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February 10, 2017
Latest News
Speaking of Stewardship
Care Network Meal Trains
Stand Up For Livable Wages and Workers' Rights
Parent's Night Out: February 18th
Caring for Our Youth
Opportunities for Music Lover
Sign-up for Board's Love and Justice Listening Session
Racial Justice Task Force Meeting on February 16
Renaissance Concert
New UU Class March 11
Wool Sock Collection
Breath of Fresh Air

Upcoming Services
February 12- "Loving the World"

 w/ Rev. Mara

9 & 11 a.m.

Musicians: Wayne Schneider and Sam Whitesell

The beloved poet Mary Oliver writes that her work is "loving the world." Related, our faith reminds us to give thanks for all the gifts of this life-for the beauty and wonder our world has to offer. But how do we carry out that task amid our deep awareness of the world's suffering? Especially in fraught times such as these, how do we continue to sing hymns of praise? In turn, how might the practices of thanks, praise, and "loving the world" sustain us?

February 19- "Seeing One Another Clearly"  

w/ Rev Mara 

9 & 11 a.m.

In his 1977 song "Turn the World Around," Harry Belafonte asks "Do you know who I am? Do I know who you are? See we one another clearly?" His questions get at the gap that sometimes arises between our perception of another person and the fullness of who they are. Our surface impressions of others can bely their human complexity - and in turn, keep us from connecting. This Sunday, we'll explore how getting beyond our initial perceptions might deepen our human connections, inform our spiritual lives and allow us to be more real with each other.

February 26-

w/ Andre Mol

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Important Dates
February 12
Classroom Sunday

Music Concert- "A Renaissance Valentine"
3:00 p.m.

February 16
Racial Justice Task Force
5:00 to 6:30

February 19
Classroom Sunday

Solidarity Sunday- Stand Up For Livable Wages and Workers Rights in Our Community

February 26
FUNday: games and play for UU kids during school vacation!

March 9 
Mother Up! A Gathering for Families

March 11
New UU Class
9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m

April 13

Mother Up! A Gathering for Families

May 11

Mother Up! A Gathering for Families

June 8

Mother Up! A Gathering for Families

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Speaking of Stewardship- Living Our Values, Now More than Ever! 
by the Stewardship Committee

Here is a wonderful example of generosity from Christina Fulton 
"When I first attended a UU church, I was about 25 years old and a single parent of a six year old.  I lived with my parents, as my full time job pretty much only allowed me to pay for daycare and gas for my car.  I had almost no discretionary income.  As I started coming to services, I instantly fell in love.  The small congregation I was attending was loving and inviting, my daughter loved her church school teacher, I joined the choir and there was just no other place I wanted to be.  So when someone asked me if I wanted to join, of course I said yes!  I signed the book!  I wanted to be a part of this place that made me feel understood and wanted.  And then came the Stewardship Campaign.  You see at this little church there was no "New UU" class to educate me about Stewardship and pledging, this was the first I'd heard about the responsibility of Stewardship.  So I listened politely, and I thought sure, they need to take care of this lovely church, they need to pay our part-time minister, I totally understand why they need members to pledge their financial support.  But I also knew that I was not even financially supporting myself and my daughter.  How could I possibly make a pledge? 
I struggled and struggled with this.  I had finally found a religious home for me and my daughter, and I didn't want to lose it.  So I set up a meeting with a member of the Stewardship Committee to let them know that I was going to have to resign my membership because I couldn't afford a pledge.  And what happened next was a true surprise.  They assured me that I did not have to resign my membership.  They taught me something that has served me well my entire lifetime.  They said that pledging is a very personal thing and that they would never expect me to pledge money that I could not afford to give.  What they did expect of me was to make a pledge that wasmeaningful to me.  That would cause me to stretch, just a little.  And that no one could say what that amount would be, except me.  And then they assured me that no one would judge me on my ability to give.  So I went home and I looked closely at how I was spending my money.  And I decided that I could pledge $120 for the year.  $10 a month.  I knew that this was going to be difficult, but I knew that I could do it.  I literally got a jar and started to put change in it every day.  Some months I didn't quite have the $10, but then other months I had a little more.  And I have to tell you that the last Sunday of each month when I brought in my pledge, it felt wonderful!!!  I was proud of my little pledge and proud of myself for fulfilling it.
Over the years as my income has increased, I have increased my pledge accordingly.  And some years, like when my daughter was in college, I had to decrease it a bit.  I no longer have a jar - although maybe I should.  But every year when the Stewardship Campaign begins, I remember my first pledge and how good it felt to put that money in the plate.  If you think you don't have enough money to make a pledge, think again.  Think if you can possibly gather enough money to make a small contribution of record each month.  And if you can, do it.  You will be glad you did.  And if you truly can't, then all you have to do is contact the Minister or the Director of Operations & Finance, and your pledge requirement will be forgiven.  No judgments.  Taking care of our congregation and meeting house takes dedication from each and every one of its members.  Each of us needs to give of our treasure (money) and of our talents (volunteer), you will be glad you did . . .I always have been."

Care Network Meal Trains
by Sarah Weber , Care Network

Some members of our community could use some extra help.  Could you make a little  extra when you are cooking for your family and share it with one of these families? Please see these meal trains for more details.  

Stand Up For Livable Wages and Workers' Rights in Our Community
by Julielyn Gibbons

The Economic Justice Task Force invites you to join us this Sunday at 12:30 for a very important Solidarity Sunday!

Stand Up For Livable Wages and Workers Rights in Our Community

When: 12:30pm, Sunday, February 19, 2017
Where: First Unitarian Universalist Society of Burlington
152 Pearl Street, Burlington, Vermont

Join us to call for a moral economy in Vermont, one that includes livable wages, family and medical leave and justice and fairness in the workplace. We invite you to learn how you can get involved in an initiative to increase our state's minimum wage to $15/hour, pushing for paid family and medical leave, protecting workers' rights here in Burlington, and supporting the efforts of University of Vermont Medical Center patient care professionals to form a union and advocate for themselves and their patients.

These struggles are building on the energy generated by the Women's March on Montpelier, to make a real difference in our community. 

Join us for song, readings and learning how to get involved and hear from speakers including UVM-Medical Center Licensed Nursing Assistants, who are organizing for a union, Reverend Mara Dowdall of the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Burlington, James Haslam of Rights & Democracy, Laurie Aunchman, President of the Vermont Federation of Nurses & Health Professionals, Kate Kanelstein of the Vermont Workers' Center and others.

For more information or questions, please contact Julielyn Gibbons, EJTF co-leader, at 
Parent's Night Out: February 18th, 4:30-8PM
by the FUUSB Youth Group

Hello UU. Parents! 

The FUUSB YUUTH Group is hosting Parents' Night Out and it's just 2 weeks away! Join us on Saturday, February 18th from 4:30 pm to 8:00 pm for a night of fun for your kids! Children ages 3-11 are welcome with a suggested donation of $20/$30 per child. There will be games, a service project, pasta dinner and movie!  Make sure to register through the Google Form below and remember to bring your child(rens') insurance card when you drop them off. 

Caring for Our Youth
by Tiffany Tillman

"Multi-generational relationships are formed when we care for each other."  Pastoral Care with Youth, UUA Youth Ministry Webinars
After watching and discussing the Pastoral Care with Youth webinar put out by the UUA this past month a whole slew of ideas emerged for how we can care for our youth.

One tangible, and relatively simple, idea that rose to the top was having members of the congregation reach out to youth by sending them cards or care packages at key times during the year.  We asked the youth for specific times they'd like to have someone from the community reach out to them, and the consensus was during mid-terms and finals (along with birthdays!).  

Are you interested in helping to care for our youth?  If so, send an email to and we'll get you connected.  This is a great opportunity to build mult-generational relationships and communities!  Thanks so much for thinking about supporting our youth during stressful times in their lives.

Opportunities for Music Lovers
by Jonathan Sands

Our Music Survey last year revealed extensive interest from the congregation in being more involved in music. Here are some options for involvement that your music committee has identified.  It would just take a few folks acting as a task force to put some of these into action and gain the appreciation of the entire congregation.   

1) Offer an occasional UU coffee house in the parlors. 
2) Provide help with publicity for concerts and events.
3) Provide support for the use of audio-visual equipment such as microphones and projectors, and maybe certain forms of technology.

Please Contact Music Committee Co-Chair Jonathan Sands with your interest.

Sign-up for Board's Love and Justice Listening Session

Come Share Your Stories! 
colorful_tree_chat.jpg Now more than ever, our Society is feeling a renewed energy in our call to stand for our values of love and justice.  In recent weeks, many of us have been acting to live out those values in new ways and with greater frequency than ever before. In the midst of this critical time in our world, your Board of Trustees wants to hear from you, as moral owners of our institution. The Board is running a series of focus groups in the coming weeks to talk together about what makes our hearts sing and fills us with pride, and what vision we share for our future. These will allow us all to step back and reflect on some deeper questions that inform our work in the world: What motivates us to act? How could we be transformed to bring more love and justice to the world?

These listening sessions are what's called "linkage" practice in our policy-based governance model.  They are a critical way for the Board to be in relationship with our larger congregation, as well as to collect information which will help it best articulate our shared vision for the future.

Sessions will be held at the following times and locations:

*Sunday, February 12th 12:30-2:30 PM, at the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Burlington Meetinghouse (feel free to bring a bag lunch, child care will be provided.)

*Wednesday, February 15th 6:00-8:00 PM, Marla Emery's house, 169 Kilarney Drive, New North End, Burlington

*Thursday, February 16th  2:00-4:00 PM , Rosanne Greco's house, 63 Four Sisters Road,  So. Burlington

*Sunday, February 19th, 6:00-8:00 PM, Michael Swaidner's house, 614 Macrae Road, Colchester

*Saturday, February 25th, 10 AM - 12 PM, at the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Burlington (a light breakfast will be provided). 

*Wednesday, March 1st, 3:00-4:30, Debby Bergh's at Wake Robin, Shelburne

*Saturday, March 4th  10AM - 12:00 PM, at the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Burlington Meetinghouse

RSVP by visiting the following link, or by calling Gene Bergman at 658-6289.

The feedback from these sessions will guide both your Board and your Senior Minister in charting our future, and will help us bring focus and power to our work in the world. Please join us!
Gene Bergman, President of your Board of Trustees
Tracy Titchner, Vice-President of your Board of Trustees
Mara Dowdall, Senior Minister

Racial Justice Task Force Meeting on February 16
by Zoe Hart 

The Racial Justice Task Force will hold its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, February 16 in the Parlors from 5:00 to 6:30. Our plan this month is to spend relatively less time on status updates of our major initiatives and instead spend more time exploring broader racial justice issues or questions that have arisen in past meetings. These include when and how to lead vs. follow in racial justice work,  questions about how we might identify individuals to interview as part of our FUUSB racial justice work discernment process, and what racial justice work looks like in this post-election time. If you're curious about or interested in the task force's work, feel free to join us.
Renaissance Concert in the Sanctuary
Sunday, February 12 at 3 pm

by Jonathan Sands

Our UU Music Committee invites you to hear the Champlain Consort present "A Renaissance Valentine".
This new group includes Herb Schroeder of our own congregation. The program features romantic Renaissance songs and also celebrates the 500th anniversary of composer Henry Isaac (1450-1517).  Consort members perform on recorders, sackbuts, violas da gamba, capped reeds, and percussion instruments to recreate the distinctive sound of English and European Renaissance music. It promises to be a uniquely enjoyable experience. Suggested donation: $15.

New UU Class March 11
by Nina Dahlstedt Buss

Would you like to learn more about Unitarian Universalism?  Find out more about our own Burlington UU Congregation?  Meet other newcomers?  If so, please sign up for the New UU Class!  The class will be held March 11th from 9am -12:30 here at the Meeting House.  There is a sign-up sheet on the bulletin board outside the Parlors or you may e-mail Nina Dahlstedt Buss at
Wool Sock Collection
by Deborah DeLadurantaye

Help improve the health and comfort of a homeless person

The Junior League hopes to deliver 300 pairs of wool and wool blend socks to Safe Harbor Health Clinic this winter to help our community's homeless. When it's cold out your feet will be toasty and warm in wool socks. Wool can absorb a high amount of moisture - much more than cotton. Wool can actually hold a third of its weight in moisture before it even starts to feel "wet." Wool keeps its insulating properties while wet.
The risk of "Trench Foot" is reduced when feet are kept clean,
warm, and dry.

Safe Harbor will distribute the wool socks to their clients. Sock
Collection ends February 28, 2017

Upcoming Sundays for Children
by Martha Dallas 

Feb 12: Classroom Sunday

Feb 19: Classroom Sunday

Feb 26: FUNday: games and play for UU kids during school vacation!