December Newsletter The Tucsonitarian
Rev. Bethany Russell-Lowe
Rev. Theresa Inés Soto wrote about our
Unitarian Universalist faith:
In this community, we hold hope close. We don’t always know what comes next, but that cannot dissuade us.
We don’t always know what to do, but that will not mean that we are lost in the wilderness.
We rely on the certainty beneath, the foundation of our values and ethics.
We are the people who return to love like a North Star and to the truth that we are greater together than we are alone.
Our hope does not live in some glimmer of an indistinct future.
Rather, we know the way to the world of which we dream, and by covenant and the movement forward of one right action and the next, we know that one day we will arrive at home.
I love these words because they articulate what I see as the foundation of our shared faith. Contrary to what I hear from some people, in Unitarian Universalism you cannot “believe whatever you want.” You cannot, for example, believe it is appropriate to eat the cake at social hour, without serious consequences. There are other beliefs you cannot hold without serious consequences. We do not hold common beliefs, but that does not mean that every belief is upheld by our values. We embrace all people, but not all actions.
In Unitarian Universalism it is covenant, not dogma, that binds us. A covenant is a set of assumptions or shared expectations of how we will be when we are together. Our covenants evolve from what we value. Covenants are aspirational documents. We expect to break them. And when we do fall out of covenant, we are always given the opportunity to come back to covenant.
People ask me often why we need a covenant. I believe we need covenants so that we can continue to, in Rev. Soto’s words, “hold hope close.” Covenants keep our highest ideals in front of us. They ask us to become our best selves. They keep us dreaming of a similar world.
Last month, on November 9th, 40 members of UUCT gathered to begin the process of recreating a congregational covenant. We talked about the many meanings of covenant (personal, congregational, religious, and historical) and then we brainstormed the values which are important to our community. We brainstormed nearly 90 values! Then, we got our dot stickers and each put them by the values that are most important to us. I feared that each of the 190 values would receive 1 dot. But to my delight, the dots clumped. Our dots clumped around words like “honesty,” “trust,” “the Platinum Rule,” “acceptance,” and “compassion.”
We then handed the process of creating language out of these values to a Covenant Team. That team will start meeting in early December. Expect for there to be a number of opportunities for you to read the draft covenant language and give feedback on that language over the course of the church year. I anticipate we will vote on a congregational covenant at our Annual Meeting in May. I hope you will engage in this process with honesty, curiosity, and open-heartedness.
Worship Schedule December
Dec. 1 Rev. Bethany, Worship Associate, Josue Ortiz
The Miracle of Science (Intergenerational)
Dec. 8 Rev. Bethany, WA Nina Tolley
Resilience: the Miracle of Life
Dec. 15 Rev. Matthew Funke Crary, WA Carrie Cooper Living in the Future, Today
Dec. 22 Rev. Bethany, WA Bob Gordon
Gratitude: The Miracle of Light
Dec. 24 5 p.m. Pageant! Jamili Omar, Director, LFD
Dec. 24 7 p.m. Rev. Bethany, WA Betsy McMillan
The Desert: A Midwife of Prophecy
Dec 29 Rev. Jordin Nelson Long, WA Bert Meek(TBA)
Thank you to everyone who helped make our first2nd Hoursuch an amazing success! We hosted 54 participants in 5 workshops. Wow!
We will offer2nd Houragain December 8, 12:30 - 1:30.
In this year of experimentation,2nd Houris one way for people of all ages to learn, grow, and deepen in understanding, community, connection, and service.
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Up in the Sky! It's a Bird?
It's a Plane? No... It's OWL!**
**Our Whole Lives, a comprehensive sexuality education for children and youth will begin January 2020, Sundays at UUCT.
All people deserve accurate, sensitive information about their bodies and relationships! OWL provides this and so much more from trained educators in age-appropriate ways. In January 2020, we will be offering classes for K-2 grades, 4-6 grades, and 7-9 grades. If you know a young person who is ready for this program contact the
Check out the UUA's website for more details:
UUCT Care Team
Need a 'Virtual' Hug?
Do you know someone who is ill, alone or would appreciate
a visit or call?
Care Team Seeks a Rides Coordinator
Recently, there has been an uptick in the number of people asking for rides to church on Sunday morning.
The Care Team is looking for a volunteer (or two!) who might be willing to create, implement, and run a rides program so that those who need a ride to church can be matched with people who live in their neighborhood who can give them a ride to church.
Rev. Bethany is happy to help you think about how this might work if you are interested, but haven’t done this before. Contact her if you are interested!
Board of Trustees
As the holiday season is upon us, the board is already planning for 2020 and beyond. As regular business takes up all (and more) of the board meetings, there will be an extra meeting in January to just think about the future.
Long term planning will also cover how to cover the costs of an aging campus and the need for a new heating/cooling system in Holland Sanctuary over the next several years. As I walk onto the campus and see so many things I wish could be done, I try to always appreciate the beautiful space we are blessed with.
I love the hard work our landscaping and patio crews do, the beautiful architecture, and the quiet memorial spaces and peaceful corners to rest in. With thanks to so many who volunteer their time to do maintenance and keep our campus safe.
One of the interesting developments is the new Committee on Ministry and the Healthy Congregations Team (HCT). Integrating these groups into our current systems will support UUCT leadership development of current and future members.
There are plans in place for a very busy spring with an interesting auction, an all-church work day, and the beginning of our OWL programs and Chalice camp, just to name a few. The alternative worships continue and it seems like there is something new going on every day. Our church continues to be an active and vibrant community.
Ushers and A/V teams are looking for additional help as the church has begun to live-stream into Goddard. Our membership continues to grow and expand our church family monthly.
I’m looking forward to an exciting holiday season and continue to hope for a world full of joy and wonder.
Healthy Congregations Team and Workshop
March 21, 2020
In the Congregational Forum on November 17th, we introduced the newly formed Healthy Congregations Team (HCT).
The HCT’s primary role is to facilitate conflict resolution/transformation between members of the congregation. They willnotfacilitate conflict between members and staff.
The members of the HCT are: Aston Bloom, Bob Gordon, Burt Meek, Carolyn Cooper, and Marsha Newcomb. If you experience a conflict with another member and want assistance engaging in this conflict in a healthy way, you can reach out to any of these team members directly.
Also, SAVE THE DATE! We will be holding an all-congregationHealthy Congregations Workshopon Saturday, March 21st.
More information will be available as that date gets closer. Mark your calendars now!
TBIRDS Potluck and Sign Up!
Winter members + Visitors share
a 6 p.m. meal Monday 12/9 in Goddard.
TBIRD new member sign up forms are at Goddard Welcome Center. The Spring 2019 TBIRD Who’s Who Directory, posted on the UUCT website, indicates arrival and departure dates, two addresses, and identifies personal interests for joint activities with others at UUCT, such as books, dining, theatre and volunteer service.
For more information go to:
Our Kitchen MinistryNeeds Help!
Kitchen crew will now be serving lunchonly on 2nd Sundaysdue to lack of volunteers.
Sign up to join kitchen ministry on the polka dot bulletin board by the kitchen.
Please remember we need enhanced donations to keep this going forward and still need kitchen volunteers.
Social JusticeCorner - Cafe Justo
The Coffee Committee will be offering holiday gift bags for sale to include a bag of (fair trade, certified organic, sustainably grown) Café Justo coffee and a UUCT-branded coffee mug.
For more information, contact
Kate Schleinkofer or Sue Watts at
Saturday, January 4th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Goddard Hall.
The New Year brings hopes, fears, and so many questions. This New Year join me, Wendy Annis, for a collage class filled with fun, relaxation and maybe some answers to your coming year.
You will make two unique and personal cards which will explore your inner self and nourish your soul.
The $15 fee (sliding scale) includes lunch and all supplies.Also, please let me know if you have any dietary restrictions.
Let's get together and start 2020 with creativity, reflection, and friendship!
Please RSVP to Wendy at:
Support UUCT by Shopping
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Go to smile.amazon.com
to learn details of this program and sign up to support UUCT.
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Not 'in' to Amazon?
for practical and unique items designed with our interfaith logo!
Tee shirts, mugs, cloth bags, and so much more (see below)! Great prices for YOU, and some cash for UUCT!
Speaking of Finances...
VP of Finance
There is good financial news to report for UUCT!
We have funded the repair of the Holland Hall fascia, front and back, thanks to a generous gift from Reah Barrows estate. We are in the process of redoing the repair of the electrical infrastructure that brings power to our buildings, thanks to a generous gift from the Leonards. And we will be able to fund at least two other projects from these gifts.
Our operating income and expense funds appear to be progressing as expected. The income comes in “lumps” (e.g., the trip to Utah brought in over $7,000 this month). And the expenses also need to be paid on a schedule (e.g. there are 13 payrolls and 12 months, so there will be at least one, usually 2 or 3, months that have three payrolls), so occasionally we have large expenditures when income is low, and vice versa.
In the four months of this fiscal year (July to October), our income was $143,085 and our expenses were $156,897. We expect those numbers to even out in the next two months. And you can help by keeping your pledges up to date.
The Finance Committee has recommended to the Board of Trustees that UUCT should consider some long range planning with respect to funding some major repairs yet to come, such as replacing the HVAC system in Holland Hall.
Have a great Holiday Season!
Sunday Morning Discussion Group
Join us for Conversation Among Friends, 9 a.m. every Sunday in the Servetus Room, UUCT Campus. Ronna James, facilitator.All adults welcome.
For more information call
What Is Waning
We all gathered for a really fun amulet making experience, it was so fun to create things together. Carrie led us in a peaceful and healing Repose ritual, and we left with stones blessed with all the compassion of Kuan Yin to carry us through the busy secular holiday season.
What Is Waxing
Our 2nd Sundayclass offering this month is Board Games! Join us on December 8th starting at 12:30 and going on as long as we want to go. We're meeting in the Servetus Room.
Pagan tip of the month
There are so many ways to celebrate the longest night of the year and the return of the light to the world. Some ideas:
o Burn a Yule log
o Make sun cookies and yellow foods
o Light candles and make wishes for the world for the upcoming season of light.
o Write your gratitude list and burn it as an offering.
o Donate your time and treasure to those less fortunate and bring your light to others.
o Party with SAZCUUPS!
Southern Arizona CUUPS: A Chapter of the Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans
Mail: Southern Arizona CUUPS c/o UUCT, 4831 E. 22nd Street, Tucson, AZ 85711
Membership Team Report
Sunday, December 8, UUCT will host a Newcomer Recognition Ceremony during church services to recognize the 42 individuals who have joined or rejoined our church since last April.
This ceremony provides the congregation the opportunity to welcome these people into our church, promising them we will support them and embrace the talents, contributions and humanness each bring to us. New members at the ceremony will receive a formal recognition from our congregation as they commit to support the Covenant and Principles by which our congregation strives to live.
Please welcome five new members of our congregation in October, as follows: Sue Watts, Arthur Mitchell, Charlene Fitzpatrick (reinstated), John Leet and Jayne Leet. The church had one resignation this month, bringing the church's membership to 277. The next opportunity to join the church will be Sunday December 15.
If you are a long standing member, remember to use 'Radical Hospitality' principles to welcome new members and guests to UUCT.
Tucson UU Younger Adults(TUUYA) Meet Ups
Do you identify as a young adult (generations X, Y, or Z)? Would you like to meet up with other UU young adults? TUUYA regularly hosts events and meet ups.
There is POWER in thoseFlowers!
Do you enjoy the flowers on the podium
Volunteer to bring them!
Save the Date: NMD Fundraiser
February 13, 2019
No More Deaths/No Mas Muertes is excited to announce that critically
acclaimed author, Luis Alberto Urrea, is once again coming to Tucson to
host a fundraiser to support our work.
Mr. Urrea is the author ofThe
Devil's Highwayand 16 other books, which reflect his cross-cultural
experiences as a Mexican-American. Born in Tijuana, Mexico to an American mother and a Mexican father, Urrea is best known as a "border writer."
Mr. Urrea was recently named a Guggenheim Fellow and is a
distinguished professor of creative writing at the University of
The event will take place at the El Casino Ballroom, 427 E 26th Street,
on Thursday, February 13th, 2020. A reception with the author at 5:30 p.m.
precedes the main program, which will begin at 7:00 pm. Tickets are
currently available at
Grief and LossGroup
Every Sunday 12:15-1:15 p.m.
For those experiencing a difficult time after the loss of a loved one, a pet, a job, or any other significant loss, UUCT holds a Grief and Loss support group.
There you can find recovery in the caring and comfort of other church members (and friends) who are also grieving a loss.
Mata Ortiz Pottery Sale
Be part of the fight against 'Economic Injustice'
caused by the drug trade.
December 8, 2019
Sale and Pottery Making Demonstration
Do your holiday shopping next Sunday, December 8, at the UUCT annual Mata Ortiz pottery sale and you can cross some names off your gift list as well as help the potters of Mata Ortiz support their families. Recent State Department travel advisories have warned against travel to the Mexican state of Chihuahua because of the increase in violent crime and widespread gang activity. Mata Ortiz is located in Chihuahua, and without tourists coming to buy their pottery, their economy has taken quite a hit. That is why we at UUCT continue to invite our friends from the village to sell pottery here once a year. So come meet some of the potters, see how their pottery is made and buy beautiful art work for yourself or your friends and family.
Additionally, the potters donates a hand-thrown pot to the church, which we normally sell at our auction for the benefit of UUCT.
UUCT BOOK CLUB
The UU Book Book Club will meet Thursday, Jan. 23rd at 9:30 AM
Linda French. The group is readingThe Dutch House by Ann Patchett. Everyone is welcome to attend. Questions?
Last one in 2019!
Are you a musician, poet, storyteller, magician, dancer or other kind of entertainer? No? Well, do you enjoy live entertainment? Join us on thefourth Sunday of each monthin Holland Sanctuary.
A drumming circle is held at the same time
If you have a drum, please bring it. Otherwise, we will have some other percussion instruments to play.
Contact Bo or Sandy Ongley for details.
New! UUCT Creative Corner
This space is reserved for poetry, prose (one page, please) photographs, or a short commentary by YOU!
by Margo Garcia
In honor of the birth of a baby;
A new life, brought forth in love,
In joy and hope;
We give to one another gifts.
The gifts of material goods and
The gifts of our presence.
Lying next to each other,
In support and caring.
We bring the gifts of our talents.
Song and story, reason and logic,
To our family and community.
Creating the nurturing web
That holds us in place.
There are also the ongoing gifts.
Ones we so often forget to be thankful for;
The gifts from Mother Earth, Gaia,
The soil and the plants that feed and clothe us.
The fungi and hard-working ants that eat debris so there is room for new growth.
The sun from which our energy flows;
The awe of dark starry skies that remind us
Of our place in this universe.
Thank you, newborn baby.
Thank you, Mother Earth.
Thank you, Great Sky Spirit.
We are grateful for all that we receive.
Save the Date!
TiHAN ChristmasDinnerWednesday December 18!
We've been a busy group this year and
our last activity of 2019 is the TiHAN Christmas dinner. It is a very special event for TiHAN clients as it is a dinner/dance, unlike the monthly lunches. We are seeking six (6) volunteers who are wiling to set-up, serve, have fun, enjoy the music, clean up, and share a deliciously prepared meal, in service.
If you are willing and able please contact
NEW: Our monthly meetings are changed from the second Sunday to accommodate Second Sunday opportunities. We now meet theTHIRD Sundayfrom 12 - 1 p.m, in the Blackwell room. Next meeting, December 15.
All are welcome!
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Remember their names...
Transgender Day of Remembrance
In the United States alone, 22 known transgender and gender non-conforming individuals — almost all of whom were Black trans women — were tragically murdered this year. Targeted because of their identities in what the American Medical Association is categorizing as an "epidemic," each of these souls were robbed of their right to exist. In a world that far too often singles out transgender people, it is our duty to remember those lost - and do everything we can to ensure more are not claimed by violence.
Here are the names of those we know we lost this year:
Michelle “Tamika” Washington.
Denali Berries Stuckey.
Pebbles LaDime “Dime” Doe.
Bee Love Slater.
Jamagio Jamar Berryman.
Brianna “BB” Hill
In the "Last But Not Least" Column...
The weather is cooler and the landscaping team is in action again. Please join us. We are looking for a few folks to volunteer to care for specific areas of the campus. The work would involve raking, hula hoeing and weeding your assigned area. In addition, we need a couple people to water our drought thirsty trees in the parking lot. You would work on your own schedule with tools provided by the church.
4831 E 22nd St Tucson AZ 85711 520.748.1551