“Doubt isn't the opposite of faith; it is an element of faith,” according to Christian theologian Paul Tillich. Can we Unitarian Universalists “cherish [our] doubts” (as UU minister Robert T. Weston put it) without making an idol of them? In what do we place our faith?
Homily by Rev. Connie Grant; story told by Erica Shadowsong, Director of Lifespan Religious Education; music by Ellen Gozion, Instrumental Music Director and the Schwartz Family Trio.
Live-streamed at 10:30 am
At a time when it may feel as if our lives are on hold, how do we move forward (even though we’re not sure where we’re going)? Homily by Rev. Connie Grant; story told by Erica Shadowsong, Director of Lifespan Religious Education; music by Ellen Gozion, Instrumental Music Director.
Please send in a picture that represents what you are doing to get through this time. Scan your original 2D work of art; take a picture of your original 3D work; or make an original photograph of your subject. Send it to email@example.com on Wednesday, April 29 and Ellen will turn your submissions into a music video to be included in the May 3 service.
The First Unitarian Church Annual Congregational Meeting
The First Unitarian Church Annual Congregational Meeting will take place on Sunday, May 17, 2020, from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Please make sure that this important event is on your calendar!
Our hope is that the meeting can be held in the Undercroft Gallery. However, the Board of Trustees is making contingency plans to hold the meeting by Zoom video conference if necessary.
Important business to be conducted at the meeting will include
• Electing a search committee that will conduct the search for a new settled minister, and
• Electing three new members each to the Board of Trustees and the Nominating Committee
If we can hold the meeting in person, members who are unable to attend will have the option to vote by absentee or proxy ballot. If we need to hold the meeting by videoconference, all voting will be by absentee ballot.
Please stay tuned for more details. Questions? Please contact Board President Martin Schmidt firstname.lastname@example.org or Board Secretary Eleanor Mayfield email@example.com.
Church Sponsored Activities and Community Events
The UUPLAN Virtual Annual Meeting 2020
Where We've Been, Where We Are, and Where We're Going Friday, April 24, 7:00pm - 8:30pm
The meeting will also include a tribute to retiring UUPLAN Board member and long time supporter, Dennis Brunn.
To join via Zoom Video Conferencing: https://zoom.us/j/7132347624
For additional info visit www.uuplan.org
Perspectives on Bringing Personal Morality to Government
Saturday, April 25, 2020
To join via Zoom Video Conferencing: https://zoom.us/j/7132347624
Session 1: 9:30am - 11:30am
Moderated by Rev. Dr. Neal Jones, Senior Minister of Main Line Unitarian Church
Rev. Shawna Foster, Member of the Prophetic Council of the Poor People’s Campaign and former Faith Engagement Director for the Pete for America campaign.
Presentation: "Love, Power, and Politics"
Rob Boston, Senior Advisor to Americans United for Separation of Church and State
Presentation: "The Intersection of Religion and Politics: Let’s Cross It Safely"
Session 2: 1:30pm - 3:30pm
A Provocative Panel Discussion with Pennsylvania Legislators
Participating Legislators are Sen. Art Haywood, Rep. Joseph Hohenstein, Rep. Carolyn Comitta, Rep. Dan Frankel, Rep. Patty Kim, and Sen. Timothy Kearney.
Updates will be posted at www.uuplan.org.
Face masks help people stay safe
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. Members of the UU quilters estimate they’ve made and distributed over 100 masks so far, and we know many others in our congregation have also been sewing masks for themselves and their families.
If you need a mask or two, please email Julie Childers of the Pastoral Care team at firstname.lastname@example.org with your request, including your street address, so we can mail or deliver a mask to you.
As you know, the CDC recommendation is to wear masks whenever you are in public settings. The CDC advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and keep people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.
From your Pastoral Care Team
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:
□ Providing a meal for an individual or family
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!
On March 27, Governor Wolf signed Senate Bill 422, which reschedules Pennsylvania’s primary election from April 28 to June 2 due to the COVID-19 emergency. Voters have the option to vote by mail-in ballot rather than going to their polling place on election day. Mail-in ballot applications will be accepted through Tuesday, May 26, 2020. If a voter has already applied for an absentee or mail-in ballot, they do NOT need to reapply.
In Pennsylvania, you now have two options for mail ballots. You may either choose a mail-in ballot or an absentee ballot to request, complete, and return to your county election office.
Absentee ballot – If you plan to be out of the municipality on election day or if you have a disability or illness, you should request this ballot type, which still requires you to list a reason for your ballot.
Mail-in ballot – Any qualified voter may apply for a mail-in ballot. You may simply request this ballot without a reason.
In order to request either ballot type, you must be registered to vote. Please visit Check Your Registration Status to review your registration information
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 uua.org/braverwiser.
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 email@example.com.
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 http://www.dailycompass.org/author/admin/.
Credo-Building Workshop What do you believe in, not just in your head but in your life? As Unitarian Universalists, we formulate our belief statements in terms of credo (“I believe”) not creed (“we believe”), and our “beliefs” are meaningful as they are reflected in our lives. Our stories are among our sacred texts, and we are responsible for developing our own beliefs in light of our own experience and conscience. This workshop is designed to help participants figure out what they believe about some theological questions such as the meaning of life and death; the nature of human beings; and our place in the universe. Led by Rev. Connie Grant. Six Tuesday evenings, May 5-June 9 by Zoom. Email Constance.L.Grant@gmail.com to register; minimum 6 registered by May 1.
Three - Session Virtual Book Discussion on An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States on Thursdays, May 14, 21, and 28 @ 7pm with Erica Shadowsong. This book is the UUA Common Read (https://www.uua.org/read) ***Registration is required.
A minimum of 6 registrations is required for the class to take place. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to register. Thank you!
April 29, 2020 All webinars will be 2–3 p.m. Eastern.
Climate Change: What's law got to do with it?
This presentation will examine the U.S. laws and international agreements that bear on the regulation of the heat-trapping pollutants that cause climate change, and the role of public health impacts in shaping those regulations. We will also discuss the current political landscape and its impact on the efficacy of regulations and what the future might hold.
Click on the link below for more information and to register for the webinar: https://lms.marphtc.pitt.edu/enrol/index.php?id=158
Anti-racism workshops continue
The series of anti-racism workshops offered by the First Unitarian Church of Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh Freethought Community will continue as one-hour virtual sessions using Zoom.
The schedule for the next four sessions is below. In order to participate, please register for individual sessions at pghfreethought.org
so we can provide you with registration information.
SundayApril 26, 1 to 2 PM. Anti-Racism Workshop - How Racism Shapes the Lives of White People: learning to see how being white shapes the experiences of virtually all white people. We will refer to Robin DiAngelo's work in White Fragility. There will be a presentation followed by discussion.
Sunday May 10, 1 to 2 PM. Anti-Racism Workshop - Anti-Blackness: anti-blackness is foundational to our identities as white people, resulting in conflicting feelings that lead to irrationality and fragility. We will refer to Robin DiAngelo's work in White Fragility. There will be a presentation followed by discussion.
Sunday May 24, 1 to 2 PM. Anti-Racism Workshop - Racial Triggers for White People: whiteness accrues privilege and surrounds itself with protection. To have honest conversations about racism we need to get past these protective barriers. We will refer to Robin DiAngelo's work in White Fragility. There will be a presentation followed by discussion.
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.
The Spirit Seekers covenant group that has been meeting for 20 years shares this festive Easter photo for inspiration to encourage others to connect for fellowship via Zoom. They have been holding a Spirit Seekers Social Hour the last four Sundays. Many other covenant groups are also meeting regularly by Zoom. If your group would like to set up meetings using the church account please contact Rev. Connie Grant at Constance.L.Grant@gmail.com.
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 formor contact Alice Bright : email@example.com
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 firstname.lastname@example.org