UUCH Chalice
The Overlook
Unitarian Universalist Church of Huntsville
3921 Broadmor Rd., Huntsville AL 35810  
April 2nd, 2015
Vol. 15 Issue 14
In This Issue

"First Sunday Potluck" Postponed

veggie Renoir

This Sunday, April 5th, would normally be Potluck Sunday, but since we're bringing snacks and goodies to the Egg Hunt at Alice & Betsy's, we are postponing the potluck until the Sunday of April 12th, when Brett Jones is coming for his Talk and Book-signing event.

Wanted: New or Gently Worn Shoes


As you are cleaning out closets for the upcoming UU Yard sale, you may find shoes that your kids have outgrown, or that are kind of worn out, or the pair that seemed like a good idea at the time, but that you don't ever actually wear. Bag them up and bring them to church! The Huntsville Assistance Program (HAP) can use them.  


Donated shoes will be sent to developing nations for sale by micro-businesses. These businesses provide income for families in need. In addition, HAP is paid for shoes it collects. It's a win-win "sit-shoe-ation"!


We will collect shoes until May 1st. You can place them in the food collection areas in the foyer or fellowship hall. Questions? Please call Tonia at (256) 882-9891.

Let's Load Up!

The church is sponsoring its annual yard sale on Saturday, April 25th, and it's time to start hauling your stuff in!

You may now begin bringing your items to the church during the Admin.'s office hours, i.e.10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. (Better call first, just in case: 256.534.0508.) Storage is in the north wing of the building, so park in the north parking lot for your convenience, and ring the doorbell so Deedee can open the door for you.


Keep emptying your drawers, garages, attics, and closets! Please make sure that clothes smell fresh  and that donated items are not torn or broken.  Contact Bonnie Herold bherold51@gmail.com with questions.

This Sunday:
edlewiess flower
Please bring a Flower to Share!
Adult RE Presents: Awareness Through Movement 
Everyone is welcome!
Come learn how to use the core of your body to improve movement, balance, and chronic pain. Class is drop-in, no experience necessary, and is led by Sally Locklear.
 Wear comfortable, loose clothing, and bring a bath or beach towel to use as head support for comfort in side-lying.

These classes are being held in the Fellowship Hall on Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m., continuing until further notice.

For information, contact Denise Runnels If you need childcare for this event, please contact Denise at least a week before the event.

Food Basket Works Because of You

We CAN Reach 100!

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, April 5th, 2015

"The Flower Communion: A Celebration of Life, Love, and Beauty"

The Reverend Alice Syltie     


Bring a Flower!

Our annual Flower Communion Service is a celebration of the renewal of life and hope at the center of this season of Easter, Passover, and Spring. It is also a time to build lasting memories for our children. Our sanctuary comes alive with the splendor of flowers, representing the variety and beauty reflected in our coming together as people of all ages, with unique perspectives, hopes and dreams. Each person, from the youngest child to the oldest adult, is asked to bring a flower to share, as we participate in the annual giving and receiving of a flower.

Our celebration will also include a Child Dedication Ceremony (see below), a welcome to new members, and special music by the Choir. 

Child Dedication Ceremony
Sophia Fahs wrote, "Each night a child is born is a holy night." Unitarian Universalists celebrate each life as sacred, and we recognize the place of the faith community in supporting parents and nurturing each new child as they grow. A Child Dedication Ceremony welcomes and blesses new life, acknowledging the congregation's role in passing on the heritage of values and faith that sustain a person in their continued growth and development. We see the miracle and wonder of life in each new face.

If you have questions about this ceremony, or would like to have your baby or child dedicated, please contact Rev. Alice (revaluu@aol.com) right away.  

  This Sunday in RE

tiny-purple-flowers.jpg Bring a Flower!  

Children and Youth will remain in the Sanctuary to share in our Annual Flower Communion Service.

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

For more information, contact Erin Reid, our Director of Religious Education (DRE) (256.694.6786 or eereid@hotmail.com).   
From Your Minister


What Does It Mean To Be a People of Revelation?


Our theme for the month of April is Revelation. As we know, one of the theological tenets of our free faith is "Revelation is Not Sealed." Truth continues to be revealed to us from a variety of sources, throughout our life time. In answering the question, what does it mean to be a "people of revelation," a common response in our liberal tradition would be that first and foremost it means to be a people of humility. Revelation is on-going and spread out all over the place. Nobody has cornered the market. Nobody has captured it whole cloth. All each of us, and each of our religions, can do is know a piece of the truth. And so we are called to be humble. Humble and open. Open to other perspectives. Open to new insights. Open to a diversity of perspectives and insights.


But an openness to otherness and diversity is very different than an openness to being led, being guided, being called. It is one thing to affirm the wisdom of other perspectives; it is quite another to affirm the existence and importance of otherness!


This is how Parker Palmer, the Quaker teacher beloved by many UUs, puts it:


Before you tell your life what you intend to do with it, listen for what it intends to do with you. Before you tell your life what truths and values you have decided to live up to, let your life tell you what truths you embody, what values you represent.


Members of my sharing circle point out that this requires a whole different sense of being humble and open to otherness! What if, for this month, we forget celebrating diverse perspectives and multiple sources of wisdom, and instead consider that Life is speaking to us? Take a moment to let that sink in. It's a radical idea. Imagine that we are not the only ones doing the talking!


Imagine that Life itself actually "wants" something for us and from us. Imagine that it's not all about us choosing and being in control, but instead about us listening, and looking, and letting ourselves be led. This too is what it means to be a people of revelation.


Indeed if our UU theologians are right, we are dependent on this being true. Here's how the preeminent UU theologian James Luther Adams put it:


We cannot properly place our confidence in our own creations; we must depend upon a transforming reality that breaks through our encrusted forms of life and thought to create new forms. We put our faith in a creative reality that is re-creative. Revelation is continuous.


So humility indeed. Humility to admit we get stuck in "encrusted forms." Humility to admit that we can't see or break out of those stuck ways of being all on our own. Humility to trust that there is an otherness--a confounding, mysterious, maybe conscious, maybe not-conscious otherness--operating out there and in us that we need.


And so, do you trust it? Do you trust that Life itself is trying to tell you something important? Lead you somewhere important? Get you to see or do something important?


These are the questions that our members will be talking about in their Chalice Circles this month. If you are interested in joining a chalice circle, let me know. Next fall we will open up new chalice circles and hope to find a spot for everyone who would like to look more deeply into the profound questions of living our Unitarian Universalist faith.


In Love and Hope,

Rev. Alice

Easter Egg Hunt at Alice & Betsy's!
This Sunday Afternoon, April 5th!


You and your family are invited to spend Easter Sunday afternoon with your fellow UUs in a day of relaxation and fun while welcoming the beginning of spring. (Rain or shine!)


What: Easter Egg Hunt

Who: Everyone is invited!

When: Sunday, April 5th, 2-5:00 p.m.

Where: Alice Dilbeck and Betsy Applegate's home, in the Monrovia area.


Suggestions for what to bring:

Yourself and family--Eggs for the hunt (plastic filled and "real")--Baskets for gathering eggs--Goodies to share for munching--Lawn chairs and musical instruments.


We'll have badminton, croquet, activities for all ages, and "sitting-on-the-porch-talking-as-we-watch-others-expend-a-lot-of-energy." What could be more fun?!


Children are advised to wear or bring play clothes to fully enjoy the outdoor activities.


Directions to Alice Dilbeck's and Betsy Applegate's home are in the fellowship hall by the coffee, or you can call (256-534-0508) or email Deedee at the church office (uuch@uuch.org) for a copy.


We're Egg-cited! We'll be HOPPY to see you!  

We Are Here, and Reaching Out!
2015 UUCH Annual Budget Drive
Please Return Your Pledge Forms Soon!


The 2015 UUCH Annual Budget Drive (ABD) began Sunday, March 8th. The ABD slogan "We Are Here, and Reaching Out" recognizes our shared accomplishment of moving our church to Broadmor Road and making it home. It also reflects our mission statement to "let people know 'We are here' and that we welcome diversity."


Cottage Meetings were held in Mid-March and we have been gratefully accepting pledge forms from those members and friends who could not attend. Thus far, we have received pledge commitments for just over $158,000 from a total of 62 donor families. For comparison, last year's ABD total was $194,470 from 89 donors. With the help of our new and existing donors, we can match last year's record setting budget drive.

We need the full participation of all members and friends to match last year's total and fund the church at our current level. We need your pledge! The ABD pledges account for more than 90% of our operating budget. Pledge commitment forms were mailed on the 20th to those who were not able to attend a Cottage Meeting. We ask that all completed pledge commitment forms be returned to the church office as soon as possible so that work can begin on our 2015-2016 budget. 


Thanks to those who have already made pledge commitments and to those who will soon make pledges for the church year that will begin on July 1st. To "Reach Out" and achieve our goals, every pledge matters!


BIG pledges. SMALL pledges. MEDIUM pledges. All pledges are important and appreciated as we "Reach Out" to each other, to our new neighborhood, to Huntsville, and to the wider world.

--Jon Fox and Jason Aycock, 2015 ABD C0-chairs
Monday, April 6th:
Exploring SoulCollage® with Adult RE


The 7th UU principle calls us to respect the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part. When we reflect upon this principle we understand this web to be complex and multi-dimensional. The process of SoulCollage® as presented by Seena B. Frost reveals a scaled down yet similar complexity within ourselves. As we build our deck of cards and come face-to-face in a visual way with the various aspects of ourselves and of our own complexity, we may have a better understanding of how the innumerable and various aspects of all existence is similarly interconnected.



What is it?

...an intuitive process and creative imagery that moves you toward wholeness.

What does it do?

...accesses, recognizes, and honors the many parts of your unique self.


Have fun and be inspired! Create a deck of personalized 5x8 cards to discover and remind yourself how complex, talented, versatile, and unique you are. Use your cards to help you access all parts of yourself. Connect with the larger spiritual dimensions that inspire you.


SoulCollage®--come to know your whole self.

Denise Runnels and Nancy Finley will co-facilitate the workshop in the UUCH fellowship hall Monday evening, April 6th, from 6:00-8:30p.m.

Baby Shower!

Please join us in celebration with Claudia and Mike Carson, who are expecting a baby boy in May. A baby shower for the couple will be held in the Fellowship Hall at UUCH on Saturday, April 11 from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.

Please RSVP to Kathy Heath at
kheath@comcast.net or (256) 457-1753 if you plan to attend.

Coming April 12th:  

An Afternoon with Brett Jones 

On Sunday afternoon April 12th, starting at 2:00 p.m., local author and UUCH friend Brett Jones will be at our church to give a talk and read from his memoir Pride: The Story of the First Openly Gay Navy SEAL. Copies of the book will be available for purchase, and Jones will sign books during the potluck and after his presentation. Brett has generously offered to donate all the proceeds from the book sales that day to UUCH!

This event is free and open to the public. We've advertised to the public that it will begin at 2:00 p.m. However, we will have a potluck after church that day and Brett will be there to mingle and sign for us during that time too! Join and share the Facebook Event to help spread the word! https://www.facebook.com/events/794483803976906/
This Sunday: Don't Forget the Flowers!


well-manicured-flowers.jpg From the humble daffodil to the tiniest of violets, spring has sprung! For this Sunday's Flower Communion, please bring in a flower from your yard.

No flowers? How about a branch from a spring green tree or shrub?

No green? Don't worry, we'll have extra flowers to share. Spring is everywhere!
Care List  


At our Circle of Candles on Sunday, March 29th, candles were lit for:


Mari Hinckley: "Very happy to share that after 19 years of longing for a hedgehog companion, Kristabelle and I have welcomed Rose, the hedgehog, into our family and she is adjusting nicely. She is proof that with patience, dreams really can come true."

If you have pastoral care needs, please contact the Reverend Alice Syltie at revaluu@aol.comCare Chair Barbara Hitt will be out of town for a few weeks. Please contact Care Committee members Jefflyn Weed (256-882-9604), Tim Miller (256-880-6792), or Nancy Stetson (256-650-6116), should a need arise. 
UUCH 14-15 Board Members


President:  Denise Hunter-Gilbert

Vice-President: Angel Hundley 

Secretary: Bobby Hall           

Treasurer: Jerome Belcher   

Trustees: Millicent Simmons, John Fox, & 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 Denise Hunter-Gilbert, no later than one week prior to the meeting, i.e. the Tuesday before. You may leave a copy of your request in her Mailbox at the church office, or contact her at UUCHBoardPresident@uuch.org.

The next UUCH Board Meeting will be held
Tuesday, April 28th, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. Thanks for your cooperation!

From the Overlook is a publication of

The Unitarian Universalist Church,

3921 Broadmor Rd. Huntsville, AL 35810

Minister: The Reverend Alice Syltie

Board President: Denise Hunter-Gilbert 

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: 10:00a.m. to 4:00p.m. Mon-Tue-Thu-Fri.

For Wednesday access, please call in advance. 

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

Minister's email: revaluu@aol.com.

Web: www.uuch.org 


Sunday Services are held 10:45 a.m. to 12:00 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.