UU St. Pete InfoNet: September 15, 2017

This Sunday's Worship Services

Rev. Jack Donovan's picture

Time: 10:30am
Speaker: Rev. Jack Donovan

This Sunday we will celebrate the fall season of Ingathering as a congregation - especially relevant given the whirl and scattering of body, mind and spirit we've experienced with Hurricane Irma.  What or who influences the outcomes in such upheaval?  From where do we receive help in such times?  Pastor Jack

P.S. The service will include a Water Communion - so bring a dram of water from wherever far place you traveled this summer to mix with other waters, to symbolize the connectedness of our wide wide world.



Congratulations! After a year of discussing the WJA offer to buy our parking lot, and after property appraisals, lawyers, three Town Hall meetings, numerous discussion roundtables, Google Group discussion website, visits to the City compliance office, Skype sessions, Parking Lot Central information table, a Board straw vote, and a congregational straw vote – it’s time to vote and move on.

Please take a few minutes to review the documents the Board has provided at our UU St Pete website. The first document is new (Straw Poll results) and the next two documents (Pros/Cons and FAQs) have just been updated:


Please make sure to come to church this Sunday, September 17, for a Special Meeting at 12:00 noon and vote your preference.  Caring for our physical space is important, regardless of what we decide.


Thanks to everyone for supporting the democratic process and our covenant with each other.

Paul Burnore, President

Board of Trustees



Announcements From Pastor Jack

SPECIAL COLLECTION FOR VICTIMS OF HURRICANES HARVEY AND IRMA, this Sunday, September 17:  Please give as generously as you can.

  • 25% of our collection will be for the UU Service Committee to aid grassroots community partners in Texas serving at-risk populations traditionally left out of mainstream response efforts, such as immigrant families (in particular young mothers and their children.
  • 25% will be for the UU Association to aid UU congregations and congregants most affected by Hurricane Harvey (Texas).
  • 25% will be for the UUA to aid UU congregations and congregants most affected by Hurricane Irma (Florida).
  • 25% will be for our UUSP Social Justice Committee to administer to help the hurricane-devastated Immokalee Farm Workers with whom we have often worked before.


Please make your check payable to UU St Pete but put Hurricane Relief in the memo section -- or place cash in the envelopes marked Hurricane Relief.   We would like to send one check to each group as the UU St Pete community to help these efforts.   Thank you!


This Fall’s Wednesday Religious Discussions start September 20, 10am & 7pm (your choice) in the Conway Building lounge.  Our study’s emphasis this fall will be part of becoming better allies, partners, and justice co-workers with those who are without equal rights and opportunity in our community and world – especially people of color, but also many cross-color categories of those left out of “the general Welfare” and “the Blessings of Liberty.” 


Our first study book will be Between the World and Me by the Atlantic national correspondent Ta-Nehisi Coates.  Book quotes will be provided for discussion.  ((Winter and Spring books:  The Covenant With Black America (Tavis Smiley, editor) and The Third Reconstruction: Overcoming the Politics of Division and Fear by Rev. Dr. Wm. J. Barber)).  Please email me to receive the discussion quotes ahead of time if you haven’t previously attended.  Hope to see you there.  Rev. Jack (jfdonovan@bellsouth.net).


UUSP Covenant Group Fair:  On Sunday October 1 after the Service, a Covenant Group table will be set up in Gilmour Hall where you may sign up to participate in one of UUSP’s several covenant groups.  Covenant Groups meet monthly (or more if the group prefers) to deepen acquaintance with and appreciation of one another and of life.  Each meeting includes opportunity for persona sharing, plus discussion of a more general question of life.


Curious About Our Church And Membership?  UU St. Pete exists so we can help and be helped to grow in understanding and caring for our lives and our community.   Care to join?  Visit our Welcome Table after service or speak with Pastor Jack.  And please come to our two Inquirers’ classes, after Sunday service on September 24 and October 1 – share your questions and we’ll share our best answers about UU St Pete and the Unitarian Universalist tradition. 


UUs helping UUs: Need help or know a UUSPer who might?  Please notify Sue Price, UUSP Care Committee chair: sueprice63@gmail.com; 727-290-9910.


Updating The UUSP Calendar:  It’s time!  Please put all your 2017-2018 meetings and events on the church website calendar as soon as possible.  This is very important to avoid scheduling conflicts, to help the office with knowing what space is available for outside rentals, and to help the UUSP Program Council coordinate plans.  2017-2018 has begun!  Happy New Year!  Rev. Jack





Wednesday Religious Studies Reading List for UUSP Fall–Spring Wednesday Discussion Groups


I hope these books will help us as we continue to expand our caring into our wider community, especially with FAST (Faith in Action for Strength Together - an interfaith justice coalition,).  I am hoping that our Wednesday Religious Studies discussions will have time to study at least the first three books this year.  But I’m sure you will find the others compelling, too.


1) Between the World and Me, a father’s letter to his son, by Atlantic national correspondent Ta-Nehisi Coates.

2) The Covenant with Black America, action plans to secure social justice in America, Tavis Smiley, editor (2006)

3) The Third Reconstruction: Overcoming the Politics of Division & Fear, by Rev. Dr. Wm J. Barber II (2016)

4) Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America, by Michael Eric Dyson (2017) 

5) The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, by Michelle Alexander (2010)

6) Whatever It Takes: Geoffrey Canada’s Quest (& the Harlem Children’s Zone), by Paul Tough (2008)

7) Born a Crime, by Trevor Noah (host of The Daily Show) (2016)

8) I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou

9) Waking Up White (and Finding Myself in the Story of Race), Debby Irving (2014)

10) Slavery By Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans (1865-1941), by Douglas A. Blackmon

11) Letter from the Birmingham Jail,  by Martin Luther King, Jr. (1963)

12) Dismantling Racism: A Workbook for Social Change Groups by Kenneth Jones & Tema Okun (2001) (google on-line)

13) www.blacklivesuu.comSee UUWhiteSupremacyTeachIn.

14) Darkwater: Voices from Within the Veil, by W.E.B. DuBois (1920)

15) The Color of Water, by James McBride (1995) – a mixed race son writes of his white mother’s life and his.

16) Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, by Bryan Stevenson (2014) Time’s “Top 10 Nonfiction 2014)

17) Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West, by Dee Brown (1971)

18) Raising Bertie – documentary film on PBS – 8.28/17

19) Unbowed, by Kenyan Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Matthai (2005)

20) A Colony in a Nation, by Chris Hayes (2017)

21) Dreaming Me, by Black Baptist turned Buddhist teacher Jan Willis

Contact: Rev. Jack Donovan



RE Corner

Religious Education for Sunday, September 17:

Nursery age care is provided from 10:15am downstairs in Conway Hall.  Elementary school children will meet with Trish and Joe as usual, after the Water Ceremony.  Youth are encouraged to join in the full worship service.

Contact: Lisa Hill



With sadness, we announce the death of UUSP member Ron Bitten.

Ron died in Hospice care this Wednesday, September 13.  Ron joined UUSP this past March - but spent most of the last months fighting stage 4 cancer with the support of his wife, UUSP member Amanda Conklin.  As a young man, Ron was a social justice activist.  His career was mainly as a reporter and editor for the Tampa Tribune and other area publications.  He loved lots of things - among them, good clear thinking.  A small, family memorial service will be planned for some time in the future.  For now, our love and sympathy to Amanda.


Pastor Jack



Want To Make A Difference You Can See?

Check out the ​Buildings & Grounds Committee!  

Next Meeting September 19, 5:30pm - 7pm - Conway North Room

Whether you don’t know which end of a screwdriver to use or you can build a home from scratch, B&G is looking for YOU!  We have various projects you can enjoy like (1) helping to find and coordinate the best contractors or (2) getting your hands dirty outside on the grounds, or handyman jobs – light painting, electrical, carpentry, etc.  (Yes, that should probably be “handyperson” but we can only carry PC so far.)

We meet the 1st and 3rd Tuesday each month 5:30 – 7:00 PM at the church office.  Stop by and find out what we do!  Request copies of our Minutes be emailed to you.  Join in and brag to your friends about things like a new bookshelf you helped install (provided it stays up, of course …).  Anyway, come on by and find out more!  Fame, glory, fun and more can be yours!

For more info, please email us at uustpete.bg@gmail.com.

Contact: Howard Taylor




Wouldn't it be nice to have flowers on our podiums each Sunday to brighten our church? 

If you would be interested in helping with this project, please sign up after service in Gilmore Hall to bring flowers for specific Sunday(s). Flower arrangements (from a florist or from your garden) can be made in honor of or in memory of someone, and we will note this in the order of service.  If you have any questions, please contact Jim Fitzgerald or Gay Breuler.  Thank you!


Contact: Gay Breuler



Water Bottles Needed!

Do you have extra water bottles that are filling up the back of your cabinet?

As we enter the hottest time of the year, our friends that participate in the Friday Night Picnic not only have a hard time getting access to clean cool water, but rarely have a water bottle to carry with them throughout the day.  Please look for a special collection box during Coffee Hour after Sunday Service to drop off your donation(s).

If you have a source for further donations (the Lost & Found at your workplace/Leftovers from an event) or need further information please contact Courtney Allen.

Contact: Courtney Allen