In the Interim – March 2020

Dear beloved OBUUC community. How are you? How are you handling this unsettling time? Are you taking care of yourselves? Are you taking care of each other? These and so many other similar questions are racing through my heart and mind right now as I, and we, figure out how to love and be community together in this time of Coronavirus.

Some of you may have seen this poem I posted on FB written by my colleague Rev. Lynn Unger. It so sums up what I want to hold in my heart right now as we learn how to keep distance and stay connected at the same time.


What if you thought of it
as the Jews consider the Sabbath—
the most sacred of times?
Cease from travel.
Cease from buying and selling.
Give up, just for now,
on trying to make the world
different than it is.
Sing. Pray. Touch only those
to whom you commit your life.
Center down.

And when your body has become still,
reach out with your heart.
Know that we are connected
in ways that are terrifying and beautiful.
(You could hardly deny it now.)
Know that our lives
are in one another’s hands.
(Surely, that has come clear.)
Do not reach out your hands.
Reach out your heart.
Reach out your words.
Reach out all the tendrils
of compassion that move, invisibly,
where we cannot touch.

Promise this world your love–
for better or for worse,
in sickness and in health,
so long as we all shall live.

–Lynn Ungar 3/11/20

Your staff has been busy putting together plans and ways for us to stay connected here at OBUUC. We’re learning this as we go. Some of this is still in progress but here is where we are now.

  1. We will use our usual communication methods to stay in touch – church email, website, FB page and group. So watch carefully for emails. If you have access to FB, sign up to join the OBUUC group.
  2. We will be using a platform called ZOOM for online meetings, gatherings, and worship. You can download a free version though you will still be able to connect without it via links we will send.
  3. We will be posting a tutorial about how to use Zoom on our website and in the FB group.
    Worship – each week we will post on the website an online worship service that you can access anytime during the week.
  4. Also, at 10 a.m. on Sunday morning we will have a ZOOM worship that you can join – we will have a chalice lighting, readings and a time for joys and sorrows. Watch for emails soon with links and direction for accessing these. We will also post links to other UU congregations who live stream their worship services.
  5. Starting next week I will host a one hour ZOOM room for drop in Coffee Hour time and chat and check in. We will send the link to that via email.
  6. Omega – will be developing some small group gatherings via ZOOM – watch for email about those
  7. Leann – will be developing online programming for RE, families, and children.
  8. We know that not all our beloveds have online access and email. We are setting up a phone tree and process to reach out and connect with those folks. If you would like to help and be part of that please let me or Brenda know. And if you know people who should be on that tree let us know that too.
  9. The vote for the Settled Minister Search Committee. We are in the process of developing an online method for conducting that vote. We hope to have that out to you first thing next week via email. Watch for it.
    And. If you have more thoughts, or ideas, or ways we can stay connected please let us know. We are in this together.

The important thing is to reach out. Stay connected. Let us know if you need anything. If you need groceries or whatever. If you just need someone to talk to. Certainly, let us know if you or loved ones become ill.

I have so much love for all of you and this congregation.

“Center down.

And when your body has become still,
reach out with your heart.
Know that we are connected”