February 18, 2016  |  Vol. 3 No. 7
Pledge Packet Pick-Up: This Sunday and Next!
Pick up your Pledge Packet on Sunday, Feb. 21 or 28 - "peas" and thank you!
An important package awaits your pick-up as you leave the Sanctuary after services this Sunday, Feb. 21, as Pledge Drive 2016-2017 begins! Or, possibly, if you prefer, pick it up on Sunday, Feb. 28. 

Pledge Team members (and other pertinent people) are prepared to pleasantly present your personally-addressed packet to you on these Sundays (if you are present). Please make it a priority to procure your packet - it'll save us plenty in postage (hundreds of $)! Pledge packets not picked up will be mailed on Feb. 29, plenty of time to prepare your pledge and return it on or before Pledge Day, March 9 - when prizes will be possible for pledges received on (or prior to) that fun-for-all day!

Now, we know that's a paragraph (and mouthful) of "P's"- but here's all you need to know:

Please Pick Up Your Pledge Packet!

Pssst - An added "plus:" On Sundays, Feb. 21 & 28, Ron Parker and Larry Gottschalk will be present at a table in the Social Hall, prepared to help anyone wanting to set up a My First U profile - which allows you to personally pledge online. Pretty perfect!

With pleasure,
Your Pledge Team Members

Marcia Wattson, Zack Steven, Jeanne Guignon Peppel, & Justin Schroeder

February worship theme: Brokenness
Worship this Sunday
Sunday, Feb. 21, 9:30 & 11:15 a.m.
Pledge Drive Kick-Off
"Sacred Promises"
Rev. Justin Schroeder
Human beings have been said to be "the promise making, promise breaking, and promise renewing creatures." What sacred promises do we make, break, and renew with one another, with our faith community, and with life itself? How do these sacred promises help hold us together, in the midst of life's tumult and uncertainty? What sacred promises are we just waiting to live into?
Read More  
Winter Worship Schedule

A Look Ahead
Sunday, Feb. 28, 9:30 & 11:15 a.m.
Rev. Meg Riley

Miss a Recent Sunday?
Feb. 14, 2016
"Conscience, Lead Me to Grace"
Rev. Ruth MacKenzie

Feb. 7, 2016
"It's Already Broken"
Rev. Jen Crow

Jan. 31, 2016
"Letting Go"
Rev. Elaine Aron Tenbrink

Jan. 24, 2016
"Step by Step"
Rev. Justin Schroeder
Marital First Responders Training
Saturday, Feb. 20, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
If friends confide in you about relationship challenges and you want to feel more confident in how to be supportive, this training is for you! Marital First Responders are people who others open up to about relationship problems. But they are sometimes unsure how to be helpful, how to avoid taking sides, and how to steer friends and family to the right resources. This training will help you be more intentional, confident, and effective when others come to you for support. Led by Bill Doherty, Ph.D., University of Minnesota Professor, marriage therapist, and co-founder of The Doherty Relationship Institute. Registration: To sign up, email Rev. Jen Crow at jen@firstuniv.org.
Mosaic Exhibit Artists' Reception
Sunday, Feb. 21, 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m. 
The work of three talented mosaic artists - all of whom have distinctively different styles - is on display in our social hall exhibit space February 21 - April 3. Artists Tom Miller, Cheryl Anderson, and Debbie Cash will be present after both services on Sunday, Feb. 21 at an artists' reception. Some additional items will be for sale on that day only.
Read more about the exhibit and the artists on our website and stop by this Sunday to meet the artists! 
Beacon Citizens in the Social Hall
Sunday, Feb. 21, 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
People fill many roles in the work to end homelessness. Some give to organizations working to end homelessness; others volunteer to provide shelter or do a home build; and still others support affordable housing in their community. Now, we are asking legislators to do their part and support the Homes for All agenda during the 2016 Legislative Session. This Sunday, we invite you to meet with Beacon Citizen leadership in the social hall after services. By filling out the Beacon Advocacy card that you'll find in your Order of Service and sharing how you fill roles in the work to end homelessness, you are demonstrating to elected officials that you want them to do their part.
"Selma" Viewing & Discussion
Saturday, Feb. 27, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Through our Racial Justice Video and Book Discussion series, we invite you to join us for engaging conversations on race, racism, and whiteness. "Selma" chronicles Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s 1965 campaign to secure equal voting rights in the face of violent opposition. Join us for a viewing of the movie followed by a discussion led by Jeff Sylvestre and Channing McKinley. This is a drop-in program. Please bring your own lunch.
Climate Endangered Birds of MN
Sunday, Feb. 28, 1-3 p.m., Cummins Room
Nearly half of all bird species in North America are seriously threatened by climate change, and in Minnesota we have 166 climate threatened or climate endangered species. St. Paul Audubon member Monica Bryand worked on a special project of Minnesota Audubon to capture, through photos, these 166 at-risk species. It is a work in progress but she currently has over 100 images. On Sunday, Feb. 28, she will share her photos and stories of her travels and why she is so passionate about working to protect the environment for people and the birds. Monica is a Latina birder/photographer who focuses on mainly urban birds but manages to travel up north and across the state to find special feathered friends. 
15 NOW MN Advocacy Opportunity
Sunday, Feb. 28, 12:45 - 1:45 p.m.
Learn about the $15 minimum wage campaign in Minneapolis! The movement for a $15 minimum wage is sweeping cities across the country. With 82% support among likely voters for $15 in Minneapolis, 15Now will be leading a ballot campaign this spring to win a $15 wage this November. Join First Universalist Faithful Action Advocacy and 15Now Minnesota on Sunday, Feb. 28 for some empowering conversation and action planning around improving livable wages for Minneapolis workers. The event will be held in the Chalice Room. We hope to see you there!
Plan Ahead to Pledge Online:
Help Available in the Social Hall Feb. 21 and 28
Our annual pledge campaign to raise funds for the church operating budget for 2016-2017 begins on Sunday, Feb. 21 and culminates with a Pledge Day celebration on Wednesday, March 9.

This year for the first time, you'll be able to submit your pledge and set up payments using the same online system - MyFirstU - if you choose the online method. (Of course, you can still fill out a paper pledge card or call as well.) 

If you plan to pledge online this year, we highly recommend that you make sure you have your account set up, remember your password, and are familiar with MyFirstU before Pledge Day.  

This Sunday, Feb. 21 and next Sunday, Feb. 28, Ron Parker and Larry Gottschalk will be in the Social Hall after both services to help you set up your account and get familiar with how MyFirstU works. We encourage you to stop by their table to learn about MyFirstU and online pledging!
Celebrating the Success of Our Holiday Giving Project
We are happy to announce that we achieved our goal of raising $70,000 for our Holiday Giving project this year! 

We will be presenting a check of $64,884.38 (accounting for administrative costs) to Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative this Sunday, Feb. 21, during both services. Additionally, members of First Universalist attended Beacon's Ending Homelessness Together Luncheon this past fall, and made gifts of more than $7,000, though we're not officially counting this as part of our Holiday Giving. Together, our gifts will have a life-changing impact on the people Beacon serves. Thank you for your generosity!
State of the Church Meeting Slides Available Online
Thank you to all who were able to attend our 2016 State of the Church meeting on Sunday, Feb. 7.

At this meeting, the Board of Trustees and staff shared updates on their goals for the year. We celebrated shared accomplishments, and outlined emerging opportunities and next steps in various ministry areas.

If you weren't able to join us, we've made the presentation slides available as a pdf document here: 2016 State of the Church Meeting
Youth Cultural Exchange Informational Meeting
Sunday, Feb 21, 1-2 p.m. in the Cummins Room
7th and 8th grade families are invited to an informational meeting about First Universalist's Youth Cultural Exchange (YCE) program on Sunday, Feb. 21 from 1-2 p.m. At this time, we will describe the YCE program in greater detail, answer questions, and share the schedule and process for youth to apply.
If your 7th or 8th grader is at all interested in being part of YCE, please plan to attend the mandatory informational meeting. All interested youth must attend the informational meeting with a parent/guardian to be eligible to apply. YCE is a unique opportunity for youth to participate in a cultural exchange with youth in Nicaragua. Our UU youth participants gain a deep understanding of how to make a difference in the world by taking the first step of learning to be friends with youth from another culture. This opportunity will not be offered again for First Universalist youth in this age-group cohort.
Have You Filled Out Our Membership Survey?
On Sunday, Feb. 7, you should have received an email with a link to a survey that our Exploring Membership Working Group put together. Many of you have already responded and filled out the survey, and we are so appreciative. If you haven't yet filled it out, there is still time!

Our Exploring Membership Working Group is considering how the church might strengthen our membership process and better invite people into meaningful engagement in this transformative faith community. Our first step in this process is a 10-minute online surveyPlease visit this page to take the survey. We want to hear what you have to say!

Anyone who has attended First Universalist somewhat regularly for a time, regardless of membership status or whether you currently attend, can take the survey. Responses are appreciated by Monday, Feb. 22.

Paper surveys will be available in the social hall on Sunday, Feb. 21. You can also email Elaine@firstuniv.org or call 612-825-1701 x124 and we will mail one to you.

Thank you for taking the time to fill out this survey and further strengthen our vibrant faith community!
Community Solar Garden: Space Still Available
Your First Universalist solar team is still hard at work creating an online presentation so that more church members and friends can learn about this important program.  

In the meantime, visit us on Sundays in the Social Hall. We will be tabling for the next several Sundays and are happy to answer all your questions.  

If you are ready to reserve your spot, with no obligation, complete a Subscriber Interest Form online. We'd also like to encourage those of you already in-process to urge your friends, neighbors, and family members to apply.

If you have questions, contact a member of the solar team at FirstUnivCSG@gmail.com
Cycle of Life and Pastoral Care

Our thoughts are with:

The family and friends of long-time church member, Lynn Elling, who passed away on Sunday, Feb. 14. A memorial service will be held on May 1 at 3 p.m. at church; Rev. Justin Schroeder will officiate.

Betsy Horton, as she journeys through hospice at Little Hospice, 7019 Lynmar Ln
Minneapolis, MN 55435. Your cards and good wishes are welcome.

Rui Rui Blieifus and her family. Rui Rui had surgery on her left arm on Wednesday, and is recovering at home.

Sara, Doug, Ike and Bennet Smalley as they journey with Sara's mother, Nancy, through hospice care.

Let Us Keep You in Our Thoughts and Prayers
If you are experiencing a crisis or transition, or celebrating a joy, please let us know. To be included in our Cycle of Life each Sunday in worship, contact Sandy DiNanni at sandy@firstuniv.org or 612-825-1701. If you would like support, contact Rev. Jen Crow at jen@firstuniv.org or 612-825-1701 or any member of our Pastoral Care Team.
Congregational Care:
Transportation Assistance

Need transportation to church or to a doctor's appointment? We can help with at least two weeks' notice. Contact Anne McBean  (952-938-2897, mcbea001@yahoo.com) if you need help with a ride or would like to offer a ride to a congregant.
Planned Giving
If First Universalist means much to you and you want to help the church stay strong, please consider naming it in your will or estate plan. Interested? See a minister or the church's financial administrator.
- Peg Meier of the Planned Giving Committee
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Monday-Thursday 8:30 a.m.-8 p.m.
Closed Fridays and Saturdays
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Contact Us
First Universalist Church of Minneapolis
3400 Dupont Ave. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55408
For staff contact information, please visit our Ministers and Staff page.
First Universalist Church of Minneapolis
3400 Dupont Avenue S.
Minneapolis, MN 55408


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