Let Us Go, Together!

by Senior Minister Rev. David A. Miller. I am so proud and honored to be a Unitarian Universalist. With very little exception, I believe that we so badly want to build a beloved community where humans are loved and seen for who they are and that compassion, respect and equality are primary values. It is also true that we may not always agree on the strategy or tactics to achieve this goal. As we do the long, hard work of dismantling oppression and systems of white supremacy, it can be frustrating when we see there is no one right way, no outline, no clear path. We as a faith tradition, […]

Welcoming September

by Lay Minister for Membership and Outreach Shannon Williams. “The Sun will rise and set regardless. What we choose to do with the light while it’s here is up to us.” – Alexandra Elle Barely a month has passed since the UUCF Board of Directors welcomed me into my new role as the Lay Minister for Membership and Outreach. Here at the beginning of the congregational year, I want to share a bit about what we might create together in the seasons ahead. The word “welcome” captures not only September’s theme, but the experience of stepping into this world of UU leadership. My family only began attending UUCF in July […]

Two ways to build up our reservoirs

by Senior Minister Rev. David A. Miller. “Church is a place where you get to practice what it means to be human.” – Rev. James Luther Adams What helps each of us stay whole and holy in these extremely challenging times? After week upon week of incivility and a seemingly endless flow of assaults on decency and kindness, how do we build up our reservoirs of hope, gratitude and compassion? Some of us crave spiritual grounding, nurturing and respite. Others may want to be moved to action – literally and metaphorically – through more lively interaction. While no one UUCF worship service can be all things to all people, we […]

What will we do with the intern?

by Intern Minister Pippin Whitaker. Greetings new community! I am your new intern minister, and I will be with you half-time for the next 2 years, September through May. I am also a seminary student at Meadville Lombard Theological School, which is one of two Unitarian Universalist seminaries in the country. I live in Vienna with my spouse, Steve, and our three children, who range in age from 4 to 9. Yes, all this keeps me busy, but what a joyful busy it is! And what a joy it is to be an intern at UUCF. I have been a Unitarian Universalist by label since I was a pre-teen, but […]

Announcement from DRE Linnea Nelson

My Dear UUCF Family, Today I need to share the news that I will soon be saying goodbye to you. Later this fall, my husband, Ted, and I are moving to Florida. My last day as Director of Religious Exploration will be Oct. 1.  A career opportunity arose for Ted at a time when both our boys are launched, and this became the right opportunity for our family.Our family has found a beloved home here at UUCF over the past 22 years. My role as DRE for the past 5 years has been a transformative and spiritually deepening experience. Words alone cannot express how much I appreciate the privilege of being […]

Seeking Commitment, Love and Care From Each of Us

by Senior Minister Rev. David A. Miller. It always seems like new congregational years, beginning with Ingathering in September, bring fresh starts and new possibilities. This year that is as true as ever. As I write this, it also feels like so much more. We are a country traveling through a tumultuous period. A time when our institutions, both for good and for bad, are journeying through significant transitions. UUCF once again is also experiencing transitions with the arrival of our new assistant minister Sarah Caine and Rich Sider announcing his retirement. In these times, it feels incredibly important to be aware of our own feelings, to promote self-care and […]

Rich Sider announces retirement

Aug. 11, 2017. Dear UUCF congregants, I’m writing to you today to let you know that I have decided to retire in January 2018. After 9 years in this position, I’m looking forward to a change of pace. As I think about leaving, I am grateful to all of you for giving me the opportunity to work in an organization with values and a mission in sync with mine. That’s a real gift. I also have greatly appreciated the trust you have placed in me and all the encouragement you have given me during my time here. The exact date of my departure in January is still somewhat flexible as […]

Farewell to Rich Sider

What’s Next? from Paul Atelsek, President, UUCF Board of Directors, and Senior Minister Rev. David A. Miller. Earlier today, UUCF’s Director of Administration Rich Sider announced his retirement. Rich has been an incredibly important member of the staff team and has devoted endless time and energy to sustaining UUCF and helping it thrive. For 9 years, Rich has supported events, fundraising and the general administration of the congregation in ways that have allowed us to continue the important work of our mission to each other and our community. Plans for our congregational expression of gratitude will be announced in the near future. The intention is to have a replacement hired […]

Grounds project scheduled for last two weeks of August

One of the Reach Campaign projects we’ve been planning for some time is finally going to happen the last two weeks of August. As part of our improvement of the UUCF grounds, we will be installing a water catchment infiltration trench and retaining wall at the base of the hill below the traffic circle, which will retain the water that currently flows across the yard in front of the Program Building, causing erosion and creating a muddy mess, especially in the winter. This has been a problem for a long time. Perhaps you’ve noticed the exposed tree roots from the erosion or the mud after a rain. The wall and […]

Bearing Witness to UUCF’s Soulful and Transformative Work

by Rev. Julie Price. What a privilege to be back with you in ministry for 3 weeks! Thank you for welcoming me so warmly on Sunday. The last time I led worship with you was the summer of 2015, culminating a year as your intern and summer minister. I have been back at UUCF since last fall, sitting in worship with you, volunteering in Religious Exploration and bearing witness to the soulful and transformative work that UUCF has been doing this past year. Many of you have asked me about my ministerial plans. I am currently in between units of training to become a Board Certified Chaplain. This summer, in […]