Weekly Newsletter


High Country Unitarian Universalist Fellowship (HCUUF)
Weekly Newsletter: January 14-20, 2019
 
 
CONTENTS
• Sunday Services
• Upcoming Service & Social Time, January 20, 2019
• Everybody Can Serve
• HCUUF Pledge Commitments for 2019
• Touchstones Corner: Grace
• Teeter Totter Grace
• Touchstones Journal for January: Focus on Grace
• HCUUF Facebook Page
• Other News Sent under Separate Cover
• HCUUF Website
• Contact Information for Newsletter Announcements
• Contact Information for HCUUF
• Consulting Minister, Board Members, Committees, Musician, Staff
 
 
 Sunday Services
 
Our weekly Sunday Services take place in the Fellowship Hall of the Lord of the Mountains Church in Dillon, CO at 4:00 pm and are followed by a Social Hour or Potluck at 5:00 pm.  Potlucks usually occur on the last Sunday of the month. 
 
During 2018 we have had a short sabbatical during the months of May and October during which no services are held but other activities takes place from time to time.
 
 
• Upcoming Service & Social Time
 
January 20, 2019: Service & Social Time
Sermon Title: The Power of Protest: Learning from Martin Luther King Jr., and Other Prophetic Voices
Speaker: Lydia Wittman
 
I am here to acknowledge and represent the African American girls whose stories don’t make the front page of every national newspaper, whose stories don’t lead on the evening news. I represent the African American women who are victims of gun violence, who are simply statistics instead of vibrant, beautiful girls full of potential. For far too long, these names, these black girls and women, have just been numbers. I’m here to say “Never again” for those girls too.
Naomi Wadler, 11-year-old activist from Virginia: March for our Lives address 2018

            
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They thought that the bullets would silence us, but they failed. And out of that silence came thousands of voices. The terrorists thought they would change my aims and stop my ambitions. But nothing changed in my life except this: weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, power and courage was born.
Malala Yousafzai: address to the United Nations, 2013
 
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The tortuous road which has led from Montgomery, Alabama to Oslo bears witness to this truth. This is a road over which millions of Negroes are travelling to find a new sense of dignity. This same road has opened for all Americans a new era of progress and hope. It has led to a new Civil Rights Bill, and it will, I am convinced, be widened and lengthened into a super highway of justice as Negro and white men in increasing numbers create alliances to overcome their common problems.
I accept this award today with an abiding faith in America and an audacious faith in the future of mankind. I refuse to accept despair as the final response to the ambiguities of history. I refuse to accept the idea that the “isness” of man’s present nature makes him morally incapable of reaching up for the eternal “oughtness” that forever confronts him. I refuse to accept the idea that man is mere flotsom and jetsom in the river of life, unable to influence the unfolding events which surround him. I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality.
I refuse to accept the cynical notion that nation after nation must spiral down a militaristic stairway into the hell of thermonuclear destruction. I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality.
Martin Luther King, Jr: Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech, 1964
 
 
• Everybody Can Serve
            Rev. Kirk Loadman-Copeland, Consulting Minister
 
Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Everybody can be great, because everybody can serve. …You only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love.” His service was in leading the Civil Rights movement from the mid-1950s until he was assassinated on April 4, 1968 at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. A few months after the death of the civil rights icon, former Congressman John Conyers Jr. of Michigan introduced the first legislation seeking to make King's birthday, January 15, a federal holiday.
 
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change was founded later in 1968. It sponsored the first annual observance of King's birthday in January 1969, but it would take almost a decade and a half before it became a federal holiday. In the interval some states including Illinois, Massachusetts and Connecticut passed bills celebrating the occasion.
Three years after Conyers proposed legislation, the Southern Leadership Conference that King had led presented a petition to Congress signed by more than 3 million people who supported a King Holiday, but nothing came of it until President Jimmy Carter agreed to support the effort. Renewed lobbying helped, but the bill failed in the House by five votes in November 1979. Grassroots support finally began to grow and a new petition with 6 million signatures and the House passed the bill in 1980 with a vote of 338 to 90.
 
While there were difficulties in the Senate led by Republican Senators John P. East and Jesse Helms, the bill was also approved there and President Reagan signed it into law in November 1983. The first official holiday was observed on the third Monday of January 1986.
 
At the time, only 27 states and Washington, D.C., honored the holiday. Arizona did not vote in favor of recognizing the holiday until 1992. In 2000, 17 years after the law's official passage and the same year it pulled the Confederate flag down from its statehouse dome, South Carolina became the last state to sign a bill recognizing Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a paid holiday
 
The establishment of the holiday was followed by further deliberations about how best to honor King’s memory. The King Holiday Commission encouraged the practice of community service on King’s birthday holiday. In 1994, Congress passed the King Holiday and Service Act, designating the Martin Luther King Jr. Federal Holiday as a national day of service and charged the Corporation for National and Community Service with leading this effort. It is the only federal holiday so designated as a national day of service—a “day on, not a day off.”
 
On Monday, January 21st consider some small way of serving of a way of honoring King, and more importantly, honoring the Dream.
 
 
• HCUUF Pledge Commitments for 2019
 
Dear Members and Friends,
 
We have yet to hear from all in response to our plea for pledge commitments for 2019. Those who have responded have most generously increased their commitment in order to help us meet our balanced budget goal.
 
We're not there yet, however, so additional responses are hoped for and greatly appreciated.
 
If we do not meet our pledge goal, we will have to look for additional ways to cut our expenses.
 
Thank you for your generosity.
 
 
 Touchstones Corner: Grace 
 
Grace Happens by Rev. Fredric Muir
 
…In our culture, [in addition to] …three [ancient] understandings of grace—a consciousness of unity, a sense of divine order, a listening to life there stands …the core of a modern understanding of grace: it is unexpected—you don’t know when the blessings will occur; it is undeserved—there’s nothing you can do to earn grace; and yet it is everywhere, all about you—you don’t have to be in the right place, timing means nothing.
 
But, Frederick Buechner tells us, “There’s only one catch. Like any other gift, the gift of grace can be yours only if you reach out and take it.”
 
…Grace happens, if you’ll reach out and take it. Hence the mystery that makes grace amazing: while on the one hand you can’t do anything to force grace …if you’re not open to it …then there won’t be grace.
 
…As with Unitarian Universalism, grace is the affirmation that worth and dignity are inherent to who we are as human beings. Regardless of the mistakes we make, the tensions we might create, regardless of what society might tell us, we know we are valued.
 
…How many times do we have the opportunity of grace and we miss it…. Mary Oliver is one of those …poets who remind us to take notice of the small things.
 
...[She] asks: “Do you think there is anywhere, in any language, a word billowing enough for the pleasure that fills you as the sun reaches out….” Yes, there is such a word. Grace happens.
 
Source: Heretics’ Faith: Vocabulary for Religious Liberals by Fredric Muir (2001)
 
 
• Teeter Totter Grace