The Drummer – Weekly Beats – January 12, 2018

The Drummer
Weekly Beats
January 12, 2018


 ·         Congregational discussion on the Mission of UUCGB

This Sunday, January 14 we will be continuing our talks about mission after the service.
Taking what you all said in the first meeting and some work the Board did on its retreat this year, we have a draft mission to consider, which is below. This is a place to start the next round of discussion about what our mission is.
 “We welcome everyone into our beloved community. We are here to help each other heal and grow both spiritually and personally so that we may go out and make the world a better place.”



·         Side With Love

The campaign formerly known as Standing on the Side of Love (visible in yellow T shirts in pictures of social justice demonstrations and actions) has a new name.  “Since its inception, Standing on the Side of Love (SSL) received feedback from disability rights activists within Unitarian Universalism about the exclusionary and ableist language of ‘standing’…Pushed forward by a Responsive Resolution at GA 2017, we committed to changing the name because of its history of injury and exclusion and to honor and respond to feedback by making the shift.”  To read the full announcement and watch a video about the name change go to:



·         30 Days of Love begins this Sunday!
Each year between Martin Luther King Day and Valentine’s Day UUs focus intentionally on the transforming power of love.  We seek to understand the many ways love can heal our world in ways large and small, global to personal.  From the Side With Love page on 30 Days of Love, “As we turn to 30 Days of Love 2018, we’ll be sharing weekly messages on: vision, creation, endurance, spiritual sustenance, and praxis. With each message, we’ll share accompanying resources.”  For more information go to:  To see the family activities calendar for 30 Days of Love click on the link ¾ way down the 30 Days page.



·         Religious Education for Children

After the service, and a short refreshment break, children and RE teachers will head to the Children’s Chapel for a discussion of Martin Luther King, Black Lives of UU, the 450th anniversary of the Edict of Torda, and 30 Days of Love.   There’s a lot to talk about; this is the beginning of a longer larger conversation about being UU.

Going Forward – New Time The original plan was for Religious Education for Children or Faith Formation to be “experilearning” from 22 Octoberthrough the end of 2017 with RE for children in the second hour.  There have been a few bumps in the road and we have not been able to give this model a true test run.  We are extending our experiment, with what we’ve learned so far, through the end of February.  We will continue to worship all together at 10 AM each Sunday, after a brief refreshment break, children and teachers will gather for religious education in the “Second Hour”.  So far, the Faith Formation Team is Karen Pirhala, Laura Baker and Molly Nolan.  The team would benefit with one more core member and a roster of volunteers willing to assist with class.  Ideally, two adults are with the children at all times.  Could that person be you?  Please contact Karen or Molly at


·         Religious Exploration for Adults

2018 is the 450th anniversary of the Edict of Torda, a radical departure from the enforced state religion of European countries in 1568.

The ideas and values that are the foundation of our faith tradition have existed in unbroken line.  The world’s recognition of our values and beliefs has not charted an unbroken course.    That is why the 450th anniversary of the Edict of Torda is such a big deal for us. 

Join a Year-Long Theological Dialogue!

Connect as part of a pilgrimage, by online video conference, with a small group, or individually.  Each month you’ll find a specific opportunity for engagement.  Begin the year of reflection with study and exploration of the history, context, and current relevance of the Anniversary of the Edict of Torda.  Join us for a live webinar on January 17, 2018 at 8 p.m. US-Eastern or watch it later.  Then engage with this reflection module individually or with a small group.  Would you like to gather as a group at a time after the webinar to discuss?  Please be in touch with Molly in the church office or call the church office 203-378-1020.  We can hold discussions during the day, evening or weekend.  If you can indicate a couple good days/times when you email or call, we can determine our meeting time that much more quickly.

For more information about the 450th anniversary of the Edict of Torda, check out an article in the winter edition of the UU World by Eric Cherry (  There is a link to pages on the UUA web site ( that outlines the year-long theological exploration we can take part in. 


Download PDF here.


·         Happy New Year!  Keeping our calendar
If you or your team have a regular meeting or activity schedule, a one off meeting, or an event, please send to as soon as you know the date.  We can put the meeting/event on the paper calendar and get into the Drummer and Order of Service so that the congregation knows what is going with enough lead time to join in.  Thanks!



·         UUCGB will collect Guest at Your Table collection boxes and envelopes at the end of 30 Days of Love
It is not too late to join in!!  The Guest at Your Table program kickoff was part of worship on 26 November.  Even if you were unable to attend the service, you can pick up your collection box or envelope and your copy of the Stories of Hope on the table in the back of the Sanctuary.  Guest at Your Table is an invitation to engage in understanding and support of the work of the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC).  More information about Guest at Your Table and the UUSC can be found at:



·         UUCGB Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson is the book for January.  The January meeting will be Saturday, January 27th at 10am.

The book for February will be Born a Crime by Trevor Noah.  

We also plan to read Lab Girl as one of our books this year and are open to other suggestions so please feel free to share via email any books that you have read and want to discuss or books that you keep meaning to read. We also try to choose at least one classic every year so keep that in mind.
Thanks and see y’all in January.



·         UU Meriden becomes a Sanctuary Congregation Update
There has been some progress in the legal system on getting permanent status for Sujitno and Dahlia.  While this is the beginning of a long process, there is some movement towards resolution!

The Unitarian Universalist Church of Meriden and the congregation’s recently formed Chalice Sanctuary Team made arrangements to provide sanctuary to Sujitno and Dahlia Sajuti.  Sujitno came to the US as a Fullbright Scholar and then returned to work on a PhD through UConn.  He overstayed his student visa and to date has not been able to attain documented status.
UUCGB has offered help to UUCM. We have been asked to get a group together who are able to individually stay overnight at UUCM a few times as needed. Please email if you are interested. 


·         Tuesday Evening Taize Prayer Service
Our contemplative Service of Evening Prayer is a service consisting of repetitive singing of chants, readings, prayer and periods of silence, in order to reach a contemplative state. The Taizé Community, an ecumenical monastic order in France, founded in 1940 to promote peace and justice through prayer and meditation. Our service mirrors Taizé-style attention to silence, holy words, prayer, and singing, but has also evolved to include other meditative traditions, as well.

Service begins at 7 pm, each Tuesday, and runs approximately 30 minutes.


·         Mercy Learning Center Seeking Volunteers!
The Center is seeking volunteers to teach English Language Learners as well as basic adult reading and math in its one-on-one or small group tutoring.  No Experience necessary.  Training and materials provided.  Next training date, Friday 26 January, 9 AM-3PM (lunch provided).  Please contact Lynn Gabriel or Erica Hoffman, 23-334-6699 or or



·         USNH Social Cinema
Saturday, 20 January at the Unitarian Society of New Haven, 700 Hartford Turnpike, Hamden.  Optional potluck dinner begins at 6:15 pm, documentary film “I Am Shakespeare:  The Henry Green”, the story of 19 year old Henry Green – living a dual life as a brilliant young actor and inner-city gang member in New Haven.  Q&A with Filmmaker Stephen Dest after the screening.  Contact Jesse Greist for more information.



·         This Week in UU History
1/13/1568 – Following the Diet of Torda on 6 January, at which Unitarian minister Francis David won debates with Calvinist Bishop Peter Melius,Prince John Sigismund converted to Unitarianism on this day and then issued the Edict of Torda, which declared toleration for other religions.  

1/4/1571 – The Diet of Maros Vasarhely in Transylvania legally recognized the Unitarian religion as equal to three other recognized religions—Catholicism, Lutheranism, and Calvinism.  This protection, subsequently reaffirmed by Prince John Sigismund, saved the religion from the extinction it suffered in Poland. 

1/15/1893 – Frances Anne Kemble, an English actress turned American abolitionist, died at age 83.  She was heavily influenced by Unitarians William Ellery Channing and Lydia Marie Child.   



UUCGB Building Schedule for this week:   

Sunday 1/14, 10:00 am worship “Systemic isms Hurt All” with Worship Leader Anita Sanders  

Sunday 1/14, 11:30 am Congregational Discussion on the Mission of UUCGB

Tuesday 1/16 7:00 pm Taize Service

Wednesday 1/17, 7:00 pm Choir Practice

Sunday 1/21, 10:00 am worship “If We Only Have Love” with Worship Leader Peter Morse

Sunday 1/21, 11:30 am Worship Weavers

Upcoming Services:

1/21 Sunday Service “If We Only Have Love” with Worship Leader Peter Morse 

1/28 Sunday Service “A Sense of Place” with Worship Leader Al Post

January Office Hours

Next week 15-21  January, I will be in the office Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 10 am – 1 pm.  Please get items for the Order of Service and the Drummer into the office as soon as possible, Wednesday 9 AM at the latest.  Thanks.


Molly Nolan, Office Administrator


Please send any items you would like listed in next week’s Weekly Drummer Beats to by Wednesday at 9 am!  The weekly email is sent every Thursday evening!


Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Bridgeport
275 Huntington Road
Stratford, CT 06614