Univoice Weekly

Weekly News for the week of:
July 18, 2021

This Sunday:

Relentless Gifts

July 18, 2021

This morning is an opportunity to worship together with members and friends of UU Berks at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Thomas Paine (TPUUF), led by Rev. Dr. Larry Peers to explore Relentless Gifts.

Don’t we often recognize many of the lessons and gifts of our life retrospectively? When we are experiencing a particular challenge, aren’t we often anxious to get through it or over it as quickly as possible? As we make meaning out of life, often we engage in a deeper conversation with our past, present, and future—all at once.

The poet, David Whyte, writes that we are often drawn to “making false choices: living only in the past, or only in the present, or only in the future, or even, living only two out of the three.” (Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words.)

What are the practices that can keep us in this fuller conversation with our life as a whole?

How to view this service:

Option 1) visit https://uuberks.org/zoom-worship

Option 2) Visit  tpuuf.org, and at the top of the page click on the link:  “Click here to join us on Sundays at 10:30AM for our Online Worship Service”

Option 3) Login via Zoom at the link below. You may be prompted to enter the meeting info below.

Meeting ID: 845 801 170
Passcode: 12345

Option 4) Join by phone

Dial 1- 646 -558 -8656 US (New York)
Meeting ID: 845 801 170
Passcode: 12345

Please Note: Members and friends of the Buxmont Unitarian Universalist Fellowship and The Unitarian Universalist Church of the Lehigh Valley will also be joining this service.

Tonight – FRIDAY

7:00 PM:

  • For this week’s story, we honor the gift of laughter, with The Book With No Pictures, illustrated and told by B.J.Novak.


9:45 AM RE Hangout 

  • Seeds, Sprouts and Saplings (elementary ages): in RE Hangout Zoom Room with Ms Ebee and Ms Erin
  • Playing Just Pretend, 

    The theme of Play invites us to think of jokes. There are jokes which heal with laughter. There are also jokes that

    harm by being cruel or mean to a group of people. We can detest these so-called “jokes” and lift up the truly

    funny jokes which make us laugh. So, what’s one of the ways our faith guides us into being a people of Play? It

    tells us “Spread the jokes that heal and bury the jokes that harm.”

  • link sent via Remind 1 hour before class.  If you need access please email Erin (epcjjc@gmail.com)

** For June through August we plan alternate weeks between structured lessons and kid directed play.  

10:30 am 

  • For All: This Sunday we visit with a three other area churches to hear and explore what it can mean to live in the past, present and future all at once.
  • Coloring Sheet: “Live With Great Rejoicing coloring page by DRE at large Jenn Blosser
  • Use a printed or hand labyrinth to find renewal as you attend worship this morning. Here’s a labyrinth you can print out and trace.  Labyrinth Printable

10:45 – 11:30

Monday – Thursday 

Daily posts on our new covenanted RE Facebook page
check out our Remind classroom. 
If you need to signup link here: remind.com/join/refuucbc

The 8th Principle and FUUBC: Common Read

The 8th Principle Team invites all who would like to learn about building the Beloved Community at FUUBC to join us in reading  Mistakes and Miracles: Congregations on the Road to Multiculturalism, (paperback)  by Nancy Palmer Jones and Karin Lin. If you would like to buy the book at a discount rate from the UUA ($19), please email  treasurer@uuberks.org ;with your request by midnight Thursday July 23rd. We plan to discuss chapters 1& 2 in the third week of August.   For more information contact Pat Uribe-Lichty  paturli50@yahoo.com

Picnic & Worship on Sunday July 25

You read that right! The church will host worship outside on July 25th at 10:30. Following the service, we will have a potluck brunch.

Join in at the Pavilion at the West Reading Playground located on 505 Sycamore Rd West Reading, Pa 19611. If attending in person, the site can be accessed by a short sidewalk with roll up road cutin. (see picture). If attending online, you will get the regular zoom link.

For the in person brunch: Church will provide hamburgers/hotdogs/veggie burgers with all the fixings. In the rsvp below, you can sing up to bring something to share.

Make sure to bring chairs or blankets for your family to sit on and in an effort to reduce waste please bring your own plates, cups and utensils to be taken home afterwards and washed.

If the weather forecast is questionable on Sunday we will put out an email by 12 noon on Saturday to cancel the outdoor event.

Questions? Contact Frank and Lisa Wilder

Deadline for attendance sign up is Friday July 23rd. (we need a headcount for food). Visit this link to do so: https://uuberks.org/picnic

New Policy Update as of July 13,2021

Updated Onsite and Offsite Church Gatherings Policy

Please click on the link below for our updated policy on Church gatherings.

Let’s Show Up!– We still need 2 more people

We from FUUBC fly our Pride Flag and “pride” ourselves on our open minds and loving hearts — now we need a few congregants to staff a table at the Pridefest, which is being held in August this year.  There’s very little work involved; it’s basically the ministry of “being there”.

Please contact Melissa at office@uuberks.org if you can help out or sign up here

UU  Berks Websites 
Our church has 2 websites: one is public and one is private. Anyone on the Internet can access our public website at uuberks.org, but you have to be a member of our congregation to access the private UUBerks Member Info site at member-info.uuberks.org. Access is restricted, so you need to login with your email address & password.

What can you find on the UUBerks Member Info site?

  • Email contact information for our staff and all of our committees
  • The current version of the Church Directory, the Member Photo Album, as well as our current budget and board meeting minutes
  • Links to all of our recurring Zoom meetings
  • Help documentation and FAQs

Use the link below to register for either a 1-on-1 help session and/or an introduction to the website via Zoom.  You can also use the form to just post a question about the private Member Info website and request access.


Here are a few common questions and answers:

1)Why do I have to login to access this site?  This site is private and the information on it is for members only. By having a login, we can restrict access to those individuals that are FUUBC members.

2)I attend services all the time but I am not a member. How do I become a member?  We have a page on our public website with all of the details.  See https://uuberks.org/connect/become-a-member/ 

3)I have a Google account, but I don’t remember my password.  (1) Go to the Google login page at accounts.google.com, (2) enter your email address, (3) click on the “next” button and (4) click on the “Forgot password” link.

Are you having trouble connecting to Zoom services?

We have established a Zoom service tech line if you are having trouble logging into our Sunday service. If you do not get an immediate answer, leave a message and your call will be returned momentarily.Dial 484-925-1684.

Giving Options in a time of coronavirus
We know that these are uncertain times and that some of our members and friends are being impacted financially as well as in so many other ways. For those who are able to make a gift or continue to contribute to their pledge, we have added some options. In addition to accepting checks and signing up for electronic giving, you can also now make your gifts from the website and via text. Here are the details:

  • You can now give online on our website UUberks.org by clicking on the online giving tab or clicking
  • You can also give by downloading the GivePlus app on google play and the App store below. You can easily locate our church by zip code 19602

Celebration, Lament, Action – From Sandra’s Study

Recently I heard a colleague describe the congregational work of the coming year as threefold: celebration, lament, action. For many of us, the arrival of summer and Pennsylvania’s reopening mean we have more freedom to gather with friends and family and to participate in activities we love. This time feels celebratory in so many ways. I know that I am grateful to be gathering with friends, family and church members as well as attending more in-person activities.

Yet I recognize that these opportunities and feelings of celebration are not universal for a variety of reasons, and that each of us has been impacted by the traumatic events of the past few years. Those traumas are not behind us but also live in us and our world, and we know there are those who have been and continue to be disproportionately traumatized. This necessitates that we make space in ourselves and our church community for lament. We need places and rituals to give expression to our individual and collective grieving, losses and traumas. We need embodied spiritual practices to heal and build resilience in ourselves and our community.

The third piece of that unfolding work is continued engagement in actions of witness and justice. These actions give expression to our joy and our grief and our commitment to collective liberation. As UUs we are called to cultivate compassion for the suffering in our own lives and in the world and then to transform it into action that changes people’s lived experiences.

Like so many of you, I am eager for us to be able to gather in worship in our building to celebrate, lament and take action. I can’t wait for our ingathering water ceremony in September. This summer we are continuing to develop the multi-platform options that will make that experience as inclusive as possible, ensuring that everyone can participate either virtually or in person. Meanwhile, we have planned some terrific summer worship opportunities, including worship with other congregations.

Yours in faith and love,

Rev. Dr. Sandra Fees

Let It Out!

From the Desk of Ebee Bromely DRE

One of my favorite foods to eat is popcorn.  Popcorn from the microwave, popcorn from a stovetop, one of these days I’ll have popcorn from the movie theater again.

Have you ever made popcorn on the stove before? Have you noticed how in the process of making popcorn – the steam needs a place to go?  My stovetop popper has a few holes in the top of it’s lid that direct the steam out so the popcorn can keep popping and the pressure doesn’t build up.

Those holes are often called vents and they can be oh so useful.  Not just for popcorn.  A few weeks back I was introduced to Vent Diagrams. It’s a collective art project started by educator E.M./Elana Eisen-Markowitz and Rachel Schragis.  You can find out more about it on www.ventdiagrams.com

Here’s the kernel that I’d like to share with you: What would your Vent Diagram(s) look like?

A “Vent Diagram” has two overlapping circles with two statements that appear to be true and appear to be contradictory. The middle is purposefully un-labeled.  This is a practice that can keep us imagining and acting from the overlaps of those two circles.  What right now needs to be vented?

in this time

nadine j. smet-weiss

spiritual director

in this time

of turning

as we emerge


and hesitant

to come together

once again

as if for

the first time

what old skins

will you have shed

what new being

will you bear



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *