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Monthly News for January 2018
Minister's Message

"Blessings at Year's End"

"I remember with gratitude the fruits of the labors of others, which I shared as a part of the normal experience of daily living.

I remember the beautiful things that i have seen, heard, and felt--- some as a direct result of definite seeking on my part, and many that came unheralded into my path, warming my heart and rejoicing my spirit.

I remember moments of distress that proved to be groundless and those that taught me profoundly about the evilness of evil and the goodness of good.
I remember the new people I have met, from whom I have caught glimpses of the meaning of my own life and the true character of human dignity.

I remember the dreams that haunted me during the year, keeping me ever mindful of goals and hopes which i did not realize but from which I drew inspiration to sustain m life and keep steady my purposes.

I remember the awareness of the spirit of Life that sought me out in my aloneness and gave to me a sense of assurance that undercut my despair and confirmed my life with new courage and abiding hope."
                                                        ---Dr. Howard Thurman
Happy New Year!                                                  
Sunday Services 
Sunday, 7 January 2018, 11 am
Byron Ballard
"New Year's Revolutions"

Each January, we are prodded about our resolutions for the coming year.  Some of us ignore it, others reluctantly mutter something bland and appropriate about getting fit or staying in touch with friends.  What if  we turned this concept on its ear and pondered the possibilities involved in this new revolution of the planet around the Sun?  How will we revolve?  What will these new vistas reveal about ourselves, our cultures and our  journey?  Join Byron Ballard for a seriously whimsical look at 2018 and where we can go from here.
H. Byron Ballard is a western NC native, teacher, folklorist and writer.  She is senior priestess and co-founder of Mother Grove Goddess Temple in Asheville, NC. Her essays are featured in several anthologies and she writes a regular column for Witches and Pagans Magazine. Byron is currently at work on “Earth Works: Eight Ceremonies for a Changing Planet” and “Gnarled Talisman: Old Wild Magics of the Motherland”.  
Sunday, 14 January 2018, 11 am
Rev. Michael J.S. Carter


In Hebrew, the word for suffering is yagah (yawgaw). In Yiddish it is tsuris, and it is defined as troubles, worries, aggravation, woes, grief and heartache. In Tibetan, Pali, or Sanskrit, the word  is  Dukkha, commonly translated as suffering, pain, or unsatisfactoriness. In whatever language one finds the word, it is generally acknowledged that suffering is part of everyday life on some level. All spiritual traditions and religions weigh in on this difficult topic. Why not us? What can we learn from the daily reality of suffering? Can suffering transform our lives as well as the lives of others? Let's explore and get a handle on this notion of "suffering" to begin the New Year.
Sunday, 21 January 2018, 11 am
Rev. Michael J.S. Carter
"The Good News of the Universalist"
It's time for another sermon about our history just to remind us that we do have one, as we begin this new year. The following words by the man who brought Universalism to these shores sums it all up. John Murray said, “Go out into the highways and byways of American, your new country. Give the people, blanketed with a decaying and crumbling Calvinism, something of your new vision. You may possess only a small light but uncover it, let it shine, use it in order to bring more light and understanding to the hearts and minds of men and women. Give them not hell, but hope and courage. Do not push them deeper into their theological despair, but preach the kindness and everlasting love of God.”  Now, some of you may have known or may not have known that John Murray was a trinitarian Universalist. A sense of confidence in both divinity and humanity is a part of Universalism.  Murray believed that human courage and the kindness of the Universe were central to the faith of the Universalist.
Sunday, 28 January 2018, 11 am
Rev. Jeff Jones
"A few of My Favorite Things: A Personal Journey with Voluntary Simplicity"

Downsizing is often seen as a rite-of-passage as we get older.  But what if living with fewer material possessions was a way of life?  And as I will suggest in my sermon, material clutter is not the only baggage we might carry with us in life.

In June 2017, Rev. Jeff Jones left full-time parish ministry (nine years in Fredericksburg, Virginia, and seven years in Marietta, Georgia) to pursue Community Ministry in Compassionate Living, a cornerstone of which is Nonviolent (Compassionate) Communication developed by Marshall Rosenberg. He and his wife now live in Asheville, NC, and he is looking forward to creating this new ministry as student, aspiring practitioner, facilitator and activist.
Sunday, 4 February 2018, 11 am  
Rev. Rob Morris
“Permaculture Prophets: hipsters in the scriptures digging up dirt on the divine.”
We welcome Rob Morris, executive director of Christmount Retreat and Conference Center, to our pulpit this morning. Growing up in the Disciples of Christ denomination and having served as an associate pastor in Raleigh and as the principal pastor in Fort Worth, Texas, his faith has evolved to the point where he views the center of his calling as  “compassion for all people and all creatures as a Christian/ Buddhist/ Humanist.” 
RE News 
 Happy New Year!!
This month the elementary class will be continuing their world tour with "visits" to Suadi Arabia and Thailand.  
Our preschool class is busy with further exploration of our 7 Guiding Principles.  The having a say, working for a peaceful world and the Web of Life are topics our newest UUs will have fun learning about and putting into action.
Youth in our congregation have been jamming their way through different social justice topics with music from across the decades and discovering what speaks to their hearts. 
Exciting things will be happening in the following weeks as we explore and discover what the next couple of seasons bring us.  
Thank you!
To all of you who so generously donated both cookies and urgently needed items to the Veterans' Restoration Quarters, we are grateful.  The kitchen manager who received your cookies, bars and fudge on December 24th, was overwhelmed with the donation of homemade goodies.  And wow, the cookies trays were most definitely festive!
In addition to the personal care items and clothing pictured here, four more bags of donations arrived after this photo was taken.  We collected many items of new warm clothing as well as half of a large bin of personal care items. The desk manager was surprised to receive the donation and eagerly sorted our donation for distribution.  Again, on behalf of the residents of the VRQ, we thank you.
                                                      Carolyn Shorkey and Milt Warden
Memorial Garden 
Mark your calendars for January 14th! After the Sunday Service, while you enjoy our potluck lunch, plan to attend a Question and Answer session with the Memorial Garden Committee. We'll show you the garden plan and talk about the sale of memorial bricks, name plates and benches as a fundraiser for garden construction.  This is not a meeting for us to receive your input about the garden use policies or landscaping plans.  Both the policies and the plan have been approved by the Board of Trustees and the committee is ready to move forward with the project.
In the meantime, go to our website,, click on About and open up Memorial Garden. For your reading pleasure and important information, you will find the garden policies and procedures posted there.
Carolyn Shorkey, Chair
Board Report
UUCSV Board Meeting Abbreviated Minutes
Monday, December 18, 2017
>>    Lee Reading reported that we are close to projections on total income and expenses for the first half of our fiscal year.  
>>    The Board unanimously approved Jim Carillon as a replacement on the Board for the position vacated by Frank Pizzardi.
>>    There was a review and discussion about our 5-year Plan. At four years into the plan we are ahead of projections for hiring a minister full time, providing benefits to him beyond what the plan called for, and staff salaries. Currently we have 45 active friends and 112 members as of mid-November. Carol also reported that in the last 3 months have seen a net gain of 4 members. The results of a congregational survey done in 2013 generated the goals in the plan. Jim agreed to work on a new survey with help from volunteers.
>>    Pam, Bob, and David will meet to review our by-laws and propose changes.
>>    We need a committee chair for the Building and Grounds Committee. We have several members who have offered to help with building and grounds projects but we are still seeking a coordinator for these willing volunteers so that work on targeted projects can move forward.
>>    Lee suggested a review and rewrite of job descriptions and hours needed for our paid staff which reflect the growing size of our congregation. He also suggested that we have a Building Manager on site on Sunday mornings. Jim said that he has been the point person for personnel issues for the Board of Trustees for a long time. He will put together an active committee, hopefully recruiting members to serve with HR experience.
>>    The children's Religious Education program attendance at church on Sunday's averaged between 5 and 6 children for the month of November.
>>    Our Social Action Committee has formed a subcommittee to determine where the $4,000 the congregation budgeted for distribution to local not-for-profits should be allocated.
>>  The BoT will switch their meeting day to the third Thursday of the month starting in January. They will meet from 6:00-7:30 p.m.
>>    For detailed minutes of this meeting, please see the posted minutes in the lobby.
Happy New Year!
In this issue:
Minister's Message
Sunday Services 
RE News 
Thank you!
Memorial Garden 
Board Report
Room in the Inn 
Luunch Bunch
Choir News
PSI Group
Women's Group
Friday Fling
Care Team 
Room in the Inn 
For 2018 our RITI hosting dates are February 3rd and 10th, both Saturdays. 
Where: Black Mountain Methodist Church (red brick church house at 101 Church Street.)
Now with the busy holiday season behind us here we are again preparing to host RITI just a few weeks away.  We once again are reaching out to our generous congregation to consider helping by bringing main dishes, salads, vegetables, desserts, food items for breakfast and brown bag lunches for the 2 days we host.

Each year our congregation partners with 3 additional churches in Black Mountain helping provide supper, breakfast, lunches and safe overnight stays for the 12 women in the program.  By your selfless giving and caring we do make these special ladies' lives a little brighter.  It is hard not to think of their courageous determination as they strive to re-establish an independent productive life, with the guidance and support of the program.
Thank you to all who have already signed up.  There still are numerous dishes and lunches needed so please see the sign up list and see if there is something you would like to contribute.  

Please know your continuous support for RITI is sincerely appreciated.  The ladies are so very grateful.

Janice DZierra
980-229-8688 (call or text)
Luunch Bunch
Meets January 2nd at noon st UUCSV.  The topic is "Making a Difference."
Choir News
 This month I'm happy to be celebrating my tenth year as choir director at the UUCSV.  I certainly have enjoyed all these ten years, and especially seeing the choir stretch and grow in capability.  And we're still having fun! 
In January we will perform on the 28th.   We will rehearse Sunday the 21st at 12:15 after the service, then on Wednesday the 24th at 7 PM, and then once more at 10 AM on the 28th.   Come and sing with us-  everyone is welcome!   Linda Metzner,
choir director
PSI Group
The Psi group will meet on Tuesday January 23 at 1:30 pm to learn about and have readings from the Pages of Shusta divination and meditation cards with a presentation from a guest speaker.  The word "Shustah comes from ancient Sanskrit and means "the footsteps back to god." These footsteps comprise portions of ancient mystery teachings, including Kabbalah, astrology, cosmology, color therapy, meditation, and spiritual enlightenment. 
Women's Group
The women's group will meet at 1:00 pm on Friday January 12 at the Lynx Condo meeting room to discuss the rewards and benefits of aging.  (This was scheduled to be the topic for December; however, that meeting was canceled due to the snow storm.)
Friday Fling
January’s Friday Fling, a fun party for grown-ups, usually every third Friday of the month, will be held on 19 January at the UUCSV church. Red and white refreshments will be provided; please bring a potluck dish to share.
First movie choice: 
Paterson (2017; Adam Driver, Golshifteh Farahani; a week in the life of a Paterson, New Jersey, bus driver (and poet) and his dreamer wife).
Second movie choice: 
Maudie (2017; Sally Hawkins, Ethan Hawke; a bright-eyed intelligent young woman, hunched with hands disabled by arthritis, yearns to be independent of her protective family, answers an advertisement for a housekeeper by a 40-year-old bachelor; she's a terrible housekeeper, but is a potential folk painter; romance ensues; based on a true story)
Potluck begins at 6:30. For further information call Norm Kowal (458-4537). 
Care Team 
Deb Vingle is the coordinator of our Congregational Care Team. You can reach Deb at 828-674-4290 or at
Thanks, Deb! 
Next Newsletter 
The deadline for the February Newsletter is January 25th. Please  submit  items to this   address.  The best format is simply in the body of an email. 
UUCSV Leadership
Board of Trustees:

Jim Carillon
Kathryn Coyle
Susan Culler, Vice-Pres.
Bob Falanga
Pam Sain
Carol Sheeler
David Wells, President 
Rev. Michael Carter,
ex-officio, non-voting
Board Member
Lee Reading

UUCSV  •  500 Montreat Road  •  Black Mountain, NC 28711

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