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November 2017
Journey newsletter
Our Mission: 
Buckman Bridge Unitarian Universalist Church exists to create and nourish a loving community that seeks justice and respect for all.
Worship Services
President's Place
Treasurer's Corner
Activities & Events
Member News

Worship Services

Services are held Sundays at 10:30 am 

8447 Manresa Avenue, Jacksonville, FL 32244
Church Phone: (904) 276-3739 •
Check the BBUUC Calendar for information on other programming.

November 5 Service: 

Water Communion

Dani Slader and
 Sarah Johnson

Accompanist: Eileen Morrison

About our Service:

As is traditional in many UU churches across the country, BBUUC will hold our annual Water Sharing ritual. All are invited to bring a small container of water from (or representing) your travels, special places, moments or events from the summer or the year, and place the waters into the communal bowl.  The rejoining of many waters symbolizes the rejoining of the congregation after summer.

This service will include a Pennies from Heaven collection and a Hymnal Dedication.

Pennies from Heaven is November 5
Please bring your extra change for a special collection to benefit our local Meals on Wheels program.

Each quarter we alternate donations between Mandarin and Clay County Meals on Wheels.  Please save all your coins for the first Sunday of every month, and remember bills are welcome too ☺

We have raised almost $400 the past three months for Meals on Wheels. Learn more about the program in the BBUUC News Section.

November 12: 

Dr. Sudhir Prabhu

“Assimilating the Value of Values –  The Prerequisite of a Steady Mind”

Worship Leader: Vanessa Birchell
Accompanist: Marilyn Smart

About our Service:

Since childhood we are told to follow certain moral and ethical values, such as non-injury, truthfulness, non-stealing, humility, charity etc. They represent certain Universal pragmatic attitudes that religious scriptures confirm. Are they really that important? What’s the harm in bending them from time to time to suit our needs when they appear to be hurdles to achieving our “practical” goals and desires?  The presentation will explore these questions and explore if assimilating the true import of these values is a prerequisite for a steady, objective and conflict-free mind.

About our Speaker: 

Dr. Sudhir Prabhu, is a Board-certified Allergist who moved to Jacksonville in 1981. Over the years, he has been actively involved in professional, social and charitable causes, both in the US and in India. He served as the President of Florida Allergy Society and is a founding member of the Hindu Temple of NE Florida and the Community Asthma Partnership in Jacksonville. He has served on several non-profit boards including American Red Cross, American Lung Association, and Healthy Jacksonville 2010. In India, he initiated and is intimately involved with NGOs working in livelihood skills training and functional literacy sectors in rural and remote areas. He has been recognized for his contributions both in the US and in India. He recently retired from his formal professional commitments and is enjoying his newfound freedom.

November 19: 

Rev. Laurie Denman

“Gratitude versus Thankfulness”

Accompanist: Gary Smart

About our Service:

How these two different stages of awareness impact our relationship with the Divine.

About our Speaker:

Rt. Rev. Laurie Denman is the 3rd Degree Arch Priestess and Temple Keeper for the Chosen Path Church, a full Temple of the Correllian Nativist Church. She is an attuned Reiki Master and instructor as well as a Correllian Shaman and Shaman Guide. She is a charter member of the Northeast Florida Pagan Leadership Coalition. She recently retired as a Project Manager for a major world bank. She has two grown children who are still the center of her Universe. She still volunteers in several employee networks at the bank including the LGBT Allies, CFO Diversity and Inclusion Council and LEAD. She volunteers for Pug Rescue of Florida fostering dogs and serves on the Board of Directors as Treasurer. She is the CFO and Membership Volunteer for Correllian Education Ministries, the seminary of the Correllian Nativist Church, commonly known as She is an active participant as a Faith Leader in the Jacksonville Coalition for Equality’s efforts to update the Duval County Human Rights Ordinance to include protections for our LGBTQ citizens. Her hobbies are water gardening, playing World of Warcraft and spending time with her pugs, her cat, and her pet tortoise.

November 26: 

Linda Crawford

“Our Fifth Principle: The Right of Conscience and The Use of the Democratic Process within our Congregations and in Society at Large”

Worship Leader: Jay Gardner
Accompanist: Gary Smart

About our Service:
We may understand why conscience is important to our religion, but what does Unitarian Universalism have to do with democracy? Linda will discuss why democracy and Unitarian Universalism have been allied since long before our parent faiths merged in in 1961. She will also talk about how crucial the right of conscience is at this particular moment in American history.

About our Speaker:
After nine years as a Unitarian Universalist, Linda has come to the shocking conclusion that she is in fact a religious person. That revelation came as a direct result of preparing this sermon. Linda is very grateful to this church and congregation for many reasons: not least of them is being given the privilege of speaking from the pulpit.

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Finding a New Spring

In this month’s President’s Pen, we focus on the third source of Unitarian Universalism: Wisdom from the world's religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life. I would like to share a wonderful Buddhist tale about perseverance titled “Finding a New Spring”.
   Once upon a time a certain tradesman was leading a caravan to another country to sell his goods. Along the way they came to the edge of a severe hot-sand desert. They asked about, and found that during the day time the sun heats up the fine sand until it's as hot as charcoal, so no one can walk on it - not even bullocks or camels! So, the caravan leader hired a desert guide, one who could follow the stars, so they could travel only at night when the sand cools down. They began the dangerous night time journey across the desert.

   A couple of nights later, after eating their evening meal, and waiting for the sand to cool, they started out again. The desert guide, who was driving the first cart, saw from the stars that they were getting close to the other side of the desert. He had also overeaten, so that when he relaxed, he dozed off to sleep. Then the bullocks who, of course, couldn't tell directions by reading the stars, gradually turned to the side and went in a big wide circle until they ended up at the same place they had started from!
   By then it was morning, and the people realized they were back at the same spot they'd camped at the day before. They lost heart and began to cry about their condition. Since the desert crossing was supposed to be over by now, they had no more water and were afraid they would die of thirst. They even began to blame the caravan leader and the desert guide - "We can do nothing without water!", they complained.

   Then the tradesman thought to himself, "If I lose courage now, in the middle of this disastrous situation, my leadership has no meaning. If I fall to weeping and regretting this misfortune, and do nothing, all these goods and bullocks and even the lives of the people, including myself, may be lost. I must be energetic and face the situation!" So, he began walking back and forth, trying to think out a plan to save them all.

   Remaining alert, out of the corner of his eye, he noticed a small clump of
grass. He thought, "Without water, no plant could live in this desert." So, he called over the most energetic of his fellow travelers and asked them to dig up the ground on that very spot. They dug and dug, and after a while they got down to a large stone. Seeing it they stopped, and began to blame the leader again, saying "This effort is useless. We're just wasting our time!" But the tradesman replied, "No, no, my friends, if we give up the effort we will all be ruined and our poor animals will die - let us be encouraged!"

   As he said this, he got down into the hole, put his ear to the stone, and heard flowing water. Immediately, he called over a boy who had been digging and said, "If you give up, we will all perish - so take this heavy hammer and strike the rock."

   The boy lifted the hammer over his head and hit the rock as hard as he could - and he himself was the most surprised when the rock spilt in two and a mighty flow of water gushed out from under it! Suddenly, all the people were overjoyed. They drank and bathed and washed the animals and cooked their food and ate.

   Before they left, they raised a high banner so that other travelers could see it from afar and come to the new spring in the middle of the hot-sand desert. Then they continued safely to the end of their journey.

This is a wonderful tale of maintaining perseverance, leadership, and keeping the faith in difficult times. I cannot help but draw parallels between this story and the status of our UU faith. Our church. We are in a world where it may seem difficult to persevere, but we must. In this time of transition, it is imperative that we focus on creating a church that fulfills our spirit. We must come together as a congregation and “raise the banner” and steer others toward the “waters” of those who are just beginning their spiritual journey. Ask yourself, “What can I do to facilitate the creation of a rich oasis in the middle of a spiritual desert?”

In faith,
Vanessa Birchell
BBUUC President
Hello BBUUC,     

November is already upon us!  This year is moving fast and we have had many successful activities, including Conner's A-Maze-ing Acres and Trunk or Treat. This month, we have more planned! On the first Sunday of this month, November 5th, we are having a free Fall Picnic just down the road from BBUUC at Tillie K. Fowler regional park. We plan to meet just following the service for extended fellowship and fun. You can bring your own lunch, or bring something to share.

Next, on Saturday, November 18th, we will be assembling blessing bags for the homeless. We will be accepting donations throughout November for this event. Check out the list of suggested items in this edition of the Journey. Children are also invited to stay overnight. We will be watching a movie and engaging in fun activities. Breakfast will be provided and pick-up will be at 9:00am. What an exciting month ahead!

With Hope,
Erin Rogers
Interim DRE

Financial Highlights for First Quarter FY 2017-18

Our current assets from cash and investments have increased compared to the same time a year ago: our outstanding loan balance has decreased; our reserve for Capital Repair and Replacement has grown and our new Congregational Growth and Development Fund increases each month. Our Endowment Fund has nearly doubled thanks to the recent generous bequest of $10,000 from Meg O’Brien. Other fund balances remain essentially unchanged. Our overall financial position remains strong. Our first quarter revenue was noticeably lower than last year but was mostly offset by decreased operational expenses. For complete financial statements, please contact Finance.

We appreciate everyone who pledges and contributes financially, as well as our many volunteers who help keep our expenses down.

Pam Richards, Finance Chair

Activities & Events

Trunk or Treat
Saturday, October 28th from 
5pm to 9pm

Join CUUPS and LRE for BBUUC's annual Trunk or Treat!

Costume and pumpkin carving contests, creepy crawly dishes, and of course our Best Trunk Competition promise to make the evening absolutely Spooktacular!

Chili Cook-Off Saturday, November 4, at 6:30 at the Church

Tickets will be on sale after Church during October.
Cost: $10 for Adults and $5 for Children

Wine, beer and soda will be available for donations.
Join the fun and enjoy sampling a number of great chili recipes at the same time. After supper, you will have an opportunity to vote for your favorite chili.  The winner will take the traveling trophy home for a year. Following the Cook-Off, we will organize an Ice Cream Social /Bingo Game activity. I bet you have not played Bingo for many years. This is your chance to join a church Fun-Draising activity and win prizes at the same time.

We cannot have a Cook-Off without Chili Cooks. If you have a favorite recipe, please plan to bring a pot to the Cook-Off and enter the competition for the trophy. Please email Cindy Gaunder at or Jim Niss at to confirm your entry.  Tell us a bit about the expected taste and degree of heat.  We look forward to enjoying your efforts.

Free Fall Picnic

Join us for extended fellowship and fun after church on Sunday, November 5th!  We will be having a fall picnic at Tillie K. Fowler regional park (just over three miles north of BBUUC at 7000 Roosevelt Blvd).  All are welcome!  Bring your own lunch, or bring an item to share!



On The Path To Leadership
Caring For Ourselves and Our Church
Sunday, November 12, 2017 from 12:00 - 2:00 pm in Pete Seeger Room @ BBUUC

This workshop has been designed to help new and established members enrich their experiences at BBUUC.  As we each complete the Path to Membership through the Newcomer Classes, this workshop is the next step to help us all navigate the Path to Leadership. 

If you have never been a leader - this workshop is for you. 
If you would like to be a committee member - this workshop is for you.
If you are a committee member but are interested in being a chair - this is for you. 
If you have been a leader but are experiencing burnout - this workshop is for you.
If you would like to serve on the BBUUC Board - this workshop is for you.
If you want to enhance the time you spend at BBUUC - this is for you.

The topics include:
  • juggling specific responsibilities
  • avoiding burnout
  • analyzing congregational challenges
  • what we give up to reap the benefits of belonging to a community
Since this workshop has been designed for new and established members, any member is welcome to attend.

Childcare is available, let us know ASAP if needed.
Please respond to us if you are interested in being part of this workshop at:
Joann, Peg, Grace                  
Your BBUUC Leadership Development Committee

Christmas Choir Rehearsals

We will have our first Christmas Choir rehearsal on November 12 at 12pm in the Sanctuary.  We will review older songs, and look at new ones. In addition we will organize the choir music for the Christmas Eve service. Even if you can't be with us on Christmas Eve, please come.You don't need to be a "soloist". We need all your voices. Depending on your interest and enthusiasm, we may sing more often in the worship service! 

If you have questions, email Marilyn at See you there!
Afternoon Tea

Members and friends of BBUUC are invited to our monthly Afternoon Tea.  Please join us for a delightful interlude of chatting, munching, and sipping!
What:           Wednesday Afternoon Tea at Pam and Frank's home.
When:          Wednesday, November 15, 2017, from  2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Where:          Pam Richards
and Frank Schwartz Home

Dress:          Casual (or feel free to dress up if you’d like!)
Goodies:        If you would like to bring something, great! If, not, great also! Some of us love to bake, some of us don't have the time or desire. But we all like getting together. If you’d like to bring something not homemade, we welcome it. 
RSVP to if you plan to attend.

December Tea will be on Saturday, December 16 at Knapik's Home.  Plan to come!

Blessing Bags - Overnight

We will be assembling blessing bags for the homeless on Saturday, November 18th. The event starts at 6:00 PM. All are invited to help build the bags. Children are invited for an overnight event! We will be watching movies and having fun fall activities. Pick-up will be at 9:00 am. Breakfast will be provided.

Donations needed for blessing bags:

Gallon Size Freezer ZipLock Bags
Multi-Purpose Wipes**
Chapstick with sunscreen
Facial Wipes*
Nail Clipper
Feminine Hygiene Pads
Hand Sanitizer
Wash Cloth
First Aid Kit Band Aids
Water Bottle*
Quarters for Laundry
Laundry Pods
Individual Packet Aspirin or Tylenol
Safety Pins
Help to Connect:
Clothing: ((All new please))
Food: (homeless seem to be less concerned about food than the other items on this list.)
Instant Coffee
Tea Bags
Beef Jerky
Dried Fruit
Trail Mix
Granola Bars
Protein Powder Packets
Instant Oatmeal Packs
Tuna/Cracker Packs
Hot Cocoa / Spiced Cider Mixes
Fruit / Applesauce (with spoon) Juice Box

Holiday Giving Tree and Christmas Party

To Benefit Holiday Helpers
When: 6 – 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2
Where: BBUUC

The Welcoming Congregation Ministry, in partnership with the Social Action Committee, will host an old-fashioned Christmas party from 6 to 9 p.m. on Saturday, December 2 at BBUUC. The event will benefit Holiday Helpers, a Jacksonville nonprofit that brings holiday cheer to children whose families are affected by HIV.
Come join us for games, food, gift wrapping and a community tree trimming. Bring your own Christmas ornament so we can personalize our BBUUC family Christmas tree!

All are welcome. The suggested donation for attendance is $5 per person 16 years and older. Donations will also be accepted for gift wrapping.

If you miss the party (and please don’t!) we encourage you to support Holiday Helpers with a donation. We will be collecting donations in early December following Sunday services. Thanks for helping!

Holiday Helpers benefits children who have been infected with HIV or who have a family member affected by the disease. The children represent a population who are historically under served by better known toy donation organizations. Holiday Helpers provides children with toys, gift cards and food during the holidays. Proceeds from the BBUUC fundraiser will go directly towards the group’s Christmas Children’s Party. For more information, contact David Austin, or visit

Proposed Art and Handicraft Sale:
Saturday and Sunday, December 9 and 10

The church is in the planning stage for an art and handicraft sale December 9 and 10.  Members and friends may show their wares and contribute a portion of the sales to the Church. The church hopes to open the event to the community on Saturday. 

If you have an interest in participating as a seller, please contact Jim Niss. Please indicate the type of product that you will be offering and some idea of the amount of space you will need.

Member News

Meet Our New Members:
Meg and Ben Atkinson

Meg works as an environmental engineer and program manager for CSX, a freight rail transportation company headquartered in Jacksonville. She is deeply committed personally and professionally to sustainability, and has an aligned interest in social justice.
Meg has also studied marine science – and even traveled to the Gulf of Mexico in a submarine called the ALVIN! She enjoys cooking up creative dishes, often with exotic spices, and working to improve the family  home and gardens. 
Ben is a natural science professor at Flagler College in St. Augustine. He is a wildlife ecologist, and has traveled to several countries to study animals. For nearly half his life, he’s worked with various mentors and non-profit organizations to conserve turtles. He’s also an active member of the Ancient City Poets, which holds monthly open mic readings at the Corazon Cinema and Café. Other interests include archery, listening to music, and outdoor recreation – especially kayaking. 
Zoe is three years old. She loves attending her Montessori school, playing in the sandbox – and outside in general. She loves video chatting with her grandparents and using her imagination. She likes to sing, dance, and make new friends. She’s also a big fan of animals, and PBS kids shows. She likes to help her mom cook, and loves going to the Jacksonville Zoo as often as possible with her parents. 
The Atkinson family shares their home with a rescue mutt named Marley, who is now 12 years old. He first “moved in” when just a puppy. He enjoys going for walks, chasing squirrels, barking at delivery folks, and giving endless affection.

Welcome to the Atkinson Family!
Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday!
Jyoti Chawla    11/1
Corinne Warren    11/1
Robert Brewer    11/5
Jim Niss    11/7
Diane Freeman    11/7
Linda Mowers    11/7
Anunnaki Ray    11/10
Brenda Patterson    11/11
Erik Slader  11/12
Grace Lindewirth  11/15
Debbie Atkins  11/16
Linda Crawford  11/16
Karen Roberts   11/19
Frank Schwartz  11/19
Chloe LoTempio  11/19
Annabelle Gallois-Bernos  11/23
David Austin  11/28
Happy Birthday

Wedding Anniversaries
Chris and Jim Jarman 11/12
Membership Anniversaries

BBUUC Membership Anniversaries
David and Peg Christenson 11/16/08
Rich Toupin 11/16/08
Howard Miller 11/17/91
Betty Forbes 11/20/05
Lynn Wadley 11/22/09
Help us keep our records up-to-date! If you see birthday, anniversary, or membership anniversary that needs to be corrected or added to our list, please send it to
Please remember the Glassman family’s 6 year old nephew Henry Glassman in your prayers. He is fighting an aggressive cancer.
Congratulations to Lynn Wadley on the birth of her third GREAT-grandaughter Hazel!


ICARE Justice Ministry
BBUUC is one of 38 religious congregations (Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Bhai, and Unitarian Universalist) that participate with Jacksonville’s Interfaith Coalition for Action, Reconciliation and Empowerment, AKA ICARE. Representing over 30,000 church members, ICARE works with very specific justice issues identified by persons who attend House Meetings which are held each fall in all of the ICARE congregations. BBUUC’s ICARE Team Leaders are: Carole Hawkins, Viqui Hilliard, Corinne Warren, Karen Christiansen, and Ken Christiansen.
With the current very forceful and positive emphasis on racial justice in the Unitarian Universalist Association, the outreach of ICARE is central to the mission of BBUUC. More than half of the ICARE congregations are in the Northwest quadrant of Jacksonville. All of the work researching issues and ways to solve problems is done on an integrated, long term basis.
Issues currently addressed citywide by ICARE include Restorative Justice for Youthful Offenders instead of arrests and loss of civil opportunities; Wealth Building in Northwest Jacksonville through worker-owned cooperatives; reducing Homelessness in Jacksonville by supporting a Day Resource Center; and increasing opportunities for felons who have served their sentences by strengthening the Jacksonville Re-Entry Center.

Social Action Committee News

BBUUC ICARE Team Leaders held five House Meetings this fall with close to 30 BBUUC members participating. One of the purposes of the House Meetings is to build relationships with other BBUUC members. Many personal experiences and concerns were shared and justice issues were identified. Approximately 20 attendees chose to be ICARE Network Members.
The most pressing issues raised in our house meetings and similar meetings held in all 38 ICARE congregations were brought to the Team Leader meeting on October 17. Each House Meeting had one vote. The top three issues that surfaced were: Criminal Justice including policing, sentencing, bail policies, etc.; Health care and Mental Health; and Youth and Education. 
All Network Members will be able to vote to choose one of these three issues to be taken up this year. That issue will be chosen at the Community Problems Assembly on November 14, 7 pm, at Christ the King Catholic Church, 720 Arlington Rd N, 32211. Everyone is welcome. We are planning to car pool. To be included email or call 781-8129.
Ken Christiansen
Social Action Co-Chair

Standing on the Side of Love shirts

Want an adult size Standing on the Side of Love tee shirt? Then order one from the UUA bookstore!
The church will not order merchandise on the expectation of selling it. The Finance P&P were changed last year to prevent financial losses from merchandise speculation. If anyone needs child size shirts, there is still a box full of them in the office. 

Meals on Wheels Update - Donation Collected Nov. 5

August collection          $168.47
September collection    $142.04
October collection         $  89.28
                                      $399.79 donated to Mandarin Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels is a vital program which meets the needs of the homebound in Mandarin.  Dedicated volunteers deliver hot meals each weekday to individuals who have a variety of disabilities ranging from chronic illness to convalescence from an operation, and are unable to cook or have no one to cook for them.   Mandarin Meals on Wheels does not receive any city, state, or federal funding.   It is financially dependent upon contributions from various organizations and individuals. 

Are You Shopping on Amazon?

Amazon Affiliates Fundraiser

This a great way to support BBUUC with no cost or effort!

Revenue we have received from Amazon purchases made through our BBUUC link:

  • $118 in July (for purchases made in May)
  • $118 in August (for purchases made in June)
  • $144 in September (for purchases made in July)

Remember to use the BBUUC link to Amazon every time you make a purchase, and ask your family and friends to do the same – you don’t need to be a Member of our church to contribute.

Just use this link (also found at the bottom of our webpage

No special login or code is needed.  How easy is that!

For more information about monthly activities, click the pictures below:

BBUUC Full Calendar:
Childcare is available for many church activities but must be requested in advance when you sign up for an activity. Please contact the activity sponsor listed in the announcement for more information.
Church Directory
Church Directory
If you would like online and quick/easy access to the BBUUC directory on your computer, tablet, or smart phone (always up to date and with photos), contact or see Pam Richards or Peg Christenson for login instructions.
If you would like the PDF directory and separate Picture directory emailed to you so you can access the file on your computer, tablet, or smart phone without an internet connection (or so you can print a hard copy), contact or see Stacy Asimos in the church office.

If you don’t use a computer and need a hard copy, see Stacy Asimos in the church office.
Introduce Yourself!
 If you are a recent member and we have not run an introduction article about you for the Journey yet, please feel free to contact  We're interested in how you found BBUUC, what you like here, and what you would like other members of the BBUUC community to know about you.
We can help you write the article or you can write a 400 word or less article about yourself. We would also like a photo so that people know who you are and can introduce themselves to you during Fellowship Time after the service.
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The Journey is the official newsletter of the Buckman Bridge Unitarian Universalist Church. It is distributed monthly by electronic means to members and friends of the BBUUC community. If you would like to subscribe, please send an email to
Physical printouts of the Journey are also available at the Membership Table in the Sanctuary. (If a pledging member of the community does not have home Internet or computer access, a mailed printout can be requested from or by contacting the church administrator at 904-276-3739.)
If you have comments or suggestions about the format or content of the Journey, please contact the editorial team at
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Orange Park, FL 32067
8447 Manresa Ave
Jacksonville, FL 32244
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