Rev Talk – June 23, 2022

Hello from Portland!

Every year, UUs from across the country gather at the annual General Assembly (GA). The meeting location rotates to various regions in the U.S.; this year we are meeting in Portland, OR, known as the City of Roses. (They are in full bloom and lovely!)  Next year, we meet close to home in Pittsburgh, PA. Let’s make plans now!

Of course, many join online (dare I claim it as one of the ‘benefits’ of the pandemic). I hope you are one of those. If not, go to to register or to attend some of the open events and services.

One of the unspoken benefits of gathering to learn and do the Association’s business, is to reunite with old friends and meet new ones. This is true as I am co-housing for the week with a wonderful group of my Canadian colleagues. And yes, Rev. Eric is here as well and I’ve said “hi” for all of us.

I’m also learning: presentations, services, debates/dialogues, meetings, in addition to conversations. And as always, one of my first stops is the bookstore. Good thing I have room in my suitcase!

These are challenging times. Our country has many issues of which you are well aware. Our denominations also has challenges, not unlike almost all denominations. But trying to lead with our values is increasingly difficult as the headwinds are growing stronger. That makes our work, our work TOGETHER, even more important and urgent. Along the way, we need to make sure we care for each other. We are needed for the long-haul. We are part of the larger conversation and our voice and actions make a difference.

I’ll be back soon and will have ideas of how we can work together. Get your ideas ready too. Together, we’ll figure out how to “transform ourselves and our world through reason and love.”

Blessings and may your summer be filled with roses,
Rev. Marian

Scenes from GA…and Portland

Rev. Bill Sinkford, Sr. Minister of First Unitarian Portland and past UUA President, addresses the opening session of the 2022 General Assembly. GA choir members are on stage as well.

Below are a few scenes from the GA Exhibit Hall, the AirBnB where Rev Marian and 9 UU colleagues are staying, and a few of the thousands of flowers that make Portland the City of Roses.


Special Offering for Ukraine

This is a thank you note from the International Convocation of UU Women. They gratefully acknowledge our donation of about $2000 to send “on the ground” aid to UUs in Romania (Transylvaia) to assist in their efforts supporting refugees and displaced Ukrainians.

First UUs generosity sent the same amount to Arkadi Gip’s Ukrainian congregation in their refugee support.

On behalf of these groups, THANK YOU for your generosity. Together, we help make a real difference in people’s lives.

This Coming Sunday
Service @ 10am

In-person AND live-stream

“From those who have, much is required.” 
~ JFK 1961

Rev. Ron Payne
First UU member and retired minister

Our summer services feature a wide range of ideas brought to us by a variety of minsters and speakers. We hope you find these services engaging and thought-provoking.

This week, we welcome Ron Payne, First UU member and retired Methodist minister.

Rev. Marian looks forward returning to the pulpit in mid-August.

Last Sunday’s Service


First UU’s Anti-Racist Allies Group
and Amanda Hays

Watch Previous Sunday Services Here
Chalice is from the UU Community Church of Washington County, Hillsboro, OR.

Celebration of Life Services

We will share information on upcoming services as we know the dates and details. As they say, watch this space…

Joys and Sorrows

You may request that a Caring Card be sent on behalf of the congregation at

This week we catch up on Joys and Sorrows from the last Sunday.

Caring Cards  and Joys and Sorrows from Sunday:

  • Julie Smyth: Please send caring thoughts to my husband, Al on the 1-year anniversary of his father Jim Smyth’s death last Father’s Day.
  • Cathy O’Neil: Jo Anne, longtime member of this church now living in Virginia, had recent extensive surgery for cancer of the jaw. She will moving to rehab soon and faces a long recovery. Cards are welcome. Please see Cathy O’Neil for details.
  • Ashley: praying for the families of the nightclub shooting victims, as today marked 6 years. We will fight for them and the right to love.
  • We healing energies go out to all those experiencing Covid and its effects. May you get well soon.

  • Traveling mercies to all those who are away from home, near and far. May you enjoy your adventures and return home safely.

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


Our Share-the-Plate recipients for June is Kaleidoscope Youth Center.



On your own terms. In your own power. This intentional, expressive community is youth-informed and youth-led. Meaning everything you’ll find in our center is designed for and by young people like you. Our diverse, experienced staff work alongside queer youth to create free programming, housing, and support services here in Columbus, and all over the state of Ohio. 

For more information about Kaleidoscope, visit

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

Click to Donate to Share-the-Plate
Fiona and her frisbee…
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. 🙂

Worship Team

Interested in presenting a service this summer?

The Worship Team is re-forming. We are looking for diversity of people, ideas, and experiences. Contact Su or Rev. Marian if you are interested.


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
First UU Reopening Status:
Masks Strongly Encouraged

Effective: April 8, 2022
modified May 8, 2002
Covid case numbers are rising even though the risk is still rated as “LOW”, we strongly recommend indoor mask usage.

We monitor the guidelines from the CDC and COVID tracking systems, and as conditions warrant, we update our First UU policies.
We encourage wearing masks as well as continued good hygiene practices. These include hand washing, sneezing into elbow, etc. as well as staying home when you are sick or not feeling well.  

  • Individuals: Masks are encouraged.
  • Small Groups: Masks are encouraged, especially if a group member requests mask usage.
  • Leaders: Make informed decisions on behalf of larger groups. This applies to services, music, events, etc. Leaders are empowered to require masks as deemed appropriate.
  • Space Usage: Continue to use additional ventilation (open doors/windows, fans) and favor open spaces. The building has high-quality ventilation systems. Masks are available.
This guidance is all about personal responsibility for self and others. We are a loving and caring community, and we are respectful of personal decisions to wear or not wear a mask. Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we work together to stay healthy and end this pandemic.