- Who is my neighbor? Do you have a story? The title of the February 4 worship services is “Who is my neighbor?” The question is especially potent given the current discussion around immigration.
- Should those who were allowed to come as workers and students but who stayed without government papers remain among us?
- Should those who came illegally into the country decades ago to provide us reasonably priced food be deported?
- Should those young people who grew up in our schools and neighborhoods but lacked citizenship papers be required to return to the country of their birth?
- Should those who came under Temporary Protected Status in the 1980s and 1990s to escape war and environmental devastation lose their legal standing?
- What should happen to those people who are naturalized United States citizens but are now threatened with no longer being able to bring other family members into the country?
- What should happen to those who come seeking asylum for persecution?
Should everyone be our neighbor? Do you have an immigration story to tell that can help shed light on this question: “Who is my neighbor?”
If you have such a story you wish to share, you are invited to write a short narrative.
With your permission, your written thoughts may be shared during February 4 worship.
- Thirty Days of Love
- Announcing Side with Love! We are so excited to share with you that our new name, our new imagining, as the Responsive Resolution so beautifully called for, is Side with Love! You can also watch a video about our announcement here. Check out EqUUal Access’ take on the shift here.For more information, visit https://sidewithlove.org/ourstories/announcing-side-with-love
- January 19: Vigil and Rally
You are invited to attend the Interfaith Sanctuary Coalition Vigil that will be held in conjunction with the rally/protest led by Dignidad Inmigrante in Athens (DIA).Friday January 195:30pm-8:00pmCity Hall-Downtown AthensThe Interfaith Sanctuary Coalition has representatives from several local faith communities and works on the following:
- Cultivating relationships with undocumented immigrant families and individuals – this is the foundation of what directs us
- Supporting legal aid defense funding – ALCES and the Latin American Association
- Partnering with Community Support for Families in Crisis Due to Deportation/ Detention by providing financial support, becoming a Buddy, advocating for detainees, providing transportation, or becoming a temporary guardian
UUFA’s Sanctuary Movement Coalition is a member of the Interfaith Sanctuary Coalition.
Dignidad de Immigration is one of three organizations that make up the Athens Immigration Rights Coalition. The other two include U-Lead and Community Support. Dignidad de Immigration is operated by undocumented Clarke County residents and is thus unable to be funded through grants. The organization sponsors Latino Fest and, throughout the year, know-your-rights workshops for the undocumented. It also publishes know-your-rights posters that are publicly displayed. Most importantly, funds donated to Dignidad de Immigration are used to pay for an emergency phone hotline that helps alert the community to threats of detention. Dignidad de Immigration is the February 2018 Cause of the Month.
- UUA 2017-18 Common Read
TWO Books have been chosen for the 2017-18 Common Read
Daring Democracy: Igniting Power, Meaning, and Connection for the America We Want, by Frances Moore Lappé and Adam Eichen, (Beacon Press, 2017) lifts up the importance of democracy itself. It examines the anti-democracy movement that has led to the Trump presidency, then offers a vision and call to action to save our democracy and to take our civic life to a place it has never been.
Download the discussion guide.
Daring Democracy Book Discussion—first half of the book: Sunday, February 25, 12:30-2 p.m. (during the Fourth Sunday lunch) and/or Tuesday, February 27, 7-8:30 p.m.; second half of the book; Sunday, March 25, 12:30-2 p.m. (during Fourth Sunday lunch) and/or Tuesday, March 27, from 7-8:30 p.m.
Centering: Navigating Race, Authenticity, and Power in Ministry, edited by Mitra Rahnema (Skinner House, 2017), centers the stories, analyses, and insights of a number of Unitarian Universalist religious professionals of color as they explore how racial identity is made both visible and invisible in Unitarian Universalist communities.
Centering: Navigating Race, Authenticity, and Power in Ministry Book Discussion–Monday, May 7, and/or Monday, May 14, 7-8:30 p.m.
To register for the book discussions online, click https://goo.gl/forms/7o8vZwGr3Uvy30Mk1.
- Can you CANtribute?
As of September 30, UUFA is in FOURTH place in the friendly competition among the 25 faith communities who CANtribute regularly to the Athens Area Emergency Food Bank.
With our year-to-date CANtributions of 1423 items, we are 2570 items out of first place! 🙁
However, we are only 306 items away from third place!
Targeted donations for October include saltine crackers, rice, and boxes of instant oatmeal/grits.
The wicker basket as you enter the sanctuary is willing and able to receive your CANtributions.
Not a fan of shopping? Savvy Social Action Committee (SAC) shoppers will convert your monetary donation to nonperishable food items. See any member of SAC.
- Jan. 14, 2018, Interfaith Service for MLK Day
Join Rev. Alison Eskildsen and other area clergy and diverse communities for an interfaith service honoring the work and legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
WHEN: Sunday, Jan. 14, 2018
TIME: 5 pm
WHERE: First Baptist Church, 355 Pulaski Street, Athens
DON’T FORGET the MLK Day of Service and Parade
Jan. 15, 3pm.
For details click here.
- December 16: Visit to Stewart Detention
A few spots are open!
Join members of the UUFA Sanctuary Movement Team on a visit to El Refugio and Stewart Detention Center on Saturday, December 16.
El Refugio is a hospitality house located in Lumpkin, GA – right outside the gates of Stewart Detention Center whose purpose is to serve the family and friends of men detained and, thus, separated from their loved ones.
Click here to sign up.
For more information about this visit, please read the El Refugio Visitor’s Manual: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B-sojNRbRJ4wd0E0UWRZcm9NbDdyMGJhUnRMclN1X1hFRTM4/view?usp=sharing
Questions? Contact Chase White (email@example.com or 864.238.1870).
The Sanctuary Movement Team is part of the UUFA Justice Cluster.
- Justice Cluster Recognizes Active SAC Volunteers
In January UUFA’s Justice Cluster led by Karen Solheim is recognizing active members of the Social Action Committee (SAC). SAC is the oldest among the cluster’s groups and initiatives which include Our Daily Bread, the Interfaith Hospitality network, FREE (Food Responsibility and Enjoyable Eating), the Sanctuary Movement Team, and the Green Sanctuary Team.
Karen and the Justice Cluster are thanking individuals who have been active members of SAC in 2017: Chair David Jarrett, Greg Davis, Caryl Sundland, Ange Kahn, Connie Bruce, Carol-Lee Baker, Jean-Marie Buxton, Deb Brenner, Ed Helm, Julie Sapp, Barb Leissner, Nancy MacNair, Rick Fyock, Sandra Storer, Virginia Carver, and Adrien Helm.
The focus of SAC used to be on what its individual members were doing throughout the Athens community. SAC’s focus is now on initiatives sponsored by SAC in particular, and often by UUFA in general. Initiatives sponsored by SAC include activities such as the Smart Lunch Smart Kids sandwich making, the Cause of the Month Conversations, and the Share the Plate Program along with the Christmas Angel Project, CANtributions for the Athens Area Emergency Food Bank, and the Common Read Discussions.
The members of SAC do realize that many UUFA justice warriors who do not attend the monthly meetings of SAC are a part of this congregation as are many former members of SAC; the members of SAC value those who participate in justice work beyond that of SAC and also value the overwhelming support they feel they receive from the Fellowship.
Diane Bridges of the Volunteer Recognition Team worked with Karen to organize this month’s recognition.
- David Jarrett Honored as January Spotlight Volunteer
Congratulations to David Jarrett, UUFA’s first Spotlight Volunteer of 2018! In addition to serving as Board Chair in the early 2000’s, David has shared his knowledge with the investment and finance committees. He also organized Seder observances for many years and currently works with the Forum committee. For years he has served on the Social Action Committee, most recently chairing the group. The Worship Arts Committee has benefited from his leadership as a Worship Assistant and as a Worship Leader. In addition to presenting sermons, David also facilitates sharing services, often around July 4 and late in the year.
The Volunteer Recognition Team appreciates David’s multi-faceted commitment to UUFA!