Kairos August 15, 2023


Kairos                                                       08/15/2023

Loud and Proud: Taking Unitarian Universalism Seriously Part 1
August 20, 2023, at 10:00 a.m. Online and in-person 
Rev. Dr. Matthew Johnson
“Put it under a bushel? No!”  — and yet we are often reticent, for good reason, to be loud and proud about our faith.  Many have been harmed by proselytizing and supremacist faith traditions.  It’s hard to explain our faith.  Even when we do great work in the community because of our religious values, we don’t want to make a fuss.  The white mid-western middle-class culture is strong among us.  But in an age of neo-fascism, an epidemic of loneliness, and a search for real meaning in a techno-capitalist world we need to now be Loud and Proud about our faith.  I’ll give you tools and ideas about how to do this in a way that is loving and inclusive.  Bring a friend today! 

We will Share the Plate with UUANI
UUANI (Unitarian Universalist Advocacy Network of Illinois) was founded in 2013 and organized to build power among UU congregations in Illinois, in order to put our UU values into meaningful, concrete far-reaching action toward social justice. We work collectively with each other and collaboratively with effective partner organizations to influence the creation of meaningful social change toward justice, beloved community, and a healthy planet.

Click Here to Donate

Volunteers for Sunday, August 20
Greeters: We Need 2 Volunteers
Guest Table: We Need 2 Volunteers
Ushers: We Need 2 Volunteers

Coffee Hosts: We Need 2 Volunteers
Please note that if you volunteer for coffee host you will need to clean up afterward and run the cups through the sanitizer. Spitty and others are happy to help you become familiar with how to handle this easy job.

Sign Up Here

Happy Birthday to: Lukas Herrmann (08/16), Regina Brenmark-French (08/17), Rob Tapfield (08/18), Mychalena Magoon (08/18), Kevin Cole (08/20), Beverly Baxter (08/22), Marcy Davis (08/22), & Robert Spelman (08/23)!

Matthew’s Memo

Year 16 begins! 
I return today from vacation (it was fantastic) and am back in the office to begin my 16th year as your minister.  I am hopeful for this year together. We are ready to rebuild activities, energy, leadership and outreach.  We have great programs planned and ideas bubbling.  For example:
I will be teaching a class on “what’s really in the bible?”  You hear the bible get used as proof-text for all kinds of causes.  But what’s really in it?  Whether you are an ex-evangelical or have never opened the text, this class is for you.  It’ll be Sunday after church starting in October. 
We are starting a parent’s night out program, with the first one coming. up on August 24th.  Sign up today (elsewhere in Kairos). 

We have a great plan for Wonderful Wednesday’s this year.  I’ll be working with each Faith in Action team to plan the first WW of each month on their issue/action area.  And then Rev. Joyce will be planning the second one each month on a topic of spiritual or personal growth, or just good useful information.  Speaking of Faith in Action, we are really going to doing more with our new model to share how you can get involved in the work we are doing together as a church. 
I have some fun and meaningful topics in mind for Sunday and looking froward to working with Rev. Joyce and with Tim Anderson, who is starting his 20th year as Music Director, to collaborate on creative, heart-centered worship. 
We have a great board ready to think about what’s next for us as a church and how we strengthen our lay leadership and community.  We have our first in-person Auction planned since 2019 (please get your donations in today!).  Woodsong Nature School is fully enrolled, new folks are getting connected, and people are finding meaning and community in Soul Matters groups (join one today if you haven’t already – Rev. Joyce can get you connected). 
This is the time for you to jump in and participate.  Let’s go!
In faith,
P.S.  16 years is unusually long for a ministry, in any denomination.  You don’t always realize this because you are used to long ministries (Dave Weisbard was here for 27 after all, and he was the third longest serving!). It behooves us to think together about the ways in which you’ve adapted to my skills and shortcomings, and to attend to these things.  And also to celebrate and be glad at this long partnership.


Do you have a chalice you use at home? If you are willing to share, we are making a display of chalices for the display ledge in the sanctuary. The chalice has become an important symbol of Unitarian Universalism with an open meaning. For some it is a beacon of light illuminating their spiritual journey, for other’s it is the light symbolizing truth, and for some it is a source of comfort.

We will display chalices for the next two Sundays. Please put your name on the bottom, so we can make sure it gets back to you.

Memorial Patio Dedication
On Sunday August 20 after our church service, we will be having a short dedication for the newly renovated Memorial Patio. The Memorials Committee wants to invite all who are able to be there to participate. Rebuilding this space, dedicated to those who came before us, has been a labor of love. We hope that all of you, whether you are able to join us on Sunday or not, will stop to see the new patio and find a space of peace and memories.

The Memorials Committee

The UU Church Auction website – Auctria – is now open for donations! 
You may now self-post your donations through the link below. Donations will be accepted through Friday, September 1. 

Click Here to Donate
If you have any questions or need assistance in entering your donation, you can reach out to Katie Kerr at k.m.mutert@gmail.com.

We appreciate your support. Your generosity in the auction helps support the continued work of the church. Thank you!

Would you make a good coffee host??
Do you want to get to know other members better?  YES
Do you enjoy teamwork and conversation?  YES
Would you like to become more involved?  YES
Are your kids old enough to entertain themselves in Deale Hall?  YES
Are you worried you won’t have a clue what to do?  Yes
Don’t worry, be happy! We’ll teach you. Someone is always around to help.
You can choose to set up for coffee hour, clean up afterward, or both.
     For more info or to pick a date, look for me after Church. Don’t know what I look like?
Just ask the coffee host.

Submitted by Teresa Palmeno

The Zanzen Meditation group is meeting in the church library every Saturday from 8:00 am to about 10:00 am for silent meditation and friendly discussion. We would like to invite all who are interested to check us out. There is no need to sign up or commit to anything. If you show up and behave we will probably be delighted to have you join us.

Parents’ Night OUT!
Thursday, August 24th
5:30 – 8:00 pm

Treat yourself to a night out while we watch the kids!
Pizza – Snacks – Drinks – Movie
Donation of $5 Requested, NOT Required

Sign-up using this link by Monday, August 21st.

Bring-a-Friend To Church

Sundays, August 20 & 27
Rev. Matthew is preaching about Taking Unitarian Universalism Seriously in a 2-part sermon. Let’s share the good news of Unitarian Universalism with our family, friends, and neighbors!

August 20th after the service

Inline image
Please join us to reflect on Sunday’s service topic in a small group setting. What are your thoughts on the topic? What impact could the service have on your life?

Meets this Sunday and every third Sunday after the service in the library. No registration required.

Multicultural Ministries
Anti-Racist Cookbook Workshop
Saturdays, September 9 and 30 at 9am – 11:00am

Join members of the Multicultural Ministries group to learn about steps everyone can take to become more aware of the definitions and tools to use in everyday life to increase awareness and develop tools to have cross-racial discussions. The resource and conversations will help to address the question, “What can we do and how can we do it?”

Reading the book is helpful, though not required. We have a few copies in the office you can borrow, or buy one for $5.50. 

Rare Earth Food Collective
is an online farmers’ market featuring local food and products. We help producers work together to meet the growing demand for local, sustainable food in Winnebago, Boone, and McHenry Counties. Instead of you driving all over the countryside to buy from different farms, we collaborate to bring the food to you. You can choose home delivery or a nearby pickup location. We deliver orders every Tuesday, year-round. There is no minimum order, and no requirement to order every week. Ordering from REFC helps to build and support our local food community, preserve our agricultural land for future use, and reduce our carbon footprint. It also provides you with fresh food that tastes delicious and is good for you. 

For members who already attend UU regularly, we will be there on Tuesday’s in Deale Hall to pack our orders for distribution – meaning you could place an order for Tuesday pick up right at the Church! 

To register as a customer visit: https://refc.localfoodmarketplace.com/

The next pick-up will be on August 22, 2:30 – 3:00. This time period may be adjusted in the first couple of weeks.

The buying window on the website will go live with products (for shopping) from Saturday (the 15th) at Noon, until Noon on Monday the (17th), but you can sign up as a customer at any time!

We look forward to serving you!

Rockford UU Lunch Group

After coffee hour/meetings on Sundays, a group gathers for lunch at various locations. It’s usually Bob Babcock and Doug Rix, often with Sue and Scott Garwick. It’s a time to get to know each other deeper and form a better community. Tap any of us any Sunday and see what we’re doing if you’d like to join us. PLAN ON IT!!! Or Call Bob at 630.417.0042

Book Discussion
Wednesday August 31, 2023  6:00 p.m.
c387031b-1e60-1776-b9c9-00a5d8fcbd7f.jpgJoin us by zoom for a discussion of We Are Not From Here by Jenny Torres Sanchez: Poignant novel of desperation, escape, and survival across the US-Mexico border, inspired by current events. Chicago Public Library Best of test of 2020.
Please read the book on your own and we will discuss it. 

Join the Zoom Meeting here: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81211275487

Book discussions are presented in partnership with Rockford Public Library. 

Looking for a copy of one of the books? The Rockford Public Library is pleased to offer the books for our discussion series in multiple formats. In addition to in print, RPL has all but 2 (Intended: A Marriage in Black and White and Restoring the Soul to Education) in the Cloud Library which may be accessed with your RPL card.  Titles are available in audio and e-book formats.


List of resources that may be helpful to you or someone you know.

Family Peace Center – 1-779-348-7600 
Remedies Renewing Lives – 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline – 1-815-962-6102

Catholic Charities Long Term Care Ombudsman Program – 1-815-316-0040 or 1-800-369-0895
Mercyhealth at Home/Older Adult Services – 1-815-971-3502
Lifescape Community Services – 1-815-963-1609 or 1-800-779-1189 

Center for Sight and Hearing – 1-815-332-6800 P
RAMP – 1-815-968-7467 
The ARC – 1-815-965-3455 

Click Here for More Resources

Click Here for Teresa’s Tablet “Building a Life of Meaning”
Literature Link in Memory of Dale Dunnigan 07/11/23
Click Here to view Ministers and Staff: Duties, Hours, Contact

The Board of Trustees: 
President: Spitty Tata
Clerk: Kim Vollmer
Vice-President: Matt Menze
Treasurer: Steve Blomgren
Trustees: Clark Logemann, Sarah Greer, & Rebecca Beneditz

The Unitarian Universalist Church, Rockford, IL  |   4848 Turner St., Rockford, IL 61107   |   815-398-6322    |   uurockford.org  |





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