Community Unitarian Universalist Congregation at White Plains, NY
Spirituality   ·   Compassion   ·   Service
February issue of On the Journey: God - Click HERE
This week's post from the Sabbatical Minister - Click HERE 
Practice of the Week: Poetry By Heart
By recording words of wisdom that have personal meaning and "living" with them until they become one's "heart wisdom," those words come to occupy a place beyond memory. When you live with a poem so intimately that it enters your heart, it becomes a constant resource, companion, and guide. The rhymes and rhythms we stored deep in our brains stay with us. READ MORE
All begin in worship at 10:00am then leave for RE classes and youth group. Following youth group, youth have a worship planning discussion with Rev. Kimberley and Tracy. There are openings coming up for you to get to know our children and youth by serving as an assistant in a Religious Education class. No preparation required! Just spend an hour with our amazing children and youth while you fulfill our Safe Congregation practice of having two adults with our young people at all times. Click HERE to view available dates - then volunteer!... READ MORE    
Beethoven and God... I've always thought of Beethoven as having a God's-eye view of humanity. Heroism, grief, humor, gruffness, refinement--they all seem to reside side-by-side and segue one into the other with no warning or apology... To hear more of guest violinist Elena Peres, as well as the CUUC Choir, come to the Spring Concert at CUUC on Sun Apr 26 at 12:30pm... READ MORE 
Upcoming Worship Services

Sun Feb 2 
"A Mighty Fortress" 
Rev. Kimberley Debus 
In the first of a three-part series, we will examine what the hymns we sing have to say about the theologies that Unitarian Universalism embraces, and how we can understand them both for our own spiritual growth but in conversation with those from other faiths. We begin by looking at the God above and beyond us.  
Sun Feb 9  
"For the Earth Forever Turning
Rev. Kimberley Debus  
In this second part of a three-part series, we will continue our examination of what the hymns we sing have to say about the theologies that Unitarian Universalism embraces. This week we will look at the divine in nature.  
Our YouTube Channel has videos of many past services. Check it out HERE!
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Day in Place   
Day in Place, Sat Feb 1, Sunrise to Sunset
Join the PlaceKeepers to appreciate, improve, and maintain the building and grounds of CUUC, our spiritual home. Start with us at the morning Spirit Fire or join any time during the day. Wood Cutters meet at the wood racks outside the sanctuary at 10:00am. Contact: Terri Kung (, or Bice Wilson ( ).
Accessibility Forum
CUUC Accessibility Upgrades Forum, Sun Feb 2, 11:30am, Fellowship Hall
The Building Committee will walk through our plans to make the building accessible to persons with disabilities. See details HERE. Contact: Creighton Cray (  
Cooking for HOPE
Meal for HOPE, Sun Feb 2, 12:00pm, CUUC Kitchen
Join volunteers from the Hunger & Homelessness Social Justice Team in the kitchen to prepare a meal for HOPE Community Services soup kitchen. Help us feed our neighbors facing food insecurity. Contact: Nicole Turygin (  
Team Meetings Sun Feb 2 
Building Committee: Accessibility Upgrades Forum, 11:30am, Fellowship Hall   Contact: Creighton Cray ( )
Environmental Practices Group, 11:45am, Rm 41  Contact: Janet Bear (, Charlie McNally ( )

Hunger & Homelessness: Cooking for HOPE Soup Kitchen, 12:00pm, Kitchen  Contact: Nicole Turygin ( 
Thank you to the hardworking parents and youth in our 4/5 and 6/7 classes for a successful Chili Community Meal fundraiser last Sunday. Our RE classes raised about $330 for their social justice projects! It was inspiring to see so many pots of delicious chili lined up and ready to be served by our young congregants. ~ Christine Haran, Religious Education Council 
Teams, Reserve Your 2020-2021 Dates!
Program Council, Wed Feb 5, 7:30pm, Room 41
This month's Program Council meeting will begin setting up next year's congregation calendar. If your team or committee needs to reserve dates, please plan to attend or contact chair Joann Prinzivalli ( ). 
Wise Aging
Wise Aging Group, Mon Feb 3, 2:00 - 3:30pm, Fireside
A series of monthly conversations to help us grow wiser in good company. We will use the book On the Brink of Everything: Grace, Gravity, and Getting Old by Parker Palmer to spur on conversation and reflection. Contact: Rev. LoraKim Joyner ( 
Eating to Help Save the Planet  
Presentation: "From Finance to Farming," Sun Feb 9, 11:30am, Fellowship Hall
The CUUC Environmental Practices Group presents "From Finance to Farming - a Journey to Reconnect with Food and Land" with Jason Grauer, Senior Crops Manager at Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture in Tarrytown. A selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes will be available for tasting. Childcare available if requested by Wed Feb 5. Contact: Janet Bear ( 
2019-2020 Congregation Survey
Help the Committee on Ministry evaluate how well we support our spiritual development by answering our survey. It takes 10-15 minutes and responses are confidential. Pick up a copy on Sunday, or download HERE and print. Return completed surveys to any COM member or drop off at the CUUC office. Or take the survey online HERE. The survey is open until Mon Feb 10. Contact: Tom Wacht ( 
From the Treasurer  
Tax statements for 2019 that were not picked up have been mailed out. If you have questions or have not received yours yet, contact: Diane Pearson, bookkeeper (, 914-946-1660 x5) or Chris Kortlandt, treasurer (, 917-821-4289) . 
Serving Indigenous and Families of Color
Tracy Breneman would like to be in conversation with Indigenous and Families of Color (you or someone in your family is Indigenous or a Person of Color) who attend CUUC. She is wondering if our RE ministry is meeting your needs and would be grateful to learn how you and your family would feel supported and served in this community. Please feel welcome to speak with Tracy any Sunday after worship or to reach out via email or phone/text (, 914-434-7539).  
2019-20 UUA Common Read 
Our UUA "Common Read" this year is An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States and An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States for Young People . Spanning more than 400 years, this bottom-up history examines the legacy of indigenous peoples' steadfast fight against imperialism. Available at coffee hour. Contact: Jeff Tomlinson (
District Happenings - February 2020  
To see this month's Opportunities for Connection newsletter for our region, with articles and the calendar of Central East Region events and webinars, click HERE
Share the Plate for February: MLK Institute for Nonviolence 
We share half our non-pledge collection this month with the Westchester Martin Luther King, Jr. Institute for Nonviolence, which has promoted nonviolent activism for social justice since 1987. Their mission is to advance racial equity for all our communities by: educating and empowering youth and adults; supporting inclusiveness, courage, and peace; and collaborating to advocate for justice, equity, and shared power for all. Organizations and programs include Westchester Coalition for Police Reform (WCPR), Beloved Community Dinners, Interfaith Connection, the MLK Freedom Library, Ending Violence, Building Hope (EVBH) Youth Conferences, and the annual Celebration of Champions. Learn more at 
Caring & Sharing Circle
If anyone knows of another among us who is in need of a caregiver, please contact Robin Rocchi (917-656-6830,, or Johanna Bauer (, 914-636-1047). Or contact the CUUC office (914-946-1660 x2,
This Week at CUUC
The full calendar can be found HERE. Room numbers subject to change; please check the board on Sunday morning. To reserve a room or Zoom online meeting, contact the CUUC office (914-946-1660 x2,
Saturday, February 1 - 6:00am Day in Place (Building & Grounds); 9:00am Rental: Exercise (Fireside); 10:00am Food Prep for HOPE (Kitchen); 10:00am Zen (Rm 43); 10:15am  Overeaters Anonymous (Rm 21); 1:00pm Journey Group Facilitators (Rm 14)

Sunday, February 2 - 9:30am Nursery Care (Rm 32); 10:00am Worship (Sanctuary); 10:00am Religious Exploration Classes & Youth Group (start in Sanctuary); 11:15am Coffee Hour (Fireside); 11:30am Accessibility Upgrades Forum (Fellowship Hall); 11:45am Musicians' Rehearsal (Sanctuary); 11:45am Environmental Practices (Rm 41); 12:00pm Cooking for HOPE (Kitchen)

Monday, February 3 - 2:00pm Wise Aging Group (Fireside); 5:00pm Rental: Exercise (Fireside); 6:30pm T'ai-ch'i (Fireside); 7:00pm Rental: Straight Spouse Network (Rm 14); 8:00pm Rental: Amnesty International (Rm 41)

Tuesday, February 4 - 10:00am Rental: Exercise (Fireside); 1:00pm Rental: Watercolor Class (Fireside); 7:00pm Rental: WCSPP (Classes); 7:30pm Choir Rehearsal (Sanctuary)

Wednesday, February 5 - 8:30am Dance Movement (Fireside); 7:30pm Program Council (Rm 41)

Thursday, February 6 - 9:30am Rental: League of Women Voters (Rm 41); 11:30am Memorial for Frank P. Santoloquido (Sanctuary); 7:30pm Journey Group Facilitators (Rm 14)
Friday, February 7 - 7:00pm Youth Group (Rm 14)

Saturday, February 8 - 9:00am Rental: Exercise (Fireside); 10:00am Zen (Rm 43); 10:15am Overeaters Anonymous (Rm 21); 1:00pm Rental: WCBNY (Rm 41); 2:00pm Rental: WCHJ (Fellowship Hall)

Sunday, February 9 - 8:45am Choir Rehearsal (Sanctuary); 9:30am Nursery Care (Rm 32); 10:00am Religious Exploration Classes & Youth Group (start in Sanctuary); 10:00am Worship (Sanctuary); 11:15am Coffee Hour (Fireside); 11:40am Presentation: "From Finance to Farming" (Fellowship Hall) 

Minister: Rev. Meredith Garmon,, 914-946-1660 x3
Sabbatical Minister: Rev. Kimberley Debus,
Dir of Lifespan Religious Education and Faith Development: Tracy Breneman,, 914-946-1660 x4
Community Minister: Rev. Deb Morra,, 914-830-1509
Community Minister: Rev. LoraKim Joyner,
Music Director: Adam Kent,, 212-595-7280
Choir Director: Lisa Meyer,
Choir Pianist: Georgianna Pappas,
Children's Music Director: Lyra Harada,
Congregation & Communications Administrator: Pamela Parker,, 914-946-1660 x2
Bookkeeper: Diane Pearson,, 946-1660 x5
Board of Trustees
Board Chair: Al Rocchi,
Vice Chair: Joann Prinzivalli,
Treasurer: Chris Kortlandt,
Social Justice Coordinators
Mary Cavallero,
Emily Economou,
Jeff Tomlinson,
Rev. Meredith Garmon,
Quick Links

On The Journey (current and past issues)
Social Justice Teams
Practice of the Week (current and all past)
The Communitarian Magazine
CUUC Main Web Site
Liberal Pulpit Index
The Liberal Pulpit Video
Boundless Way Zen of Westchester

Sometimes a weekly missive from the minister is a long, well formed, well executed exploration of a topic - whether it's something happening in the world or the congregation, or an exploration of an idea, a theology, or a piece of art.

Sometimes, a weekly missive from the minister is a series of ideas, none worth more than couple of paragraphs, but all interesting and important. A buffet of blog bits... A smorgasbord of salient snippets.... A flight of fanciful factoids... An avalanche of alliteration... thus, I offer you some thoughts that are on my mind, in no particular order:

Building as Mission Statement
On Sunday, our building team will hold an informational session about the upcoming building renovations - renovations that include adding accessible bathrooms, better ramps and accessible entrances, access to the main sanctuary, a ramp up to the chancel. These changes are important and much needed, for many reasons - including the needs of those who already need a more accessible space, but also for those who may come to our doors needing more accommodations, as well as those members and friends who may someday in the future need them.

More, it becomes an important statement of who we are and what we believe. The architecture of this building speaks of a love of nature, innovations, creativity, and beauty. But it makes some underlying assumptions about who is welcome - accessibility accommodations send a signal, right off the bat, that you actually are welcoming everyone into your space, however they move to get in. Making your spaces accessible tell people without words that 'we built this with you in mind' and 'we want you to enjoy our space as much as we do.' That matters. By investing in this project with your time, talent, and treasure, you are affirming the extravagant welcome that CUUC promises to offer.

This Month's Theme: God
When Rev. Meredith gave me the list of themes for the year, I was simultaneously delighted and daunted by the idea of talking about God with you this month; I'm grateful for the opportunity to share what I hope is a wide-ranging set of resources in On the Journey, as well as a three-part sermon series on Unitarian Universalist understandings about God.

Whatever your reaction to the word "god" - I hope you will engage with curiosity and wonder. The readings and the services are meant to spark your thinking about how you understand your own theology, as well as how we might speak to others about theirs. I invite you to be curious and turn to wonder; if your reaction to this theme is negative, ask yourself "I wonder why I'm reacting this way" and follow those thoughts. Let your inner teacher guide your exploration into your religious past, your current theologies, your assumptions, your stories. I am not saying you will suddenly become a theist if you're an atheist, but I invite you to be curious and open as we look at this topic.

An Incomplete and Utter History of Unitarian Universalism
After a conversation with staff this week, I decided to share one of my favorite things with you - a one-hour survey of the history of our faith, spanning over 2,000 years on a whirlwind, madcap adventure. We'll hold this session after the service on March 8th; I promise it'll be informative and funny.

Eight Weeks Left
Yes, friends, we have just eight weeks left of the sabbatical! We've been doing a lot of good things, with some good stuff still to come. By the beginning of March, we'll be prepping our Welcome Back Rev. Meredith plans and recapping the good work we've begun together. By then, we'll also have a report from the Committee on Ministry's study of our theology and spirituality, a firm plan for the building renovations, be in the midst of a stewardship campaign, and more. I hope you'll spend some time this month thinking about what we've done together - what you've liked, what you haven't - so that you are ready for Rev. Meredith's return.

One Final Note
Thanks to all who sent book recommendations; I have quite a list and will not lack for good reading material.

~ Rev. Kimberley Debus
Your Moment of Zen: Timid and Truthful
Mole had just arrived at Tallspruce. Raven said, "Was there something you wanted to ask?" Mole cleared his throat and asked, "Should I always tell the truth? Sometimes it does more harm than good." Raven said, "then it's not the truth." Mole sighed and was silent. Owl spoke up and asked, "Then should I lie at such a time?" Raven said, "Tell the truth." READ MORE
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