Kairos March 7, 2023


Kairos                                                       03/07/2023

das schlechthinnige Abhängigkeitsgefühl” / “The feeling of absolute dependence
March 12, 2023, at 10:00 a.m.
 Online and in-person 

Rev. Dr. Matthew Johnson
The “father of liberal theology,” Friedrich Schleiermacher (1768-1834), argued that religion begins not with creed, doctrine, text, or tradition but with feeling.  In particular, the feeling of absolute dependence (or the absolute feeling of dependence, depending on your translation).  We’ll explore vulnerability by looking at this feeling of awe, wonder, and connection.  How can we cultivate this feeling, and what do we do with it when we feel it? 

We will Share the Plate with Cornucopia Food Pantry

Click Here to Donate

Happy Birthday to: Lawrence Hughes (03/07), Marge Elliot (03/08), Shoko Chien (03/08), Joe Morton (03/08), Wild Darke (03/08), Mary Caskey (03/09), Bob Sharp (03/09), Ken Ring (03/09), Brian Gustafson (03/09), Madeline Arnold (03/10), Stephen Blomgren (03/12), Rebecca Beneditz (03/13), Pam Lonsway (03/14), & Lerryn Gough (03/14)!

Volunteers for Sunday, March 12
Ushers: Pam Wilson & Barb Wilson
Greeters: We Need 2 Volunteers
Guest Table: We Need 2 Volunteers
Coffee Hosts: Phil Hjemboe & We Need 1 More Volunteer
Please note that if you volunteer for coffee host you will need to clean up afterward and run the cups through the sanitizer. 
Reminder to coffee hour hosts: please make sure the heater is off and the machine master switch is off when you leave. Thank you!

Sign Up Here

Matthew’s Memo
March 7, 2023
A few of you have asked for my thoughts about the upcoming nonpartisan elections to the Rockford School Board and Rock Valley College Board of Trustees.  Because I’ve been deeply engaged in education policy work and because these are non-partisan races I can share my thoughts with you.  Of course, you should make up your own mind.
For RVC, I know both Magda Mohamed and Ricardo Montoya Picazo.  They are excellent people, dedicated to access and quality, with many wonderful connections in our community.  Magda actually has a M.Div. from Harvard (and an associates from Rock Valley), and knows many of my colleagues who studied with her.  I’ve worked with Ricardo for years; he is savvy and passionate about our community and education.  They share my values and I think they’d both be great.  You get to vote for two, so you can choose both. 
For RPS, four races are uncontested.  Those races – B, C, E, and G – all feature candidates I’m either totally fine with (G) and candidates I think are really strong (B, C, and E). 
In A, I think Denise Pearson has brought excellent qualities to the board.  She asks important questions about discipline, teacher recruitment, and student outcomes. I was surprised to see Lisa Jackson put her name it for a seat she stepped away from because she wasn’t able to regularly participate. 
In D, I know both Nicole Bennet and Jude Makulec well.  Both care about our students and are people of integrity.  After Jude’s 14 years on the board, I think it’s time for new leadership here, though, and I love Nicole’s passion for students. Our students are struggling, and Nicole brings a much-needed proximity to their lives and understanding of what they are going through.  I think it’s easy for the Board to forget what it’s like on the ground, and Nicole will keep real students in the forefront.  I’m a big fan. 
In F, our values could not be more at stake.  Kim Haley is well-qualified and dedicated. Her experience helping employers and students connect is a great perspective on the Board. She’s got solid values and connections.  Juan Reyes, on the other hand, is an opponent of all we believe in. He is opposed to inclusion, diversity, and respecting our students and staff.  He was fired from being a Rockford Park District police officer for planting evidence, lying about it, and for sexual harassment.  Later he was arrested for impersonating an officer.  He would be a disaster on the School Board, and both his views and actions make him unacceptable.  Given Kim’s excellence, this is a very easy choice.  You can volunteer for Kim by searching for her Facebook page and finding her next door-knocking day. 
My opinion on the RPS candidates is shared by the Chamber of Commerce and various labor unions.  If labor, the Chamber, and I all agree, that tells you a lot! 
This off-year municipal election is usually very low turnout, so every vote really matters.  It’s not unusual for these elections to be decided by 10s of votes, out of only hundreds cast in a subdistrict.  So, make sure you vote (you can early vote now) on or before April 4th
In faith,

Photo of the Week
Our theme this month is Vulnerability. We have bears from Rev Joyce’s mom, Andrea Baker’s collection, as a sign of comfort and companionship. 

Help Wanted
A one time limited opportunity to help the church. Sometime this summer, we hope to have a all church party and auction fund raiser. But, we need volunteers to:

  1. Plan a church event. A show, a wine tasting, a picnic, an art exhibition. Who knows. Run with an idea.
  2. Organize an auction. Recruit donors. Organize the bidding action. The auction software makes it a doable task.

Sure it is a fund raiser. But, it is much more than that. More than 100 members will participate in social events with other members. Members will get a chance to share their artistic efforts. Members will offer to help other members with some assistance.
If you want to help, or even to ask about what it might mean, call Steve Lewis 815-979-5901

Tuesday, March 7, 5:00 – 7:30 pm
RPL Nordlof Center
118 N Main Street

Community leaders are working to make Rockford a trauma informed community
where individuals who have experienced trauma are treated with respect and care.

An important part of increasing our capacity to care is learning how to identify and respond
to trauma. Join members of the community for a free training on the “Impact of Trauma on Youth”  
sponsored by the Winnebago County Health Department.

Registration link: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/icoy-presents-impact-of-trauma-on-youth-a-community-trauma-training-tickets-551742154637

Wonderful Wednesday

March 15 at 6 pm in the Library

Kim Lowman Vollmer will share tips, techniques, 
and resources for introducing native plants to your 

Come with your ideas and questions!


Sunday, March 19
After service

Are you wondering how to get involved at church?
Come learn about classes, groups, events and volunteer 
opportunities at the church. Come make a difference!

A UU Passover Seder
Join Rev. Matthew in Deale Hall on Good Friday, April 7th for our annual celebration of the Passover Seder.  Passover begins on Wednesday night, April 5th, at sundown and lasts until Thursday, April 13th.
This Jewish holiday celebrates the exodus of the Jewish immigrants from Egypt, their shelter from the drought in Israel.  Over the years, the Jewish people became slaves to the Egyptians.  The word, “Passover,” refers to one of the plagues that God inflicted on the Egyptians, when death “passed over” the homes of the Jews.
While this celebration is about a particular rescue from oppression, we UU’s remember other oppressed peoples, like the war-oppressed Ukrainians, the earthquake-suffering people in Syria and Turkey, and the people facing chaos in Haiti, Myanmar, and northern Africa.  We are constantly reminded of our privilege here in the United States.
Add April 7, 6 pm to your calendar.  As with most celebrations, this one includes a multi-course dinner.
Submitted by Teresa Wilmot


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

Social Justice

Film Discussion
Friday March 10, 2023 
6:00 p.m.

We will watch My So-Called Enemy: Diversity, Interfaith, Intercultural Understanding – A film about not creating an “other” presents the complexities of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, & the possibility & hope that comes from listening to each other’s stories.
Join us at the Baha’i Center 1650 N Alpine: Lower level in Highcrest Shopping Center. 
We will show the film at The Baha’i Center in person with a facilitated discussion after the showing of the film.
The film discussions are presented in partnership with The Baha’i Community of the Rockford Area and Rockford Public Library.

The 2023 Book and Film Series dates and titles
can now be found on our website here:  
Learning About Racism for a Change 2023

To register for “Rockford Summit on Racism” A flyer is attached with information about the Summit and how to register. 
It is easy!   Just go to the website EliminateRacism815.org to register!!!
Questions: Call Ann Rundall at 815-978

Rockford Summit on Racism Flyer

Click Here for Teresa’s Tablet “Ella Baker: Godmother of the Civil Rights Movement”
Literature Link in Memory of Dale Dunnigan 3/7/23
Click Here to view Ministers and Staff: Duties, Hours, Contact

Community Events

The Board of Trustees: 
President: Judy Gustafson   
Clerk: Bob Spelman
Vice-President: Spitty Tata
Treasurer: Steve Blomgren
Trustees: Sarah Greer, Jami Edmonds, & Rebecca Beneditz

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





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