UUCH Chalice
The Overlook
Unitarian Universalist Church of Huntsville  
November 14th, 2013
Vol. 13 Issue 46
In This Issue
Fair Trade Chocolate!
Food Basket
Upcoming Services
Sunday in RE
Service Auction
Interweave P&G Night
Miles for Midwives
Pageant Preview
ARE Video Discussion
Christian Sources
OWL Parent Meeting
Watch Sermons Online!
Broadmor Briefing
Board Report
Care List
Fair Trade Chocolate is back!
Equal Exchange Logo
This Sunday, Equal Exchange fair trade chocolate will again be for sale in the back of the sanctuary.

In addition to the yummy chocolate bars, we will be selling hot cocoa, baking cocoa, and chocolate chips for the upcoming holiday baking season and cool weather.  Proceeds are used for social justice projects, and our congregation's purchase of Equal Exchange products supports UUSC.


we also have
Fair Trade, Organic, "Kaffeeklatsch" coffee for sale!  
With Fair Trade products, everyone wins!
We CAN Reach 100!
canned goods
The Social Justice Committee's goal is to collect and donate 100 items per month. Can you pick up an extra canned good, nonperishable food item, or personal care product next time you are out shopping?  Please do, and put it in the basket in the church foyer to be donated to the Huntsville Assistance Program (HAP).
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Upcoming Services

UUCH Chalice
Sunday November 17th, 2013

"The Web of Love"  
Brad Korb   


Every day we are exposed to a myriad of ways in which we are supposedly different, separate, and alien from each other. But our Unitarian Universalist faith teaches us that we are all connected in a web of life.  As we kick off the Guest At Your Table program for the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, we are challenged to seek what unites humanity, not what separates us. In his message, Brad will explore how our interconnectedness drives us to act out of love towards our fellow humans, here and around the world.

This Sunday in Religious Education


This Sunday during RE classes we will be casting for the Christmas Pageant! There are parts for everyone! We will also be making Pageant props and decorations. For more about the Pageant and rehearsal times, please read the article below.


Nursery care (ages 0-3) will be provided as usual.

For more information, contact Erin Reid, our Director of Religious Education (256.694.6786 or eeried@hotmail.com).  

This Saturday:
UUCH Annual Service Auction!
You Are About to Enter the
Community Construction Zone!

You are invited to attend the UUCH Service Auction 2013. This popular event will take place this Saturday, November 16th, at the church. When the doors open at 6:00pm, you will find a delicious spread of tasty treats awaiting you on the buffet table. In between bites, you can look over the amazing assortment of dinner parties, services, events, arts & crafts, and miscellaneous items in the Auction Catalog. You will find many of those items for sale on the Silent Auction tables. A few of the items will be sold during the Live Auction that follows.


When you arrive at the church on Saturday evening, you will enter the Community Construction Zone. Many of the services and events that are sold at the auction provide a great way for you to meet and have fun with other members. With your participation, you get great opportunities to deepen your bonds of community.


Don't miss the food, the fellowship, and the fun, this Saturday, November 16th! A small donation is requested. Door prizes will be awarded during the evening. You must be present to win. No need to get a sitter--childcare will be provided.

See you there!

chalice w/rainbow flame  

Interweave Potluck & Game Night

This Friday!   


UUCH's Interweave is an Outreach Group for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) peoples and their friends and allies. On the 3rd Friday of each month, we hold a "Potluck and Game Night" to eat, play, and have a good time in a "safe zone" for the LGBTQ. We hope that our allies will come out and join in the fun so that we have a good mix of LGBTQ and A's participating. Everyone is Welcome.

This Month's Potluck/Game night will be held this Friday, November 15th, from 6:30-9pm, here at the church. 

Contact Denise Runnels for more information.

Miles for Midwives Walk is This Saturday


Your Social Justice Committee is promoting the Miles for Midwives Walk on November 16th, 2013. The walk will benefit the Alabama Birth Coalition, which is an organization founded to promote the legalization of midwifery and out-of-hospital births in the state of Alabama. Many rural counties in the state do not have access to obstetrical care.


About Registration: Go to alabamabirthcoalition.org and click "Get Tickets" for the Huntsville walk.  Admission includes live music, lunch for the whole family (provided by local restaurants), kids' activities, door prizes & vendors!  Look for our UUCH Social Justice Info booth! Call Anna Bertone at 919-428-6918 with any questions.

  Christmas Pageant Preview!


Christmas BellsThe Annual Christmas Pageant will be performed during the Worship Service on Sunday, pageantDecember 15th, 2013. Children who participate in the pageant should:

  • be at least 4 years old (we have parts for adults too!)
  • be able to attend a short rehearsal during RE on Sunday, December 8th
  • be able to arrive at church early (10:00 a.m.) on the day of the pageant (Dec. 15th) for a quick run-through
  • be able to supply simple costume items (e.g., bath robes, etc.--no sewing or elaborate costuming required)

If you'd like to be part of this exciting production, please come to RE on Sunday, Nov. 17th , when we will be choosing parts.  Parents should plan to come downstairs and confirm children's participation following the service. You may also contact Erin Reid at (256) 694-6786 or eereid@hotmail.com. THERE ARE PARTS FOR EVERYONE!

Adult RE  Video Discussion:
Emotional Intelligence


The Adult Religious Education committee is sponsoring a Video Discussion based on a lecture series by Robert Solomona philosophy professor at University of Texas, Austin. We will watch another video lecture from "The Passions: Philosophy and the Intelligence of Emotions" series. Based on last week's discourse, the discussion afterwards should prove thought-provoking and insightful. You need not have been to the previous discussions to participate. 


Join us at 6pm on Wednesday, November 20th for about an hour and a half. Gary & Barbara Hitt will co-facilitate. Leaving early to attend choir practice is perfectly acceptable! Contact Nancy Finley at least one week in advance if you need child care. 

Adult RE "Sources" Series:
Christian Teachings


The Adult RE "Sources Series" to examine our Six UU Sources continues in December with our source that draws from Christian teachings. Our previous sources workshops have been very interesting with lively discussion, and you are encouraged to join us even if you have missed these earlier workshops. We will base this discussion on Zealot, by Reza Aslan, a book exploring the historical Jesus through both biblical and extra-biblical sources. Aslan presents the historical Jesus as a political radical executed for sedition, whose apocalyptic vision centered on social justice and equality. The book has received both high praise and high criticism, depending upon the reviewer--let's see what it has to say to Unitarian Universalists!


You can find both print and eBook versions of the book at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble, or if you are unable to get a copy for yourself we will have a few on the coffee bar at the back of the sanctuary that can be checked out. Of course, we should have ample talking points even if you can't get the book read before the discussion.  Dr. Laurel Bollinger and Denise Runnels will facilitate this discussion.  Dr. Bollinger has taught courses at the graduate level in the Bible as Literature, and looks forward to this conversation! We will meet Sundays December 8th and 15th at 6pm. Please contact Nancy Finley at least one week before the discussion if you need childcare.

Save the Date: Parent Meeting for OWL Participants (Ages 11-12) on Dec. 8th


The Children and Youth Religious Education Program will host Our Whole Lives (OWL) sexuality education programs for youth ages 11-12 in January 2014.  The facilitators will offer a parent meeting December 8th, 12:30-2:30 PM, at the church to give parents/guardians vital information related to the program.  Parents/guardians who are interested in enrolling their youth in OWL must attend this meeting.  Childcare will be provided downstairs.  This meeting is for parents and guardians only.

OWL offers a beautiful curriculum in keeping with UU values for building holistic identity and sexuality awareness in young people.  OWL fosters authenticity, safety, age-appropriate understanding, self-worth, and, in general, provides the tools a young person needs to make healthy choices. The class will be led by a committed team of trained facilitators.

OWL class size and the number of families we can accommodate at the orientation are limited.  Please RSVP to DRE Erin Reid at eereid@hotmail.com by December 6th.

Read more about OWL at http://www.uua.org/re/owl/

yellow-mouse-sm.jpg Sermon Videos Available Online!


You may have noticed that the recent updates to the web site included a page titled "sermons"--a page that, until now, has been blank.  This week, two recent sermon videos were uploaded to YouTube and made available on the sermons page.


If you haven't seen this page on the new web site, navigate to www.uuch.org, then select News>Sermons in the bar near the top of the page.


If for some reason your browser isn't loading the new web site, it most likely has a copy of the old site in your browser cache.  (The new website homepage has a line of "rainbow people" at the top!) You can get rid of it, typically, by selecting "reload" once uuch.org is loaded (most browsers offer  "reload" as a button with the picture of an arrow curling around to itself).   Failing that, go into your browser settings and clear your entire cache.  Enjoy!


Todd Hunter-Gilbert, Tech Chair 

ModChalice Broadmor Briefing


The Renovation Committee is excited to announce that we have signed a contract with an engineering firm, Total Design Engineering (TDE), to design the new sanctuary HVAC system. As you may remember, the current sanctuary HVAC system does not function and replacing that system is the highest priority and biggest task that will be done under the phase 1 renovation activity. Once the HVAC design is completed by TDE in a few weeks, we will request bids from several contractors and then hire a contractor to implement the new HVAC system in the sanctuary.


The Renovation Committee has also been working to clean up the exterior of the facility. We have mulched about half of the branches that were cut during the property work day and have also had the non-functioning two AC units outside the RE Wing removed.


We also met with the architect last week to review the preliminary plans for the sanctuary bathroom remodel. These bathrooms will be completely remodeled to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines. The committee reviewed the preliminary plan, made some changes, and now the architect will proceed with the final design.


--Brad Korb, Renovation Committee Chair

Board Report October 22nd, 2013


All Board members were present and were once again joined by our Ministerial Intern, Denise Gyauch. The Treasurer's Report indicated that  "Everything's okay." The Minister's Report included handouts on a program that Rev Syltie (and the Board) is excited about implementing that will refocus the energy of the church toward a more in-depth level of spirituality and commitment.


The Board voted to apply for a UUA matching grant to fund a part-time Ministerial Intern for the 2014-2015 fiscal year, presumably a continuation of Ms. Gyauch's time with us. We also initiated creating an Internship Committee to work with Ms. Gyauch (one of the elements of obligation for us to serve as a teaching congregation, as well as a requirement to qualify for the matching grant next year).


The City of Huntsville is about to embark on a construction project to increase the height of the water tower beside our driveway. After consultation with members of the Board, we have established that they will use an area behind the dumpster as a storage area (basically the old US-431 pavement), and leave a barrier of trees and bushes between the parking lot and their equipment. The project should take about four months, and that area will be returned to a "natural" condition and the parking lot repaired, if needed. They will be paying a lump sum, in lieu of monthly rent, for our cooperation. The Board voted to approve the plans, pending a contract with the specifics.


An Aesthetics Team has been created to work with the Broadmor Property Renovation Committee.  Members of this team are Nancy Stetson, Melissa Shepherd, Diedre Moore, and Kristy From-Brown. That team will eventually migrate to work under the Transitions Team, which is currently being formed.  The Transitions Team will facilitate the transition to the new building and our moving plans The Board discussed the makeup of the Transitions Team and hopes to have it up and running shortly. 


Due to the Thanksgiving Holiday, the next Board meeting has been scheduled for Thursday, November 21st, 2014.

Care List  


At our November 10th Circle of Candles, candles included were:



A Candle of Joy for Jane Welty. "My husband Ward celebrated his 70th birthday last Tuesday. "


A Candle of Joy for Lydia Goodman. "Big joy--Larry celebrated his 80th birthday on October 29. We're still celebrating!"


A Candle of Joy for Ilene Sparks. "My granddaughter, Julie Sparks, a third-year law student at the University of Alabama, has been selected/hired to a clerkship at a Birmingham, Alabama, prestigious law firm from 500 applicants.


A Candle of Joy for Kathy Fisher. "This week, the 13th is Daddy's birthday and the 14th is my first grandson's."


A Candle of Sorrow for those in the Philippines suffering from the devastation caused by a massive typhoon. 


If you have pastoral care needs, please contact the Reverend Alice Syltie at revaluu@aol.com. Barbara Hitt is Chair of the Care Committee, and may be reached at home, (256) 881.2531; on her cell, (256) 348.5845; or by email at bghitt1@comcast.net.

UUCH 13-14 Board Members
President: Kevin Betts     

V.P.  Denise Hunter-Gilbert 

Secretary: Bobby Hall           

Treasurer: Jerome Belcher   

Trustees: Nancy Finley, Kathy Heath, & Laurel Bollinger  

Do you have an Agenda Item for the Board?  
The Board respectfully requests that all agenda items for the meeting be submitted to Board President Kevin Betts, no later than one week prior to the meeting, i.e. the Tuesday before.You may leave a copy of your request in his Mailbox at the church office, or contact him at

Next UUCH Board Meeting will be on Thursday, November 21st, 2013 at 7pm. Thanks for your cooperation!

From the Overlook is a publication of

The Unitarian Universalist Church,

2222 Governor's Dr. Huntsville, AL 35801

Minister: The Reverend Alice Syltie

Board Pres: Kevin Betts 

Editorial Board: Laurel Bollinger, Kathy Heath 


Newsletter deadlines are each Monday at midnight!
Please send submissions to news collator Deedee Moore at


Admin. Office Hours:  

Monday 10am- 1pm; Thursday 9:30am-12pm ; Friday



Office phone: 256.534-0508, email: uuch@uuch.org 

Minister's Phone: 256.539-9607, email: revaluu@aol.com

Web: www.uuch.org 


Sunday Services are held 10:45am to 12 noon;  

Children's Religious Education held concurrently.   

Nursery available for age 3 years and under.

For further info on any event, call the church office:
256. 534-0508.