Sunday, February 22, 2009

Finding Home: A Worship Service for All Ages

This coming Sunday, March 1, join us for the first multigenerational worship service of the year!  Becky Brooks and Betty Dabney will be leading worship for all ages starting at our usual time, 11:00 am, in the sanctuary.

Our topic is "Finding Home." What is Home? How do we find it? How do we make it? Why is it important? Come explore this question together in a family-friendly worship for all ages.

There will be no RE classes Sunday, Mar. 1, and all children are encouraged to attend worship. However, childcare will be available for small children who may need it, in the downstairs classrooms.

This Sunday will also be the first Sunday for our Mystery Buddies program.  Don't forget to bring a clue for your buddy if you are participating in the program this year!

See you on Sunday!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Courage Campaign

"Fidelity": Don't Divorce... from Courage Campaign on Vimeo.

Thanks to Sarah Walker, one of the youth of First Unitarian Church of Baltimore, who sent this video and the following message:

Hello Everyone, 

Have you heard that Ken Starr -- and the Prop 8 Legal Defense Fund -- filed legal briefs defending the constitutionality of Prop 8 and attempting to forcibly divorce 18,000 same-sex couples that were married in California last year? The Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in this case on March 5, with a decision expected within 90 days. 

The Courage Campaign has created a video called "Fidelity," with the permission of musician Regina Spektor, that puts a face to those 18,000 couples and all loving, committed couples seeking full equality under the law.

Please watch this heartbreaking video now. If you have the same reaction that I did, please help me spread the word by sharing it with your friends and family ASAP:

The more people who see this video, the more people will understand the pain caused by Prop 8 and Ken Starr's shameful legal proceeding. 

After you watch the video, please join me and over 300,000 people who have signed a letter to the state Supreme Court, asking them to invalidate Prop 8 and reject Starr's case. 

Sarah Walker

Friday, February 20, 2009

Prayer for Our Children

by Robert F. Kaufmann 

We wish for you a storm or two that you may enjoy the calm. We wish for you tranquility in time of trial. We wish you a cool breeze on a warm day, and pale white clouds that you may better appreciate the blueness of the sky. We wish you darkness that you may see the stars.

We wish you anticipation of high adventure, and we wish you the courage to avoid battle. We wish you a sense of wonder -- and poetry -- and music. We wish you companionship that you may appreciate solitude.

We wish you a friend who will understand you, and understanding so that you may have a friend. We wish you may become all that you wish to be, and more than you hope that you can be.

We wish you a flower to smell, a hand to touch, a voice to cheer, a heart to gladden. And we wish you someone to love, as we love you.

via UUA: Worship Web, an online worship resource "dedicated to deepening worship in UU churches."

Monday, February 16, 2009

Youth Concert Brings in the People and the Money!

First Unitarian's Youth Group hosted an incredibly successful benefit concert on Valentine's day to support the Fuel Fund of Maryland.  Over 60 people gathered in the Enoch Pratt Parish Hall to enjoy the evening's entertainment and more than $650 was raised for the Fuel Fund!
Comedian Ben Paulson shared his original material in opening for our main act, Hopeful-E (Sarah Walker, Lewis Shaw, Daniel Lemer, Luke Carney and special guest, Annie Lemieux).  The band played a mix of original songs and covers.  A video is available here for their cover of "My Eyes" from Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog.

Our in-house baker, Nick DiGregorio worked long hours to provide delicious cookies and brownies for the bake sale table.  Chris Hutter served as our official emcee, getting things off to a rocking start by invoking the Rolling Stones.  Other youth group members, Emily Cross-Barnet, Logan Wyatt, Carrie DiGregorio and Garrett Preston helped decorate, staffed the sales tables, helped clean up and otherwise contributed to making this event a smoothly run and stellar success!  

Thank you to everyone who turned out to support our awesome youth and a great cause!  Photos of the evening can be found here.  

If you weren't able to make it, but would like to make a contribution to the Fuel Fund of Maryland, you can do so online here.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Let's Party for Warmth!

The Teen Group of First Unitarian enthusiastically invites you to a benefit concert for the Maryland Fuel Fund on Valentine's Day, Feb. 14, 7-10 pm.  

For just a $5 cover charge, you will be able to enjoy not only the musical stylings of "Hopeful-E" and the comedy of Ben Polson, but you will also know you are making a difference because all proceeds from the event will benefit the Maryland Fuel Fund, helping to heat the homes of countless local families.

While you're here, be sure to partake of our bake sale with delicious goodies, also benefiting the Maryland Fuel Fund.

Doors open at 7:00 pm, Saturday, Feb. 14.  The Enoch Pratt Parish Hall is located just behind our sanctuary at 514 Charles St. 

Come help us rock the house and party for warmth!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Difficult Choices: Harriet Tubman

I have heard their groans and sighs, and seen their tears, and I would give every drop of blood in my veins to free them.Harriet Tubman

On Sunday Ms. Valeri spoke with the congregation about Harriet Tubman and the difficult choices she faced in her life.  

As we enter Black History Month this February, you may want to take some time in your family to learn more about the history of fellow Marylanders like Harriet Tubman.  

There are many good books about this hero of the Underground Railroad, including the ones Ms. Valeri shared with us:

While you're waiting for the books to arrive in the mail, or on your way to the library, Baltimore's own Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture is conveniently located right downtown and offers a wonderful opportunity to deepen one's understanding.

Snowed in?  Check out some of the great web resources about the life of Harriet Tubman at Scholastic's Underground Railroad website or Harriet

By committing herself to her deepest beliefs in the value of human life and human freedom, Harriet Tubman saved many lives.  Though you will hopefully never have to put your life on the line for what you believe in, we all make choices in our daily lives that support or contradict our values.  What is it that you value?  What actions do you take in your life to put those values to work?