The Drummer – Weekly Beats – February 16, 2018
February 16, 2018
· This Sunday’s worship topic is “A Workshop in Democracy”
Rev Dr. Tom Chulak
In these times it is important that we proclaim as Unitarian Universalists who we are and where we stand. This service will explore our roots in democracy and how we are called to respond. (Check out the Common Read under Religious Education for Adults below).
· 2017-2018 Guest at Your Table is Concluding. Please bring what you’ve collected for Guest at Your Table this Sunday.
The Guest at Your Table program, supporting the work of the UU Service Committee, that began as part of worship on 26 November, is coming to a close for this year.
Please determine what you have collected and turn into a check.
Make the check out to UUCGB and put GAYT in the memo line and place in the offering plate on Sunday.
More information about Guest at Your Table and the UUSC can be found at: https://www.uusc.org/welcome-to-guest-at-your-table/
· Worship Weavers seeking speakers for March 11th service on the power of music
We are seeking speakers who would like to reflect on how music has positively affected their lives, and has connected to our UU faith. Speakers could discuss a particular song that has been meaningful, a musical experience like a concert, the act of making of performing music, etc.
Reflections should be 3-5 minutes in length, and should be submitted to the worship weavers at least a week in advance of the service. We are always available to help you with your reflection!
If you would like to participate in this service, please contact Sarah Miller.
· 30 Days of Love concluded this week!
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. Find out more at: https://sidewithlove.org/thirty-days-of-love-2018/
Week One: Growing the Ecosystem [15-21 January]
Week Two: Good soil, good seeds Generative Creation [22 -28 January]
Week Three: Enduring the drought times [29 January- 4 February]
Week Four: A renewing harvest, Composting & Watering [5-11 February]
Week Five: Lessons for the next season [12-14 February]
What are we learning from what we are practicing? How do we ask for the feedback we need? How do we share it? How can we practice our values now, among so much that is unideal? We honor our ancestor Donald Thompson and share You Deserve to Heal and Grow by Katie Blanchard and recommend you check out the Tonic Podcast – Healing Advice for What Ails You.
Read our message on Lessons for the next season at
· 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 story and discussion about “The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large”.
What RE for Children looks like on Sunday morning–We are continuing RE in the “second hour” through February.
The whole congregation worships together.
After a brief refreshment break after the service, children and teachers will gather for religious education, usually in the Children’s Chapel.
We are using a variety of curricular resources in our one room RE schoolhouse.
So far, the Faith Formation Team is Karen Pirhala, Laura Baker and Molly Nolan. We need one more person to fill out the team.
For safe congregations purposes we must have two adults in class each Sunday.
Interested? Please contact Karen or Molly at firstname.lastname@example.org
· Religious Exploration for Adults
Celebrate the anniversary of Religious Tolerance with Torda 450.
2018 is the 450th anniversary of the Edict of Torda, a radical departure from the enforced state religion of European countries in 1568.
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. The archived video can be found at https://www.uua.org/international/torda450/theological-reflection.
After viewing the video there are reflection questions to engage individually or as part of a small group. One person has indicated and interest. If you are interested in being part of a small group discussion around Torda 450, contact Molly in the church office.
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 (https://www.uuworld.org/articles/450-edict-torda-landmark).
The discussion prompts for the 14 February webinar (last one aired) will be available 1 March.
· UUA Common Read
Each year the UUA chooses a book, this year they chose two, for Unitarian Universalists to read and discuss. The UUA provides discussion guides for use in 1-3 sessions, whatever works for each congregation. The two books for this year are:
Centering: Navigating Race, Authenticity, and Power in Ministry, edited by Mitra Rahnema (Skinner House, 2017), centers the stories, analyses, and insights of a number of Unitarian Universalist religious professionals of color as they explore how racial identity is made both visible and invisible in Unitarian Universalist communities.
Daring Democracy: Igniting Power, Meaning, and Connection for the America We Want, by Frances Moore Lappé and Adam Eichen, (Beacon Press, 2017) lifts up the importance of democracy itself. It examines the anti-democracy movement that has led to the Trump presidency, then offers a vision and call to action to save our democracy and to take our civic life to a place it has never been.
On the heels of the worship this Sunday and given the state of affairs in the US and our 5th principle, maybe engaging Daring Democracy would be a good idea. If you are interested please email or call Molly in the church office.
· Are you on Facebook?
If you are on Facebook, please make a point of visiting The Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Bridgeport Facebook page on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday to “Like” and “Share” our Religious Education and Worship posts.
· Draft Mission of UUCGB
On Sunday, 14 January, we had our second congregational conversation regarding our mission statement. A follow up discussion will be scheduled soon.
Below is the one that we came up with by the end of the session. This is a working statement and not yet our “final” decision. Please send any comments or suggestions to email@example.com
“Love is the spirit of this church. We welcome everyone into our beloved community.
We are here to support each other in spiritual growth so we can go out and make the world a kinder place.”
· UUCGB Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
The book for February will be Born a Crime by Trevor Noah. The next meeting is Saturday 24 February at 10 AM. 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.
· From the Humanist Association of Connecticut
Monthly meetings are held at 7 pm on the 3rd Monday of the month at the Unitarian Society of New Haven.
Monday 19 February program, “Darwin Day is YUGE! Believe me!”
March’s meeting will take up “The Pro-Truth Pledge”
· May 3rd: Save the Date And Don’t Miss The Bus!
Yes, Priscilla Queen of the Desert is coming this Spring to the Downtown Cabaret Theatre in Bridgeport. This musical adventure of three drag queens on a road trip across the Australian desert, that began as a movie and became a big stage musical has played for many years all over the world and has kept its audiences laughing. One performance at Downtown Cabaret, on Thursday, May 3rd, is a benefit for the Council of Churches of Greater Bridgeport of which UUCGB is a member. UUCGB is a very low-budget support of the CofC, so your attendance at the May 3rd “Priscilla” performance will greatly aid the many wonderful programs and projects currently underway in Bridgeport sponsored by the Council. Talk among your friends, church and otherwise, and put together a table or two. We can bring a shared supper and have a great evening. More information to follow, but mark your calendar now!
· Spanish Speaking Help Needed
Bridgeport Public Schools have had a large, temporary influx of non-English speaking children to the school system due to the devastating conditions in Puerto Rico. As many may be aware, Bridgeport Schools have had significant budget cuts over the past few years and can barely accommodate their own students let alone additional ones with special needs. ESL (English as a Second Language) resources have also been cut back so these non-English speaking children are basically left to fend for themselves. In particular, there is one 3rd grade teacher at Cesar Batalla School who has twelve of these kids in her classroom with NO assistance. She’s looking for Spanish speaking volunteers for an hour or two a week to help these students with very basic language skills to see them through the school year. Can anyone help? Please contact Karen Flowitt (Art Oefinger’s wife) at 203-925-9439.
· UU Meriden becomes a Sanctuary Congregation – help still needed
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 President@uucgb.org 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.
· This Week in UU History
2/17/1698 – The English House of Commons petitioned the king to suppress all literature disputing the Trinity and to punish the authors. The Blasphemy Act had made Unitarianism a crime punishable by the denial of civil rights.
2/19/1606 – John Licinius, a Polish Socinian scholar, published the New Testament in Polish.
2/21/1816 – Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar was born in Concord, Massachusetts, the oldest son of Samuel Hoar. He entered Harvard College in 1831 at the age of 15. In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, he ran a girl’s school and helped build the Unitarian church there. He received his LLB from Harvard Law School in 1839 and went on to serve as justice of the Court of Common Pleas in Massachusetts and justice of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts. A pillar of First Parish in Concord (Unitarian), Hoar served on the Board of Trustees of the American Unitarian Association. He also served as attorney general under Ulysses Grant. He was especially fond of Ralph Waldo Emerson, less fond of Henry David Thoreau. Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar died on January 31, 1895.
UUCGB Building Schedule for this week:
Sunday 2/18, 10:00 am worship “A Workshop in Democracy” with Worship Leader Rev. Dr. Tom Chulak and Worship Weaver Al Post
Tuesday 2/20 7:00 pm Taize Service
Wednesday 2/21, 7:00 pm Choir Practice
Sunday 2/25, 10:00 am worship “No Shoes, No Feet” with Worship Leaders Sarah Miller, Connie Cole-Ingber & Peter Morse
2/25 Sunday Service with Sarah Miller, Connie Cole-Ingber & Peter Morse “No Shoes, No Feet”
3/4 Sunday Service with Anita Sanders, “Somebody”
February Office Hours
19-25 February office hours are uncertain. I will be here, everything that needs to be done will be done. However, at this time, I cannot say with certainty when. In all likelihood I will be here will be Friday 10 am – 1 pm. I will be working remotely on the days I am not able to be present in the office. Please send items for the Order of Service and the Drummer to me firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible, Wednesday 9 AM at the latest. Please send items to email@example.com and cc me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Next week will be a mix of remote work and in office. Schedule to be determined. Thanks.
Molly Nolan, Office Administrator
Please send any items you would like listed in next week’s Weekly Drummer Beats to email@example.com 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