Tidings Your Monthly Newsletter
July 2019 - Interdependence
To view the entire newsletter online click HERE.
Many people will be celebrating the birth date of this nation this July 4th. Cookouts, traveling to the beach, hiking, rafting, lazy days and evenings, all of these things we enjoy as we head into the month of July. Individually, and collectively, we have so very much to be thankful for as citizens of this nation. I strongly suggest that we keep those blessings in mind this month as you go about the day to day business of living. Realize that we stand on the shoulders of others, and that nothing we do is done alone.
Dr. Howard Thurman reminds us that each one of us has a crown held over our heads that each day we are attempting to grow tall enough to wear. This sentiment is not meant to put a damper on your festivities. It is meant to remind you (and myself) that Independence Day, is really about "Interdependence Day." The phrase, "God Bless America" is really about "God Bless Everybody". America may be unique, but so is every other nation as well.
America will always be diminished as a nation if we cannot, or do not remember that we are part of the interdependent web of life. Nothing is really advantageous to us if it is not advantageous to others. Until this is fully realized (for realizing this is a form of independence, seeing clearly is part of being truly independent) the holiday we know as The Fourth of July, or Independence Day, will never really ring true for many of our citizens. With that said, enjoy this season of summer. Enjoy friends and family. Take the time to count your blessings. Make this Interdependence Day time well spent!
Fourth of July at Santa Ynez
By John Haines
Under the makeshift arbor of leaves
a hot wind blowing smoke and laughter.
Music out of the renegade west,
too harsh and loud, many dark faces
moved among the sweating whites.
Wandering apart from the others,
I found an old Indian seated alone
on a bench in the flickering shade.
He was holding a dented bucket;
three crayfish, lifting themselves
from the muddy water, stirred
and scraped against the greasy metal.
The old man stared from his wrinkled
darkness across the celebration,
unblinking, as one might see
in the hooded sleep of turtles.
A smile out of the ages of gold
and carbon flashed upon his face
and vanished, called away
by the sound and the glare around him,
by the lost voice of a child
piercing that thronged solitude.
The afternoon gathered distance
and depth, divided in the shadows
that broke and moved upon us . . .
Slowly, too slowly, as if returned
from a long and difficult journey,
the old man lifted his bucket
and walked away into the sunlit crowd.
|July 7, 2019. 11:00 a.m.|
Last summer our UUCSV poetry group shared our love of poetry with you for the first time. This year, given this July 4th weekend, we thought we would share poems, thoughts and songs based on the concept of FREEDOM. Not only Freedom FROM some current condition, but also Freedom TO act on what our inner selves tell us is the right thing to do. Come participate in a service to enhance your own freedom and our collective freedom as a community in how we navigate our inter-dependent lives. Larry, Mamie, Ruth, Bill, Laura, Damaris, Ann, Jim and Carolyn (in absentia) will share their thoughts on a whole range of freedom via poetry and music.
Sunday, July 14, 2019 11:00 a.m.
Rev. Michael J.S. Carter
"The Little Red Hen"
Because of the current state of affairs in our country, I wanted to tell this story again as it has a timeless wisdom to it. This month on July 4th, our nation once again celebrated “Independence Day.” What does that really mean in this time in our country’s history. We as UUs affirm and “respect the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.” This is our 7th Principle. Are we really “independent” from anything or anyone, as a society and as individuals? Come and take my hand—let’s explore!
Sunday, July 21, 2019 11:00 a.m.
Rev. Michael J.S. Carter
"The Control Freak"
Many if not all of us have been at some point in our lives what is known as a “control freak.” Perhaps we know people who are. Perhaps some of us still are. There are many reasons for this but the most obvious and common reason is that of fear. We are simply afraid of life and the unknown quality that it brings. This is an existential fear because we know life is unpredictable and finite and we fear the unknown. In many cases, the person who craves this illusion of control is oblivious to the fact that they are operating out of fear. They rationalize that they are doing what they are doing for the greater good, or to help someone, some organization, some person or thing. Yet I believe that on some unconscious level we do get it that in this life that anything can happen to anybody at any time, and we think we need to be on top of that reality. Granted, life can be scary and unpredictable. But we can learn to "go with the flow" with some conscious effort and some hard work on our part. Let's unpack this together. See you on Sunday!
Sunday July 28, 2019 11:00 a.m.
Rev. Michael J.S. Carter
"Therapy and Unitarian Universalism"
What exactly is the difference between religion and psychology? Is there really a difference between the two? Is today’s religion a form of psychology? In my training as a pastoral counselor, my supervisor preferred his chaplains to be in therapy at the same time they were visiting patients. He wanted us to be in touch with as much of our own baggage as possible and to leave as much of it at the door of the patients room as possible. Why is it that UUs are much more accepting of the insights of professional counseling and therapy, while our more conservative brothers and sisters appear to be much more hesitant and some outright hostile to the idea? Let’s explore.
|From our Board President...|
As many of you have heard and read, the Board, along with the Communications Committee, revised the UUCSV monthly newsletter's format and added a name: Tidings. As part of that change each month you will see a letter – From the President – which will include an overview of the previous month's old and new business and the most important board decisions, instead of a reproduction of the meeting's minutes. You'll get an insight into board decisions and how they affect our church life now and in the future. However, if you wish to see the actual minutes, they will continue to be posted in the church's foyer.
This month, as outgoing president, I first want to welcome our new trustees: Spence Foscue, Robert Tynes and Evan Yanik and say thank you to Kathryn Coyle for agreeing to serve a second term. Also, thanks to volunteer Treasurer, Lee Reading, and volunteer secretary, Milt Warden, for agreeing to continue their service to the board.
Briefly, highlights from the June 20 board meeting include:
· The balance sheet is strong with slightly more than $115,000 in assets; about $7,500 in total liabilities and approximately $107,700 in total equity. Income is ahead of expenses – after 11 months – and we are expected to end the fiscal year in the black. These positive financial results are a strong indicator of how we all work together to make things happen.
· While Beata Ball officially will no longer be the Director of Religious Education July 1, the Personnel Committee is hard at work finding a replacement. We were excited to learn that a new DRE should be at work before the end of the month.
· We unanimously approved the Garden Committee's proposal to place $10,000 of its budget – since the Garden's construction is complete – into a separate temporary unrestricted reserve fund that allows the board to use at its discretion. This fund will enable the board to provide monies, as needed, for out-of-the-ordinary congregational needs and projects.
Our closing business was to vote for officers for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. I am pleased to announce that Linda Tatsapaugh was elected president and Kathryn Coyle vice president. And to paraphrase one of those ubiquitous expressions – You're in good hands with Linda and Kathryn.
UUCSV Board of Trustees
|A Thumbnail Profile of Robbie Madden by Shelly Frome|
You could say it all began some seventy years ago when Robbie Madden was about twelve years old.
“My mother worked for many years at a supermarket in Ames, Iowa,” said Robbie. “And she was the most dependable person they had. She was a stock clerk and performed all kinds of jobs to perfection. When the manager of the store retired, they were looking for a new manager to promote from within. But they didn’t even consider my mother who would have been great. Instead, they gave it to a bag boy. Mom came home and said ‘If I were a man, I would have gotten that job’ and that really made me mad. That just wasn’t right.”
From that point on Robbie became a strong feminist. She realized at that time women’s rights and the prospect of living up to their potential simply weren't at issue and were never questioned, but Robbie did - a lot. By the early Fifties she was reading such works of existential ethics as The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir and Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique. Soon, young women everywhere were talking about “the problem that has no name” alluding to the fact that their gender was neither appreciated nor patently equal.
“It all came to a boiling point,” she said, “around nineteen-seventy-two when the Equal Rights Amendment came out. Though public speaking didn’t come naturally to me, I remember Sally Kempton, the journalist and radical feminist, saying ‘It’s difficult to fight a battle when the enemy has outposts in your own head.’ I went on to follow the path of activism and organized people around some of the pressing issues of the day like sexual harassment and the active search for ways to empower women.”
Subsequently, among Robbie’s endeavors and accomplishments over the years are the pursuit of justice centering on major causes leading to her involvement in labor struggles, antiracism, antipoverty, women’s health, consumer protection and, above all, ratification of the ERA, especially in Louisiana and North Carolina. She has also been field director for Common Cause in Louisiana, Arkansas, and Mississippi, board chair of the Southern Mutual Help Association, founded Ratify ERA-NC, helped organize the ERA-NC Alliance and served as co-president. Needless to say, the list goes on and on and includes her current work on a book titled Six Decades an Activist.
|June Is Busting Out All Over|
by Susan Culler and Andy Reed
The month of June bursts forth in many colors in western North Carolina... from the rhododendrons' white, pink and purple blossoms, to yellow, orange and multicolored day lilies, to the native flame azaleas that you need sunglasses just to look at. But there's another colorful array that springs out in June – and it's a national event – the rainbow!
Last month the LGBTQ community observed Pride Month, and so did we at UUCSV. Why Pride in June? And why did our congregation get involved?
For lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and questioning people, June 28 and 29, 1969, were two days of confrontations that became the foundation of the modern LGBTQ rights movement. But what actually happened?
Writes Maya Salam, a reporter with The New York Times, "The Stonewall uprising, which erupted 50 years ago this past month, is ultimately a patchwork of accounts. What we know for sure is that the police raided the Greenwich Village gay bar called the Stonewall Inn — and it wasn’t the first time. But this time, patrons had had enough. The raid ignited a violent conflict, and then protests, that lasted for days. But as my colleague Shane O’Neill found out for his new mini-documentary, Who Threw the First Brick at Stonewall?, no one can agree on almost anything else (or even if a brick was thrown at all), other than that it was a messy evening that accelerated and defined gay rights.”
Forty-six years later on June 26, 2015, almost to the day the Stonewall riots began, the Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriage is legal in all 50 states of our country.
“The inherent worth and dignity of every person”
On May 26, we unfurled our rainbow flags in honor of our fellow humans. Our service that Sunday, led by Rev. Michael Carter, was about inclusion of all and included readings and poetry from LGBTQ writers. That service marked the kick-off of five months of activities that renew our Welcoming Congregation.
The next Sunday, June 9, we held a Rainbow Party Potluck – despite no rainbow but a lot of rain. We had delicious food, surprise bags of colorful candy an a cupcake walk for which Evan Yanik provided the music and Tina Rosato the delicious cupcakes. We played board games and card games while getting to know each other better, while the drop-down screen showed photos of the 2007 Welcoming Congregation committee.
For UUCSV, the LGBTQ community and Mother Nature alike, June is definitely a month to take in all the beautiful colors of the rainbow.
|Friday Fling, July 19, 5:30 PM |
Potluck and discussion after movie
Boy Erased—starring Lucas Hedges, Nicole Kidman, and Russell Crowe
Based on a true story, this portrayal is an intense, emotionally-charged film.
What do you do when you’re dissatisfied with something? Trade in the car. Redo the kitchen. Return the rescue dog to the shelter. Tell your gay son he must “cure” his homosexuality through “conversion therapy” … or you’ll disown him.
That’s what Garrard Conley’s father—an about-to-be-ordained Baptist minister—did when his 19-year-old son was outed during college. Conley went through a trial program, months of counseling, and a final period of intensive intervention. Unlike many forced into these pseudo-scientific programs, Conley stood up to his “counselor,” found his own voice, and ultimately accepted his true self.
So-called conversion therapy has been discredited for decades. In 2001 U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher asserted, “There is no valid scientific evidence that sexual orientation can be changed.” The American Psychiatric Association refutes the presumption that homosexuality is a mental disorder and describes therapists’ attempts to change sexual orientation as unethical.
In the U.S. today, conversion therapy's highest-profile advocates are the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) and fundamentalist Christian groups with which it frequently partners. Most important, it already has been banned for minors in 16 states, Washington DC and Puerto Rico – but not North Carolina. In our state, Equality North Carolina and Campaign for Southern Equality are leading the way to end conversion therapy. Check out their website at www.bornperfectnc.org.
"Everyone would take a turn giving a Sunday service, and we had a pot luck every Sunday," says Dawn Wilson of the early days of Black Mountain's Unitarian Universalist Congregation. "We first met at the Primary School, then later at Lakeview Center, as the UU Church of Asheville helped us get on our feet, around 2000-2001."
"One of our first actions was to purchase hymnals, and each person had the opportunity to put a dedication plaque in the books they donated."
Dawn helped start the first women's group of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Swannanoa Valley. "Nobody can remember who Lucy Stone was anymore," she says.
The women named their group Sisters of Lucy Stone, "SOLS," to honor Lucy Stone (1818 -1893) a prominent U.S. orator, abolitionist, and suffragist, and a vocal advocate and organizer promoting rights for women. Lucy Stone also kept her birth name when she married and was a Unitarian.
SOLS was involved in several church actions. They held an annual "Trillium Festival of Follies and Flings," which was much more than a yard sale. There were contests around men's knees, and plant sales, and games for children at this first sale every spring. The proceeds helped us become a Partner Church to a Unitarian church in Medeser, Romania.
Members of Unitarian congregation in Medeser, Romania
Member of SOLS having a tea party in Black Mountain NC
SOLS also gave women's teas...where we donned our best hats and shared sips in teacups and munched crumpets. SOLS funded hiring our music director, Linda Metzner, and purchased the curricula of Cakes for the Queen of Heaven and Rise Up and Call Her Name, and other women's religious education programs.
Dawn Wilson is one of the keepers of the wisdom and knowledge of the beginnings of UUCSV. Our congregation is much richer for the many hats that she has worn on different committees. Currently she chairs the Memorial Garden Maintenance Committee. Thanks so very much, Dawn.
Bette Bates - July 14David Groce - July 14
Larry Pearlman - July 15
David Reid - July 24
Jey Hiott - July 26
|Volunteer Recognition by Carolyn Shorkey|
Please join me in welcoming Dawn Wilson as the Chairperson of The Garden Committee. Along with garden maintenance volunteers, Barbara Bryan, Ruth Pittard, Kathi Rice and Maggie Schlubach, Dawn will oversee the ongoing care of The Garden.
They welcome you to enjoy this beautiful outdoor space for remembrance and reflection. I extend my deepest heartfelt gratitude to The Garden (Planning and Construction) Committee who met many, many times over the past year and a half. Ursula Goebels-Ellis, Ann Sillman, Mary Soyenova and Dawn Wilson shared with me a ministry for creating a garden.
We adhered to our principles of recognizing the worth and dignity of each member of the committee and used the democratic process in our decision making. To demonstrate our commitment to this project, attendance at our meetings was almost always 100% and no one dropped out.
Hurray for us!
Hurray for our volunteers!
Hurray for donors!
Hurray for our community!
|The Garden at UUCSV was dedicated on June 2nd as a place of remembrance for deceased members, friends, and loved ones of the UUCSV. Last Sunday, arriving early for a committee meeting, Carolyn Shorkey found a little red book with a photo inside left at the base of the memorial monument.|
The book is Little Ways to Keep Calm and Carry On and was inscribed "June 13, 2019, UUCSV. "
"I was in town cleaning out our family's storage unit, and wanted to stop by. Scott Conklin told our family that UUCSV made a memorial to the members who have passed on. Seeing this means the world to me. UUCSV was a wonderful place for me and Emily. We called it our second family. I thought this book could be helpful, as it has been for me. Even after all the years. It never replaced her, but it helps me realize that if we keep calm and carry on life will be OK."
(Bert and Eileen)
Emily Eliot-Gaines, R.I.P.
The book will be available in our library and the photo is in the Memorial Book in the foyer.
|RE - Religious Education by Beata Ball|
Independence Day is upon us. This holiday represents, to me, a great change in leadership and the way things are run. This summer the Religious Education department will not be holding children's classes for the reminder of the summer. We are giving everyone a break to enjoy service as a family. Please keep an eye on the Current (our weekly newsletter) for information about these changes.
As someone who has been working with children and teens for more than ten years and the last three of that here at UUCSV, I have been so blessed to be a part of a growing, thriving Religious Education program. The deadline for this article was before my final day as Director of Religious Education so I am able to take this opportunity to thank all of you who volunteered in the classroom, ran a program, helped organize an RE event, were in the background giving me a thumbs up, or were the one(s) who decided to entrust me and our program with your most precious gift - your child(ren).
You will not be left in the lurch. We wouldn't do that to you! We have a new Director of Religious Education!
I am so pleased to introduce to you Susan Hicks. She will be taking the reins in the Religious Education department and continuing to offer the high quality, welcoming programming we are accustomed to having at UUCSV. The Board of Trustees was unanimous and the selection committee was thrilled to have her join our family.
Susan has been the Assistant Director of Religious Education at the UU Church of Asheville for ten years. She has worn many hats, including being a leader at the annual UU Southeast Winter Institute in Miami FL (SWIM).
I hope you will all welcome her and support her as she learns our culture and gets settled in her role as our Director of Religious Education.
|As the NC legislature attempts to increase pressure on local law enforcement to cooperate with ICE, local advocates are increasing their own work to support and safeguard immigrants. |
CIMA (Companeros Immigrantes de Las Montanas en Accion) Asheville needs more volunteers in our area. There is a special need for volunteers fluent in Spanish but everyone can help in some way. CIMA has held two verifier trainings this spring and will continue to do so as long as there is a need. Verifiers work in pairs to follow up on calls to CIMA's hotline alerting us to possible ICE presence in a neighborhood. Additionally, the Social Action Committee is exploring other ways to get involved, including transportation to hearings and sponsorship for immigrant individuals or families. For more information, contact Anna Marcel de Hermanas or a Social Action committee member or visit CIMA's website.
|Poetry Corner - "The Cost" by Mamie Hilliard|
From across “the big pond”
word just arrived, a suicide-bomber,
killed my neighbor's young soldier-son.
Both boys believers
in their mission.
hug their country’s flag.
honor their son‘s ideals
Both mothers look for baby pictures.
...I grieve with both mothers.
Mamie Davis Hilliard. May 2004-2019
(Each month we will gladly post a poem by one of our congregation.)
|Introducing our partner congregation in Williamsburg related to promoting our UUCSV BnB facilities.|
Visit beautiful Williamsburg, Virginia, and stay with a WUU host family. Our accommodations are comfortable, friendly and affordable, all within the Williamsburg vicinity. Our friendly UU hosts offer a private bedroom, a private or shared bath, and a light breakfast.
For B&B details, check out our website wuu-bed-breakfast or contact Kerry Mellette, WUU B&B Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 757-220-6830.
All room donations benefit the Williamsburg Unitarian Universalists. We look forward to your visit.
|Editor's welcome by Barbara B. Rogers|
|Welcome to all who are curious about our new publication, Tidings... a place that we can share together our thoughts about just about anything; spiritual, educational, biographical, social justice, environmental, poetic, opinions...etc. Please feel welcome to submit articles of 250 words or less, which may then be edited. This process can be shared if you submit your work early enough in the month so I can send the edited version back to you for your ok before the publication date, which will probably be the last day of each month. |
We cannot print any political endorsements, since we are a tax-exempt religious organization. Photos are welcome in high resolution format. There are different memes for each month. July isn't just about Independence, but as Rev. Michael Carter says, about Interdependence. That will also tie into the UU 7th Principle.
Thanks so much to all who submitted their great ideas for the title of this publication. We decided that monthly Tidings would go well with a weekly Current...though why a water theme works in the mountains, I'm not sure. Perhaps it's because these represent the flow of communication among us UUs. I’m excited about this new sharing together!
For the month of August, the meme will be Abundance. What do you have to say in Tidings?
|Our Web Site is uusv.org where you can find more information about us.|
Rev. Carter's hours are Monday-Thursday. His day off is Friday and he does not answer emails on his day off.
Address: 500 Montreat Rd, Black Mountain NC 28711
email: email@example.com The Current is published each week on Thursday which is where our current events are listed. Send information to Myra Shoen, Administrator by Tuesday.
Tidings is published monthly, send entries by the 25th of prior month, or questions to Barbara Rogers at firstname.lastname@example.org