Friday News 8-27-2021

Happy Friday!

I am so excited to start rolling out the fall Adult RE schedule. As you may know, we use a curriculum named Faith Forward, which was created and developed by the UU Church of Dallas. We tested two courses last year (Spiritual Practices and UU History 101) to great success! This year, we will be offering all of the Core courses that Faith Forward offers. Next year, we will start offering the Advanced Path, which requires that you have taken, at least, Spiritual Practices, UU History 101, and UU Elevator Speech. Check out our Faith Forward page for more information about these courses, including when we will be offering them. We have both a day time and an evening time options this year, based on feedback we received last year. Our first offering will be the Beyond Inquirers course and registration is open. Let me know if you have any questions!

I also want to remind you to keep an eye on your emails for the most up to date information we have as we continue to plan for our return to in-person services on September 12th. You can find Rev. Marian’s email from yesterday here.

And, as always, please let me know of any announcements you would like in Friday News by 8 pm Wednesdays and put “Friday News” in the subject line so I can be sure to not miss your email. If you have a recurring announcement, like wanting your class or group to be announced on the third Friday of each month for example, please email me that information and I will add you to my rotation list and be sure we are all informed about the amazing offerings we have throughout the fall! (Please note: the list is starting fresh this fall so even if you were on the rotation last year, please email me the newest information you have for your group.)

Let me know if you have any questions!

Virtual hugs,

Kelli McNeal
Director of Congregational Life

Announcements at a Glance

(Click the heading to go to that group of announcements for more details)
  • Sunday Service – 8/29
  • How to watch our services
  • Sunday School Volunteers Needed!
  • Open Playground Time – weekly
  • Come Sing with Us!
  • Compensation Listening Sessions
  • Archives Needs Your Help!
  • Pathways to Membership – 9/19
  • Check out the latest Justice Update!


Sunday Service – Bring Your Cares Through the Door
Join us Sunday 8/29 for the 9th installment of our summer series, “Heartland Summer Collective,” where we will be virtually visiting congregations across the midwest. This Sunday, we will be led in worship by Reverend Kent C. McKusick, and the UU Fellowship of Ames Iowa.

We journey together through the portals of virtual sacred community to (re)discover beloved, established, and new doorways of gathering. With anticipation and longing, we carry complex layers of the pandemic experience: pain, sorrow, joy, faith, and hope. Bring all that you are as we explore the intersections of adversity, possibility, and gratitude.

Sunday Service – Ways to Watch!
1.) Join us in the sanctuary! – You are welcome to join us in the sanctuary at 10am to watch the service on screen. You must wear a mask in the building. Seating will be spaced. Come early as Nathan will play a prelude. A Board member will lead discussion after the service.

2.) The full service and Coffee Hour will be on Zoom as usual. Sunday service links will be sent out Sunday morning.

3.) Can’t watch the service live? You can catch it and all of our services through our website.


Sunday School Volunteers Needed!
Please fill out this form if you are interested in helping with classes for children and youth, starting in the fall! Thank you!

Open Playground Time
1-3pm Every Sunday (weather permitting) Sign Up Here! (For contact tracing purposes, or to volunteer to help).


Come Sing with Us!
For all those who love to sing: There is a place for you in one of First UU’s choirs! We will be starting back up again this fall, keeping current best practices in safety in mind. For this fall, First UU choirs will meet weekly for one-hour rehearsals. Singers will need to be masked and distanced, and choir members will be encouraged to sit at a distance that works best for their individual comfort. At this time, choirs will be recording songs that will be played during worship services, with the hope that, as COVID case numbers fall, we can resume in-person singing. In-person, masked soloists and small groups will alternate weeks with choir recordings. All of these practices have been decided in consultation with reopening guidelines from the CDC, singing-specific COVID research, and First UU’s Reopening Implementation Task Force.


If you are interested in singing with one of our choirs, being a soloist or in a small group, or have a question about the above guidelines, feel free to contact Director of Music Brandon Moss at Spirit of Life and Rising Voices choirs rehearse on Tuesdays (starting Aug. 31), 7:00-8:00 pm, and Chalice Choir rehearses on Thursdays (starting Sept. 2), 7:30-8:30 pm.


First UU Board Hosted Compensation Listening Sessions

From First UU’s Board of Trustees:

During the 2022 budget process, First UU’s Board of Trustees raised the concern that we may not be treating our staff fairly, as evidenced by a gap of between $100-110 thousand between UUA salary guidelines and our 2021-2022 staff pay levels.  At the June Annual Meeting, the Board shared that it would be holding a series of Listening Sessions around this issue.  We want to hear from you. These Compensation Listening Sessions will be starting this weekend, with the first to be held on Saturday morning.  The dates and times of the sessions are, as follows:
Sunday, August 29th:  Coffee hour (11:00 AM–12:15 PM)

Thursday, September 2nd:  7:00–8:15 PM

Saturday, September 25th:  9:00–10:15 AM

Tuesday, September 28th:  7:00–8:15 PM


To sign up to participate in one of the sessions, follow this link to the Compensation Listening Sessions SignupGenius:


The Archives Team Needs Your Help!

The Archives Team needs your help. Please cut out articles about UU members and letters to the Editor from UU members in the Dispatch and local publications. Write the source of the item and the date it appeared on each item, eg. Dispatch 08-18-2021. THE SOURCE AND DATE MUST APPEAR ON EACH ITEM. Place them in the Archives box in the office/workroom or mail them to Archives Team, C/O First UU Church of Columbus, 93 W. Weisheimer Rd., Columbus, OH 43214. Your help is essential and appreciated. Thank you, Your Archives Team.


Pathways to Membership Class

Our first Pathways to Membership class of the new church year is quickly approaching! If you’re considering becoming a member of First UU or would like more information about us, please join us on September 19th from 1-3 pm on Zoom. (All Pathways classes will be on Zoom until further notice.)

You can register for the class, or a future class here. Please email Kelli McNeal if you have any questions.



Justice Update
Check out our latest Justice Update to learn more about how First UU is combating food insecurity, hear some uplifting gratitude, and learn how you can defend our First Amendment rights!