August 30 - September 5, 2018
The CommUUnicator
The Weekly Newsletter of
The Unitarian Society of Germantown
Building Beloved Community

THIS WEEK: We complete our second week of helping to host PIHN families, hear a sermon from a Roman Catholic Woman Priest, and welcome back Mark Daugherty and his music. We also look forward to our annual Water Ceremony Ingathering Celebration, the start of the new church year, and beginning work on a new elevator! WooHoo!
In Worship, 10:30am
A Lesson from the Edge
Eileen DiFranco
Learn how ordinary people can empower each other to build a new world in uncertain times.

Ordained a Roman Catholic Woman Priest in 2006, Eileen is a lifetime resident of Philadelphia and a graduate of the Lutheran Theological Seminary of Philadelphia. She currently co-pastors the Community of St. Mary Magdalene in Drexel Hill, PA and Palmyra, NJ. Eileen is a registered nurse who worked for the School District of Philadelphia for 25 years. She recently published her first book, "How To Keep Your Parish Alive."
In Child Spiritual Development
Last Sunday was the final Summer CSD program. This Labor Day Sunday, September 2, children will be with their families and friends in the Sanctuary during the Worship Service. The following Sunday, September 9, the children also are in the Sanctuary for the celebration of In Gathering. Most of the CSD programs for the Year begin on September 16.

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. 
A New Year in CSD!
Parents, save the date: Our Regular Church Year program for Children's Spiritual Development (CSD) starts Sunday September 16 - except for Coming of Age, which will begin on September 23. Our Sunday children's program philosophy is steeped in UU values, child-centered learning and fun! Our classes are facilitated by volunteers, many of whom are also parents at USG. If you'd like to be involved this year, we still have openings! Contact Ryan Hurd at . And stay tuned for registration details.

Parent-Teacher Meet & Greet:
September 16, in the Edna Jones Room upstairs, following the service

Classes will be grouped as follows:
Grades Pre-K - K
Grades 1-3
Grades 4-6
Grades 7-8 OWL -  Our Whole Lives Sex Ed Program   (follow link for details)
Grades 9-10  COA - Coming of Age   Starts Sept. 23 (follow link for details)
Grades 9-12  Youth Group  (follow link for details)

NOTE to Parents with youth in grades 7-10. Hopefully you received an email from us about the OWL and COA programs. If you did not, please contact Ryan at . If you have not responded to an email about these programs, please let us know if your youth will be participating so that we can plan. Thank you!  Link
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.

There is a continued urgent need for food for our neighbors. Drop off nonperishable food items to the designated carts in the Kitchen for delivery to St. Vincent's Food Pantry.
Coffee Hour
After the Worship Service
Enjoy refreshments, compliments of the Welcoming Committee.

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

Not sure if you'd like Small Group Ministry? Attend a special sample one at 12:00pm in the Daskam Room.

At 12:00pm, attend the  Ending Racism Committee meeting in Sullivan Chapel.

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.
USG's In-Gathering Water Ceremony Celebration!
Sunday, September 9, 10:30am

Raising our Principles Together :
For our Ingathering Water Ceremony we begin the church year anew by celebrating our commitment to our UU Principles. Come help us celebrate new, beautiful sanctuary banners , which help us affirm and promote “the inherent dignity and worth of every person”, and “justice, equity and compassion in human relations.” Bring water from a special place from your summer - including your home. Together in Beloved Community we are empowered to more fully live out our values. 
Afterwards we will have a potluck lunch . Please bring a dish to share. If you are able to assist with either setup or cleanup for the potluck, please contact Gloria at .
Movie Event
Social Justice Movie of the Month:
“It’s STILL Elementary”
Monday, September 10, 2018
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
It’s STILL Elementary  presents a moving story about the power to ignite positive social change through documentary film and grassroots organizing. It examines the incredible impact of  It’s Elementary—Talking About Gay Issues in School  over the last decade, and follows up with teachers and students featured in the first film to see how lessons about LGBT people changed their lives.
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 .

Book Swap Brunch
Saturday, September 8 from 10:00am to noon
Join Jenn, Zoe, and Janet at the Leiby home in Plymouth Meeting. Talk about books and enjoy a light brunch. Room for 7 more adults. Cost is $20 each for adult. Interested? Contact Kay Weiser .

We are thrilled to be joining the network of local area churches who belong to POWER. POWER is an interfaith organization committed to building communities of opportunity that work for all. It represents over 50 congregations throughout Southeastern and Central Pennsylvania. For more information regarding USG's involvement in POWER, please contact Lois Murphy and Dev Howerton, our Social Justice Council Co-Chairs at

Education Campaign
Lancaster, PA (site TBD)
September 30th 4-6pm
Groundbreaking for elevator with CC
Ground Breaking for the Elevator
Ground breaking took place this week and we've started building the elevator addition. This will take several months with completion expected towards the end of February, 2019. 

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. The area in the grove that's now fenced in is a hard hat area and access is limited to the construction workers. The work begins! 

Pictured L to R: Bill Blasdel, Building & Grounds co-chair; Tom Ott, past Board president; Rev. Kent Matthies, Senior Minister; Jenn Leiby, current Board president; Carolyn Cotton, Elevator Committee member; Bill Dowdall, Elevator Committee co-chair.
Archives Committee Forming
Thursday, September 13, 3:00-4:30pm
Calling all members who enjoy organizing and cataloguing as well as those who enjoy watching history emerge in an ordered view of the past. USG has a long and distinguished past, and our archives have the beginnings of order. But there is much work to be done. We plan to catalog our holdings, develop a church-wide archives policy, deal with media conversion issues, and create exhibits from time to time.

Please join us for this initial meeting in the Committee Room if you can. Notify co-chairs Susan Bockius ( ; 215-247-4249) or Kay Weiser ( ; 215-527-3179) of your interest and/or plan to attend.
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 for Open SGMs continue this Sunday.
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.
What's Going On in Your Village?
Since the USG Village program began a year ago, Villages have been doing a tremendous job providing refreshments and hospitality for Fellowship Hour. We would like to learn about and share other experiences people are having with their Villages. If your Village has had a social event, or responded to a Caring need as a Village, or car pooled, etc., please share your experience with the Welcoming team at . Thanks!
Planning to Attend Rev. Connie Simon's Installation in Cincinnati?
The First Unitarian Church of Cincinnati is working hard on arrangements for Rev. Connie Simon's Installation on Sunday, October 28 4-6pm. For more details, click here .

If you are interested in going with a group, either by car or chartered bus, please contact Gloria Guldager in the office at or Treva Burger .

Whether you go with a group or by yourself, if you do plan to attend, please contact Gloria , as Cincinnati needs the count of attendees.
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.
Thank You, Villagers!
Thank you so much to all who participate! If you are willing to coordinate Fellowship Hour for your Village, please let Treva Burger, know. Below is the schedule for Fellowship Hour Hosting in September.
  • September 2 - Welcoming Committee
  • September 9 - Congregational Potluck
  • September 16 - Village 6
  • September 23 - Village 7
  • September 30 - Village 8
Greater Philly UU Cluster Events
September 22, 9:30 am - 4:00 pm
First Unitarian Church of Wilmington, DE

Join other UU congregations in the Central East Region for a day of networking, learning, and connecting:
- Learn how to use social media to advance your community
- Discover new ways to encourage volunteerism in your congregation
- Invigorate your church's social justice programs
- Find out about new requirements for Welcoming Congregations
- Linkage: Where we are and how we got here

Paula Cole Jones will be MCing the event. Check out the website (see below) for info on the other workshop presenters, including Pat Infante, our CER primary contact, who will be talking about encouraging volunteerism in your congregation.

Lunch provided. All are welcome.

Registration: For planning purposes, please register by September 17, at
$10 registration fee requested (waivers available).
Childcare available by RSVP only.
Walk-ins welcome.

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. Please note that some groups are now on summer hiatus and thus not listed below. Check back in September to see what's new!

20's & 30's SGM Group - Second Thursday, September 13, 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.  (A big shout-out to this group, who has come forward with many volunteers to host PIHN families!)

Book Group on Friday Morning - Will resume its regular Third Friday, 10:30am, discussions September 21 at Cathedral Village. If interested in joining, please contact Barbara Dowdall. The 2017-2018 Book List is posted on> About> Affinity Groups> Book Group . In late August, the 2018-2019 List will be posted.

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

Caregiver Support Group - Second Friday, September 14, 11:00am - 1:00pm. At USG. Contact Maura Gallagher .

EarthSpirit Circle . First Monday, except for holiday weekends: (e.g., September 10). Next meeting September 10 , 7:00pm. At USG. Contact Donya Coldwell at .

ERC (Ending Racism Committee) - First Sunday, September 2, 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 (please note summer start time), 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 September 5, 1:30 - 3:00pm, off-site. (Usually First Wednesday). Contact Margaret Thompson .

Open Small Group Ministry - Second Sunday, September 9, 12:00pm, Daskam Room at USG. This group is available to people who want to try out Small Group Ministry or attend occasionally. For more information, contact Mark B, , or just show up.

UU-101 - Usually t hird 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
We relay thanks from...

... Beverly Gross Spencer , who wants to let the USG community know that she and Tim can not fully express their gratitude for the meals prepared with love and the visits that filled their home with laughter in the weeks following Bev’s surgery. Her healing continues and Bev and Tim look forward to seeing everyone in the fall. They feel fortunate to be part of such a caring community.
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