Dear Ones,

Here we are on the cusp of summer vacation time, though our Earth seems still in the process of deciding what season she is bringing! This Memorial Day weekend I was in Brewster on Cape Cod with my sister preparing our property for the upcoming rental season. The cold snapped, with temps in the 50’s! I hope things brighten for you, weather-wise and spirit-wise, this summer, and that you find some time to rest and refresh before the busy fall is once again upon us. Here’s a little preview of some features of the congregational year to come.

First of all, the Summer Service Series this year, “Connecting Across Difference,” promises to be superinteresting: UUFSBers will be talking about communication between guide dogs and their human companions, with autistic children using music as a bridge, from outside the gender binary norm, across the partisan divide, between parents and their own special needs children, across the barrier between life and death, across differences in human ability, and across cultural and religious divides within our own faith. Come support your friends when you can!

Secondly, after our annual “Flowers and Passages” service on June 17 (don’t miss it), Linda and I head out to this year’s UU General Assembly in St. Louis, Missouri. (You would love it—think about coming with us one year. It’s always the 3rd week in June.) GA is preceded by the annual professional meeting of UU ministers. We fly back to you on June 25. I’ll be participating in the 2nd service in the summer series on July 1, with Summerland Church of Light’s leader, Frank Kotowski, and then beginning some summer time away, using a combination of the vacation and study leave time you generously afford me. I show up again in mid-August recharged and prepared for another year of ministry with you! Let me know if there is a topic you’d like to hear addressed from the pulpit between then and June 2019.

Thirdly, please don’t miss our annual Homecoming Sunday and picnic barbecue on September 9. On our rotation through the elements, we’ve come back around to Fire, so our service will include a Fire Communion. And, of course, we’ll take a picture of the whole congregation of us looking like a big ol’ bonfire on the lawn!

Fourthly, a heads up that the next two years of our partnership will be a little different, as I will be taking my first ever sabbatical leave, in two three-month increments: Jan-March 2019 and March-May 2020. I haven’t decided yet on the nature of my sabbatical pursuits, but I am really looking forward taking some of the time I’ve earned (at one month per year of service) and spinning up some gold for us. Each month a Long Island UU minister will be on call for pastoral emergencies beyond the capacity of our Pastoral Assistants, and that minister will preach the first Sunday of the month. Other Sunday services will be led by guest preachers I am lining up and monthly lay leaders the WAs will, as usual, identify. Don’t worry, you will be fine! 

Definitely yours, ❤