By Julie Sapp, Volunteer Recognition Team member
“Please join us after the service for Coffee and Conversation” is an invitation you hear during announcements every Sunday morning. It is such an important part of hospitality and community building in UU congregations that Coffee Hour was included as one of the Sweet 16 options in the UUA’s March Madness vote for The Most UU Thing of All Time. (Lighting the Chalice ultimately won this on-line competition.)
Here at UUFA, it is the Hospitality Team that sets up every Sunday, makes the coffee, provides the treats, and cleans up after the Coffee Hour. This month’s Volunteer Recognition, led by Fellowship Cluster Lay Minister Ange Kahn, highlights the contributions of the Hospitality Team’s most dedicated volunteers: Jane and Bob Kobres and Sunnie Dempsey.
Sunnie started attending UUFA in early 2013 and committed to membership about a year later. She immediately noticed the need for assistance with the Coffee Hour and started to help right away. Her love for different cultures, and the coffees and teas they embrace, has added variety to the weekly offerings. She feels that people are naturally brought together for great conversation by the warmth and aroma of a good cup of coffee or tea. Personally, she enjoys spoiling the members, friends and visitors who attend the Coffee Hour each week, and finds joy in being able to serve the congregation in this capacity.
Jane and Bob first attended UUFA in 1980, with Jane joining as a member and Bob remaining a staunch friend of the Fellowship. Jane has a life-long love of baking and of feeding people. With an affinity for hospitality, Jane served as Potluck Coordinator for several years when UUFA was situated on Prince Ave. Then, for many years, the Kobreses visited the Fellowship only sporadically. In late 2013 they returned to the Fellowship and, enjoying the weekly Coffee Hour, Jane volunteered to bring baked goods on Sunday mornings. She supplies our spread with delicious, home-made brownies, cookies, cakes, and muffins, and appreciates that UUs are “good sports” when she experiments with new recipes. Bob, while not the baker, is always willing to hop into the kitchen and brew up some coffee when the need arises, and to clean up at the end of the day.
During our Coffee Hour we strengthen and renew our connections and welcome newcomers into our community. This is made possible through the volunteer service of Sunnie, Bob, and Jane and our other Hospitality Team members. Want to join them in brightening our Sunday mornings? Please contact Ange Kahn to volunteer.