This Week’s Announcements 12/7/17

THIS WEEK At the Unitarian Universalist Church of Silver Spring December 7, 2017

Worship Services

THIS Sunday, December 10, 2017, Rev. Evan Keely, our Interim Minister, will lead TWO Services at 9:30am & 11:30am entitled: “When Our Strength Failed Us”. Please Join Us!

About the service:  Hanukkah, which begins this year on December 12th, has lessons for all people about overcoming adversity and understanding who we truly are…

Next Sunday, December 17th, our service entitled: “Re-examining Delilah: Survivor, Entrepreneur, Patriot, Hero”, will be led by Bob Clegg, a UU Seminarian.

About that Service: The modern field of African American Biblical Interpretation approaches Jewish and Christian scriptures through the lens of the interpreter’s experience, rather than the author’s presumed mindset. This approach avoids Eurocentric and patriarchal tendencies and liberates scripture from being anchored in time. Delilah’s story exemplifies how dominant scriptural interpreters have marginalized and degraded women and cultural “others,” and how a fresh examination can reveal their heroism and courage. The still-developing African American interpretive enterprise offers itself as a model for rehabilitating our Fourth UU Source to address injustice today.

About the Guest Speaker: Bob Clegg is a UU seminarian at Wesley Theological Seminary and is working on a Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Studies at American University. Next year he plans to open Justice Jobs, a nonprofit jobs office in Baltimore or Frederick, serving people who are reentering the workforce from incarceration, addiction, and chronic unemployment. Bob is a member of the UU Congregation of Frederick, MD, and he lives with his wife Connie in New Market, MD, with their three cats.

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. You can sign up to help with set up, clean up, decorating, helping keep the event green, or in another way by contacting Patti Poss at

Join us for a Holiday Social Hour after the evening service on Christmas Eve. The traditional Candlelight Christmas Eve Service will be at 8pm. We hope you will join us for cookies and other savory finger foods after the service (about 9pm). Please bring cookies or other savories to share. We will provide labels to indicate if the item is gluten free, dairy free, vegan, etc. 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.

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.

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:

RE Schedule: Normal class schedule for this week.

Christmas Pageant Rehearsal: 10:30 am in Classrooms on Sunday.

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


UUCSS Holiday Orchestra 2017: Players Wanted!  All Ages and Abilities Welcome!

If you play an orchestra or band instrument, please join us for this year’s Holiday Orchestra; and if you enjoy singing, please join the chorus! You would provide music for the caroling during coffee hour in between two services on December 17th. In the past, we’ve been particularly sparse in the string area, so if any violin, viola, or cello players are in hiding, please contact me to sign up to play. Also, if you have any friends who play instruments or sing who might want to come participate in the services, then please bring them along! The music will be fun and simple. We’ll have only one main rehearsal on Saturday, December 16th at 1:00pm in the Community Hall. Please RSVP Michael Holmes as soon as possible!

Rehearsal: Saturday, December 16th, 1:00PM in the Community Hall
Date: Sunday, December 17th, in between services
From: Michael Holmes, Music Director
RSVP: or call 571-277-6994


New Vice President for Programs / Program Council Chairperson – Gregg Harry:

Gregg Harry has been appointed as Vice President for Programs and Program Counsel Chairperson – he is filling the slot vacated by Miranda Bradley. Under the Church Constitution, a vacancy in a position on the Board (other than President) is filled by appointment by the President, and confirmed by the Board, to serve until the next congregational meeting, when the position is to be filled by a vote of the congregation for the balance of the term. Please join the Board in giving a huge round of thanks to Miranda for her service during the past year-and-a-half and welcoming Gregg to this position!

Gregg joined UUCSS in 2011, after moving to Maryland from Massachusetts. He has been very involved in Religious Education at UUCSS – he taught 4th/5th grade and preschool RE, joined the RE Committee in 2014, and became chairperson of the RE Committee in 2016. This summer, Gregg was on the DRE search committee. In addition, he served on the Capital Campaign Committee that worked to raise money for building repairs and future building needs.

Results of Supplemental Pledge Request

As you are probably aware, the Board requested that our members and friends consider increasing their pledges for this fiscal year. Due to a shortfall in our projected income, we were projecting to be $8,000 short of the budget adopted by the congregation in June. The Board is thrilled to report that our members and friends have answered the call! We have received approximately $10,000 in supplemental payments and pledges. We want to express our sincere gratitude to the people of UUCSS for stepping up to close this shortfall. We really appreciate the generosity of our members and friends, which will allow the congregation to fund the programs and staff that are critical to the work of this community!

The UUCSS Board of Trustees

John Henderson, President
Tamara Bowman, At-Large Trustee
Gregg Harry, Second Vice-President/Programs
Christa Maher, Secretary
Rev. Evan Keely, Minister (ex officio)
Lisa Schumaker, Third Vice-President/Finance
Sharon Snyder, Fourth Vice-President/Personnel
Fred Teal, At-Large Trustee
Emily Tien, First Vice-President/Corporate
Steve Wilmarth, At-Large Trustee.

The UUCSS Holiday Bazaar (Dec 10, 9 AM to 1 PM) needs YOU!

Volunteers needed to donate bake sale items, help vendors get connected to the wifi, help break down tables at 1 PM, and possibly staff booths for vendors (financial compensation provided for this one!).  E-mail Susan-Marie Stedman at to help out. 10% of all sales go to the church.

Beacon House Gift Drive Mistake + Deadline Extended to December 17

The Beacon House toy drive deadline has been extended to December 17th to correct a mistake we made on the display in the lobby. If you have already purchased a gift, not to worry. It will be used and appreciated.

If, however, you have not yet purchased a gift, we have corrective action we’d like you to take related to the ages on the star you picked: if your star has ages 6 and up written on it, go ahead and buy a gift commensurate with those ages. If your star has ages 0-5 on it, we’ll need to re-assign you an older age range, so please call or email Teresa Meeks–, ph. (240) 383-0692; or Carey Schneider–, ph. (240) 413-3487. You may also talk to either of us at church during either service on 12/10, and we hope the older ages aren’t too inconvenient. Thank you for your spirit of giving and forgiveness in this Christmas season!

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

About 20 people responded, so we WILL be having an experiential class on establishing a daily spiritual practice!  We need a 8 week stretch, so it looks like we will start mid-January.  I will send out a Doodle poll in December to find a time that works best for the most people.  If you expressed interest but don’t get the poll by Christmas, please let me know. I am excited that there is this level of interest.  Stay tuned!

–Doneby at

Paint Branch Montessori School Open Houses

Paint Branch Montessori School serves children from two to twelve years old. The school has a warm and welcoming atmosphere for the children and families. If you are interested in Montessori education please consider visiting the school.

The next open house is:

  • Wednesday, December 13th from 9am to 11am

You can RSVP by calling or emailing the school.

Paint Branch Montessori School
10309 New Hampshire Avenue
Silver Spring, Maryland 20903

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!

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

Weekly Announcement Deadlines: All OOS Information, Written & Oral Announcements and All-Church Email Announcements for Sunday Services are due in the Admin Office by 9am every Wednesday.


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 The Dispossessed, a sci fi fantasy novel by Ursula Le Guin. The next meeting will be held at the home of Steve Schmidt (1024 Copley Lane, Silver Spring) on Sunday, December 3 at 7 pm. All are welcome. 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!


The UUCSS Children’s Choir

The UUCSS Children’s Choir is just about to begin its second expanded year-round continuous program with performances during several services this church year. Rehearsals will continue THIS Sunday, November 12th, between the two services. Weekly regular rehearsals will be led by Audrey Engdahl and Michael Holmes. We are seeking children from the ages of 5-11 who simply love to sing. No past experience is required. Please contact Michael Holmes at or Audrey Engdahl at to register or for more information and to obtain a sign-up form. There are also sign-up forms around the church, in the RE rooms and at the welcome desk.

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

Information Technology (IT) CHAIR Needed!

Put your IT expertise to use for the church as our new IT Chair.  Responsibilities include: approving all IT expenses, purchasing equipment, providing opinions regarding IT related matters at the monthly OPs council meetings, and submitting an IT budget for yearly expenses.  IT services are used by the administrative offices, church web server, and audio visual team.  Nancy Dougherty was the former chair and will be happy to answer your questions about the position.

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: