As winter reminds us once again of nature’s power and glory, I am counting my blessings.
First, for our abundantly beautiful shared ministry, proven in so many ways, but especially by the fabulous multigenerational weekend we just shared. Friday night was the culmination of six weeks of getting to know our younger and older pen pals, topped with a shared dinner and dessert at SUUS in the sanctuary. It’s a great experience! We have 35 children (and their parents) in our midst. We need them and they need us.
Thank you to the adults, children, and parents who participated, and to Nate Pawelek who helped us connect to each other. Relationships and memories were created.
On Saturday evening we saw 19 acts at our Talent Show. Again, this was only possible by the many who stepped forward to offer their gifts of talent and organization to us, ranging from the harmoniously beautiful to the hilarious!
Thank you, to all of you, who helped pull the Talent Show together. A special thanks goes to those (especially our rehearsal directors) whose patience and persistence made possible the outstanding performance offered by our children and cast who sang the SEUSS performance of “Oh, the Thinks You Can Think!” Mike Rosen also deserves a special thanks for his creativity in writing the SEUSS inspired Board of Trustees skit, assisted by Sue Rosen in her alter ego, Hortense.
On Sunday, we learned about ants and rams, to the backdrop of some great music. Afterwards, we had a town meeting where we counted our blessings and named in gratitude some of the reasons this congregation is worthy of our time, talent and treasure.
As I write this, I worry about who I am leaving out? No one is left out of my heart.
A few weeks ago I offered a sermon that highlighted a quote by John McKnight, community organizer, who said, “A weak community is where many people don’t give their gifts.” If ever there was any doubt, this is no weak community. Those who persist in the good and tough times have and exude a resilience that is contagious to long term and new members. We count on each other. This is no weak community. It is strong, vibrant, and has that thing that is most important, a truly shared ministry. I am grateful for this shared ministry. No one person can sustain this congregation. Together, in the spotlight or behind the scenes, we all do. A strong community is where many people give their gifts.
As Spring approaches, let us receive and offer our blessings to one another. There is nothing more important than the generosity of spirit we offer each other and the larger community.
With love and gratitude,
Congratulations to all the participants of the Talent Show last Saturday! Especially, hats off to the children and adults who participated in the Seussical Song, “Oh the Thinks You Can Think.” Thank you Karen Pawelek, Linda Pawelek and Steve Ernst for helping us to prepare for this performance. You all did a spectacular job, and it just shows that we are ready for a musical at our church! Anyone want to volunteer?
Thank you to all the secret pen pals, who are no longer anonymous to each other. We had 13 pairs of pen pals this year, who are now friends. We’ll do it again next year!
The annual church Passover Seder dinner is fast approaching. Our guest leader this year is again Jennifer Silva. Please join us for this family-friendly event. Look for sign-up sheets. Please plan to bring some food. (Food suggestions are listed on the sign-up sheet.)
Religious Education Schedule
March 25: Religious Education classes.
March 30-31: YSOP (Youth Group service trip to New York City)
April 1: Easter Sunday. No Religious Education classes this day. “Sunrise” service on the beach at 8:30am, followed by breakfast and a multigenerational Worship Service back at the church. The SUUS Orchestra will perform Godspell’s “Day by Day.” If you want to play, let me know SOON and I’ll arrange a part for you!
April 6: Annual Passover Seder, 6pm. Families with children are welcome. Look for a sign-up sheet in the coffee hour space.
April 8: Religious Education classes resume.
April 15: Religious Education classes
April 22: Religious Education classes
Nate Pawelek, DLRE
Join Us in Guilford as part of a national movement in support of promoting common sense gun reform legislation in America. SUUS members – wear your SUUS t-shirts or Standing on the Side of Love shirts. We will meet at the southwest corner of the green (Peace Alliance weekly vigil spot). Help us March for Our Lives!
This is a matter of public safety. It pertains to safe passage in our schools, churches and places of worship, theaters, parks, stores, malls, and on Main Street within every town and every city in America.
Put on some comfortable shoes, make a sign that you can carry, and come join us as we try to make our communities safer for our children, our children’s children, and for ourselves.
Pledge packets were distributed or mailed to everyone this week. Please take time to review all the materials, as important information is included that needs your attention. You can also access the information by clicking here . We are asking everyone to take a leap and increase their pledges by 10% so we can become more sustainable by reducing our draw on the Endowment. For some, this will be easy, for others, not so much. Please know that every pledge is accepted with gratitude and joy. As Rev. Jeanne has said, “I ask you, plead with you, encourage you, and nudge you this year– please pledge to that which brings you joy. This congregation will only thrive on what we each joyfully give. Let that be our standard of giving”.
We also want to hear from you about how SUUS is doing, what it means to you and your family. Some of you will be contacted by our visiting stewards and others are invited to attend focus groups being held on Sunday, March 25 and April 8 after coffee hour. Some of you may do both. These conversations will be shared with our board and minister to help guide the planning of the year to come.
At this time I want to thank the following for their pledges: Dan & Linda Brill, Jennifer and Scott Swenson, Maryann Bracken, Jennifer Farmer-Etzel, Mary Strieff, Barb & Jim Francese, Jenny and Tom Lee, Jere Armen, Neil Schultes and Martha Howard, Rev. Jeanne Lloyd and Bob Hard.
Thanks to everyone who organized, cooked, contributed, attended and shared their talent on Saturday night for the SUUS Pledge Drive! It was a fabulous night! What a talented congregation – storytelling, beat boxing, pianists, skits, singing and crooning, fish cleaning, tap dancing, rapping, a puppet show, corny jokes and so much more!
Photos of the SUUS Pledge Drive
“Generosity doesn’t depend on how much you have, but on how much your are willing to share.” Mark Ewert, The Generosity Path
SUUS is a donation drop-off point for the Guilford Youth Feminist Alliance, who supply feminine products to homeless and domestic violence shelters.
A donation container is in the lobby and another on the front landing through the end of the week. Please be generous! Next month we will resume our “It’s That Time of Month Again” which supplies feminine and health products to our shoreline food pantries.
Please join us for our Early Morning Easter Beach Service on April 1st in celebration of Mother Nature and the Earth. SUUS Easter Services will be held at the Madison Surf Club starting promptly at 8:30am – 9am. We will gather at the flag pole.
The celebration continues back at SUUS for a carry in breakfast at 9:15 followed by our Easter Multigenerational musical service.
Help make our morning together special and sign up on the form below to bring something for breakfast!
Please contact Tracy Ernst if you have any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or
In Sweden in the early 1900s, “Everlasting Moments” chronicles the life of Maria Lawson (Maria Heiskanen), an immigrant from Finland who uses a camera she wins in a lottery to document her life. Maria works with her camera to support her children while tolerating frequent abuse from Sigfrid (Mikael Persbrandt), her womanizing and alcoholic husband. Maria’s daughter Maja, who vividly presents her mother’s strength and dignity in the face of considerable hardship, narrates the film.
Contact: Bill Stuart – email@example.com – with any questions.
In addition to the examples of food items listed below, this group really needs paper towels and dish/hand soap as well.
- canned soups, stews and ravioli
- canned fruit
- boxed mac & cheese
- crackers and peanut butter
- energy bars
We are helping a group of at-risk teens, ages 17-23, in conjunction with a organization called EMERGE in New Haven. SUUS members are tutoring and supplying these under-served youth with food, so they will be better able to learn. It’s hard for these kids to even think when they hungry…and many of them are “couch surfing” for a place to live.
Please drop off donations to the pantry box on the landing at SUUS!
Contact Barb Francese with any questions or call 203-421-4579.
On April 12, at 4 PM, the SUUS Book Group will discuss Colson Whitehead’s Underground Railroad. This received the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for fiction as an “alternate history novel“ and tells the story of Cora and Caesar, two slaves in the South during the 1800’s, who make a bid for freedom from their Georgia plantation.
The choice for May 10 is A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. This is the story of Count Alexander Rostov who was sentenced to house arrest in the Moscow Metropol Hotel in 1922. One reviewer called this a “masterly encapsulation of modern Russian history.”
The SUUS Book Group meets in the library at 4 PM on the second Thursday of the month.
Please contact Irene Roman at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Can you volunteer to do one designated job and add to the fun?
Food (traditional Derby recipes will be provided): Contact Kathy Helmrich, 203-483-4591, email@example.com
Entertainment & Betting: Contact Maryann Bracken 203-453-4032, firstname.lastname@example.org
Decorations & Supplies: Contact Alice Fleming, 203-208-1938, Fleming.email@example.com
Social Events & Activities Committee
As the Commission on Appraisal prepares to select a new issue to address over the next few years, we would like to have input and feedback from people in leadership to both expand and narrow the range of topics to be considered. The Commission’s mission is to provoke deep reflection and to evoke timely, creative transformation of Unitarian Universalism, our congregations, and the Unitarian Universalist Association.
Please take a few moments to respond to the survey questions. If you are answering as an individual, please enter 1910 on the survey.
Rev. Jeanne Lloyd
The Outreach Team announces that a series of video advertisements will be appearing on select web sites beginning March 19 through mid-April. The 30-second ads (called “pre-rolls”) feature Rev. Jeanne speaking a few lines from an upcoming service and inviting those viewing the ads to come visit SUUS on Sunday.
The goal: to reach out to the shoreline community about Unitarian Universalism and encourage visits to our website as well as Sunday services. You may view these ads on our SUUS website: www.shorelineunitarian.org/
In addition, this type of advertising enables us to collect numerical data on responses to these ads. This will enable us to evaluate the reach and point us to further outreach opportunities.
The Outreach Team thanks you, our SUUS members and friends for their ongoing personal outreach using their own SUUS experiences, along with the blue outreach card and the SUUS website. We especially thank our members Arlene Saffron for her advertising experience and connections; Cathy Ramin for her video expertise; Mary Strieff for her extensive makeup and costume know-how; John Porter for his erudite contributions to the scripts, and Rev. Jeanne, our Oscar-worthy video star.
The Outreach Team
Ellen Creane, team leader
Dear Ones All,
They say that if you want to make God laugh, make plans.
I believe that when we plan a worship service, try as we might want to do our best, we must also leave room for the Spirit to enter. A worship service that is too tightly controlled dulls the opportunity for spontaneity and creativity to touch our souls. If it’s too “tight,” it’s hard for it to find the crooks and crannies whereby the Spirit can enter our hearts.
If all that is true, then perhaps the Spirit found a comfortable place to enter our worship last Sunday, when I was speaking on sin, disabilities and community spirit? That’s what I was speaking on. But perhaps you were expecting something else? My apologies to those attending last Sunday if you were expecting what was posted electronically last week. Mysteriously, this coming week’s description was posted for last week’s description.
In addition, on Sunday, I had trouble getting a video to play during my sermon. Though I summed it up for those attending, I still think it’s useful to view in person. It asks the question, “What does it take to live to age 100 or beyond?” Go to this link for the answer.
What does it take to live for 100 years? These are the surprising predictors of a long, healthy life.Watch the full TED Talk here: http://t.ted.com/nMk9fKb
Posted by TED on Wednesday, January 17, 2018
So . . . if perfection is the enemy of the good and the Spirit is most comfortable where spontaneity abounds, then I’m pretty sure it found a home with us on Sunday!
Lest there be any doubt, our worship theme this week is called, “High Apple Pie, in the Sky, Hopes!” It will illuminate this congregation’s ministries, and the many ways we can apply them toward the future. It’ll be fun! Come join us.