Miami Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

8690 Yankee St.  Dayton, OH  45458





MVUUF Building by Lew Hann

MVUUF Forum  August 1-15, 2012

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Letter from the Minister


"Working is praying, making love is praying, being alone is praying, washing dishes is praying, reading a book is praying, spending a moment taking time to observe one small flower is praying, being alone with others is praying, being together with strangers is praying, meditating on a single word is praying, singing is praying, listening is praying, living between the Now and Eternity is praying. If we live well we pray: if we pray we live well."


John Morgan, UU minister sees all these things and more as prayer. I guess I've been spending my summer praying. Sometimes it feels like I've been praying too fast and I need to slow down a little. Then when I slow down, I can hear the prayer in the midst of the activity. I listen for my heartbeat. I listen for the Universe's heartbeat. Then I try to give thanks for my heart being in resonance with the Universe. This is prayer.



~Rev. Amy Russell


Sermon Topics


August 5 - Letting the Cracks Show Rev. Amy Russell
~Much of life seems to be about preventing things from breaking; trying to hold things together. What if we could give that up and let the pieces fall where they may? What if we even let things break and just let the cracks show?


August 12 - All Or Nothing; Selling Out or Settling Rev. Amy Russell
~When we examine the decisions we make in our lifestyle that we know will impact the environment, how do we find "just the right place" so that we are neither selling out or settling? Dane and Priscilla Mutter posed to this me as their Service Auction selection. In examining this question, we'll discuss ways we make these decisions both implicitly and explicitly every day.


August 19 - Letters from the Earth A Dramatic Reading from Members of the Congregation, Directed by Joel Araujo

~Letters from the Earth, by Mark Twain, is written from the point of view of archangel Satan to the archangels Gabriel and Michael, describing the curious creature of humankind that God created. We'll present a sampling of this satire in all its humorous and irreverent glory.


August 26 - Sufism Beyond Self  Rev. Mitra Jafarzadeh
~Join us as we explore the intersection of Sufism mysticism and social justice work so that we might be stronger and more humble in our convictions. Rev. Jafarzadeh, a UU minister, brings her unique blend of Kentucky Baptist and Persian Moslem background to the conversation.


Keeping Up With Our Members


Lynn Haven had back surgery on July 21 and is recovering. Please send her your thoughts and prayers as she goes through this process. Cards may be sent to 1956 N. Fairfield Rd. #121 Dayton, 45432. Get well soon!


Don Ferguson underwent lung surgery on July 26. Please send many healing thoughts his way! Cards may be sent to 44 Savoy Ave. West Carrollton, 45449.

Around the Fellowship


Daytime Book Club Title*
August 22 - Body and Soul, by Frank Conroy

 September 19 - State of Wonder: A Novel, by Ann Patchett

 October 24 - Nightwoods: A Novel, by Charles Frazier
*We meet one Wednesday a month, at 10:30 a.m., in the Fellowship Library. We then go out for lunch together. All are welcome!


Community Discussion Group*
August 5 - "Eureka! Moments based on the book, Snap, Seizing Your Aha Moments." Moderator: Lindy McDonough

August 12 - "Reasonable Force or Police Brutality: Whose Call?" Moderator: Roger Davis

August 19 - "How Do We 'Pay It Forward?' - Personal Missions." Moderator: Diane Bohlander

August 26 - "What Customers Should Know When Having Their Vehicle Serviced at a Repair Shop or Dealership - An Insider's View." Moderator: John Porter

*This adult group meets every Sunday at 9:30 a.m. in the Founders room for fellowship and thought-provoking discussions led by member volunteers. For a more detailed listing of topics, please see the Sunday bulletin.


Evening Book Club
Please join us at 7:00 p.m. on the second Tuesday of the month at Christopher's Restaurant (2318 Dorothy Ln., Kettering).   For more information, contact Ann Snively.
August 14 - Year of Wonders, by Geraldine Brooks
September 11 - The Human Stain, by Philip Roth
October 9 - Beneath the Lion's Gaze, by Maaza Mengiste


Environmental Learning Book Club

The MVUUF Environmental Learning Book Club will meet in the Founders room at 7:00 p.m. on Mon., August 20, to discuss The Creation: An Appeal to Save Life on Earth, by world-renowned Harvard biologist and two time Pulitzer Prize winner Edward O. Wilson. The London Times has hailed Wilson as "one of the greatest men alive!" In Creation, he makes an impassioned plea for scientists and religious leaders to join forces to preserve Earth's rapidly vanishing biodiversity. Plan to be with us for what should be a spirited discussion of Wilson's national bestseller on the importance of preserving our natural heritage. For a copy of the book, contact Environmental Action Group chairman Gary Courts at 436-1094 or  


Humanitarian Giving
During August, the Humanitarian Giving donation will be Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region. For nearly 82 years, Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region (PPSWO) is the leading reproductive health care provider, educator and advocate for Southwest Ohio and Northern Kentucky communities. Our 9 health centers provide a wide range of reproductive health care services to tens of thousands of women and men who rely upon our services and our people. Our unique position as a vital part of the community has earned us the trust of our patients and more than 20,000 donors, supporters and advocates. As the region's most trusted reproductive health care provider and an integral part of the Southwest Ohio and Northern Kentucky health care safety net, PPSWO tirelessly advocates on behalf of our patients and also the thousands who unfortunately go without needed health care services. We believe publicly supported reproductive health care is critical to the health of our shared communities, therefore PPSWO strives to form partnerships with fellow health care providers, government and non-profit organizations.


Chalice Light Gallery
Mike Marko was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. He received his BSC in Mechanical Engineering from University of Manitoba in 1990 and his Masters in the same field in 1994. He is currently living in Cincinnati and is working as a Department Staff Engineer at GE Aviation. He specializes in acrylic and graphite art. He attended summer art camp at the International Peace Gardens for four years during high school. In the final year of high school, he had a difficult time deciding between pursuing Engineering or Graphic Design. When he completed his Engineering degree, he spent less time on paintings and more time on painting 1 inch tall miniatures for which he has won several awards. Over the past year, he has returned to painting acrylic on canvas. This is his first exhibition of his work. You can contact him at  Please enjoy!


August is looking to be a very exciting and busy month for us! On August 8 at 7:00 p.m, we will be having our first open ritual here at the fellowship for the end of summer cross-quarter sabbat, also known as Lughnasadh or Lammas. This is open to all members of the fellowship and will be followed by light snacks and time to socialize with the group and maybe a bonfire if

weather permits. Then on August 12 at 12:30 p.m. we will have our next discussion group, topic and moderator TBA in Classroom 1. Finally on August 25 at 7:00 p.m., we will have a Labyrinth History and Creation workshop. This will be an interactive workshop about labyrinths, their history and how to create one and be led by Shannon Heather. From 7-9 p.m. will be the

workshop and creation of the labyrinth and from 9 p.m. - midnight there will be the chance to walk and mediate in the labyrinth. Again, all of our events are open to the MVUUF community, feel free to pop in at any time. If you need more information, feel free to stop Shannon Heather or Laura V. in the fellowship or send an email to and we will get back to you.


Lunch with Amy Resumes!

Rev. Amy is back from her study break, so lunch at Second Street Market in Downtown Dayton continues! Everyone is welcome to join her on Thursdays at 11:30 a.m.


Vegetarian Cookbook

As part of the Green Sanctuary Project, the Environmental Concerns Committee will be making a cookbook of vegetarian and/or locally produced foods. Whenever you bring a dish to the Fellowship for any occasion, and it is either vegetarian or made with locally grown foods, please bring a copy of the recipe along with the place annotated where you purchased (or grew) the ingredients, to the Fellowship. Not every ingredient need be local, as long as the majority of the ingredients fit the category. There is a purple folder in the Gathering Space to collect recipes. The cookbook will be published in September in time for our special Harvest Celebration.


Fall Bazaar
The date is set for November 10 and we need lots of volunteers! If you are not able to attend on that date, you can still help in MANY ways to support this event. If you missed our meeting on July 29, it's not too late! Please contact Jenny Oest to see how you can help. or 614-439-7691.


Vegan Challenge

The 2012 Vegan Challenge is kicking off with a dinner on Wed., August 1 and everyone is invited to join! Last year, MVUUF was a co-sponsor of this event, which is a local initiative to encourage a vegan lifestyle. Curious about a vegan diet, how it can impact your body, wondering how it affects the planet and animals - then the Vegan Challenge is for you! The Environmental Action Group and the Program Council support MVUUF's collaboration in this event, which is sponsored by Persephone, a former MVUUF DRE. For more information, visit  or email  


Social Action Movie
Everyone is welcome to attend our screening of "Paris Burning" on Fri., August 10 at 7 p.m. in the Founders room. This film deals with LGBT issues and is presented by the Social Justice Action Committee.


Wesley Center Food Bank
The Wesley Center food pantry is running extremely low. If you are able to donate any of the following items, please bring them to the Fellowship and leave them in the box in the Gathering Space. Thank you!   The W.C. needs: canned green beans, cereal, canned whole kernel corn, canned mixed vegetables, dry pasta (most needed!), mac and cheese, canned tuna, canned chicken, and canned fruit.


We are a liberal religious community that embraces diversity and respects the inherent worth and dignity of every person.  ALL are welcome here, no matter their race, sex, sexual/affectional orientation, gender expression, or ability.

Please visit us on Sunday mornings at 11 a.m. for our worship service - we'd love to see you!