Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Marin
UUCM Email Weekly!
October 25, 2018
Issue #471
Sunday Worship Services
10:30 am
The Sunday Circle 9 am
9 am - The Sunday Circle 

Upcoming Topics and Leaders
10/28/18 Pets as Guides                                 Sandy Levitan
11/04/18 The Election: Making a Difference  Kat Braeman
More Info and additional service topics.

The Sunday Circle is held from 
9:00 am to 10:00 am each Sunday in the Fireside Room.
Notes Along the Way
Rev marcus
This time of year, they say, the veil between the worlds is thinnest. From Dia de los Muertos to All Saints Day, from Samhain and All-Hallows to All Souls, traditions around the world mark this time of year as a time for remembering our beloved dead. I think in most of our lives these practices of remembrance have been somewhat eclipsed by our Halloween focus on costumes and candy. But it's not hard, of course, to see the link between traditional Halloween costumes and remembering the dead.

Trick-or-treating actually has the most direct link. Trick-or-treating as we now practice it is an evolution of Soul Cakes from the All Souls' Day parades in England, which date back to about the year 1000. Like many Christian traditions, the practice was started as a way of adapting the indigenous, pagan traditions of the land-in this case of the Celts-to fit with church doctrine and culture. The ancient practice was to leave offerings of food and wine to appease roaming spirits. What eventually came about was instead a practice of the poor going from home to home begging for food, and families giving them pastries called "soul cakes" in return for a promise to pray for the family's dead. I always think about asking for such a promise of any trick-or-treaters we get, but Emily has talked me out of it, probably for the best.

In our tradition, we do not have shared beliefs about what happens when we die. I have spoken with Unitarians who believe in a heavenly reunification with loved ones, and with those who are clear there's nothing after life but the slow process of becoming compost. I've heard about returning to a great oneness, about a cosmic-biochemical return to the web of life, and I've heard about mystery, wondrous mystery, terrifying mystery, tragic mystery, holy mystery.

I joke about it, but there's something sad to me that I won't be promising to pray for anyone's dead family in exchange of sweets, that no one will be promising to pray for mine. Unlike those ancient ancestors, I don't hold a belief about the spirits or souls of the dead needing prayers, to get into heaven or otherwise. But there is a sweetness about a community practicing a ritual like that, about the stories and names that are shared, about the connection that is preserved to those who have passed on.

So that's what we'll do this Sunday.  Bring photographs or tokens of your own beloved dead for our altar of remembrance, in the ofrenda tradition of Dia de los Muertos. The whole service will be multigenerational and we'll tell a Scottish story about the meaning and purpose of death in pieces throughout the service. People of all ages are invited to come in costume, and there will be a few costumes available here for those willing to help make the story come alive.

With you on the Journey,
Rev. Marcus
jef melcher
Participate and Educate about Democracy:  
Supporting democracy in the world at large is one of our principles. How do you as parents involve your children in learning this process? Democracy is not just on polling day. It mostly happens before and after that one day. Children learn by watching. How do they see you participate? Here are a few suggestions for this education in democracy:
  • Discuss the issues with them.
  • Pick an issue, follow it, donate to support it,  put up a lawn or window sign.

  • Let them think about how they would vote.
  • Let them watch you fill out your mail-ballot.
  • Take them to the polling place with you and take them in the booth with you.
  • Review the election results and talk about how various measures passing or not might affect their future.
  • Organize a visit with parents and youth to visit one of your elected officials. It is this relationship that will be powerful when the time comes to give them a call about an important matter.
  • Pick an issue you and your offspring are interested in and follow it through the State or Federal legislative branch. Write a letter about it. 
Dia de Los Muertos, October 28th at UUCM: There will again be an ofrenda (alter) to silently place mementos during the ritual of remembrance. This is an All ages service. Children ages six and up are invited to stay in the service. The Nursery -  K1  program will also be happening. Children in that age range have a choice. An activity table will be at the back of the sanctuary making pretty skull masks, and writing love letters to deceased relatives or pets. Parents are invited to join them in these activities at the table or in your seats.
Family Group Sunday, Nov 11th, 1pm to 3pm - Family Bowling in San Rafael at the Country Club Bowl: Parents hanging out, youth gathered together, children and parents actively sharing space and time. We want to know how many lanes to reserve. Please RSVP to:   Grace Dearborn or   Ali Jenkins. Let us know how many in your family intend to bowl and if you want to join in on the pizza purchase. Shoe rental is $4, Lanes are $35/hr. Per person, an hour of bowling will cost about $12, two hours will cost $20. Scholarships available. Also, please let us know how many slices of pizza your family will want.

Our Whole Lives for ages 5-7:
We are needing to postpone our OWL class start-up until next Spring. If your child will be aged 5-7 by February they will be in the age range. We will have another OWL information meeting in January. If you know you want your child in the class you can register with our   Director of Family Ministries, Jeffrey Melcher. Learn more about this curriculum at  https://www.uua.org/re/owl.

We are still looking:  
for a couple of experienced teachers to assist in growing our 2-3 grade class. We have parents and children interested - we need teachers to be co-learners with them.

Jeffrey Melcher,  M.Div. 
Director of Family Ministries 
Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Marin
Selected Upcoming Dates
Upcoming dates link to the UUCM calendar for saving on iCal, Outlook etc.
Dinners for Eight - November 3
"There is something profoundly satisfying about sharing a meal.  Eating together, breaking bread together is one of the oldest and most fundamentally unifying and human experiences." By Barbara Coloroso. Get to know other members of the congregation more closely by eating dinner in their homes.  Dinners for Eight (or Six) is a coordinated potluck. We meet on the 1st Saturday of the month, October through April (but not in January.) Each month a volunteer host will offer a main course and guests bring appetizers, salad/soup, dessert, and wine and good conversation.
There will be a Dinners for 8 on Nov 3 at several houses of members. We would love to have new participants this year. If you have not attended one of these dinners, you really should join this one. Contact Sher Sheldon at 415- 892-177 or   shershel@comcast.net for details.
UUMarin Game Night - November 2
Children and adults are welcome to join in a fun evening of games. Bring your own games or play ones others have brought. Light snacks available. First Friday night of each month in Fireside room. 7:00 PM  - 9:00 PM

UUCM Common Read - Update
Have you read the UUCM Adult Ed Common Read?:  

White Fragility: Why It's So Hard For White People To Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo

Please Join the Conversation: Nov. 4th from 12:15-1:30 with Reverend Marcus Hartlief in the Fireside Room.

Resisting the racist culture is a moment by moment spiritual practice.  Join in dedicating yourself to this peace and justice practice. 

Read More Here:

All 10 copies purchased by Adult Ed are in circulation.  If you have completed reading the book please return your copy to the box in the community room so it may circulate to the next reader.
Email Ilana Trumbull-Stearns Adult Ed Committee Chair:
adultRE@uumarin.org to sponsor a copy for circulation at UUCM: $14 ($16 plus tax and shipping if you purchase yourself from Beacon Press). 
Also email to hold a copy for a two week honor system "checkout."  

Also available on Kindle and Audible:

Marin County Libraries have copies but there is a wait so reserve your copy soon:
Holiday Fair -- Sunday, November 18
Holiday Fair -- Sunday, November 18
Crafters, do you have creations to sell at the Holiday Fair on Stone Soup Sunday? Handcrafted scarves, tote bags, jewelry, and other gift items are popular this time of year. Please let Margaret Johnston or Marge Hollinger know what specialties you would like to share.
Missing Hymnals?

If you have a grey or teal hymnal sitting at home, would you please return it to UUMarin? We are running low on hymnals for Sunday services. Also, Worship Committee urges you to purchase and dedicate a hymnal (we have bookplates to put in the front.) Please complete and submit this form to the office https://uumarin.org/protected/Forms/Hymnal-Dedication.pdf . We also need more of the teal hymnals, so the board is working on finding funding and buying more of these also. Thank you, Julie Prentice, Worship Committee Chair.
New Address for Order of Service Announcements
We will use announcements@uumarin.org as the email address
for people to send announcements in for the back page of the order of service. Whomever is doing work on any particular week's o/s will have full access to it. The deadline is Wed 5pm.
Social Justice Education/Action
        From the UUJustice Ministry of California:
The 2018 ballot recommendations are now available for download at

Also this chart shows the sources and justifications for each recommendation.
The next Social Justice meeting will be on October 28 at noon in the Fellowship Hall.  
 Contribute to the 3rd Tuesday night dinner at the First Presbyterian Church. Contact Carol Littrell. 
UUSC Take Action Items - Sign petitions, learn about issues, donate money.
Do you want to make a difference in our county and the world? We focus on local issues which are relevant to all of us. Bring your ideas and concerns to the  UUCM Social Justice Committee.  We meet the third Sunday of each month at noon.  
Continue your commitment to environmental and economic justice by shopping at   http://shop.uusc.org 
Visitor's Box
We cherish diversity and welcome among us
people of all races, cultures, ages, abilities, sexual
identities/orientations, and faith perspectives.

GUESTS are always welcome. Sunday worship is a time for inspiration, renewal, and connection.

  CHILDREN AND YOUTH  join adults during the first part of the service, and then attend Religious Exploration classes. Nursery and toddler care is provided during the 10:30 service. There is a speaker system to bring sound from Fellowship Hall to the nursing room and the pre-K area. 

  REFRESHMENT HOUR  in the Courtyard or  Fireside Room follows the services.
 There are four "Sunday First Time Visitor" parking spots at the top of the parking lot.  
Come, join us! 
Quick Links
Staff Links
 Developmental Minister:  Rev. Marcus Hartlief revmarcus@uumarin.org  
Office hours:
Tuesday-Thursday: mid-morning to late afternoon or into the evening.
 Call, text or email to make an appointment.  
415-578-9632 (direct), 510-213-0404 (cell) 
Director of Family Ministries:  Jeffrey Melcher  dre@uumarin.org
Office hours:
Wed 10:30-2:00
Thursday 10:30-2:00
Sunday 9:00-1:00
Administrator: Janette Morrow  office@uumarin.org
  415-578-9577 direct 
Choir director:  Amanda Morando  muusic@uumarin.org    
Pianist:  Milton Wong   milton.wong@csaa.com 

Nursery Teacher: Glynda Christian gjchristi@gmail.com 
   803 875 8911 
Pastoral Care Committee: pastoralcare@uumarin.org 
Don Beck: 415-892-0642 
Newsletter Guidelines
I appreciate any feedback about this weekly newsletter. 
eWeekly Deadline for Thursday issue:
Tuesday by 7 am - activities and announcements, Staff columns, committee reports

Weekly articles can contain:
  • Notices of UUCM sponsored events, meetings, or other activities which involve the entire congregation.
  • Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) or Pacific Central District (PCD) announcements of interest to the entire congregation.
(Staff article length 250 words)

Weekly, UUCM Connect and Special Announcements Editor: Lisa Cohen 
Backup Production Editor: Valerie Taylor
Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Marin
415- 578-9577 - Direct
240 Channing Way
San Rafael, CA 94903