Category Archives: News

Aspirations by Alison: Toward Healing, Together

My ministry in October has been focused on trauma and healing. Our Southern Oregon UU Partnership community came together with the UU Trauma Response Ministry on October 10th to share our experience of the September wildfires. We learned that so many of the responses we may be experiencing — including irritability, lack of focus, headaches and insomnia — are normal, human responses to an abnormal event. We also learned that we are not alone. We share so much of our experiences of the fires in common, whether we live in Ashland, Klamath Falls, Grants Pass or somewhere in between. We saw that we can provide a community of support and care that stretches across Southern Oregon. At the event on the 10th, we began to discuss the possibility of a weekly, drop-in Zoom meeting for members and friends of all three SOUUP congregations. I was incredibly encouraged to see folks in attendance asking for something that I had been hoping we might one day create — a regular opportunity to experience the love, faith and community which, as Jackie Clement says, “if nurtured…can serve as the very bedrock of our lives.” Stay tuned or be in touch if you’d like to help with or participate in a drop-in community care Zoom with your siblings in faith across Southern Oregon. 

This month, I’ve also lifted up the intergenerational trauma that black folks carry as a result of living with white supremacist oppression in North America for 400 years, and that white folks carry as a result of accepting and perpetrating that oppression. Healing that trauma so we can move forward into something different and better is the focus of Resmaa Menakem’s book My Grandmother’s Hands, which is so much more than the taste I offered you with the help of my friend Kokayi Nosahere at our service on October 11th.  I want to encourage you to read Menakem’s book and use the tools he presents, not just for healing racialized trauma, but for healing any trauma you are holding in your body. Using our breath, our song, and the sway of our body to stay settled and not let our trauma get the best of us can help us process the trauma of wildfire as well as white supremacy. One of the most encouraging messages I took away from Menakem’s book is that healing myself isn’t something I do only for me, but rather contributes to healing our world as well.  

As 2020 winds down, many of us would describe this year as piling trauma upon trauma: COVID 19, so many deaths, living through climate catastrophe, and our deep political divides about to culminate in one of the most significant elections of at least my lifetime. Tools for staying grounded in these times are so essential, and that is a big part of why my ministry this month has been focused on trauma coping. In closing, I’d like to offer you two tools for the weeks ahead. The first is an embodied practice you can use any time, focused on healing trauma through the movements of Tai Chi. I was introduced to this practice in one of my seminary courses, and although it seemed a bit cheesy at first, I’ve returned to it again and again over the past year, along with my five year old daughter, who loves to do these 15 minutes of Tai Chi with me. Every time I revisit this video, I am amazed at how different I feel in my body, mind, and spirit when the 15 minutes are up. 

I also want to make you aware of an offering from UU clergy and congregations across the country to provide spiritual grounding on Election Day, November 3rd. Any time from 7am to 7pm Pacific, you can join the Zoom meeting here (meeting ID: 995 5323 1971, passcode: 954636, find your local dial-in number at https://uuma.zoom.us/u/aeHgtFP7Ry) for as long or short as you like, to find respite, positive energy, peace and spiritual practice on Election Day. As Unitarian Universalists, we understand the democractic process as key to the values and the practice of our faith. What better way to move through this election season than in the company of our siblings in faith? I know I plan to drop in on the 3rd, and I hope you will consider doing the same.  

Finally, please know that I am here to provide you with direct support as well. I am available Tuesday through Sunday to meet by Zoom or by phone, or even just for an email or text message exchange if that’s what you prefer. Email me at intern.minister@rvuuf.org or contact me by voice or text at 541.291.1718.  

–Alison Duren-Sutherland, Intern Minister
Southern Oregon UU Partnership

Let’s start to heal from the trauma of wildfire: Zoom event 10/10 @ 10:30am

Please join members of the UU Trauma Ministry Team and other members and friends of the Southern Oregon UU Partnership (including UU Fellowship of Klamath County, UUs of Grants Pass and Rogue Valley UU Fellowship) on Saturday, October 10 @ 10:30 am via ZOOM for an opportunity to explore the ways in which the recent wildfires have been and are affecting each of us and how we can support each other and those around us during this important time. Whether or not you personally experienced trauma related to the wildfires, your supportive presence can help our community begin to heal.

You are invited to a Zoom meeting with the UU Trauma Response Ministry on Saturday, Oct 10, 2020 at 10:30 am Pacific

You must register in advance for this meeting!
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

The UU Trauma Response Ministry was established in 2002 and has for the past 18 years worked with congregations across the country who have faced a variety of difficult and tragic circumstances including wildfires in southern California, Hurricanes Charlie, Katrina and Maria; the shootings at Tennessee Valley UU Church as well as many other incidents of natural and human made disaster and trauma.  Those who have benefited in the past from the presence of UUTRM report that their work helped greatly, especially through the initial stages of their experiences.  Even those participants who didn’t personally feel as though they needed to talk found that their presence was helpful for others who did.  Please join us for this important conversation.

Question? Email Intern Minister Alison: intern.minister@rvuuf.org.

Southern Oregon Wildfire Relief: You can help!

As the fires still burn, good people throughout this community are taking action to help their neighbors. Our UU siblings at the Rogue Valley UU Fellowship in Ashland, where at least eight families have lost their homes, has published a comprehensive list of ways you can help on their blog HERE, including donations through RVUUF or to community organizations including the MRG fire relief fund which is being administered by local grass-roots groups, and by assisting low-performing GoFundMe campaigns for fire survivors.

The Klamath County Library Services District also has some fire information especially pertinent to those in our area on their website HERE, thanks to UUFKC member Nac Payne. This includes ways to stay abreast of what’s happening with fire activity in our area, ways for folks to get help if they are affected by the fires, and ways that we can help those affected.

Finally, the Klamath Tribes are working hard to participate in relief efforts. Find information in the infographic below for both providing and obtaining assistance for local fire survivors. In addition, relief supplies will be available for pick up by folks affected by the fires on Wednesday & Thursday, September 16th & 17th, 11am-3pm at 204 Pioneer Street in Chiloquin as well as on Monday as shown below.

The Klamath Tribes is still accepting donations at 3949 S. 6th St in K-falls, and via their GoFundMe https://gf.me/u/yx6sc2

White Fragility book Group

Book Group: White Fragility: Why Its So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism

by Robin Diangelo
Many of our members have expressed interest in reading and discussing this book over the summer as we work to become anti-racist. The meetings will happen via Zoom. Meeting links will be sent the week of the meeting.

Tuesday, July 14th, 7:00 pm   Discussion on Chapters 1-4 

Tuesday, July 28  Discussion on Chapters 5- 8

Tuesday, August 11 Discussion on Chapters 9 – 12

White Fragility Reading Group Discussion Guide


Ebook Resource:

Z-lib https://z-lib.org/
This website has lots of ebooks on Anti-racism, including the book White Fragility: Why Its So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism

Small Numbers, Infinite Possibilities (Leadership training)

This is a national training just for small congregations created by the small congregation specialists from all over the UUA.  There are four webinars and one in person meeting. 

A Year of Learning and Connection for Smaller Congregations
Brought to you by your Regional UUA Congregational Life Staff

We know that small congregations are sharing the Love and Grace of Unitarian Universalism with their people and their communities every day. We also know that small churches can be faced with big challenges. Together we can help small congregations reach toward their greatest potential.

Our congregation may participate in:

  • Four Webinars! 
    • Smalls Making a Big Difference Oct. 16 
    • Right Sizing Your Congregation’s Operations Nov. 13
    • Stewardship and Sustainability for the Long Haul Jan. 15  
    • Being Beloved Community Feb. 12
  • Pi Day In-Person Event Near(ish) You! March 14, 2020
    • Why Pi Day? Small number, infinite possibility!
    • Facilitated by our regional staff with a video welcome from UUA president Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray
    • Meet other smaller congregation leaders
    • Meaningful conversations
    • Share support, ideas, and resources
    • Explore opportunities for collaboration and ongoing shared learning
    • Of course, there will be PIE!

For more information see: https://www.uua.org/pacific-western/blog/small-numbers-infinite-possibilities?utm_source=Members&utm_campaign=1d7a4f827a-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_09_06_02_38_COPY_13&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_4fe96110f7-1d7a4f827a-224627873

Recruiting Lay Speakers

First Sunday of the Month–we are recruiting lay speakers!

The theme for lay speakers this year is: What sources of knowledge led to growth and transformation for you? Book, movie, story, source of knowledge, etc. (AKA: What is “scripture” to you?) How does this source inspire you, comfort you, or help you make meaning?

We invite lay speakers from our fellowship to speak on this topic this year. We have reserved the first Sunday of each month for these services.

Other questions you might consider:
What did the source mean to you when you first encountered it? What does it mean to you now?
What do you like about the source? Do you have any criticisms of the source? 
How does this source inform your spiritual practices/personal theology?

We invite you to share a portion of the source with us during the service.

Contact worshipuufkc@gmail.com to volunteer. The Worship Committee is available to help interested volunteers develop their talks.

Immigration Vigil

The Unitarian Universalist Social Justice Committee (UUSJC) will hold an Immigration Vigil to bear witness to the injustice that is happening in ICE detention facilities on Tuesday, July 16th at 6:00 pm, on the sidewalk in front of the Klamath Falls Government Center, 305 Main St. The UUSJC invites the community of Klamath Falls to join their voices calling for an end to family separation at the border, lack of sanitation in detention facilities, and human rights abuses by Customs & Border Patrol and the ICE agency. As a community with the Tulelake Internment Camp so near to us in location and in history, we must speak out against the incarceration of asylum seekers, and say “Never Again!”. A moment of reflection to honor those who have died in ICE custody as well as songs of unity will be shared.
Speakers will talk about resources and actions that we, as a community, can take to support our migrant siblings seeking asylum.   

UUFKC receives the Pickett Award for growth in small congregations!

Members Celebrate

June 4, 2019

Dear Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Klamath County,

We in the Pacific Western Region are delighted to announce that your congregation has been selected to receive the Unitarian Universalist Association 2019 O. Eugene Pickett Award.  This national award is given annually to a small congregation that has made an outstanding contribution to the growth of Unitarian Universalism.  The award comes with a certificate of merit as well as $600 to further your good ministry in the world.

Your congregation has embodied the phrase, “small but mighty”. You lost your building to fire about a decade ago, but did not let that be the end.  You have, like a phoenix, been born anew. In your small and conservative community, you have been showing inspirational growth in participation.  Simple programs, like family game night, have helped you become a welcoming home to many young LGBTQ families in your community.  Your use of social media and engagement with the local newspaper project a joyful image of your work.  You are a visible face of inclusive welcome and social justice in your small Southern Oregon town.  You are living our faith out loud.

Not only do you care for your community, you are well connected with the larger faith.  You make good use of UUA resources, from leadership trainings to educational resources.   You are active in SOUUP, the Southern Oregon UU Partnership, working with other small town UU congregations in your part of the state. And you are an honor congregation, reliable in contributing your fair share to the larger association.

Thank you for the good ministry you are doing.  It is an honor for us all to walk with you in this important work.

Blessing,
Rev. Sarah Schurr
Pacific Western Region – Unitarian Universalist Association

The Rev. O. Eugene Pickett was president of the UUA from 1979 to 1985. Ordained in 1952, he served as minister of congregations in Florida, Virginia, and Georgia, as well as the Church of the Larger Fellowship. He is minister emeritus of the UU Congregation of Atlanta and the CLF and now lives on Cape Cod with his wife, church musician Helen Pickett.