Seeking the Spirit, Building Community, Changing the World
Wednesday, December 20, 2017
Winter Solstice Celebration for All Ages
Reverend Emily Manvel Leite,
Reverend Mary Ann Macklin, and
Reverend Scott McNeill
Special music by Ray Fellman and our
Come share in a quiet, reflective service celebrating the returning sun. We will fully inhabit this place on our planet as we join together in a candlelit spiral procession and reconnect with the earth and its natural cycles. Childcare provided for very young children in Room 108.
Sunday, December 24th, 2017
9:15 and 11:15 a.m.
Set the Bar Low for Joy
Reverend Mary Ann Macklin
Reverend Scott McNeill
During these distressing times in our country, the holidays can add to the stress by creating high expectations for joy and merry-making. Congregation member Sharon Wiseman wisely told me that in such circumstances, she simply "sets the bar low for joy." So join us for a low-bar joyful worship on Sunday morning, Christmas Eve. We will visit the Twelve Days of Christmas, do some merry meaning making, and pray for peace.
On the morning of December 24, Childcare and Religious Exploration for Preschool through 8th grade will be available at
Sunday, December 24, 2017
Away in a Manger Nativity Pageant
Reverend Mary Ann Macklin and
Director of Religious Education Adrienne Summerlot
Away in a Manger service in Fellowship Hall, especially for children; includes a Nativity pageant. Different age groups have different roles to play! There are props and outfits you can bring with you if you like.
Details about this service here.
There will be no childcare during this service.
Sunday, December 24, 2017
Candlelight Christmas Eve -- Following the Star
Reverend Mary Ann Macklin and Reverend Scott McNeill
Candlelight Christmas Eve service with music from our choir, and singing of carols, including Silent Night by candlelight.
While much of the Candlelight Christmas Eve service is an annual tradition, this year's theme will encourage us to follow the bright star in the dark sky that calls us toward an unknown future, as well as remind us of the need for sanctuary and rest along the journey. (We'll be using the UU hymnal for carol singing at this service (instead of projected words), so please feel free to sing the words you like the best!)
No childcare provided at this service.
Sunday, December 31, 2017
9:15 and 11:15 a.m.
Reverend Forrest Gilmore
Join us as we welcome our new Affiliated Community Minister as a guest in our pulpit
Large group Religious Education as well as childcare will be provided at both services.
Happy Holidays and Blessings of the Season
from Your Ministers and Staff!
As we approach the longest night of the year during this season of holy days, may there be an ease to your journey. The following excerpt is from John O'Donohue's "To Bless the Space Between Us"---
For Equilibrium, a Blessing"
Like the joy of the sea coming home to shore,
May the relief of laughter rinse through your soul.
As the wind loves to call things to dance,
May your gravity be lightened by grace.
Like the dignity of moonlight restoring the earth,
May your thoughts incline with reverence and respect
On a first reading, allow these words to feed your mind. Then Breathe. On a second reading, allow these words to fill your heart. Then Breathe. On a third reading, allow these words to bless your spirit. With wishes for the presence of laughter, grace and grandmother moon to lighten your way.
And now for some fascinating kudos and updates.
Hogwarts Holiday Fundraising Feast
On Sunday, December 10th, our Fellowship Hall and adjacent hallways were transformed into an interactive and tasty scene from Hogwarts. For many of us, the story and archetypes from the Harry Potter series created by JK Rowling (not to be confused with our congregation's Aesthetics Consultant and Past President GK Rowe) are mysterious, inspiring and fun. A big thank you to the Harry Potter Class, Teachers, Religious Educator Adrienne Summerlot, and all helper elves for allowing us to have a blissful evening in these challenging times.
Susan Swaney Choral Composition Fund
On Sunday morning, December 10th, we experienced selections from Carl Philip Emmanuel Bach's
Magnificat which was followed by the celebration of Twenty-Five Years with Susan Swaney as the Music Director of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Bloomington. During the celebration we announced:
The Reverend Dr. Susan Swaney Choral Composition Fund, established with an anonymous gift of $10,000, will allow the choir director to choose texts and commission new and established composers to create anthems specifically for the choir and congregation of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Bloomington.
While acceptance of gifts to this fund will be ongoing, we encourage everyone who currently is able to do so to donate by December 31st. All monetary gifts, whether large or small, are encouraged. It is a way to say Thank You to Susan Swaney as well as create new musical opportunities for our choir and congregation.
Ministers Discretionary Fund
'Tis the Season. During the month of December, we often receive generous donations to our Ministers' Discretionary Fund, coinciding with the end of another tax season. Yes. Such donations are tax deductible. It is the practice of our congregation to offer congregants opportunities to contribute to a Ministers' Discretionary Fund which our full-time ministers may, at their individual or joint discretion, use to respond confidentially to requests for assistance from members and friends.
The existence of this fund, a longtime tradition of our congregation, arises from the fact that the Ministers are often made aware of situations where a one-time aid in financial assistance may help further the vision and mission of the congregation for individuals, families or groups who are members/friends of the congregation. Examples: a one-time assistance for emergency purposes (unpaid water bill), financial assistance in participating in a congregational activity which may be cost prohibitive, and other means of helping those involved here to seek the spirit, build community and change the world.
The funds in the Ministers' Discretionary Fund are to be spent in accordance with the mission and vision of the congregation and in keeping with the congregation's tax exempt status. Restrictions include: 1) funds may not be used for the direct or indirect benefit of the individual Minister and/or her/his/ their families and 2) funds may not be spent on any line item already covered in our operating budget. Without violating the confidential nature of the disbursement, the Ministers provide the Chief Financial Officer with a general description of the purpose for which the funds are requested. Funds in the Ministers' Discretionary Fund are maintained in the regular financial records and totals reported according to standard reporting procedures.
The Fund belongs to the Congregation and not to the Minister or Ministers; in other words, if a minister leaves, the funds remain for the next minister. With full respect for the privacy of recipients, the Ministers will regularly report to the Board in general terms the amounts and types of expenditures that have been made from this fund.
If you are interested in contributing to this fund, please make your check payable to Unitarian Universalist Church of Bloomington with "Ministers Discretionary Fund" in the memo line.
May the Force Be With You,
Reverend Mary Ann Macklin, Senior Minister
From Our Board of Directors
Thank you to all who attended the Congregational Meeting on December 10th. Here's a brief recap of some highlights for those who weren't able to join us. The archived video of the event can be found at http://uubloomington.yourstreamlive.com/
We were delighted to announce the members of the inaugural Right Relations Committee: Amy Makice, Doris Wittenburg, and Jack King. Thank you to Amy, Doris, and Jack for their willingness to take on these new roles and the Board will continue to support them as they see fit to ask.
We were also delighted that the congregation endorsed Forrest Gilmore, who many of you know from his role as the Executive Director of the Shalom Community Center, as an Affiliated Community Minister of UUCB. Rev. Gilmore will officially take on this role over the summer--stay tuned for more information.
The Board recognized and thanked two staff members who reached 25 year marks with UUCB this year: our Church Administrator Carol Marks and our new Honorary Minister of Music Sue Swaney. Thank you to Carol and Sue for all they do to make UUCB a consistently welcoming and effective community.
The congregation approved the Bylaw changes as described at
. And Treasurer Sandy Churchill gave an overview of our finances to date for the current fiscal year (July'17-June'18): We have revenue of 43.6% of our budget and expenses of 41.0%.
Our thoughts are with Carol Holding upon the passing of her mother, Ann Hexamer Eddy, on Sunday, December 17. Ann lived in Cincinnati and was 94 years old. She was a dedicated volunteer and met her second husband while volunteering. Cards sent to Carol's home are welcome.
January Creativity Intersession for
Religious Education begins
Social Justice Funds Committee Awards 4 Grants for Fall 2017
The Social Justice Funds Committee announced four new grants at the Congregational Meeting on December 10.
Hope for Prisoners Task Force will receive a grant of $1,000 for its new program serving children of those incarcerated, Kids with Absent Parents (KAP)
Habitat for Humanity Task Force will receive $1,000 for its Resale property project
Reproductive Justice Task Force will receive $900 to support its Jackson film screening fundraiser
Team First Book Monroe County will receive $1000 to support reading programs in local schools.
The Social Justice Funds Committee, chaired by Steve Mascari, awards grants in the fall of each year from the Lundin Social Justice fund, held in the Special Purposes Fund, and also coordinates nominations of possible recipients of the 25% of Sunday Plate fund, which is voted on at the June Congregational Meeting each year.
Our Faith in Action in the Community
Macaroni for Shalom Center!
For the last several years, our congregation members and friends have provided macaroni and spaghetti for the meal program at Shalom Community Center. Please remember to pick up a package the next time you go to the store. Collection basket for donations is under the Social Justice table in the Commons.
UU Women's Alliance Meets January 4
"Recycling for Education," The Teacher's Warehouse & Recycling Center, by Judy Witt is our program for Thursday, January 4th. The hosts are Glee Noble and Dian Robbins. The Women's Alliance meets the first Thursday of each month at 11:30 a.m. in Fellowship Hall. The meeting begins with a brown bag lunch. Drinks and dessert are provided by the hosts of the month. The program begins at noon, followed by a business meeting. Join us. Everyone is welcome.
Path to Membership: Exploring Unitarian Universalism Class
January 14 and 21
Are you interested in learning more about Unitarian Universalism (UU) and this congregation? Are you considering becoming a member of this dynamic religious community? Whether you are considering membership or are just curious, this class is for you. The Exploring UU Class will be held on January 14 and 21, 2-4 p.m. in the church library. Please plan to attend both Sunday sessions, since different material will be covered in each session. Register before January 8 by signing up at the Welcome Table in the foyer, or emailing Ann LeDuc at firstname.lastname@example.org. Free childcare is available if requested in advance. Kathy and Steve Gilbert will facilitate this fun and informative class.
Welcome to our newest members!
On December 10, we welcomed 6 new members into the congregation. Please offer a warm welcome to our newest members: Linda Hall, Valerie Jones, Jessica McCanse, Nicole Motz, Don Ottinger, and Meg Prince. Below are a few bios to help you get to know them. --Ann LeDuc, Connections Coordinator.
Valerie, her husband, Kevin and almost 13 year old son, Lucas, moved to Bloomington from the Raleigh, North Carolina, area in 2012. Valerie works as a music therapist at Fogerty Music Therapy and enjoys all of the musical offerings available in Bloomington. Reading and cooking are leisure interests that Valerie has enjoyed in the past and hopes to again when her schedule allows.
Jessica moved to Bloomington in 2015 with her husband, Seth, and two sons Grayson and Edric. Jessica works at All-Options Pregnancy Resource Center and is passionate about helping people in Bloomington and beyond. In her free time, she can be found chasing her boys, nurturing neighborhood cats and kids, cooking something she can't pronounce, writing sappy prose, or recording internet karaoke.
Nicole and her husband Ben moved to Bloomington from California in 2008. Nicole is the mother of two children, Eisley (age 7) and Ari (age 3). She is a registered nurse at the Indiana University Health Center. She enjoys all manner of outdoor adventures, running and hiking the trails of Southern Indiana, good music, and being with friends and family.
Don moved to Bloomington, Indiana, from Bloomington, Illinois, in August 2017. His wife Joyce died in 2015 after 61 years of marriage. They had three children. Both Don and Joyce were UU members in Bloomington, Illinois, and Venice, Florida. Don was a professor of psychology at Purdue for 30 years before retiring to Florida in 1994. He continues his long-time love of travel and adventure.
Thank you from Gourmet Galaxy
Thank you to all the wonderful volunteers and gourmet cooks who made the Gourmet Galaxy at the Holiday Bazaar a huge success!
Celeste McGregor and Ann LeDuc, Co-chairs
UU History for You--
Arminianism and its indirect connection to UUs
Jacobus Arminius (né Jakob Harmenszoon) was a Dutch theologian born in 1560 who died in 1609. He was taught by one of Calvin's students, but broke with Calvinists (mostly Baptists) over numerous interpretations of the relation of humans to God. He rejected the idea of predestination. Calvin believed that God, being all-knowing, already knew who would enter enter heaven or hell. Arminius claimed this would destroy the concept of free will and leave everything to grace (acts of benefice to humans). He believed that atonement was important because humans are sinners. He argued that prayer and faith could lead to (but did not guarantee) acts of grace. Original sin could be countered, he felt, through living a pious life and thus all of humanity can potentially be judged. The group of followers he organized (called Remonstrants) petitioned the Dutch government to recognize their religious beliefs. Eventually (decades after Arminius's death) they were recognized as a legitimate Protestant denomination in Holland. Both Methodists and Universalists owe some of their views to Arminius. Arminians were perceived by both Lutherans and Calvinists as a heresy and when Universalists and Unitarians emerged in the 1700s they were often accused of being Arminians.
--Elof Carlson, UUCB Historian
Current Membership: 535
Attendance Sunday, December 10 9
:15: 237 11:15: 291 TOTAL: 528
Sunday, December 17 9:15: 94 11:15: 160 TOTAL: 254
Non-Pledge Offering December 10
$1,000 December 17 $654
Total to be donated (25%) to All-Options Pregnancy Resource Center $414
Grocery Card Sales (Bloomingfoods or Lucky's Market)
December 10: $700, income to UUCB $35 December 17:
$1350, income to UUCB $69
Shambhala Meditation WILL Meet January 1
There WILL be Shambhala Meditation on Monday, January 1 at 12:00 noon in the Library here at church, led by Sarah Flint. However, the group will NOT meet on Monday, December 25.
UU Freethinkers Enjoy Free Ranging Discussion
The purpose of the UU Freethinkers bi-weekly meeting is to create the opportunity for participants to raise questions and engage in open and non-structured discussion of issues of social concern, political concern, and theological/religious concern. UU Freethinkers meet on alternating Sundays after children's religious education classes end, in Room 208.
UU Freethinkers are scheduled on Sunday, December 24, 12:45 pm. (At press-time we did not have confirmation that this meeting would take place on December 24--please email Ann Watzel for confirmation. -Ed.)
UU Children's Choir Upcoming Schedule
New and returning singers, Kg-6th grade, always welcome!
, sing at Winter Solstice service
. Run-through songs (Meeting Room) at
Service begins at
and ends around
Questions? Contact Jill:
UU Humanists Meet January 14
An opportunity for regular, open, wide-ranging discussions relating to ethics, human development, and the nature of the universe. The bi-weekly forum will meet next on Sunday, January 14, at 12:45 p.m. in Room 208. The discussion will be led by John Crosby, on "Fact to Fiction to Folklore." For general questions about our UU Humanist group,
Labyrinth Coming in January
Once again this year we will have a meditative labyrinth in our Meeting Room, the week of January 7-13. Open hours will be provided in the January 2 issue of The Prologue.
Reverend Mary Ann Macklin, our Senior Minister,
can be reached at 812-332-3695, ext. 201 and is available by appointment on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday afternoons.
Reverend Scott McNeill, our Associate Minister,
can be reached at 812-332-3695, ext. 209 and is available by appointment on Wednesday and Friday afternoons.
. He can also be reached on his mobile phone, 703-577-0919 and for after-hours pastoral emergencies, please call him at 812-727-0919.
Reverend Emily Manvel Leite
our Minister of Religious Education,
can be reached at
Our Covenant of Right Relations
Livestreaming Our Sunday Services
Please let us know if you have a problem with the livestream, by emailing Andy Beargie at
It is also helpful if you let Andy know which web browser you are using.
Beacon Young Adult/Campus Ministry
Orion Day, our Young Adult/Campus Ministry Coordinator, can be reached at
and keeps office hours at the Indiana Memorial Union Room 577. Stop by and say hello!
Who Ya Gonna Call?
Our Church Administrator Carol Marks acts as a contact point for many questions that come up about church life. If you see something around the building that needs attention or you have other churchy questions, please call or email Carol: 812-332-3695 ext. 200 or email@example.com, and she will help figure it out.
Office Hours: M-F 10-4
A link to our church calendar can be found on
of our website.
Prologue Publication Schedule
The Prologue is edited by Carol Marks, mostly. The deadline for articles is 10 a.m. on the date of publication. Next few issues: The first and third Tuesdays of each month.
Jan 2, Jan 16, Feb 6, Feb 20, Mar 6, Mar 20, etc.
Masthead photo from the interwebs.
|Unitarian Universalist Church