Kairos March 29, 2022

Kairos                                                       03/29/2022

The Arians
April 3, 2022, at 10:00 a.m.
 Online and in-person 

Rev. Dr. Matthew Johnson
We begin a series on the theological roots of Unitarianism (and Universalism).  The Arians had radically different ideas about Jesus, power, the state, and God than what became orthodox Christianity.  We’ll explore their thoughts and what they mean for our lives today.  Caution: this may make you rethink everything you think you know about western history.
We will Share the Plate with Children’s Home & Aid
Children’s Home & Aid partners with children, youth and families whose potential is at risk to create hope, opportunity, and bright futures. All children, youth and families thrive in strong communities. For more information click here

Click Here to Donate
Happy Birthday to: Dan Hatfield (03/29), Dianne Stenerson (03/31), Ayo Carter (04/01), Kevin Fisher (04/02), Dan Wilkins (04/02), & Juliette Kula (04/04)!

Volunteers for Sunday, April 3
Ushers: We Need 2 volunteers
Greeters: Kathy Scarpaci & Teresa Wilmot
Guest Table: Rev. Joyce Palmer & 1 more volunteer needed
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.

Sign Up Here: https://uurockford.breezechms.com/form/74f73a

Thank you!

Matthew’s Memo March 29, 2022
The moral philosopher and ethicist Kwame Anthony Appiah published “The Honor Code” back in 2010.  It’s a fascinating book, that uses historical examples like slavery and dueling to discuss the meaning of honor, and how definitions of what is honorable can change.  One argument he makes is that behavior changes not when folks make convincing moral arguments (that something is wrong) but when “what is honorable” changes. 
For a long time, a duel was considered honorable.  But then it changed – and it became dishonorable.  The same goes, he argues, for slavery, foot-binding, and other practices. 
The meaning of honor is always contested.  I think one thing we are acutely experiencing now is that the meaning of “honorable” is very different in different communities, and mediated by political identity. 
For example, a right-wing activist might believe that “owning the libs” is honorable and that insulting or attacking others is showing honor to their values.  On the other hand, liberal communities define stereotyping and micro-aggressions as dishonorable, and will sometimes use shunning to enforce this code.  (Honor is almost always enforced through shunning.).  Another example is that a lot of people are finding that the Ukrainian President is behaving in ways that demonstrate honor – courage, steadfastness, and so forth. 
If we understand the debates about so-called “cancel culture” to be debates about honor – what is honorable, and how do communities enforce their understanding – it helps us make sense of why these debates feel so fraught.  We do not have a common sense of honor across many of our differences.  So that’s complicated, to say the least.
These thoughts are sparked by what happened at the Oscar Awards on Sunday night when comedian Chris Rock made a joke about Jada Smith’s lack of hair, and Jada’s husband, actor Will Smith, rose from his seat and slapped Chris Rock.  Rock knew that Jada Smith has alopecia, a hair loss caused by an auto-immune condition, and had made jokes about it before. Rock also knows that you should never, ever, make fun of a Black woman’s hair.  (White folks, please attend. Never make fun of a Black woman’s hair. Ever.). Personally, I found Rock’s joke, given the context, to be highly dishonorable.
The honor code of the comedian is highly contested. Some comedians say “never mock appearance or disability” while others say all “celebrities” are fair game.  The masculine honor code is also highly contested, both in general and in Black culture.  In some places (and throughout most of human history, actually), honor would demand that Will Smith respond with violence – to fail to do so would dishonor him and his wife. But other folks find that slap – resorting to violence to settle a conflict – to be the dishonorable act. 
What is the truth?  I don’t know. I generally defer on these kinds of things to the Black women I follow on Twitter, and they disagree about whether Smith’s act had honor or not.  (They agree that Rock was wrong to tell the joke in the first place.). Smith has issued a full and unreserved apology, so he has clearly come to the conclusion that his act was dishonorable, and I think he’s right about that.  There would have been ways to intervene that would have shown much more honor. 
So I will say finally that I think it is fruitful to use the lens of honor to think about not just this incident but about these wider questions.  What do you considerable honorable?  Why?  Where do you disagree with others about this?  How does your sense of honor shape your actions? 
If you haven’t read Appiah’s book, I recommend it.
In faith,
Lighten up!
Generosity Campaign 2022
It’s time to Lighten Up! To celebrate, to be joyful, to have fun, and to turn up our light as a church.  We’re about to begin our generosity (aka stewardship, aka pledge drive) campaign for the coming fiscal year.  We hope every member will attend ONE of the following events.  Each event is designed to highlight something fun and good about our church.  There will be a brief stewardship presentation at each event, but the focus will be on having fun and doing good together.  More information to come.  But for now, select one event and put it on your calendar. 
Celebrating Ministry!  Join UU ministers who did their internship with us, or were members here before seminary.  Guests include Revs. Morgan McLean, Phil Lund, Misha Sanders, Kimberlee Carlson, Jim Parrish, David Kraemer, and Nancy McDonald Ladd. On zoom at
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87473258510  Tuesday, April 12, 7pm.
Concert!  Join Music Director Tim Anderson for a daytime concert.  Friday, April 22nd, 12pm.
Our History Scavenger Hunt!  Begin at Ingersoll Centennial Park (Madison and Oak near downtown Rockford).  Follow the clues through our history and join at the Olympic Tavern with your completed clues.  Saturday 23rd, 3pm start. 
Write for Justice!  Meet in Deale Hall to write letters thanking Reps. West and Vella for their support of the Criminal Justice Reform bill and encouraging them and Sen. Stadleman to resist roll-back efforts.  Wednesday, April 27, 7pm. 
Wesley Willows Happy Hour!  Meet on the driveway at the home of Myrna and Dick Lake. BYOB. Contact office if you need address. Friday, May 6th, 4pm.
Woods and Prairie at the Church!  Meet in the parking lot to hike our woods and prairie with a naturalist guide.  Saturday, May 7, 2pm.
Ice-cream Social! We’ll get an ice-cream truck.  It’ll be great. Sunday, May 15th, after church. 

See you at one of these events!
Your generosity team: Ruth Little, Wendy Bennett, Linda Johnson, Sara Dorner, Sandi Campbell, and Matthew Johnson

The memorials reception committee extends a grateful thank you to the following members who helped provide the reception after Ann Haub’s memorial service: Rebecca Beneditz (beautiful handmade paper flowers); Sue Garwick (set-up, serving, and clean-up); Larry Hughes and Fred Stillema (ushers); and Kathy Scarpaci and Judy Johnson (greeters).  Your help was very much appreciated.
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Path to Membership Class!
Unitarian Universalist Church, Rockford is pleased to announce the 2022 PATH to Membership Class will take place on Saturday, April 9 from 9:30 – 2:00 at UU Church, Rockford. Library. Rev. Matthew, Rev. Joyce, and members of the Membership Team will provide an overview of the church and ways to connect. Come out and meet other newcomers and get your questions answered.

When: April 9, 9:30 – 2:00
Where: UU Church Rockford Library
Who: Anyone interested in learning more about Unitarian Universalism, membership, and meeting other exciting newcomers

Questions? Email Rev. Joyce Palmer 

UU Passover Seder on Good Friday, April 15, 6 pm
Share in a UU Rockford tradition—a Passover Seder—complete with ritual foods and ancient words of freedom, in a family friendly community.  Bring your children, who have their own traditions to share.
A 5-course meal ends the Seder.   In our version, everyone shares the tasks.  Sign up to either set up, arriving at 5 pm; serve food; or clean up after the celebration ends.
The cost includes the meal and Jewish ritual foods, which are purchased in Buffalo Grove. Sign up in the Narthex, call Autumn at (815) 398-6322, or email the office by Sunday, April 10th.  Note if you want the vegan option.
Adults                                            $ 12
Children over 10                             $   6
Children over 5                               $   3
Family Maximum Cost                     $ 30
If you’ve never shared a Seder, make this the year you join our community’s celebration.
To order via email, copy this form:
          Name (for Family)_________________________________________
          Number of adults _____ Children over 10_____ Children over 5 _____
          Number of vegan meals ______.
          Choose one from:  Set-up ____   Serve _____  Clean-up _____
And email to: uurockford@gmail.com
Submitted by Teresa Wilmot

 Pickleball lessons for beginners!
Our UU pickleball group invites you to come at 1:00 on Thursday, March 31, and Tuesday, April 5.  Depending on the weather, will be either at Sports Factory or at Sinnissippi.  Send Autumn office@uurockford.org your e-mail to register.   
Click Here for Literature Link from Dale
Click Here for Teresa’s Tablet
Click Here to view Ministers and Staff: Duties, Hours, Contact
Social Justice Updates
Eliminate Racism 815

Book Discussion  
Thursday March 31, 2022  6:00 p.m.
Join us by zoom for a discussion of Chasing Me to My Grave: An Artist’s Memoir of the Jim Crow South by Winfred Rembert. Rembert grew up in Georgia & joined the Civil Rights Movement as a teen-ager and was arrested after fleeing a demonstration. At age of fifty-one Rembert started drawing & painting scenes from his youth of Civil Rights Movement & chain gangs using leather tooling skills he learned in prison.
Please read the book on your own and we will discuss it. 

Join the Zoom Meeting here: 

Book discussions are presented in partnership with Rockford Public Library.
Community Events

Najda Scutt’s beautiful magnets will be on sale on April 1 at Inscape Collective with all proceeds going to Ukraine. The Fools and Fibs performance in our Community Room promises to be funny and all proceeds from it will also go to funds for Ukraine! Tickets at http://www.tirandora.com. Do join Shiraz and others for a great way to support a new social enterprise in town by shopping local and enjoying a fun event!

Good Afternoon Rockford Area Habitat for Humanity Partners, 

While it feels like the year has only just begun, we are already gearing up for our 2022 construction season which kicks off this May. In 2021 we built homes for six families and that is thanks to our volunteers and community partners like yourself. This year we are doing it all again and adding one additional home to the count, bringing us to building home for seven amazing families. Yes, SEVEN! We can’t believe it either.  Rockford has shown us year after year that you are willing to support us and adding an additional home to the roster is only possible because of you. We have said it many times in the past and will continue to remind you that we are beyond grateful and blessed to have the community supporting us, so together, we can continue to build hope one home at a time. 

This year we are looking for even more community support to fill roughly 80 build days. While that may sound intimidating, we know it is a request our community will fill. So, what exactly am I asking of you today? Sign up NOW for your 2022 build day. Come swing a hammer with us starting THIS May with your business, family, church, club or as a friend group. No experience, no problem! We have a group of talented house leaders to lead you through the day. All you need is a willingness to learn, work, have fun, and likely shed a little sweat.

CLICK HERE to take a look at our building schedule and read a bit more about what exactly a build day looks like. Have questions or concerns about volunteering? Reach out to me and we can discuss more. 

We are counting down the days until we kick-off this year’s construction season and we cannot wait to do it alongside our community,

Greta Sanders, Volunteer Manager

Rockford Area Habitat for Humanity

5183 Harlem Rd. Suite 3 | Loves Park, Il 61111

Office: 815-636-4573

Unitarian Universalist Advocacy Network of Illinois

Every American citizen is provided legal counsel in court.  In most cases legal counsel enables you to communicate effectively with the court. Often it is life-saving.

It has long been the case that immigrants have a right to legal counsel as well, as long as they pay the bill for private counsel. But immigrants faced with immigration court do not have the right to government-appointed (and supported) counsel [more info here].  A lack of legal counsel demonstrably leaves an immigrant without understanding or recourse in deportation proceedings.

SB3144 provides for developing a plan for universal representation for individuals in immigration removal proceedings.

SB3144 has moved quickly through the pressure of ICIRR – it was passed through the Senate in a month, arrived in the House February 23, where Rep Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz has shepherded SB3144 through the House, with a recommendation DO PASS from the House Immigration and Human Rights Committee last week.  SB3144 will be heard for a vote this week.

SB3144 had strong support from the public in its committee hearings, although not so much from legislators.

TAKE ACTION to urge your representative to vote “yes” for a fair shake for ALL our people.

Partnered with Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights

Comments, questions, suggestions?  CONTACT US

The Board of Trustees: 
President: Amanda Tapfield          
Clerk: Bob Spelman
Vice-President: Judy Gustafson     
Treasurer: Teresa Wilmot 
Trustees: Khanh Oehlke, Sarah Greer, Jami Edmonds
The Unitarian Universalist Church, Rockford, IL  |   4848 Turner St., Rockford, IL 61107   |   815-398-6322    |   uurockford.org  |
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