Horizons newsletter - Unitarian Universalist Church in Idaho Falls

Horizons newsletter
Our Vision
Universalist Church in
Idaho Falls is a vibrant
and welcoming church
home for everyone.
With a tradition of
thoughtful searching,
we are a beacon of
truth, love and justice.
Our Mission
Honor the individual’s
right to religious and
spiritual freedom
Minister to each other
and the community at
Nurture the search for
truth and meaning
Be a loving and
community welcoming
to all beliefs, races,
sexual orientations,
ethnicities and gender
Improve the quality of
life by living our values
and working for local
and universal justice
Our Covenant
Love is the spirit of
this community and
service its law. This
is our great covenant:
To dwell together in
peace, to seek the
truth in love, and to
help one another.
March Worship
Sunday Services 10:30am
March 1
“Understanding Ornery and
Encouraging Good”
Saint Paul is credited with mourning
that “The good that I would, I do not, and the
evil that I would not, that I do.” What about
us? If we do not buy into a religious
description of “sin” then how can we
determine what it means to do or be “good?”
March 8
“In the Spirit of Selma”
(Daylight Savings begins)
We can be pleased that in 1965 the
marchers in Selma, Alabama were finally able
to get the attention and support of an entire
nation, and that UU people were willing to
participate in that struggle. Let’s explore some
of what we keep learning about the seeds of
separation and suspicion that remain.
This Sunday is also our Second Sunday Shared Meal potluck following the service.
Bring along a dish to share and join the fun and
2 0 1 5
March 15
“Gifts From the Irish”
Most of us have heard the many
myths crediting Saint Patrick with bringing
Christianity to Ireland, and sending away all
the snakes. Those stories are the basis for a
terrific holiday celebration in places like
Boston. But there have been other
contributions made and dilemmas faced by the
people of the Emerald Isle. Let’s explore the
contributions and impact of Celtic Wisdom
has offered our contemporary society.
March 22
“A Tribute to Pete Seeger”
A musical retrospective of the music
and life of Pete Seeger. Join our in-house
musicians as we celebrate one of America’s
premier activist/songwriters.
March 29 (Palm Sunday)
“Palms, Promise, and Passover”
According to the Biblical gospels it
was the Jewish festival of Passover that
brought Jesus and his followers into
Jerusalem. This Palm Sunday we examine the
hope and promise of the Jewish festival of
Our Home
555 E Street
Idaho Falls, ID
Our Mailing Address
PO Box 50376
Idaho Falls, ID
Our Web Site
Our Phone
(208) 522-8269
Our e-mails
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
Rev. Lyn Stangland
Office Administrator
Vic Allen
Director of Religious
Education and
Elisabeth Cogliati
Executive Board
Josh Cogliati
Liz Marsden
Daniel Schwen
Elise Durtschi
Larry Vanderplaas
Jeff Leuschen
Tim McConnaughy
Riverside Rev-flections
March is traditionally
when winter finally begins to
stumble off to be replaced by the
sprouting of a determined
springtime of moisture, mud and
the return of green. This year
though, things might be very
different. This February seems to
be ending its reign as the warmest
one on record. We have had little snow.
Our trees and gardens are beginning to look
as though they are ready to
skip March entirely. And our
friends back in the thicket of
UU- those areas along the
eastern seaboard where UU
churches are commonest,
(some only a mile or so apart)
have for weeks been literally
buried in snow and ice and
frozen by colder than ever
It would appear that
this winter’ s crazy weather
has had at least one positive impact
however; even climate change deniers seem
to be ready to acknowledge that this has
been an ominous sometimes frighteningly
unpredictable season. And while lowered
costs at the gasoline pumps are welcomed
by all of us, the gas and oil industries and
the boom towns in our neighboring states
have been sent reeling as a result. They
have seen quick reductions in jobs; leaving
people and communities wondering about
their futures. In other words -it may feel
like changes, some of them quite
frightening, are happening faster than
ever - and the future may seem even more
unpredictable than ever.
So what can we do --what’s a
congregation to do when the very earth and
economy; our human lifelines, seem to be
changing quite drastically and very
quickly? In some religious communities
now would be the time to dig in and call for
support form above -- and for some of us
that may be a comforting strategy. For others
in our UU community, however, now may
just be a fine time to reevaluate our priorities
and examine our plans. Now may just be the
best time for us to realign our priorities, to
rethink some of our choices and to make
changes in our personal and church lives that
will better reflect our ever maturing Unitarian
Universalist values.
On March 22, (our Sunday service
closest to the Spring Equinox,) we will
celebrate International Water Day and the
music and life work of singer song-writer,
and human and earth-rights
activist Pete Seeger. And
following that service (and
after the time it takes to grab a
cup of Joe and a snack,) we
will gather to organize our
creativity, commitment and
passions to embark on the
process of becoming
recognized as a UU Green
Sanctuary. The Green
Sanctuary program offers us
more than a “designation”-- it
will also provide us with a framework
around which we can educate ourselves while
we strengthen our personal and
congregational commitment to living more
sustainably and to better address the fears and
anxieties that are rampant in our world.
When I was in California I was
again reminded of the insidious ways that
what seem to be simple choices can affect
entire inter-related life systems. Watching
those Monarch butterflies and realizing just
how threatened their existence is by decisions
made by farmers and gardeners all across the
nation has given me pause. As the spring
time creeps into view let’s see how we might
welcome changes; changes that bring more
life-affirming behaviors to the ways we do
worship, to our religious education programs, and to the ways we occupy this odd
but beloved old building. Let us welcome
this transitional season and rejoice as we
enjoy the longer daylight hours! Blessings,
Rev. Lyn
“As spring time
creeps into view
let’s see how we
might welcome
Church Mouse
You know, we mice
have become so used to things
kind of perking along that when
change happens we get really
excited!! And I guess Rev. Lyn
must feel that way too. On the
Tuesday after she returned from
her retreat in California we heard
her crow - yes right out loud she
“whooped” she was so excited to see that the back hallway
had been cleaned out. She told Sue Wilde that moving the
tablecloths and switching the big shelf to the other side to
store the Yoga equipment has made that formerly
claustrophobic and messy area seem entirely more
hospitable! We hear they plan to remove all that useless and
ugly hardware and repaint the area - maybe make it into a
kind of gallery!
And guess what! She had a pretty good idea who
the movers and shakers were! Right away she called Judee
Stanley who confessed that she and Katherine Giovanna had
made the move. Of course we mice knew that! We have
been watching and listening as Josh and Katherine and
Michael Burns and Brian Durschi and others joined in a
“Building Walk Through” and a “Building Walk Around” to
begin to assess the structural and decorative needs of the old
mortuary, and we have been listening to people as they
discuss what can be done sooner without a bunch of money.
Last Sunday we also saw the Cogliatis take down
old bulletin boards; they are looking for a new location and
someone to update the material. Then on Sunday with
Lindsey Romankiw and her husband they removed the old
and moved in some different shelves. Word has it that the
old library materials from the downstairs Yoga room will be
coming up to join the other library materials..
So we are just waiting to see what will happen next!
Cleaning? Painting? Organizing? What a great way to get
ready for spring and to make way for the changes in focus
and programming that have been happening.
And we have been tickled to see that on last
Saturday mornings you have a new Daisy Girl Scout troop
meeting in Fellowship Hall. What a treat to hear girls
squealing and to see people enjoying the space! We learned
that Lydia Wolfe is a professional Girl Scout, so I guess you
now have another person to come up with great activity
We hear that because it has been so dry and mild
Jeff and Josh and the other board members cannot be sure
that their roof repairs really worked! Until there is
enough rain or melting snow we guess we mice and you
UU’s will have to wait. We sure hope that leaking and
seeping problem has been solved though; it was mighty
uncomfortable getting wet feet whenever we scampered
down the steps!
We wonder if anyone has said “Thank you” to
Vic for getting the new UUCIF directories out for the
congregation. Unless someone has done that job we know
they cannot understand how difficult it is to keep
everyone’s information up to date.
So Rev. Lyn has already seen a few tulip leaves
poking up through the leaf litter - and we have heard
people discussing an effort to make your garden more
sustainable and more native - maybe more water-saving.
So we will need to pay attention while some of you UU’s
get busy planning and ordering plants and seeds - this
may be a great spring with all that new energy and maybe
there will be some tasty new plants to sample! We sure
know that when March begins real spring is not far off.
Don’t forget that March 8 it’s time to “spring forward!”
We won’t. That’s a Shared Meal Sunday!
A Chosen Faith
Since becoming UU is often a choice made by
persons who may have spent years as “un-churched” or
within other faith traditions, we often gift our “New
UU’s” with a copy of “A Chosen Faith.“ which was
written some time ago by two UU ministers; The
Reverend Josh Buehrens and a favorite son of Idaho, the
Reverend Forrest Church. The book explains some of
what Unitarian Universalism means to them. Using the
book as a “jumping off” place our UUCIF people are
invited to join Reverend Lyn to chat about what it means
to “choose” UU. We also explore the ways that our UU
community reflects its diversity and all our creativity and
energies when we continue to mature and change in this
“ Chosen Faith.” Join us on the first and third Sundays of
each month at 3:00 PM. Some books available through
the office - call 522-8269.
Around UUCIF
A Walk Thru This Old Church
Rev. Lyn’s Office
Wednesdays 2:30-5:30pm
Thursday 10am to Noon
at Café Villa on Park
Avenue, downtown I.F.
Thursday 2:30-5:30pm
And by appointment
Office Administrator
Monday: 2:30—5:30pm
Tuesday: 2:30– 5:30pm
Thursday 2:30—5:30pm
DREE Office Hours
Thursday: 8:30am—11am
Thanks to Josh Cogliati who, in
response to issues regarding major repairs to
the building raised during our 2015 Annual
Meeting, invited members and friends last
month to an interior “Walk Through” and an
exterior “Walk Around” our building.
Inspired by both “walks” he has made
extensive notes, and photographed the attic
wiring! And thanks to a faithful group of
interested folks (Katherine Giovanna, Michael
Burns, Brian Durtschi, Arthur Kull, Liz
Marsden, Judee Stanley, John Tanner, Karen
Schafer and others) who made up the group
asking questions and poking into hidden
places, this ad hoc “Assessing the State of the
Building Group” will be compiling and
prioritizing a list of building-related areas of
The group with be gathering
estimates for important big ticket items like
roof replacement and up-dating wiring to
permit additional insulation, and will
determine which items on the list may be
addressed by our community members and
friends. They plan to determine the wisest
options for several issues such as the “out of
code” antiquated rod and tube wiring still in
use in the old building and how best to deal
with the crumbing brick work along the E
Street façade. All of us are urged to stay tuned
for future reports and to join this group as they
diligently determine how best to invest our
limited resources in maintaining our church
home, and as they may discover the need for
a future “Capital Campaign for Building
Repairs.” For information and to volunteer
please call Josh, 522-5752 or email him at
[email protected]
UUCIF’s Annual Auction
Our annual “Goods and Services
Auction,” our congregation’s always fun and
biggest fundraiser, is scheduled for Saturday
May 15 and we are looking for people to help
to plan and organize it.
It is quite an evening and has
evolved to have three parts. (Child care will
be available for families with youngsters)
1. A delicious dinner - - with beer a wine
available— tickets are sold in advance
2. A silent section (done raffle style so that
people with very limited means can enjoy the
process) People buy a number of tickets fill
in their name and phone number and place
them in containers in front of “items” like a
vase or an electronic gizmo— some thing
someone has donated - could be a gift
certificate or Basket from Great Harvest ( last
year Rev. Lyn “won” Canada Geese decoys )
The winners are then chosen randomly - one
year a featured item was a $200.00 gift
3. . The “Auction Event” which usually
features bigger ticket items - a vacation
weekend at someone’s cabin, a special dinner
at someone’s home, a service like
“rototilling your garden” or just about
anything you can think of - for a couple of
years Diane (our former DREE) and Rev. Lyn
took children to the IF Zoo and provided an
afternoon picnic “tea.’” And the Committee
is always open to new ideas too.
So Elizabeth Cogliati is willing to
chair but would love to have your great energy, creative ideas and input! First meeting
is scheduled for 6:30pm on Thursday, March
5. If you cannot make that meeting stay tuned
because there will still be plenty of other
March’s Calendar
3p A Chosen
4-5p Mindful
Sunday Shared
3p A Chosen
4-5p Mindful
5:30p Men ’ s /
Women ’ s Grp
Soup Kitchen
4-5p Mindful
5:30p Family
Fun Night
7pm Death
Soup Kitchen
4-5p Mindful
10a - 2p
10am - noon
Red Cross
Daisy group
Blood Drive
Visit These UU Web Sites
Sometimes it is easy to forget UU is an movement
that spans the world. We can find ideas, support,
information, and inspiration from our fellow UU’s plus stay
in touch with the larger movement by visiting the Mountain
Desert District web site at mdduua.org or the Unitarian
Universalist Association at uua.org.
If you have visited these sites in the past it is
worth your time to revisit them. Both sites have been
recently updated with easier navigation and better design.
You can find information about what other
congregations are doing, upcoming events, writings and
posts about UUism, and information about UU programs
like the Green Sanctuary program. Take a moment to
browse the sites. You will be glad you did.
REE Update
By Elizabeth Cogliati, REE Director
“Thank you
to Lindsay
and her
father for the
donation of
Contact DREE
(208) 403-1306
[email protected]
DREE Office
8:30 - 11am
Elizabeth Cogliati, DREE, will be out
of town March 10-14 for a district religious
education retreat & conference. REE office
hours are cancelled for that week. Sunday
classes will be held as usual.
REE has hired a new childcare
assistant, Grace Aldana. She will be assisting
Ashley Klink once a month in the nursery, and
serving as a substitute when Ashley is away. She
will be working March 2, and on subsequent 1st
We have bookcases for the new church
library space in the Book Table room. Many
REE books will be moving downstairs, so look
for them there -- they will be available for
checkout. The library will be in the process of
moving during March but everything should be
completed by the end of March. Thank you to
Lindsay Romankiw and her father for the donation of the bookcases.
March Family Fun Night will be
Friday, March 20, at 5:30 pm in Fellowship Hall.
We look forward to seeing you for board and
card games, pizza, and fun! There will be door
prizes given at the March Family Fun Night. We
have tickets to the ARTitorium to give away.
The 3-5 class is using a new curriculum
that may sound familiar: Chalice Children.
Chalice Children was in use years ago, but has
now been completely updated and refreshed and
the 3-5 year-olds are enjoying it very much.
We are always in need of volunteers for REE,
not just for leading classes, but for planning
classes, preparing for classes, and keeping the
space spruced up. Please see Elizabeth Cogliati
to volunteer.
Thank you to our February REE Volunteers!
Jatuporn Burns
Josh Cogliati
Brian Durtschi
Elise Durtschi
Carter Fox
Rhiannon Fox
Katrin Lepler
Liz Marsden
Maria McConnaughy
Daniel Schwen
Judee Stanley
Becky Taylor
Lorenzo Vega
Our Green
Early one morning last fall a small
group of people from this congregation met on
the Snake River Landing pier. That morning we
joined thousand’s of other 350.org activists
concerned about climate change in pledging to
make changes in our own locale. And so several
of us have determined that a first step may be
that it is…
Time to Become a UU Green Sanctuary!
A few years ago several folks here at
UUCIF urged us to begin work to become a
certified UU “Green Sanctuary” and now some
of us are ready to pick up where they left off;
ready to complete the program!
“The Green Sanctuary” Is program of
the Unitarian Universalist Association that
provides a path for congregational study,
reflection, and action in response to
environmental challenges. The “program guide”
now in its sixth edition, provides congregations
with information and strategies to help them
address sustainability, climate change and issues
related to environmental justice. Congregations
that complete the program are awarded
accreditation and identified as “Green
The program asks congregations to
examine their buildings and practices and to
learn about the ways sustainability and
ecological wisdom related to Unitarian
Universalism. Participating congregation
examine four areas:
Environmental Justice is the
understanding that those people and
communities most at risk from
environmental crisis events and climate
change are often impoverished and
already marginalized communities.
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Worship reflects the Seventh Principle and our UU
commitment to spiritual ecology.
Adult, Youth and Children’s Religious Education
Programs incorporate materials and focus on
themes related to our interconnection with all
Sustainable Living asks congregations to examine
the choices they make as individuals and as a
community and the impact these have.
So following the worship service on March 22
interested people are invited to join our “UUCIF Green
Sanctuary Team.” We will distribute information and
begin to plan the way we intend to use this UUA program
to make our own UU community truly a “Green
Speak To Maria
All of us are needed as we
adjust to filling the shoes of Marilyn
Watts (who for quite some time
faithfully organized - our “UU
Coffee Hour.) We all love that time
when we enjoy beverages and snacks
and conversation after our service on Sundays, but, it
requires some UU teamwork to make it happen!
Thanks to generous folks who bring pretzels,
cookies, fruit, cheese, and cupcakes we usually have
plenty of snacks! Each week Jeff Leuschen does a great
job of making the coffee and Bea Moyer has volunteered
to provide “coffee hour set-up and clean-up instructions,”
but we still need a person or a team of people each week
for set-up and clean up. Setting-up “Coffee Hour” takes
about ½ hour before the service to bring up dishes and
make the lemonade etc. Clean up takes about ½ hour at
the end of the social time to put things away, load the
dishwasher and wash- up the serving items. Most weeks
everything is done by about 12:15. Working together is a
great way to get to know one another and, if we each
volunteer for a couple of weeks each year, no one needs
to do it all the time!
To get things going, Maria McConnaughy has
offered to create a Coffee Hour Calendar, and keep us
scheduled for Sunday Mornings. Please make sure that
you see her to sign up for a couple of turns “Hosting”
Sunday Coffee Hours!
Red Cross Returns to UUCIF
Last summer UUCIF
proudly hosted a successful
American Red Cross blood
drive. So successful in fact that
we have been asked to host
another drive this spring. Now
plans are still being made we can safely say this blood
drive will take place March 27th from 10am to 2pm.
New this time we will have soup and bread
available for both donors and volunteers. Be sure to
note the date on your calendar and plan to donate or
volunteer now to make soup or help during donations.
Death Café Returns
Nearly 20 of us
gathered late in February in our
UUCIF Willard Room for our
very first Death Café amidst
bright colors, flowers, desserts
and beverages. A wonderful
surprise was the red velvet
“corpse” cake provided by Lydia Wolfe!
We welcomed youthful folks and those older.
Some were UU; many were not. The food was yummy
and plentiful; the conversation was stimulating and
informative. The tone was respectful but lively and at
the end of the discussion when more than two hours
had passed almost without notice, those in attendance
decided that they would like to meet again! So you are
invited to bring your friends and neighbors to the
“New” Death Café at the UU on Friday March 20,
2015 at 7PM. Though it is not required, if you would
like to help provide desserts you are welcome to do
that as well! Call 522-8269 with questions.
Mountain Desert District
Annual Meeting
The Mountain Desert District of the Unitarian
Universalist Association has announced the date for
this year’s MDD Annual Meeting. This year’s meeting
will take place April 10 - 12 at the Denver Tech Center
Keynote speaker for our Annual Meeting
will be Mark Ewert, author of The Generosity Path.
Buy Nothing Idaho Falls
By Rhiannon Carter
If you’re looking for a new way to reduce waste
and minimize your consumption while getting to know your
neighbors, the Buy Nothing Project may be for you. The
mission of the Buy Nothing Project is “to offer people a
way to give and receive, share, lend, and express gratitude
through a worldwide network of hyper-local gift economies
in which the true wealth is the web of connections formed
between people who are real-life neighbors.” I belonged to a
wonderful, active Buy Nothing group in my neighborhood
in Seattle, where I was lucky to share many things I no
longer needed, gratefully receive items that we did need,
and meet a community of generous, kind people. When I
moved to Idaho Falls last summer, I knew I had to start a
local chapter. In only a few months, the Idaho Falls group
has grown to almost 200 members, with more joining
almost every day. We’d love to have you join us as well!
Please check us out on Facebook: just search for “Buy
Nothing Idaho Falls.”
Unitarian Universalist
Church in Idaho Falls
PO Box 50376
Idaho Falls, ID 83405
Add The Words
Demonstrations Continue
The Idaho State Legislature
has repeatedly balked at adding the
words “sexual orientation” to the
State’s anti-discrimination ordinances.
The “Add the Words” demonstrations
are intended to pressure the Legislature
to do the right thing and add those
Our “Add the Words”
demonstration happens every Wednesday from noon to
12:15pm. We will continue these demonstrations while the
Legislature is in session or until the Legislature does the
right thing and adds the words.