Community Unitarian Universalist Congregation at White Plains, NY
Spirituality   ·   Compassion   ·   Service
This week's From the Minister - HERE
On the Journey: Simplicity (2019 Jan) - HERE
Practice of the Week: Across the Wide Universe We can use understanding about the unity and immensity of it all to recapture some of the wonder that tends to get lost in our technological age. We can reconnect with the wide-eyed awe that is our birthright. We aren't the center of the universe in the way that we thought before, but we are a part of something so much bigger....READ MORE.
Religious Education  We had Mother Nature display her personal handiwork of diversity in our weather last Sunday. Depending on your location, you saw rain, freezing rain, snow, sleet, to simply, poof... nothing!  RE This Sunday: Grades K-7 start in the sanctuary for Music For All Ages and Wonder Box Story. Grades 8-12 start in classrooms.   READ MORE.
From the Music Director  Someone's turning 263 today, even though he doesn't look a day over 262!  Happy birthday, Mozart! Join us at 10 am for a Music for All Ages presentation, featuring Christian and Tycho Force and Music Director Adam Kent. The CUUC Choir is also on hand with messages of hope and joy, warming hearts in this coldest of seasons... READ MORE.
Upcoming Worship Services

Sun Jan 27, 10:00 AM
"God is Not One"  
Rev. Meredith Garmon
Do the world's religions represent different paths up the same mountain? Or are they climbing entirely different mountains? Service starts at 10 AM with a special Music for All Ages celebrating Mozart's birthday, featuring Christian and Tycho Force and Music Director Adam Kent
Sun Jan 20, 10:00 AM 
"Creature Comforts" 
Rev. Meredith Garmon
It turns out "What does it mean to be human?" (i.e., what separates us from other animals?) isn't nearly as important for our self-understanding as "What does it mean to be animal?" (i.e., what is our commonality with other animals?) As we begin to explore the Desire theme, we'll look at the desires animals (including us) share.
Chili Community Meal 
Chili Community Meal, Sun Jan 27, 11:30am, Fellowship Hall 
The heat of chili and the warmth of community. Hosted by the 4th-5th and 6th-7th grade classes to support their social justice projects. Please email if you would like to bring a pot of chili to support the class. Cost: $5 per Adult, $3 per child, $15 max per family.  
Newcomers' Conversation   
Newcomers' Conversation, Sun Jan 27, 11:20am, Fellowship Hall 
Learn more about Unitarian Universalism, and help us learn more about you. We invite you to enjoy our chili community meal and then meet in the sanctuary. Contact: Jane Dixon (  
Nominations Wanted
Board of Trustees Nominations, Deadline Sun Feb 10
Do you know someone who would make a great addition to the CUUC Board of Trustees? A CUUC member that has demonstrated leadership within our Congregation either as a member of a committee or initiative or as a teacher? The Nominating and Leadership Development Committee will be identifying nominees for election to the Board at the Annual Meeting in June, and invite you to participate in the process! Instructions are HERE, and application forms are available in the lobby or HERE. Forms may also be downloaded from our website, Self-nominations encouraged! Application deadline is Sun Feb 10. Contact: David Bowen (
Intercultural Sensitivity Follow-Up
On Sat Oct 26, 2018, CUUC members participated in a workshop on the Developmental Model of Intercultural Sensitivity (DMIS). Sponsored by the Board of Trustees, the workshop was led by Rev. Erica Baron, who gave an interactive presentation designed to approach diversity and inclusion through the lens of intercultural competence. A summary of the workshop, including participant feedback, is now available on the website HERE. Many thanks to Joe Majsak for his work creating the summary!  
Congregational Survey
This year the Committee on Ministry is evaluating our Social Justice Program. Please help by completing our survey. Pick up a copy this Sunday, or download it HERE to print at home. Return completed surveys to any COM member (Carol Selinske, Randy Marshall, Tom Wacht, Denice Tomlinson, or Claire Kuczinski), or leave in the CUUC office. Or take the survey online by clicking HERE . The deadline for submitting is Sun Feb 3. Contact: Randy Marshall (
Ways to Help Federal Workers
As the government shutdown continues, up to 800,000 federal government employees are struggling to survive without a paycheck. Click HERE for a list of non-profits and other organizations that accept donations and can provide more information on ways to help. Many thanks for Carole Mehta for compiling! 
Special Friends Sign Up 
Join our pen pal program that anonymously matches students in Religious Ed and adults in the congregation so we get to know one another better. Exchange six letters over nine weeks, then meet at the Canvass Community Meal on Sun Mar 31. To sign up, see Michele on Sunday or email  
Backpack Drive - Last Sunday!
The Brighter Futures After-School Mentoring Program  needs large strong backpacks. "Sponsor" a backpack and we will shop for you! $45 = backpack + supplies; $30 = backpack; smaller amounts = supplies. Or purchase notebooks or pens/pencil packs to donate. We collect throughout January. Flyer HERE. Contact: Amy Swiss (
From the Treasurer
Tax statements for 2018 are ready and may be picked up in the CUUC office this Sun Jan 27. Any statements not picked up will be mailed out before the end of the month. Contact: Diane Pearson, bookkeeper (, 914-946-1660 x5) or Chris Kortlandt, treasurer (, 917-821-4289).
Wise Aging Group 
Wise Aging Group, Tue Jan 29, 3:00pm, Fireside
Join our new discussion group where we explore aging as a personal and spiritual practice, and support one another in our journeys. We will follow the book, Wise Aging: Living with Joy, Resilience, and Spirit. We will meet this week in the Fireside Area. Contact: Rev. LoraKim Joyner ( 
Day in Place   
Day in Place, Sat Feb 2, Sunrise to Sunset
Join the PlaceKeepers to appreciate, improve, and maintain the building and grounds of CUUC, our physical and spiritual home. Celebrate the ancient holy day of Imbolc. Come visit the Spirit Fire. Help tend our springs and our paths. Walk the Path That Connects. Come any time between sunrise and sunset. Contact: Bice Wilson ( 
Sustainable Energy Forum  
Energy Forum: Power of Choice, Sun Feb 3, 11:30am, Fellowship Hall
Energy expert Karl Rábago talks about today's energy markets and the electric grid, at our second annual Environmental Practices Forum. An executive at government and academic energy and climate programs, If you wish to attend and would like childcare, RSVP to by Wed Jan 30. Coffee and light vegetarian lunch served. 
UUs in the News   
CUUC member Tara James and son Jeremiah appear with Mayor Mike Spano on the cover of the recently released 2019 City of Yonkers Recycling & Refuse Guide. Check it out HERE. Thanks Tara for helping promote care for our environment!
Outside Events at CUUC  
Film Screening: A Better Life, Fri Feb 1, 7:30 pm, Fellowship Hall
The Westchester Center for the Study of Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy (WCSPP), partnering with Neighbors Link, will host a screening of the film A Better Life , about an illegal immigrant trying to make a better life for his teenage son. Join us for the viewing and conversation with Carola Ortero Bracco, executive director of Neighbors Link. RSVP to Irene Studwell ( ). 
2018-19 UUA Common Read 
Our "Common Read" this year is Justice on Earth: People of Faith Working at the Intersections of Race, Class, and Environment. This anthology presents a powerful and penetrating look at environmental justice by key UU thinkers and activists. Discount copies are available to purchase for $15 after worship.
Social Justice Opportunities
"Breakfast" Run, Sun Feb 3, 2019, 7:00am, First Unitarian Society, Hastings
Come help us prepare food, pack clothes, and distribute and interact with the homeless in NYC. Breakfast Runs are the perfect time to introduce kids and youth to the practice of service to others, so join us, families! Donations of food and clothing (especially men's long underwear) most appreciated! Contact: Art Lowenstein (
Find more local social justice opportunities HERE.
Share the Plate for January: Interfaith Council for New Americans (ICNA)
For the past year, CUUC has been actively supporting an Afghan refugee family as part of the Interfaith Council for New Americans (ICNA), a coalition of several Westchester congregations that provides welcome and support to refugees being resettled in our area. The ICNA is preparing for new endeavors in 2019, including the possible arrival of another family. To learn more or to join the CUUC Refugee Resettlement team, contact Robin Rocchi ( or Jane Dixon (
Caring & Sharing Circle

If anyone knows of another among us who is in need of a caregiver, please contact Anita Mann (914-819-7751, or her backup Barbara Mair (914-769-7186, 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,
Fri Jan 25 - 7:30pm Choir Rehearsal

Sat Jan 26 - 8:00am Rental: Rug Hookers; 10:00am Food Prep for Community Meal; 10:00am Zen

Sun Jan 27 - 8:45am Choir Rehearsal; 9:00am Hunger & Homelessness; 9:30am Nursery Care; 10:00am Worship; 11:20am Newcomers' Conversation; 11:30am Chili Sunday Meal; 11:40am Sunday Journey Groups; 11:40am Music Committee; 11:40am Nominating Committee; 2:30pm Journey Group - Rev. Joyner
Mon Jan 28 - 6:30pm T'ai-ch'i
Tue Jan 29 - 3:00pm Wise Aging Group; 7:00pm Rental: WCSPP; 7:30pm Choir Rehearsal
Wed Jan 30 - 7:30pm Committee on Ministry
Fri Feb 1 - 7:30pm Rental: WCSPP Film Night
Sat Feb 2 - 6:00am Day in Place; 9:00am Rental: WCSPP; 10:00am Zen; 12:30pm Journey Group Facilitators; 2:30pm Rental: WCHJ
Sun Feb 3 - 9:30am Nursery Care; 10:00am Worship; 11:15am Coffee Hour
11:30am Sustainable Energy Forum: Power of Choice      

Minister: Rev. Meredith Garmon,, 914-946-1660 x3
Director of Faith Development: Perry Montrose,, 914-946-1660 x4
Coordinator of Religious Education: Michele Rinaldi,, 914-946-1660 x4
Community Minister: Rev. Deb Morra,, 914-830-1509
Community Minister: Rev. LoraKim Joyner,
Youth Program Coordinator: Chandeerah Davis,  
Music Director: Adam Kent,, 212-595-7280
Choir Director: Lisa Meyer,
Congregational & Communications Administrator: Pamela Parker,, 914-946-1660 x2
Bookkeeper: Diane Pearson,, 914-946-1660 x5
Board of Trustees
Board Chair: Dean Silverberg,
Vice Chair: Al Rocchi,
Treasurer: Chris Kortlandt,
Social Justice Coordinators
Jeff Tomlinson,
Mary Cavallero,
Rev. Meredith Garmon,
Quick Links

On The Journey (current and past issues)
Social Justice Teams
Practice of the Week (current and all past)
The Quarterly Communitarian
CUUC Main Web Site
Liberal Pulpit Index
The Liberal Pulpit Video
Boundless Way Zen of Westchester
The Liberal Pulpit New: Index of past sermons: HERE. Index of other reflections: HERE. Videos of sermons are on the Liberal Pulpit Youtube Channel: HERE
This week I'm reflecting on Peggy Clarke and Matthew McHale's essay, "Becoming Resilient: Community Life for a New Age" - Chapter 6 of the 2018-19 UUA Common Read, Justice on Earth: People of Faith Working at the Intersections of Race, Class and the Environment.

The prophetic task, the authors note, is not merely to decry injustice. It's more broadly about nurturing, nourishing, and evoking, an alternative community. The essay then develops in two parts:

1. Resilience-based organizing. Here we learn about Movement Generation, which offers trainings, resources, and support to social movements led by communities of color or low income. Movement Generation's organizing approach is rooted in community "in a way that reorients power to be more local and democratic."

The approach is inspired by such examples as the Black Panthers and MST (Brazil's Landless Workers Movement -- Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra). The Black Panthers' less famous programs provided services such as free breakfast for school children, free medical clinics and drug rehab, clothing distribution, and classes on politics and economics. In Brazil, MST peacefully occupies unused land, securing it for the dispossessed. MST sets up cooperative farms, constructs houses, schools, and clinics while working for environmental sustainability and promoting Indigenous culture and gender equality.

2. Congregations as centers for community resilience. "Houses of worship will need to become centers of hope and resilience." Doing this will entail congregational engagement with the communities around us -- offering meeting places and shelter, learning centers for reskilling, among other things. "We can start by identifying local 'front-line communities' - low-income communities and communities of color who bear the brunt of the devastation of the modern industrial system and who are leaders in the struggle to shift toward a more just and sustainable future." Once such a prospective community is identified, the congregation's task is solidarity, listening, relationship-building, humility, and a willingness to take on a support role when asked - NOT to expect to swoop in as the savior or the experts.

The authors conclude: "Without authentic partnership and without clearly understanding the systemic transformation required, our response to the current climate crisis will be insufficient. . . . Building resilient communities is the transformative response these times demand."

What communities around CUUC are most directly affected by issues in which environment and race come together? How might CUUC develop a relationship of solidarity with those communities?

One response to the essay might be: "I'm convinced that we need to commit ourselves to supporting and nurturing communities of resilience. But I don't see any need for congregations. Congregations should simply fold - transferring their land, buildings, and members' energy to organizations like Movement Generation." How would you respond to this suggestion? The members of a support network for resilient community would share a kind of "secular faith" - is that faith enough?

Yours in faith,
Your Moment of Zen: Unhappy Raven met Grouse moping around one day and asked, "How's it going, Grouse?" Grouse said, "I'm so unhappy." Raven said, "What do you think might make you happy?" Grouse said, "I don't know. I don't ask for much." Raven said, "Way too much."
Zen at CUUC, Sat Jan 26: SEE HERE
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