Happy Friday!

We have several important announcements in this edition of Friday News that I would like to draw your attention to:

  • Covid rates are beginning a rapid decline…but they are still extraordinarily high. While most of the severe impact is on the unvaccinated (and un-boosted), our hospitals remain at or over capacity. In addition, our youngest cannot yet be vaccinated. Until the rates fall to a much lower risk level, Sunday services will continue to be online only. Please use the Live-Stream link that is sent on Sunday mornings, or search First UU Columbus on YouTube.
  • The mid-year meeting has been postponed to February 20th. Please read more about this move below.
  • This is week two of the auction. Be sure to check out the announcement below for how to get your bids in!
  • The Grief Recovery Group has been postponed until they get more registrants. If you are interested in participating, check out their announcement below.
  • Last week we announced the Widow Group but there has been some confusion around who is invited to participate. This group is open to anyone who has lost a spouse – regardless of gender. Please see their announcement below for more information.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out!

Virtual hugs,

Kelli McNeal
Director of Congregational Life

*Please let Kelli know of any announcements you would like in Friday News by 8 pm Wednesday, and put “Friday News” in the subject line – so that we can be sure to not miss your email! Let us know if you have any questions!

For your protection from scammers and stalkers, we have an OPT IN directory. You have to let us know if you want your name and contact information included! If you do not let us know using the OPT IN option, you will not be included. And your church friends will have a hard time reaching out to you.

If you would like to be included in the directory, please fill out this membership update form and let us know which information you would and wouldn’t like listed. If you are a member and would like a copy of the directory, please contact Marian Garcia in the front office.



Announcements at a Glance

  • Sunday Service – 1/30
  • How to Attend the Service
  • January Soul Matters Packets
  • First UU Auction “Fun, Fun, & Frolic” Week!
  • Auction Celebration – 2/5
  • Mid-Year Meeting POSTPONED
  • Bob Aldridge Celebration of Life
  • Continuing Bonds – 1/27
  • Grief Recovery – 1/24
  • School for Young Children Applications – 2/18
  • Columbus Vaccine Clinics
  • CER Winter Institute – Feb 18-21
  • UUA General Assembly – Register Now!
  • Read Aloud: Blizzard
  • Volunteers Teachers Needed


Sunday Service – January 30, 2022
Please join us Sunday, January 30, for our service
All Part of the FamilyWe all come with our unique gifts and talents. And we come with our own needs and desires. Being a part of a covenanted community, we are all a part of the family. Taking inspiration from the hit Disney movie Encanto, we’ll look at how we are all a necessary part of this First UU family.

Worship Presenter: Kelli McNeal

How to Attend the Service
1.) Watch the service broadcast live, through the livestream on our Youtube channel! Visit firstuucolumbus.org/sunday for the link!

2.) Find service recordings and watch them later, through our website!

January Soul Matters Packets
The January Soul Matters Packets are ready for your viewing pleasure! This month, our theme is Living with Intention. We will not be mass mailing the packets this year, but you can find them in digital version in Friday News, printed copies at the Church, or you can request a mailed copy from Marian Garcia.

You can find the digital versions here: General Packet (for all ages); Soulful Home (UU activities to do as a family).

Week 2 of the Auction – Fun, Fun & Frolic!

Today is the first day to bid on items in Fun, Fun & Frolic! Go to http://togetherauction.com/firstuu and place your bids until midnight on Friday, February 4th. Don’t forget to look through all the pages of offerings. There are many unique events, amazing dinners, delicious foods, services, excursions, vacation lodging, tickets, etc. – don’t miss out!
Join us Saturday February 5th for our Auction Celebration

Our Auction Celebration including a live auction and music by Bill Foley will be Saturday, February 5th from 6:30 to 8:30pm via zoom. Click this link to join the celebration!

First UU Mid-year Meeting – POSTPONED
The Mid-year Meeting that was scheduled for this upcoming Sunday has been postponed as was announced at the service last week. In order to provide the constitutionally required 30 day period of review for changes to the Constitution, the mid-year meeting has been moved to FEBRUARY 20th following the Sunday service. The electronic voting period for members will continue until 12 noon that day. (If you have not received you electronic ballot, please let Don Jones know.) The meeting will be online. We will need a quorum, so if you are a member, please plan to attend!
Bob Aldridge Celebration of Life
Bob Aldridge, a long time member of First UU, passed on January 27th. Please join us for a celebration of Bob’s life on Saturday, March 5th at 2:00 pm. His service will be at the church.
Continuing Bonds – A Group for all who have lost a spouse

Widowhood is a journey… one that cannot be understood until experienced, an experience unimaginable. And spousal grief is one of those kinds of experience that is unlike any other kind of grief. It’s constructing a new identity. We are opening another widowed support group at First UU to provide a place to meet and be with others who have lost their partners, others who understand your loss. Being around a group that shares this experience can provide support from feeling isolated and alone, as well as a chance to talk about things that others may not be comfortable discussing. This can be a place where you can say “how are you doing” in an open way that only others who have had this devastating experience can listen to and understand.

Nancy McDonald-Kenworthy will facilitate the group. She has been widowed more than once and has a PhD in Cultural Studies where she focused on an online widowed group that she was a part of called WidowNet. She studied the stories of hundreds of spousal grievers who told narratives that showed distinct differences from the cultural beliefs of non-widowed, including and especially many psychologists, starting with Freud et al. In her research she has studied grief theories, identity, and technology through the lens of a post-modern folklorist.

A Zoom organizational gathering will be on Thursday January 27 at 3:00pm. For more information, please contact Nancy McDonald-Kenworthy. Everyone who has lost a spouse is invited to attend. 

Grief Recovery – POSTPONED
Whether your loss is from Pandemic Grief, Death, Divorce, End of a Relationship, Loss of a Career, Health, Loss of Trust, Faith, or Feeling of Safety, you are invited to attend our Grief Recovery Method program.

The 8-week program will be held on Mondays from 7-9 pm as soon as we have 4 registrants.

We will meet in person at First UU. Masks are required and social distancing encouraged. The Grief Recovery Method Outreach Program provides partnerships and guidance. The fee for all 8 weeks is $65. This includes the “Grief Recovery Handbook” by J. James & R. Friedman. Partial scholarships are available as needed.

To register or for questions/information, please contact:
Rev. Kathleen Fowler (614)264-8364 or Rev. Lynda Smith (317)402-9973

For more information, visit www.griefrecoverymethod.com and check out this attached flyer.

School for Young Children Applications Available
Application materials are now available for the School for Young Children’s 2022-23 school year. Processing of applications will begin on February 18, 2022 at 12:00 pm. Currently-enrolled students, children of church members and children from SYC alumni families receive priority consideration as long as their applications are received by February 18 at 12:00pm. SYC offers part-time classes for children aged 3-5. If you have a preschool child who will be age 3 by September 30, 2022 or older, and are interested in enrolling your child, we urge you to act promptly since we usually fill up quickly. Information and application materials can be found on SYC’s website, www.syccolumbus.org, or you can call the school office at 614-267-0254.
More Community News on Facebook
See what our community is doing, support each other, and kindle personal connections – Check out the First UU Facebook Page, and join our Facebook Group!
Columbus Vaccine Clinics
If it’s been at least six months since your last COVID shot, you are eligible for a booster! Many Columbus Public Health clinics do not require an appointment, and include the opportunity to get your flu shot, as well as free take-home COVID tests! Find a clinic near you!
Winter Institute – In Person!
Winter Institute (WI) is a long held tradition of gathering over President’s Day week-end for a mid-winter retreat at Salt Fork State Park in Cambridge, Ohio. This relaxing weekend is an intimate gathering for UUs of all ages! Enjoy outdoor activities like hiking and sledding (if there’s snow!), as well as the fireplaces and cozy corners of the lodge (not to mention, the pool and the hot tub)! Join fellow UUs to worship, play board games, make music together, or solve the community jigsaw puzzle. Our pandemic precautions include requiring vaccination, masking, and distancing. Find out more!
UU General Assembly
General Assembly is the annual gathering of Unitarian Universalists, where we conduct business of the Association, explore the theological underpinnings of our faith, and lean fully into our mission and principles. This year, we will have the option of meeting online or in-person! Join us June 22 – 26, 2022 online or in-person in Portland, Oregon! Learn more!
Blizzard Read Aloud

Watch This Week’s Story Here!

Hello First UU families! In honor of the snow, we have a fun story called Blizzard by John Rocco. This story was inspired by the Blizzard of 1978. Which I (and some of you) may remember! I recall all the roads being closed, and what felt like the whole neighborhood out shoveling everyone out on our street. We kids were out making snow forts and snow people. It was an amazing moment of community!

In this week’s story, the snow is amazing but poses an obstacle. With intention, determination, and a little creativity, our hero finds a way! A lesson we continue to visit purposefully this month, and also over and over again in our lives. We invite you to enjoy these moments of snow, and the opportunities to play together. Maybe follow up with a cup of hot chocolate! Feel free to share back any stories or pictures of your child and family at play. -Jen

Volunteer Teachers Needed

We need RE teachers and volunteers for all ages and stages – including for this spring and for 2022-2023! The need is especially great for:

  • Coming of Age teachers and mentors
  • OWL facilitators including 10-11year

If you are interested, please email Amber or fill out this form.

Parents and families: please subscribe to the Religious Exploration announcements list for more information on upcoming classes!