UUCH Chalice
The Overlook
Unitarian Universalist Church of Huntsville
3921 Broadmor Rd., Huntsville AL 35810  
February 4th, 2016
Vol. 16 Issue 05
In This Issue
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This Sunday, February 7th, is a Sharing Sunday!
On the first Sunday of each month, we
Share the Plate during the offering,
Share our Lunch with each other during Potluck, and
Share our Bounty by filling the Food Basket!
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!
Safe Space for Children and Youth

For the safety and enjoyment of our all-ages community, parents/guardians are asked to supervise children and youth in the church facility and grounds when they are not in their planned RE activity.
A very important note on safety at the church:
Remember that your first stop on Sunday morning is to check-in at the RE Welcome Area in the foyer and pick up a nametag. The grounds are large, and we ask as always that children be in parents' or guardians' supervision at all times, especially on the playground.
If you haven't already, please register your children and youth online and check out our "family agreements commitment."
We Want Your BOOKS!

We know UUs are Avid Readers! Save your books to donate to the UUCH Book Sale to be held in April. NOW is the time to start saving and boxing up your tax-deductible books, CDs, and DVDs. You still have time to read your more recently acquired books before donating them.
At each of our prior book sales, members and friends have collectively donated over 5,000 books. We need thousands of books to have a successful sale. So look through your shelves and stacks, and box up what you've already read. You may end up replacing them with books that you'll purchase at the sale (for a steal of a deal!).
Whenever you're ready, BOX up your books and bring them to church. Boxed books are preferred because they stack better for storage. Drop your boxes off near the door to the North Wing hall (storage wing) near the Sanctuary foyer.
We'll accept all types of books (subject only to some basic ethical considerations)...fiction, non-fiction, hardback, paperback, textbooks, children's, picture, how-to, religious, political, etc. We want your best books, your boring books, your big books, your small books, fancy books, plain books, intellectual books, silly books, any and all books you can bear to part with!
And remember, if your shelves look empty and lonely, you can always come to the sale and Buy More Books!
Awareness Through Movement!
This Saturday!
Everyone is welcome! This Feldenkrais group class is designed to improve self-awareness and mobility. The class will be verbally guided through gentle movement sequences. These new movement patterns will enable you to move with greater ease and fluidity.
This Adult RE class is drop-in, no experience necessary, and is led by Sally Locklear. Wear comfortable, loose clothing, and bring a bath towel to use as a head support.  Classes are held on Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. until further notice.
For further information, contact Nancy Finley at finleyn@uah.edu.
If you need childcare for this event, please contact Nancy at least a week before the event.
Good for Everyone!
Your Social Justice Committee is selling Certified Fair Trade and Organic coffee from the Kaffeeklatsch, and Fair Trade chocolate from Equal Exchange. There are a variety of yummy flavors, and ingredients include a clear conscience! Pick yours up in the Fellowship Hall after Sunday morning services!
Plan to Attend the Alabama Arise 2016 Legislative Preview  
To learn about the issues the Alabama Legislature will be addressing in their next legislative session (beginning in early February), come to the Main Library in Huntsville to attend the Alabama Arise 2016 Legislative Preview.
The event will be held Thursday, February 25th from 7-8:30 p.m. 
Discussion Topics will include: Stop and Debt Trap; Restore Voting Rights; Untax Groceries; Expand Medicaid; Ban the Box; Death Penalty Reform; and Fund the HTF.   
UUCH is a member organization of Alabama Arise and we are encouraged to attend! These sessions should prove to be very informative for everyone.

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UUCH Chalice
Sunday, February 7th, 2016
"Less is More" 
Amanda Schuber 

"Detachment is not that you should own nothing, but that nothing should own you." -Aliibnabi Talib

The average American home has over 300,000 items and Americans spend $1.2 trillion annually on nonessential goods. As our desire for "stuff" continues to rise, studies show that only 1 in 3 U.S adults report being truly happy with their lives.

What place does this desire for "more" have in our spiritual lives and our daily happiness? Join us this Sunday as we explore various teachings about desire, and its power in and over our lives.

Note: In an effort to improve accessibility during our worship services, this week we will be utilizing a third usher in the center aisle to assist with the offering collection. We will evaluate the effectiveness of this method after a few weeks of trying it and may adopt it as standard practice after that time.  

Also this Sunday, we Share the Plate with Friends, Inc. For more about this program, see the  article below
giving heart This Sunday in RE

We continue our shared journey with Heart Talk for Kids with all ages, this week focusing on Session 11: Needs and Requests, part 2. 

In addition, the Searchers and Transformers will be preparing for the youth-led worship on February 14th.
As a congregation-wide social justice activity, all are invited to bring to the February 14th youth-led service an item to share with the church's homeless outreach. 
The Social Justice Committee and Children and Youth Religious Education Program will be holding an RE Creative Service Sunday in March where children and youth will assemble meal packs for distribution in the community.
Needed items include individual servings of canned fruit, cracker packs, pudding cups, juice boxes, canned meat (pull-tops, e.g. Vienna sausage), travel-sized hygiene products, and gallon-sized Ziplock bags. This will be an ongoing collection through March 13th.
Nursery care (ages 0-3) will be provided as usual. 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. 
Our Shared Journey! 

The 2016 UUCH Annual Budget Drive (ABD) will start this year on Sunday, February 21st with the theme of, "Our Shared Journey!" This year we take time to celebrate some of the great things we have accomplished on OUR SHARED JOURNEY over the past few years. Then we will look at some of the places OUR SHARED JOURNEY can take us next!
Together we have done great things and will continue to do great things. Your support, my support, all of our support together is what makes great things possible through our church home.
The ABD Cottage Meetings will be held in late February through early March, in the homes of UUCH members. These Cottage Meetings are held to give you an opportunity to complete the forms for your Pledge of support while you enjoy food and fellowship with others who value and support the UUCH.
Whether you are a long-time member, or someone who only recently started coming to UUCH, your support is the key to all the great things the UUCH can accomplish. The Pledge form you'll fill out at the Cottage Meeting, along with the Pledge forms from everyone else, will be the basis for creating the annual operating budget for the 2016-2017 church year that starts in July.
SIGN UP NOW on the poster in the church fellowship hall, or  Sign up online. Several of the meetings are designated as "(CF)" (child-friendly), so your whole family can attend. Any special diets will be accommodated so that everyone is welcome at a cottage meeting. Please note any special needs on the signup form.  SIGN UP SOON!
We look forward to seeing each of you at a Cottage Meeting. 
Jason Aycock,             2016 ABD Chair
Kevin Betts,                 2016 ABD Co-chair
ARE Film Discussion on February 17th: Leadership Should Not Be
Command and Control  

Is there a failure of our educational system?
Of the 34 OECD (Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development) countries, the US spends almost twice as much per student for K-12 education as the OECD average. Only three (Austria, Norway, and Switzerland) spend more than we do. Yet we rank 21st in graduation rate. Our math test scores rank 27th, science scores rank 20th. Surely we can do better than this.
On Wednesday. February 17th from 7:00-8:00 p.m., UUCH Adult RE will facilitate a discussion of K-12 education following a 20-minute TED Talk on this subject by Sir Ken Robinson. Robinson, a very entertaining speaker, presents his ideas on the shortcomings of our educational system and on what needs to be done to improve it. Please join us and share your thoughts on relevant educational topics such as Common Core, standardized testing, charter schools, school vouchers, home schooling, teacher pay and evaluation, optional vocational training, and how they relate to our principles as UUs.    

Gary Hitt and Ed Bernstein will facilitate.
Childcare will be provided. Be sure to come early and have dinner at the Wonderful Wednesday Suppers. Contact Nancy Finley, finleyn@uah.edu for further information.
Music Notes
Pam Siegler, UUCH Choir Director

Hi all! As part of our UUCH music ministry mission to enrich congregational life and worship through music, I'd like to let you know more about the UU music professional organization I belong to and my professional credentialing process that supports vibrant and soulful music ministry in our congregation.

The Unitarian Universalist Musicians Network (UUMN) is the professional organization of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) founded in 1983 to develop and enrich music ministry in the denomination and to support the musicians who carry out this vital work. The mission of UUMN is to nurture, educate, and inspire UU music leaders to create dynamic and transformative music ministries and to model and promote excellence in shared ministry.

The Music Leadership Credentialing Program (MLCP) was developed by the UUMN to summon music leaders to their calling of music ministry, enrich their service to UU congregations, and enhance their professional perspective, skills and standing in the UUA. The hand_holding_note.jpgcurriculum is designed on three foundational areas of knowledge: music skills and resources, UU heritage and values, and leadership and interpersonal skills. The six core courses I will take in my credentialing process are Leadership and Accompaniment of Congregational Singing, Integrating Music and Worship within UU Musical Heritage, Developing and Maintaining a Music Program, Leading a Rehearsal, Ethics and Care for the Music Leader, and Anti-racism, Anti-oppression, Multicultural training. Two of these courses are offered at each UUMN Conference over a three-year period. In addition, a Professional Development Day segment helps hone the skills which round out those necessary for an enriching and successful music ministry.

Over the course of this three-year program I will be expected to develop and demonstrate the following competencies:
  • Leading congregational singing
  • Leading musical rehearsals
  • Planning and conducting worship services
  • Familiarity with musical resources, including hymnody and other forms of congregational song
  • Practical knowledge of how to build and organize a music program in a congregation
  • Understanding of UU history and values
  • Familiarity with UU congregational structure and governance
  • Application of professional ethics and standards of conduct
  • Understanding of congregations as emotional systems
  • Competency in collaborative leadership and church staff skills
  • Ability to clearly articulate a personal creative vision of music as ministry within Unitarian Universalism
  • Best practices in fostering movement towards being anti-racist, anti-oppressive, and multi-culturally competent within the congregation and beyond
As I walk this journey with you in our congregation, I have confidence this training will enhance our worship, foster our shared spiritual growth, and strengthen the connection of our hearts.If you want to read more about UUMN or MLCP go to www.uumn.org. If you'd like to share any ideas for the UUCH music program or if you'd like to get involved, email me at pamsiegler@gmail.com. I'll look forward to sharing more in upcoming newsletters.
(The information in this article was taken from www.uumn.org).
Check Your Name!
Capital Campaign Donor Plaque Names
As promised during our Capital Campaign that raised around $500,000 and enabled us to move to our current stained glass chalicebuilding, we will create a plaque to commemorate all donors who gave a donation of record for the Capital Campaign. A paper copy of that list will be placed on the wall in the Fellowship Hall from Jan. 20th until Feb. 7th. Please check this list to ensure that your name is represented as you would like, and mark it up if corrections are needed.
If you are new to UUCH and did not participate in the Capital Campaign, it's not too late to do so! You can make a donation of record specified to be for the Capital Campaign between now and Feb. 7th and be added to the plaque. If you made a donation but do not find your name on the list, please contact Alice Dilbeck at 256-656-7419 or amdilbeck@gmail.com. Please note that Capital Campaign donations are different than those for the Annual Budget Drive, which supports annual ongoing operations.
We Share the Plate with Friends, Inc.
STP logo Everyone Needs A Friend...
When a person is diagnosed with a serious illness or disability, they face a variety of new situations, treatments, and changes in lifestyle brought about by that illness. Through caring volunteers, and with no cost to the patient or their family, FRIENDS, INC. offers multiple support services to seriously ill and disabled patients, helping them to cope with their new circumstances and enabling them to maintain their independence.stpfriends
FRIENDS, INC. volunteers receive ongoing training and support. Volunteers are offered opportunities that meet their interests and availability, and are allowed great flexibility in scheduling as there is no minimum time commitment required.
FRIENDS, INC. is a non-profit organization, committed to making a positive difference in the lives of the seriously ill, disabled, and elderly in Huntsville and Madison County. As a non-profit organization, Friends, Inc. relies on grants, private donations and community support to meet our mission and vision.
*When we "Share the Plate," all cash collected on the first Sunday of each month in the quarter (January, February, and March), along with any checks noted as "Share the Plate," will be halved with Friends, Inc.
Board Notes from 1/26/2016
Your UUCH Board of Trustees last met on January 26th, 2016. On the Agenda:
  • The Board received a comprehensive report from the Accessibility Task Force. More handicapped spaces will be made available within the Sanctuary and access to them will be improved.
  • The position of Sabbatical Coordinator was established to implement programs during Rev. Syltie's upcoming three-month sabbatical absence.
  • The theme of "Our Shared Journey" will be used for the Annual Budget Drive.
--Ed Bernstein, UUCH Board Secretary
votives Care List 
At our Circle of Candles on Sunday, January 31st, candles were lit for:

Lynsie Lamitie and Mac McSherry
, a candle of joy: "We are getting married in early October!"

Angel Hundley
, a candle of concern: "My dad starts radiation and chemo for throat cancer next week."
Audrey Fox, a candle of joy: "My carpal tunnel release surgery went well, and I am recovering nicely. Back to knitting small amounts again. Thank you to everyone for your help and support for us!"
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, Jon 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, February 23rd, 2016 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.