June 2016 Connection


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Issue No. 1906

Venice, FL

June 2016


Sundays at UUCOV

Sunday Services: 10:00am

June 5, 2016: "Imagination: Religious, Spiritual, and Otherwise"

Rev. Khleber Van Zandt. Words and language can bring people together or tear them apart. Often we let the "misplaced concreteness" of our own definitions keep us from experiencing the poetry of our lives. Paying attention to the various forms of imagination available to us may open up new ways of experiencing the world around us.

June 12, 2016: "Covenant, Not Creed"

Rev. Khleber Van Zandt. Our Unitarian and Universalist traditions preclude our use of creedal statements and offer us instead the pathway covenant to form our congregations. How true to these traditions are we today?

June 19, 2016: "Women of Distinction: Olympia Brown"

Rev. Khleber Van Zandt. Among our most powerful forebears is the first woman ordained by a major denomination, Olympia Brown, a Universalist minister and early suffragette who blazed a path that many sisters have since followed.

June 26, 2016: "Make Your Own Sunday: Summertime Memories"

Be prepared to raise your hand for a turn with the microphone. Following the service, weâ??ll have a â??Make Your Own Tacoâ? lunch; watch Happenings for details.


Adult RE: Asta Linder House Rm. A

June 5, 2016, 09:00am: "Skeptics and Believers: Kant - Religion and Moral Reason"

Follow Immanuel Kant's reasoning as he seeks a way beyond the rational-empirical impasse. A Great Courses lecture and discussion facilitated by Dan Hadley.

June 12, 2016, 09:00am: "Skeptics and Believers: Kant, Romanticism, and Pietism"

Kant's revolutionary ideas were extremely influential and remain so today, but they raised many questions for 19th-century religious thinkers. A Great Courses lecture and discussion facilitated by Brad Jenkins.

June 19, 2016, 09:00am: "Skeptics and Believers: Schleiermacher - Religion and Experience"

Often called the father of modern theology, Friedrich Schleiermacher was deeply influenced not only by Kant, but also by Romantic and pietist views of religious experience. A Great Courses lecture and discussion facilitated by Brad Jenkins.

June 26, 2016, 09:00am: "Skeptics and Believers: Hegel - Religion, Spirit, and History"

Learn how the views of Schleiermacher and Kant were challenged by those of G. W. F. Hegel, which stressed our conceptual, not just experiential, knowledge of God and sought to overcome the static rationalism of the Enlightenment. A Great Courses lecture and discussion.

Special Offering

June 12, 2016: Laurel Civic Association

The Laurel Civic Association provides support for the elderly and families through education and social activities. They also provide access to safe affordable housing and act as a catalyst in offering services with an overall positive and permanent effect on the community and the residents. If you write a check, please make it out to "UUCOV", with "Laurel Civic Assoc" in the memo line.

Minister's Corner

Committees, Commitment, Conflict

committeeI was given a huge gift a few days ago and it turned out to be something I wasn’t even aware I needed.

A parishioner had made an appointment to see me but hadn’t said what he wanted to talk about. When he arrived, he said he had a sense that there might be something amiss in our relationship, that there might be some unspoken tension between us, and if that was true, he wanted to see if we could work it out.

I was taken aback. I attend a lot of committee and Council and Board meetings, and I know a lot of you do, too. This man’s question to me helped me realize that I don’t always pay enough attention to the particulars of who might be feeling what in any given meeting. Sometimes I become more focused on the outcomes of discussions rather than on the process of the discussion itself. I can become so focused on outcomes that I too often miss the possibility that someone might take away bad feelings from a meeting.

Yes, it’s a lot for any one person to pay attention to, but on reflection it seems vitally important to who we are as a congregation and to everything we do together.

For any committee or council or board to reach its full potential, the assembled individuals need, first and foremost, to trust one another. If they don’t, they won’t be able to be vulnerable enough to participate fully in the deliberations.

Of course we need to trust each other individually, but we also we need to trust that everybody around the table is committed to the organization and to its ultimate goals. Consequently, goals need to be stated clearly and up front. As long as the goals of the congregation or any requisite portion of it are ambiguous, it makes it difficult if not impossible for any of us to fully commit.

And one more thing: whenever committed people gather to talk about furthering the goals of the congregation, conflict is inevitable. When conflict is suppressed, we are left with an artificial harmony that invites anxiety to remain just below the surface and to flow further out into the organization.

Conversely, when healthy conflict is encouraged, participants know they can bring their passions to each question, and then when a decision is made - no matter how it turns out - they can bring their passions to seeing the decision implemented.

I am grateful to my fellow congregant for offering me the opportunity to move past an artificial harmony and to work toward deepening his and my relationship. In the end, if our primary goal is to build a Beloved Community – and I firmly believe it is - then this is incredibly important.

Which means that you and I have some work to do together.

See you in church,


How to Contact Us

Mailing Address: UUCOV
1971 Pinebrook Road
Venice, Fl 34292-1563

Website: www.uucov.org

Minister: Rev. Khleber Van Zandt V
Phone: 314-223-0551
Office hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday 10:00am-1:00pm
Email or phone anytime to meet at a different time.

Office Administration: Nan Kritzler
Phone: 941-485-2105
Office hours: Monday - Friday 10:00am -Noon

Music Director: Steve Hanson
Phone: 630-346-1842

From the Board

President's Message June 2016

LyonDave150Your Board of Trustees has ambitiously set 12 Goals! Yes, 12.

Our clever VP, Linda Underwood, then aligned these goals to support the UUCOV Mission Statement as follows:

Responsibility to be open and welcoming to a diverse people
Goal: Improve the welcoming nature of our lanai: noise abatement & appearance
Goal: Improve communication & transparency throughout UUCOV
Goal: Explore our facility needs now and in the near future in relation to our mission

Growth of the human spirit and search for truth and meaning
Goal: Strengthen ties to other spiritual communities for the purpose of further understanding other faiths and our own.
Goal: Enhance focus on our mission & vision statement to strengthen congregation priorities

Participation in both social and community affairs
Goal: Strengthen regional ties with UU churches to facilitate learning, sharing, and strengthening common social justice efforts.
Goal: Continue to strengthen support to our community through adult learning opportunities.
Goal: Assess our programs to increase focus and depth of congregation involvement.

Goal: Implement and utilize Powerchurch data system to improve membership services.
Goal: Explore leadership development opportunities.
Goal: Develop clear job descriptions for volunteer positions.
Goal: Implement a 12 month stewardship program

Whew! Ambitious? Did one of these reach out to you? Can you help on any of these goals? Are you on a committee that can achieve or assist in reaching one of these goals? This is a great opportunity for our entire congregation to make a difference for UUCOV. Let’s work together and make them happen.

Dave Lyon

Congregational Life

From Jen Dant, Our Community Minister


DantJenniferSmThere is power in a story. During my years as a nurse practitioner I discovered this. I may or may not have been able to assist in solving a physical problem but time after time I heard, “This is the first time anyone has listened” and some level of healing happened. This is what I love about chaplaincy. Day after day I get to witness others finding hope and meaning in telling their story out loud. Together we discover transformation and healing even when there is no cure. As a spiritual companion I see over and over that our deepest need is to be connected, to be seen and to be heard by others.

I believe this is a reason why so many folks show up for church on a Sunday morning. We all want to know that there is a place we belong. In our congregations and fellowships we are seen and heard. The Zulu people greet one another by saying “I see you.” The other person responds, “I am here.” The task of community ministry is to take this message into our wider community. It is why we show up in our Standing On the Side of Love yellow shirts, and at marches, and write checks, and vote, and get involved beyond our church walls. When we show up and engage in the world we offer the radical message to others that each and everyone one of us is important. As your affiliated community minister I look forward to engaging and learning with all of you. I see you...I am here.

In Peace, Chaplain Jen

A Very Important Part of My Life

(Bill Dowling speaks about his decision to become a Legacy Friend)

I became a member of the Legacy Friends a few years after I joined UUCOV. There were a couple of good reasons why I did so. The church and its members had become a very important part of my life, spiritually and emotionally; and I wished to express my appreciation through the legacy program. I also appreciated the essential financial support provided by early church members to the success of this congregation and I wished to continue this support in the future.

I have UUCOV in my will and I am researching a life insurance policy with UUCOV as the beneficiary.

New Alcohol Policy

Effective immediately, UUCOV will not be serving alcohol at congregation-sponsored events. This change has been brought about by the concern expressed by members of the congregation as to liability issues, both to the congregation and to the servers. After careful review of both county/state regulations and insurance requirements, the Board of Trustees has decided that at appropriate events a “BYOB” invitation will be included.
When others are renting our facility, they are responsible and can decide how they wish to proceed in regards to the serving of alcohol. Events that take place at a restaurant will follow the alcohol service license of the facility.

The Board of Trustees has the authority to alter this policy on a case by case basis. Teams wishing to serve alcohol are invited to make a request to the Board in a timely fashion to allow the Board time to consider the request. If approved, it will be necessary to secure a permit and insurance coverage.
This policy does not seek to damper the fun of any event. In fact, some members/friends already have utilized the BYOB option to events, giving you the opportunity to enjoy yourself with the beverage of your choice.

Celebrate the Solstice

SolsticeThe summer season is almost upon us, the days will be at their longest before beginning to shorten again. This is a magical time called Litha and UUCOV will be having an event to celebrate it!

We’ll meet Monday, June 20 to welcome summer with food, fun, and friends! Join us! The potluck begins at 6:00pm, followed by a simple pagan worship at 7:00 and a bonfire after with fellowship and fun.. Please bring your own tableware. Sign up by emailing Stephanie Zoernack at or leave a message at (941) 492-6098. Let us know if you will be attending either or both the potluck/worship, and what you plan to bring for the feast.

Wishes DO Get Granted

Big Big thanks to Tru Pearl, our first fairy godmother, who saw “teal large-print hymnals” on the Wish List and has granted the purchase of three of them.

Lifespan Education

Message from our Director of Religious Education, Jaye Williams

WilliamsJaye250Connie Goodbread, UUA staff member serving the Southern Region on the Congregational Life Staff Team, , led a UUCOV-hosted “Teaching As Relationship” workshop for DREs and those involved in all aspects of religious education. Congregants and leaders from around the state participated. It was a powerful and thought provoking day.
From Connie, we learned the Mantra of the Southern Region

Faith Development is all we do.
Unitarian Universalism is the faith we teach.
The congregation is the curriculum.

Over the summer, I will share various sources and ideas Connie presented as it relates to RE learning and teaching; among them is James Fowler's Stages of Faith. Here are the summary descriptive words for each, but I encourage you to explore these stages online to better understand them.

Stage 0 - (birth to 2 yrs.) Love and Trust
Stage 1 - (ages 3-7) Trusting and Loving
Stage 2 - (7-12, mostly) Truth
Stage 3 - (12-adulthood) Proof of Truth
Stage 4 - (mid-20's-late 30's) My Own Truth
Stage 5 - (mid-life crisis) Truth is a Difficult Concept
Stage 6 - All Truth is One Truth

How many of these stages have you already moved through ? How might our RE programming for all age levels support faith development?

Youth Religious Education

On April 24th, all those who have devoted their time and talent to the UUCOV YRE program over the past school year were recognized. Each volunteer received a set of UUCOV prayer beads that been selected and strung by our children. The lessons and love imparted by our volunteers to our children radiate far beyond our UUCOV property and UUCOV community. You are changing the world. Thank you!!!!


Our Spring field trip, led by Karen Griffin, took our YRE program to Jelk's Preserve. A recent controlled burn allowed for the children to learn why fire is a necessary part in the cycle of a healthy forest. New growth had already begun in some areas reinforcing the lesson fire actually restores a forest.


Understanding Linguistics: The Science of Language

LanguageLinguistics is the study of human language, the mechanisms that we use to put words together. On June 1, we start a 14-week Great Course, meeting Wednesdays 7-9pm. The video lectures, followed by a discussion facilitated by Charlotte Neagle, cover how social class, gender and race determine the differences in how we speak the language and how language changes over time. Learn how bilingualism has simplified English. Conversation reflects rules we have internalized and consists mostly of commands and requests rather than statements. And all of this varies by culture.

What is a Chaplain?

chaplainWhen you hear the term, do you imagine either a military officer delivering dreaded news or an unwanted visitor to your hospital room seeking to pray with you?

Actually, chaplains do much, much more than that Bonnie Norton is hosting three Tuesday sessions in which you’ll discover the varied roles professional Chaplains of all faiths, including UU's, play in our communities. Each session will include a video presentation followed by discussion. June 14, 21, and 28, 1:30-3:00pm in the sanctuary.

Intervening with Native American Cultures

cheyenneOn Thursday, June 9, 1-2:30pm in Asta Linder House, Ann Warner will talk of her experiences as a missionary working on the Northern Cheyenne reservation in Montana. She will address the possibility that, though motivated by an intention to offer assistance and support, a dominant culture might instead cause harm. Ann will be bringing some artifacts to show.

For those wishing to do some advance reading, Ann suggests authors Sherman Alexie and Corry Ten Boom.

Day Trip: A Manatee “Hall of Fame” Man

crosley-pupPowel Crosley, American entrepreneur and inventor* credited with many ‘firsts’ is being honored in Manatee with six sites of community exhibitions; on Tuesday, June 14th, we’ll visit some of them, including a guided tour of the Manatee Agricultural Museum and Palmetto Historical Park, and have lunch. Group will meet in UUCOV parking lot at 9:15am. Email if you would like to come.

*radios & radio stations, non-electric refrigerator, first refrigerator w. door shelves, first lights on a baseball field, news broadcasts, disc brakes, and many more.

Spiritual Fellowship

As is our custom, drop-In meetings will be held during the summer and are open to anyone. If you are curious about the “SFG program” and would like to attend without first joining a group, or your group is on hiatus for the summer, or you would just like to join in a discussion, please feel free to attend a summer meeting. The first Drop-In Meeting will be held in Waters Hall from 1-3pm on Thursday, June 16. Carol Wolfers will facilitate and the topic will be ‘Commitment’. Drop In meetings will also be held the third Thursday of July, August and Sept, each with a different facilitator and topic

UU You 2.0 Finishes

The last meeting of this group will be on Thursday, June 9, 6-8pm; topic is ‘The Threshold’, Part Six of “A House for Hope”.

Aging Well, With Optimism Continues

dancing-peopleA continuation of video lectures and discussion. Mondays, June 6-27, 5-6:30pm, Asta Linder, facilitated by Marianne Lombard.

As we get older, we discover changes in how our bodies move and behave. Using a Great Course series presented by Dr. Kimberlee Bethany Bonura, PhD in Educational Psychology, this series will cover topics including: Self Care, Motivation, Attitude, Chronic Pain/Illness, Sleep and Stress Relief.

A Summer History Discussion Forum

UUCOV and the Venice Area Historical Society continue to present 4 more forums focusing on the South after the Civil War. The monthly meetings will take place at UUCOV on the first Tuesday of the month, 2 pm; Brad Jenkins, and others, will present overall material prior to discussion. Readings on each topic are suggested, but not a requirement. The books are available through the library system and from Amazon.

JenkinsDiscussionTuesday, June 7, 2:00 PM, “Farming on Shares, 1865-1960”
James a Agee and Walker Evans, Cotton Tenants: Three Families, 2013.
James Agee and Walker Evans, Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, 1939.
Bradford Jenkins, So I Sung to Myself, Southern Exposure (Spring, 1979).
Dale Maharage and Michael Williamson, And Their Children After Them, 1990.

Tuesday, July 5, 2:00 PM, “Black Life in the South, 1900-1960”
DuBois, W.E.B. The Souls of Black Folk, 1903.
Gaines, Ernest J. The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, 1971.
Rosengarten, Theodore. All God's Dangers: The Life of Nate Shaw, 1974.
Wright, Richard. Black Boy, 1945.

Tuesday, August 2, 2:00 PM, “Miss Scarlet's South”
Edwards, Anne. The Road to Tara: The Life of Margaret Mitchell, 2014.
Mitchell, Margaret. Gone with the Wind, 1936.
Pyron, Darden. Southern Daughter: The Life of Margaret Mitchell, 1991.

Tuesday, September 6, 2:00 PM, “Dixie Becomes America or Vice-Versa”
Bartley, Numan V. The New South, 1945-80: The Story of the South's Modernization, 1995
Daniel, Pete. Standing at the Crossroads: Southern Life in the Twentieth Century, 1996.

Interest Groups

BookClub1Book Club
The Book Club will not meet June-September; instead, members will participate in the Historical Society’s Forums on first Tuesdays of the month (see Summer History Discussion Forum).

BuddhaMindfulness Meditation
Guided meditation and a look at early Buddhist teachings on living a more peaceful life. Wednesdays, 6:00 - 7:30pm, led by Linda Kabo. The group will not meet June, July, and August; will resume on September 7.

platoPlato's Circle
Plato’s Circle will discuss whether there is a better way to provide health care in America. Questions that will be considered include the following:

  • Is health care a human right... a moral imperative?
  • Does a wealthy country have an ethical obligation to provide access to health care for everybody?
  • How is it that all the other industrialized democracies provide health care for everyone at a reasonable cost, something the United States has never managed to do?

Judith Evenson will provide an introduction to the discussion using material from the book “The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care by T.R. Reid”. She will share the various models of health care in other countries and facilitate a discussion regarding the need for a health care system that permits the strong facets of American medicine to flourish and makes their benefits accessible to everybody in a cost-efficient way. We will consider whether ObamaCare is the answer or just a first step.

Plato’s Circle will meet at Asta Linder House on Wednesday, June 1, at 1pm.

socratesSocrates Cafe
Socrates Cafe are gatherings around the world where people from different backgrounds get together and exchange thoughtful ideas and experiences while embracing the central theme of Socratizing, the idea that we learn more when we question and question with others. All UUCOV members, friends, and neighbors who enjoy lively discussions are invited to participate. Socrates Cafe meets every third Wednesday of the month in Waters Hall at 1:00pm..

ThreeOClockThree O'Clock Poets
Attn: Poets. Three O'clock Poets meets on the third Thursday of the month in Waters Hall, 3:00 - 4:30pm. David Lackey is taking over for Dawn Spitz during the dog days of summer. All poets and poetry lovers are welcome.

Social Justice

Overturning Citizens United

Can you find the 14 redshirts who traveled from UUCOV to the County Commission meeting to support the effort to overturn Citizens United?


Susette Bryer, Leie Carmody, Coralie Embree, John Halvorson, Sylvia Hancock, Brad Hardin, Dee Hardin, Olga Hebert, Bruce King, Kindra Muntz, Ellen Ostroth, Pat Wellington, Dave Williams, Martha Williams.

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Comments, kudos, questions, concerns, musings - all welcome. 325 word maximum. Send yours to .

Dear Editor –
Kenzie and Maggie, two of our youth at UUCOV, have missed Sundays at church because of harp performances at other churches in the area. While at these churches, which are all Christian, they hear some rather harsh viewpoints such as those who do not follow Jesus are wretched or are lost and empty and will fail in life. They have friends at school who talk ‘church’ and often mimic these viewpoints or even state things like “Nature is evil.” Kenzie and Maggie get anxious and confused when they hear things like this (as do Kenzie’s sisters). They have little to act as buffers besides each other, myself, Maggie’s mom and the YRE program at UUCOV. They are religious outsiders in their own community.

As adults we have the need to gather with like-minded people to share our faith. Children also need this. THIS is one of the main reasons why the YRE program at UUCOV is so important and why somehow, some way, we need to figure out how to grow this program. Three out of five children in the program are mine. While they fight often, they also cling to each other because it is hard for them to find others that speak their “language” when it comes to the profound belief that Mother Nature and ALL her children, be they rock, water, air, plant, bird, beast, human, are connected and worthy of respect and love. THIS is what they learn at UUCOV. Compare that to what they hear at other churches or from their friends. So, while I realize adult programming is very important, PLEASE consider our youth when thinking about space issues, how we allocate our funds, what types of events we have where the public is invited. Just as with adults, opening our doors to children can’t just happen on Sunday mornings. Let us help our youth find others who share their faith and values. The outcome is not just more friends for them, but more children being raised in a faith full of hope and love and respect.

Karen Griffin

Publication Deadlines

Connection: Articles and announcements for the Connection are due on the 20th of each month for the next month's edition. Please email your submissions to .

UUCOV Happenings: Events submissions are due at Thursday 9:00am for inclusion in UUCOV Happenings. Please email your submissions to .

UUCOV Mission and Covenant

Our mission is to build a welcoming and diverse community which encourages growth of the human spirit, the free and responsible search for truth and meaning, and active participation in social and community issues.

In a climate of joy, goodwill and trust this congregation covenants

  • to treat one another with kindness and respect,
  • to listen with openness and acceptance,
  • to support and protect the environment of which we are all a part,
  • to solve problems responsibly as we grow and change,
  • to encourage learning and nurture the growth of diverse human spirits, and
  • to dedicate time, talent and re- sources in an effort to make a difference in local and world communities.

In the spirit of our free religious heritage, we promise these to one another.

UU Principles

We, the member congregations of the Unitarian Universalist Association, covenant to affirm and promote:

  • The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
  • Justice, equity and compassion in human relations;
  • Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
  • A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
  • The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
  • The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
  • Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.

UU Sources

The Living Tradition we share draws from many sources:

  • Direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder, affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of spirit and an openness to the forces that create and uphold life;
  • Words and deeds of prophetic women and men which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love;
  • Wisdom from the world's religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life;
  • Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God's love by loving our neighbors as ourselves;
  • Humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit.
  • Spiritual teachings of Earth-centered traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature.

Grateful for the religious pluralism which enriches and ennobles our faith, we are inspired to deepen our understanding and expand our vision. As free congregations we enter into this covenant, promising to one another our mutual trust and support.

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