Kairos September 29, 2020

Kairos                                                       09/29/2020
Centering, De-centering, Re-centering
October 4, 2020, at 10:00 a.m. (Online Only at 
Rev. Mitra Rahnema

Emotional Intelligence is about recognizing, understanding, and utilizing our emotions. One path toward this heightened awareness is centering, de-centering, re-centering our stories. Today we explore the work of centering.
Happy Birthday to: Ann Bowling (10/02), Myrna Lake (10/02), Khanh Oehlke (10/04), & Audrey Hart (10/06)!

Share the Plate with Justice for Our Neighbors

Northern Illinois Justice For Our Neighbors (NIJFON) provides free high-quality legal services to low-income immigrants, engages in education and advocacy efforts, and builds cross-cultural relationships.

Click here to donate.

Wonderful Wednesday, September 30th at 7:00 pm
Widening the Circle of ConcernWidening the Circle of Concern is the title of the report of the Commission on Institutional Change, formed by the Board of the UUA in 2017 to address an upheaval in the national association over racial inequity in the UUA itself.  Instead of sweeping it under the rug, the association confronted its racist behavior, committed to change.  This change isn’t easy, and it often means discomfort and conflict for white members, but, in the words of Arundhati Roy,
The trouble is that once you see it, you can’t unsee it.  And once you’ve seen it, keeping quiet, saying nothing, becomes as political an act as speaking out.  There’s no innocence. Either way, you’re accountable.
Join Omega Burckhardt, our intern, and me to discuss this report and its impact on our congregation.  The 228-page report is available, free, at:

One of the concepts we will discuss is Covenant.  For a UU vision of this concept, view this 3-minutes video from the 2013 General Assembly in Louisville, KY:

To access the ZOOM meeting, use this link, which isn’t the church’s link:


Meeting ID: 566 236 4814
One tap mobile
+13126266799,,5662364814# US (Chicago)
+13017158592,,5662364814# US (Germantown)
Submitted by Teresa Wilmot
*ZOOM Church Calendar*
Most “all church” events will be 337-267-3668. This is the Personal Meeting
ID for “Thomas Kerr,” our online identity (and the minister from 1870-1900,
who used all the new technology of his time to reach those he
served). Generally, there will be a waiting room and the host will need to
admit you. 

Coffee Hour on Sunday. 337-267-3668. 11:10 am. Matthew and Chris will
be hosts. 

Touchstones: contact your touchstones group facilitator for the time
and meeting ID, if you don’t already have it.

– Caring Team Meeting – The first Tuesday of each month at 6 pm.  ID 337-267-3668

Want to have a group – a book group, a parent group, a “circle supper”, or
whatever you like? You can create a free Zoom account (40-minute limit,
though often waived by zoom at minute 35). Or, you can use “Thomas Kerr’s”
– just email Autumn at
 office@uurockford.org and she can give you the login
and password.

B & G Update

The church parking lot landscaping is complete. The B&G Committee wants to express a sincere “Thank You” to all of the folks that helped to bring this project to completion. The folks that contributed their physical efforts, or financial support, all did an amazing job of seeing this through. The picture does not do credit to the island. If you can, please take an opportunity to drive by, or stop and walk around. 
DJ Schubert B&G Committee
Caring for Each Other

Times are tough for many in our church family.  You or someone you know may be dealing with illness, job loss, death of a relative or friend, divorce, loneliness due to isolation, overwhelming family responsibilities. 

The church’s Caring Team exists to help us care for one another at such times.  This group, which meets monthly, consists of about a dozen church members able to connect with you in times of need.  Our very capable staff liaison is Membership Coordinator Chris Ainsworth.  

Would you like to talk with someone who will:
Listen to your concerns?  
Take a walk with you or meet for coffee in a safe, socially-distanced space?  
Assist with food or transportation needs?
Reach out to a member or friend in a care facility as allowed?
Refer you to other sources for help if needed?  

You are welcome to contact the Caring Team through Chris uurockmembership@gmail.com our ministerial intern Omega osburck@gmail.com, or me.

Kathy Scarpaci, interim Caring Team leader

Donating to NPR
Do you count on Northern Public Radio as a trusted source of news, music, and entertainment? If so, you probably know that the annual pledge drive for the local stations – 89.5 WNIJ/NPR and Classical WNIU 90.5/105.7) – is underway. But did you realize you can contribute to Public Radio and benefit our church at the same time? Here’s how it goes:

Working together, we can pool our tax-deductible donations and enable the church to air underwriting messages (Public Radio’s version of ads) informing the community about our church, its programs, and events. Once you decide on the amount of your gift, write the check to Unitarian Universalist Church, with “NPR” in the memo line. The office will send one big check to Northern Public Radio, and soon listeners throughout Northern Illinois and Southern Wisconsin will start hearing about Rockford’s UU Church on their favorite radio programs.  

The result? Much-needed revenue for the stations and valuable publicity for our church. Questions? Contact the church office.  
Touchstones Groups

If you are feeling disconnected and missing your fellow UU’s, now is a great time to join a Touchstone group! We are starting up some new groups, some with old friends and some with new ones.
Touchstones Groups are groups of about 8-12 people who meet to explore the monthly theme. Some will choose to meet online and some will gather in-person to share insights, laughter, tears, discovery, and connection.  They generally meet twice a month, for 1-2 hours, depending on the size and group preference. 
If you choose to join a group, please plan on participating regularly through the Spring, in respect of your fellow group members.   

To sign up, please email Chris Ainsworth at

*New groups will be determined based on sign-ups.
Lit Link for Sept 27 about Rosh Hashanah and the Days of Awe 
Saint Martin and the Beggar , the painting by El Greco found here, 
depicts the saint, who lived during the reign of Constantine the Great, was a member of the imperial cavalry stationed near Amiens, in Gaul. Coming upon a shivering beggar near the city gates on a cold winter day, the young soldier divided his cloak with his sword and shared it with him. Tradition has it that Christ later appeared to Martin in a dream, saying, “What thou hast done for that poor man, thou hast done for me.”   Legend tells us that not only did Martin share his cloak with the beggar, but that when he did so, the clouds miraculously disappeared and the sun shone so brightly that the ice and snow was cleared, surely further proof of the holy status of St Martin. Here is a brief version of that story.
• One of the most powerful illustrations of grace in all of western literature has to be the great scene between Monseigneur Bienvenu and Jean Valjean in the stirring epic Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. Valjean then spends a life of atonement and charity to others.”Here is Chapter 12 of the novel where Valjean has his life changing event.
• Ring Out, Wild Bells,” a poem by Tennyson,  shows him regaining his faith and overcoming his grief when hearing the bells ringing—he’s ready for a new start.
• Bontsha the Silent | I. L. Peretz – first published in 1894, remains one of the most widely known, anthologized, and translated in all of Yiddish literature. 
Bontsha’s death makes no impression on anyone. He was not cared for, suffered many injustices, and lived in loneliness. He never protested his lot in life. While his death goes unnoticed on earth, it has the opposite effect on heaven.

In faith,
Dale Dunnigan
Social Justice Updates
Greetings Beloveds!
In collaboration with UUSC, Side With Love is offering an exciting new webinar series to deepen our collective activism and participation in the Movement for Black Lives. 
We invite you to participate in Taking A Collective Breath: Deepening our alignment with the Movement for Black Lives, a five-session series built around the elements of the BREATHE Act. The webinars will explore the components of the BREATHE Act and utilize its structure as a way to focus our energies to effectively support ongoing racial justice work. Come learn and build with local and national partners who are shaping conditions to make liberation possible. This is an invitation to locate yourself in this moment as well, we each have a role to play. 
The BREATHE Act seeks to reform federal laws and eliminate funding for federal programs that criminalize Black, Muslim, and immigrant communities, reinvesting our resources in community solutions for education, health, and the environment.

Next in the Series:

October 13 4pm PT/ 6pm CT/ 7pm ET 
Webinar 5: Holding Officials Accountable & Enhancing Self-Determination of Black Communities. 
Panelists: Minister Sheena Rolle, Deputy Director Faith In Florida; Nicole Pressley, National Organizer UU The Vote and Let My People Vote Campaign 

Please register now for these inspiring sessions.

I look forward to building with each of you! 

Choose Love, 

Everette R. H. Thompson 
Side With Love 
Campaign Manager 
The Unitarian Universalist Church, Rockford, IL  |   4848 Turner St., Rockford, IL 61107   |   815-398-6322    |   uurockford.org  |
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