Articles, Reflections, & Announcements
Office Volunteers Needed
Have you volunteered in the UUCT office in the past and miss it? Have you always dreamed of volunteering in the office? Now is your chance to lend your talents and become an office volunteer!
For more information email email@example.com or call the office at (850) 385-51115.
Collards & Cornbread Potluck & Cook Off – RESCHEDULED
The Collards & Cornbread event bridges racial and community divides to find solutions for food insecurity, educate about local and organic gardening, and celebrate tasty and healthy food.
Bring a dish to share for the potluck lunch or register for the Collards & Cornbread Cook Off here by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The requested $25 donation to enter will support the Frenchtown iGrow garden.
Join FAMU/FSU Students, Farmers, Politicians, Faith Leaders, Local Officials, Health and Nutritionists, and Sustainability Groups for a potluck lunch, demos, kids gardening, and planning meeting in the beautiful iGrow garden. There will also be an Evergreen Tree Collard Demo & Plant Sale!
Share the Plate…Fill a Plate
UUCT, as one of the six congregations supporting Manna on Meridian, helps fill many plates for people/families/children who may be unsure where their next meal is coming from.
The numbers make the need for continued donations clear. Manna was serving approximately 140 families a month at the beginning of the pandemic. Over the past year and a half, the number of families served is averaging 200 a month with a high summer of 225 families in one month.
Thanks to continued generous financial and product contributions from congregation members, Manna is currently able to increase the types and numbers of groceries in the general staples bag, in the produce bag and on the choice tables. Manna wants to be able to sustain these additional groceries provided.
Donor’s financial contributions are integral to providing food to Manna recipients November has a “share the plate” for Manna. Please continue to give generously. Thank you. For all you do on so many fronts, thank you.
This Sunday’s Share the Plate partner is Manna on Meridian.
To Dare Everything – An 8th Principle Reflection Informed by James Baldwin
By Robin Gray
In “The Fire Next Time” James Baldwin warned his nephew:
“You were born where you were born and faced the future that you faced because you were black and for no other reason.”
Today’s headlines reverberate with that observation. Because you are Black and for no other reason…you will be incarcerated in greater numbers…you will be killed by the police and civilians claiming to stand their ground…you can be limited to lesser jobs and rewards.
We should “affirm and promote” our seven principles. Yet, for me, affirmation is not enough. How can we affirm “inherent worth and dignity” when racism steals dignity from so many? How can we simply affirm the “the democratic process” while racism works to erode voting rights? How can we only affirm the “interdependent web of all existence” while waste seeps into Black and Indigenous communities?
The 8th Principle calls us to actions that “dismantle racism and other oppressions.” In 1962, James Baldwin identified what holds us back:
“To act is to be committed, and to be committed is to be in danger. In this case, the danger, in the minds of most white Americans, is the loss of their identity.”
White superiority and white privilege are woven into our lives, our congregations, and our country. Acknowledging their presence is one step; affirming our Seven Principles another step; and acting to “dismantle racism and other oppressions” a vital third step in the process of fully living our values.
If you have questions about the 8th Principle, email: email@example.com
An Alternative View: Why I Think We Do NOT Need an 8th Principle
Aren’t our UU Seven Principles enough? For me the answer is yes.
I like their “Universal” nature. Today I can say I try to live up to the UU principles every day. The definition of principle is: a comprehensive and fundamental law, doctrine or assumption. The proposed 8th principle is more of an action program than a principle. I do not see myself “dismantling racism…in institutions” as something I can promise to live by in the final chapter of my life.
I think its more important to live by the principle “to affirm the inherent worth and dignity of every person,” and to tend to the person, right in front of me, without regard to skin color or orientation.
I hope that UUCT can be for others what it is for me…a liberal oasis in a desert of Fox news fans. I think that community and spiritual nurturing are the foundation to social justice activism. The current principles provide for that beloved community and spiritual growth. Furthermore, I reject the notion that somehow, I am responsible for the wrongs done by others, whether it be the wrongs of slavery, or the wrongs done by UUA to minority groups in the past.
In coming weeks, UUCT will be further discussing these issues, and I hope to become more enlightened in a constructive way that I can incorporate into my life.
This is an alternative point of view by a congregant debating the adoption of the 8th Principle.
UUA, UUMFE and U re: COP26 seeking Climate Commitments Now
By Steve Urse
Doris Martin, a board member for UU Ministry for Earth, one of the UUA delegates to COP26, and a member of All Souls Church Unitarian in Washington, DC writes:
The importance of City and State Action has just INTENSIFIED due to reduced climate policy in the federal Build Back Better Act. Someone must carry the load if the federal government is not.
That means You, all friends and organizations pulling together to Strengthen and Accelerate your Local Climate Commitments (SLCC) are even more important.
SLCC meets each month on the 1st Wednesday to discuss local climate actions. This week’s focused on COP 26 with Bill McPherson facilitating. Previously, Bill was a science attaché in the US Mission to the UN in Geneva, representing the US government to the IPCC and World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
To Follow UUs at COP 26 and view some prior event recordings that led up to COP 26 visit this UU Ministry for Earth Web Page.
A quick critical action you can take is to let your representatives know that the US should fully fund our Fair Share of the Green Climate Fund. UUSJ / UUSC / UUMFE / UU@UNO Action Alert HERE with lots of supporting information.
There are many ways to follow COP 26 with more in depth tracking. My GOTO source for US and Global Climate & Policy is the World Resources Institute – Here is their summary of COP 26 Events.
Volunteer Opportunity – Canvass Committee Chair
UUCT is looking for one or two volunteers to coordinate the Canvass effort that will begin in early 2022. The annual Canvass is an important part of our budgeting and planning process. The Canvass chair (or co-chairs) works closely with staff and volunteers to coordinate the communication effort, arrange for testimonials and other service content, and report to the executive board and congregation as to the status of the Canvass throughout the spring.
If you are interested in serving in this critical role, please get in touch as soon as possible with Dan D’Arcangelis, VP-Finance at firstname.lastname@example.org or 269-598-9017.