June 4, 2020
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This Weekend at First Unitarian Church
Worship Celebration News 

Sunday, June 7, 2020  Live-streamed at 10:30 am @ 

Preaching the Gospel of Peace, Justice, Freedom, and Love

In light of the murder of George Floyd, how do we preach the gospel of peace, justice, freedom, and love?

Homily by Rev. Connie Grant, music by Kris Rust. 

Parking Policy
Pastoral Care & Caring Community
Covenant Groups 
Social Action Council
Adult Self Study 
Music & the Arts
Young Adult & Campus Ministry
Church Happenings
Space Reservations & Rentals
Contact Us
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Congregational Meeting Results and Annual Report Available Online
Annual meeting documents, including the Annual Report detailing this year’s programs and activities, are posted on the 
Congregational Meetings page on the church website.
Read reflections on the events of the past church year from the outgoing
 Board of Trustees President Martin Schmidt, and from our interim minister Rev. Connie Grant. 

General Assembly June 24-28 - Delegates Sought!
General Assembly (GA) is the annual meeting of our Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA). Participants worship, witness, learn, connect, and make policy for the Association through the democratic process.  Anyone may attend.  To represent the congregation as a voting delegate at the GA business meetings requires approval by the church’s Board of Trustees.  If you are interested in serving as one of our five delegates, please email Lynne Porterfield at by June 10 with your full name, email address and phone number, length of membership in the congregation, and a few words about why you wish to be a delegate.  The Board will make a decision about delegates at the June 17 meeting.
The UUA Board of Trustees has passed a resolution to make the 2020 General Assembly a 100% virtual event.  The cost of virtual GA Registration is $150.
This year’s theme is Rooted, Inspired & Ready!  Sessions will include the bases of our theological roots, ideas about how to transform our faith, and inspiration for taking action in the world.  A variety of workshops and special events will provide registrants with tools to live into our mission and continue the work of our faith—both within UU congregations and in the greater world.  More information about workshops and other special events is here:
All GA registrants have access to the GA Virtual Participation Portal, which combines multiple modes of participant engagement that include chat, Q&A, and polling. Registrants are able to watch and ask questions in live sessions including workshops and business sessions. 
Delegates are also able to propose amendments in the live business sessions, participate in debates, and vote in general sessions.  More information about the role of delegates is available here:
 Message from our Minister    

Black Lives Matter

Black lives matter. The sign on your building says so. Black lives matter. Do you believe those words? How are you living into those words?

Black lives matter, we say. Yet acts of anti-black racism happen all the time. Racist acts range from mundane "microaggressions" that may not have had racist intent yet have racist impact, to blatant acts of murder including the killing of George Floyd as a recent example. No racist act is to be tolerated.

What can we do to eradicate racism and create a world where black lives truly matter? The virus of racism is as virulent and frightening as the coronavirus that plagues us. If the idea of walking out the door is frightening, imagine the fear that black people feel every day.

There’s so much we can learn, and learn from each other in our separate experiences and our common ones just by talking with each other with openness and compassion.

“Doing something” won’t look the same for all of us. But there is something each of us can do, including learning opportunities. Some possibilities:

“Response + Recovery: First Friday - Encouraging Courageous Policy and Conversation” The role of policy and advocacy in addressing racism in our region. Friday, June 5 at 8:30 a.m. Partner and member conversations on pressing issues. Sponsored by the Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce, an affiliate of the Allegheny Conference on Community Development. Speakers will include: Austin Davis, Pennsylvania State Representative (PA-35); Dr. Angela Reynolds, CEO, YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh; Sabrina Saunders Mosby, President & CEO, Vibrant Pittsburgh; Katie Pope, Interim Vice-Chancellor of Diversity and Inclusion, University of Pittsburgh. Register here

“Unfinished Business: A Study of DuBois’ Reconstruction in America to Now” Four Wednesdays: June 10, June 17, July 1 and July 8. This political education series offered by Side With Love and Love Resists will explore the history of the reconstruction era (post-civil war), to give us a deeper understanding of the origin of today’s systemic racism in policing and mass incarceration as well as the Black-led movements resisting it. In this pivotal protest moment sparked by the law-enforcement-linked murders of George Floyd, Amaud Ahmery, Breonna Taylor, and Tony McDade - only the most recent Black lives to be lost to police violence - we’ll learn from the past to be ready for today, and to build towards the world we dream of. We’ll be using the 4-part documentary “Reconstruction: America After the Civil War” narrated by Henry Louis Gates Jr. as a starting point for reflection, discussion, spiritual grounding in UU values, and action. The political education group will begin each Wednesday at 5 pm PT/8 pm ET and you can join an hour earlier (4 pm PT/7 pm ET) to watch the film together, or you can watch on your own any time ahead of the discussion group. Register here for zoom call-in information and more details about the program.

Tuesday evening’s #WeCantBreathe UUA Virtual Prayer Vigil is available to watch and listen here:

And a new message from UUA President Susan Frederick-Gray is available here:

In faith and hope for wholeness and healing,


Submitted by Pat Ulrich on Flower Communion

Flower Photographs Available for Download
Flower photographs that were sent in by congregants for our May 31 Flower Celebration service (including those that were received after the deadline) are available at

Some ways to receive a periodic dose of spiritual sustenance:

Life is full of hard edges and complicated choices. Braver/Wiser gives you weekly message of courage and compassion for life as it is. Every Wednesday, an original written reflection by a contemporary religious leader, and brief prayer, grounded in Unitarian Universalism.   Subscribe at

A Common Meditation for All Souls
A daily meditation from All Souls Unitarian Church in New York City, intended “to help spark our moral imagination and set our moral compass as individuals.”  To sign up to receive a daily meditation via email, contact

The Daily Compass
“Inspiration for your spiritual expedition.” The Daily Compass offers words and images to inspire spiritual reflection and encourage the creation of a more loving, inclusive and just world. Produced by The Church of the Larger Fellowship, the Unitarian Universalist Congregation with no geographical boundary.  Subscribe at

Adult Religious Education

New Zoom Book Discussion Groups!

Two books exploring our connection as Unitarian Universalists with the causes and lessons of indigenous people in the U.S.

The UUA Common Read: An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States - 10 Sessions
Tuesday nights @ 7pm beginning 6/9;
 Please have read Chapter 1 for the first session!
We will reading through and discuss the book chapter by chapter, to keep the reading manageable, and to have a chance for meaningful delving and discussion.  We will explore intersections between our learning, and how we can respond as Unitarian Universalists.

Please email to register.  Class will be held if it has at least 6 participants.

Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants - 6 Sessions

Thursday nights @ 7pm, beginning 6/11; 
Please have read Section I: Planting Sweetgrass, for the first session!
We will explore the spiritual wisdom gifted to us by indigenous peoples, and ways to make spiritual connections with the earth that restore and nourish us.

Please email to register.  Class will be held if it has at least 6 participants.

Young Adults Religious Education 
Young Adults Small Group   
Weekly Meetings on Zoom
Please join us for our weekly meeting at 7:00pm on Wednesdays.

We are currently going through a program called Spirit In Practice, which explores spiritual practices for Unitarian Universalists.

  Click on the following link on Wednesday, when you are ready to join:
1st U YA Meeting
Zoom Link:


Children and Youth Religious Education 
Parents' Check-In on Thursdays, at 8:30 pm.  ZOOM LINK  Password is required; it will be sent out to the parent email list.  If you are not receiving these emails, you can request to join by emailing

Family Social Hour w/ Joys & Sorrows on Sundays, @ 10:00 a.m.  ZOOM LINK  Password is required; it will be sent out to the parent email list.  If you are not receiving these emails, you can request to join by emailing
During this period where we are more isolated, women congregation members are invited to connect with the Womenspirit Group.  Typically we meet the second Wednesday of the month at 6:30 at someone’s home for a potluck and discussion of choice by the host. We have recently begun to connect via Zoom. If you would like to be on the email list to receive invitations, contact coordinator, Pat Schuetz, at Note: For the June 10 6:30 gathering you can request the Zoom link from either Pat or host Karen Litzinger at

 Covenant group Opportunities  
Consider joining or creating a virtual covenant group.
If you are interested in joining or creating  a new covenant group, you can complete a 
Covenant Group interest form or contact Alice Bright

If your group would like to set up meetings using the church account please contact Rev. Connie Grant at

Church Sponsored Activities and Community Events

Helping Each Other
During these trying times members of the church may occasionally need a helping hand. The Pastoral Care Team asks you to identify ways you may be able to assist. We expect you would be called only a few times during the year. Please Contact a member of the team if you are able to help. 

You’ll be asked to indicate which of these you may be able to help with from time to time:

□ Transportation

□ Providing a meal for an individual or family

□ Shopping

□ Emotional support

In the event of a need in the congregation, you may be contacted to see whether you are available to help at that time. Your help will be appreciated!

Pastoral Care Team Contact Information:
Christine Beregi: Phone:
Jan Carlino: Phone: 412-727-0200
Julie Childers: Phone: 412-726-3590
Jim Cunningham: Phone: 412-256-0205 (Co-Chair)
Kathy Miller: Phone:
412-639-8012 (Co-Chair)
Bob Sullivan: Phone:
Rev. Connie Grant: Phone: 847-840-8542 (Church Office: 412-621-8008)

Face Masks 
Many members of our congregation have been sewing reusable and washable face masks to help their family, friends and neighbors do what they can to be safe. 
If you need a mask or two, please email Julie Childers of the Pastoral Care team at with your request, including your street address, so we can mail or deliver a mask to you.

 The 2020 Annual Report is available at and documents what has been happening around the state with the Justice Teams.  There is a section in the report on “PA UUtheVOTE” that provides an overview of how UUPLAN is supporting both non-partisan and partisan electoral work. Look for these activities to ramp up during the coming summer.
Need an answer to a question and don’t know who to ask?  Want to pass along some feedback and not sure who to contact?  Reach out to your Board Ombudsman Ebe Emmons.  Ebe will coordinate with staff, committees, and the board to get an answer or pass along feedback.  Ebe can be reached at
Copyright © 2020 First Unitarian Church, All rights reserved.

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First Unitarian Church · 605 Morewood Avenue · Pittsburgh, PA 15213 · USA

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