by Alfred K. LaMotte

I voted

I voted for the rainbow 

I voted for the cry of a loon

I voted for my grandfather’s bones
That feed beetles now

I voted for a singing brook that sparkles
   under a North Dakota bean field.

I voted for the salty air through which the whimbrel flies
South along the shores of two continents 

I voted for the melting snow that returns to the wellspring of
    darkness, where the sky is born from the earth.

I voted for the daemonic mushrooms in the loam
    and the old democracy of worms

I voted for the wordless treaty that cannot be broken
by white men or brown, because it is made of star semen,
    thistle sap, hieroglyphs of the weevil in prairie oak.

I voted for the local, the small, the brim
    that does not spill over, the abolition of waste,
    the luxury of enough.

I voted for the commonwealth of the ancient forest
    a larva for every beak, a wing-tinted flower 
    for every moth’s disguise, a well-fed mammal’s corpse
    for every colony of maggots.

I voted for open borders between death and birth

I voted on the ballot of a fallen leaf of sycamore 
    that cannot be erased, for it becomes the dust and rain,
    and then a tree again.

I voted for more fallow time to cultivate wild flowers 
    more recess in schools to cultivate play,
    more leisure, tax free, more space between days.

I voted to increase the profit of evening silence
    and the price of a thrush song

I voted for ten million stars in your next inhalation.

Submitted by Wendy Condrat

WUUC 2020 Auction Fundraiser & Party, Nov. 14-21

WUUC 2020 Auction Fundraiser & Party, Nov. 14-21

Preview night, Nov. 14, 7-8 p.m. live (Zoom)- introduction of the virtual auction (SIMPLE auction website info/instructions), — plus our Auctioneers, Rob Katz & John Villasenor, will open bidding for one live auction item (test run for Nov. 21)

Virtual auction, Nov. 14-21 – online bidding anytime, 8pm Nov. 14- noon, Nov. 21,   – bidders will receive email updates about their bid status

Live Auction & Party, Nov. 21, 7-8:30 p.m. (Zoom) 19-20’s holodeck Party & live auction with musical entertainment and break-out groups for gabbing & mingling

Donations needed by Nov. 7  — donate your knitting, canning, baking, brewing, and the spate of books you’ve read; dinner delivered, online games night, socially distanced summer escape. … For info, ideas, and updates see the weekly WUUC Auction email announcements OR contact the auction team at auctionteam@wuuc.org

ASJ Special Collections Update – Your Money Supports Our Values!

By Cora Goss-Grubbs and Pam Green, Co-Chairs
We are delighted to report that last month we collected $1,455 to add to the Black Student and Families Fund (BSAFF). This money, along with WUUC volunteers, assists the families of students in the Northshore School District with a variety of needs – from essentials of food and shelter, to monthly bills and car repairs, to community organizing and support for future dreams including college and career development.

Your contributions will fund programs and services with the goal of providing a safe environment for students to explore and express their identity as they navigate the racial constructs of their world.

Our special collection on Nov. 20 will be for TRUUsT (Transgender Religious professional UUs Together), an organization of trans Unitarian Universalists who are living out a call to ministry within Unitarian Universalism. Its mission is to advocate for the gifts, safety, liberation, and leadership of trans religious professionals in Unitarian Universalist ministries and institutions. Nov. 20 is also Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day to memorialize those who have been murdered as a result of transphobia. Please consider making a financial contribution to TRUUsT on this important day.

Team Trees Update: One of the organizations we dedicated a 2019-2020 ASJ special collection to recently announced that they raised enough to plant 22.3 million trees across six continents. That’s a lot of trees! Curious to hear more about Team Trees and what they’ve been up to? Watch this short video: https://youtu.be/myPgz2RRdok

As always, the ASJ Committee thanks WUUC members and friends for their generous support of our monthly special collections, which take place during services on the third Sunday of every month. Instructions for giving are posted during the service, and you can also donate anytime the following week at https://onrealm.org/wuuc/-/give/now, or by sending a check to WUUC at P.O. Box 111, Woodinville, WA 98072. Please make checks out to WUUC and write “ASJ Special Collection” in the notes.

Theme: Healing

What Does it Mean to Be a People of Healing?

If your body won’t do what it used to, for right now let it be enough.

If your mind won’t stop racing or can’t think of the word, let it be enough.

If you are here utterly alone and in despair, be all that here with us.

If today you cannot sing because your throat hurts or you don’t have the heart for music, be silent. …

The world won’t stop spinning on her axis if you don’t rise to all occasions today.

Love won’t cease to flow in your direction,

your heart won’t stop beating,

all hope won’t be lost…
Rev. Vanessa Southern

Often we hunger for healing but don’t know what it will take to make our way there. The goal is elusive. The path is unclear.

Rarely, if ever, are any of us healed in isolation. Healing is an act of communion.
bell hooks

But what if the work is to travel toward our suffering? What if proximity to pain, not distance from it, is the real route to healing?

When we hold our suffering in a way that opens us to greater compassion, heartbreak becomes a source of healing, deepening our empathy for others who suffer and extending our ability to reach out to them.  – Parker Palmer

Remember that healing words aren’t always easy or immediately comforting. Sometimes the words we need to hear the most are the ones that are hard to hear or grab us by the shoulders and shake us awake.

The truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart. Then they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that. The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy.
Pema Chödrön

Until we widen our view and notice that there are circumstances wounding us both, the painful gap between us will never heal.
Rev. Kaaren Anderson

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.
Wendy Mass

  *   *   *  

Each month, WUUC is exploring a theme suggested by the UUA program Soul Matters.  Materials are provided for small groups and for worship themes related to each topic.  The reflections above are from those materials, and compiled by Linda Sherry.

Worship Team Update:  Creativity as Worship, Art as Ministry

Worship Team Update: Creativity as Worship, Art as Ministry

By Donna Johnson and Karen Hyams

Art: The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power. ‘(Oxford Dictionary)

“The foremost reason that artists create, and the rest of us value their art, is because art forms a priceless living bridge between the everyday psychology of our minds and the universal spirit of humanity…….This is the thing: art comes from the heart and, likewise, speaks to the heart; but this asks something of the witness, too, a kind of emotional and spiritual sensitivity with which to receive the generous gift of the artist.” (Larry Culliford, Spiritual Wisdom for Secular Times)

We are blessed to have writers, musicians and artists who encourage one another, who collaborate, and who contribute to Sunday Service every week. Knowing what music you love, what captured your eye while you were hiking, or what stories you have to tell lets us see you. These shared insights enrich our worship services with art’s “emotional power” and ability to help us “bridge to the universal spirit of humanity.” The creative gifts we share are making new connections, inspiring others to express themselves and share their own perspectives, and contributing to our identity as a community. That is a ministry.

For the past months, we have been using the art of WUUC members and friends during the service to enhance our meditation and musical experiences. Now, we are also sharing this art as part of a slide show in the 10 minutes before the service starts each week – the Zoom version of the art that we used to enjoy in the foyer when we were having services in the sanctuary. Thank you to those who have sent in their work. As creative people, we get to show who we are, what we are obsessed with, how we are doing in the moment we are creating, and what matters to us.

Visual Arts Ministry

This re-forming team has a new focus now that our gallery is virtual. The participation of our congregation is unprecedented and inspiring. If you’d like to work on this exciting project with creative people (who are always fun) send a message to Marlene Katz mkatz@wuuc.org

How to Contribute images and video

Best way: Upload files to the graphics folder in Drive, make sure they are named correctly. You can edit names in Drive after uploading.

Graphics Folder

Other way: Email graphic files to Marlene Katz, mkatz@wuuc.org

To Contribute Music, contact Brad Hull, bhull@wuuc.org

What we are looking for:

Original Photos: Nature, Landscape, moody, inspiring, calming, pets, people, coffee, funny

Sometimes we’ll send out a request for a theme.

Original Artwork: any medium, any PG subject but we are especially fond of kid artwork, pet portraits, and kid pet portraits.

Photographing artwork is tricky, try to avoid shadows and glare, and get as close as you can. Make sure the image is big enough; a general guide is Horizontal (landscape) – 1,024 x 512 Vertical (portrait) – 800 x 1,200 Most smartphones do fine.

What happens next:

New files organized

We will use them when it is appropriate for the context. We may contact you asking for permission to use your image in a graphic for church. We don’t know when we’ll use your contribution, but we hope we can use them all.

Credits and Releases:

Your original work only

If you wish to be credited, name your files with your name & the title. 

Khyams frog.jpg is a good example. 

Make sure you have everyone’s permission to publish photos that they are in. Photo release forms are required for children.