Rev. Talk 3-17-2022

Hello everyone!

As a kid, I remember an old TV soap opera, As the World Turns. It was a daily show and I think it ran for decades. I didn’t watch it but I loved the title. As the World Turns is a phrase so apt and adaptable, literally and figuratively.

As the world turns, so do the seasons. Spring is coming – and none too soon in my humble opinion. The vernal equinox is Monday and already, moods are lifting. Can sandals and bare feet be far behind?

OK. It might take a few more weeks to get too excited, but the crocus are blooming and the daffodils are budding. The sun is setting later and walks with Fiona are getting longer.

At church, we can see the seasons too. In addition to the flowers beginning to peak out from under layers of winter leaves, people are showing up! For the first spring in a long time, we can actually be together. And, it is wonderful. It is so good to see you.

I feel like my spirit got bogged down in the pandemic. Did yours? Is it starting to show up again?

I am feeling better than I have in a long time. The pandemic, regardless of season, was dark and isolated. And now, the light is returning and the pandemic is fading (we hope it stays that way!).

I can tell we’re back because the church is starting to brim over with people and activities again. So much life!

Here’s some of what we’re working on…
– restarting RE classes
– revitalizing the Worship Team
– a Board retreat to plan ahead!
– the budget and stewardship campaign
– music! The choirs are back!!!
– singing – we can do that again, with masks, but we can sing!
– Rainbow Connexions (for those living on the rainbow) is celebrating with a movie night
– Labor Day retreat – fun!
– classes, events, opportunities…

We may even throw a party or picnic into the mix!

As the world and seasons turn, so do our lives. As we tumble out of pandemic, let us remember one of the biggest lessons: We need to be together. 

Come, add yourself to wonderful mix of who we are at First UU. Together, we build community. Together, we are community.

See you Sunday,
🙂 Rev. Marian

Standing with Ukraine

Prayers for Ukraine and the World

Prayers for peace and safety for the Ukrainian people as they bravely defend their country from Russian aggression. Additional prayers for the people and families fleeing the danger and gratitude to all those assisting them.

Freedom and democracy live in perpetual tension with suppression and autocracy. May the people prevail, everywhere.

Ways to respond to the Ukrainian crisis:

  • Pay attention and don’t let this brutality fade from awareness. Democracy can be lost through inattention and silence, in Ukraine and at home.
  • Donate to recognized organizations, including the UU Emergency Relief Fund (info below).
  • Voice your values to officials and at the ballot box – and by helping others register to vote.
  • Support companies and organizations that have made strong statements opposing the war. Click to view Washington Post article listing companies still doing business with Russia.
  • Protect yourself from possible cyber issues by making sure your passwords are very strong and use double authentication options for logins.
Putin’s war in Ukraine has quickly escalated into a refugee crisis where [more than two million] people have been displaced across borders — with the prospect of millions more fleeing the country in the near future. And, as with any crisis, the impacts will not be evenly distributed. Already we are seeing women and children fleeing their homes without the guarantee of protection, elders and people with disabilities stranded, and people of color de-prioritized in refugee responses.

UUSC is often called to respond to unexpected crises and provide resources to communities whose needs are urgent and access to aid is limited. 

Donate to our Emergency Response Fund to ensure UUSC is always ready to provide relief, including our developing work to protect the rights of Ukrainian refugees.

As a result of our response to the Syrian refugee crisis in Eastern Europe, UUSC has strong relationships with refugee rights organizations across the region. One partner, the Hungarian Helsinki Committee, is already responding to the current crisis by providing free legal assistance, counseling, and representation, so that Ukrainian asylum seekers receive temporary protection immediately.

Instead of reacting with a one-size-fits-all approach, UUSC takes the time to identify partner organizations on the ground who are best positioned to respond. They know the affected communities and how to address the most pressing needs in a way that leads to an equitable recovery and honors the right to self-determination.

Thank you for your committed support. Please give generously in this time of great need.

In solidarity,

Mary Katherine Morn
President
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee

First UU is thrilled to host

Early Music Concert

Featuring

East of the River

Saturday, March 19 at 8pm

(Pre-concert Talk at 7:30pm)
First UU Sanctuary
This ensemble will present “HAMSA: Music of Andalusia, North Africa, and the Ottoman Empire”. More info can be found here.

First UU members receive a 50% discount on tickets using the code EMCFRIEND or by letting them know at the ticket desk when you arrive if purchasing at the door.

What do you want as we come back?
… coffee, greeters, teachers, helpers, A/V, Sunday readers, leaders, …

This is OUR church.

We make it what it is.

Volunteer opportunities abound.

Send Kelli any requests along with your availability. 🙂

We’re Open!

Woohoo!
Start coming back!

1. Sunday services: In-person or online. Masks required in the building. Live-stream is always an option.

2. RE: updates will be in RE News

3. Meetings/Small Groups: begin meeting in-person as comfortable and weather permitting. Masks required but with group consensus, masks may be removed in meetings. Request space from Marian Garcia at office@firstuucolumbus.org.

4. Choirs: Choirs are back! Want to join? Send an email to Brandon (Chalice Choir) or Michaela (Spirit of Life Choir).

5. Singing: We can sing! With masks on. LaLaLa… 🙂

Covid might not ever be gone but we have vaccines (except for the youngest) and treatments. The virus has also mutated and its health impacts are mostly not as severe for the fully vaccinated and boosted. We are in the probable shift from pandemic to endemic. In the balance of the need to be in community and be safe, we will proceed cautiously – lovingly, informed, and masked.

Our live-stream option will always be available as part of our mission to be welcoming and inclusive. We will also make many of our meetings, classes, and events accessible through multi-format options as well. Regardless of how you attend or where you are located, you are welcome here!

Fiona taking a dog park break. Chasing the ball is hard work! Most of the time, she brings the ball back.

I Spy Signs of Spring

What are the signs of spring you are seeing?

Upcoming 10am Sunday Service

In-person AND live-stream

With Only a Hat to Cover Your Heart

Rev. Dr. Marian Stewart
What does it take to have courage today? We all know fear, but do we know how to open our selves to possibility? Hint: the kids might be ahead of us! We’ll also take a look at Unitarian history and how it might guide us today.

Join us after the service for (BYO) Coffee and Community Time. It’s a great way to socialize and get to know one another. 

In-person:
This week we will also have opportunities for everyone to do something to help get people registered to vote. We’ll have art, we’ll send messages, we’ll have opportunities to get engaged. Just another way of living our values. Come, check it out.

In-person: Come on back!
Online: links will be sent Sunday morning.
Chancel Designs are created by Su Farnlacher and Denise Deschenes.

Last Sunday’s Service

Women’s History Month

Women Without Superstition

Service presented by First UU’s
Atheists, Skeptics, Humanists (ASH) group
Watch Previous Sunday Services Here
Chalice is from the UU Community Church of Washington County, Hillsboro, OR.

Celebration of Life Services

Linda Keith: Saturday, May 7th at 10am

Tom Beerman: Sunday, May 15th at 2pm

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  and Joys and Sorrows from last week:

  • Rev. Lynda Smith is again in the hospital with back pain. She is hopeful that she can have a procedure soon that may resolve her pain. Update: Lynda will have surgery this Friday.

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

Share-the-Plate 

Support local environmental efforts!

Our Share-the-Plate recipients for March is the Buckeye Environmental Network.

Buckeye Environmental Network is a non-profit that has worked for almost twenty-five years protecting Ohio’s native public forests, influencing policies and practices of our state and federal governments through grassroots organizing, media campaigns, and legal efforts. Buckeye’s goal is to empower citizens to climate stability, support clean energy solutions, and forest protection.

For more information about Buckeye Environmental Network, visit https://benohio.org.

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.

Click to Donate to Share-the-Plate

WANT TO BE INCLUDED IN THE CHURCH DIRECTORY?

For your protection from scammers, 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 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.

OPT IN to be listed in the DIRECTORY