UUCPA RE newsletter: November, 2015

Contents:

1a. Sunday school calendar
1b. Youth calendar (SHYG, Coming of Age, OWL)
1c. Navigators
2. From your Associate Minister of Religious Education
3. Halloween costume parade on Oct. 25
4. Children’s choir Nov. 1, 8, 15, and 22
5. How is the new youth group schedule working?

1a. Sunday school calendar

Sun., Oct. 25, 9:30 a.m.: Sunday school
10:30 a.m.: Hallowe’en costume parade (see below)

Sun., Nov. 1, 9:30 a.m.: Sunday school
10:30 a.m.: First Sunday community singing

Sun., Nov. 8, 9:30 a.m.: Sunday school
11:00 a.m.: Parent Journey
12:15 p.m.: 2nd Sunday lunch

Sun., Nov. 15, 9:30 a.m.: Sunday school

Sun., Nov. 22, 9:30 a.m.: Intergenerational Thanksgiving service
10:30 a.m.: 4th Sunday brunch

Sun., Nov. 29, 9:30 a.m.: Sunday school

1b. Youth calendar (SHYG, Coming of Age, OWL)

Sun., Oct. 25, 9:30 a.m.: High school drop-in group
11:00 a.m.: United Nations group
6:30 p.m.: SHYG
6:30 p.m.: OWL gr. 7-9

Sun., Nov. 1, 9:30 a.m.: SHYG
6:30: OWL gr. 7-9

Sun., Nov. 8, 9:30 a.m.: High school drop-in group
11:00 a.m.: Open meeting on youth programs schedule (see below)
6:30 p.m.: SHYG
6:30 p.m.: OWL gr. 7-9

Sun., Nov. 15, 9:30 a.m.: SHYG meeting
6:30 p.m.: OWL gr. 7-9

Sun., Nov. 22, 9:30 a.m.: High school drop-in group
11:00 a.m.: Coming of Age (plywood sculptures)
6:30 p.m.: SHYG
6:30 p.m.: OWL gr. 7-9

Sun., Nov. 29, 9:30 a.m.: High school drop-in group
6:30 p.m.: SHYG
6:30 p.m.: OWL gr. 7-9

1c. Navigators
Navigators is our bias-free scouting program. Junior Navigators is ages 7-11 (approx.), and Senior Navigators is 11-17. Both groups usually meet at 11:00 a.m. on first and third Sundays, but often do special activities. For meeting dates, please contact Ed Vail to be put on the email list.

 

2. From your Associate Minister of Religious Education

I’m back from my sabbatical early. Actually, I wound up not taking my last two months of sabbatical. Instead, I spent three weeks on study leave, doing curriculum development, and one week in Massachusetts helping take care of the affairs of my father, who is now in hospice care. Some of you are also helping your aging parents, or have recently experienced the death of a parent. These are common experiences for people in their middle adulthood. And it’s worth reviewing what it’s like when a parent dies.

First of all, if you have a parent who is in failing health, or who is dying, you are likely to experience what the experts call “anticipatory grief.” Which is to say, you are feeling some sense of loss knowing that this person who has been a part of your life from the beginning will soon be gone. Even if you have a difficult relationships with an aging parent, even if you are going to be relieved once they die, you are likely to feel grief anyway — humans can feel grief even at happy life transitions (which is why people cry at weddings). Anticipatory grief can really slow you down, and those of us who are experiencing anticipatory grief find we tend to forget things, and we find we just can’t get much done.

When a parent dies — actually, when anyone close to you dies — human beings tend to go through some common experiences. For a week or two after a parent dies, you tend to be numb. The feeling of grief tends to set in after the numbness wears off. For many people, the grief is strongest somewhere between four and seven months after the death; unfortunately, our society expects people to recover from grief after just two or three months, which means that when you are in deepest grief you might have people (including your boss at work) telling you to “just snap out of it.” I also think that people who experience the sudden death of a parent tend to have somewhat deeper grief than those of us who have gone through some anticipatory grief. Then for most people, the grief starts to lessen sometime after about seven months, although the first anniversary of the person’s death can be a pretty sad time. And most people take between 18 and 24 months before they really emerge from grief.

Grief turns out to be an interesting emotion. On the one hand, when you’re grieving, you tend to be less effective and less efficient in life, and that can be annoying to the people around you (especially co-workers, children, and spouses). There aren’t many other emotions that have such a pronounced and extended impact on your life. On the other hand, when you’re grieving you often have a rich inner life, with lots of memories, dreams, and reflections on your life. If you take the time to grieve fully — thus, no doubt, annoying your co-workers, children, and spouse — you may find that you undergo a great deal of inner growth and change. Grief is not very pleasant, but it can lead to inner growth.

There’s a lot more that can be said about grief, and if this is something that’s on your mind, I’m always interested in talking with you about it. Just remember that as I go through my own grieving, I’m likely to be less efficient and sometimes annoying to the people around me!

See you soon,
Dan Harper

 

3. Halloween costume parade on Oct. 25

It’s time for the annual UUCPA Haloween costume parade! On Sunday, Oct. 25, you are invited to come to the first service in your Halloween costume. Then between the two services, all the children up to grade 5 who are in costume will be invited to parade around the patio in their costume. The middle schoolers in the Purple 2 class will judge the costumes and hand out certificates to everyone who participates.

 

4. Children’s choir Nov. 1, 8, 15, and 22

Bruce Olstad, Music Director at UUCPA, will be offering UUCPA children a chance to sing together in a children’s choir during the month of November. The Children’s Choir will meet at the same time as Sunday school, and children in grades 2-5 who would like to participate in the choir will go to rehearsals instead of Sunday school. Rehearsals will take place on Nov. 1, 8, and 15, and the Choir will sing in the service on Nov. 22. Children should attend at least two of the three rehearsals.

Bruce is not only assistant conductor and chorusmaster for several local opera companies, he is also a vocal coach and accompanist for the Ragazzi Boys Chorus. We are lucky to have someone with his musical experience, and with his experience teaching music to children, leading our Children’s Choir.

 

5. How is the new youth group schedule working?

This fall, we started having Senior High Youth Group (SHYG) meetings at two different times, 9:30 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. So now SHYG meets at 6:30 p.m. on the 2nd, 4th, and 5th Sundays, and SHYG meets at 9:30 a.m. on the 1st and 3rd Sundays. We also started offering a “drop-in” group at 9:30 a.m. on the 2nd and 4th Sundays — a less structured group with adult chaperones. We’ve been doing this for almost three months now, and it’s time to decide how we like this new system.

If you have a high school aged teen in your family, would you please ask that youth, and the parents, to fill out a simple online form about UUCPA youth programs. here’s the link to the form:
https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1o-AAlcD0IJXMpacpyGaflj_PUcrbocoBb4iNTzJpMo8/viewform?usp=send_form

We’d also like to hear from you directly, and to do that we’ll have open meetings at different times. Dan Harper, our associate minister, will host the first meeting in his office on Sunday, November 8, from 11-12 noon (note that second Sunday lunch will happen right after this meeting). High school aged youth, parents, and youth advisors are all welcome to come to talk about our new system.

There will also be at least one more meeting in early December.

 

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