April 16, 2020
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         Photo by Stuart Hastings April 3, 2020
This Weekend at First Unitarian Church
Worship Celebration News

Sunday, April,19 2020  
Streaming at 10:30 am at

“The Wisdom of the Earth”

Today's indigenous wisdom teaches us that while we cannot go back to what once was, we can still live in harmony with the earth beginning now.  What can we learn from the wisdom of indigenous people, the original stewards of the lands upon which we now live, about looking forward with hope for the future? 


Homilies by Erica Shadowsong, Director of Lifespan Religious Education, and Rev. Connie Grant; music by Ellen Gozion, Instrumental Music Director, Maddy Izzo, flute, and Mary Pat Mengato, chant with movement.


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
Publicize Your Event

Share the Plate News
Our Share the Plate recipient on April 19 will be the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank, committed to making sure all of our neighbors have access to enough food during the coronavirus pandemic.  They are currently providing thousands of boxes of food through emergency distributions.  Every $100 can supply 500 meals.   More information is available at

In January we raised $1599.47 for the the Bukit Bail Fund, a coalition of individuals and organizations striving to provide support for those incarcerated at Allegheny County Jail.  See for more information.  
Our February we raised $1029.80 for UU the Vote, which supports congregations and UU organizations in activating thousands of UUs to mobilize voters, counter voter suppression, and engage in spiritually grounded, values-based issue conversations with voters in their communities. Visit to learn more. 
Because our March 15 service was cancelled, our planned March recipient will be rescheduled for a future month.
Is there an organization you’d like to nominate to be the recipient of our third-Sunday Share the Plate offering? Please send your nomination to Tony Rutigliano ( on behalf of the Serve Council.  Please include the following information:  
Name of organization
Website address or other source of information
Is this a 501 (c) (3) organization (required)?
What is your involvement with this organization?
Why do you consider this an appropriate recipient for our Share the Plate offering?
Preferred month (if any)
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 or Board Secretary Eleanor Mayfield

Spirit Seekers fellowship via Zoom
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
 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

Volunteer Opportunities
Please contact Rev. Connie Grant at or 847-840-8542 if you would like to learn more about any of these opportunities to help congregation members stay connected with each other and with the First Unitarian Church of Pittsburgh!

Engaging the Congregation
Are you interested in being part of an Engagement Team, to help church members and friends connect with each other and with the church.  This would be particularly useful now, and would serve the church well into the future! 

Virtual Coffee Hour
Would you like to help coordinate virtual coffee hour by Zoom after our livestreamed worship services? 

Technical Support for Streaming Services
Our tech team has been doing an amazing job getting streaming services up and running, achieving high production values and maintaining this central experience for the church community.  If you are AV-savvy and/or have a technical bent, your assistance would be welcome!

Church Sponsored Activities and Community Events
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 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:

□ Transportation

□ Providing a meal for an individual or family

□ Shopping

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)

Fortunately, in PA, we can now request a Mail-In Ballot, without needing to give a reason. With the Coronavirus uncertainty, the Post Gazette article in Sunday's paper, recommended we all apply for Mail-In Ballots. Here is a link to the article:  

Voters have until April 21 at 5 p.m. to apply for a mail-in or absentee ballot, and while absentee ballots require voters to disclose if they are — among other things — away at college or going out of town for work, mail-in ballots don’t.  

The mail-in ballot application can be completed online at with a valid Pennsylvania driver’s license or PennDOT-issued photo ID. Voters can also download and complete a paper application and send it to their county election office, or fill one out in person. 

When the primary ballot is finalized, the ballots will be sent to approved applicants.

It’s the best way to “ensure one’s vote is counted if concerned about heading to the polls,” said Charlie O’Neill, deputy executive director of the Republican Party of Pennsylvania, 
Upcoming Service
April 26
“Faithful Doubt”
“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?  Rev. Connie Grant speaking.

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


Visit the RE Reflections Blog for Weekly Inspiration!
The blog will be updated periodically

Adult Religious Education
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 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 (  ***Registration is required.  

A minimum of 6 registrations is required for the class to take place.  Please email if you would like to register.  Thank you!

Climate Change and Mental Health
 Wednesday April 22, 2020  
All webinars will be 2–3 p.m. Eastern.
Recent weather catastrophes, along with increasingly scientific research findings, are raising Americans’ awareness of the climate crisis. It is no longer a distant, abstract threat. Many already directly feel the impacts of climate change, through extreme storms, heatwaves, drought, sea level rise, or melting ice and permafrost. Others might not (yet) be personally impacted by extreme weather events, but a growing number, especially young people, experience worry and anxiety about the climate and about their future. Researchers and practitioners from around the world are working to understand, and prepare for, the many ways that climate change is affecting human health and well-being. This presentation will review current research focused on the mental health threats of climate change from extreme weather events, from gradual impacts such as drought, landscape changes, and rising sea levels, and from future-oriented anxiety. We will end with a brief discussion on individual and community efforts to activate hope and build resilience.
Click on the link below for more information and to register for the webinar:

                                                               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
 so we can provide you with registration information.

Sunday April 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.

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


Children and Youth Religious Education 
RE Parent Virtual Check - In 
Today, @ 8pm

For security purposes, 
registration is required.  Register here:

Visit the RE Reflections Blog for Weekly Activities and Resources!

The blog will be updated periodically
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
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First Unitarian Church · 605 Morewood Avenue · Pittsburgh, PA 15213 · USA

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