OUUC members and friends continue to respond to the fear and uncertainty stirred by recent national events with positive acts that exhibit resilience, offer hope, and make this world we share a better place. .Here are some upcoming and ongoing efforts that all are invited – indeed, urged – to join and support.

THIS WEEK , February 20-26, 2017:

Saturday, February 25. 9:00 am – 4:00 pm. BOOKS, BEANS, AND BROWNIES!  Bring friends, buy books, eat brownies, drink coffee, and enjoy entertainment in the Bistro! All proceeds benefit programs serving the homeless in this community:  Sidewalk, Interfaith Works Overnight Shelter and Warming Center, Quixote Village, and Thurston Youth Services.

Sunday February 26, 12:00-2:00 pm. SECOND ANNUAL NORTHWEST DETENTION CENTER TRIBUNAL outside the main entrance to the Northwest Detention Center at 1623 E J Street in Tacoma. This event is being “organized by undocumented immigrants and formerly detained to highlight the inhumane conditions on which the immigration system operates and permits for private corporations to profit from people’s misery.”  https://www.facebook.com/events/1657391721227321/

The Northwest Detention center is a private immigration prison, owned by the GEO Group under contract with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.  Its capacity is 1,575 people, making it one of the largest immigration detention centers in the US.

 

ONGOING EVENTS

THANK YOU, OUUC COMMUNITY KITCHEN CREW!

Each month OUUC members and friends prepare and serve a delicious dinner at the Community Care Center’s Community Kitchen. In January, 144 meals were served to hungry guests.

In March the OUUC crew has two dinner services – March 17 and 31. On the menu are Irish-inspired dishes – the crew’s signature dish, cottage pie, and the classic stuffed baked potato.

To support the work this group is doing in our community, the OUUC Faith in Action Steering Committee approved a $1,000 donation to the CCS Community Kitchen to purchase non-consumable items for the kitchen (paper napkins, gloves, wipes and utensil replacement) and other food stuff, not regularly donated (spices or special items OUUC might need to complete planned meals).

Want to be a part of this cheerful cooking crew? They would love to have you join them! Contact Karmel Shields, karmelshields@comcast.net

 

RACE IN FILM SERIES

Nearly 100 people from OUUC and the community attended the premiere event in the monthly Race in Film series. The first showing featured PBS’s Many Rivers to Cross, which traces the 500-year history of African Americans on this continent.

The year-long film series explores how our perceptions of race are shaped by depictions in popular films.

Sponsored by OUUC’s Faith in Action Ministry, the United Churches of Olympia, and the Black Alliance of Thurston County, the showings will be followed by a discussion moderated by members of the sponsoring organizations.

Join us the third Thursday of each month, 6:30-9:00 pm, in the OUUC sanctuary. Great company, conversation, and refreshments provided by OUUC’s Standing Up to Racism team!

 

SUPPORTING OUR MUSLIM NEIGHBORS

OUUC member and past board president Jack Jackson sent this message to the Olympia Islamic Center:

“I was recently a guest at your Mosque, and I have to share that I felt very welcome, every bit as much as I do at my church, OUUC. I want to let you and the rest of your community know that you have a friend in me and my wife. We stand with you and your community on the side of love.

I was disturbed that you had to advise your people to be aware and beware of the FBI, it sorrows me that my country’s fear of a people and a religion is so disrespectful. This is not the country I have known and loved and certainly is not my belief. I honor and respect you and your community.” – In Peace, Jacob “Jack” Jackson

Thanks, Jack! I encourage others to reach out to our Muslim neighbors to support their community as rhetoric and acts threaten their safety, security, and right to practice their religion in peace.

 

WELCOMING CONGREGATION

In the early 1990s OUUC earned its designation as a Welcoming Congregation, which means that leadership and members show sensitivity and inclusiveness to persons of all gender identities. In the several decades since then, understandings of gender, sexuality, and identity have evolved and expanded. Yet some of our language and practices (i.e. restroom labeling, awareness of gender identity pronoun use, and a deeper understanding of human sexuality) have not evolved.

We want to be a radically hospitable church, truly welcoming to all, and OUUC’s Faith in Action Ministry would like to make that happen! The Unitarian Universalist Association has updated its Welcoming Congregation materials to reflect today’s reality, and I am inviting interested persons to be part of a team to 1. look at our original Welcoming Congregation document, and 2. lay the groundwork for expanding the congregation’s understanding of what Welcoming Congregation means today.

Our first meeting will be Sunday, March 5, at 12:30 pm, following second service. Join us, and be part of change at OUUC. Oh, yes – food will be available!

Questions or comments? Contact Rev. Carol McKinley, OUUC Faith in Action Ministry., at faithinactionministry@ouuc.org