This Week’s Announcements 12/20/17

THIS WEEK At the Unitarian Universalist Church of Silver Spring December 20, 2017

Worship Services

Two Christmas Eve Services

Christmas Eve, December 24th, falls on Sunday this year, so we’ll have our first service at 10:30am, when we’ll have our Annual Childrens’ Pageant and hear our multi-generational choir perform. We will have a second evening candelight service at 8 pm, with the Sanctuary Singers. All are welcome!


 We hope you will join us for an Intergenerational Potluck Brunch after the morning service on Christmas Eve (about 11:30am).  Please bring a dish to share – bagels and cream cheese, pastries, an egg dish, fruit, yogurt, juice, and more (labeled if it is gluten free, dairy free, vegan, etc.) We will gather in the Community Hall for a fun celebration, including a sing-a-long.  Please sign up to help with set up, clean up, decorating, helping keep the event green, or in another way by contacting Patti Poss at  You can drop off food prior to the service. We will have the warming ovens going in the kitchen in the sanctuary building and crockpot dishes are also welcome. We still need 6 people to arrive at 9:30 am to help with set up. We also need an additional crew to help clean up after the event. Thank you!

Join us for a Holiday Social Hour after the evening service on Christmas Eve. The  traditional Candlelight Christmas Eve Service will be at 8pm.  There will be a Potluck Cookie Reception after the 8:00 service. Please drop off cookies or other treats before the service to share, We will provide labels to indicate if the item is gluten free, dairy free, vegan, etc. Please join us for cookies and other savory finger foods after the service (about 9pm).   We will gather in the Community Hall for conversation and fellowship. Questions? Comments? Want to help? Email Robin Moore at

Please join us and invite your family and friends for these much-anticipated times of family and community.  All are welcome – there will be plenty!

Worship Services Time Change December 24, 2017 – March 25, 2018

PLEASE NOTE: Regarding UPCOMING Worship Services, from December 24, 2017 through March 25, 2018 (inclusive), UUCSS will have ONE Sunday worship service at 10:30am. Coffee Hour will take place after the service.

New Year’s Eve Jazz Service

Our New Year’s Eve Jazz Service will take place Sunday, December 31st, 2017 at 10:30 am. We’ll end the Year at UUCSS with inspiring words and jazz featuring longtime UUCSS members Deborah Thornton & Bruce Krohmer along with other talented musicians.

Sunday Service Flowers Needed January 7, 2018

UUCSS needs flowers for the Worship Service on Sunday, January 7, 2018.  We ask that you bring flowers around 10 am for the service at 10:30am. You will receive a reminder call in the week before. Please call or email Pat Hulsebosch at 240-643-2976 or

Happy Holidays from the entire UUCSS Staff!!

Religious Education


Welcome to the new Religious Education school year! We are traveling back in time this year to learn about Unitarian Universalist history. This coincides perfectly with the celebration of the 65th Anniversary of UUCSS!

Registration: Still need to register for RE or OWL? No problem! Register here:

Young Religious Unitarian Universalists

Young Religious Unitarian Universalists (YRUU) is a group for youth in grades 10-12. All youth in these grades are welcome. We meet during the second service in the Fellowship House on church grounds (If there is only one service, check the RE board in the Sanctuary building entrance to see if we are meeting; announcements will also be made in the church newsletter and Facebook group). Adult advisers and the RE assistant facilitate meetings. Email for more details about this program or to add your youth’s email to the YRUU email list.

Questions? Comments? Concerns?

Please reach out to the DRE Catherine at


Subject: 2017 Tax Deduction

A notice for our members and friends who itemize on their federal taxes:  Based on the information that is public about the tax plan it appears that the 2018 tax year will increase the standard deduction to $12,000 for single filers and to $24,000 for married couples filing jointly. Because of this change, many more people will choose to use the standard deduction rather than to itemize on their 2018 taxes.

If you think you will use the standard deduction on your 2018 taxes, it might make sense for you to pay the remaining amount of your
2017-18 UUCSS Annual Budget Drive pledge and/or your Capital Campaign pledges before December 31, 2017. That way you can take advantage of the existing tax code and maximize your deductions by claiming this amount on your 2017 tax return. As always, we urge you to speak to your financial advisers for any specific tax advice.

Charity of the Month for December 2017

Our December Charity of the Month is Beacon House. Founded in 1991 by Reverend Donald E. Robinson, a Unitarian Universalist (UU) Minister.   Beacon House is a neighborhood-based organization that supports at-risk youth and families in Northeast D.C.   The mission of Beacon House is to provide children with a safe, nurturing, and life-expanding community in which to increase their academic achievement, discover their talents, and to grow into healthy adults who achieve their greatest potential.   Their programs focus on closing the education achievement gap – and thus improving the economic trajectories – of children in Ward 5 for whom generational poverty is most persistent. 

UUCSS members support Beacon House by tutoring in their after-school programs, offering field trips, and more.  For more information about Beacon House, please visit their website at Beacon House.

The collection for this welcoming organization will be Sunday, December 24th, 2017, when 100% of the plate will be donated. Please make your checks out to “UUCSS”, but be certain to write “Beacon House” in the Memo line of your check so that we know what you intended it for.  Thank you.

By the way, UUCSS got this note from the Executive Director of Beacon House about your toys and gift cards:

Thanks again to you and your congregations for all of the gifts and gift cards you have provided to our students this year.  We held a Christmas gift event last night, and our students and staff were blown away by both the range of presents that your collective generosity made possible and the efforts made to make the holiday gift wishes of individual children come true.”  –Kevin

Photo Directories

The Membership Committee has about 50 copies of the updated Photo Directory for members and friends who would like a hard copy. They’ll be available on Sunday mornings, as long as they last. We’re asking a $4 donation to cover the cost of printing. If there’s a big demand, we’ll print 50 more.

Daytime Inreach Group

Are you new to the Church and wanting to get acquainted with other UUCSSers in a small group setting?  If so, the Daytime Inreach Group has a few openings.  If you’re free on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM, you might give us a try.  Contact Bev McGaughy, coordinator, for details (phone: 301-565-0895 or email:

Daily Spiritual Practice Group

The search for the best dates and times for our experiential class is on!  The Doodle poll is out and 10 of the 21 interested people have responded.  If you haven’t responded yet, please do. If you had expressed an interest and didn’t get the link to the poll, please let me know by calling or emailing me.  Thanks,  Doneby, 240-426-2351

Attention Planners of Church Events

The Green Sanctuary Committee, in conjunction with the Property Committee, and the Program Council, has posted helpful resources on the Green Sanctuary page of the UUCSS web site to ensure our events follow our values by being green! Click on for guidelines on greening events, recycling, and composting. You just may learn something new!

Parking During Church Services & Events

In an effort to be as welcoming to visitors as possible, we encourage UUCSS members who are able to not park in the UUCSS lot for Sunday services or large events so that we can keep spots open for visitors. Good alternative parking spots include the side streets near UUCSS and the CHI lot just north of the church on New Hampshire Avenue. Thank you in advance for your help.

Deadlines for Announcements

The Church Administrator will be out-of-the-office from THIS Thursday, December 21st until Tuesday, January 2nd, 2018.  Please Note that there will be No All-Church Email the week of December 25th.

Much Thanks to all the volunteers who help me all year long with the church Order of Service! In particular, I want to mention Sally Porter, Rachel Vanarsdall and John Sullivan – who have been so helpful and giving of their time for many years.  I have been truly blessed with their help and friendship!

Financial Contributions to UUCSS

We appreciate your financial contributions to UUCSS and want to provide accurate records for you. To help us do this, please put “Auction,” “Capital Campaign,” or “2017-18 Pledge” in the memo line of your check. If you want to donate stock, please email for easy instructions on how to move the stock into the church’s Etrade account. Thank you!


Memorial Service Notices

 SHIRLEY GERTRUDE DIENER, long time UUCSS member passed away November 20, 2017.  Shirley worked as a Real Estate Agent for Gray Kessinger and then Long & Foster for many years.  She also worked for 10 years at the Bakers and Confectionary Union.  Hobbies included sewing, painting, gardening, and making friends.  Shirley loved people and made new friends everywhere she went.  For years she served coffee and breakfast items at UUCSS on Sundays and then ran off to greet potential buyers at an open house.

Shirley Diener is survived by her three sons Ted, Bob, and Mike and her siblings William Baumann and Elizabeth Marlowe. She also leaves five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.  There will be a Memorial Service at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Silver Spring at 11 AM Sharp on Thursday, December 28, 2017. Everyone is welcome and lunch will be served after the service.  In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Shirley’s name to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Silver Spring.

 Carol Hamilton’s father, William G. Hamilton, died peacefully in his sleep on December 8, 2017 at 92. A retired foreign service officer, Bill spent several years helping out with Carol’s daughter, Yassi, including being her ‘homework coach.’  

There will be a memorial service for Bill in the UUCSS sanctuary at 2pm on Saturday January 6th. A reception will follow.   In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the ARC of Montgomery County, MD.

Women’s Book Group

The Women’s Book Group has been in existence since 2000 and we welcome interested readers. No long-term obligation required. We meet on the fourth Monday of the month; contact for more information. We will not meet in December but will be reading A Manual for Cleaning Women: Selected Stories by Lucia Berlin for our January 22, 2018 gathering.

Men’s Book Reading Group

We are reading Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward, the winner of the 2017 National Book Award for Fiction. The next meeting will be at 7:00 on Sunday, January 21, at the home of Jerry Herbers.  If you are interested in joining the group, contact Richard Lorr (, get the book, and come to the next meeting. Hope to see you there!


There is a place for you in the UUCSS Sanctuary Singers!!

If you love music, love singing, and love community, come join the choir! The UUCSS Sanctuary Singers perform a diverse array of styles of music, including contemporary UU, classical, gospel, chant, jazz, and early music, normally two Sundays per month during the regular church year, with the summers off. Past choir and/or other musical experience is helpful but not required. Sight singing and ear training classes can be arranged with the music director to provide individual attention and assistance with the music. The choir is open to all generations. Rehearsals are Thursday nights 7:30pm- 9:30pm in the UUCSS sanctuary. For more information contact

Volunteer with the UUCSS RE Program!

Sages and seekers, wanderers and wonderers, RE is searching for volunteer teachers for the new school year! Please contact Catherine at

The UUCSS RE program could not function without the help of many UUCSS community members who serve the program with their time and energy. There are a number of volunteer roles for people with varying amounts of RE experience and available time to give. Would you like to help with children’s worship once a month? Can you teach one of our 9:30 am RE classes two times per month? You can help provide spiritual nourishment for the youngest members of this faith community! Email for more information or to volunteer.

Volunteer of the Month – Tina Borror

Tina Borror has successfully chaired the Auction four times, headed the Music Committee for six years, and been a vibrant member of the UUCSS musical community ever since she started attending services at UUCSS. Tina and Marty Atias first visited UUCSS in 2010, looking for a spiritual home and community in their neighborhood that shared their liberal values. UUCSS was the first—and last—local UU church they visited on their quest for a spiritual home. Tina joined the choir almost immediately. She participates in musical groups as a flutist, ukulele player, singer, and soloist. She also joined the Music Committee and a year later became its chair. Tina is particularly proud of the work the Music Committee has done to host various musical residencies and more recently to participate in local concerts with Strathmore. Currently, the Music Committee and the choir are preparing for a concert at the People’s Community Baptist Church on February 25th called “Remembering Selma”. Tina finds great spiritual and emotional connection through music and believes that many other UUCSS members do also.

Tina and Marty attended their first Auction shortly after they started coming to UUCSS and thought that it was the “most fun fundraiser” they had ever attended. Tina volunteered for several Auctions and, when a call went out for someone to chair the Auction, Tina put up her hand. Besides donations, over fifty people volunteer annually to help run Auction. The Auction not only raises money, but also unites people through the shared work to put on the Auction and the Auction events people attend all year long. Tina believes that actively participating at the church is a great way to know people and to connect with our core values.

UUCSS Member Dropbox Link

In order to provide ready access to documents that help everyone stay engaged and informed about church matters, the UUCSS Board of Trustees created folders in Dropbox at the following link:–iMJ0zHRNa?dl=0

Click on the link, or copy/paste it into your browser, and it will take you to “UUCSS Member Dropbox”. There you can view minutes from board meetings, congregational meetings, and annual meetings, as well as copies of UUCSS constitution and policies, and other resources. New folders and documents will be added over time. Questions about the Dropbox may be sent to: Emails to the Board of Trustees may be sent to: