January 2007

Sunday Worship

Services begin at 9:30

The Point

Newsletter of the Universalist Unitarian Church

Waterville, Maine - 873-4006



Rev. Severn Towl. Minister

Sue Cook, President


January  7th       Like a Watered Garden

January 14th      The Lessons of Kwanzaa

                          (Martin Luther King Day)

January 21st      A Banner Year

January 28th      Marginality

                          Lay Service



From Severn

I though it might be time to remind everyone of a few bits of information about what I do. There are a number of new people, and it never hurts for long-time members to get an occasional reminder as well. My day off is Monday. Please try not to call me then, unless of course it’s an emergency. Other times it’s all right to call me at home, since I do a lot of my “paper work” there. I also check the church phone at least once a day.


I am available to you for conversation about personal issues, church issues (joys as well as concerns), about spiritual needs-questions-paths-ideas, or especially if you are new, just to get acquainted. I am not a therapist, so don’t do long term counseling, but certainly can see someone a number of times until a scheduled therapy appointment can be arranged.


Though my minister’s discretionary fund is rarely huge, it is always just as available to church folk as it is to the folks in the larger community. PLEASE ASK – no one knows but me.


If there is a topic you would like to hear my reflections on on a Sunday. Don’t hesitate to let me know. I love to know I am speaking on something you want, and I love a challenge!




President’s Message

At this giving time of year, please take a moment to think about those organizations that you would like our First Sunday Plate Collections to support over the coming year. We know that members of our congregation are active with many different charitable organizations. We have enclosed a ballot for you to provide ideas to the Board, so that we all can contribute toward the important work that these organizations provide our community.


With best wishes to you and your family in the New Year.   Sue Cook




Remember to give Marilyn Wheeler your checks for the UU Service Committee’s Guest at Your Table program. Make checks out to the UUSC. We have been substantial givers for many years, between $800 and $1000! Let’s keep up our support for all the good work they do.



After Church Program

Severn is willing to offer the five-week program called Articulating Your UU Faith after service starting this month. If you are interested, please leave a note on Severn’s desk. There will need to be a minimum of six people.



Among Ourselves

As of this writing, Ray Rogers is still at Lakewood for rehabilitation after badly breaking his ankle in a fall. Cards and an occasional visit are welcomed.


Also we hope that by now Emily Wheeler’s bumps and bruises are healed after her car accident.




Children’s Meditation Group

A monthly meditation group for children, or children’s “sangha” as it is called in the Buddhist tradition, will start on Saturday, January 27th, 7;30-11:00 A.M.


In the style of the beloved Vietnamese Buddhist teacher Thicht Nhat Hanh, the group will include: simple meditation exercises (listening, breathing, eating meditations); practice in mindfulness; discussions related to such topics as compassion, our connection with all things (“interbeing”) and kindness in children’s everyday lives; songs; and Buddhist stories which are lively and poignant.


Children ages 5-12 and their parents are welcome to come. If there is interest from teenagers, we would consider starting a second group, as the format would be somewhat different.. We will generally meet on the last Saturday of each month on the second floor of the church. Some rescheduling will be done to accommodate school vacation.


Facilitators will be Meg Dellenbaugh and Miranda Ring. Meg has been a member of the Order of Interbeing (lay people who are students of Thicht Nhat Hanh) since 1995 and has longtime experiences leading Buddhist study and meditation groups for children and adults as well as wilderness trips that incorporate mindfulness and meditation.


Miranda is a child/family clinical psychologist with many years of study and practice of Buddhism.


If you are interested and/or would like more information, please call Miranda at 873-0689



Christmas Baskets

Our Christmas baskets were slightly strange this year. The Salvation Army asked that they be delivered on December 12th, a full twelve days before Christmas! Visions of melting turkeys danced in our heads! 


We made the decision to buy gift cards so that recipients could choose when and what to buy for the holiday. Twenty-five gift cards were attached to boxes of candy canes and delivered to the Christmas Castle. It was very easy! One light-ish banana box instead of twenty-five definitely heavy banana boxes!


Our crack Holiday Basket Team was able to stand down and Ray Rogers didn't have to get out of his hospital bed to help. Thanks go out to Jay Rogers and Ed Spear for their input. 


The Salvation Army tells us that our church donates more holiday boxes than any other organization or individual.  Thanks to everyone! Maili



January Nursery

Thanks to the following adults taking a turn this month as support for our nursery babysitter.


January 7 Lisa Lichterfeld

January 14 Lisa Covey

January  21 Sarah Webster

January  28 Scott Price



First Sunday of the Month Plate

December 2006

A check for $262 was sent to the Hospice Volunteers of Waterville.



First Sunday of the Month Plate Donations for 2007

Since 2005, our plate donations (non-pledge contributions) on the first Sunday of each month have been designated to support a charitable organization of the congregation’s choosing.


We are enclosing a ballot in the January Point so members of the congregation can choose the organizations to receive our First Sunday of the Month Plate donations for 2007.


We want to focus on local organizations that serve people so we ask you to choose groups serving people in Kennebec and Somerset Counties first. Other organizations may be chosen but will be added only if we need to fill out the year.


If you are stumped for choices, please keep in mind our own Minister's Discretionary Fund. This fund is used for local people who need help with everything from food and rent to heating oil and is often low.


Please fill in three choices, #1 being your number one choice, etc. etc.


We will count the ballots that have been returned in two weeks.


Organizations will be chosen by the number of votes they receive, then who gets what when will be determined by drawing months and organizations at random.


We will publish our "Giving Calendar" for 2007 in next month's Point.



The Board of Trustees

January 28th Lay Service

Lay Service speaker Bill Walsh lives in Waterville with his partner, David Vaughan. Bill is a member of The First Congregational Church of Waterville, United Church of Christ and is active in Youth Ministry in the U.C.C. on the local and state level.


In his free time, Bill works as an accountant in Portland and is a student at Bangor Theological Seminary in the Master of Divinity Program.


His topic, Marginality, will focus upon
how are we called to action to change the church in response to our growing diverse, multi-cultural society and why  we should be moved to a new understanding where we will seek not to unify, but to harmonize




Welcoming Congregation

Looking ahead to the new year, members of the Welcoming Congregation are in the process of creating a trifold explaining the intent and objectives of the Welcoming Congregation; when completed, it will be placed in the pamphlet rack in the church entrance.


The committee is additionally planning to host a Second Hour program which will address a GLBT  (gay/lesbian/ bisexual/ trangender) issue in the context of current events. Topics may include same sex marriage/civil unions, parenting (consider Mary Cheny) and adoption.


Members of the committee are hoping to faciliate a teen RE class this spring and then perhaps plan or lead a Lay Service in the summer or early fall.


If any of you would like to learn more about Welcoming Congregation, please see any of the following committee members:


Ellie Adams                   Erik Nickerson

Carol Basen                  Bruce O’Donnell

Peter Burgher                Severn Towl

Katherine Kusiak-Carey  Maria Timberlake

Jan Mathieu                   Ray/Connie Winship





First Sunday of the Month Plate

Ballot Nominations Form


Please fill in three choices, #1 being your number one choice, etc. etc.


We want to focus on local organizations that serve people so we ask you to choose groups serving people in Kennebec and Somerset Counties first. Other organizations may be chosen but will be added only if we need to fill out the year.


1. _______________________________


2. ______________________________




Please return this ballot to the Sunday collection plate, or leave in the President’s mail slot in the church mail box at the bottom of the stairs.




No RE on Sunday, January 14th, MLK Day

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