Sunday, July 28, 2019, 10am Poetry Sunday
Coordinated by Virginia Bower, Sammy Fong, Charlie Marks, and Mariana Warner
The theme for this year’s Poetry Sunday is “A Matter of Life and Breath.” Take a breather from busyness and join us. You will be welcome here, as always.
Sunday, July 21, 2019 Rev. Tobias Van Buren
Time is woven through all we are and do, but what the heck is it? How do we regard it? Are we enslaved, driven and dragged by time? Does it weigh upon us? My sermon will suggest ways to become liberated from time-bondage.
Bio: Tobias is a member of UUCA and also an ordained UU minister. He has a BA from the University of South Carolina and an M.Div. from Starr King School for the Ministry. He served congregations in Atlanta, Baton Rouge & Beverly, MA, then left ministry from 1979 to 2013 to do shrimping and crabbing and developing a clam-oyster farm in the Charleston, SC area. He also enjoys gardening and fiction writing. Tobias and his wife, Winslow Tuttle, moved here in 2018 and are active in UUCA.
On behalf of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville and this year’s Coming of Age Class, I want to thank you for your generous contribution to our Coming of Age program’s trip to the Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, New York. Your contribution made possible a week-long learning adventure for nine teens and four chaperones. Traveling in two vans, covering over 700 miles each way, there were visits to three different UU congregations, a tour of Cornell University and the Entomology Department, time for hiking and swimming and several days of service projects at the Farm Sanctuary.
During the trip, the Coming of Age participants got to put their UU values into action. They experienced each other’s support on the emotional ups and downs of a very active trip in close quarters, explored the interconnectedness of all beings, and gained insight into the food production system that feeds us. They also experienced some added independence in being responsible for their daily budgets and schedules.
Here are some quotes from the COA teens:
“I became responsible with money and eating wisely on the COA trip.”
“This trip was such a unique experience. I learned a lot of information at Farm Sanctuary that was heartbreaking but was really a wake-up call for how I can make a difference. I am really grateful to the donors for making it possible for us to go on this exciting trip!”
“The trip was wonderful and the Farm Sanctuary was enlightening.”
“One of the best experiences of my life. A true bonding trip. The animals were cute. It made me think about becoming vegan.”
And from their chaperones:
“I am grateful to have been part of this trip. It was incredibly rewarding to get to know the teens a little better as they learn about their UU values and how to live them. “
“I volunteered to chaperone so I could get to know the CoA youth. I can report complete success on that front! I particularly enjoyed discussing current events, the Democratic debates, and a couple of philosophical conundrums that helped to pass time during the long drives. I’m curious to know if our visit to the Farm Sanctuary changed any attitudes towards their dietary choices. I look forward to exploring that and other topics with them during the coming year.”
“This trip was the culmination of a year-long experience in which participants explored their own understanding of spirituality, God, the inherent worth of each individual, and their interconnectedness to the world around them. At the end of the year, the youth presented their credos to the congregation in a service that they planned and delivered.”
“I know that when I thought about my children coming to UUCA, I envisioned that my kids would have a community of peers, outside of school, that shared their values and were supportive. This CoA group gave me faith that that is possible. Each of these students had different personalities and yet they have a strong bond and truly supported each other during the trip. Their connection was strong, but even got stronger through spending time together on the trip learning, working, having fun and exploring their UU identity.”
Again, thank you for your support and for making this invaluable experience possible.
Sincerely, Tom Dessereau, on behalf of the parents of this Coming of Age class.
Sunday, July 14, 2019 Rev. Ed Brock, Guest Minister
We will explore what creates, destroys, undermines, and sustains healthy relationships between individuals AND groups. Rev. Brock’s remarks will be based on his recently published book Optimal Relationships.
Bio: Rev. Ed Brock is UU minister who specializes in transitional ministry and is an Accredited Interim Minister. Rev. Brock lives in Atlanta, Georgia with his wife, Alphise, and their two daughters. He is also a licensed psychotherapist and has written a book entitled “Optimal Relationships: A Path Toward a More Civil Society.”
Sunday, July 7, 2019 Rev. Scott Hardin-Nieri, Guest Minister
What if we could understand animals? What would they communicate with us about what they see and what they are experiencing? What kind of invitations might they offer to the human community? Rev. Scott Hardin-Nieri will explore these questions weaving stories and sacred text.
The Rev. Scott Hardin-Nieri is partner, dad, spiritual director, pastor, and sojourner. He is the Director of the Creation Care Alliance of Western North Carolina and Associate Minister of Green Chalice of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Prior to living in North Carolina, Scott and his family served in the vulnerable cloud forest of Monteverde, Costa Rica. Scott is ordained with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and enjoys accompanying people during transformative experiences.