|Oracle Articles - Mar 2012|
Vol. 66, No. 3; March 2012
The mission of the First Unitarian Church of Orlando (1U) is to exemplify liberal religion in Central Florida with a commitment to lifelong spiritual growth and compassionate service to the community.
9:00 am & 11:30 am Sundays in Our Sanctuary
Sunday, March 4 | An Interwoven Tapestry, Rev. Kathy Schmitz
We continue our exploration of compassion with a look at what it looks like through the lens of Paganism.
Sunday, March 11 | Guest Minister, Rev. Meredith Garmon
Rev. Garmon is the minister of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Gainesville where Rev. Kathy is preaching this morning. Rev. Garmon will be accompanied by his son Yency as they discuss the challenges of immigration. Yency will also be our guest musician for the morning.
Sunday, March 18 | Why Worry? Rev. Kathy Schmitz
Worry seems to come quite naturally to many of us. What can we do to keep it from sapping us of the energy, self-confidence, and peace of mind that we need to live happy and productive lives?
Sunday, March 25 | Lay or Guest Worship Service
So, How's Sunday Morning Going?
As we approach six months on our new Sunday morning schedule, watch for opportunities later this month to let the Board know your thoughts on how it's going.
Sunday Morning Adult Education
All programs run from 10:15 -11:15am. All programs are drop-in friendly. Our three options for adult religious education on Sunday mornings continue in three venues: the Hiett Library, Room 9, and Room 18.
Sundays in the Library (Hiett Library): We continue this successful program. The first regular Sunday of each month will focus on the religion designated for that month. Both the worship service and children's religious education will have the same focus. The second or third Sunday of the month will be a Newcomer Orientation Session. Remaining Sundays will be used as needed for various offerings, including: Share-the-Plate topics, Immigration sessions, samples sessions of upcoming evening classes, the Best of UUU, and special opportunities that may arise. Let us know if you have special sessions you would like to share with our congregation.
March 4 Paganism and Compassion
This morning, we continue our exploration of compassion through the lens of world religions with a look at Paganism.
March 11 Long Strange Trip: UU Film Series Part 3: American Unitarianism (1620 - 1860), First Half
Second half will be shown on March 25. See below for full description. Ken Lofgren facilitates.
March 18 Newcomer Orientation
Are you a newcomer to our church? Come meet our minister, Reverend Kathy Schmitz, learn more about Unitarian Universalism, and get answers to any questions you may have.
March 25 Long Strange Trip: UU Film Series Part 3: American Unitarianism (1620 - 1860), Second Half. (First half shown on March 11.) Ken Lofgren facilitates. Part 3 of our series on UU History film talks about the development of Unitarianism in America from 1620 through the death of Theodore Parker in 1860. It discusses the early fractures between religious liberals and Congregationalists in Colonial America. It discusses the effect of Joseph Priestley's immigration and William Ellery Channing's role in the formation of the American Unitarian movement. It tells the story of the final split between the Unitarians and the Trinitarian Congregationalists in the 1820s from both a theological and a legal perspective. It revisits the Arian/Socinian fracture that played out here as well and the Transcendentalism of Ralph Waldo Emerson, Margaret Fuller, and Theodore Parker. It talks about the key role Fuller played in moving Transcendentalism out from a niche movement in Concord to the driving force behind Unitarianism. Finally, It discusses the role Theodore Parker played in advancing Unitarianism beyond its traditional Bible-centered roots and his role in some of the great social justice issues of the day, especially the abolition of slavery.
Green RE (Room 9): "Spirit in Practice" from a green lens. This class is designed to help students make more thoughtful decisions how they put their spirituality into practice. You can download the entire series at http://www.uua.org/re/tapestry/adults/practice/index.shtml
March 4 Workshop 4: Spiritual Partnerships
March 11 Workshop 5: Mind Practices
March 18 Workshop 6: Body Practices
March 25 Workshop 7: Soul Practices
The Community Room (Room 18, formerly the Florida District Office): This track encourages interaction between participants and was inspired by a desire to create a space for folks attending the two different services to be together. All programs welcome new participants who have not previously attended.
March 4 Spirit of Life Program: Workshop 6: Giving Life the Shape Of Justice: The Spirituality of Working for Change. Each first Sunday, we use materials from this UUA created program that seeks to bring meaning, beauty, inclusivity, and growth to Unitarian Universalist adults as they deepen their spiritual awareness and connections.
March 11 Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life: The Sixth Step: Action.
Each second Sunday, we focus on one of the steps described in Karen Armstrong's book, Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life.
March 18 Community-Building Tools
Each third Sunday, we offer an opportunity to strengthen community-building skills.
March 25 Spiritual Literacy
Each fourth Sunday, we show a video discussion series that uses short films to prompt discussion on a variety of topics.
Other Adult Programming
Francis Dávid* Café: A Drop-In Discussion Group
Friday, March 16, 7:00-9:00pm in the Hiett Library
Join Rev. Kathy as she facilitates conversation on a variety of topics, hoping to find and celebrate both our differences and our common ground. All are welcome!
*Living 500 years ago, in Transylvania, Unitarian preacher Francis Dávid is best known among modern Unitarian Universalists for saying, "You need not think alike to love alike." Come practice what he preached.
On the Journey
Thoughts from the Minister
As I write, we are fresh off First Unitarian's Homecoming Weekend. It was fabulous!! The food, the entertainment, and the people came together in the most delightful way. I laughed. I cried. I met new people and learned more about people I thought I knew. We have an incredibly talented, funny, smart, and generous congregation. From the logistics and energy that went into the major events, to the care and concern that took care of so many little, and not so little, things behind the scenes, I am overwhelmingly grateful for the love and commitment that shone through so abundantly all weekend.
As we step off on the next hundred years, I am humbled and inspired to imagine what lies ahead as we live fully into the legacy we are blessed to continue.
Rev. Kathy's Schedule: I am most often in the office during the day on Monday, Tuesday, and Friday. I frequently have appointments scheduled either in the office or off-campus, so it is an excellent idea to call or email before making a special trip to see me. With advanced notice, I am happy to schedule appointments that fit your schedule, for example in the early evening.
Wednesday is my writing day. Thursday is my day off. On Thursdays, I respond only to emergencies.
2012 New Member Workshop
Are you interested in becoming a member of 1U? If so, we encourage you to attend worship services for a while and come to a Newcomer Orientation. We also invite you to attend any program or activity that interests you.
When you feel ready to deepen your commitment to Unitarian Universalism and the 1U church community, we invite you to register for a two-session Journey to Membership Workshop. In the workshop Rev. Kathy will tell participants about the history, philosophy, and practices of Unitarian Universalism, and church leaders will share information about our congregation.
Participants who attend the workshop will be invited to a New Member Potluck at which they'll meet church leaders and "seasoned members" who will serve as new member sponsors.
All those who complete a New Member Workshop and commit to join the church will be recognized in a New Member Ceremony during a Sunday worship service.
The dates of the next Journey to Membership workshop are:
Friday, March 30 (7:00 - 9:00pm in the Hiett Library) & Saturday, March 31 (9:00am - noon in the Hiett Library).
The New Member Potluck for this class will be Friday, April 20 (7:00 - 9:00pm in Gore Hall).
New Member Sunday will be April 22.
March Newcomer Orientation
Are you a newcomer to our church? Would you like to meet our minister, Rev. Kathy Schmitz, learn more about Unitarian Universalism, and get answers to any questions you may have? If so, the Membership Committee invites you to attend the Newcomer Orientation on Sunday, March 18, at 10:15am in the Hiett Library.
Let 1U's Caring Circle recognize your joys and concerns, whether they are announced in church or not. If you-or a member friend-need support in rough times or wish to share celebrations in good times, let Caring Circle know. This month's Caring Circle contact is Joyce Vierling.
District Annual Assembly
March 23 - 25, 2012; Hosted by the UU Church of Jacksonville
Our theme this year, Crossing Boundaries, challenges us to ask:
This District Assembly offers practical learning and a hands-on experience to guide our reflections. Come ready to reach deeper on issues multi-culturalism, ethnicity, racial justice, immigration, and human rights.
For more information, with links to registration, click here.
General Assembly 2012, A Meeting of Congregations
June 20 - 24, 2012; Phoenix, Arizona
This is a historic moment. Be part of the story.
Unitarian Universalists from across the country and around the world will gather for General Assembly 2012. It will be a gathering with multiple ways of engaging in justice work for people of all ages. Joining with the people of Arizona, we will worship, witness, learn, and work together. We will leave General Assembly grounded in our faith, energized for justice, and with resources to bring this work home to our congregations.
Registration and housing open March 1. Early registration with a lower fee ends April 30. For more information, go to www.uua.org/ga
Volunteer Opportunities for General Assembly
The GA Volunteer Committee funds full-time GA registrations in exchange for 24 hours of volunteer work at GA (16 hours for those eligible for reduced registration rates). Applicants from the host District are especially sought. Applications will be available at: http://www.uua.org/ga/registration/financialaid/14930.shtml on March 1 and must be submitted by March 31.
We seek volunteer applicants who:
The Alliance meets Tuesdays from 10:00am to 1:00pm in Gore Hall (unless otherwise noted). Among other activities, we prepare donated items for sale in our Continuing Bazaar. Bring along a bag lunch; iced tea is provided. All are welcome!
The Alliance's annual meeting will be in April. We will elect new officers and vote on a budget. The nominating committee submitted these names.
President: Jean Cawelti
1st Vice-President: Charlotte Fleming
2nd Vice-President: Dayle Steakley
Recording Secretary: Jane Austin
Corresponding Secretary: Pat Spoone
Treasurer: Margaret Sanders
Programs for March
March 6 Board Meeting and work on the Continuing Bazaar.
March 13 Lunch at the home of Ellen Hone and Sharon Durant at 11:30am. We will be carpooling from Gore Hall at 11:00am. Fern Lefkowitz will speak to us about providing weekend food for disadvantaged elementary school children. We will work on the Continuing Bazaar prior to leaving for lunch.
March 20 We will have a speaker from the HSN Hope Team that serves Homeless Veterans. We will also work on the Continuing Bazaar.
March 27 A speaker from the New Image Youth Center will tell us about their activities. We will also work on the Continuing Bazaar.
Living the 7th: Green Team in March
We're off to picket this month and "info tent" at Earth Day Festival next month! Let us know if you want to help!
March 5: VegCF "First Mondays" Vegan Potluck. 7:00 - 9:00pm in Gore Hall.
For those curious about the veg lifestyle... The Green Team is pleased to host this Vegetarians of Central Florida gathering on our campus. Join us with a covered vegan dish and prepare to sample the yummies!
March 10: CIW Picket to Support Farmworkers. Have you gotten a supermarket letter from http://www.ciw-online.org to ask your manager to change? Will you come help picket Publix in Lakeland? See Dan Homblette to sign up!
March 17: Earth Cinema Nite. 7:00pm in the Hiett Library. Our 3rd Saturday drop-in movie class is open and friendly! This month:
Inspired by a curiosity about our country's careless habit of sending food straight to landfills, the multi-award-winning documentary DIVE! follows filmmaker Jeremy Seifert and friends as they dumpster dive in the back alleys and gated garbage receptacles of Los Angeles' supermarkets. In the process, they salvage thousands of dollars worth of good, edible food - resulting in an inspiring documentary that is equal parts entertainment, guerilla journalism, and call to action.
Join the Immigration Team welcoming young adults from Hope CommUnity Center in Apopka. These youth have been in our country for years, yet the challenges they face are many. Hear their personal stories to become better acquainted with their lives. Ask questions, and share their frustrations. Join us Tuesday evening, March 13, at 7:00 in Gore Hall.
Many heartfelt thanks and lots of hugs and kisses to all those who helped make our Centennial Homecoming Weekend and our Choral Fest so memorable!! Turning 100 never felt so good!
UUA Trustee Tidbits
Joan Lund, March 2012
March is the month when many of us will begin planning for our attendance at Justice GA 2012, Phoenix, AZ. Although it will be a "hot" time GA promises to be one of our most important events in our 50+ history. Each month leading up to GA I am committed to writing about something related to this historic June gathering. There are several groups working with the Administration and the General Assembly Planning Committee (GAPC), the primary umbrella group being the Arizona Immigration Ministry (AZIM). AZIM is a ministry of the UU Congregation of Phoenix, which fosters UU partnerships with organizations representing those most affected by current immigration and enforcement policies with support from our UUA. To continue my goal of writing about GA 2012 this column will be devoted to continuing information about GA partnership groups.
The Arizona Advocacy Network (AZAN) works to secure electoral justice, political rights and full civic participation, especially for underrepresented and marginalized constituencies, to achieve government for the people, not corporations. The scope of their work includes, but is not limited to: defending, strengthening, and expanding Arizona's Clean Elections system; advocating for full disclosure of contributions by corporations; promoting anti-corruption and conflict of interest laws including gift bans; guarding voting rights, voter registration, and election integrity; and protecting and improving Arizona's ballot initiative processes.
The Arizona Worker Rights Center/Centro de Derechos Laborales de Arizona (AIAW) is Arizona's only worker rights center. The Center is worker run and led to better challenge workplace injustice in collaboration with faith and labor communities, ethical business owners, and government agencies. It is a place where the state's working people are able to take charge of solving their own workplace issues. Though the Center continues to assist individual workers file claims with courts and government agencies, it is also engaging in activities with building community, developing and educating leaders and community members, and proactively addressing the socio-political climate.
Humane Borders is motivated by faith and offers humanitarian assistance to those in need through the deployment of emergency water stations on routes known to be used by migrants journeying through the desert. Their mission is to take death out of the immigration equation by provision of water tanks on both public and private lands, in all cases with permission in writing from the landowners.
I am looking forward to being with many, many Florida UUs in June for our work and witnessing at Justice GA 2012. As always you are welcome and encouraged to contact me.
Board of Trustees
President, Michelle Bergandi
President Elect, Jean Siegfried
Vice President, Chris Baranyi
Secretary, Carolina Lofgren
Treasurer, John Hartgering
Rev. Kathy Schmitz
Director of Religious Education:
Director of Music:
Custodian: Victor Cruz
Editor: Amy Fairweather
Production Volunteer: Carolina Lofgren
Reporters: Church Members
News Deadline for the April Issue:
March 15, 2012, 1:00pm
First Unitarian Church of Orlando
A Unitarian Universalist Congregation
1901 E. Robinson St. Orlando, FL 32803