A Big Thank You to our Youth

A Big Thank You to our Youth

The Board of Trustees issues a Great Big THANK YOU to the families and youth who put on such an incredible Big Event in February. (So sorry that this statement of gratitude is a bit late to be published.) We recommend that everyone look forward to next year’s Big Event because they never fail to nurture our playful spirits and our tummies. Good food! Good times! Our families are the best, as are our Religious Exploration staff.

Dr. Mary Alm & The UU Asheville Board

Our Community Garden of Love

Our Community Garden of Love

line art of a small girl with a large watering can

Spring is a time of new beginnings, but also a time of planning and preparation for the future. While many of us are itching to get out into the garden and the dirt and plant all the things, we must first plan our gardens and prepare the soil. Right now in Religious Exploration, we are planning our garden for next year! We are looking at things like registration and attendance numbers and figuring out how to group grades, which spaces to use for what, what curriculums we’ll use etc. We are talking to our volunteers, parents, and children and youth about what worked this year and what didn’t, just like how gardeners take stock of which plants thrived and which plants didn’t do well in the previous season. 

It’s also time for us to cultivate a new crop of RE leaders and teachers! Religious Exploration at UU Asheville is like a community garden, it only works because a large group of folks tends it together. Every Sunday morning, 15-25 caring and curious adults take time to invest in our children and youth and cultivate learning, relationships, and fun. Last Sunday, our high school youth were serving hot donuts during coffee hour to help encourage congregants to engage with our annual giving drive. Our Pre-K group was doing experiential learning using different senses to explore nature, while our K-3rd groups combined together to hear a story about community and then helped prepare and beautify our campus by spreading mulch and painting rocks for our actual garden. Our 7th-8th, Our Whole Lives class was learning about pregnancy and parenthood while our other middle school group explored Imagination as a quality of a justice maker. Like a community garden, everyone who participates in RE nurtures their soul and reaps the benefits of being with our children and learning and playing alongside them. 

We always need more helpers in our garden of love and community! Working with our children and youth is rewarding, fun, and fulfilling and I promise it will benefit your own spiritual development in the process! We will also equip you with all the tools you’ll need, including fun training. We have all sorts of needs and we have the perfect fit for you, look for us during coffee hour beginning in April and find your place in our garden! If you already know what you want to do or have an exciting idea – email me! I’d love to hear from you!

Kim Collins 

Religious Educator

Justice Ministry Calendar – April

UU Avl & UU Justice Events
April 26 – UU Justice NC’s Friday Action Hour –  11:00 AM every Friday Sign up for the Zoom link & weekly Friday Action Hour promo email here.Topic: Advocating for Early Voting Plans. In the coming weeks, County Boards of Elections across the state will be meeting to pass their plans for early voting locations and hours. Our pro-democracy movement wants as many early voting days and hours as possible! Especially now that the state has eliminated the mail-in ballot grace period! The deadline for BOEs to pass these critically important plans was moved up by a few months, so we need to get skilled up fast in order to powerfully participate in this process. Join UU Justice NC this Friday for an in-depth Early Voting Plan Advocacy Training with the help of our friends at Common Cause NC followed by time to take action. You can join via this Zoom link.

April 28- May 3 – Climate Justice Summit, The Mountain UU Retreat Center. Throughout the week we will engage in conversations about global climate change and pragmatic responses — individually, regionally, and globally. With musician Joe Jencks.

May 4UUCA Reproductive Justice and Good Trouble WNC are pleased to present a special meetup on reproductive rights in Sandburg Hall on Saturday, May 4th from 3:30-5:30pm.  Our guest speaker will be update us national and local issues.  We will also learn more about an organization called Grandmothers for Reproductive Rights (GRR), and the current status of the Equal Rights Amendment.  All are encouraged to attend.  

An invitation from our Anti Racism Immigration Justice Team:
Lean Into Collective Liberation in Community
How? By participating in the Racial Equity Institute REI Phase I workshop. It is sponsored by the Western North Carolina Racial Equity Collective and will meet in person in Asheville! The dates are Thurs./Fri., May 30 – 31, 2024. If you’d like to participate,register here.  

May 11 – UU Asheville/Greenworks roadway cleanup. 10am – 1pm, Offsite.
Join members of UU Asheville’s environmental team to help pick up litter from a designated roadway. Bring a water bottle and gloves. Meet at the church Saturday morning at 10am to carpool to the location. FMI, contact Venny

May 14 – North Carolina UU the Vote Launch –  7:00pm. Join UU Justice NC and UU’s across the state for the official kick-off of our 2024 UU the Vote Campaign. We will be joined by National UU the Vote Organizer, Nora Rasman, Carolina Jews for Justice Executive Director Abby Lublin, and other guests from our partner organizations across NC. This year, our moral legacy is on the line. Together, we can organize the largest activation of UUs in our state’s history. Let’s get ready to UU the Vote! Register Here! 

June 9 – Blue Horizons Inflation Reduction Act presentation. SH
This presentation will address ways to use the IRA to help fund home improvement projects using environmentally sustainable products. This presentation is open to the public. FMI, contact Venny

Sept. 28 – Climate Justice Revival, SH, details TBA. Sponsored by UUA’s Earth Ministry. 

Community Events & Beyond

April 24 – The NC General Assembly opens its “short session” in Raleigh. The Poor People’s Campaign will be there, and if you wish to join them, go here for details. 

April 24 – VoterRiders webinar to review the voter ID laws in NC and all the ways VoteRiders is available to help, 11 am. Register here.

April 25 –  The Sentencing Project offers “Unlocking the Ballot: Using Data to Expand Voting Rights”, 2 pm. Get details and register here.

April 25 – This is the date for this year’s “Dining Out for Life” to support the WNC AIDS Project. Get details about this important fundraiser for WNCAP here. Learn about being an Ambassador at one of the many participating restaurants here.

April 30 – The Workers Circle offers “Minority Rule: A Conversation with Ari Berman”, 7 pm. Get details and register here.  

May 2 – The League of Women Voters of Henderson County offers “Across the Continental Divide”, an introduction to Braver Angels, 5:30 – 7 pm. Get details for this in person event here

May 4 – Indivisible Asheville/WNC holds its May canvassing event, 11 am – 2 pm. Get details and register here

Special Vespers: April 3rd – Cookout & Learn-Something-New Bingo

Special Vespers: April 3rd – Cookout & Learn-Something-New Bingo

Join the Pride+ Team and Rev. Audette for this Very Special Vespers evening! We’ll have a potluck/cookout – bring a dish to share and we’ll have veggie and real hot dogs & chips available. During dinner, we’ll have conversation and reflection, and then we have a fun night of LEARN-SOMETHING-NEW Bingo (complete with prizes!). What is genderism? Are you apresromantic? How about ceteroromantic? Join us for this fun evening and learn something new with the Pride + team! Please RSVP here.