|Unity Church of North Easton News|
|"We Pledge to Walk Together..."||
Volume 3, No. 23, May 25, 2014
The Mission of Unity Church
Unity Church of North Easton welcomes people into community to grow in thought, spirit, and service to others.
The Vision for Unity Church
Unity Church of North Easton's work toward wholeness is a beacon for individuals, couples, families, our congregation and wider communities. Through creative worship, programs for all ages, and outreach efforts, we continue to deepen our work to build a healthy community. We are a dynamic congregation that grows and changes with the needs of those we serve.
- As adopted by the congregation on May 18 , 2014
Unity Celebrates Marriage Equality
On Sat, May 17th, members and friends of Unity Church of North Easton gathered to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Marriage Equality in Massachusetts.
It was nine and a half years ago on November 18, 2003 that Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts, Margaret Marshall, announced the Court's historic decision that the Massachusetts Constitution guaranteed civil marriage between same sex couples. The court allowed 6 months for the Commonwealth's Town Clerks to make arrangements to allow for same sex marriages to begin on May 17, 2004.
During the six months after the original announcement, there was a host of attempts by opponents of equal marriage to block the implementation of the decision. Unity Church members took the lead locally on working to maintain equal marriage by engaging in letter writing campaigns, lobbying elected officials, writing letters to the editor, demonstrating at the Constitutional Conventions, and speaking at local demonstrations.
During the first two weeks after May 17, 2004, then Unity Church Minister Rev. Eric Cherry married 12 couples; couples that had already been in devoted relationships from five to 25 years. It was an incredible time of celebration.
We gathered together with our current minister, Rev. Kristin Grassel Schmidt, to celebrate the 10-year w
edding anniversary of many of the couples from the original 12, and to remember the shared struggle that resulted in such a joyous social change. Rev. Kristin has also been a vocal supporter of equal marriage rights, and said, "I am proud to serve among a congregation that embodies our Unitarian Universalist commitment to co-create a world where the dignity, preciousness,
and rights of all people are affirmed."
The service included a historical narrative lead by Unity Church members Cathy Adler and
o, and heartfelt comments by Town
of Easton Board of Selectman Colleen Corona, and G.L.A.D. Board of Directors member, Sandy Anderson.
Rev. Cherry was unable to attend the event as he was out of town, but he sent a video in which he shared his memories of the events 10 years ago.
Musical pieces were offered by Unity Church Music Director and Organist Richard Hill, violinist Mary V
acherweill, clarinetist Mary Ann Vacherweill, and bass soloist Bob Champagne-Willis.
Rev. Schmidt then led all interested couples, gay and straight, through a moving marriage vow renewal.
After a rousing rendition of Mendelssohn's Wedding March, all gathered on the front lawn around the Equal Marriage banner for a photo.
A reception followed, which included a slide show of many happy wedding photos from our extended community. It was a great celebration. Good to see old friends.
Thanks go out to Rev. Kristin and the Equal Marriage Celebration Committee for organizing the event: Ellen Dehm, Chair, Cathy Adler,
Mary Regan-Russo, Paula Regan-Russo, Phoebe Call, Anne Fredericks, and Bob Champagne-Willis.
The Work that
By now you know that our work on behalf of School on Wheels of Massachusetts
helps support the education of children impacted by homelessness. To read about just one of these kids' success stories, click the link below for an article from the Brockton Enterprise about Kerenne Paul's graduation from UMass Dartmouth.
Unity Church's Traditional Mother's Day Concert Raises Funds for A New Day
Unity Church's Music Committee, led by Jenn Gold, Frank Smith, and Music Director and Organist Richard Hill held another fabulous concert on Saturday, May 10th. Dick
once again masterfully put together a fine collection top musical talent, including the Potash Family, the Vacherweill Family, Bob Champagne-Willis, and Unity's own adult choir and Bell Choir.
Concert organizers Jenn and Frank solicited local businesses to purchase advertising in the concert program to bolster the concert income.
As usual, the concert was enjoyed by all in attendance and proceeds went to benefit A New Day, formerly Womensplace, who provide free and confidential counseling and advocacy to all individuals impacted by sexual violence and/or relationship violence.
Looking for Brass Notes to Shine at June Jubilee!
Dear Members and Friends,
Unity Church is looking for a few good brass notes to shine this June Jubilee!
Big, bold, brassy, notes are wanted to help polish up our June Jubilee celebration!
Are you brilliant enough to put that little light of yours in a place where it will truly shine this June?
Please make a donation to the Music Fund so we can put the wind back in the brass. Contributions of any size are most welcome and may just be the brass key needed to keep this long held and beloved tradition alive. Many hands make light work and with enough of us participating by putting a few dollars into the hat we might just be able to keep that light shinning.
So what do you say? Why don't we collectively grab that brass ring so we can keep the tradition going. Your ears will thank you!
Please make your checks payable to: Unity Church Music Fund, and in the memo line be sure to write brass for June Jubilee.
Mail to: Unity Church of North Easton, c/o of Music Committee, 9 Main Street, North Easton, MA 02356
Thanks so much,
The Music Committee
Religious Education News
The RE children have been learning about those that are homeless and what their needs are. As part of this they discussed the food needs which they have, and those who may just be less fortunate.
weekend the kids did a food raiser for the Easton Food Pantry. They raised $140 plus received some food supplies.
Great job, everyone!
by Beth McGregor, District Coordinator, GA 2014
Are You Going to General Assembly (GA)?
I hope so. It's a gift both to yourself and to your congregation-a mind and soul expanding experience, a font of new ideas and perspectives, a chance to be heard and hear others. Remember, you can register for the whole GA or by the day, and there are a few events open to the public. Here is program and registration information
. The final program and agenda will be posted very soon.Want to Help?
We'd love to have you! There are multiple opportunities:
- Be a GA Guide. The Public Witness team is looking for volunteers to assist attendees at WaterFire on June 28th. You need not be a registered GA attendee to help out with this. Great for people who know and love Providence's signature art event. Volunteer Here! There's also room for some extra help welcoming folks as they arrive in town.
Here is the WaterFire Public Witness Event Flyer
- Sing at WaterFire. As a sponsor of WaterFire, we've arranged for some UU hymns and songs to be part of the WaterFire 'sound track', and we need our Ballou Channing District (BCD) choirs to assemble to lead the singing. If you can be a part of this, and gather a group from your choir, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Singers need not be registered GA attendees.
- Donate Bowls to Combat Homelessness and Hunger. The Empty Bowls support our GA Service Project to address homelessness and hunger in Rhode Island. A variety of handmade bowls have been collected already-ceramic, pottery, papier-mâché, felted, copper, wood-and many more are needed to raise funds. The "empty bowls" provide a context for considering the innovative approaches to addressing hunger and homelessness by our beneficiary organizations, Housing First RI and McAuley House. At a booth in the Exhibit Hall and at a tent at WaterFire, the handcrafted bowls submitted by UUs will be offered for a donation. Meanwhile, the creation of bowls can be a group activity for members of your congregation, or a solitary one. Instructions for making papier-mâché or felted bowls are available from the Coordinator, Nori Duncan at email@example.com or 401-475-1678. Please contact her to pledge a bowl (or several, or many) to the service project, and to arrange for delivery. You may ship your bowls in advance or bring them to the booth at GA. For groups of bowls, it may be possible to arrange pick-up within the BCD. Watch the UU World for an upcoming article with more details about the project.
- Help Other Folks Get to GA. If you can't go yourself, how about financially supporting a youth or aspiring leader from your congregation? If you can go, how about organizing a car pool in your congregation? Traveling together, whether daily, for one occasion, or for the whole GA, saves money, driver fatigue, and the environment, and it offers the opportunity for shared experience and reflection. Get that travel signup sheet posted early, and let people know about it.
Make sure your congregation's voice is represented. Delegate credentials were mailed out to congregations at the end of February. Please see the Unity Church Executive Committee for more information.
Enjoy a Commuter's Respite
If you area day commuters (by bus, train or car), the BCD is sponsoring a "Commuter Lounge" in Salons A and B of the Biltmore Hotel,
where people can retreat for a while during the day to relax, together or alone. We've also added a Family Respite Room in the Dunkin Donuts Center
, right near the general sessions, where anyone, including parents with young children, can take a break. Invite Others Along for the Open Events
Three worship services in the Dunkin Donuts Center
are open to the public:
- the Service of the Living Tradition on Friday evening,
- the pre-WaterFire worship on Saturday evening, and
- the morning worship service on Sunday, followed by open hours at the Exhibit Hall.
All of these feature inspiring speakers and music, and the thrill of raising voices in song along with thousands of other UUs. Plus there's a lot to see and do in Providence, and there's the beauty of WaterFire. So even those who aren't registered can experience a bit of the GA magic. Encourage them to give it a try.
Looking forward to seeing you soon in Providence!
Yours in faith,
District Coordinator, GA firstname.lastname@example.org
781-784-6555(h), 781-784-5642(w), 339-364-1778(cell)
Looking for Unity Church Member Contact information?
You can find it on our web site under the Member Access menu,
after you log in as a member.
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|Photo Credits for this Issue of the Unity News|
Deanna Greenstein, Ellen Dehm, Bob Champagne-Willis, Ernest Cohen, and Cathy AdlerUnity News Contact Info
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