Full Recycling Bin

If your recycling bin is filled-up, put extra in cardboard box and place it next to the bin for pick-up.

Gratitude & Song

Photo of Minister Claudia JiménezTomorrow, many of us will observe a multi-dimensional holiday in a complicated year wrapped in an epic election and tied up with a pandemic bow. What a year this will have been! For many, the Thanksgiving mythology was replaced by recognition of the genocide and displacement in the foundation of this country even as we embrace a secular celebration of gratitude for family, friends, and the joys they bring. This year the pandemic complicates our gatherings. For virtual connections with loved ones – those tantalizing, frustrating screen sessions that leave us partially sated but nevertheless must sustain us through this strange time – are the only option. I ache to hug my daughters even as I’m glad they are behaving rationally and staying in their homes. This is a difficult, lonely time heightened by our inability to embrace each other. So please know that your UUCA family is here. Rev. Mark, pastoral visitors, and I are available for a phone call or a porch visit.

Even in this weird, seemingly apocalyptic time, there are many opportunities for gratitude, for the simple gifts we receive each day: birds at the feeder, a beautiful sunrise, squirrels on a fence post, kindness from a neighbor or friend. What else can you add to the list?

I am deeply grateful for our UUCA staff who create virtual spaces to connect with those of you who have the bandwidth to join a Zoom program, watch a service recording, make phone calls or write notes to fellow congregants, participate in spiritual deepening groups, engage in committee meetings or attend an in-person, masked, physically distant gathering. I am grateful to serve a community that holds each other in spirit and care. UUCA is not the building, it is each of you, engaged as you are able in this difficult moment. Your efforts and stalwart support are so reassuring that we will survive this time with energy and a renewed purpose.

Thank you for being part of this loving, evolving, community. I invite you to listen to three musical pieces that speak to me at this time. I hope you enjoy them. I also invite you to share on our Facebook pages or via email your reactions and music that fills your spirit this time of year.

Gracias a la Vida
This song written by Chilean Violetta Parra and sung by Argentinian social activist Mercedes Sosa is on my inspiration playlist. I listen to it often.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jgjAOk6BX8g&feature=emb_logo

Translation
https://lyricstranslate.com/en/gracias-la-vida-thanks-life.html-3

Grateful: A Love Song to the World
Musicians Nimo Patel and Daniel Nahmond produced this uplifting song of gratitude with participation from people from all over the world. I wonder what your gratitude words/phrases would be if you could put them on the “gratitude tree.”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sO2o98Zpzg8&feature=emb_logo

Reflection on Healing
This video was produced by the Asheville Symphony in partnership with the Asheville Museum of Art. Art and music create a space for reflection on the healing that our country desperately needs. Grateful for the creativity and talent in our Asheville community.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1i3dkr5vGts&feature=youtu.be

Rev. Claudia Jiménez, Minister of Faith Development

Vespers Dec. 2, 6:30 PM: Stillness & Program 7PM Cross Cultural Engagement & Activism

Join us December 2 as Rev Mark leads a Vespers on the Dec theme of stillness.

In observation of Human Rights Day, Dec 10 our after Vespers program invites us to explore cross cultural engagement and privilege in activism work. Co facilitators Deb Holden and Rev Claudia will share case studies for discussion from the Unitarian Universalist Holdeen India Program established to be in solidarity with India’s struggle for social justice and human rights.

December – Theme: Stillness

2       Vespers Leader: Rev. Mark
Program: Human Rights Day Discussion, Deb Holden, Rev Claudia

9       Vespers Leader: Rev. Terry Davis
Program: Navigating the Landscapes of Power, Joy McConnell

16     Vespers Leader: Rev. Claudia
Program: Spiritual Practices III: Heart/Creativity Practices

23 & 30     No Vespers – Winter Holidays

What I Love About Islam

Sunday, December 27, 2020 11am
Rev. Mellen Kennedy, Guest Minister

The tension & misunderstandings between Islam and the West are tragic and unnecessary, according to our speaker, minister of the Springfield UU Meetinghouse in Vermont, chair of Inayatiyya: a Sufi Path of Spiritual Liberty, and founder of Interfaith Bridge, an organization dedicated to cultivating friendship and understanding across faiths.

Thanksgiving Vespers 6:30 PM (No program Wed. evening)

Join Rev. Claudia for a meditative vespers Wed., Nov 25 6:30 PM using the story “Giving Thanks” based on words from the Peoples of the Six Nations. It has been a complicated, challenging year and we are invited to consider the everyday gifts around us despite the challenges we face. Below is prompt to share with a young person in your life and, that you can draw or journal about. Enjoy!

  1. Draw something that makes you happy.
  2. Draw something you couldn’t live without.
  3. Draw someone who helps you.
  4. Draw something that makes you smile.
  5. Draw something you love to do.
  6. Draw something you are thankful for.
  7. Draw someone you love.
  8. Draw something you think is fun.
  9. Draw something that makes you feel good.
  10. Draw something that makes you laugh.

December – Theme: Stillness

2       Vespers Leader: Rev. Mark
Program: Human Rights Day Discussion, Deb Holden, Rev Claudia

9       Vespers Leader: Rev. Terry Davis
Program: Navigating the Landscapes of Power, Joy McConnell

16     Vespers Leader: Rev. Claudia
Program: Spiritual Practices III: Heart/Creativity Practices

23 & 30     No Vespers – Winter Holidays