Community Unitarian Universalist Congregation at White Plains, NY
Spirituality   ·   Compassion   ·   Service
"From the Minister," Thu Oct 25 HERE
On the Journey, 2018 Oct: "The American Experiment" HERE
Practice of the Week: Don't Take It Personally /When you think you've been targeted personally, you probably feel worse. The thing is, most of what bumps into us in life-including emotional reactions from others, traffic jams, illness, or mistreatment at work-is like an impersonal log put in motion by ten thousand causes upstream. Recognize the humbling yet...READ MORE.
Religious Education   Last Sunday Michele was pleased to lead the children's worship, and the excitement over Halloween was tangible in all the kids. This Sunday is our Halloween parade, so wear your costumes and plan for Monster Mash fun after worship. This Sunday grades K-5 start in Fellowship Hall for children's worship and music with Lyra, grades 6-12 start in class... READ MORE
From the Music Director  /Día de los Muertos, reinterpreted at CUUC as a time for remembrance and spiritual communion, elicits a wide range of musical expression at Sunday morning's worship service. Mary Lane Cobb performs "When October Goes", an evocation of loss and memory. For the Centering Music, Adam Kent performs the Danza del terror... READ MORE
Upcoming Worship Services
Sun Oct 28, 10:00 AM   
"All Hallow's Eve"
Rev. Meredith Garmon
We'll have our annual ribbons of remembrance observance. And our RE children's Halloween Parade - wear your costumes!   

Sun Oct 28, 10:00 AM   
Rev. Meredith Garmon 
We don't do it to "make a difference." We do it to be a part of something bigger than our selves.  
Our Faith Family
Allan Borows, father of CUUC member Cindy Borows Gazis, passed away in early October. He was 94. Our heart goes out to Cindy and her family.  
Halloween Fun!
"Monster Mash," Sun Oct 28, 11:15am, Red Hallway
Kids, wear you best costume Sunday morning! Parade in the sanctuary, then come to the red pod to enjoy games, activities, and prizes. Hosted by Youth Group.  
Coffee in Fellowship Hall this Sunday
Coffee Hour, Sun Oct 28, 11:15am, Fellowship Hall 
This Sunday, to make more room for our postcard campaign, and to allow after-service activities to start earlier in the sanctuary, we will be enjoying our coffee in Fellowship Hall (instead of the Fireside Area). Join us! 
Visitors & Newcomers Conversations   
Newcomers Conversation, Sun Oct 28, 11:20am, Room 13 
Learn more about Unitarian Universalism, and help us learn more about you. Help yourself to coffee and then meet in the lobby. 
GOTV Postcard Campaign   
"Get Out the Vote" Postcard Writing Campaign, Sun Oct 28, after worship
Stop by our table during coffee hour and fill out a few postcards to remind people to get to the polls on Tue Nov 6 and vote. Help us reach our goal of 200 postcards! 
Thank You from Bedford Correctional!
Thanks to everyone who brought in new toys for the Hour Children holiday program at Bedford Correctional Facility. As an incarcerated mom last year said "I am so grateful to be able to provide my daughter with a gift hand-picked by me. It means so much to me to know that no matter what my current situation may be, that there are people whose hearts are big enough to embrace me and my child." If you missed dropping off a new, unwrapped gift, you can bring in your donation this Sun Oct 28. Contact: Ray Messing (  
Volunteers, Join the Fun Under the Sea !
We can use some help next week... Under the Sea . For our auction, we'll be transforming the sanctuary into an underwater paradise, and creating culinary delights worthy of King Neptune. Just drop by CUUC and jump in whenever you might be available on these days and times: In the sanctuary: Wed Oct 31, 5:00-9:00pm; Thu Nov 1, 10:00 am on; Fri Nov 2, 10:00 am on. In the kitchen: Fri Nov 2, 10:00am-4:00pm; Sat Nov 3, 10:00am-2:00pm.   
Day in Place  
Day in Place, Sat Nov 3, Dawn to Noon, CUUC Building & Grounds
Join the PlaceKeeping community. Choose a spot to create a personal or family legacy of tending. Your favorite tools for weed cutting are welcome! We end after lunch so attendees can prepare for the auction. Contact: Pamela Cucinell (, Bice Wilson (  
EJI Legacy Museum & Memorial   
Presentation: Equal Justice Initiative Summit, Sun Nov 4, 11:30am - 1:00pm, Fellowship Hall
In April 2018, the Equal Justice Initiative Peace and Justice Summit was held in Montgomery, AL, to accompany the opening of EJI's Legacy Museum and Memorial to victims of lynching. A panel of presenters led by Adine Usher will discuss the public and personal impact of attending the summit and experiencing the museum. Hosted by the CUUC Racial Justice Team. Childcare available with reservation by Wed Oct 31 (contact .  
Under the Sea Annual Auction
CUUC Annual Auction, Sat Nov 3, Doors Open 5:30pm, Tickets $45 (Note Correct Price) 
Are you wondering how many sand dollars you might spend if you attend the auction? The answer is: as few or as many as you want! You will always have a chance to join the fun and win fabulous prizes.  
If you want to spend...
$3 - Buy a single Grab Bag ticket!
$10 - Buy a spin on our Wheel of Chance!
$20 - Enter our 50/50 raffle!
$25 and up - Bid on items in our silent auction!
$30 and up - Start your bidding for a seat at our Bid & Bump Dinners!
$40 - Buy a sheet of 25 Grab bag tickets!
$50 and up - Bid on live auction items!
Even if you don't spend anything other than the cost of your ticket, you'll enjoy a scrumptious three-course dinner; a surprise themed cocktail; wine and beverages; childcare, including the Children's Auction; and a guaranteed good time. 
  • Please let us know by this Sun Oct 28 if you will attend.
  • This Sunday is also the last day to let us know about your donation.
  • Beginning this Sunday, you may drop off physical donations at CUUC. Please label and leave in the office.
For tickets, find us at coffee hour or email Chris Kortlandt ( ). We can't wait to go for a swim with you!

Click HERE for information on donations or HERE for a donation form .  
Opportunity for Giving  
Collection for Ecumenical Emergency Food Pantry, Sun Nov 4, during worship
A collection will be taken for Thanksgiving food for the Ecumenical Food Pantry in White Plains, whose all-volunteer staff serve over 1,000 people monthly. Contact: Vicky Van Wert ( 
Did You Know...
Composting is nature's way of recycling. The produce that we eat contains nutrients drawn from the soil and we can restore the nutrients and help protect our air and water by returning what we haven't eaten to the soil in the form of compost. The benefits are many.  Composting keeps discarded food out of landfills, whose runoff is a serious source of water pollution. Composting also reduces the release of methane, which occurs when food decomposes in a landfill environment in the absence of oxygen. And composting keeps food waste out of incinerators; Westchester currently incinerates all unrecycled waste at a facility in Peekskill. Municipalities in Westchester have or will become eligible for County composting facilities. Call your town to let them know you support a robust food scrap recycling program!
General Elections are Tue Nov 6 
Are you ready? The League of Women Voters' Vote411 provides you with all the information you need to make an educated choice: The races, the candidates and where they stand on issues, polling locations, and more. Also check the Gun Sense Candidate Lookup Tool for candidates that support common-sense gun violence prevention. Voters Guides will again be available at CUUC on Sun Oct 28 and Sun Nov 4, courtesy of the LWV Westchester.  
Faith Development Friday  
Faith Development Friday, Fri Nov 9, CUUC
An evening of learning, spiritual growth, and community. 6:15pm Pizza & Salad Community Dinner; 7:00pm Programs;8:30pm Coffee. Programs include Adult RE, Family Journey Group, and Youth Group Gathering. Adults may also just come for a slice and unstructured social time together. All may stay after the programs to share coffee and a chat. RSVP
Music at CUUC
"Robert and Clara: A Domestic Drama," Sun Nov 11, 12:00 pm
Following an enhanced coffee hour, our 2018-19 concert series begins with CUUC Music Director Adam Kent presenting a solo piano recital of works by Robert Schumann that includes cameo appearances by our own Kim Force as Robert's fiancée Clara, and Craig Hunt as Friedrich Wieck, the couple's future father-in-law. Love, jealousy, and secrets abound in the piano music of Schumann. Join us for an insider's view! Free childcare available with advance reservation. Suggested Donation $20; Students/Seniors $10; Children 13 & Under $5; Maximum Family Donation $45. 
Room for One More this Thanksgiving? 
Make a place for an international student! Our congregation is again partnering with One to World to find host families to welcome students to their Thanksgiving dinners. A wonderful experience for both students and hosts! Contact: Jane Dixon ( 
Upcoming Social Justice Actions 
UUA's Love Resists Invites Public Comments on two Administration Proposals: Indefinite Asylum Detention (until Tue Nov 6) and Discriminatory Immigration Evaluations (until Mon Dec 10)
Public comments can influence government policy. To add your voice to the public record against the indefinite detention of the children of asylum seekers (by Tue Nov 6), click HERE . To comment on the "public charge" proposal that would discriminate against legal immigrants based on income and class (by Mon Dec 10), click HERE . Each comment needs to be individual (not a "form letter") so speak from the heart. .
Find more local social justice opportunities HERE.
Share the Plate for October: WCC Student Aid Programs 
Half our non-pledge collection goes to programs supporting low-income students at Westchester Community College (WCC). To help students overcome hardships that could compromise enrollment, WCC has an Emergency Transportation Fund to provide free metro or bus passes when needed, and an Emergency Food Pantry for students facing food insecurity. Last year, they distributed $4,500 in passes, and supplied over 1,000 students and families with healthy foods.
Caring & Sharing Ci rcle

If anyone knows of another among us who is in need of a caregiver, please contact Catherine Kortlandt (914-834-7112, or Astrid Rogers (914-949-0294, 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,
Sat Oct 27 - 9:30am Metro UU Youth Adult Committee; 10:00am Zen

Sun Oct 28 - 9:00am Women's Issues; 9:30am Nursery Care; 10:00am Worship; 11:15am Coffee Hour; 11:15am GOTV Postcard Writing; 11:20am Newcomers' Conversation; 11:30am Halloween Event; 11:30am Concert Rehearsal; 11:40am Auction Committee; 11:45am Building Committee;
12:30pm Rental: Child Blessing; 2:30pm Journey Group - Rev. Joyner

Mon Oct 29 - 6:30pm T'ai-ch'i

Tue Oct 30 - 10:00am Auction Setup; 7:00pm Rental: WCSPP; 7:30pm  Choir Rehearsal

Wed Oct 31 - Auction Setup

Thu Nov 1 - Auction Setup; 9:30am Rental: League of Women Voters;
7:30pm Journey Group Facilitators

Fri Nov 2 - Auction Setup; 12:00pm Auction Food Prep; 6:00pm OWL 5th/6th Grade - Meal; 7:30pm OWL 5th/6th Grade - Class

Sat Nov 3 - 6:00am Day in Place; 10:00am Auction Setup; 10:00am Zen
12:30pm Journey Group Facilitators; 5:30pm Auction Preview; 6:00pm  Auction

Sun Nov 4 - 9:30am Nursery Care; 10:00am Worship; 11:15am Coffee Hour; 11:30am Presentation: Equal Justice Initiative Summit; 2:00pm  Rental: ACT-SO Fundraising Dinner
C ontacts

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,, 212-351-4642
Vice Chair: Al Rocchi,, 914-777-3216
Treasurer: Chris Kortlandt,, 914-834-7112
Social Justice Coordinators
Jeff Tomlinson,
Mary Cavallero,
Pamela Cucinell,
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
From the Minister /Here is what our UUA - our national Unitarian Universalist Association - up through 2016 had to say about Unitarians celebrating Day of the Dead /Dia de los Muertos. The WorshipWeb section of included this:
"Día de los muertos (Day of the Dead) is a festive celebration in memory of those who have died. Its origins in Mesoamerica go back over 3,000 years, even though it was shaped by two Roman Catholic holidays: All Saints Day (Nov 1) and All Souls Day (Nov 2). In Spanish, All Saints Day and All Souls Day are known as El Día de Todos los Santos and El Día de los Muertos, respectively. In southern and central Mexico, Día de los muertos entails many traditions: building private altars called ofrendas, honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed, and visiting graves with these as gifts. Visitors also leave possessions of the deceased at the graves. Some themes: remembrance, grief, cycle of life and death, honoring those who have gone before us. As a matter of cultural competency, WorshipWeb encourages our Unitarian Universalist congregations to use the Spanish name 'Día de los muertos,' rather than translating it into "Day of the Dead" in church announcements, programs, emails, etc. There are many holidays that retain their native language (Yom Kippur, Kwanzaa, Rosh Hashanah, etc.), and we seek to make this one of them."
However, as I noted in our service in October 2016:
"There has been a conversation going on among Unitarian Universalists and in wider society about cultural appropriation - if and when and how to borrow from another culture's traditions -- the boundaries around what is 'our culture' and thus 'ours' are not clear. Samhain is a Gaelic, European holiday - so it feels more like 'ours' even though many of us never set foot there. It's tricky territory, and we negotiate it carefully."
Not only is it tricky and difficult, it's also rapidly evolving territory. The sense of what is acceptable and what isn't is contentious and fraught, and changing. By 2017, the UUA site had added a note that wasn't there the year before:
"This holy day is a distinctly Mexican holiday, though some in other Latin American countries have adopted it. For that reason, it's neither respectful nor appropriate for white congregations to initiate its celebration in worship. In the words of Rev. Marisol Caballero, 'When white people "celebrate" el Día de Los Muertos not as the personal, invited guest of Mexicans, it feels to me like someone has crashed a family funeral or a wake.' To learn more about why UU congregations celebrating this day encroaches on the hurtful territory of cultural appropriation, please take the time to review the video in the sidebar."
The referenced video runs one hour, and is titled "Decentering Whiteness in Worship." I am not sure what to think about all this, but I am thinking about it, and I hope you will also as we grow and learn and adapt together. In any case, even though we never did attempt to enact any of the rituals of Dia de los Muertos, we titled the service "Dia de los Muertos" from 2013-2016. Our aim was to acknowledge, recognize and respectfully honor the customs from other lands. Still, starting in 2017,  we've changed the title to All Hallows' Eve.

Yours in faith,
The Liberal Pulpit /New this week: Index of past sermons: HERE. Index of other reflections: HERE. Videos of sermons are on the Liberal Pulpit Youtube Channel: HERE
Your Moment of Zen: Gossip /Porcupine was leading an orientation to the practice when Mockingbird dropped in. During the question period he said, "I have a tendency to gossip. I know it can be hurtful, yet I can't seem to stop." Porcupine said, "It's fun." Mockingbird said, "Yes, but at the expense of others." Porcupine said, "Dirt is dirt!"...READ MORE
Zen at CUUC: Oct 26-Nov 1
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