UUCH Chalice
The Overlook
Unitarian Universalist Church of Huntsville
3921 Broadmor Rd., Huntsville AL 35810  
December 10th, 2015
Vol. 15 Issue 50
In This Issue
Hospitality Helpers!
Here's an easy way to become more involved in your service at UUCH. You can be a Hospitality Helper! One way Hospitality Helpers participate is to sign up for a monthly First Sunday Potluck to work with Hospitality Committee members on the Potluck after church service. Call or email Hospitality Chair Betsy Applegate if you'd like to help!

Save the Date! 
singing chili
The UUCH Annual Chili Cook-Off is happening on January 16th, 2016!  More details soon! 

Food Basket!
canned goods
Thanks to your generous donations in November, we donated 128 items to HAP for the month!
Keep up the good work!
Please don't forget to bring non-perishable food and hygiene items for the food basket, to be donated to the Huntsville Assistance Program.
All donations are welcome and appreciated!
Let's Thank Them!
As you start out to do your holiday shopping, please remember to support and thank our Service Auction business sponsors:  
Pizzelle's Confections, Kaffeeklatsch,
and Connie Ulrich Design!

Special Holiday Offer!
The Social Justice Committee and the Kaffeeklatsch are excited to offer two special coffee blends for sale this holiday season:
Winter Solstice--a blend of 3 popular flavored coffees for a rich and unique coffee to warm your holidays.
Chalice--a blend of Kaffeeklatsch's Organic, Fair Trade coffees for a collaborative, well-principled flavor.
Great gifts for yourself and your coffee-loving friends and family!
To order, please see Denise Hunter-Gilbert in the Fellowship Hall after Sunday services (11/29-12/20) or email your order to Denise Hunter-Gilbert, or phone your order to her at 256.665.4042.

Coming in January: Let's Read This Book Together

The UUA's 2015-2016 Common Read is Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption. Author Bryan Stevenson advocates for those wrongfully trapped by the U.S. criminal justice system. UUCH Adult RE will host a book study on this in January, but you can order the book now from the UUA Bookstore!
ARE also has a few copies to lend: See Nancy Finley (finleyn@uah.edu)  for details. For more about the Common Read program, see the website.

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Upcoming Services
UUCH Chalice
Sunday, December 13th, 2015
"Forward Through the Ages: Prophetic Voices of Our Liberal Faith"
The Reverend Alice Syltie   

Our theological inheritance rests in a tradition that honors the words and deeds of prophetic women and men. Our ancestors from the two previous centuries are a rich source of our religious pluralism and inspiration. This Sunday I will continue to share and honor the history that shapes who we are, and who we may be, as a prophetic voice in challenging times.
This is the sermon I expected to deliver on November 29th, when instead I was still in North Carolina due to an unexpected trip to the ER with my granddaughter. Everything turned out fine, but we did not make it home until Sunday evening.  
This Sunday in RE

Christmas Pageant Rehearsal!  Christmas pageant rehearsal will take place during RE time. All pageant participants should plan to attend. There are still parts available! Come join the fun! More information is in the article below.  
Questions about Religious Education at UUCH may be directed to Erin Reid, our Director of Religious Education (DRE) (256.694.6786 or eereid@hotmail.com) or Jessica Zelaya, RE Chair (256.322.2210 or asuriai@yahoo.com). Register online for the UUCH Children and Youth RE Program at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/WS8LDNP. 
From Your Minister

The theme for December is "Expectation" and the question to ask ourselves is, "What does it mean to be a people of Expectation?" This is certainly a big question for Unitarian Universalists. I am reminded of the time, when I was a little girl, that I asked my dad if the sun would always come up every morning. I knew he would have the answer. After all, he was a daddy. His response, as best I can remember after all these years, was, "Well, Alice, we can assume that it will continue to come up every morning, since it always has." A very Unitarian Universalist response, indeed. Based on our experience, and the scientific knowledge to date, it was a good bet.

During my Clinical Pastoral Education, I shared this story with my supervisor who responded, "Wow, Alice, that says a lot about your faith." Before that, it had not occurred to me that the response to my question about whether or not the sun would continue to come up had anything to do with my faith. Expectations, I now believe, have a lot to do with our faith. 
My mother-in-law who was an elementary school principal, lived by the motto, "you get what you expect." She trained her teachers to expect good things from the children. And her school was considered one of the leading schools in Mobile. She had faith in her teachers and in the children. 
Sometimes, though, expectations can lead to disappointment. Anne Lamott tells us "Expectations are resentments under construction." The key, as I see it, is to think about what types of things we expect. At this point in my life, I am learning to expect the unexpected. I need to have faith that I can continue to live, work, and find joy in life, even when what I hoped for, or expected, is not what comes my way.
In this December season of celebrations and expectations, I invite you to think more deeply about how your expectations shape your life. 
Here are some thoughts from Unitarian Universalist minister, and past UUA President John Buehrens:
The seasons may return with regularity, but these holidays do not simply celebrate the cycles of time. Instead, they tell stories about unexpected turns in human history. They express a form of faith that dares to reflect on human expectations being upset...The Jewish and Christian holidays remind us to find the mark of God less in the regularities of nature than in the unexpected turns that life can take. 
In Love and Hope, 
Rev. Alice
Feliz Navidad!
AHA Christmas Dinner is Good to Go! 

Thanks so much to all of you who have donated and signed up to help with the Alabama Hispanic Association Christmas Dinner!

Please remember that if you've signed up bring food, we'll need those items here by 10:00 a.m. this Saturday morning, December 12th. If any of you were planning to donate coats, blankets, or other winter items, please have them at the church by 10:00 a.m., as well.

Thank you for your support! Questions? Call Tonia Betts at (256) 882-9891.
It's Not Too Late to Join the Christmas Pageant!

Our UUCH Annual Christmas Pageant will be performed during the Worship Service on Sunday, December 20th, 2015. Children who participate in the pageant should:REXMAS
  • be at least 4 years old (we have parts for youth and adults too!)
  • be able to attend a short rehearsal during RE on Sunday, December 13th
  • be able to arrive at church early (9:45 a.m.) on the day of the pageant (Dec. 20th) 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 THIS Sunday, December 13th, for our first rehearsal. Parents should plan to come to the RE area 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!
Wonderful Wednesday Suppers
'Tis the season to be jolly! Enjoy warm UUCH fellowship at the Wonderful Wednesday Supper on Wednesday, December 16th, serving 5:30-7:00 p.m. The menu includes homemade spaghetti sauce (turkey & vegetarian), spaghetti noodles (wheat & gluten free), garlic bread, tossed salad, and dessert.

Family-friendly pricing: ages 6 and younger are free, ages 7-12 are $2, age 13 and older are $5. Family max: $15.

Childcare and creative children's activities will be offered at 6:30 for families staying to attend Adult RE or choir activities.
Adult Re will host a film discussion following the dinner.

Do yourself and your family a favor! It couldn't be easier, so don't try to resist--just come join the holiday fun!
Hosted by your UUCH Hospitality Committee.
Adult RE Film Discussion
Wednesday December 16th
Can Science Answer Moral Questions?
Don't miss the next Wednesday Night Film Discussion--it's going to be an interesting one.
Questions of good and evil, right and wrong are commonly thought unanswerable by science.

This TED Talk video argues that science can--and should--be the authority on moral issues, shaping human values and setting out what constitutes a good life. 
Can morality be objectively understood? If science is not the proper method for determining these questions, then how should we decide what is right and wrong?
We will gather from 7:00-8:00 pm for a showing of a short video (23 minutes). Following the video we will have a discussion of these ideas and how they might relate to the principles of UU. Everyone is welcome, and bring a friend. There is always room for diverse ideas at UUCH Adult RE events. Childcare will be provided, so bring the family. The kids can play games or do homework while you enjoy the video. And don't forget the spaghetti supper before!
Food, film, fellowship--you will find it all on Wednesday, December 16th at UUCH! Contact Nancy Finley, finleyn@uah.edu for further information.
votives Care List 
At our Circle of Candles on Sunday, December 6th, candles were lit for:

Brad Korb
, a candle of joy: "Thank you to Tim Miller and Jerome Belcher for figuring out a safe way to change out the parking lot light bulbs."
The Betts family, a candle of joy: "We are happy to celebrate Tonia's birthday here today with everyone."
Rev. Syltie lit a candle for her granddaughter who had a trip to the ER on Thanksgiving weekend, following an elbow injury while playing with other children at The Mountain in North Carolina. "She is fine now--and her mom and dad have recovered, as well."   

If you have pastoral care needs, please contact the
Reverend Alice Syltie at revaluu@aol.comBarbara 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 15-16 Board Members


President: Laurel Bollinger 

Vice-President: Angel Hundley 

Secretary: Ed Bernstein           

Treasurer: Jerome Belcher   

Trustees: Millicent Simmons, John Fox, & Denise Runnels 


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 Laurel Bollinger, 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
on Tuesday, December 15th, 2015 at 6:30 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: Laurel Bollinger  

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.