Minister's Letter
On Sunday, the energy of spring was in the air, and the weather has certainly contributed to this feeling. Another indicator that we are moving into spring is our upcoming Annual Meeting, which technically begins our new year. The meeting is March 6, and I am inviting ALL to come whether or not you are an official member. Everyone is included in the discussions and your voice matters. We will approve the newly revised bylaws (click here to review) for Unity of Greater Portland and vote for the new board of trustees. 
 
Another indicator that spring is coming is my recent meeting with Cynthia Froehlich for planning The Season of the Earth, which follows our current Season for Nonviolence. Cynthia is a Master Gardener and is a brilliant choice to champion The Season for the Earth.
 
We are continuing with the series Keep a True Lent and this week offered some foundational Unity teachings.
 
Charles Fillmore writes in Keep a True Lent:
"There is a divine goodness at the root of all existence. It is not necessary to give in detail the place of abode of each sentient part of this central goodness, for it is there, wherever you look, and whenever you look. No man is so lowly but that at the touch of its secret spring this divine goodness may be brought to light in him. This goodness sleeps in the recesses of every mind and comes forth when least expected. Many stifle it for years, maybe for ages, but eventually its day comes, and there is a day of reckoning. This is the law of universal balance - the equilibrium of Being."
 
Others who have shared this same idea about divine goodness include Meister Eckhart, theologian and mystic. "There is in the soul something in which God dwells and there is in the soul a something in which the soul dwells in God." 
 
Trappist Monk and mystic, Thomas Merton said, "that at the center of our being is an innermost point of truth which shares not only the likeness but perhaps even the substance of God's own being."
 
On Sunday, I shared the idea of taking a daily moral inventory. To find out the details for that exercise click here to listen to the message.

Then to conclude this week's thoughts was the philosophy of denial. Fillmore says, "A great number of things that you look on as realities are simply transient shadows that can be dissipated into nothingness by your telling them the truth as to 
 their unreality."

We teach that thoughts in mind produce after their kind. If that is true, and I believe it is, then it is important to "plant" the right thoughts. It is important to have the right soil, so they grow the way you want. If you want flowers, you first have to pull the weeds; otherwise, they will crowd out the flowers and keep them from growing.
 
Gardening Rule:  When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it's a valuable plant. The same is true for us if we want good thoughts to grow in our minds: We must pull out the weeds of
  • fear
  • jealousy
  • resentment
  • selfishness
  • and anything else that keeps you playing small and not being the person you are supposed to be.
How do we do this? We get rid of the mind weeds by using statements of denial.
 
Fillmore said, "Although potentially perfect and incapable of producing a single condition of permanent consciousness out of harmony with divine Principle, many persons are impregnated with a belief of limitation, and they need the dissolving power of denial to set them free."                         

Here are the steps to denial:
  1. Admit the error (restores consciousness to clear, spiritual perception)
  2. Use statements that deny the accuracy and power of any negative, harmful, untrue belief we have.
Example:  Fear has no power over me. I am a woman/man of power! 
 
"Denials may be made in many ways. It is not always necessary to say specifically, "I deny so and so." The conscious acknowledgement that you have been incorrect in your conclusion of denial. Refusing to entertain any longer thoughts of sensual nature is denial. Withdrawing mental sustenance from low ideals is denial." ~ Charles Fillmore                                              
 
L E N T:  Let's Eliminate Negative Thoughts
 
Join us this Sunday as we welcome Elaine McGillicuddy as she shares with us her journey from her book Sing to Me and I Will Hear You. Following lunch Elaine will lead us in Dances of Universal Peace.
You are a blessing in my life,
 
Pat's Signature  
Rev. Patricia Bessey
 
If you are having a birthday in March, I have a gift for you.  It is meeting with me and completing an Annual Spiritual Checkup.  This can be done in person or by phone.  Let me know when your birthday is and that you would like to schedule a time to receive your gift.  You can email me at revpatbessey@gmail.com or revpatb@roadrunner.com
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Greater Portland, please click the PayPal button below. 

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  IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS: 
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Annual Meeting
Sunday, March 6
12:15 pm
    
We will be voting for new Board members along with new revised by-laws at the Annual Meeting.The following are nominees for the Board:

     


We have books by Paul K. Chappell, who will be doing a two-day training, the Sunday talk, and an afternoon workshop on March 11-13 (check below for more information on these events). Please stop by to check them out!

We've cleaned out some shelves in the back hallway to make room for new, donated books. Please bring in anything you are no longer wanting or needing from your bookshelves at home to share.

Feedback for the bookstore? 
Please email Steph Plourde at unitychurch@roadrunner.com.

We appreciate your business!!

 
Unity Kindness Revolution 
Upcoming Activities: 

MARCH DATES
March 2, 11:00 am - Singing at Florence House
March 11, 6:00 pm - Pizza and Sing at Logan Place
March 14, 10:30 am - Preble Street Soup Kitchen
March 16, 11:00 am - Singing at Florence House

 Sign up on Bulletin Board at church 
For more information contact Rev Elizabeth Peterson at:
unitykindnessrev@gmail.com    

Please sign-up on Bulletin Board for 
Volunteers, Crafters, and Healers.

Winter Storm Cancellations
 

Storm Policy - If the local status is considered "winter storm watch", a decision will be made by 9:00 pm the night before by the Board President and Minister. As soon as the local status is "winter storm warning", we automatically close. This would apply to all activities at the ministry - Sunday and weekday events.
 
Definitions: A storm watch means that the weather has the chance of turning into a storm. A storm warning means that the weather has turned bad; and is headed your way.
 
Our policy is caution, we always want you to be safe in your travels. If you have questions about "IF" a class or service will be held due to weather conditions, you may call 893-1233 and press #4 for storm cancellation information. Of course, even if a class or service is being held possibly the weather is different in your location, so please, use your own best judgment and "Be Safe". 
NEW CLASSES / WORKSHOPS / BOOK STUDIES 
SPECIAL SERVICES / MOVIES / RETREATS:


 Elaine McGillicuddy
Former Nun, Peace Activist, Yoga Instructor, Poet and Author
Sunday, February 28

Guest Speaker  10:00 am

Continuing with the Season for Nonviolence, please join Unity of Greater Portland on February 28 at 10:00 am as we welcome guest speaker Elaine McGillicuddy.  In 1989 Elaine, together with her husband Francis, was awarded the PeaceMaker of the Year award from Peace Action Maine. Now, 27 years later, Elaine will share with us stories spanning 40 years that illustrate their efforts as peacemakers.

Workshop at 12:15 pm
Elaine G. McGillicuddy, a certified leader of the Dances of Universal Peace (DUP) since 1997, will lead these participatory, meditative, circle "dances" which use the sacred words of the world's various religious traditions in chants/melodies and simple movements - to pray. They're "body prayers."  

WHAT ARE THE DANCES OF UNIVERSAL PEACE?
Created 30 years ago by Sufi Teacher Samuel L. Lewis, they combine the chanting of resonant sacred phrases which have been repeated in devotion for thousands of years with simple folk movements drawn from the world's religious traditions.
Originally envisioned as a vehicle to promote peace by focusing on what deeply unites us - the One Source of all life - the Dances have now spread to 25 countries across five continents.

They are a kind of "visible 'peace demonstration,' a form of therapeutic movement reeducation to heal the roots of war manifest in the fear and superstition between peoples of various cultures." Neil Douglas Klotz adds: "We have only begun to scratch the surface of the therapeutic potential of the Dances for bringing unity to a troubled body or body politic. They celebrate the rich diversity of life and create the sound, the motions and the vision of human cooperation."

The Dances of Universal Peace are not primarily dances but a spiritual practice. Their heart is the sacred phrase or mantra. These words of power resonating in the body can uncover new layers of personality which have before never been touched. They can also create an entrained group movement, a form of group meditation.
 
Elaine G. McGillicuddy MA, poet and writer, is a retired English teacher and a former nun. Since the death of her husband, Francis, in 2010, she has written three books. (www.elainemcgillicuddy.com).



Offered on a love offering basis.
Signup sheet on the Bulletin Board.
 

THE WAY TO PEACE:
A Spirituality of Compassion and Nonviolence
Led by Jack Seery

Tuesdays February 2 - April 12
(Except February 16 and March 15)
           6:30 pm to 8:00 pm
 
As part of the Season for Nonviolence this class is being offered with the purpose to engage in a process of personal and communal transformation through the deeper understanding of silence, compassion and nonviolence. Through readings, presentation and discussion, participants will understand the breadth and complexity of these concepts and their application to our lives. We will support each other as we enter into this way to peace. 
 
Readings:
            Michael Nagler         The Search for a Nonviolent Future
            Karen Armstrong      Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life
 
Class is offered on a love offering basis. 
Books are available in the bookstore at a 10% discount. 
Open to all; not a closed class.

Keep a True Lent 
With Revs. Pat & LeRoy
February 10 - March 16
Wednesdays 6:30 to 8:00 pm

Why take this class?
  • To draw Truth out of the material presented and to recognize and apply these teachings in your own life.
  • To acquaint you with Charles Fillmore's teaching of practical Christianity
  • To have a realization during the six weeks that will take this material from an intellectual experience to an awareness experience.
Offered on a love offering basis
Books will be available for purchase in bookstore for 10% discount
SEE credit available
Open to all; not a closed class.

Peace Leadership
in  Difficult Times

2-DAY TRAINING...MARCH 11 & 12, 2016
9:30 am - 4:30 pm (both days lunch included)

UNITY OF GREATER PORTLAND
54 RIVER ROAD  WINDHAM, MAINE (I/2 mile over the Westbrook line)
PREREGISTRATION REQUIRED...SEATING LIMITED...207-893-1233 X5

Cost:  Donation                                       www.unitygreaterportland.org
 

-- The Foundations and Skills of Peace Leadership

-- Conflict Resolution in a Workplace or Social Movement

-- How to Combat Deception and Dehumanization

-- How to Be Persuasive and Go Beyond Preaching to the Choir

-- Learn the Power of Waging Peace

-- The Tactics and Strategies of Effective Action

 

Paul K. Chappell is a West Point graduate, Iraq War veteran, and former army captain who serves as Peace Leadership Director of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. Part African-American, part Asian, and part Caucasian, Chappell grew up in a violent household in Alabama with a father who fought in the Korean and Vietnam wars. Chappell's most recent book in his seven book Road to Peace series is The Art of Waging Peace.




Sunday, March 13, 2016
Sunday Service 10:00 am - 11:30 am

Paul K. Chappell
West Point Graduate, Iraq War Veteran,
Peace Leadership Director of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

Workshop 12:15 pm - 2:15 pm
Offered on a love offering basis


THE WAY OF SILENCE
An invitation from Jack Seery
 
This is an invitation to join with members of the Unity of Greater Portland community for a day of silence in community. It is an opportunity to withdraw from the constant noise and demands of our lives and listen to our inner voice, the inner voice of our authentic self, the inner voice of God, however experienced. Being in community creates a supportive atmosphere that allows us to surrender into that silence. Being in silence creates a deeper sense of community.
 
Saturday, March 19
9:30 am to 3:00pm
 
At Unity of Greater Portland
54 River Road
Windham, Maine
 
Lunch will be provided
 
This will be offered on a love offering (Retreat and Lunch)

 
March 20, 2016
12:15 pm

Sponsored by Unity's Youth Ed 
 
Love Offering 
  ONGOING ACTIVITIES
Ongoing Activities
 
Sun    Morning Prayer Circle 9:15 a.m. in Unity Hall with Rev. Pat
Meditation 9:30-9:45 a.m. in Sanctuary
A Course in Miracles 12:30-2:00 p.m. Contact: Randall Sawyer 749-4205
Mon    * Preble Street Soup Kitchen (2nd Mon) 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Tue     Men's Spiritual Progress Group (3rd Tue) 6:30-8:00 p.m.
Women Empowering Women (3rd Tue) 6:30-8:00 p.m. 
Wed    * Florence House Sing (1st and 3rd Wed) 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.  
Prayer Circle 12:00 noon (bring lunch and stay to enjoy fellowship)
Fri       * Logan Place Pizza Party/Sing-along (2nd Fri) 6:30 p.m.
            Cancer Support Group (3rd Fri) 1:30-2:30 p.m.
Sat      Team Leader's Meeting (2nd Sat) 9:30-11:30 a.m. - closed group

* Unity Kindness Revolution Events

GENTLE REMINDERS
Online Church Directory

Join our Online directory - It's simple. Just contact the office at unitychurch@roadrunner.com or call 893-1233 Tues or Wed, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and ask for Steph, or leave a message on box 1. We ask you have been actively attending services and/or classes for at least 3 months and if you no longer are attending to please let us know that you no longer want to be on the directory. We do have to pay for the number of people who are on it and would prefer to pay for those who are actively using the directory. 

 

You are welcome to join our online directory to be able to connect with one another for social and outreach reasons - We ask you refrain from using it as a marketing tool. Your compliance if appreciated. If we receive a spamming complaint, you will be removed from access to database.


Prayer Shawls 
  
The Prayer Shawl team has Shawls and "Lapghans"(suitable 
for use with wheelchairs) available. These shawls are 
available free of charge to any one you feel would appreciate the one. Prayer shawls are made with Love and are never SOLD.  However, we do appreciate monetary donations to purchase supplies, as well as donations of yarn. 

Please see Patti LaCombe or Jan Strout, if you wish to gift a prayer shawl to someone.

God is our Source and provides us with many channels of supply. Some of those channels are the following:

   

When ordering through Amazon, if you go through Amazon Smile (smileamazon.com) and designate Unity of Greater Portland as your chosen charity, .5% of your purchase will be donated to Unity of Greater Portland.  It will show up as Unity Church of Truth, our official name, but it is us! This deal is not quite as beneficial as the old Amazon Associates Program but, if we use it, it will add up. This is a great way to still support UGP!  


Do you shop at Staples?    
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Many members of our Unity family shop at Staples and collect a few "Staples Reward Points" each month.  But if you're like me, they seldom amount to enough to really save me much money.  Then I found out that I can use the Staples Rewards Number for Unity of Greater Portland.  My points are added to those of many other members and help the church save money on much needed office supplies.

 

Staples Rewards Number for Unity Church

5000266261

   

   
Unity Recycles Ink Cartridges and gets reward for that too!

 

Also, if you want to you can drop cartridges at Staples 
and use our number and we get credit there as well. 

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When you pick up a Clynk bag in our bookstore and  

recycle your bottles in it, Unity gets a check!


Check out the gently used books in the hall by the Office.  
Leave a donation and enrich your library!


 

Thank you God for all the channels of supply you provide us with!  We are so Blessed!

Church Information

Unity of Greater Portland
Office and Bookstore are open from 
10 AM to 3 PM on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
 
Prayer Support
Minister of Prayer:
Rev. Airin Wolf - unitygpprayers@gmail.com
UGP Confidential Prayer request and Prayer Chaplain Line: 
893-1233, EXT. 3
Silent Unity Prayer Support  
1-800-NOW-PRAY  (1-800-669-7729) or www.silentunity.org
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