March 10, 2016  |  Vol. 3 No. 10
Thank You for a Fun and Successful Pledge Day!
Yesterday, hundreds of members and friends joined us for our second annual Pledge Day, a day-long celebration of this community and our commitment to support the work of this church. We have ambitious plans as a congregation for the coming year, including setting a living wage ($15/hour) as our baseline compensation for adult staff, continuing to offer fee-free Religious Education for all, and to expand and deepen our justice work.

Your pledge, along with the pledges of fellow community members, makes this work possible. 
Our goal is to increase our pledge base by $80,000 this year - from $1,155,000 to $1,235,000. If every person considers an increase to their pledge of $10 to $100 a month, we'll hit our goal. Every pledge matters!

If you haven't made your pledge yet, please call us at 612-825-1701, submit your pledge online (instructions here), or mail in the pledge card that was included in your pledge packet. 
Thank you - we are so grateful for your generosity and support of this church community!
Pledge Day early birds enjoyed breakfast hosted by our Planned Giving committee.
The Social Hall was full and lively over the dinner hour and afterwards for bingo!
Pledge Team members Jeanne Guignon Peppel, Marcia Wattson, and Zack Steven celebrated when we surpassed the $500,000 mark around 3 p.m. yesterday.
As 8 p.m. on Pledge Day neared, excitement to see how close we could get to our goal was mounting. We made it almost to $800,000 in pledges by the end of the day! 
March worship theme: Wholeness
Worship this Sunday
Sunday, March 13, 9:30 & 11:15 a.m.
"The Shape of Things"
Rev. Jen Crow
Wholeness - it doesn't mean that things aren't still broken - but rather it suggests a trust in an inescapable unity beneath the cracks, beneath the pain, beneath the systems that have been put in place that distort reality and relationships. Whatever it is, it is already broken, and yet underneath it all, a wholeness beyond this moment and this experience perseveres.
Read More   View Order of Service
Daylight Saving Time
Begins this Sunday
Don't be late to church this Sunday! Remember to "Spring Forward" and set your clocks one hour ahead on Saturday night.

Spring Worship Calendar

A Look Ahead
Sunday, March 20, 9:30 & 11:15 a.m.
Rev. Justin Schroeder

Miss a Recent Sunday?
March 6, 2016
"Whole Life Living" Rev. Justin Schroeder
Feb. 28, 2016
"Sacred Reality"  Rev. Justin Schroeder
Feb. 21, 2016
"Sacred Promises"  Rev. Justin Schroeder
Feb. 14, 2016
"Conscience, Lead Me to Grace"
Rev. Ruth MacKenzie
"American Promise" Part I
Sunday, March 13, 1 p.m., Room 200
Join us on Sunday, March 13 for a viewing and discussion of the first half of the documentary "American Promise," a rare look into the lives of two middle class black families as they navigate the ups and downs of parenting and educating their sons.
The discussion will be led by Brian Eshult, Lark Weller, and Margaret Manderfield. A viewing and discussion of the second half will be offered Sunday, March 20 at 1 p.m. These are drop-in conversations (no registration required) that last 90 minutes. 
Daytime Connections:
"Exploring Life Completion"
Thursday, March 17, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Join other members of our spiritual community to explore your beliefs and feelings about the act of dying. Rev. Harlan Limpert, Chief Operating Officer of UUA, will guide us in examining UU values and principles around end of life care. Dr. Rebecca Thoman, a Compassion & Choices educator, will review end of life documents and strategies. Program includes a small meal (a $5 donation is requested). RSVP to Sandy at or 612-825-1701.
First Universalist Volunteers Needed for
Twin Cities Habitat Build Sites on Saturday, March 12
First Universalist is sponsoring three Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity build sites on Saturday, March 12. We're still looking for a few more volunteers to meet our commitment to Habitat - one of our seven official community partner organizations. Please consider volunteering! To volunteer, please fill out the Habitat Volunteer Signup Form available on our website. Help a deserving family attain the stability a home provides!
Simpson Housing Services Seeks Tutors and Mentors
Simpson Housing Services, one of our community partners, is a local nonprofit which provides housing and support to people experiencing homelessness. Simpson is looking for caring adults committed to making a difference in the lives of children and youth. Simpson seeks to build on the inherent potential of our youth through caring relationships as well as academic support. There are volunteer opportunities available for those interested in being a tutor or mentor. There will be an informational session on Saturday, March 19 about all three youth programs. To register, visit Simpson's Volunteer Calendar and see the calendar link for the event on the 19th. You may also contact Christina Giese at: or 612-455-0859.
Spring Spaghetti Dinner for RE Families is March 19
RE families are invited to join us for a tasty community meal and musical performances by First Universalist youth on Saturday, March 19, the same evening as the 2nd-5th grade RE family overnight. The dinner will take place from 5-6:30 p.m. in the Social Hall and Chalice Room. Children and youth of all ages and their families are welcome to attend!
For middle- and high-school families, after the dinner there will be a special gourmet dessert auction from 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the Cummins Room. Many delectable desserts will be available for bidding!
Dinner tickets are $10 per person or $25 per family. Please follow this link to register for the dinner.

All proceeds from the dinner and dessert go to scholarships for the 9th grade Coming of Age Boston Pilgrimage. Brought to you by the COA families and event co-chairs, the Carnes and Bierbaum families.
Nominating Committee Recruiting Candidates
The Nominating Committee is actively recruiting candidates for leadership positions on the Board of Trustees, the Foundation Board, and the Nominating Committee itself for the next church year. We believe the congregation is full of untapped talent and we encourage people to step forward and share their skills.
Now is an exciting and important time to serve as we continue to build on the positive energy and growth of our congregation. Serving on one of these bodies provides unique opportunities to deepen and enrich your personal connection to the church while broadening your circle of relationships within our spiritual community. Committee members have unique opportunities to collaborate with our passionate ministers and lay leaders to advance the mission of the church.
Board of Trustees: Trustees partner with the congregation and professional staff in shaping the vision and long-term goals of the church. They articulate these aspirations through policy and collaborate with the Senior Minister to see they are fulfilled.
Foundation Board: Board members serve as the stewards of our Foundation endowment. Members screen and select grant requests to non-profit organizations.
Nominating Committee: Committee members screen and recommend candidates to the congregation for vacant positions on the Board of Trustees, Foundation Board, and Nominating Committee.
Requirements: To qualify for any of these positions, you must be a member in good standing of the church. Elections occur at the Annual Meeting in June. Go to our website to view more detailed position descriptions and apply.
Contact any Nominating Committee member to find out more: Pamela Vincent (chair), Deborah Talen, Doug Smalley, Sharon Ramirez, David Lauth, Greg Hoelzer, and Christina Nicholson, Board of Trustees representative. Email
April 23 Great Gathering Tickets Now on Sale
Come experience The Great Gathering on Saturday, April 23 at First Universalist Church of Minneapolis. Join us for dinner, drinks and a chance to sign up for Great Gathering experiences and bid on live auction items. All proceeds from this event will support First Universalist's social justice and youth ministry work and the new pulpit.

Tickets ($40 each) are available in the Social Hall between services beginning this Sunday and can also be purchased online at
AUW (Association of Universalist Women) Spring Retreat Features Rev. Kate Tucker as Keynote Speaker
Simple Gifts
'Tis the gift to be simple
'Tis the gift to be free
'Tis the gift to come down where we ought to be...

AUW's spring retreat features Rev. Kate Tucker as keynote speaker
Held Friday, April 15 through Sunday, April 17 at the Koinonia Retreat Center near Annandale, MN (a short 1 hours from the Twin Cities), AUW's Simple Gifts spring retreat offers opportunities for yoga, Tai Chi Chih, meditation, walking the outdoor Labyrinth, paper-bead making, nature hikes and more. 

Registration includes all programming. Full weekend registration provides two nights lodging and dinner on Friday, breakfast/lunch/dinner on Saturday and breakfast on Sunday. The Saturday only option includes breakfast/lunch/dinner. 

Register at the AUW table before or after service or through Brown Paper Tickets here. Checks will be accepted at the AUW table or can be sent to the church office. Make checks to "AUW" and send to: AUW at First Universalist Church, 3400 Dupont Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55408.

The full weekend cost is $180 for AUW members and $225 for non-members, or you can join AUW and attend for $215. For Saturday only, the fee is $100. No refunds after March 20Partial scholarships through the Kate Tucker Scholarship Fund are available for those with limited finances. See the Brown Paper Tickets website for details.

Register for the Spring Retreat now! Let us all share our Simple Gifts!
Come to Regional Assembly 2016: April 29 - May 1
By David Lauth, Board Member, UUA MidAmerica Region

The annual Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association's MidAmerica Region will be held April 29 - May 1 at the InterContinental Riverfront Hotel in downtown Saint Paul. The theme of this year's Regional Assembly is "The WHO in the New Era of Unitarian Universalism." Who do we want to be as faith communities in the coming years? Who will we need to be, to be relevant? How will we get there? Who will be joining us on this journey?

We will meet in Saint Paul for a weekend of inspiring keynote speeches (from Kenny Wiley, Rev. Elizabeth Nguyen, and Rev. Jeremy Nickel), soul-stirring worship, and a variety of terrific workshops (including workshops led by Rev. Jen Crow and by Lena K. Gardner).  This will be a rare opportunity to meet, close to home, with UUs from nearly 200 congregations in 13 midwestern states. 

You can learn more about Regional Assembly and register (with an "early bird" discount available through March 31) online. If you are a First Universalist member and would like to be a delegate so that you can vote at the annual business meeting, please contact Rev. Justin Schroeder.

Join your fellow UUs for a powerful and memorable weekend! Additional information is available on the UUA MidAmerica Region's website.
Coffee & Chocolate Fundraiser for Youth Boston Pilgrimage
Do you crave something sweet after the worship service? Are you looking for a place to buy fairly traded coffee? Do you want to support First Universalist youth trips? Look no further!

Youth from the 9th Grade Coming of Age class are selling fair-trade coffee and chocolate, Black Lives Matter Standing on the Side of Love T-Shirts, and other goods in the Social Hall after each worship service. All proceeds fund youth scholarships for the Coming of Age Boston Pilgrimage in October. 

Stop by the Social Hall after either service to get your fair-trade coffee and chocolate! Credit cards, cash, checks, and Square Cash are all accepted. The sale will continue every week until the end of the church year.
Cycle of Life and Pastoral Care
Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Betsy Horton. Betsy died peacefully on Monday morning at Little Hospice in Edina. She had the joy of spending her last days with her daughters, Laura and Amy. Information about a memorial service will be forthcoming. 

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 or 612-825-1701. If you would like support, contact Rev. Jen Crow at or 612-825-1701 or any member of our Pastoral Care Team.
Pastoral Care Team 
The Pastoral Care Team is a group of congregants, led by Rev. Jen Crow, who provide confidential pastoral care to friends and members of our congregation. We visit people at homes, hospitals, and hospice or at the corner coffee shop. Our goal is to offer compassionate presence to our fellow congregants in the knowledge that this too is a spiritual practice. If you are in need of a Pastoral Care team visit, please contact Rev. Jen Crow at
Why Do Some Have Silver Name Tags?
Have you ever wondered why some church members have silver name tags? Silver indicates that the wearers are members of the Heritage Circle, meaning they have included First Universalist in their wills or estate plans. If you have already done so or wish to do so, please ask the office for a Letter of Intent. It's very helpful for the church to know your intention. And we'd love to give you a lovely silver name tag!
"Prophetic Partners: A Capacity-Building Workshop for UU Justice Leaders"
Friday, April 29, noon-4 p.m., Unity Church-Unitarian in St. Paul
Join MUUSJA (Minnesota Unitarian Universalist Social Justice Alliance) and the MidAmerica Region of the UUA for this co-sponsored workshop, open to youth and adults from anywhere in the MidAmerica Region. How do the history, values, and theology of our Unitarian Universalist tradition compel us to work for justice? How can we show up as powerful, accountable partners in wider movements for justice? 

Hear from Unitarian Universalist voices experienced in social justice ministry across generations and in multiple contexts; spend time in breakout sessions for youth, religious educators, and congregational social justice leaders; and reflect together on how we can build the skills and the spiritual grounding required to show up as effective, faithful, accountable partners with broader movements for justice. Details, schedule and registration available on MUUSJA's website
Join Our Mailing List
Subscribe to The Weekly Liberal here
Sign up to receive our weekly Children Youth & Family Ministries news here
Church Office Hours
Sundays 8 a.m.-1 p.m.
Monday-Thursday 8:30 a.m.-8 p.m.
Closed Fridays and Saturdays
Weekly Liberal Submissions
We encourage you to submit news!
Do you have an announcement that you'd like published in The Weekly Liberal? Please fill out our online submission form. Edits for length and/or content may occur.
The Weekly Liberal is compiled and edited by Communications Manager Jenn Stromberg. Past issues, publication deadlines, and policies can be found on our website
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


Copyright 2016. All Rights Reserved.