WEDNESDAY, December 30, 2020
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Sunday, January 3, at 10 am,
Zoom Service,
led by Rev. Sue Browning,
"Imagining 2021"
It's hard not to look forward to 2021 with hope. What lessons will we take forward from the past year? What might we need to let go of in order to enter the new year with hope? Join this Zoom service with Rev. Sue Browning as together we imagine the year to come.

Join us by clicking the Zoom link here on Sunday, January 3 at 10 am, immediately followed by coffee hour. Please sign in by 9:50 am so we can begin the service promptly at 10 am.

If you have a joy or sorrow for the January 3 service, please share it during the discussion or if you're not planning to attend, email the UUCR office at UUCR email by Friday, January 1 at noon.
Join Us for Coffee Hour on Sunday!
Come join us for a time to see and talk to one another. It's the next best thing to being there!

Click on the Coffee Hour Zoom Link at 11:00 am this Sunday, January 3.

Vida Morley, Jan 1
Ralph Dolinger, Jan 2
Melinda Lippincott, Jan 3
Dianne Turpin, Jan 4
Brad Hardin, Jan 10
Judy Graham, Jan 14
Caren Samuels, Jan 18
Al Mathwich, Jan 20
Clark Bjorke, Jan 22
Zoe Perry, Jan 29

We want to help celebrate your birthday! If we didn't include your January birthday, please contact Darlene Wiggers at UUCR email


Sunday, January 10
Rev. Sue Browning, Zoom
Service, "Lessons from
Dr. Seuss"

Sunday, January 17
Rev. Sue Browning, Zoom Service, "Gearing Up for
a Big Week"
Minister's Column
2020 in Perspective
This Christmas our family took a while to work out holiday plans that felt safe. We tracked the weather closely and had honest conversations about the nature of our individual contacts. Ultimately, we concluded an outside visit for a few hours on Christmas Day could work.

The day was cold, but at least the rain from the prior day had stopped. We had a fire burning in an old fire pit for the whole visit. We opened presents outside. We ate lasagna from plates we held on our laps (sitting at a table felt too close). And, we ended the short gathering at the agreed upon time.

It was an odd day, at least as measured by past Christmas Days, and yet something felt "not that unusual" about our outside, socially-distanced 2020 Christmas. The day was just one more adaptation in a year of many adaptations, and we appreciated the brief visit.

I hear from many a wish to just move forward from 2020; to just get this year behind us. I get that. It has been a year of deep challenge, loss, and disruption. While 2020 will shortly be in the past, we know for 2021 we will need to continue to be careful and adapt.

I do hope that as we each welcome in 2021, we take time to reflect on 2020. What have we learned? What have we appreciated? I know I end the year grateful for this community, and the many ways everyone has generously cared for one another this past year. I end the year grateful for those who have worked patiently with me and with one another as we’ve figured out how to "do" church differently. I end the year grateful for short Christmas visits, even if my clothes (even after washing) still smell a bit smokey!

I have confidence we’ll work through these next months together, one step at a time, one more adaptation at a time.

Happy New Year,

Rev. Sue
Welcome to Our New Office Administrator
From Jan: I’m sad to say that my last day of being Office Administrator of UUCR will be on December 31, but I’m happy to share that I’m heading off on a great adventure to travel the U.S. in my converted van with Carli the cat. We are going to see all the great things this country has to offer, spend lots of time at the beach and see as many National Parks as possible as well as off-the-beaten-path gems. It has been a great honor to be here with you at UUCR doing this work.  Darlene Wiggers (see below) will be taking over as Office Administrator. She has been learning the ins and outs of the job for the last few weeks and will hit the ground running when I leave. I’m sure you will come to appreciate her as much as I have. I hope to see you all on Zoom and feel free to follow my adventures on Facebook.

Jan Whitney
From Darlene: I've been told I have big shoes to fill and I will try my best to do so. Jan has been an excellent teacher and has written an office administrator guidebook to refer to. I grew up in the country in Sinking Valley, PA, where my family grew or harvested from the surrounding woods, farms and orchards for most of our food.  I attended Penn State and received a bachelor’s degree in general agriculture with a focus in animal sciences (animal behavior/welfare) and had almost completed my doctorate at Texas Tech with an animal science major (animal welfare and behavior) and a range, wildlife, fisheries management minor. I have worked extensively in hands-on, academic, research and other areas of agricultural management and production including certified organic and humanely-raised operations. Since leaving the agricultural field due to a work-related injury, my work has been part-time and of an office administrative nature. This work has included experience in QuickBooks and other programs/systems, procedures and equipment such as those used here at UUCR. I have lived in the area since 2006 and own a home in Millington, where I live with my two cats. Please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of any help to you.

Darlene L. Wiggers
From UUCR's Social Concerns/Social Justice Committee
MLK Annual Breakfast Celebration, "We're All in this Together"

Despite the challenges of gathering to celebrate, we are pleased to announce that this Kent County tradition will continue....virtually on January 18 with Bishop Ronald T. Fisher of Faith Life Church as the keynote speaker (details in future weeks). Even though the event is free, we're reaching out to you to consider being a sponsor to support the many organizations that continue to serve in the face of unprecedented need, including Good Neighbor Fund, The Samaritan Group (winter shelter), The Community Food Pantry, as well as the Vincent Hynson Scholarship Fund at Washington College. Donations can be sent to the MLK, Jr. Breakfast c/o CVMA, P.O. Box 227, Chestertown, 21620, checks payable to Chester Valley Ministers' Association. Contact Lynn Dolinger if you have any questions, or 215-872-5773.

Covid Vaccinations Are Coming!

UUCR is working with other congregations in Kent County to assist with outreach in getting our elderly vaccinated, which is most of our congregation! While details are not firmed up yet, according to the Health Department, residents who are 65+ are prioritized for vaccinations possibly starting the end of January. However, an on-line application for scheduling is required. We are forming a team at UUCR to assist with this process. If you need assistance or want to help, please contact the church office by UUCR email or by UUCR phone at

Holiday Sharing Gratitude

The Social Concerns/Social Justice Committee wants to share a letter of appreciation sent to our congregation for its generosity in this difficult holiday season. "Your help and thoughtful contributions assisted the Department of Social Services in distributing toys, clothes, gift cards and Christmas dinner to those Kent County families in need. It is through the involvement of community members such as yourself that we are able to accomplish this year after year." You truly touched the hearts of many with your generosity and helped to bring a glimmer of hope for the future.  
From the Green Sanctuary Committee
Annual Environmental Book Read
Join the Green Sanctuary in our annual environmental book read! We will be reading As Long As Grass Grows by Dina Gilio-Whitaker and discussing it in February, most likely on Zoom! This book is available on Amazon new or used as well as at the library. BookPlate is another source that is always accommodating. Happy reading and I hope to see you in February.

“Through the unique lens of “Indigenized environmental justice,” Indigenous researcher and activist Dina Gilio-Whitaker explores the fraught history of treaty violations, struggles for food and water security, and protection of sacred sites, while highlighting the important leadership of Indigenous women in this centuries-long struggle. As Long As Grass Grows gives readers an accessible history of Indigenous resistance to government and corporate incursions on their lands and offers new approaches to environmental justice activism and policy.

Throughout 2016, the Standing Rock protest put a national spotlight on Indigenous activists, but it also underscored how little Americans know about the longtime historical tensions between Native peoples and the mainstream environmental movement. Ultimately, she argues, modern environmentalists must look to the history of Indigenous resistance for wisdom and inspiration in our common fight for a just and sustainable future.”

Kim Agee
Shopping Online?
Your Purchases Can Help UUCR!
Go to the link on the UUCR webpage here and enter either Amazon or IGive to make your purchases; .05% of what you spend will end up in UUCR’s coffers. Yes, it’s only a half-cent on the dollar, but these “ha’pennies” turn into dollars and then into scores of dollars.

Happy shopping!
UUCR on Facebook

Unitarian Universalists of the Chester River now has two Facebook pages. Our original UUCR Facebook Page now has a new look. Our UUCR Facebook Forum is the new more personal space.

Click here to for more information about our Facebook pages.
Pastoral Care & Connection
We are here for you!  We will focus on staying directly connected with our members and friends, especially those who may need assistance or support. The caring teams from our congregation is staying in touch, but if you need to reach out, please be in touch with any of the contacts below to stay connected (and see additional contacts below for RE families).
Please know your congregation is here. We can help you find connections. Please don't hesitate to reach out and let us know what is helpful for you in this time. 

Rev. Sue Browning, and the Pastoral Care Associates: Kevin Brien, Gayle Folger, Nancy Holland, and Vida Morley
or for more information, contact:
Darlene Wiggers (Office) p: 410-778-3440 | e:
Unitarian Universalists of the Chester River 914 Gateway Drive, Chestertown, MD 21620
Phone: (410) 778-3440