The Drummer – Weekly Beats – September 7, 2018

The Drummer
Weekly Beats
September 7, 2018


·        Homecoming Service in the Sanctuary  

 We will be celebrating Homecoming on several levels.  In addition to the actual service we are back in the Sanctuary!  We’ll be doing our traditional Earth and Water ceremonies for the Homecoming service (Sept. 9). So, gather up some dirt and some water from places that are important to you to bring in and commingle with the offerings of your fellow UUs.


POTLUCK LUNCHEON follows the service on Sunday.  Please bring a dish to share.


·        Summer Worship Feedback needed

What did you think of the summer series on Freedom?  What did you like?  Not like?  Change?  Retain?  What would you like to explore next summer?  Continue to use this format?  Would you like to participate in worship creation?  Please speak to one of the Worship Weavers or send email comments to Sarah Miller.


·        Harvest Festival 30 September

Yes, Virginia, and anyone else who has been wondering, THERE WILL BE A HARVEST FESTIVAL this year!  And just because we aren’t announcing a Sunday Service for September 30th, that does not mean you are off the hook and can sleep in.  


We need you, particularly on the 30th, from sunrise to almost sunset. As some of our older members must take to the shade a little earlier each year, there is much to do to make this annual UUCGG tradition in its 41st consecutive year run smoothly.  Please look closely at the volunteer opportunities described below and give us your all…wherever you can and for as long as you can. It can be a tiring day but also a very enjoyable day in the fellowship of coworkers and friends.  And don’t forget to meditate on sunny skies and cool, not humid, temperatures.  Our combined thoughts and energies can be mighty powerful!


41st annual Harvest Festival will be held on Sunday, September 30th. This is our biggest annual event, and a wonderful opportunity to introduce ourselves to the greater Stratford community. Once again, our Harvest Festival will feature dozens of local artists and crafters of all types. There will be live music throughout the day, and delicious food from local vendors.

As always, UUCGB will sponsor our bake sale, organized by Jeanie Schoenleber and Karen Pirhala, our book sale organized by Jennifer Winschel and Marty Rising, the attic treasures tag sale, organized by Sarah Miller and Barbara Hunyadi, and our famous cheesecake sale, with amazing cheesecakes baked from scratch by Debby Parsons!

We plan to feature our kids games area. A coordinator is needed to facilitate this aspect of our festival. If interested, or if you’d like more information, please contact Sarah at

Please use the link below to volunteer at our Harvest Festival. Thank you in advance, and we look forward to a fabulous day!

Sarah Miller and Virginia Smith     


Harvest Festival Volunteer Form


·        Book Group Resumes!

Friday, September 14th at 5:30p.m. To all you readers out there, please join the UUCGB Literary and Potato Peel Pie society as we kick off our reading for the year with a potluck at Deb Parsons’ home to discuss all the interesting books we have read over the summer and decide our reading calendar for this year…bring your favorite dish to share and ideas for books. Contact Ellen Hardy if you need more information or directions. Looking forward to a great year of reading!


·        Choir beginning for 2018-9

Wednesday, September 19th at 7p.m. – Choir begins – if you like to sing you are more than welcome to join our choir. We meet every Wednesday at 7pm to rehearse. We try to sing at least once a month at a service. If you have any questions please contact Ellen Hardy and Peter Morse.

Friday, September 21st at 6p.m. – do you like music? Do you like to play, sing or listen? Do you like sitting around and jamming with friends? Then please join us at UUCGB on Friday, Sept. 21st for our first MUSIC JAM…you do not have to be good – you just have to enjoy music – and if you don’t play or sing but just want to listen that’s fine too! There is no pressure here.  If you have an instrument, bring it! If you have a copy of Rise Up Singing bring that! Hope to see you there. Questions? Contact Ellen Hardy.


·        Call for materials for the UUCGB archives

General call for any pictures you may have of activities in and by UUCGB over the past few years.  Any Board or Committee minutes that have not already been sent into the office, no matter how dated.  And pictures, Pictures, PICTURES—Harvest Fest, holiday worship, Cookie Café, GA delegates, New England Regional delegates, pot luck dinners, UUCGB Thanksgiving or Seder, Maypole, picnics, clean-up days, New Member Sunday, Annual Tea& Luncheon… Please contact Marilyn.


·        Connecticut Hospice looking for volunteers

The Connecticut Hospice is recruiting transportation volunteers to drive homecare patients to and from doctor’s appointments or take families without cars to visit their loved ones at the inpatient hospice in Branford.  Please call Volunteer Services at 203-315-7510.


·        Mercy Learning Center Seeks Volunteers!

Mercy Learning Center provides basic literacy and life skills to low income women.  The Center is seeking volunteers to teach English Language Learners as well as basic adult reading and math.  No experience necessary.  Training and materials are provided.  New Tutor Trainings:   Friday 14 September or Friday 28 September 9 AM – 3 PM, lunch provided.  The post-training commitment is twice per week for two hours.     Call 203-334-6699 to register or for more information.


·         Snacks needed for coffee hour

We can still use shelf stable snacks to re-supply our back up provisions, which are substantially depleted.  Marissa has been baking something every week.  She could use another couple people to do the same.  Can you help us restock and/or bake something for coffee hour?


·         Religious Education for Children

No regular class this Sunday 2 September or next Sunday 9 September.  We will resume our discussion of Unitarian Universalist Principles and Sources on 16 September. 


 ·        Religious Education for Children and Youth OPPORTUNITY

In mid-September we hope to roll out a new way to offer RE at UUCGB.  We are contemplating moving to a Spirit Play (Montessori style) structure.  The children will all be together to do chalice lighting, check in and hear the story for the day.  Then we will break into two age groups to continue the lesson.  We’ll come together again to close and extinguish the chalice.  If you’ve had a chance to get to know the children of this congregation, you know they are bright, curious and engaging.  This is your opportunity to help UUCGB help our children become who they are meant to be.  We need teachers to carry out this new vision of RE.  We are staying with the second hour for RE and other meetings and discussions for the 2018-9 church year.    We will be offering training in early fall.  If you are interested in teaching or assisting, please contact Karen or Molly. 


·        Common Read 2018-19
The Common Read Selection Committee is pleased to announce the 2018-19 Common Read: Justice on Earth: People of Faith Working at the Intersections of Race, Class, and Environment, edited by Manish Mishra-Marzetti and Jennifer Nordstrom (Skinner House Books, 2018).

At a time when racial justice, environmental justice, and economic justice are seen as issues competing for time, attention, and resources, Justice on Earth explores the ways in which the three are intertwined. Those on the margins are invariably those most affected by climate disaster and environmental toxins. The book asks us to recognize that our faith calls us to long-haul work for justice for our human kin, for the Earth and for all life. It invites us to look at our current challenges through a variety of different perspectives, offers tools to equip us for sustained engagement, and proposes multiple pathways for follow-up action. Justice on Earth is available at in Spirit: UU Book and Gift Shop. A discussion guide for congregations, offering both a single session and a three-session format, will be available online October 1, 2018.


·        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.   We’ve been a little light in posting with the several things going on around here.  But the Social Media folks are back in action.  Help us share the love and grace of Unitarian Universalism.


·        Love Resists Blog

As the deeply racist and oppressive nature of the Trump administration continues to reveal itself and we see our country returning more and more to overt and often violent methods of disempowering people of color and other vulnerable communities, we can find the strength to remain steadfast in our resistance by reinvesting in solidarity.


Ever faithful on our commitment to building Beloved Community, we must keep our hearts, eyes and ears open to the guidance and needs if those most at risk.  Love Resists the racism that is tearing apart our shared community.  And we know we must be courageous in our resistance. 


To renew courage and sustain commitment, we’ve compiled stories, resources and actions on the Love Resists blog. Check them out.  We hope they can provide the support and encouragement so needed to stay the course in this work.


·          Small Group Ministry Workshop at Shoreline UU Society, Madison


Saturday, September 22, 2018, Workshop 9:30am-4:30pm


CT UU congregations  are invited to a Small Group Ministry workshop led by the Rev. Mellon Kennedy.

Workshop Purpose: Many Unitarian Universalist societies are trying Small Group Ministry (or Covenant Groups) as a way to strengthen their congregations. This workshop will provide inspiration and information for lay and professional leaders who are

·         beginning a Small Group Ministry Program or

·         who are in an existing program in need of revitalization and/or

·         who are seeking inspiration and ideas on how to expand and grow an existing program.


The following topics will be covered:

·         the power and purpose of Small Group Ministry

·         the essential components of a strong Small Group Ministry program

·         addressing common challenges in an SGM program

·         developing shared leadership within a small group

·         hands-on experience in two actual small groups


Workshop Leader: Rev. Dr. Mellen Kennedy is passionate about the power of intentional small groups to inspire, heal and transform us. She is co-founder of the Small Group Ministry Network, and has more than 35 years of experience as a leader, researcher, teacher and organizer of small groups.


Cost: All participants (SUUS members and non-members) are required to complete the registration form below by September 18th.   SUUS Non-Member Workshop Fee: $35/person. Morning coffee & tea, and lunch, included in registration fee. 

 If you have questions, contact Rev. Jeanne Lloyd at minister@ with SGM Workshop in the subject line.

September-22-Small-Group-Ministry-Program (1).pdf


·         From the Humanist Association of Connecticut

+Saturday 15 September 2:00 pm, Book Discussion: Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire by Kurt Anderson

+Monday 17 September 7:00 pm, Monthly Meeting, Main program TBD

+Sunday 23 September 3:30 pm, Board Meeting

+Monday 24 September 7:00 pm, Dinner Discussion at Wood-n-Tap, 2100 Dixwell Ave, Hamden, 203-248-9663  Topic TBD


For more information about the group and activities at: or or


·        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

from This Day in Unitarian Universalist History by Frank Schulman


9/7/1782 – Charles Chauncey published The Mystery Hid from Ages and Generations, or, The Salvation of All Men.  He was a Unitarian minister who adopted the Universalist position of universal salvation. He argued that the punishments of Hell are not eternal and that all people will be redeemed. 

9/8/1647 – Twelve Arguments Against the Deity of the Holy Spirit by John Biddle was burned in Westminster Square in London, England.  Biddle is considered the father of English Unitarianism. 

9/12/1797 – Samuel Joseph May was born in Boston. He was a popular Unitarian personality and a colleague of William Ellery Channing. A traveling preacher, May went as far south as Washington, D.C., where he saw firsthand the evils of slavery. He then accepted a remote parish in a Calvinist part of Connecticut, where he edited The Liberal Christian and espoused the causes of abstinence, peace, education, women’s rights, abolition, and the elimination of corporal punishment. Returning to Massachusetts and settling in South Scituate, May became a founding member of the Massachusetts Anti-slavery Society. Channing wrote about how a conversation with May persuaded him to fight slavery. In 1845, May accepted a call to Syracuse, New York, where a new church was erected in 1885 and dedicated as the May Memorial Church in his honor. Samuel Joseph May died on July 1, 1871. He should not be mistaken for the Samuel May born on April 11, 1810.


 UUCGB Building Schedule for this week:   

Sunday 9/9, 10:00 am worship,
                   Homecoming Water Communion with Worship Weavers

Tuesday 9/11, 7:00 pm Taize Service

Sunday 9/16, 10:00 am worship,
“My Last Mistake” with Peter Morse


Upcoming Services:

9/16 Sunday Service—My Last Mistake with Peter Morse

9/23 Sunday Service–


Office Hours

10 AM- 1 PM Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday.  Please send any items for the Drummer and/or Order of Service to the office  by 9 AM Wednesday. 


Thanks, Molly Nolan, Office Administrator


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



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