Friday News 1-7-2021

Happy New Year!

Whew….we’re in 2022. I hope you all had a safe and festive New Years. Before you scroll to the announcements below, I wanted to highlight a few things given the state of the pandemic:

1. All Faith Forward classes scheduled for Mondays are postponed until we are able to offer the classes in a hybrid format. I am hopeful that we will start back up in February, but given the uncertainty of the rising number of cases, we will have to wait and see. I will keep you all posted.

2. Our Sunday services are moving to online only until the COVID rates begin to fall. You can watch the services through our church YouTube channel. There’s a link sent out on Sunday mornings, and the link is also available on the website. You can also search First UU Columbus in YouTube, and you’ll be able to find the stream there.

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

(Click the header to jump to that section)
  • Sunday Service – 1/9
  • How to Attend the Service
  • January Soul Matters Packets
  • Call for Nominations
  • First UU Auction Donations Needed – Due 1/19
  • Grief Recovery
  • Martin Luther King Day Rally – 1/17
  • Columbus Vaccine Clinics
  • CER Winter Institute – Feb 18-21
  • UUA General Assembly – Register Now!
  • In-Person RE Paused in January
  • Youth Group Online – 1/9
  • OWL: 13-14yr Paused in January, 8yr Postponed
  • Volunteers Teachers Needed: Spring and Beyond
Sunday Service – January 9, 2022
Please join us Sunday, January 9, for our service
Resolutions and Intentions.

Every year we make resolutions. In short order, they go by the wayside. Is there a way to align our promises with reality?

Worship Presenter: Rev. Dr. Marian Stewart

How to Attend the Service
1.) Watch the service broadcast live, through the livestream on our Youtube channel! Visit 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).

Nominations – Calling for Nominations!

Know someone who would be great? Maybe you?

Each year, your Nominating Committee identifies engaged, thoughtful and energetic congregation members for consideration and election at the Annual Meeting in June. This year, that includes:

  • 6 candidates for the 3 open seats on the Nominating Committee
  • 2 candidates for the 2 open seats on the Board of Trustees, and
  • 1 candidate for Moderator

If you would like to suggest someone for the committee’s consideration, or are interested in one of the positions yourself, please visit the Nominating Committee table in Fellowship Hall following Sunday services or let us know via this quick form.

First UU Auction Donations Needed

Our 2022 auction is quickly approaching, and we need your donations – your fellowship events, dinners, get togethers, excursions, vacation lodging, services, gift baskets, gift certificates, food items, physical items, etc. Please use this link to make your donations. The deadline for entering all donations is Wednesday, January 19. We rely on you to make our auction possible, so please donate!

Grief Recovery
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 starting January 24th.

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 and check out this attached flyer.

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!
Roadside Rally Against Racism
on Martin Luther King Jr. Day
First UU has been invited to join Bethel International United Methodist Church’s MLK Day Rally for Racial Justice. The rally will take place at 1220 Bethel Road from 3:00-4:00pm on January 17th.  We hope to see you there!
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!
Winter Institute – In Person!
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!
In Person RE Paused in January
A note from Director of Religious Exploration, Amber Scott: Local covid infection rates are very high right now! First UU will be going online through the end of January. In-person RE and church services will resume in February (pending declining case numbers).

In lieu of outdoor RE during this time, Jen will be creating a short, weekly video – with a story book for you to enjoy! We will have some accompanying ideas of things you can chat about, create, or play together at home for each week.

In light of the cold season and nestling in this week, this week’s story is Frederick by Leo Lionni. At the end of the story there are some wondering questions – such as, what would you collect for getting through the winter? And, an invitation to create a little “mouse house” with a small box, using materials from around your home. Or, perhaps a cozy space for a stuffy to nest in. We also saw that Frederick is a poet. An invitation to play with rhyming words, to create your own limerick, or even joke.

Please feel free to share pictures or stories if you take on these activities. You can email your photos and experiences to Amber or Jen to be highlighted in a future email, or share for other families to see in the church Facebook group. You are in our thoughts! – Jenifer Bojanowski

In Person RE Paused in January
Youth Group will be meeting on Zoom while in-person RE is paused in January! Upcoming dates:

  • 11:30am-1pm Sunday, 1/9
  • 11:30am-1pm Sunday, 1/23

Youth group is intended for 7th-12th graders age 12-19years. Please email Amber to be added to the YG email list!

OWL: 13-14yr Paused, 8yr Postponed
13-14yr OWL is taking January off, and the start of 8yr has been postponed! Pending lower infection rates, the 13-14yr class will return Sunday, February 6th. The class calendar will be reorganized so that the class and retreat topics that were planned for January will still be covered.

For families waiting on the pending catch-up program for 8-year olds, drawn from the K/1st Our Whole Lives sexuality curriculum, you can still register to hold your spot (even though new class dates are TBD. In the meantime, feel free to email Amber with interest or concerns that the teaching teams should take into account!

Volunteer Teachers Needed: Spring and Beyond

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!