Community Unitarian Universalist Congregation at White Plains, NY
Spirituality   ·   Compassion   ·   Service
November issue of On the Journey: Compassion -- Click HERE
This week's post from the Sabbatical Minister HERE 
Practice of the Week: See Everything As a Dream This is a physiological fact: the brain registers experience a moment after the experience has happened. Life actually, scientifically, is a kind of illusion. It's very hard to actually put your finger on experience. And the closer you look, the stranger it gets. When you investigate it, the oddness of it all comes home to you. Life is like a dream... READ MORE
Daylight Saving Time ends this weekend so remember to "fall back"! Then join us for whole congregation worship. Adam invites our young people to find a nook under or near the piano during centering music (10:00-10:10am) and experience the music close-up. During worship, a children's area is available and there will be a special children's order of service to help them follow along. RE classes and youth group do not meet... READ MORE
Catalan composer Federico Mompou's first published work, a suite of pieces for solo piano entitled Impresiones íntimas (Intimate Impressions), provide the perfect musical
embodiment of loving compassion envisioned in this Sunday's service... READ MORE
Upcoming Worship Services  
Sun Nov 3, 10:00am
" These Three"
Rev. Kimberley Debus, sabbatical minister
How do we understand compassion as a spiritual gift? How do we understand the call to love our neighbor and all of humankind in these challenging times? Together we'll explore the power of love and compassion. We will also recognize our newest members.  
Sun Nov 10, 10:00am
"The Compassionate Life"
Rev. Kimberley Debus, sabbatical minister
What do the world's religions say about compassion? How do we apply these lessons today?

Our CUUC YouTube Channel has videos of many past services. Check it out HERE!
Daylight Savings Time Ends    
We "fall back" this weekend. Reset your clocks back one hour before you go to bed Sat night so you can enjoy your extra rest and arrive at CUUC at 10:00am (not 9:00am) on Sunday morning. While you're checking time, also c heck smoke alarm batteries. White Plains residents may qualify for free detectors - click HERE.  
Day in Place 
Day in Place, Sat Nov 2, Sunrise to Sunset
Join the PlaceKeepers to appreciate, improve, and maintain the building and grounds of CUUC, our spiritual home. Contact: Terri Kung (
NAACP Jazz Concert 
NAACP Jazz Cabaret Evening, Sat Nov 2, 6:00pm, CUUC Sanctuary  
A special evening with jazz pianist Julius Rodriguez, four-time NAACP ACT-SO National Medalist. Special guest performance by Samara Joy McLendon. Tickets HERE. Contact:
LGBTQIA Presentation 
"The Incomplete Guide to Trans & Non-Binary Identities" with Tony Arrien, Sun Nov 3, 11:40am, Fellowship Hall  
Gain insight into the complexities of gender, learn new info and terminology, and find out how to be a better ally to transgender people. Refreshments served. See flyer HERE. Contact: Tony Arrien ( 
Add a Ribbon of Remembrance
The remembrance ribbons from our worship service are now in the lobby along with markers and extra ribbons. We invite everyone who so wishes to write the name of someone you want to honor and add it to our display.

Opportunities for Giving
Ecumenical Emergency Food Pantry: Cash donations are especially needed this time of year. Bring checks on Sunday or mail to Ecumenical Food Pantry, PO Box 2037, White Plains, NY 10602. Contact: Vicky Van Wert (
Hour Children's Center at Bedford Correctional: We are collecting NEW UNWRAPPED toys on Nov 3 and Nov 10. See the center's wish list HERE. Contact: Ray Messing (
Gently Used Toy Collection for clients of the Ecumenical Food Pantry: Bring gently used toys, and new or like-new stuffed animals, for collection Nov 3 - Dec 1. See flyer HERE. Contact: Mary Cavallero (  
Pledge Reminder   
Have you sent your pledge yet? 
If you haven't already, please submit your pledge form and begin making payments, to keep our CUUC operations running smoothly. Note: for some, prepaying your pledge before year end may have tax advantages. Contact Chris Kortlandt (  
Call for Vendors 
Holiday Arts & Crafts Fundraiser, Sun Dec 8, 11:30am, Fireside 
If you are interested in selling your crafts at our annual fair, contact Barbara Youngman ( Proceeds support the Minister's Discretionary Fund.
Two Weeks and Counting!    
Here's the Auction 2019 lowdown: Tickets are $45 through Sun Nov 10 or $50 after. * Reserve childcare by Sun Nov 10. * Decide what you'll donate and drop off your items and forms to the lobby or office now! * On Sunday, drop your loose change into our jar for more auction items. Auction Preview: Tickets to West Side Story and Jagged Little Pill on Broadway * VIP tickets to "Live with Kelly & Ryan" show * Mets tickets * Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival tickets * Dinner at the Russian Tea Room followed by a show at Carnegie Hall * A ride to the airport * Food shop on Arthur Avenue with a pro * Alvin Ailey Dance tickets * Wine tasting events * Excel software consulting * One-of-a-kind handcrafted jewelry, artwork, and designer fashion items * Amazing Bid & Bump dinner opportunities hosted by CUUCers * A vacation home in Rhode Island * and so much more. JOIN US! Click HERE for a printable donation form. Auction 2019, Sat Nov 16, Doors open 5:30pm, advance tickets $45 until Nov 10, or $50 at the door. 
Environmental News 
Community solar projects provide solar electricity at a savings, typically 10%, without you having to install solar panels. Sign up with a solar provider for electricity and you receive a credit from your electric utility. Solarize Westchester and NYSERDA have more info. Visit  
Worship Associate Training
Worship Associate Training, Saturday, Nov 23, 10:00am - 3:00pm, UU Fellowship of Northern Westchester, Mt. Kisco 
Join Rev. Kimberley Debus to explore the qualities of open-hearted and expansive worship, including approaches to choosing service elements, refining skills, and working as part of your congregation's team. Register HERE. 
Election Day is Tue Nov 5 
What's on your ballot? Go to  to find out. Enter your address and you'll see a personalized ballot with the races and issues in your district. Compare candidates side-by-side and read their views on the important issues in their own words.

No Dance Class Wed Nov 6  
CUUC Dance Movement Class, Wednesdays, 8:00am-9:00am, Fireside 
We're off next week, so put your feet up and relax. After that, join the Past Prime Dancers Wed mornings for movement, music, and fun. Contact: Terri Kung (
Midnight Run 
Midnight Run, Fri Nov 8, 7:00pm, First Unitarian Society, Hastings 
Help prepare food, pack clothes, and distribute and interact with our neighbors who are homeless in NYC. You can also support with donations (learn more HERE). Contact: Irene Jong ( 
Religious Education News 
Each religious education class now receives its own e-newsletter with the info families need to know. If you are an RE family or volunteer and did not receive your newsletter, first check your spam folder, then contact Tracy Breneman (  
Youth Relationships Retreat Cancelled  
The Healthy Youth Relationships Retreat scheduled for Sun Nov 3 has been cancelled. We will continue to look into future ways to support and connect with the LGBTQ youth community and allies at Center Lane
Interfaith Opportunity 
Can you volunteer to represent CUUC at meetings of the Interfaith Council of White Plains? Board meetings are six time a year, and member congregations take turns hosting. A wonderful opportunity to connect with dedicated people from other faith communities. Call Vicky Van Wert (914-363-9108).
Room for One More?    
Make a place at your Thanksgiving table for an international student. We partner with One to World to find host families who will welcome students into their holiday celebrations. A memorable experience for both students and hosts! Contact: Jane Dixon ( 
Inclusivity Project   

Our challenge goal of 2019-20 is Inclusion. The Board has drafted an Inclusion Statement, and we invite all the congregation to engage with us as we act on the challenges it contains. Learn more HERE.
District Happenings - October 2019
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 November: Ecumenical Food Pantry 
This month half our non-pledge collection goes to the Ecumenical Emergency Food Pantry of White Plains. Founded in 1979 by CUUC and four other local congregations, the pantry began as a temporary response to individuals with food insecurity. But the team found the need never vanished - it just increased. Today the pantry operates 51 weeks a year supplying nutritious food to over 250 families a month with support from several congregations across faith traditions. CUUC has continuously contributed with both funds and volunteers, including Vicky Van Wert and the late Lucille Ross who both worked tirelessly at the pantry for many years .  
Caring & Sharing Circle
If anyone knows of another among us who is in need of a caregiver, please contact Catherine Kortlandt (914-834-7112, or Claire Kuczinski (914-949-6619, Or you may 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 Nov 1 - 7:00pm Youth Group (14)
Sat Nov 2 - 6:00am Day in Place (CUUC Grounds); 9:00am Rental: Exercise (Fireside); 10:00am Zen (43); 1:00pm Journey Group Facilitators (Parsonage); 5:00pm Rental: NAACP Setup (Sanctuary); 6:00pm Rental: NAACP Jazz Cabaret Fundraiser (Sanctuary)
Sun Nov 3 - 8:45am Choir Rehearsal (Sanctuary); 9:30am Nursery Care (32); 10:00am Worship (Sanctuary); 11:15am Coffee Hour (Fireside); 11:30am Auction Committee (13); 11:40am Presentation: LGBTQIA Team (Fellowship Hall); 11:40am Committee on Ministry (41)
Mon Nov 4 - 5:00pm Rental: Exercise (Fireside); 6:30pm T'ai-ch'i (Fireside); 7:00pm Rental: Straight Spouse Network (41); 8:00pm Rental: Amnesty International (41)
Tue Nov 5 - 10:00am Rental: Exercise (Fireside); 1:00pm Rental: The Joy of Watercolor (Fireside); 7:00pm Rental: WCSPP (Classes); 7:30pm Choir Rehearsal (Sanctuary)
Wed Nov 6 - 11:00am Rev. Kimberley Debus Open Office Hours (Study); 7:30pm Program Council (41)
Thu Nov 7 - 9:30am Rental: League of Women Voters (41); 3:00pm Rev. Kimberley Debus Open Office Hours (Study); 7:30pm Journey Group Facilitators (Fireside)
Fri Nov 8 - 11:00am Journey Group - Rev. Garmon/Rev. Debus (Parsonage); 7:00pm Rental: WCSPP Film Night (Fellowship Hall)
Sat Nov 9 - 10:00am Zen (43); 1:00pm Rental: WCBNY (41)
Sun Nov 10 - 9:00am Environmental Practices (13); 9:30am Nursery Care (32); 10:00am Worship (Sanctuary); 11:15am Coffee Hour (Fireside); 11:30am Auction Committee(13); 11:40am Racial Justice/ITSOT (31)    

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
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
Be Kind

How many of you grew up watching Mister Rogers' Neighborhood - or showed it to your children as they were growing up? I was born at just the right time - I was 4 when it first appeared on our local PBS station - the perfect age for this unique show. And paired with Sesame Street, which came out at the same time, this little white girl from a rural community in Rensselaer County was suddenly learning about towns and cities, counting and spelling (in both English and Spanish), what other people looked like, what it meant to use our imagination, and what it meant to be a neighbor. And I recently thought about how important it was to hear these messages in the wake of the King assassination, in the midst of the Vietnam War, in the restlessness of the country - something I as a small child knew nothing about except that things seemed wrong and some of my schoolmates' dads never came home.

Fred Rogers, this gentle Presbyterian minister from Pittsburgh, was never a parish minister, but rather went into the community - the community of television, and children - an alien land, to be sure. The grounding of his faith and his local congregation allowed him to flourish as he brought these incredible messages of care, support, openness, intimate justice, and kindness to not just children but their parents.

I don't think it's a mistake that Mr. Rogers is resonating so deeply right now. The lessons he was teaching us - and is still teaching us - help ground us when we feel utterly ungrounded. They are there for the taking - these things that Unitarian minister Robert Fulghum also reminded us that we learned in Kindergarten - how to be kind and how to share, and how to forgive, and how to take care of ourselves and each other.

And we need these reminders. Too often, I fear, we get so caught up in the hustle and bustle - and lately, existential anxiety - that we forget to pay attention to others. We forget that while we are the lead characters in our own stories, we are but bit players and maybe just background extras in the stories of other people. So many times, it seems, other people try to upstage us with their ideas, opinions, and criticisms - or worse, we upstage them as if we're more important or valued. It's no wonder Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood continues to be so important. The ministry of Rogers focused on teaching children how to live out the assertion that we have inherent worth and dignity just by being human, and how we are all worth care and consideration. Mr. Rogers's ministry continues to teach us that if we have any hope of changing the world, it starts with us.

It matters how we treat each other, how we support each other, how we hold one another in care, how we hold one another to our responsibilities to others and the earth. Our Universalism teaches us that hell is on earth and we are here to love the Hell out of the World - we do that by how we love, how we act, how we live. If we have any chance of building this world from love, or we must ground ourselves as people of compassion, openness, and a willingness to be genuinely kind.

This month we'll be exploring the topic of compassion, which I think begins with a focus on kindness. In the TV show The Good Place, we hear over and over the question "what do we owe to each other?" and the answer to me is kindness. Grace. Compassion.

We can all be kind. We are called to be kind. And in our individual acts of kindness, we make a difference. As Unitarian minister Edward Everett Hale wrote, "I am only one, but I am still one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do."

Kindness is how we live into covenant with one another. Kindness is how we change the world, one compassionate act at a time.

~ Rev. Kimberley Debus
Your Moment of Zen: Metaphor
As they got better acquainted, Raven would ride on Brown Bear's back as Brown Bear foraged for food. When they were setting out one day, Raven asked, "Do you teach exclusively with metaphor?" Brown Bear said, "The robin sings in the oak tree; the finch sings in the madrone." Raven asked, "What do they stand for?" Brown Bear turned her head to look at Raven and... READ MORE
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