Matthies, Minister -
Ryan Hurd, Director of Spiritual Development -
Mark Daugherty, Music Director -
Gloria Guldager, Church Administrator-
Carolyn Scott, Asst. Administrator-
Carolyn Cotton, Rental Coordinator -
Mike Rogers, Sunday Morning and Special Events Sexton -  
Tuesday's SPIRIT (not every Tuesday in the Summer) - Friday by 3:00pm
Thursday's Weekly eCommUUnicator - Wednesday by noon
Sunday's Announcements - Thursday by noon

The Unitarian Society of Germantown | 215-844-1157 | 6511 Lincoln Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19119