Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
8690 Yankee St. Dayton, OH 45458
MVUUF's Forum September, 2016
Service Topics for September, 2016
Invitation and Hospitality is our worship theme for September. Hospitality begins with an invitation. Our September 11th Water Ingathering Service will invite you to "wade in the water," flowing out of the story of Thomas Potter and John Murray from our Universalist heritage. This will be our worship for all ages service this month. Our new Music Director, Brad Mattingly, begins his official role in worship this day. Please bring a small quantity of water that is meaningful to share with the community, perhaps from a river, stream, lake, pond or puddle that you find inspiring.
Rev. Greg Martin will speak on The Art of Invitation on September 18. He will share the story of how he was invited to become a Unitarian Universalist and the importance of the invitation. We will dedicate our religious educators and teachers for the 2016-2017 year.
On the 25th, he will preach on The Heart of Hospitality. While the invitation is critical, there needs to be a receptive, hospitable community on the receiving end. This morning we will celebrate all of those who have been part of the Fellowship for 25 years or more.
| A Few Words
From Our Minister
Autumn is arriving. And that means that another year of worship, religious education, relationship-building, and social justice is beginning at MVUUF! The overarching theme for the year is Community. Many of the monthly worship themes for the year focus on the crucial elements needed for building strong and healthy communities: Invitation and Hospitality, Sanctuary, Abundance and Generosity, Gifts, and Belonging. Other themes focus on qualities like Courage and Resilience. And some, Cosmos for one, remind us of the larger community, the interdependent web of all existence of which we are all a part.
One of the focus areas in this Fellowship is building restorative community. So many who seek this community out have experienced the wounds of life. Sometimes they've been branded for their unconventional ideas or opinions, or rejected by family or religious communities for their gender or sexual orientation, or excluded for reasons of prejudice or race from opportunities or participation in the wider community. We provide a place and relationships for welcome, radical acceptance, support, spiritual growth and healing. We help people find courage, self, and even discover their voice. But we aim not just to restore. Transforming community is an equally important focus. Once you have found accepting and supportive community and a bit of healing, we seek to encourage you to identify your unique gifts, find your purpose, and engage in serving the larger society and world. We are designed to receive and give back. Creating a more just, sustainable, and loving and compassionate world is our goal. I am excited to begin the journey into deeper community with you.
Of course, being part of community also means saying hellos and goodbyes. We welcome new Music Director, Brad Mattingly, this month. Brad is a gifted vocalist and guitarist and an experienced worship leader. He has been hired to inspire and develop the talents of many musicians in offering their gifts and creating a vital congregational singing voice. He is definitely a people person, and aims to foster community wherever he goes. We've also welcomed many new faces to the Fellowship this summer. That's good, because we've said goodbye to several people who have made a significant impact here.
Ellie & Joe Kerhin and son Tyler have moved to New Jersey. They were very active with the West Dayton Action Group, especially with the baby showers at the Wesley Center and projects at Westwood School, and teaching Our Whole Lives (OWL) among other things. And Tyler provided many smiles! Iris Mirelez also recently accepted a new position at Kent State University. Iris was a member of the Ministerial Search Committee, a Covenant Group facilitator, Chair of the Personnel Committee, and a Pastoral Associate. And then of course, there's the incomparable DRE Shannon Harper now on to new ministry with youth and young adults for the Unitarian Universalist Association. Quite a gifted bunch! We celebrate their new ventures and will miss them deeply. They all know the value of liberal religious community and leave a legacy that will help the rest of us, old and new, continue to build a vibrant community of faith and concern.
Life Around the Fellowship...
FROM THE BOARD PRESIDENT
MVUUF has the opportunity to apply and participate in an innovative new program for congregations that is designed to PUSH congregations out of areas of stagnation and into meaningful growth, development, and prosperity.
It is called The 360 Project; I learned about it at General Assembly and it was one of the most exciting workshops that I attended. It is a pilot program designed by All Souls UU of Tulsa, OK (a mega UU church of 2000 members), in partnership with the UUA.
Basically, MVUUF lay leaders, staff, and any interested congregation members would have the opportunity to participate in a customized leadership training program, working directly with the All Souls staff, UUA staff, and four other congregations of different sizes. It would be a 3-hour commitment per month to attend training modules via Skype in the comfort of our own Sanctuary.
The topics include Mission/Vision, Worship, membership, Financial Stewardship, Social Justice, Religious Education, and more. We would notify the congregation of the learning topics in advance, and invite anyone who is interested to attend.
The Board will be making a decision at our September 8th meeting about whether to apply (the application deadline in September 9th and they are only accepting 5 churches in the first year). There is a financial commitment in which we would need to raise funds, but I am confident that there will be enough people who will see this as an investment in our future prosperity, which will be returned to us many times over. This also means we have skin in the game to motivate us to maximize this opportunity.
I believe wholeheartedly that we are in a peak time for growth development, but we need the tools, training, and focus to finally break through into a "program size" church. We need this congregational-wide leadership training. This is an amazing entrepreneurial program that will be held up as a model for the hundreds of other churches in our denomination. Our success will be a part of the story that plays out. What a wonderful way to give back and grow our UU faith!
I would love your feedback! And I would welcome answering any questions or addressing any concerns. There is a video that provides an introduction to the 360 project (click HERE to check it out); the application is short, but asks some wonderfully poignant questions:
- What are our top three goals to focus on for the next year?
- What were our top three successes in the past 12 months?
- What were our top three challenges in the past 12 months?
How would YOU answer these questions?
Yours in Fellowship,
Gail Cyan, MVUUF Board President
HONORING LONG-TERM MEMBERS
Have you ever wondered why some of our members have name tags with a yellow ribbon?
Here is the answer...several years ago we honored people who had been members of MVUUF for 25 years, and we presented those name tags to them. We discovered, though, that what the Red Book showed in terms of "date of joining" and what was in people's hearts and memories was not always the same.
We are planning to add new people to "The 25 Year Club" during the worship service on September 25th. We'll check our resources, but if your heart and memory tell you that you have been a member for 25 years, please contact Ruth Rowley or Jennie Freiberger.
When we did this before, we included people who had been UUs in the Dayton area for 25 years. This time, we would like to include those who have been UU members in other churches and fellowships, as well. It would be interesting to see what other groups have inspired you!
Finally, there may be some 50-year members out there; please let us know if you are one of those.
COVENANT GROUP SIGN-UPS
NOW is the time to register as a participant in a Covenant Group, our small group ministry here at MVUUF. Every two weeks, for a period of months, you will gather with the same people to share your thoughts and listen to others. Your group will follow a covenant regarding attendance, participation, confidentiality, and more. Sign-up sheets are available at MVUUF in the Gathering Space, next to a box where you drop them after you've filled them out; you can also call or email Diane Colvin and she can make sure to get one to you.
Joining a covenant group is almost guaranteed to enhance your experience at the Fellowship. You will get to know your group as you share and listen to each other on specific topics. In addition to your regular meetings, you will engage in service projects to benefit MVUUF and the wider community.
So don't hesitate! Complete your registration and submit it before the deadline of Sunday, September 18th.
If you have questions, or need a registration form, you can contact Diane Colvin at: (937) 433-0969 or [email protected]
SUPPORT FOR THOSE WHO STRUGGLE
We've decided to begin a support group for members and friends of MVUUF who may be struggling with depression and/or anxiety. Meetings will be held weekly, and will be open to those who wish to drop in. At this point, we're still trying to gauge interest in a group of this type, so in an effort to set it at a time that works the best for as many interested people as possible, I'm asking that if you are interested to please contact me with the days and times that would work best for you. I plan to collect the information until Sunday, September 11th, and then announce a day and time for the meetings to take place.
Questions? Concerns? Contact me about that as well; I can be reached at: (513) 817-1282 or [email protected]
BABY SHOWER AT WESLEY COMMUNITY CENTER!
This fun event is being sponsored by MVUUF, St. Andrews United Methodist Church, and Tree of Life UU Congregation, and will take place on Saturday, October 15th. Once again, we have the opportunity to assist expectant and new mothers with connections to community resources and to provide essential infant items.
Donations, of both infant items and cash, for this event are currently being accepted...just look for the display in the Gathering Space!
What sort of items are they needing? Here's a list below of the items for each basket:
- Mom's gift set (small basket with several toiletries pre-wrapped in cellophane)
- 1 large blanket or quilt
- 3 receiving blankets
- 1 sleeper
- 3 onesies
- 1 baby towel
- 1 3-pack of baby wash cloths
- 1 baby hat
- 1 burp cloth
- 1 large stuffed animal
- 1 small stuffed animal
- 1 infant outfit
- 1 rattle or small hand toy
- Disposable diapers (size 1)
FALL WORK DAY OUTSIDE AT MVUUF!
Saturday, September 10th 9-11:00 a.m.
Landscaping Volunteers, We Salute & Invite You!
We have announced a few impromptu garden "work days" over the summer to work on overall landscape and exterior appearance of the Fellowship. We have had quite a few people show up to dig, cut, mulch, deadhead, carry, and get some exercise, including Adam & Ria Megnin, Sara Davis, Dawn Bellinger, Tina Porter, Mike Fanelli, and Julia, Scarlett and William Jones. Thank you!
If you don't want to commit, but enjoy getting dirty sometimes (and you know a day-lily from a dandelion), just bring your favorite tool and go for it, like Linda Tofte and Lynn Buffington have done.
Several of our members have been quietly maintaining our outdoor spaces with love and care. It's a great way to make things around the Fellowship look nice and something a group could do (e.g., Covenant Group, classes, etc.). If you cannot attend scheduled "work days" and yet would like to add beauty by maintaining a small area, it would go a long way toward increasing smiles on faces as we enter our lovely Fellowship home. If you are interested in planting, please consider native perennials that are consistent with our current plantings, good for wildlife, and not invasive.
Spots that are Claimed Available Spots
Bed on hill by sign front of sanctuary outside wall
(Dori Dick) behind sanctuary outside wall
2 beds near RE sidewalk north wall,
outside RE wing
(Maureen McCarthy) west side of curved wall
Labyrinth north side of curved wall
(Gail Cyan) (between wall and RE wing)
Large pots on curved wall 2 beds at top of RE sidewalk
(Steve Thompson) (mostly bushes)
If you have an interest in helping with any area, please contact one of us and let us know. If you have a way with power tools (or a chain saw?) please let us know! We have some dead and dying ash trees that need to be taken down.
Our next scheduled "work day" will be Saturday, September 10th, 9-11:00 a.m. All are welcome! Bring your favorite tools, work gloves, sunscreen, and water!
EVENING BOOK DISCUSSION GROUP
The Evening Book Discussion Group will meet on Tuesday, September 13th, 7:00 p.m., at the Library in the Fellowship building. We will discuss I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai, and we will also select titles for the next several meetings.
New participants are welcome! Please contact Ann Snively if you would like more information.
DAYTIME BOOK CLUB
The next meeting of the Daytime Book Club will take place on Wednesday, September 21st, 10:30 a.m., in the Founder's Room at MVUUF. We'll be discussing the book Zealot by Reza Aslan.
The October meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, October 26, where we'll discuss Miller's Valley, by Anna Quindlen. And we'll meet on Wednesday, November 16 to discuss Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf; meetings are held at 10:30 a.m., in the Founder's Room at MVUUF.
Why not consider joining us? Contact Anwyl Scott for more details.
THE ENVIRONMENTAL BOOK CLUB
This group now meets every other month, on the third Monday of that scheduled month, from 7-8:30 p.m., in the Founder's Room at MVUUF.
October 17th - The More of Less: Finding The Life You Want Under Everything You Own,
by Joshua Becker
December 19 - The Quest Of The Simple Life, by William J. Dawson
CONNECT WITH MVUUF!
Join our Online Community for Information and Sharing!
mvuuf.org is the Fellowship website where you can get the most current information about upcoming events, membership, governance, and so much more. Bookmark it!
Facebook ---The following MVUUF Facebook groups may be of general interest.
Miami Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship is our general Facebook page. You can receive these posts by searching in Facebook for "Miami Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship" and click on "like".
MVUUF Beloved Community is a "closed" but welcoming group. This page is for members and friends of MVUUF to share events, ideas and news about members. You can join the group by searching in Facebook for "MVUUF Beloved Community" and click on "Join Group".
E-Mail Lists--Yahoo Groups---The following Yahoo Groups may be of general interest.
MVUUF-News---This is the place to stay updated on the news and announcements for the Fellowship. This moderated list can accept attachments. Items are usually posted by Fellowship leaders and are intended for MVUUF events, meetings, or important announcements about members, such as:
- Official announcements from the about upcoming events and meetings, decisions, changes of policy, updates, reminders, etc.
- Occasional announcements of denominational affairs.
- Announcements of momentous moments in the life of members and friends of the Fellowship (births, marriages, deaths, etc).
To subscribe, send an email to:
Include your full name and a brief statement about why you would like to subscribe to the group.
MVUUF-bulletin_board---This is a group for those interested in sharing resources and information. The list will not accept attachments. It is the appropriate group to communicate unofficial items of general interest, such as:
- Buying or selling something
- Asking for help with computers, cat-sitting, recommendations for a plumber, etc
- Requesting help for a group generally consistent with MVUUF core values such as Planned Parenthood.
- Announcements/invitations to shows or Dayton community events.
- Calls to action for petitions or other social justice work.
To subscribe, send an email to:
Include your full name and a brief statement about why you would like to subscribe to the group.
Duplicate messages should NOT be posted to
both the News and Bulletin Board lists.
The FORUM---This is our monthly newsletter that contains more detailed descriptions of MVUUF events and groups.
The Friday E-Blast---This is a weekly update of events sent by email on Fridays. To subscribe to BOTH of these documents, click on "newsletter" on the left of our webpage and follow the directions at the top of the newsletter page.
ST. VINCENT de PAUL LUNCH
Please join us in providing food and/or serving for our long-standing second Saturday lunch ministry for women and families staying at the St. Vincent Shelter. You can sign-up for the September 10th lunch for food donations and/or serving on the clipboard in the Gathering Space, or you can contact Lynn Buffington at [email protected] or by calling or texting at (937) 657-0426. If you would like more information regarding volunteering, please take one of the info half-sheets near the sign-up sheet.
Thanks to all who pitched in providing food and/or serving the August meal! Once again, diners were appreciative of our fresh, nourishing and abundant food.
September 10th menu: sandwich filling (such as BBQ pulled pork/chicken/beef, or sloppy joes, or chicken or egg salad), vegetable dish (such as pasta salad with LOTS of veggies, cole slaw, or other vegetable), green salad, fresh fruit/fruit salad, 100% orange juice and reduced-fat milk (we use buns from St. Vincent's pantry for the sandwiches). We need several donations of most items, with each donation serving 15-20 people. Please bring all items-heated if applicable-to 120 West Apple Street in Dayton (St. Vincent de Paul Hotel) by 10:45 a.m.
INTERFAITH FOR CHANGE:
OVERCOMING ISLAMOPHOBIA AND RACISM
IN THE MIAMI VALLEY
Rev. Greg Martin and Maureen O'Meara have been attending meetings of Interfaith for Change, and the group is currently splitting its time between addressing two locally important issues: Islamophobia and Racism. Meetings usually take place on Tuesday mornings, and new members are welcome! You can contact Dr. Crystal Walker at [email protected] to be notified of future meetings.
The group will be sponsoring a "lock-in" the weekend of November 11-13 for those committed to devoting a weekend to do intensive work focusing on policy changes that are needed to address racial injustice in law enforcement. Cost of registration is $75 which includes materials, two dinners, lunch and snacks; located at the Best Western Plus Northwest, with room rates at $69.99/night (includes breakfast). Registration is open to the first 40 who apply; please contact Dr. Crystal Walker for more info and to register.
And their next meeting, September 13, 11:30 a.m., at United Theological Seminary's Center for Urban Development, will address Islamophobia. Bring your own lunch or purchase one at the Caf� (with advance notice). Please send an email to Rev. Dr. Bob Jones at [email protected] so they may have an accurate count to the Caf� for lunch orders.
FAIR TRADE COFFEE SALE!
Remember to place your order for Fair Trade coffee on the first Sunday of the month--this month it falls on September 4th!--in the Gathering Space after service, to be picked up on or after the third Sunday of the month--this month, September 18th. There are many varieties and bean grinds to choose from, including several that are organic!
You can keep up-to-date with all the happenings at MVUUF by viewing the Fellowship's calendar online, from a link to our website HERE
The calendar is updated daily, so it's always the place to check and see what's going on!
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We are a liberal religious community that embraces diversity and respects the inherent worth and dignity of every person. ALL are welcome here, no matter their race, sex, sexual/affectional orientation, gender expression, or ability.
Please visit us on Sunday mornings at 11 a.m. for our worship service---
we'd love to see you!