Friday News – July 5, 2024

Happy Friday!

I hope your celebrations of Independence Day were joyful, but if you approached the holiday with mixed feelings, you’re in good company.¬† Many of us are struggling with our feelings about the political moment we are in.

It is so important to balance our justice work with taking time to recharge and heal, to connect with our community in restorative ways.  To quote Anne Lamott, one of my favorite authors:

‚ÄúRelish, joy and pleasure are one solution to exhaustion, just for today. So is a walk around the ‚Äėhood, noticing people‚Äôs gardens, running from them when they come at you with grocery bags heavy with tomatoes and zucchini. Paying attention to real life (as opposed to cable news) relieves exhaustion, because it awakens us. It makes us laugh. Laughter is a battery charge. Laughter ‚Ķ is carbonated holiness.‚ÄĚ

So I wish for you much carbonated holiness in these fraught times.

Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley
Developmental Minister

P. S. Starr King School for the ministry is hosting a Symposium from August 26‚Äď28,¬† titled “Bravely Facing This Moment: Defending and Renewing Democracy,” available online for $15 to our community.¬† If you would like some extra tools for navigating the election season, this is available to you!

This Week
10:00am Sunday Service
“Question Box Sermon”

Presented by  Rev. Dr. Terasa Cooley

Do you have a question about Unitarian Universalism, religion, this congregation, ethics, ministry, or anything related? Rev. Terasa will try to field all comers! Submit them in advance or bring them to the service.

Curious about what people are asking? Check out submissions here!

A continental breakfast will be served before the service, starting at 9:15am. Coffee and tea remain available after the service.

First Friday Picnic

Today, July 5, 6:30pm

Bring your own picnic and meet us at the Picnic Tables south of the church!
From the Staff & Board
Upcoming Governance Meetings
  • Board of Trustees:¬†Regularly scheduled board meetings will resume on August 28 at 7pm.
  • Finance Committee: Wednesday,¬†July 17, 7‚Äď9pm¬†(Online & in person).
Curious about First UU Finances? 

Wednesday July 24, 7pm

In lieu of a Board meeting in July, Debra Boyd will lead a Financial Orientation meeting for new board members and anyone else who would like to attend.  This meeting will be a deep dive into the details about the structure of our finances and the fiduciary governance obligations of our Board of Trustees.  All are welcome! 
Welcome to our Newest Family Member
First UU Staff is just over the moon to announce the birth of Lyric Hays, born on Sunday, June 30 to Justice Minister Amanda and Jim Hays and “big brother” River.

Amanda will be on Parental leave until the beginning of October.  Save the Date for her Ordination on Saturday, November 2!

If you would like to send any well wishes, or if you need assistance with Justice Matters between now and October, reach out to Becca Morse for help figuring out who to contact.

Justice & Volunteer Opportunities
Join the Alternative Worship Team!
Would you like to help with our Nourish or Expressive Worship services? We have various roles available, such as presenting readings, leading songs or meditations, sharing stories, sourcing content, creating interactive worship pieces, creating playlists, scheduling participants, and creating and distributing promotional materials.

Your time commitment can range from doing the chalice reading once or twice a month to helping write the upcoming services at a quarterly one-day workshop. If you’re interested in being a worship associate but aren’t ready for that role yet, come develop your talents with us.

For any questions, please contact Christine.

Image by Prawny from Pixabay

Heat Emergency: Fans Needed!

Central Ohio will be experiencing record temperatures over the next two weeks ‚Äď and the summer promises more. For people living without air conditioning, this is life-threatening. The Life Care Alliance is calling for donations of fans to be distributed to families and individuals in need. It’s simple: buy a new fan (used are not accepted), and take it (them) to your local Fire Station for drop-off. Your could be saving a life.

Questions? Email Tom Baillieul.

Take Action through Mutual Aid for Trans Rights
At First UU, we have held vigils this year to mourn the anti-trans legislation passed by the Ohio Statehouse and their impact on our First UU community as well as state-wide. Ohio was unfortunately not alone as a total of 85 anti-trans bills were passed across the US in 2023, the fourth consecutive record-breaking year for anti-trans legislation in a row.

Because of these laws, trans people in the United States could meet the definition of Internally Displaced People, or IDPs, by the United Nations. Hundreds of thousands of trans people and their families have already fled their homes to safer states with more than a million considering doing so.

In this moment, we have an opportunity to do more than mourn, to act by joining UUs and organizers across the country in welcoming and affirming trans people who might be permanently relocating or leaving their homes temporarily to access gender-affirming care or for another reason through the new Pink Haven Coalition.

The Pink Haven Coalition is a joint project between frontline trans organizers, the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC), the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), other progressive faith groups, and mutual aid networks across the country. Learn more about it in this UUWorld Website Article.

If you think you might be interested in offering a homestay or another form of mutual aid such as assisting with transportation or connecting with other First UU members to find creative mutual aid solutions, please reach out to

Classes and Groups
Embracing Interdependence as a Congregation ‚Äď Exploration of Solar Panel¬†Expansion

Sunday, July 14, 11:30am Room 301,
Monday, July 22 7‚Äď8pm online,
Tuesday, July 30, 6‚Äď7pm online

(links to be provided in future Friday News)

The long June heat wave and severe flooding throughout the¬†midwest and elsewhere¬†and the prediction that the 2024 hurricane season could be one of the most active in history remind us that it is imperative that we address global warming and environmental justice. The First UU Ecojustice group is exploring reducing First UU’s building carbon footprint through the expansion of our solar panel system.

Tom Tichenor will present an overview of this effort and respond to your questions and concerns. We are still in the early stages, but our approach and possible scope will be presented. Solar Panel systems normally pay for themselves over time, and there are attractive government incentives available, so we are optimistic about attaining a budget-friendly path to expansion, including no-cost options.

Attention Rising Young Adults (RYA)!

2nd & 4th Sundays at 11:30 in Room 302

RYA is a group for emerging adults age 18-26 looking for a group of peers to connect and learn with! From life skills (adulting 101) and discussions to craft and game days, there is something for everyone! The Rising Young Adults group meets twice a month after church. Please reach out to Cameron Mangin-Betts to be added to the GroupMe!

Note: RYA will not be having its usual meeting on July 14th, our next meeting will be on July 28th. 

The Aaron Reed Men’s Spirituality Group

Wednesdays at 7:15‚Äď9:45pm

The Aaron Reed Men’s Spirituality Group meets every Wednesday at 7:15 PM via Zoom, and is currently open to new members. The group seeks to encourage and facilitate spiritual growth through¬† sharing of life experiences and¬†discussion of a topic (usually selected by the individual leading the discussion) on any given week. It is not intended to be a self-help group. For more information email¬†Bob Papps¬†or Ron Bruder.
Upcoming Events
UU Artists: “What Matters?”

Art Drop-off Sunday, August 4, 11:15‚Äď12:30
Exhibit August‚ÄďOctober

Hi Art Friends‚Äď

It is time to start thinking about the Annual UU members and friends art exhibit¬†“What Matters?” which begins in August this year.

With election, climate change, racial justice, LBGTQI+ support, telling our own stories, and more, it is difficult to choose a theme. So I have chosen the title ‚ÄúWhat Matters?‚ÄĚ

You can make a statement or honor what is important to you. (Please remember we are family friendly). Let’s use our visual voices ‚Äď Submit your art to participate!¬†Contact Deb Baillieul with your intention to participate and/or questions, or to arrange an alternate drop-off time if August 4 doesn’t work for you.

“Sea Oats” Tall grasses stretching up to the sky provide habitat for herons terns and black birds in the marshes of Cape Cod. Marshes clean our water.
Photo and Quilt “Sea Oats” by Deb Baillieul
Save the Dates!
First UU is now an Official Charitable Bingo site in the state of Ohio. Save the dates to raise money for our congregation and to win cash prizes!  Community Bingo Nights are:
  • July 19
  • August 16
  • Second Friday Nights Starting in September.

The cost is $25 for a full night of fun, concessions available at reasonable prices.

These events are for 18 and over.

Annual Multi-Generational Labor Day Retreat

Saturday, August 31 ‚Äď Monday, September 2
at Camp Oty’Okwa in beautiful Hocking Hills

Adults (26+): $135
Teen / Early YA (13‚Äď25): $110
Children (5‚Äď12): $95
Toddlers (2‚Äď4): $25
Children Under 2: Free

Come to the Labor day retreat ‚Äď This opportunity to forge deeper connections, recharge your spirit, and be inspired by the collective wisdom of our diverse community is deeply rewarding.

Nature walks and worship, campfire gatherings and sing-a-longs , and fun meals all foster a sense of togetherness and inspiration, while allowing time for personal reflection, meditation, and relaxation. And Let’s not forget happy hour, a talent show, and PEEK!

Registration will open next week: for questions or information about financial assistance please contact Patricia Boughton

Community News
Now Accepting Rummage Items!
July 27, 10am‚Äď3pm
And the
 Last Saturday of each month!

Our last Ruummage Sale was so popular that we are already gearing up for our next one!¬† Save the Date of June 7, 2025 and Keep your eyes and ears open for the announcements about our next Ruummage Sale! Meanwhile…

Did you know that First UU has a storage unit? And that we are already accepting donations at our storage unit for next year’s Ruumage Sale? Meet us at Life Storage, 4735 Evanswood Dr 43229, on the last Saturday of the month to donate your goods!

We will have volunteers on hand to help you unload your vehicle and price your items. If you are available to join our Rummage Sale volunteers, or need to make special arrangements to donate, please email Myra Hartmann.

Family Activities
Peace Camp Almost Full: Hurry 8-11yrs! 

Help us fill Week 2: tell your friends to Register Now! We will continue to contact families with registration confirmation and payment info this week.

  • 8-11years, 9am-12noon M-F,¬†8/5-8/9¬†–¬†Less Than¬†10 Spots¬†Left!
  • (Week one, 7/29-8/2, for¬†5-8years is FULL / waitlisted!)
Family Activities This Sunday, 6/30

No classes this week Рenjoy your holiday weekend! During the service children accompanied by an adult are welcome to use the games and craft materials available in the cabinets near the kitchen.

  • 9:15-9:45am Breakfast (A/B)¬†
  • 9:30-11:30am¬†Infant and Toddler Care¬†(room¬†101)
  • 10-11am¬†Worship¬†Service (sanctuary)
  • Coffee Hour, Snack after the service (Beach Hall, A/B)
Upcoming First UU Events
  • Sun¬†7/7-Sat 7/13 – Central East Region¬†Summer Institute
  • Fri 7/19 – Bingo
  • Tues 7/23 – Expressive Worship
  • Fri 7/26 – Movie Night
  • Mon 7/29-Fri 8/2 – Peace Camp A (5-8 years)
  • Fri 8/2 – First Friday Picnic
  • Sun 8/4 – Backpack Blessing¬†All Ages Service and Justice Project
  • Mon 8/5-Fri 8/9 –¬†Peace Camp B (8-11 years)
  • Sun 8/10 – Intergenerational Crafternoon Tea Party
  • Fri 8/16¬†– Bingo Glow Night
  • Sun 8/18 – Animal Blessing All Ages Service
  • Fri 8/23 – Movie Night
  • Tues 8/27 – Expressive Worship
  • Sat 8/31-Mon 9/2 – Labor Day Retreat
  • Sun 9/1 – No RE classes (enjoy your holiday!)
  • Sun 9/8 – Water Ceremony, All Ages Ingathering Service
  • Sun 9/15 – Most fall RE classes and activities begin

*RE is short for Religious Exploration, aka Sunday school programming