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Actors Needed for a Staged-Reading of the Play, SWEAT. Auditions at UUCSS May 21

The Social Justice Players, sponsored by The Unitarian Universalist Social Justice Program, and in coordination with the Chalice Theatre at the UU Church of Arlington (UUCA) and the UU Church of Silver Spring (UUCSS), will be presenting the Pulitzer-Prize-winning play, SWEAT, by Lynn Nottage, to be directed by Bruce McConachie. There will be six staged-readings…

March Update from the Search Committee

The Search Committee has been busy reviewing applicants’ packets, interviewing applicants, and preparing for preview weekends. It is an exciting time, as we have moved from data gathering, summarizing in the congregational record, and then actually getting to talk with applicants. Through the process we continue to return to what we heard in the cottage meetings to guide our discernment. Participants in…

February Update from the Search Committee

Shhh… the Search Committee has gone quiet. However, rest assured, we’re not asleep at the wheel. We’ve been working steadily behind the scenes. We’ve reviewed ministerial candidate packets and references, developed interview questions, tested out those questions in a dry run with Rev. Lyn, and completed a first round of video conference interviews with interested candidates. At this writing, we are in…

New Year’s Update from the Search Committee

Thank you to everyone who participated in the Beyond Categorical Thinking workshop in early December. We had more than 60 people who participated, which is a larger number than our Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) workshop facilitators have seen in much larger congregations! We appreciate the commitment to our beloved community this demonstrates. Participants appreciated the opportunity to consider how their privilege affects…

Beyond Categorical Thinking Workshop – December 1st

The Search Committee invites all UUCSS members and friends to join us for an important workshop, entitled “Beyond Categorical Thinking.”  The workshop will take place on December 1st, 1:00-4:00pm, and is designed by the UUA to promote inclusive thinking for congregations who are in the search process for a new minister. Two specially trained and experienced facilitators – Mary Esther Johnson and Carol Carter Walker…

November Greetings from the Search Committee!

Thanks to everyone who answered the congregational survey, participated in a cottage meeting, and came to the data synthesis work session on October 14. The participation was great, with more than 150 people participating in cottage meetings and more than 170 responses to the survey! Some facts from the survey: • The most common adjectives people use to describe UUCSS are “friendly,”…

Gathering in Community Following the Election

On Wednesday, November 9th, Rev. Liz and I invited people to gather with us at the church to process the results of the presidential election. We began together in the Sanctuary, and then I met with a number of children in the Community Hall while the adults continued processing with Rev. Liz. I wanted to share…

Covenants in my life and UUCSS

Our ministry theme for this month of September is Covenant.  Covenant used to be a loaded word at Silver Spring.  When I first arrived no one was willing to use it.  While most UU churches call their small group ministry ‘Covenant Groups’ we called ours Inreach Groups for that reason.  One of the early steps recommended was to make a covenant of understanding between the church and myself, but the leadership at UUCSS decided it wasn’t a good idea to do that soon, and so we postponed it for a few years and finally did one jointly between myself and the church and then-DRE Mandy Keithan and the church.

Turning towards covenant in a difficult time

Our monthly ministry theme for the month of September is covenant, and that theme is particularly poignant for me during this time. Many of us, myself included, are grieving over the resignation of associate minister Rev. Dr. Leon Dunkley, and as we come to terms with this transition I see some people turning to our congregational covenant. But what does it mean to covenant with one another, particularly in times when we may be feeling broken?  Are our covenants uplifting us or are they silencing honest expression of pain?