Weekly E-News
September 6, 2018
Sunday Worship in September: Vision
Service at 10:30 am Sundays in the Miller Sanctuary

September 9th is a special Sunday. We will celebrate our annual Water Communion, welcome new members, and gather after the service in Hobart Hall for a potluck lunch. This Sunday, bring a small container of water (see below) and your favorite dish to share. Gluten-free and dairy-free recipes appreciated! Anyone interested in joining our congregation can contact  MemberServices@UUCFM.org  for details. Love. Grow. Serve.

The Water Communion was  first used at a Unitarian Universalist worship service in the 1980s . Many UU congregations now hold a Water Communion once a year, often at the beginning of the new church year (September). Members bring to the service a small amount of water from a place that is special to them. During the appointed time in the service, people one by one pour their water together into a large bowl. As the water is added, the person who brought it tells why this water is special to them. The combined water is symbolic of our shared faith coming from many different sources. It is then blessed by the congregation, and sometimes is used as the congregation's "holy water" in child dedication ceremonies and similar events.
Teacher Appreciation Sunday Service, September 23 rd
UUCFM is honoring our local teachers – public, private, home schoolers, retired.  Please invite your friends and neighbors who are/have been teachers to our September 23 rd  Sunday Service. All are welcome! The Service will be honoring those who have/are dedicated/ing their careers to teaching our children and grandchildren. 
Community Sharing in September: LIFE (Lee Interfaith for Empowerment)
LIFE is a congregation-based community organization that examines the needs and interests of our community for the result of doing justice. Over the years, LIFE has examined and implemented more fair policies on the topics of increasing the use of civil citations, created a Children's Service Counsel, re-opened and solving more unsolved murder cases and adopted a fair chance hiring policy (also known as "banning the box" where previously jailed/felonized individuals would immediately be eliminated in the job application process.) 

LIFE for Justice, Justice for LIFE!
Humanist Forum
The Humanist Forum meets every Sunday at 9:15 am in Hobart Hall. All are welcome to attend.
Coffee Hour
Sunday's Coffee Hour happens after church every week and is provided by volunteers from the Women's Circle on the first Sunday, CUUPS on the second Sunday, Humanist Forum on the third Sunday, Men's Group on the fourth Sunday and if there is a fifth Sunday, it is All Church.  Any donations of food, snacks or cash are welcome. 

BURN, our High School Youth Group meets on Sundays at noon in Room 4. All youth, ages 14-18, are welcome! Contact Director of Religious Education, Jenn Blosser: dre@uucfm.org
IGNITE , our junior youth group for ages 10-13, meets weekly from 12-1 pm in Room 3. Come join us for community, conversation, and finding your call to action! Questions about the group? Reach out to Stephanie Hoffman:  stephgator7@yahoo.com
SPARK is now forming! Exclusively for children ages five to nine, Spark will meet weekly from 12-1 in Room 2 to explore Unitarian Universalism and learn more about our church and each other. 
Hearing Loop Assistive Listening System
A Hearing Loop system is now available in the Sanctuary to assist those with hearing loss to hear more clearly during services. A Hearing Loop is an assistive listening system that transmits sound directly into one’s hearing aids or cochlear implants rather than depending on sound coming from the loudspeakers. To receive the Loop signal and hear more clearly, you will need to manually activate your T-coil or “telephone” setting on your hearing aid or cochlear implant. If you don’t know if you have a T-coil or whether yours is properly programmed, consult with your audiologist or hearing aid professional. If you don’t wear hearing aids, ask to use a Loop receiver to receive the sound. If you have further questions about Looping, please contact the installation company, Complete Hearing Solutions at

www.CompleteHearingSolutions.org or call 727-260-3488.
Staff and Board News
From the Minister
This Sunday we gather together in community to celebrate our Water Communion. Water is symbolically a reminder of the "More-Than" upon which we rely for sustenance. In addition, we quite literally cannot survive without it.  Each of you are invited to bring a sample of water from a sacred place (whether from travels or from your tap or local waterway). During a ceremony you will be asked to offer your waters. We will bless the water and bless our gathering together. In addition, we welcome new members of the congregation and offer our blessings and support to new team leaders in our Interfaith Justice Ministry, LIFE.

Let us gather this special Sunday to widen our vision of what is possible as we unite in our mission to love, grow, and serve. This Sunday and each day.  

Rev. Allison Farnum
Music Notes

The UUCFM Choir  rehearses most Wednesday nights from 6:45-8:15 pm, and on Sunday mornings from 9-10 am in the sanctuary. It's free and there are no auditions. Come join us in singing!

The UUCFM Band  rehearses most Wednesday nights from 6:00-6:45 pm, and on Sunday mornings from 9-10 am in the Sanctuary. If you would like to play your instrument during a Sunday service, please email me to coordinate the details.

 On September 19th we will meet in Room 1 due to the Yom Kippur Celebration in the Sanctuary and Hobart Hall . Come join us in making music together!

Suellen Kipp, Director of Music
Religious Education News

Our Whole Lives (OWL) Sexuality Education for Grades 7 - 9 registration is now open!
This program only has 15 spaces, so early registration is important! Please click here to register your youth now:  https://goo.gl/forms/vfIfXYE55iVzfBXU2

If you are unfamiliar, OWL is a comprehensive sexuality education program divided into different age levels from kindergartners to adults. Such education is an important offering for our community within and without the church as it fulfills a need which is greatly lacking in our current school system. 

The Parent/Guardian Orientation will be on Sunday, September 9th from 12 - 2 pm in Classroom 7 . Classes begin on Sunday, September 16th and continue until Sunday, March 24th (with some Sundays excluded for holidays). Classes run from 12:30 - 2:00 pm. 

Registration costs $75 per youth which is due at the Parent/Guardian Orientation.  Please bring cash or a check made out to UUCFM. Thank you.

Jenn Blosser
From the Office

Member Update Information
If you are a member or contributing friend and you've moved, or changed your email or phone, please let the church office know. The easiest way to do this is to fill out a connection card and check off the box called "Change of Contact Info."

You can also call or email the office anytime. 239-561-2700 or uuchurch@uucfm.org . If you are a member and would like an updated member directory sent to you via email in pdf, please let me know. Per our UUCFM policy, you must be a member or have contributing friend status to receive a directory. I can also send you last year's photo directory if you don't have it.

Jill Carville, Office Manager
UUCFM Special Events
Pachamama Alliance Game Changer Gathering
Our Toxic Water: Hacking at the Root Causes for the Long Haul
with Rae Ann Wessel
Thursday, September 6th
6:30 pm Potluck desserts
Meet our esteemed guest speaker, Rae Ann Wessel. Rae Ann is a limnologist and marine scientist with 40 years of experience working in corporate, government, private and nonprofit sectors in South Florida.  For the past 12 years she's served as the Natural Resource Policy Director for SCCF, the  Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation.  Her policy, advocacy and outreach work brings sound scientific grounding to policy development, protection and restoration of water resources, critical habitats, land management, and fish and wildlife conservation at the local, regional, statewide and federal policy levels.

Rae Ann has been actively engaged in Everglades and Caloosahatchee restoration issues for the past 24 years. In that time, she has been researching and identifying critical Caloosahatchee issues and building support for sustainable solutions. She is involved in oxbow research, historical documentation and education projects and guides river tours on the Caloosahatchee and its estuary.

Rae Ann serves as a: Commission appointee to the Conservation 2020 Conservation Lands Acquisition and Stewardship Committee (CLASAC) and Lee County Historic Preservation Board. She is a board member for the Everglades Coalition, representative to the Environmental Advisory Council for the Everglades Foundation, past appointee to Lee County's Local Planning Agency and a 1992 graduate of Leadership Lee County.

Mark your Calendar for our next  Awakening the Dreamer Symposium at FGCU o n September 22nd, followed by  Peace Day in the Park September 23rd.  
Click here   for more information and to register for this life changing event!
The FUUn BUUnch
4521 Del Prado Blvd
Cape Coral, Fl
Saturday, SEPTEMBER 29th
6:00 pm


From College Parkway in FORT MYERS, proceed west over the bridge to Cape Coral. Continue on Cape Coral Parkway to Del Prado Blvd. Make a right onto Del Prado Blvd. Continue through the first light, over the canal, through the second light to the SIAM HUT. 

From Cape Coral Blvd and points east and south in Cape Coral, drive on Cape Coral Blvd to Del Prado Blvd. Turn left onto Del Prado and c ontinue through the first light, over the canal, through the second light to the SIAM HUT. 

From North of Cape Coral Blvd, find your way to Del Prado and proceed south toward Cape Coral Blvd. The SIAM HUT will be on your left.
Reflections on Hurricane Irma - Art Quilters Unlimited Exhibit
Miller Sanctuary Narthex
August 6-September 29, 2018

Art quilters create fine art wall hangings based on their experiences, imagery and ideas, rather than on traditional patterns. Art Quilters Unlimited is a group of fiber artists interested in expanding their knowledge and pushing the boundaries of their creativity. Our very own, Rev. Margaret L. Beard is a member of this group!

For more information, please contact Pam Richardson, Exhibition Committee Chair at pjrichfiberart@comcast.net .
To confirm access to the exhibit, please call the Church Office at (239) 561-2700. For more info, check out the public event page here .
Save the Date: Boycott Wendy's
Join the Coalition of Immokalee Workers in front of the Wendy's at  14890 6-Mile Cypress Pkwy , Fort Myers, FL 33912 , Saturday, September 22 starting at 4:15 pm. Here is the  Facebook event  where you all can get updated / mark that you're attending! Folks can contact Organizer Alex Schelle at 239-255-8418,  alex@allianceforfairfood.org
UU Women's Retreat
Celebrating Sacred Places

9th Annual Florida Unitarian Universalist
Women’s Retreat
April 5-7, 2019

DaySpring Episcopal Conference Center Ellenton Flo The retreat begins Friday at 5:00pm and ends Sunday.
DaySpring Conference Center is conveniently located off I-75 just north of Sarasota on Florida’s West Coast. The beautiful campus nestled under ancient oaks and located on a cove of the Manatee River offers a serene setting for our annual retreat. Take a look.

$220 per person covers expenses for a semi-private room and meals. 8 women share a cozy cottage with 4 bedrooms and 4 baths, a screened porch and common area. A limited number of single rooms are available at $292 each.

$5 Discounts Available for Registration before September 15, 2018.

A non-refundable deposit of $15 for a semi-private room or $25 for a private room will reserve your place. Final payment is due January 15, 2019. Come join us for an enriching and memorable weekend. Any questions? Contact Helen Leddy helen.leddy@gmail.com
UUCFM Classes & Groups
Book Study
Join us at Book Study on Wednesdays at 1:00 pm. We are reading the book  Sapiens  by Yuval Noah Harari. Come having read the first few chapters. We meet in the Church Library.

From Amazon.com:
"One hundred thousand years ago, at least six different species of humans inhabited Earth. Yet today there is only one—homo sapiens. What happened to the others? And what may happen to us?
Most books about the history of humanity pursue either a historical or a biological approach, but Dr. Yuval Noah Harari breaks the mold with this highly original book that begins about 70,000 years ago with the appearance of modern cognition. From examining the role evolving humans have played in the global ecosystem to charting the rise of empires, Sapiens integrates history and science to reconsider accepted narratives, connect past developments with contemporary concerns, and examine specific events within the context of larger ideas.
Dr. Harari also compels us to look ahead, because over the last few decades humans have begun to bend laws of natural selection that have governed life for the past four billion years. We are acquiring the ability to design not only the world around us, but also ourselves. Where is this leading us, and what do we want to become?"
Mindfulness Meditation
Join us on Monday evenings to explore the very simple and satisfying practices of mindfulness and meditation. You don’t need experience with meditation, nor do you have to be a Buddhist. Do please bring an intention to quiet the mind and the body in a supportive group of UU members and friends with a similar intention - people who want to carry mindfulness into their daily lives. 
We meet Mondays from 6:30-8:00p in the Sanctuary. If you have any questions, please contact Gary Robbins at  pachamamaelder@gmail.com .
Rissho Kosei-kai Buddhist Group
The Rissho Kosei-kai Buddhist group meets Sundays in Room 1. All are welcome to join us. We have a new meeting time- 2:00-4:00 pm.
UUCFM Weekly Activities
Community Wednesday  

From the Chef
I hope everyone has had some time out or a vacation this summer. We are now moving forward to another season. I have had inquiries as to when Wednesday dinners maybe starting again. We have a community potluck coming up on September 9th which will take us into late September, a good time to regroup. When I say regroup I would like input as to who will attend, do you want every other week,etc. I will as always keep meals as affordable as can be. Wednesday dinners seemed to bring the best conversations to the table and there are many! Your feedback is important. Please feel free to contact me. Recipes are only as good as what ya put into it. Please let me know your thoughts.

Joy Purcell

Activities for September:

6:00-6:45        Band Rehearsal in Sanctuary (Sept 19 Room 1)
6:45-8:00        Choir Rehearsal in Sanctuary (Sept 19 Room 1)

Community Dinners are on hiatus. Stay tuned for an announcement stating when they will resume. Rehearsals and Events will continue through summer.
Social Justice
Preventing Youth Violence: United Way Collaborative with UUCFM
UUCFM, in collaboration with United Way of Lee County, is excited to announce the launch of the Preventing Youth Violence: United Way Collaborative (PYV), a community funding initiative to encourage the youth of Lee County and SW Florida to develop and conduct initiatives that will reduce youth violence and the risk factors that contribute to it. We are taking this action in support of the students at Douglas High School in Parkland FL and all our students who are victims of youth violence.

Modeled on the STRYVE vision of the CDC, the PYV collaborative is a youth-based funding vehicle where multiple funding sources leverage their impact on SW Florida youth violence prevention. PYV focuses on grants to local youth-centric organizations or communities who propose youth violence prevention initiatives with clear and measurable objectives based on evidence of impact on victimization, perpetration, and risk or protective factors for youth violence.

Youth violence is a leading cause of death and nonfatal injuries in the United States. Homicide is the second leading cause of death among persons aged 10 to 24 years in Lee County. The majority of these homicides are from firearm violence. In 2016, 84% of homicides in ages 10 – 24 in Lee County were due to firearms discharge.

PYV will foster strategies and approaches intended to work in combination and to reinforce each other to prevent youth violence in a comprehensive and long-term way, such as:

Promoting family environments that support healthy development
Providing quality education early in life
Strengthening youth’s skills
Connecting youth to caring adults and activities
Creating protective community environments
Intervening to lessen harms and prevent future risk.
While research has demonstrated the preventive effects of many youth skill development programs to be important, approaches addressing relationships with parents, peers, and other caring adults as well as approaches that influence school and community environments are equally important to have the greatest public health impact.

A PYV review committee will be established based on community inputs; historically marginalized groups and student representation will be integral to the make-up of the committee. Through the United Way offices, proposals will be accepted based on established criteria focusing on strategies and approaches as outlined above. All grant applications will require matching funds by sponsoring organizations. Once awarded, grant recipients will be expected to document the effectiveness of their initiative. All accepted initiatives will require youth participation throughout the course of the initiative period. Completed initiatives will be presented by the grantees to community gatherings for acknowledgement and subsequent actions.

Consistent with our social justice history, UUCFM is expanding its community outreach through this prideful initiative, made possible by the love and generosity of our congregation. The Board of Trustees voted to fund this United Way collaborative with an amount of $25,000 (out of the proceeds from the sale of our cell tower lease) as an investment in the safety of our youth and in solidarity with those in the “March for Our Lives” movement. Other organizations in SW Florida will be approached to expand the initial UUCFM funding to help prevent youth violence. The PYV is intended to be an ongoing endeavor with UUCFM being at the center of the collaborative’s community impact. Please join the Outreach Ministry in celebrating UUCFM’s community engagement activism.

Holley Rauen & Gary Robbins, Outreach Ministry Team Leaders
New Social Justice T-Shirts are Here!
The new Social Justice T-shirts still have the same message but are a brighter green, a lighter material, and have a V neck. These are changes to make them cooler for you in the face of global warming. We suggest wearing them at activities, gatherings and demonstrations where we want it known that we are from UUCFM. They are on sale at the Social Justice Table in Hobart Hall. The good news is the price did not change. They are still $20. Stop by the Social Justice table during coffee hour and take a look.
Changes to the Food Pantry re: Donations
The support that UUCFM has shown to our pantry over the years is greatly appreciated and along with other coalition members' support it has helped the South Fort Myers Food Pantry (FMFP) to feed 23,000 people in need during 2017. The Harry Chapin Food Bank is vital to our mission, to feed the needy of South Fort Myers, at a very modest cost. They are however, making some changes at Harry Chapin.

In the past, members of our congregation have financially supported the pantry by donating directly to the pantry or by sending checks to the Harry Chapin Food Bank with the stipulation the funds were to support the SFMFP. The Food Bank would then place the funds in a "Designated Grant" account for our use to purchase food. They are eliminating these accounts. As of August 1, 2018 any checks they receive in support of one particular pantry will be returned to the sender. Therefore, our pantry is requesting that any monetary donations be sent directly to and made out to:

   The South Fort Myers Food Pantry

If you feel strongly about your donation being only for food and not for operating expenses, write "for food only" on the memo line. The pantry relies on the support of the coalition churches for the funds and the volunteers needed. There are no paid positions and it takes hundreds of volunteer hours and thousands of dollars each month to accomplish our mission. If you have questions call Fran Rose and leave a message at 617-750-0470 and I will return your call.  
Big things are happening! We asked the commission to form a children's service council and while they are still refusing to even allow it on the ballot- they have increased the budget for children's services by $1.7 million. Should this budget pass we will be able to celebrate dental care for thousands of more children as well as hundreds of children getting access to full day preschool. It is still not a victory but it is a sign that work for justice is never done in vain. 

If you would like to order a LIFE t-shirt you can do so at  https://www.customink.com/g/bxr0-00bf-84j3 .  Shirts can be worn out and about and at community events.

2018-2019 Dates. See below for the newly announced dates for the upcoming year.

Annual Assembly
Monday, October 29, 2018

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Nehemiah Action
Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Tuesday, May 14, 2019 Community Forum

LIFE members were invited to a community forum to help the county health department decide on a focus for the upcoming few years. If you wish to participate see below:

What: Department of Health in Lee County Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) Town Hall Meeting
When: July 2, 2018
Time: 6:30p – 8:30p
Where: Department of Health Lee County
Address:  83 Pondella Road

Caring News
Carolyn Maron Memorial Service
We are sad to announce that in the early hours of Monday, August 27th, Carolyn June (Townsend) Maron, passed on with what looked like a very silvery full moon to light her way. She was in her 86th year, and just a few months short of our 65-year anniversary. She was diagnosed with Early Alzheimer’s disease 11 year ago, and spent the past 9 years at the skilled nursing facility at Shell Point. A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, September 8th at 2:00 pm in the Sanctuary. Thank you all for your support.

Don Maron
Great News!
Classrooms 1, 2, and 3 have been painted are are looking refreshed with clean windows! Our thanks go out to the RE children and their parents and friends for helping to paint! Also helping were John Worster, Linda Johnson, Jane Richey, Roy Green, Ryan Callahan, and Jimmy and Bill from the SWFL Gay Chorus. Painting supplies and pizza were donated by our generous Jen Smith. Thank you all!

Mary Alice Pierce & Dorothy Van Howe, Ops Team
Looking Back
This is a photo circa 1997. It is the start of the building of Classrooms 6 & 7.
Member to Member
Do you have something to offer, trade, or sell? Are you looking for something? Free ad space here for personal items only. Will run ad for 4 weeks. Email  uuchurch@uucfm.org
Our Greater Community
If you are a UUCFM Community Sharing Partner, a regular Facility User, or have UU related news to share, you are welcome to submit announcements for publication in our Greater Community section of the newsletter. Please send announcements in by Wednesday for publication in the Thursday E-news.
What's That Hut For?

Beginning five days after  Yom Kippur , Sukkot is named after the booths or huts (sukkot in Hebrew) in which Jews are supposed to dwell during this week-long celebration. According to rabbinic tradition, these flimsy sukkot represent the huts in which the Israelites dwelt during their 40 years of wandering in the desert after escaping from slavery in Egypt. The festival of Sukkot is one of the three great  pilgrimage festivals  of the Jewish year. Sukkot is often referred to as “The Harvest Festival.” And much of the imagery and ritual of the holiday revolves around rejoicing and thanking God for the completed harvest. The sukkah represents the huts that farmers would live in during the last hectic period of harvest before the coming of the winter rains. As is the case with other festivals whose origins may not have been Jewish, the Bible reinterpreted the festival to imbue it with a specific Jewish meaning. In this manner, Sukkot came to commemorate the wanderings of the Israelites in the desert after the revelation at Mount Sinai, with the huts representing the temporary shelters that the Israelites lived in during those 40 years.

The Shalom Life Center invites you to visit their hut located on the grass next to the back parking lot from September 23 – 30.
Lee County Election Deadlines
The following deadlines apply for the General Election on Nov. 6, 2018:
  • Register to vote – Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2018
  • Request Vote-By-Mail Ballot – Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018
Early voting will occur as follows:
  • General – Oct. 22 thru Nov. 3, 2018
If you are voting by mail and you will not be at the address provided, contact Lee County Elections. Your ballot will not be forwarded to a different address. For more information call 239-533-8683 or on-line at  www.Lee.Vote .
Sept 9 Judy Burget 
Sept 14 Jenn Blosser 
Sept 14 Frances Pake
Sept 16 Genelle Grant
Sept 19 Allison Farnum
Sept 19 Toni Latino
Sept 21 Deb Leigh 
Sept 24 Leslie Gatto
Sept 29 Mary Pat Fitzgibbons
Sept 30 Jen Smith 
Board of Trustees

Matt Hoffman 239-222-4836 mwaters106@yahoo.com
President Elect
Alison Carville 239-634-0487 alisoncarville@gmail.com
Jen Smith 630-881-0000 jenw930@gmail.com             
VP Finance
Bruce Marble 239-596-2703 bamarble44@gmail.com     
VP Programming
Cathy Snow 239-896-3693 cm snow23@gmail.com
VP Ministerial Services
Lesley Peterson 239-839-4434 unicorn@cyberstreet.com
VP Operations
Mary Alice Pierce 239-267-4429 piercemaryalice@gmail.com           
Member at Large
Don Ehat 239-947-8143 don.ehat@gmail.com

Rev. Allison Farnum 239-561-2700x204 minister@uucfm.org
Director of Music   
Suellen Kipp music@uucfm.org
Director of RE        
Office Manager       
Building Supervisor   
Nursery Supervisor