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Newsletter of 2nd Unitarian Church of Chicago
March 15, 2015
In This Issue...
Worship at 2U

Sunday, March 22
Service at 10:30
Preacher: Rev. Darrick Jackson
Music by Lauren Nelson

Sunday, March 29
Service at 10:30
Preacher: Rev. Adam Robersmith
Music by Kimberly Bares and MarySue Barrett

Sunday, April 5
Service at 10:30
Preacher: Rev. Adam Robersmith
Music by Carey Farrell

Sunday, April 12
Service at 10:30
Preacher: Rev. Rudra Dundzila
Music by Jim Simonis
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Children & Youth Faith Development Schedule
 
Child care for infants and toddlers is available every Sunday in the Green Caterpillar room.

Sunday, March 22
Spirit Play
UU Explorers
Youth Group

Sunday, March 29
Intergenerational service: no classes

Sunday, April 5
Spirit Play
UU Explorers

Sunday, April 12
Spirit Play
UU Explorers
Youth Group
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Church Office Information & Staff

Minister
773-549-0260, ext. 13
Office Hours:
Wed-Thurs evenings, other days & times by appointment
 
Dir. of Faith Development
773-549-0260, ext. 12
Office Hours:
Sun 9:00-3:00
Other days & times by appointment

Congregational Administrator
773-549-0260, ext. 10
Office Hours: 
Mon-Thurs 10:00-4:00 
 
Community Minister
773-593-7500
 
Music Director
                                  
2U Ministry Leaders

Board of Trustees

Adult Faith Dev.

Bookstore

Buddhist Fellowship

Building & Grounds

Committee on Ministry

Covenant of Earth & Sky

Fellowship Committee

Finance Committee

Green Sanctuary

Hospitality 

Library

Lifespan Faith Dev.

Membership

Music

Newsletter

Night Ministry Outreach

Pastoral Care

Safe Congregations 

Senior Luncheon

Small Group Ministry

Social Justice

Sunday Services

Transylvania Church

Webmaster

Young Adult Group
David Dyer
Stephanie Bens
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Board of Trustees 
 
 






                                  
How Much Pledge Does A Pledge Mean?
In our last article we mentioned that Second Unitarian depends on us for its survival, and for us to depend on it to be there when we need it, we must support it through the year. One way we do this is through making a pledge of our financial support.

Our pledges are not contracts - they are pledges, and by the "honest in our communications" covenant we should consider it a sincere commitment. This does not mean that a pledge cannot be changed no matter what, but we understand that if life events impact your financial situation, negatively or positively, you can revise your pledge as necessary -- in either direction. Remember that the purpose of pledging is to allow the Board of Trustees to budget and plan the financial trajectory for the church year, and the results of pledging are used to modify the draft budget - hopefully in the direction of our proposed goals.

The purpose of the Canvass is to foster some reflection on giving, collect your pledge information, and promote communication between us. While it may be a bit odd to speak of financial and spiritual together, being Canvassed is a conversation that should incorporate sharing from both people and a loving premise - after all you will be discussing your common church home. Sometimes being Canvassed may be the briefest conversation necessary, but usually there is mutual benefit in taking some time together to talk about what you enjoy about 2U and some ways to make it better, invoking and expressing both your vision and your generosity.

The amount of your pledge should make it meaningful, spiritually and financially. It should be felt in your budget, as a significant but not overwhelming factor. If your pledge doesn't affect how you use your money, it may lack the sort of meaning that it could if you allowed your gift to grow. Your Canvasser will have some materials that show specific goals and changes for the coming church year -- if the resources can support them. Also there are charts that easily illustrate different levels of giving and income, and emphasizes the near-term goal of structuring our budget in a more responsibly sustainable level. Please use the information to assess your current generosity, and look toward where you can hopefully reach further this year.

For most of us 2U is at the center, but not the entirety, of our charitable giving. There is a difference, though: most charities have a broad funding base, perhaps thousands of people, but the people comprising that base usually do not know or have much contact with each other. This is how 2U is vitally different, and we ask you to reflect on the fact that you know and care for many of the 200 or so members here. Sure, we each have folks nearer our ages or interests that we engage more deeply with, but part of the energy here is knowing each other, especially when we work with those we know less well and witness them doing amazing things.  Keep in mind at those times that you can do amazing things working within that energy too . . . but as our covenant reminds us - it is a couplet: "our energy and resources".  The energy is here, as are you, but to keep it alive and the church moving, we need your unstinting contribution. So THANK YOU for your past support, THANK YOU for your support of the 2015 canvass, and PLEASE be as generous as you are able.

~The Canvass Team
Welcome to our newest 2U members!

Amanda Baranowski and Dan Clarahan recently chose Second Unitarian as the place where they will celebrate their faith together. Amanda grew up in the suburbs and moved to Chicago after graduating from Michigan State. Dan grew up in Quad City and before moving to Chicago attended Iowa State University.  Both Amanda and Dan served in the Peace Corps; Amanda in Paraguay and Dan in El Salvador. Amanda is an elementary school Spanish teacher and Dan works for a Loop software company. When they are not busy planning their upcoming wedding, Amanda and Dan enjoy running and listening to live music. Welcome Amanda and Dan!
 

From the Committee on Ministries
One of the important functions of the Committee on Ministries is to review the pastor. This is an opportunity for members and friends of 2U to reflect on Rev. Adam's ministry and provide constructive feedback.

This year, COM held a series of feedback sessions using Appreciative Inquiry (AI), where participants were asked to share appreciations, envision what might be, engage in a dialogue and discuss how they might act. COM received much thoughtful input from the feedback sessions and through personal conversations and e-mail.

At the end of January, COM delivered a confidential report to the Personnel Committee of the 2U Board of Trustees that condensed and summarized the dialog. COM would like to thank all those who participated. Though the formal review period is over, COM always welcomes input on how to improve the life of 2U and thoughts on things we do well. This Spring, the COM be working with Rev. Rudra to gather feedback for his UUA fellowshipping process, too.
2U Social Justice Praxis Group
The New Jim Crow & Queer Injustice
Thursdays, 6:15 - 8:45p
Mar. 19, Apr. 2, Apr. 16, Apr. 30, May 14, May 28, June 11


2U's Prison and Restorative Justice Action Team invites you to participate in a 7-session Book Club & Praxis Group. Praxis is the cycle of study, action, and reflection. Participants will focus on one of two books: The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander and Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of LGBT People in the United States. Each session, we'll meet with others reading our book to discuss lessons from a particular section, then meet as a big group to take action in support of local organizing against the criminal punishment system and towards alternatives.

 

We know not everyone is able to make a regular bi-weekly commitment. It is NOT necessary to attend every session, though it is recommended. There will be several actions that occur outside of our regular Thursday sessions. We encourage people to attend when they are able.

 

We'll meet in the Palmer Room every two Thursdays, 6:15p starting March 19th. We ask you RSVP to meganselby@gmail.com or sign up in the Palmer Room after service. Since we'll meet during "dinner time" we hope to have food available. When you sign-up please indicate if you are able to bring a dish to share for one of the sessions.

Ostara/Spring Equinox
Saturday, March 21st at 7:00 PM
 
All are welcome to join Covenant of Earth and Sky, 2U's CUUPS Chapter, for Ostara/Spring Equinox. Saturday, March 21st at 7pm.

At this time of year, Light and Dark are of equal length. The Goddess Eoster is honored with her sacred animal the Hare. The Green Man is also celebrated at this cross-quarter. Eggs are a sacred symbol at this time of year indicating growth and renewal. We will be decorating naturally dyed eggs with ancient pagan symbols. Please bring a sweet or savory dish to share with all. Blessed Be!

If you have any questions or comments,
The Forgiving and The Forgetting
Classes From the Pastoral Care Team in 2015

The Pastoral Care Team at 2U is hosting a series of classes to provide information about approaches to planning for many aspects of the end of life. Thank you to those of you who have attended some of our session so far this year! Mark your calendars for these upcoming session dates:

  • Legal aspects of planning for end of life: Sunday, March 22, 12:00-1:30pm in Fleishman Hall. August Staas, 2U member and attorney at law, will cover considerations related to the law that you may have questions about as you age. Topics include wills, trusts, power of attorney, bequests to the church, and tissue/organ donations.
  • Death with Dignity: While not legal in Illinois, physician-aid-in-dying is an important movement in relation to end-of-life care options, so we will host two events this spring in relation to it. On Saturday, April 25, 10:00am-12:00pm, we will screen the documentary How to Die in Oregon, which tells the stories of terminally ill Oregonians, their family and friends, and their doctors, as they consider utilizing physician aid in dying. The following weekend, on Sunday, May 3, 12:00-1:30pm, we will be joined for a panel discussion by two individuals who are leading the movement to legalize physician aid in dying in Illinois: Bess Schenkier of Compassion & Choices, and Ed Gogol of Hemlock of Illinois.

Please RSVP here to help us plan for each session, and a reminder email will be sent to you the week before. The series is open to everyone, regardless of age, spot in the "planning" process, or being a 2U member or not. To help cover costs of guest speakers, we request each attendee to donate a one-time amount of $10, no matter if you attend one class or all of them. You can bring cash or check (made out to Bonnie Ewald) on the day of the event.

Please contact Nanna Cross or Bonnie Ewald with any questions.

Grief Support Groups for Members and Friends of 2U
Rev. Elizabeth Harding, a member of 2U who works as a Grief Support Counselor with Midwest Hospice and Palliative Care facilitates grief support groups for those who have recently experienced the loss of family members or close friends.  

Elizabeth is willing to do a grief 
support group at 2U but would like at least 8 participants to do the group. Please contact Nanna Cross (nannacross@ymail.com) if you are interested in participating in a grief support group at 2U. This group wouldn't meet until late spring/early summer. 
 
Elizabeth will be facilitating a group at the Bodhi Center in April, which is on Diversey and Magnolia Wednesday evenings, 7 to 8:30 PM. There is no set date for that group yet. Members and friends of 2U are welcome to join, but Elizabeth requests contacting her at work to register (847-730-1209;
eharding@carecenter.org).
Looking for Volunteers for the Pastoral Care Team
practical care
The Pastoral Care Team at 2U provides two separate ministries: a Listening Ministry and a Practical Care Ministry. Volunteers for the Listening Ministry are partnered with a church member who is experiencing a stressful life transition.

 

The Practical Care Ministry provides hands-on assistance; for example: rides, meals, emergency babysitting or light housekeeping. 2U has a tradition of providing meals for new parents after the birth of a child and for members recently discharged from the hospital. Other members request rides for a doctor's appointment or clinic visit, or rides to church.

 

The Pastoral Care Team currently has requests for rides to and from church because of the severe weather. Contact Nanna Cross if you are able to provide rides to members, either only occasionally or on a regular basis.

 

If you are interested in the Listening Ministry, contact Rev. Adam Robersmith for more information.

Lay Leaders Needed!

2U has had a long tradition of lay-led services, where we lend the pulpit to a member of our congregation for them to share something meaningful with the rest of the congregation.  Recent topics have included the poetry of Rumi, the meaning of the Green Sanctuary Committee and a patchwork service on the topic of "This I Believe..."

 

If you feel you have something to share with the congregation and would like to lead services one Sunday, please contact the Sunday Service Committee at ssc@secondunitarian.org.

Old Narthex Gallery

Susie Inverso's photographs will be on display through Sunday, March 29th in the Old Narthex Gallery at Second Unitarian. Gallery hours are Sundays 10am-12:30pm and by appointment.

The BYC Garners Unanimous Support from Lakeview Community Group
On Monday, February 9, the South East Lake View Neighbors (SELVN) voted 19-0 in favor of supporting the Broadway Youth Center (BYC) in an upcoming Special Use Permit renewal hearing with the Zoning Board of Appeal.

This zoning hearing, which happens next month, will help the BYC continue serving youth at Wellington United Church of Christ at 615 W. Wellington Ave. And having the community support the health and lives of our youth is incredibly important to Health Brown Health Center.

Both Imani Rupert, the Director of the BYC, and Michelle Wetzel, HBHC's Senior VP of Policy, Strategy, & Business Development, attended the vote to voice once again the importance of maintaining BYC's current location. And both were ecstatic when the vote was handed down.

"Having this support has been the highlight of my week. Nearly 600 youth access drop-in services each year, and it's really important that we are able to deliver these life saving services without interruption," said Rupert.

While this vote is an exciting step forward, it's also symbolic given that last year SELVN voted against the BYC, voicing concerns about safety issues that housing a program like ours could bring to the neighborhood.

"This vote really came out of a culmination of a year's worth of a hard work of building relationships and open communication with the community. But also showing them that the BYC has a highly trained and highly responsive staff who can handle certain incidents appropriately and immediately so that they didn't become a problem for the community," Wetzel said.

She added, "Now that we have support from SELVN and Alderman Tom Tunney, we feel really good about the upcoming hearing and the future of the BYC."

Interested in showing your support for BYC at the Zoning Board of Appeals Hearing? Please join them on Friday, March 20, 2015 at City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle St., in City Council chambers, time TBD. 

Choir Corner


Sing to Spring!

 

Join the choir! The 2U choir rehearses in the sanctuary on Tuesday evenings from 7:15 to 8:30. All voices are welcome. Sopranos and tenors are especially welcome! For more information, please contact our music director, Marianne Parker.

Money Matters
The weekly cost of running 2U is $5,890!

2U's annual budget for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2015 is $306,403.

For the Year to Date period July 1, 2014 to February 28, 2015:
Actual Pledges + Collection Plate =
$157,769
Budgeted Pledges + Collection Plate =
$164,147
     Surplus or (Deficit)
($6,378)

ActualBudgeted
Total Revenues Year-to-Date =$220,222$214,083
Total Expenses Year-to-Date =$211,439$204,456
     Total Surplus or (Deficit)$8,783$9,627

In February, we raised $501.64 for the collection plate sharing recipient, Black and Pink.

Thank you so much for helping to make 2U possible!
Anvil Deadlines
Have a message to put in the next Anvil? Plan ahead! Please have all submissions for the next newsletter submitted to Andrew Zallar, Congregational Administrator, at office@secondunitarian.org by noon on Monday, March 30th.