Rev. Talk 11-4-2021

Conversation and musings from Rev. Marian…

Happy fall everyone!

On one of my late afternoon walks this week, there was a beautiful old tree full of fall color that took my breath away. Bright golden yellows and oranges on thick branches that reached out and up into a blue autumn sky. This. This is fall.

Yet in my backyard, green leaves seemed to drop straight to the ground, magically turning brown before they landed. It happened for weeks until the frost came. When the cold came, bright green leaves suddenly filled rooftops, gutters, lawns, and driveways. It was a little otherworldly. A very strange fall.

The fall season is when I also look forward to another kind of beauty. Being in community. Yet this fall has been strange. It is as if the leaves, golden and also green, mirrored the experience.

A year and a half of burning out on Zoom and lack of social contact, I had looked forward to swinging the church doors wide, inviting everyone back home. But, the pandemic was persistent and we scaled back our plans. Live-stream is a wonderful option, but there’s nothing like being together.

But now, there is hope. The caseload numbers are falling almost as fast as the leaves. Kids are getting vaccinated, hooray! Adults are getting boosters and vaccination rates are climbing. All good.

So that means we get to begin coming back to church. We still have fewer seats in the sanctuary but we can begin to fill them up. RE is still outside until the kids get their shots. In the meantime, families are invited to come and worship together. If the caseload numbers keep falling, maybe even the choir can come back in-person. Wouldn’t that be great! It gives us something to look forward to.

My wish – shhh! – is that we can all be together for Christmas Eve. That would be a gift two years in the making. Before then, let’s start coming back and re-introducing ourselves to each other and welcome visitors and new members alike.

Just as fall scenery has provoked a sense of wonder, coming back together as a community moves my heart. I can hardly keep from smiling.

See you soon,
Rev. Marian

P.S. Don’t forget Daylight Savings Time! You get an extra hour on Sunday. 🙂

City leaders walk and talk with Clintonville leaders

10/26/21

On a bright and chilly afternoon, Rev. Marian joined area leaders in a walk around the Park of Roses. We were free to have conversation with the Mayor, Police leaders, and the Fire Chief.

Mayor Ginther was interested in how the church was surviving the pandemic. We had good conversation about budgets and the future. With police representatives, I asked about a number of justice issues, including anti-discrimination and citizen advisory boards. I also inquired about steps the city is taking to eliminate inequalities in our judicial system, including was is effectively, debtors prison. The next day, a pdf was forwarded to me on the Mayor’s action on bail reform. Please let me know if you would like a copy.

Caught in Beggar’s Night action. Members of our Youth Group had lots of fun on Halloween.
Rev. Marian and Fiona took a walk and discovered Glass Farm wetland.
What have you discovered on your walks?

Pastoral Ministry Update

The Board of Trustees has named a Search Group to find a minister to help us with pastoral care leadership for the remainder of the church year. In the meantime, the Pastoral and Caring Teams are working hard on our behalf. Rev. Marian will also offer pastoral care as needed.

We are a caring community and so many people make this a reality. It is foundational to who we are as a community. If you need anything, let us know! We are here for you.

A Place to Remember

Our Youth Group has created a place to hold our memories, losses, and prayers. It is a weaving of colorful strips of paper with our thoughts written on them. Woven together, they are a wailing wall tapestry.
You are invited to add to the tapestry.
It is located on the wall just past Beach Hall across from the kitchen.

Sunday Services

Start coming back! We miss you.

IN-PERSON
Join us in the sanctuary. Service begins at 10am.COVID caseload rates for the Columbus Metro area are continuing to fall and grade-school children are beginning to get vaccinated. As this happens, we are opening up to larger capacities. 
Masks are required in the building.
We will continue to have RE outside and BYO Coffee Hour.

~ ~ ~
LIVE-STREAM

Watch our Sunday services via live-stream on our Youtube channel.

Online Coffee Hour will be on Zoom as usual.
This week’s Coffee Hour will be hosted by our Archives group.
All are welcome.

Link reminders will be sent Sunday morning.

Justice Corner

Amanda Hays, Justice Coordinator

For the latest in First UU Justice News, click the button below.

Justice Update

Upcoming Sunday Service at 10am

“The Rise and Fall of Truth”
Rev. Dr. Marian Stewart
From tall tales to online posts, the truth gets a little murky or even lost. Spats or chasms erupt and divide. Each side defending truth at head-spinning pace. Let’s take a deep breath and look. We’ll use a math puzzle to begin.

Last Sunday’s service

“We Remember”
Rev. Dr. Marian Stewart and Rev. Kathleen Fowler
Our annual Remberance Service holds all that we love and all that we have lost. As the pandemic is fittfuly subsiding, we take a moment to pause. As a community, we come together to memorialize loved ones, honor other losses, remember abiding truths, and recommit to living fully.

Joys and Sorrows

You may request that a Caring Card be sent on behalf of the congregation at https://firstuucolumbus.org/joys-sorrows-form/.

Caring Cards last Sunday:

  • Jesse Cannon – an online Celebration of Life service will be Saturday, Nov. 6th at 2pm. Link is at top of this email.

Caring Cards last Sunday: No cards were requested.

Joys and Sorrows are shared last Sunday:

  • Lisa Oldendorp: Please send prayers and/or positive vibes for my sister in Oklahoma who was hospitalized on Friday. She is undergoing tests to determine the cause of her illness.
  • Sylvia Howe and Paul L’Herrou: Our friend Bruce died this morning of Alzheimer’s disease. Please send loving thoughts and prayers to Kathy, his wife of 41 years.
  • Marylou MacDonald: Cousin Patricia in Florida died Tuesday after being a victim of a drunk driver accident 47 years ago.

May our hearts be enlarged to hold each other’s sorrow and joy.

Share-the-Plate

Single Payer Action Network 

Our Share-the-Plate recipient for November is Sedona Grace. Sedona Grace is a public charity that provides dog food and treats, AKA Canine Care Packages, to families in need throughout central Ohio food pantries. For more information, click  here visit Sedona Grace Foundation on Facebook.

Jill Cottone from Sedona Grace will join us in-person during the service on Sunday.

Our donations have a bigger impact when we give together. Please go to www.firstuucolumbus.org/donate to support our church and our Share-the-Plate offerings.

Re-Opening Status

The Coordinating Team (CT) and the Re-opening Task Force work together each week to look the pandemic caseload numbers. We use the Risk Mitigation Chart the Re-opening Task Force built based on research, to base our decisions about building capacities for in-person services, meetings, and events.Caseload rates for the Columbus Metro area are continuing to fall and grade school children are beginning to get vaccinated. As this happens, we are opening up to larger capacities. We will continue to have RE outside. Masks are required in the building.

You can view the chart and get more information by clicking this link to COVID Act Now.

Current status (updated weekly and posted in Rev. Talk):

  • Sunday services:
    • Single service at 10am.
    • Live-streamed service via church Youtube channel (link will be sent prior to service)
    • In-person with reduced capacity in the Sanctuary (We now have a T-loop hearing assist system.)
    • Masks required in the building.
  • Coffee Hour:
    • BYO coffee/tea/etc
    • Zoom coffee hour continues for online attendees
  • RE:
    • Outside and Online RE
  • Classes, meetings, etc. (reserve space with Marian Garcia)
  • Music
    • Choirs follow Brandon, Michaela, and Barb’s direction
  • Contact Tracing
    • All groups should keep a list of attendees for possible contact tracing if someone tests positive. Send the attendance lists to Marian Garcia in the office.

Links

Live-stream @ 10am
(No passcode required)
Invite your friends and family. All are welcome.Online Coffee Hour @ 11am
Passcode: uu
Join us in-person or online.
Bring your coffee, tea, or water and join us for post-service discussion with fellow First UUers. 

Calendar events, announcements, and updates can be accessed on our website.
www.firstuucolumbus.org