Home Weekly Update, December 5, 2019

Weekly Update, December 5, 2019

Weekly Update, December 5, 2019

This Sunday, December 8, at 1U

Worship — 10:30 am, Sanctuary

Waiting, by Rev. Samuel Schaal, Transition Minister

The winter holidays provide a season of awe, and of waiting for what is truly true. For what do we wait?

Children & Youth Religious Education (CYRE) Sunday Schedule

9:15 am-1:00 pm Nursery for ages 9 months thru 4 years (EC Nursery)

10:30 am-10:45 am Children begin in service with their parents

10:45 am-11:45 pm Children and youth proceed to the Enrichment Center for Children’s programming

11:45 pm Parents pick up Children in the Enrichment Center

For more information: RECoordinator@orlandouu.org. Also, join our Facebook group & stay informed!

Children & Youth Religious Education This Week

We’re getting ready for our Holiday Pageant: Festivals of Light. We welcome children and youth to help us prepare on Dec. 8 and 15, and perform on Dec. 22. There are roles both behind the scenes and in the spotlight, both speaking and non-speaking. We need to prepare decorations and costumes, learn songs and decorate cookies for after the pageant. Adults needed, too! Contact  Sarah Gray, Interim Religious Education Coordinator, 1urecoordinator@gmail.com .

In our Nursery: Our Nursery staff,  Heather Coddington and Kristin Mataluni report a couple children were in the nursery during a quiet Sunday.

In Dr. Seuss (ages 3-6): Last Sunday the Grinch class was postponed due to a lack of Whos in Whoville. The Grinch will return. For the next three Sundays we work on the pageant.

In Star Wars (ages 6-9):  Last Sunday Jock Smee and Richard Cook welcomed a special guest, Rob Kohl (Sarah Gray’s Dad). The focus was our 7th Principle: In the interconnected web, we are all connected, which included light saber practice and tai chi, a tug of war and a phantom tug of war followed by connected hands tracing. For the next three Sundays we work on the pageant.

In Harry Potter (ages 9-13): Caroline Stastny and Ken Dukes did a Double Divination lesson. The “witches” used a magic eight ball to predict the future. They asked it yes or no questions, then discussed the accuracy of the answers. Would a negative answer lead them to not do something they had planned? This became a discussion on how our actions help steer the course of the future. For the next three Sundays we work on the pageant.

In Youth Group (High School): Our High School Youth Program toggles between Youth Group and Youth RE. Last Sunday was Youth Group led by Melinda Raiford and Josh Goldstein. The youth voted to stay in service, then watch a TED Talk. They created watercolor cards for caring circle. For the next three Sundays we work on the pageant. On Dec. 15 from noon to 1 pm in the Assembly Room is a potluck lunch for youth families, our holiday photo, and the teens get to do their youth group $5 gift exchange!

New to 1U? After Time for All Ages, you are welcome to accompany your child to the labyrinth outside our Sanctuary. Our religious education teachers will be there to provide guidance about the best class for your child and to answer any questions.

Other Sunday, December 8 Activities

Listening Circle:  Process and Be Heard — 12:00-1:00 pm, Gore Hall Room A

A Listening Circle will be held today for those needing a place to process feelings and be heard in response to the tragic news of a local prominent minister with a history of sexual abuse and misconduct who committed suicide.  If you are a survivor of sexual abuse, have lost a loved one in the past because of suicide, are having difficulty with the situation, or just need a place to process and be heard, these sessions will include some members of the Lay Pastoral Care Associates (LPCA) and Rev. Sam. In the meantime, if you need support, reach out to the LPCA (pastoralassociates@orlandouu.org) or our minister (revsam@orlandouu.org). We recognize that these events might cause some, including survivors of sexual abuse, to re-experience painful memories. These are not therapy sessions, but listening sessions where you can be heard.

Coming Now Through Next Week

Friday – December 6

Saturday – December 7

Tai Chi — 9:00 am, Enrichment Center Studio 

All are welcome, class is free, with a ($5) donation to 1U requested. Katherine Vaccaro, our Tai Chi instructor, welcomes you and any questions. The more you practice, the more you’ll benefit. Please email taichi@orlandouu.org for information about the class, which regularly meets Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 9:00 am.

Community Garden Work Session — 2:00 pm, In the Garden

Tasks to tackle include harvesting turmeric and ginger, chain-sawing part of our 15-foot-tall Mexican tree daisy, removing two of our three papaya trees to promote healthy growth, thinning raised bed carrots and beets, disposing of debris,sign making, swapping stories afterward with a cool drink and something to eat. Bring your camp chairs, your kids, your grandkids, your neighbors. Also bring, if you’ve got ’em: potato forks, hand saws, loppers and pruners. Recommended: wear gloves, long-sleeved shirts and either long pants or heavy shorts. Most welcome: gardening stories (disasters make the best tales), and any successful recipes you have for the things we grow. If you plan to join in on Saturday, please RSVP if you can to gardens@orlandouu.org. But drop-ins are always welcome!

Monday – December 9

Tuesday – December 10

Tai Chi — 9:00-10:00 am, Enrichment Center Studio

All are welcome, class is free, with a ($5) donation to 1U requested. Katherine Vaccaro, our Tai Chi instructor, welcomes you and any questions. The moe you practice, the more you’ll benefit.

The Alliance — 10:30 am, Gore Hall  

‘Tis the season to shop at the Alliance Holiday Boutique (still accepting giftable items).

On Tuesday, December 10 at noon, Pat and Cathy Spoone will host the annual Holiday Potluck Luncheon. Luncheon will be at Orlando Lutheran Towers, 300 East Church St., on the 11th floor. Carpool rides from the church will leave at 11:45.  There is also metered parking on Church Street between Lake Ave. and Liberty Ave. For further information contact us at alliance@orlandouu.org.

Eclectic Music Collective Practice — 7:00 pm, Sanctuary

EMC (Eclectic Music Collective) is an open musical collective. The group seeks and encourages 1U members with varied musical abilities and interests to collaborate and create an eclectic range of musical offerings in support 1U’s mission. Key objectives include preparation for musical performances supporting Sunday services and 1U related events. Effective collaboration will be the primary intention and framework.

Folk Ensemble — 7:30 pm, Enrichment Center Studio

Everyone welcome. No particular skill level needed. If you enjoy sing-alongs, please join us.

Wednesday – December 11

Wednesday Morning Meditations at UUUF — 8:30-9:00 am, 11648 McCulloch Rd

All are welcome to participate in a lightly guided morning sitting practice to get the day started at the University Universalist Unitarian Fellowship, 11648 McCulloch Rd, Orlando, FL 32817.

Choir Practice — 7:30 pm, Sanctuary 

The Chalice Choir rehearses until 9:00 pm under the direction of Aubrey Connelly-Candelario. All are welcome!

Thursday – December 12

Tai Chi — 9:00-10:00 am, Enrichment Center Studio 

For those of you who normally work on Thursday, here’s an opportunity to try Tai Chi at our regular 9:00 am time. It’s a great way to burn some calories and relax before the festivities begin. All are welcome, class is free, with a ($5) donation to 1U requested. Katherine Vaccaro, our Tai Chi instructor, welcomes you and any questions. The more you practice, the more you’ll benefit.

Eclectic Music Collective Practice — 7:00 pm, Sanctuary 

EMC (Eclectic Music Collective) is an open musical collective. The group seeks and encourages 1U members with varied musical abilities and interests to collaborate and create an eclectic range of musical offerings in support 1U’s mission. Key objectives include preparation for musical performances supporting Sunday services and 1U related events. Effective collaboration will be the primary intention and framework.

Mindfulness Meditation — 7:00-8:00 pm, Studio (West end of the Enrichment Center) 

Join us every Thursday for eclectic meditation practice based in, but not limited to, the Mindfulness tradition. After introductions, we have a 20-minute sit followed by discussion. We close with another 10-minute sit. Open to those with and without meditation experience. Drop-in friendly.

Other News


Holiday Schedule — All are welcome to attend!

December Worship Theme: What does it mean to be a people of AWE?

Dec. 15      10:30 am Soulstice, by Rev. Samuel Schaal, Transition Minister

The Winter Solstice in the northern hemisphere is a time of darkness and emptiness. It can also be a time of expectation and creation.

4:00 pm Blue Christmas Service, by Rev. Samuel Schaal & Lay Pastoral Care Associates,  Room A in Gore Hall

We’re “supposed” to feel joyous in this season. The truth is, many don’t. The holidays can bring up old memories and pains. Join us for this special service acknowledging our difficulties so we might move forward more centered.

Dec. 21      7:00 pm Winter Solstice Service, followed by Yule Vigil

Dec. 22     10:30 am  Holiday Pageant Sunday (Intergenerational Service)

In this holiday pageant for all ages, we’ll celebrate the season with singing and story as we follow a theme of light through the winter holidays.

                                         11:30 am Holiday Potluck Lunch Following the Pageant

Celebrate the holidays at a potluck lunch in Gore Hall. Please bring a favorite festive dish to share with friends and family.

Dec. 24     Two Christmas Eve Services:

5:30 pm Intergenerational Family Service followed by cookies & cider

7:30 pm Candlelight Service followed by cookies & cider

We join the journey of the couple wandering in the night seeking the hospitality of strangers so they might birth the hope and possibility of a new child. Where is hope being born in our lives? Join us for cookies and hot cider in Gore Hall between the two services. Refreshments will also be served after the second service.

Dec. 29     Opening to Wonder, by Worship Associate Linnea Nelson

Experience the simple beauty of prayerful music and a message of being open to wonder in the new year. You are invited to bring candles to add to the beauty of the service.


 Missed a Sunday?

Audio recordings for most Sunday sermons are online here. Just click and listen.

  1U Wins Best Places of Worship Award

First Unitarian Church of Orlando has been selected for the 2019 Best of Orlando Awards for Places of Worship. For details and more information please view the Best of Orlando Awards website:
2017 Best of Orlando Awards – Places of Worship. If you are unable to view the link, please copy and paste the following into your web browser:
http://orlando.awards-locals.org/s5abt8rk_FIRST-UNITARIAN-CHURCH-OF-ORLANDO

The Red Bench Story

A big thank you to Linda Piantieri, who recently repainted the red bench that sits under the shade tree just outside 1U’s Community garden. If you haven’t come and tried out the three new benches–two beside the perma-garden and one inside it–you ought to. Dan Homblette built them, anchoring them in concrete, and with this gorgeous weather, all four of our benches have become a wonderful place to sit and enjoy the quiet of the garden.

 1U Member Directory Log-in Working Properly

To log into the online Member Directory, go to the MEMBERS drop-down menu on the site. Click on that (or any of its sub-headings) and you’ll be prompted to log in. You can use your current login name and password. If you’ve forgotten your password, there’s a link that will allow you to create a new one. Once you’re logged into the MEMBERS section, you’ll have access to information about current 1U members, including the Member Directory; Board of Trustees members and minutes; Buildings & Grounds information; and volunteering with our children and youth, among other things. Check it out! If you have any problems, contact Carolina Lofgren or webmaster@orlandouu.org.

Caring Circle

Members of the Caring Circle offer kind, practical, tangible efforts to church members who may be experiencing significant joys, concerns, sorrows, or changes in their lives by providing rides to medical appointments, and/or help with meals, pet care, etc., during a member’s period of recuperation. Bev Alig is the CC contact for November, and may be reached at CaringCircle@OrlandoUU.org. Linda Piantieri is the CC contact person for December.

21st Annual Family-Friendly Intergenerational New Year’s Eve Celebration

This event started in 1998 as a way for 1Uers to ring in the new year in community and in a safe place for the night.  Join fellow 1U members and friends for a family-friendly intergenerational New Year’s Eve celebration on Tuesday, December 31. Pot Luck food that lasts all night. Games. Music. Conversation.  Gore Hall doors open at 6:00 pm. Bring food and drinks to share – sodas and/or alcohol are ok. Bring breakfast food if you plan to spend the night. The kitchen will be available if you want to bake or heat something. Bring games to play. We also invite you to bring musical instruments for jamming and singing. Bring your latest craft project. This is an informal evening of fun, food, and fellowship. If any questions, send an email to folkensemble@orlandouu.org. If you plan to spend the night, you’ll need bedding, etc. Event ends at 3:00 am if no overnighters; and 11:00 am Wednesday if spending the night.

1U Auction News

Planning has begun for 1U’s Hearts and Hands 2020 auction on Saturday evening, Feb. 22!  Be sure to mark it on your calendar now. We already have some exciting donations, including Karen Ramberg’s condo for a week in Lido Key, 4 hours of window washing by Rene Stutzman, kayaking for 2 with Ann Mount, and a pair of tickets to The Capitol Steps on March 12 given by Lindsay Stroh.

We are looking for more donations. We need gift cards, invites to dinner in your home, home baked cookies made and delivered, theater tickets…anything  that you can give from your heart or your hands to help support the work of 1U!  Note: please NO  clothing, furniture, hanging wall art, or “garage sale” items. Also, no more than three of a similar item per donor.

Donation forms (for tangible items and for services/events) can be downloaded from the Auction webpage, and they are also available either by email (auction@orlandouu.org) or on Sunday at Gaby’s table. You can return the completed forms at Gaby’s table, or you can send them to the church office. Please let us know what you can give.

Co-chairs Suzanne Oberholtzer and Carolina Lofgren are also looking for people who want to be involved: obtaining donations from businesses and members, helping with food, beverages, decorations, publicity, cleanup, etc. It takes a congregation to put on one of these events! Contact us at Auction@orlandouu.org! Any of us on the committee can use more hearts and hands to get this effort moving.

Pastoral Care Associates

Pastoral Care Associates have been trained to provide a confidential, caring presence to congregants undergoing stressful life challenges. Church members can receive compassionate care when they are in pain, sick, lonely or struggling with changes. If you are a 1U member in need, contact our Pastoral Care Coordinator at PastoralAssociates@OrlandoUU.org.

1U Collaborates on Food Pantry Needs with Joy MCC Church

1U is embarking on a new collaboration with Joy MCC ((JMCC) church, to support their food distribution ministries. Possibilities are varied, including contributing requested food, helping at their food pantry (they feed 100 families a week), assist with creating holiday meals, cash support, and education. The Joy MCC staff and volunteers involved in this work are eager and grateful for any participation on our part. Consider being part of a team to liaison and plan with Joy MCC. Team tasks could include, for starters, forwarding JMCC requests to 1U congregants, arranging for collection (they have agreed to pick up food as needed), planning for education opportunities, sharing information about volunteer opportunities. Contact Kathy Homblette for more specific details, at Welcometeam@Orlandouu.org.

UU Holiday Cards Now Available!

Check out the beautiful UU holiday and solstice cards available online now at https://www.uuabookstore.org/Holiday-Cards-C1408.aspx .

Update Your Contact Information!

Keeping in touch with 1U members and friends is important. You can help keep those communication lines functioning by alerting the office about changes in your contact information: email address, street address, preferred phone numbers. Having current contact information allows 1U to keep you in the loop with all kinds of information about events. It is also vital that current information is available for electronic banking arrangements. Contact Amy Fairweather at churchadministrator@orlandouu.org or call the church office at 407-898-3621. We appreciate your help with this!


Plan Ahead

December 13 — Black Cat Open Mic Night, 7:30 pm-12:00 am, Gore Hall

Are you a performer? Bard, troubadour, musician, singer, poet, actor, dancer, comedian, highly skilled fool? Enjoy being part of the audience? Join others at the monthly open mic night and enjoy wine, beer, pizza, snacks and a great show! All are welcome! $2 donation. More info: BlackCatCafe@OrlandoUU.org or https://tinyurl.com/blackcatdec2019

December 15 — Nora Staton Bookstore Open — Before AND after Church, Gore Hall Foyer

Looking for the perfect holiday gift? Come shop at the Nora Staton bookstore, where you’ll find a large assortment of UU-related titles in many categories. The bookstore is open quarterly, and this is the (late) Fall event. We have some excellent purchase awards: a Unitarian Universalist tote bag OR a bumper sticker — free with a $30 purchase! Cash, checks, and credit cards are accepted for payment. Questions? Contact us at bookstore@OrlandoUU.org.

December 15 — Share the Plate Info Sessions at 9:30 am and During Worship

The Mental Health Association of Central Florida (MHACF) is thrilled about being the recipient of Share the Plate on December 15. At 9:30 am Adult RE, MHACF CEO Candy Crawford will discuss the status of mental health care in Central Florida, and the functions of MHACF’s organization. MHACF provides programs such as their Outlook Clinic, which serves uninsured patients with anxiety and/or depression and co-occurring medical conditions. They also offer the Reflections program: an educational, supportive, safe haven for individuals looking to maintain mental wellness and prevent crisis. Their Guardian Advocate training is a four-hour certification course offered regularly throughout the year to help caregivers become better versed in patient’s rights and knowledge of the Baker Act. These and other MHACF programs offer those with mental health issues a place to turn. But with the enormous cuts from the state, funds are very tight at this time and our help is needed.  

During the December 15 service, the nonprofit Mental Health Association of Central Florida will offer further organizational information. Then all undesignated (i.e., pledge) funds collected on December 15 will be given to the Mental Health Association of Central FL. Your funds are vital. Your generous donations will enable them to continue their good works in our community.

December 16 — Monthly 1U Board of Trustees Meeting — 7:00-9:00 pm, Gore Hall Room A

1U members and friends are welcome to observe Board Meetings. To bring an item to the Board’s agenda, contact an Executive Committee member at least a week before the meeting. Executive Committee Members include the President, President-Elect, Treasurer, Secretary, Minister and immediate Past President.

December 21 — 1U Midlife Couples Group Enjoys Winter Park, 1:00 pm, Winter Park Main Square

Join the 1U Midlife Couples Group for the 24th Annual Merry Tuba Christmas, a free outdoor concert in Winter Park.  Spend the morning shopping the Farmer’s Market, eat breakfast on Park Avenue, or simply join us on the lawn for a fun concert. Bring chairs or a blanket, sun hat, and whatever you would like to eat or drink. Be sure to stop in at 10,000 Villages for any last minute holiday gifts you need to pick up.For more information contact:  Wendy McCleskey, whose contact information is in the 1U Member Directory. Enjoy the rich sounds of Christmas as tuba, euphonium, sousaphone & baritone players of all ages gather in Central Park to perform a FREE concert from the main stage beginning at 1:00 pm. Winter Park’s 24th Annual Merry Tuba Christmas is a free one-hour concert that has become a staple on the holiday list of things to do. Take a break from shopping on the Avenue, and relax with loved ones to enjoy this annual event.

December 22 — Holiday Potluck Sunday, 11:45, Gore Hall

Celebrate the holidays at a potluck lunch in Gore Hall following the Children’s Holiday Pageant. Please bring a favorite festive dish to share with friends and family.

December 22 — Wrestling with Our Understandings around Race — 11:45-12:45 pm, Assembly Room in the Enrichment Center

This is an open meeting on the fourth Sunday of each month. The events of the past few years have called our attention to issues of race, and understanding our relationship to those issues. Each week our attention is drawn to another event in the public eye around race and justice. Many of us are wrestling with understanding and responding to our experience, our emotions, and what we are called to do. It can be difficult, and for some of us it is destabilizing. Let us remain open in our hearts to this journey. We anticipate deep conversation within the congregation, and hope for greater understanding, healing and spiritual development. You may find readings and resources at: https://wordpress.com/posts/wrestlingwithrace.wordpress.com.

December 28 — Into the Light: Winter Solstice Workshop, 10:00 am-5:00 pm, Assembly Room

The final workshop in a series of eight led by Melissa Baker: Our Sacred Gardeners have cleared the field of their dreams, planted seeds of hope, blossomed and bloomed, harvested gratitude, and now it is time to move through darkness and into the light. Together, we will reflect on how we have grown through the seasons with a connection to our deeper selves through art, and determine what blankets of truth we will wrap ourselves in during the season of introspection. We will walk the labyrinth and journey through meditation into the tomb of surrender, as we prepare to be reborn into the light. Lunch will be provided, plus coffee, tea, water. Please bring your journal in case you’d like to write about what comes up for you. The cost for food, supplies for two creative projects, and venue is $65/$50 for 1U members (cash, paypal, or zelle). Sponsored by Pastoral Associates. Come grow with us! SPACE IS LIMITED – PLEASE RSVP IF YOU PLAN TO ATTEND!

January 12 — Religious Education: Movie Talk, 9:30 am in the Community Room (classroom in the far right corner of the Enrichment Center)

Movie Talk is a monthly discussion group, meeting the second Sunday of every month, that allows us to examine our principles through shared cultural events – in this case, movies. Today, join the movie discussion on The Irishman. Can we, should we, cheer for and support a hitman? How far does inherent worth and dignity stretch?


Regional UU and Other Community Events and Activities


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First Unitarian Church of Orlando

Phone: 407-898-3621

Email: webmaster@OrlandoUU.org

Website: https://www.orlandouu.org

Transition Minister: Rev. Samuel Schaal

Email: RevSam@OrlandoUU.org

Affiliate Minister: Rev. Kierstin Homblette Allen

Email: RevKierstin@OrlandoUU.org