From the Minister’s Desk — June 2021

Emergence!

It looks like we are finally beginning to emerge from the depths of the pandemic. The White House announced that 50% of adults have been vaccinated. Case numbers  are down. What has your life been like these last fifteen months? Has it felt like 17 years buried in your cave, alone, dependent on others – family, friends, a huge infrastructure of helpers to keep you supplied with necessities? Have you felt isolated, disconnected, needing those same family and friends, a huge infrastructure of technology to keep you connected? And for entertainment, learning, information about the world around us? It’s been odd, disorienting, a struggle for some, and also something of a relief for those of us who are introverts.

What sort of changes are you experiencing now? Are you fully vaccinated and feeling somewhat safer? Are relaxed masking mandates changing your behavior? Here at White Horse Village, over 90% of the residents are vaccinated and we are allowed to gather in small to medium groups, unmasked. Meal delivery is ending as we return to the dining room. But in public situations – which for me means grocery stores and my pottery class – I am still masked, for the sake of the unvaccinated and unknown passers-by. I feel like I am finally emerging.

Meanwhile, another emergence is beginning. Brood X of the 17 year cicadas have spent most of a lifetime as underground  larvae and nymph forms, eating and growing and shedding old forms to begin coming out in their millions, ready to make a lot of noise so as to ensure the next generation the 17 year cycle. I learned recently that they are not only harmless (assuming you don’t panic when one gets into your car while you are driving) but actually beneficial. My old friend Carol Wagner (with whom I connected again via Facebook, after many years) posted these facts from the Love Our Land website:

  • • They prune mature trees.
  • • They aerate the soil.
  • • Bird populations will increase.
  • • They provide a food source to nearly everything with an insect diet.
  • • They leave plants healthier.
  • • They are an awesome natural fertilizer.
  • • They are a symbol of rebirth, spiritual realization and ecstasy, and immortality.

There’s a challenge! The UUFP board points out that we have never been “closed” but we have been connecting virtually all these months, shedding old forms and preparing to emerge again to in-person meeting for worship and celebration, learning and helping. (See our website for more details on the decision process on how and when we hope to meet.)

But, as we look forward to emergence, let’s think about more than “getting back to normal.” For the cicadas, “normal” is 17 years underground followed by a brief but glorious symphony of mating calls and commitment to the next generation. How do we want to celebrate our return to the above ground world? What have we learned from our time apart? What new energy can we bring? How shall we bless the world?

With love and hope, Kerry

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President’s Message — June 2021

“The world is closed for renovations, Grand Reopening soon.” ~ Anonymous

A lot has changed over the past month as it relates to the pandemic. Case rates of COVID-19 are down, number of people immunized are up and the strict rules on how we can safely interact with each other are easing up. This is great news so I am sure that everyone is wondering  when UUFP will reopen. I will answer this honestly by stating that we never closed.

While the building was closed, we continued to offer Sunday Services and coffee hours via technology. So, the real question becomes when will we be able to conduct these activities in person? I am pleased to share that the current plan is to hold outdoor services (weather permitting) starting in late June and continuing throughout the summer months. And as long as all factors indicate that it is still safe to meet indoors, we will hold our first indoor Sunday Service on September 12, which is the Sunday after Labor Day weekend. It is also important to note that we will still continue  to offer Sunday Services via technology for those who choose not to attend in person. And, thanks to the Membership Committee, there will be numerous social events held at the fellowship throughout  the summer. So, there will be many upcoming opportunities to meet in-person.

On a different note, I want to remind everyone that we will be holding our Annual Congregational Meeting on June 13 after Sunday Services, starting at approximately 11:45 AM. We will conduct  this meeting via Zoom. While everyone is welcome, only members  will be able to vote on the motions set forth. For those without internet capability, you may participate live via teleconference.  If you are unable to participate in this meeting, you may still vote on the motions via written proxy. Please submit your written proxy either directly to a board member or send it in to the fellowship prior to the meeting. Every voting member should have received a copy of the Notice of Meeting which outlined the motions to be voted on as well as a copy of the proposed budget. If you have not received this, please let a Board member know. I would like to encourage everyone to participate in this important meeting.

Lastly, I want to put in a plug for purchasing Giant Grocery Cards through the fellowship. The fellowship gets 5% back on the amount that is purchased (if you purchase a $100 grocery card, the fellowship receives $5). Now while 5% may not sound like a lot, I will let you know that through-out the course of the past year, only three individuals have routinely purchased cards. However, since they primarily shop at Giant, the fellowship has earned on average $80/month from their purchases which means the fellowship earned $960 for the entire year from just those three individuals. There have been others who have also purchased cards sporadically though out the year, so the Fellowship earned over $1,000 simply through members shopping at Giant. If you do any shopping at Giant, I would like to encourage you to purchase Grocery Cards through the fellowship. If you would like to purchase cards, you may reach out directly to me through the contact information in the UUFP directory.

I look forward to seeing everyone very soon! ~ Linda K.

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UUFP YouTube Channel

Subscribe to the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Pottstown YouTube Channel!
All of our recent Sunday Services are posted to the channel. Check it out!
Let Rick D. know if you have any questions.

Vespers

Please view our previous Vespers services offered weekly April through July 2020. They are available at this link on the Message from our Ministers and Presidents tab, found under the Meet UUFP tab.

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Sunday Service, June 26, 2022

A Chalice of Blessings
Speakers: Rev. Dave Hunter & Rev. Kerry Mueller.
Dave and Kerry will sum up our ministry with you and leave you and with our blessings.
Please join us for a Farewell Party following the Service.

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Sunday, July 3, 2022

No service will be held today in honor of our 4th of July weekend. We hope you all have a safe and fun weekend with family and friends.

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Sunday Service, July 10, 2022


The End of Your Comfort Zone
Speaker: Mary Ryan

Mary came across an adage recently that spoke to her. It was about life beginning at the end of a person’s comfort zone. It started her down a path of thinking of the times she’d stepped out of hers. And the times she hadn’t. It’s a service about learning what you are truly capable of doing.

Please join us for Coffee Hour after Service

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Sunday Service, July 17, 2022

Two Wings of the Human Spirit
Speaker: Mark Bernstein

Many UUs among us would have us believe that Reason and Faith are mutually exclusive. But others will argue that they are compatible, even nurturing of one another. Where does Faith begin and Reason end, and vice versa? Let’s consider how we marry these two ways of looking at the world in order to forge greater relationships and lessen conflict in our congregations. Mark is a member of the UU Church of Delaware County, Media, PA.

Please join us for Coffee Hour after Service

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Sunday Service, July 24, 2022

Embracing Selah
Speaker: Rev Beth Marshall
Unitarian Universalist Minister

In a time when our world is hurting so very much, this service focuses on the power of what individuals can do. The title is drawn from the name of a thriving nature preserve outside of Austin, TX and the man who dreamt it into being. The preserve is named “Selah,” which he translates as: “To pause, to stop, to look around and reflect. To take care of it, and share it.” Rev. Marshall has served congregations in New York, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Ohio in a variety of ministerial roles.

Please join us for Coffee Hour after Service

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Sunday Service, July 31, 2022

Time May Change Me
Speaker: Emily Quarles-Mowrer

There is an anonymous quote that reads, “A bend in the road is not the end of the
road…unless you fail to make the turn.” Change is hard. We may be required to find the flexibility to let go of things we have held to tightly. We may be required to find strength in places we had never previously considered. Join us as we think about taking the twists and turns of life with grace.

Please join us for Coffee Hour after Service

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Go100Pa: June 5, 2022

At 2 p.m. on Sunday, June 5, we met with State Senators Katie Muth and Amanda Cappelletti for a discussion on the “Go100PA” legislation that would put PA on track to reach 100% renewable energy by 2050. Q&A and refreshments to follow. Find out more at go100pa.com

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From the Minister’s Desk — June 2022

Dear Ones,

Grief and glee.  That’s what I’ve been feeling lately, since Dave and I announced that it was time for us to retire from parish ministry.  Glee because other needs are tugging at us — relationships, family history, art and music making, reading, community responsibilities here at White Horse Village. And as we age, ordinary householding and bodily maintenance become ever more time consuming.  It will be good to do all these things with more energy and attention.  But sorrow is coming to the fore.  How we will miss you!  In these short three and a half years, attenuated by being very part time, blighted by the shutdowns and restrictions of covid, we have come to love you all.

So we  offer  you these five expressions of farewell:

We Love You. We Forgive You. Please Forgive Us. Thank You. Goodbye.

We love you, individually and collectively.  You are a valiant small congregation, living your faith, caring for each other.

We forgive you. Well, there’s not much to forgive, so let us reiterate that despite the struggles in being a small congregation in difficult times, you have kept going, making progress, reaching out. Please forgive us. We are sorry for all we have not accomplished, for moments of inattention and carelessness. Please release us from the burdens of our failures and frailties.

Thank you. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you, to get to know you, to laugh and cry and eat and sing with you, to love you. You have enriched our lives and deepened our experience of ministry.

Goodbye.  We will let you go, knowing that you are in good hands — your own, and each others’, that you will work together  to become the congregation that you are meant to be. With the help all of you working together,  leaders and elders and children and youth, newcomers and long-timers, with denominational advice and encouragement, and mostly with your own deep spiritual resources and commitment, you will continue to bless the world.

And please forgive me if I weep at our last service.

Love, Kerry and Dave

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President’s Message — June 2022

“And since all this loveliness cannot be heaven, I know in my heart it is June.”                            ~ Abbe Gould Woolson

While Mother Nature has certainly been busy bringing forth all the beauty that is spring, her efforts are hard-pressed to match the labors put forth by the many worker bees who have worked diligently over the past month beautifying our grounds. A new, butterfly and native plant garden has been created, the vegetable garden has been started, and a good old fashioned spring cleaning has occurred. While many people have worked on these endeavors, special thanks go out to Kay and Jon Price for coordinating all the efforts, Kim and Matt Kulp for rototilling our gardens, the Duske family for donating plants and the children for planting marigolds.

And our gardens are not the only things that are growing – our UUFP family also grew! Monica Buckley became the latest member  of our family. Welcome Monica!

The month of June will be busy for the members and friends of the UUFP. Here are some key dates:

•     June 5: State Senator Katie Muth used our facility to hold a town hall meeting entitled “Go 100% PA”. The event was open to the public.

•     June 12: Annual Congregational Meeting. Members will be receiving a Notification of Meeting as well as a proposed budget via email (except for those who have already been identified to receive it via the US Postal Service). While only members can vote during this meeting, anyone can attend this meeting. This meeting will occur after Sunday Services.

•     June 26: Celebration Party for Rev. Kerry and Rev. Dave. Everyone is invited to come and wish them well as they retire from ministry and embark on the next phase of life.

Hope to see everyone at the upcoming events.

With gratitude, Linda K.

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Sunday Service, June 5, 2022

Why Are We Here?
Speaker: Rev. Dave Hunter
Why do we have religious communities? Or, more generally, why do we have religion? Please don’t expect the definitive, ultimate answers to these and related questions?
Coffee Hour follows the Service

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