There's something about attics
that can mesmerize and paralyze.
They're good for "tripping"
and forgetting this present world.
It's best not to risk a visit to the attic
unless one is prepared to let "twenty minutes"
become half a day.
The "I remember room,"
it brings lumps to the throat
or chuckles of recollection.
It is well that we visit our attics,
but, as mother used to say,
"Don't drag things down."
There's beauty and deep meaning
in the attic,
but it mustn't be the living room.
It's not for changing,
And to live is always to change.
~ Author Unknown
This month's theme is reflection. It seems to me that reflecting can be a tricky business. It can be mesmerizing and paralyzing. We can find ourselves living in the attic -- where the past is the only place that feels meaningful. Without an awareness of the pull of the attic, we can find ourselves unconsciously trying to recreate the past even as the rest of the world has moved on.
Best to take a trip to the attic, name what was most meaningful rather than rummaging through all the old memories. Then you can bring those values down into the living room without dragging a lot of things down. When you make what you valued about the past conscious, you can set a conscious intention to carry those values forward -- even as circumstances change.
During my young adult years, I was incredibly nostalgic about summer camp. Those summers were special times with special people -- filled with traditions and memories. I still know the lyrics to a lot of camp songs and faithfully go to reunions every five years. I've discovered as I've gotten older that it's really never too late to have a happy childhood. In fact, I've had adventures with friends this summer that made me think, more than once, "this feels like camp." And I've discovered that in some ways I like camp for adults better than I liked camp as a kid. To create "camp" for adults I've had to figure out what it was about camp when I was growing up that was so meaningful. And I've had to realize that as an adult I have the power to create those kinds of experiences for myself.
It's all part of the discernment process, a process not dissimilar to the process of discernment you're going through now as you prepare for your next settled minister. So as we think about reflection this month, we'll take a look in the attic but with an eye to looking more deeply, developing a conscious awareness of the meaning and values inherent in the life of this congregation that you want to nurture -- what it is that you really want to bring down into the living room as you look toward the future together.
It's a pleasure and a privilege to be on this journey with you.
Faithfully Yours, Rev. Carol
Sunday Services at 10:30AM
Worship Service and Afternoon Workshop)
Rev. Jane Dwinell, a trained facilitator with years of experience, will be joining us from the Unitarian Universalist Association's Transitions Office to lead the service and workshop. Both are designed to promote inclusive thinking to help prevent unconscious or unfair discrimination in the search for a new minister. It is a helpful and healthy process.
After Church: The Search Committee will provide lunch between the worship service and the workshop, which will begin at noon. Childcare will be provided.
Rev. Olav Nieuwejaar, Minister Emeritus
This past June, at the Unitarian Universalist Ministers' Association Annual Meeting in Kansas City, Rev. Nieuwejaar had the honor of preaching the "50-Year Sermon" -- an opportunity to reflect on 50 years of Unitarian Universalist ministry as part of a worship service attended by 500 UU ministers. The theme was "hope", which over the years became the central theme of Rev. Nieuwejaar's ministry, the leitmotif behind every sermon he wrote and his attitude about life in general. His journey seems especially relevant as we continue to wrestle with change in a hurting and chaotic world.
Rev. Carol Strecker
Unitarian Universalism is a relatively young religious tradition, but we have deep roots. On January 13, 1568, King John Sigismund of Transylvania convened a counsel of religious leaders. They affirmed the right of conscience and the value of diversity in religious thought in the Edict of Torda, a profound statement of religious toleration that is the bedrock of our liberal religious tradition. What was this amazing document? How did it come about? And how might it still be relevant for us today?
We hope that Reverend Tamás Tófalvi, minister of UUCM's Partner Church in Szekelyszentmihaly, Transylvania, will be able to offer some of his insights on the meaning of the Edict of Torda for Unitarians in Transylvania today.
Rev. Carol Strecker
As the harvest is gathered in and the earth begins to prepare for a long winter's nap, we're reminded that death is part of the cycle of life. As we watch the leaves don their finery and let go of life, we're reminded of the loved ones we've lost and the gifts they've passed on to us. We remember them, honor them, and celebrate them as we celebrate the cycles and seasons of life.
Children/Youth - Halloween Party
NOTE: You are invited to submit photos of loved ones who have died in the last year for a slideshow that will be part of the service. Photos from previous years will be shown before and after the service. If you haven't submitted a photo of a loved one who died more than a year ago, feel free to submit one as well. Send pictures (in jpeg format) to Candy Shirey by October 20. Be sure to include: loved one's name, year of birth, year of death, and their relationship to a UUCM congregant.
Please take a brief moment a register your child(ren) and/or youth:
In October, Sunday Morning Circles (grades 1 - 6)
will emphasize our first principle, the inherent worth and dignity of all beings.
Saturday, Oct 6:
UUCM's Harvest Pantry @ the Pumpkin Festival
We invite all families to come! We will have baked goods for sale, free face painting and games, and $5 pony rides!
See description below.
Sunday, Oct 7: Sunday Morning Circle:
Church Wide Scavenger Hunt
The children will learn a little bit about the history of our unique congregation while searching the building for clues.
Sunday, Oct 14: Service Project:
The children will create bags will with personal hygiene products to be given out to local community members in need.
Sunday, Oct 21: Sunday Morning Circle:
While adults learn about religious freedom through the Edict of Torda
children will begin to learn the different religious sources that Unitarian Universalism draws from.
Sunday, Oct 28:
Sunday Morning Circle:
All Souls Day
While adults honor loved ones that have passed this year, children will learn how people around the world honor their ancestors.
During coffee hour:
During the Congregational Business Meeting, children and youth can carve or paint a pumpkin! Games include pumpkin bowling and pumpkin
tic-tac-toe! Snacks provided. Contact the office for info or to help.
As a reminder, every Sunday we offer:
(for infants through Kindergarten age) starting at 10:15am.
anytime during a service. In the Family Room, you can listen to the service and play with an array of crafts, books, and games.
Parents must stay with their children in this room.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to reach out to Jamie or the CYFF Committee chairs, Julie Adl-Zarabi and Kristin Rounds.
UU History: "Long Strange Trip" -- a six-part video series continues.
Dates: October 18 & 25, November 8 & 15
Time: 6:30 - 8:30pm - Feel free to bring your supper to eat while watching.
Location: The Granite Room
News & Activities
Council Changes due to Illness
Our Council President, Tricia Jalbert, was diagnosed with a serious illness in August that will prevent her from being able to fulfill that role for the foreseeable future.
In light of her extended absence, Council has agreed to temporarily shift responsibilities, as follows, until further notice:
- Vice President Marti Kennedy will serve as Acting President.
- Clerk Scott Blanchard will serve as Acting Vice President.
- At Large Rep Elise DeMichael will serve as Acting Clerk.
Council requests that anyone needing to contact any member of Council please use
, and indicate clearly which Council member you are trying to contact in the SUBJECT line.
We thank you for your patience as Council works to fulfill its responsibilities to our congregation during this difficult time.
At this meeting, we will be voting on the information presented at the congregational meeting on Sept. 30 regarding the 5-year-plan for salaries and benefits for our settled minister and administrator. A formal Call To Meeting will be posted soon, as per the Bylaws. To read more about what is presented on September 30th, see the '
' item on the church calendar for Sept 30 at 11:30am.
Sunday, October 21 from 11:30-1
Immediately following the service on October 21, join us for a church-wide potluck luncheon as we reconnect with old friends and welcome new ones to our congregation. Please bring a dish to share, listing key ingredients. See the
Food Allergen Policy
. Contact Dona Eaton.
Expand your circle of UUCM friends this fall by participating in Sharing Friends, a program that fosters multigenerational relationships within the congregation.
This interactive program provides a variety of opportunities to bond with your new friend -- by connecting at one of the many planned Sharing Friends events, bonding over the games and activities during Coffee Hour, or leaving notes and letters. This program kicks off on November 4, so sign up now in Barnum Hall or by contacting Jamie (email@example.com, 673-1870).
Beyond Categorical Thinking is a highly recommended part of the search process
This workshop is another way for us to put
our faith into lived experience and improve the odds that, regardless of identity, we will
find the minister who is the best match for us and will serve us well.
Following the service, Rev. Dwinell will facilitate the workshop, providing opportunity to explore our views and expand our vision. The Search Committee will provide luncheon for workshop participants and their children. Childcare will be provided. The Search Committee urges all to attend the service and then stay for this vital opportunity!
Search Committee member Mark Schwartzberg asks you to send him photographs of congregational activities to be included in our congregational packet to help ministerial candidates learn more about our congregation and the Milford area. He also wants to know your thoughts about what makes Milford, the Milford area, the Souhegan Valley, southern NH and New England special (bullet lists are fine). This will let prospective ministers know what a great place we live in and what a wonderful community and congregation we have!
Come downtown and enjoy Milford's premier event! UUCM will again be selling delicious baked goods and refreshments at the end of our driveway. There will be tables and chairs so you can sit, relax, and enjoy a snack. There will be free
face painting and
games, and $5
- Make baked goods or preserves
- Bring your goodies to church on Friday, Oct. 5th or before 10am on Saturday morning.
- Package items individually, but leave pies/cakes whole..
- Please identify ingredients.
- Assist with setup, take-down, or selling.
Sign-up sheets are in Barnum Hall, or you can email
On Sunday, October 14, the Sunday Morning Circles will participate in a service project to create Blessing Bags for those in need. Please consider donating a few items to help our children help others in the community. Below is a list of items needed. Please note that travel size items are best.
Personal hygiene products: shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, deodorant, comb, razor, lip balm, sunscreen, chap stick
Accessories: scarf, hat, gloves, thermal socks, hand warmers
Necessities: tissues, hand lotion, wet wipes, small first aid kit
Leave donations in the marked basket in Barnum Hall. Thank you in advance! Contact the Office (603-673-1870,
) for questions.
For 110 years the Holiday Fair has been a major fundraiser for
our church. Originally five Milford churches banded together in a cooperative effort and split the profits. The whole shebang was a Unitarian woman's idea! Today Milford churches each hold their own fair on the 1st Saturday of December. UUCM hopes to raise $10,000 this year. Read more about the history of the fair.
Bake Shop (from Linda Higgs)
It isn't too early to be thinking about what homemade goodies you will donate to the Holiday Fair Bakery. Some baked goods can be made now and frozen until the Fair. Jams, jellies, pickles, and other canned goods are popular. Cookies, brownies, sweet breads, yeast breads, and candies are all favorites with our shoppers, as well as "grab-n-go' snack bags for shoppers to munch on the run. Note: Frosted cakes and whole pies do not sell well at the fair. See more about packaging/presentation in the November newsletter. Sign ups will be posted in mid-October.
The Ritzy Boutique sells gently used and new items donated by congregation members and friends. On Sunday, October 21, we'll begin collecting your donations for Ritzy in our red sleigh in Barnum Hall.
Social Action - Helping Others
Every month we need three volunteers to help serve Sunday lunch at the Nashua Soup Kitchen.
When: 2nd Sunday of every month (Next on October 14)
Duties: Setup, simple food prep, serving, cleanup
Who: Adults and youth 12 and older (accompanied by a responsible adult). You can sign up online or contact Marti Kennedy or Meghan Hoye.
Serving Ham, Baked Beans, Cole Slaw and Apple Crisp
In keeping with UUCM's mission to Honor Each, Enrich All, our congregation hosts suppers at UUCM on the 3rd Wednesday of most months. You are invited to join the pool of volunteers who help prepare and serve nutritious meals to the delight of our guests. Please contact Nancy Danzinger, UUCM Community Supper Coordinator, to learn more or join the pool.
UUCM supports SHARE throughout the year in numerous ways. In addition to sharing the plate and collecting food for SHARE, we have special collections every month for specific items that SHARE needs. SHARE is a nonprofit
organization serving the towns of Milford, Amherst, Brookline, and Mont Vernon. SHARE provides food, clothing, and emergency financial assistance
to those in need. For more information, contact Sandy Frades.
Just to be clear, pajama month doesn't mean we can wear pajamas to church every Sunday! It means we will collect new
pajamas for any age or gender or size until the end of October. You can leave your donations in the basket in Barnum Hall labeled SHARE Pajamas.
Please leave contributions in the SHARE basket in Barnum Hall. This month's needs: Canned ham, canned meats, Ravioli & Beefaroni and side dishes
(seasoned pasta mix, Hamburger Helper, etc.).
The Leadership and Member Directories were updated to reflect the new leadership and new members. Now that the newsletter is public on the website and no personal contact info is provided, it is especially important that you make sure all your info is correct in the directories. Look for the directories online at https://uucm.org/members/keep-in-touch/directories/. Let Jamie know if you need to update your email address, phone number, or other information (firstname.lastname@example.org or 603-673-1870).
Please observe UUCM's Food Allergen and Alcohol policies on the
Weekdays before 6pm and Saturdays before 5pm: Park only behind the church or in the circular driveway in front (and NOT in front of the Garden Door). For more parking information (including a printable map),