Our Church Circular / Nuestro Periódico de la Iglesia / Februay 3, 2010 / 3 de Febrero 2010

Inside This Issue:

0106-0 Send us Your Photos - The Organ Works!
0106-1 Sunday Services
0106-2 Save the Dates
0106-3 Lifespan Faith Development, Help Bring The Spirit Alive With Our Children, Events
As We Build the Beloved Community... Becoming a People So Bold!
The Not-So-Secret Circle Supper Society
0106-6 Volunteer Recognition: Dianne Saichek—Beyond the Call of Duty
0106-7 Are You Interested in Fundraising?
0106-8 Ready to Become a New Member of the First Unitarian Church of San José?
New Member Ingathering, Valentine’s Day Sunday, February 14
Church Yearbook 2010: Sign Up For Your FREE Portrait Sitting
0106-10 Circling Around - Who is giving you a New Year’s Rant? What European country that you’d never guess is having a drought? Which 12 people have hopes for the New Year? Who is just beginning an unbelievable art career?
0106-11 Your Church Board of Directors Meeting, December 16, 2009
0106-12 Program and Operations Council (POC) Report:
Generous Giving and a Church Fundraising Feat
0106-13 Upcoming Events
  • Tuesday, February 9 - Peninsula Interweave Gathering at FUCSJ
  • Sunday, February 14 - Reading the Five Gospels along with Bob
  • Thursday, March 4 - Women’s Alliance
  • March 5-7, 2010 - Women and Religion UUA Retreat
  • June 27-30, 2010 - Junior High Backpack Trip 2009
  • July 14-18 - Church Campout 2010
UU Hikers & Friends
0106-14 Classifieds: Safe, reliable car for sale
0106-15 Spotlight on Social Justice
0106-16 The Ministers Are In! / Board and Staff Contact Information
En Español
0106-1 Servicios de Domingo

Mientras Construimos Nuestra Querida Comunidad…¡Llegar a ser un Pueblo tan Osado!

0106-8 ¿Listo para ser un Nuevo Miembro de la Primera Iglesia Unitaria de San José?
0106-15 Aquí estan los Ministros!

Send us your photos!
The Circular is always on the lookout for your photos of church-related events. If you have taken photos during any recent services or church-related events, please e-mail them to uusanjose@gmail.com. We maintain an archive of church member and event photos, so please send us what you’ve got, especially if you have a favorite photo of yourself that you would like us to use next time you appear in Circling Around or another newsletter feature.

Yes, the Organ Still Works

Libby Codd played the organ while John Harris turned the pages at the January 24, 2010 service. Photo courtesy of Henry Ruddle

January Theme: The Hopeful Heresies of Our Heritage:
Unitarian Universalist History and Theology
9:30 a.m.
Servicios en español/Translation into English

Domingo celebración

February 7 – 9:30 am

Crecimiento de nuestras almas: Autenticidad y el camino hacia la igualdad
Con demasiada frecuencia la sociedad le pide a cada uno de nosotros— y especialmente a aquellos cuyas identidades han sido marginadas: a “cubrir” algún aspecto esencial de nuestro yo. ¿Qué partes de nosotros mismos hemos tenido que esconder para encajar en o salir adelante? En este servicio festivo, comenzaremos a desmantelar las divisiones que matan partes de nuestras almas y que destruyen nuestras comunidades y celebramos el amor y la conciencia que nos puede traer a la plenitud.

Dirige: la Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones
Asociados de Culto: Miembros de SSM

11:00 a.m.
Services in English

Celebration Sunday

February 7 – 11:00 am

Growing our souls: Authenticity and the path to equality
All too often society asks each of us—and especially those whose identities have been marginalized—to “cover” some essential aspect of our self. What parts of ourselves have we had to hide in order to fit in or get ahead? In this celebratory service, we’ll begin to dismantle the divisions that kill off parts of our souls and that destroy our communities, and we’ll celebrate the love and consciousness that can bring us into wholeness.

Worship Leader: the Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones
Worship Associate: Julia Rodriguez

Domingo de las fuentes

14 de Febrero – 9:30 am

Día del amor y la amistad
¿Realmente celebramos el día del amor? Acompáñenme y compartamos con amor esta reflexión acerca de este día.

Dirige: Roberto Padilla
Asociados de Culto: Miembros de SSM

Day of love and friendship
What really celebrates the day of love? Come let us share with love this reflection about this day.

Worship Leader: Roberto Padilla
Worship Associates: SSM Members

Sources Sunday

February 14 – 11:00 am

National Standing on the Side of Love Day…
On this day, Unitarian Universalist congregations across the nation will participate in a day of worship and practice works of love. National Standing on the Side of Love Day http://www.standingonthesideoflove.org/reimagining-valentines-day/ empowers each congregation to take action on issues that matter locally, and to pursue strategies that are effective and meaningful to them. Join us and celebrate a Valentine’s Day re-imagined. Love is about more than romance, greeting cards and chocolates. We want to celebrate love’s power to transform communities!

Worship Leader: the Rev. Geoff Rimositis
Worship Associate: Jeff Norment

Día Nacional de Estar en el Lado del Amor…
En este día, las congregaciones Unitarias Universalistas en todo el país participarán en un día de servicios religiosos y la práctica del trabajo del amor. El Día Nacional de Estar en el Lado del Amor http://www.standingonthesideoflove.org/reimagining-valentines-day/ permite a cada Congregación a que tome acción sobre los asuntos que son importantes localmente y para buscar estrategias que son eficaces y significativas para ellos. Únase a nosotros y celebremos un día de San Valentín re-imaginado. El amor es más que el romance, tarjetas de felicitación y chocolates. ¡Queremos celebrar el poder del amor de transformar las comunidades!

Dirige: Rev. Geoff Rimositis
Asociado de Culto: Jeff Norment

Domingo de la teología

21 de Febrero – 9:30 am

Cuestionando el Privilegio
Mientras llegamos a ser un “pueblo muy osado”, trabajando para desmantelar las divisiones, para derribar sistemas de opresión y construir comunidades amadas, encontramos radicalmente diferentes perspectivas, incluyendo diferentes respuestas a los propios términos “opresión” y “privilegio”. ¿Cómo enriquecer diariamente nuestras vidas y agrandar nuestro trabajo para mantener más de una perspectiva a la vez? ¡Un servicio animado que nos lleva hacia las soluciones espirituales para los “ismos” que nos dividen!

Dirige: la Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones
Asociados de Culto: Miembros de SSM

Theology Sunday

February 21 – 11:00 am

Questioning Privilege
As we become a “people so bold,” working to dismantle divisions, to tear down systems of oppression, and to build up beloved communities, we encounter radically different perspectives, including different responses to the very terms “oppression” and “privilege.” How does it enrich our daily lives and our larger work to hold more than one perspective at once? A lively service leads us toward the spiritual solutions for the “isms” that divide us!

Worship Leader: the Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones
Worship Associate: Luther Jackson


Save the Dates

  • February 5, Friday, 8 pm, Dances of Universal Peace, Sanctuary
  • February 7, Sunday, 12:30 pm, UU Band of Writers, Youth Room; Spectrum of Sexual Orientation Class, Ramsden Fireside Room, 2 pm; info at grimositis@sanjoseuu.org
  • February 11, Thursday, Common Security Club meeting, 7-8:30 pm, Conference Room
  • February 14, Sunday, New Member Ingathering at 11:00 am service, Sanctuary; Reading the Five Gospels along with Bob Miess, 6-8 pm, Ramsden Fireside Room; for info, contact Bob at Bob@FloweringEnterprises.com
  • March 5-7, UUA Women and Religion retreat, Enchanted Hills, near Napa
  • March 18, Thursday, 7-9 pm, Estate Planning Seminar, Ramsden Fireside Room
  • April 30-May 2, UUA District Assembly 2010, Newark, CA
  • June 27-30, FUCSJ Junior High Backpack Trip. Contact Pam Pell at johnpell@aol.com
  • July 14-18, Wednesday-Sunday, Church Campout 2010, McConnell State Recreation Area, Turlock, mm@feldmo.com

Lifespan Faith Development

Nursery -- Birth through 5 Years
Nursery, Lower Level

We provide a safe, clean environment in which to support each child in initiating play activities at the developmental level they manifest. Structured activities, games, stories and crafts are a part of the nursery experience. Child Care Workers: Maria Elena Olvera & Glynda Cotten

The Arts & Spiritual Practice – Kindergarten - Grade 5
(Lower Level, Classrooms 2-6) 

Each Sunday after the children are sung out of the service our children come together to make music with Nayo Ulloa http://www.nayoulloa.com, Sally Cooperrider and other volunteers for the first half hour. We sing, play with rhythm instruments, and have fun doing musical games. Music is the language of the soul and an important component of children’s spiritual growth and learning. Occasionally throughout the year the children will present a musical offering in the Sunday service.

Make A World of Difference: Asset Building Activities to Help Teens Explore Diversity — Grades 6-8 
(Lower Level, Conference & Meditation Rooms)  

In this class youth develop their skills as competent global citizens, able to understand many of the issues surrounding diversity and culture. The goal is to raise the level of awareness about several diversity issues, while also giving youth an opportunity to pause and reflect on their thoughts, feelings and experiences. The purpose of these activities is not to promote any particular idea, value, or point of view, but to give youth the opportunity to develop greater understanding about the variety of issues surrounding diversity. The will learn about the broad definition of diversity that includes gender, age, religion, race, physical abilities, appearance, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status.

Senior High Youth Group — Grades 9-12
(Youth Group Room)

The senior high youth group meets weekly from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. The group offers its members a safe place to share their lives and find support and friendship among open minded and loving peers. The group engages in discussions about issues relevant to youth’s lives and communities. They plan social and service projects throughout the year. And they participate in youth conferences in area Unitarian Universalist churches under the auspices of the Pacific Central District of Unitarian Universalist Congregations and Y.R.U.U. (Young Religious Unitarian Universalists). The youth group’s empowering philosophy educates youth to be leaders within the group, church community and denomination.

Youth Group Activities
Staff: the Rev. Geoff Rimositis

Junior High (6th-8th Grades)
Advisor: Pam Pell
The Junior High Youth Group meets the first Friday of the month for social and fun activities. 

Senior High (9th-12th grades)
Advisors: V Kingsley, Dani Hope, Mike Williamson, Cordelia Willis

To participate in junior or senior high youth group activities, contact the Rev. Geoff Rimositis, 292-3858, ext.25 or grimositis@sanjoseuu.org

Help Bring The Spirit Alive With Our Children

Join the Music, Arts, Games or Drama teams that are working with our children in Kindergarten through fifth grade this year in our Sunday morning art and spirituality program. If you are a musician and / or singer, join us for 30 minutes each Sunday to help make the Spirit of Music come alive with our children—and still make it upstairs for the sermon!

Or join our children for a month and bring your special art activity that will be part of the Sunday worship experience. Or come down once a month and have fun playing games with the children as we bring the spirit alive with our holy laughter and in the midst of the fun talk about what’s going on in our lives and how one lives a joyful and meaningful life. E-mail me at GRimositis@sanjoseuu.org and let’s talk about how you would like to help bring the spirit alive in your life and in our children’s lives.

Children & Youth Ministries

Adult Spiritual Growth & Enrichment Activities

To participate in junior or senior high youth group activities, contact the Rev. Geoff Rimositis, 292-3858, ext.25 or grimositis@sanjoseuu.org

FUCSJ Junior High Backpack Trip June 27-30, 2010

Lace up your boots, put on your backpack, and hike the High Sierra on this 4-day 3-night backpacking trip. We will cover about 13 miles over the course of 4 days as we backpack through the wilderness of Meiss Country near Carson Pass (Hwy 88). This trip is open to youth in our church entering grades 6-8 in the fall of 2010. For more information, contact Pam Pell: 408-287-4453 or johnpell@aol.com. An informational meeting will be held at church on Sunday, March 28th from 10:30-10:55 am.

UULM Young Adult Justice Weekend Feb. 12-14th

There is a unique opportunity coming in February for young adults ages 18-35 across the state to engage with each other and the urban ministries that have sprung up since in the last decade in Los Angeles. This promises to be a relevant and engaging chance to take Unitarian Universalism out of the sanctuary and into the heart of the city. The Justice Weekend is held at First Unitarian Universalist Church of Los Angeles February 12-14, 2010. It begins Friday evening at 6 pm and closing celebration is at 11 am on Sunday morning, followed by lunch at church. There is also a Young Adult Allies training on Sunday from 1 - 3:00 pm. Cost is $75.00 regular price, or sliding scale between $45 - $74 for those who cannot afford the full cost. Housing and meals are covered by registration fee.

Much more information is available online at http://uulmca.org/programs/events.html.


As We Build the Beloved Community...

by the Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones

Mientras Construimos Nuestra Querida Comunidad…

por la Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones

Becoming a People So Bold!

Every month our PACT (People Acting in Community Together) organizer Karen Belote and I set aside an hour to check in: What is most alive for us at that moment about our twin passions for justice and for this congregation? At our most recent one-to-one, Karen said, “You know, we’ve been working together for a few years now, yet I’ve never asked you about your passion for antiracism. I know it is really important to you, but … why? What’s the story behind this part of your call to ministry?”

My answer to this question usually begins with stories from my growing up in Texas. Some of you have heard about how I didn’t get to go roller skating with my friend Everett –because he is African American and I am white—when we were only eight. That moment of loss pierced my heart; it made racism something personal and direct. There were other losses, too: broken bridges between Latina and European-American girls in junior high school; walls built up between family members and beloved employees. But it wasn’t just the ever-present racial prejudice and ethnocentrism that hurt, piercing peoples of color around me with a “thousand tiny [and not-so-tiny] cuts” and costing everyone our wholeness. It was also the systemic racism that was soul-killing, keeping the divisions and injustices intact from generation to generation, denying access and opportunity to some and giving unearned advantages to others, like me.

Yet my passion for the work of understanding and undoing racism in myself and in the world—and my call to the ministry of helping to build multiracial, multicultural, anti-oppressive communities—are not rooted solely in the wounds of my past, nor are they driven by guilt or shame, although I have had to wrestle with these emotions too. My passion and my call now spring from fresh and ever-renewing sources. They rise up out of life-giving and joyful relationships that bridge those old forbidden boundaries and that have bloomed ever since I began to engage in the work of antiracism. These relationships make multiracial, multicultural community something personal and direct. My passion and my call are fed by ever-increasing experiences of communities that are learning how to celebrate and enhance our diversities, even while dealing with the challenges, confusions, and conflicts that arise when we invite differences to speak out loud. Communities like ours here at FUCSJ. Communities I’m honored to be part of throughout our Unitarian Universalist movement. Communities I’m coming to know here in San José. Communities available to all of us—and that we can help create.

In short, I am committed to the work of antiracism, multiculturalism, and anti-oppression because it makes me more alive and more whole. It lifts me up, it turns me on, it gives me hope, it grows my soul. It’s personal and direct.

Through worship this February, we’ll be experiencing ways to grow our souls, ways to discover more life and more hope, as we look at how we can dismantle divisions and celebrate diversities—both inside our own being and out in the wider world. How are we becoming a “People So Bold”?1 I can’t wait to dive deeper into our learning and growing together!

With gratitude for your calling me to be all that I am and to bring to this work all that I have,


¡Llegar a ser un Pueblo tan Osado!

Cada mes nuestra organizadora de PACT (Gente Actuando en Comunidad Juntos) Karen Belote y yo reservamos una hora para una plática de evaluación: ¿qué esta más vivo para nosotros en ese momento sobre nuestras pasiones gemelas de la justicia y por esta congregación? En nuestro más reciente uno a uno, Karen dijo, “sabes, hemos estado trabajado juntas durante algunos años, sin embargo, nunca le he preguntado sobre su pasión por el antirracismo. Sé que es muy importante para usted, pero... ¿por qué? ¿Cuál es la historia detrás de esta parte de la llamada al Ministerio?”.

Mi respuesta a esta pregunta por lo general comienza con las historias de mi desarrollo en Texas. Algunos de ustedes han oído hablar de cuando no me dieron permiso para ir a patinar con mi amigo Everett –porque él es negro y yo blanca—cuando teníamos sólo ocho. Ese momento de pérdida desagarró mi corazón; esto hizo al racismo algo personal y directo. Hubo otras pérdidas, también: puentes rotos entre las niñas Latinas y Europeo-estadounidense en la escuela secundaria; muros construidos entre los miembros de la familia y los empleados queridos. Pero no fue sólo el prejuicio racial omnipresente y el etnocentrismo que lastima, desgarrando gente de color alrededor de mí con un “mil diminutos [y no tan pequeños] cortes” y costándole a todos nuestra integridad. También era el racismo sistémico que fue matando el alma, manteniendo las divisiones y las injusticias intactas de generación en generación, negando el acceso y las oportunidades a algunos y dándoles ventajas no ganadas a otros, como yo.

Sin embargo, mi pasión por el trabajo de comprender y deshacer el racismo en mí misma y en el mundo—y mi llamada al Ministerio de ayudar a construir comunidades multirraciales, multiculturales y antiopresivas—no se basan únicamente en las heridas de mi pasado, ni son impulsadas por la culpa o la vergüenza, aunque he tenido que luchar con estas emociones también. Ahora, mi pasión y mi llamada surgen de frescas y siempre renovadas fuentes. Ellas emergen de relaciones llenas de vida y felicidad que salvan los antiguos límites prohibidos y que han florecido desde que comencé a participar en la labor de antirracismo. Estas relaciones hacen a la comunidad multirracial, multicultural algo personal y directo. Mi pasión y mi llamada son alimentadas por las siempre crecientes experiencias de las comunidades que están aprendiendo cómo celebrar y mejorar nuestras diversidades, incluso mientras que hacen frente a los desafíos, confusiones y conflictos que surgen cuando invitamos a las diferencias a hablar en voz alta. Las comunidades como la nuestra aquí en FUCSJ. Comunidades de las que me siento honrada de ser parte de a lo largo de nuestro movimiento Unitario Universalista. Comunidades que estoy llegando a conocer aquí en San José. Comunidades disponibles para todos nosotros, y que podemos ayudar a crear.

En resumen, estoy comprometida con el trabajo del antirracismo, multiculturalismo y anti-opresión porque me hace más viva y más completa. Me levanta, me emociona, me da esperanza, hace crecer mi alma. Es personal y directo.

A través de los servicios religiosos este febrero, estaremos experimentando formas para crecer nuestras almas, formas para descubrir más la vida y con más esperanza, mientras vemos cómo podemos desmantelar las divisiones y celebrar la diversidad, tanto dentro de nuestro propio ser y en el resto del mundo. ¿Cómo llegaremos a ser un “Pueblo tan osado”?2 No puedo esperar para sumergirme más profundamente en nuestro aprendizaje y crecimiento juntos!

Con gratitud por llamarme me a ser todo lo que soy y a dar a este trabajo todo lo que tengo,



The Not-So-Secret Circle Supper Society

by Shirley Worth

Who doesn’t enjoy a dinner party? Sitting next to someone you may have just met, perhaps with an old chum on your other side. Exchanging pleasantries and polite remarks over canapés and drinks. Progressing on to amusing anecdotes and personal stories over salad and entree. Sharing jokes and laughs over dessert. Going home with funny stories, and perhaps a new friend or two. And always, of course with that frisson of excitement – what disaster could happen? The entree dropped on the floor? The prim parishioner in his / her cups revealing a dark secret past? Being unexpectedly recruited for a volunteer post?

Perhaps you dread the idea of sitting at a table with six or seven others you have never met. “What could we possibly have to say to each other?” you may think. Not to worry, says Circle Supper regular Henry Ruddle. “It is centered around food,” he reminds us. You and your fellow guests have “at least one thing in common – the church – and a major incentive to entertain (or at least not offend) each other, doing the most natural thing in the world – eating and drinking.”

In the days before movies, TV and Super Mario Brothers, dinner parties were a major form of entertainment. Today, we may have to learn about this fine old tradition by watching Jane Austin movies. “Some guests work hard and come prepared. They have topics and anecdotes in mind, try to share the conversation so that everyone has a chance to speak, and bring tasty food. Some guests wing it and hope for the best”, says Henry. Rarely, “one guest has tried to hog the conversation, and it has been a pleasure to see the other guests work together to rein things in without ever being rude.”

To Dave Proulx, “the Circle Suppers provide a formal means for us to spend informal time with other folks from church in a relaxed social setting, and get to know them better. There is no other agenda, unlike meetings etc, and it’s a smaller group than other church social activities, so it fills an important niche.”

Hosts provide a table and beverages; guests are asked to bring either appetizers, salad and bread, entree or dessert. Sometimes the host suggests a game of some kind; sometimes conversation takes its entertaining course. In any case, says Henry, “you have a delightful time... (or at least) a funny story to tell later.”

Each month, Circle Supper Coordinator Barbara Derbyshire suggests a couple of possible dates and asking for willing hosts. She then announces who your host and fellow diners will be, suggests each person’s contribution, and provides contact information. The host takes it from there, setting the time and organizing any other details for the supper. E-mail is the primary medium, but telephone users can also be accommodated.

Sign up at the table in Hattie Porter Hall after the service, or contact Barbara at CircleSuppers@aol.com, or 408-370-2219.


Gift of Service
by Genie Bernardini
Volunteer Recognition: Dianne Saichek—Beyond the Call of Duty

Please send your one-sentence salute to me at geniebee@hotmail.com

We have had the pleasure of listening to Dianne Saichek’s musical gifts for five years, including her beautiful offertories and charming traveling music as the children are assembling on the labyrinth. And, fortunately, it has been a pleasure for her too. “I LOVE my job,” she says, giving special thanks to Rev. Nancy and Frank Farris for their guidance and support.

But Dianne has done far more than her paid staff position requires, due to her deep devotion to this church and an unusually generous spirit. She has donated her time to provide an after-school music enrichment program for TSCC children; made a CD of popular hymns for the SSM; and played for many, many church functions, including the seven weddings of same-sex couples married in our church. (She also arranged for free photos for each of these couples.) And the special service she has given to our church choir in a multitude of ways is remarkable and very much appreciated.

In addition to these contributions to the church, she is an absolutely delightful person with a devilish sense of humor and a fun-loving spirit, and you would do yourself a favor by getting to know her, if you haven’t already.

For all that you are and all that you have given us, Dianne, we are most grateful!

One-Sentence Salutes

“Many thanks to Kathy Johnson who keeps our brochures ordered and orderly!”

—Liz Owen

“I’d like to thank Dan Zulevic for steering and organizing the Ad Hoc singing group.”

—Claire Wagner

“I thank Genie Bernardini for her inspirational leadership of Band of Writers.”

—Catherine Pelizzari

“I thank John Burk for carrying the torch for social justice, a foundation of our church.”

—Dena Dickinson

Volunteer Opportunities:

You make FUSJ what it is! Whatever your talent and availability, there is an opportunity for you to serve. Contact Volunteer Coordinating Team members Liz Owen at lowen@data-time.com or Bob Miess at bob@floweringenterprises.com


You can make all the difference. Henry Ruddle, the Stewardship and Fundraising member of the Program and Operations Council (POC) is looking for ideas and for volunteers to join the new Fundraising Council and the 2010-2011 Canvass Committee. If you have a fundraising idea or are planning a fundraiser, let Henry know so it can be evaluted and perhaps calendared.

(Big idea for 2010: Advanced Planning.) If you are willing to help out either by serving on a committee or less formally, Henry promises a minimum of meetings and a maximum of action. Contact Henry at 408-234-3670 or stewardship@sanjoseuu.org.


Ready to Become a New Member of the First Unitarian Church of San José?

Membership means you have found your spiritual home in Unitarian Universalism and here at FUCSJ; it means you feel called to offer your time, talent, and treasure to help build this Beloved Community. We welcome you!

Please set up a meeting with Rev. Nancy, revnpj@yahoo.com, and then plan to participate in the next New-Member In-gathering!

¿Listo para ser un Nuevo Miembro de la Primera Iglesia Unitaria de San José?

Membresía significa que tú has encontrado tu hogar espiritual en el Unitario Universalismo y aquí en la FUCSJ; significa que tú has sentido el llamado de ofrecer tu tiempo, talento y tesoro para ayudar a construir a esta amada comunidad. ¡Le damos la bienvenida!

Por favor, tenga una reunión con la Rev. Nancy revnpj@yahoo.com y entonces planee participar en el siguiente Reunión de Nuevos Miembros.

New Member Ingathering, Valentine’s Day Sunday, February 14

Youth (14 years of age and older) and adults who have decided that this church community and faith deserves their commitment because it affirms the values that they hold most dear are invited to join The First Unitarian Church community as an official member. There will be a new member ingathering on Sunday, February 14. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a member of this congregation please contact the Rev. Geoff Rimositis, 408-292-3858, ext. 25, GRimositis@sanjoseuu.org Show your love for this faith and make it known to the world


Church Yearbook 2010: Sign Up For Your FREE Portrait Sitting

Remember your school yearbooks with the pictures of events, clubs, classes and, of course, portraits of each person? The 2010 FUCSJ Yearbook will be similar, and, even better, will include a directory of member and friend names and addresses.

Photo sessions for portraits will run from late February to late March, and the church is counting on you to sign up! The more member and friend photos in the directory, the more useful it will be to everyone and the more activity pages will be included. Please bring whichever family members you wish to appear in the photos, even if they do not attend the church. If you are not yet a pledging member or friend of FUCSJ, but still consider or plan to consider FUCSJ your church home, you are welcome too!

Olan Mills has offered to produce the Yearbook and take the portraits at no cost to the church. You will be offered an opportunity to sit for two poses (the official one for the Yearbook and a fun one), and to purchase prints. You are under no obligation to buy. Everyone who sits will receive a free 8x10 print and a free copy of the directory when the final printed product is delivered in May. PLEASE NOTE: the official portraits will have a white background. The photo sessions will be held:

  1. Tuesday, February 23 / 2:00 - 9:30 p.m. / Fireside Room
  2. Wednesday, February 24 / 2:00 - 9:30 p.m. / Fireside Room
  3. Friday, March 5 / 2:00 - 9:30 p.m. / Fireside Room
  4. Saturday, March 6 / 9:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. / Fireside Room
  5. Tuesday, March 9 / 2:00 - 9:30 p.m. / Fireside Room
  6. Wednesday, March 10 / 2:00 - 9:30 p.m. / Fireside Room
  7. Friday, March 19 / 2:00 - 9:30 p.m. / Fireside Room
  8. Saturday, March 20 / 9:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. / Fireside Room

Please sign up for a sitting by calling Susan Burke-Diquisto in the church office at 408-292-3858 or by e-mailing her at fucsj@sanjoseuu.org. Or you may sign-up during social hour after any Sunday service before the sessions begin. View available sessions at http://www.sanjoseuu.org/WhatsHappening/yearbook2010.html

Two Exciting Yearbook Contests!

Photography Raffle!
Submit photos of church events during 2009 or 2010 to the Yearbook or Church Circular for consideration by Sunday, February 7 for a chance to win two tickets to Hold on To Love, produced by the Tabard Theater Company and playing at the Theater on San Pedro Square until February 20. A raffle will be held and a winner announced at that Sunday's service. Send your photos to Henry Ruddle at stewardship @ sanjoseuu.org

Traditional? Contemporary? Glass? Which type of representation will win? We won't know until all submissions are in by March 5.

Make Your Chalice Design The Yearbook Cover!
Submit your drawing, painting, photograph or other suitable representation of a UU Chalice by Friday, March 5. Winner will be announced at the March 7 service. The image will also be converted into a 16x20 mosaic print which will be framed and hung in the church. Winner will also receive two tickets to Lady, Be Good, produced by the Tabard Theater Company and playing at the Theater on San Pedro Square until March 27. Send your questions or submissions to Henry Ruddle at stewardship @ sanjoseuu.org

  • 0106-10

    Circling Around by Torchy Hunter

    As the editor for Circling Around, I accost people in Hattie Porter Hall wearing my “Tell Me Everything” sign, or, if you’d rather actually think about what you want in here, e-mail me at torchy.hunter@gmail.com. I want to be up to date with you, so here’s what we need: birthdays (especially those with zeros), parties of any kind, promotions, college destinations, anything that you diverse groups are doing is interesting to everyone else. For example, in this issue:

    Who is giving you a New Year’s Rant? What European country that you’d never guess is having a drought? Which 12 people have hopes for the New Year? Who is just beginning an unbelievable art career?

    Gentle Readers: what follows is a rant. If you don’t want to be ranted at today, please skip this and go to tart remarks made about friends of yours. Rant: It is beginning to come to my attention that some of you are having birthdays you don’t tell me about. This is serious bad. Do not think of telling me stuff like this as private, or you’re too shy, or why would anybody want to know. Because we’re all part of this community! Otherwise, if I don’t get stuff from you, I have to go around HPH interrupting you and asking you whatever question occurs to me. It also seems to me that some of you have children who are not going directly to prison after graduating this coming spring. We’ve seen these kids for most of their lives, and by now have an interest in where they’re going next. Did you get a new dog or lose an old cat? Have you changed jobs or found one, or lost one? You don’t really have to tell me about lost ones unless you want to. What movie did you like? Tell me this stuff or else. It’s easy: torchy.hunter@gmail. Maybe we’ll get to you turning in your neighbors who know these things. Vee haff vays. Talk to me. End of rant.

    Several UUSJ members, such as Barbara Grover, Jean Embree and Carol Greene pictured here, took in Torchy’s December showing at Crema Coffee Roasting Co. on the Alameda.

    And now the announcement that nobody saw coming: Torchy Hunter, who took her first art class at age 60, not only was invited to show two new paintings in the Alumni Show at Evergreen Valley College, but also had two paintings accepted for a group show at a gallery in Oakland, which will run for six weeks. This is the first time I have ever submitted anything to a show when I didn’t already know the person. It’s really kind of woweeee. There will be an opening reception, and if you’d like to come, consider this your invitation (demand). It’s February 13th, time not decided yet. Please ask me about it, or you could contact the gallery at www.expressionsgallery.com. It’s on Ashby just off San Pablo. Puhleeze come. I’m really excited, as this is a role I haven’t yet played. My stuff in two galleries at once! I’m pretty darned impressed with myself. I wonder if this will make me clean up the house.

    Don’t forget Cinequest is coming up. Last time I watched a 5-hour movie. In Spanish. Katy Dawson changes her whole life for Cinequest. So does Dana Grover. Ask any of us about it.

    Mary McGuinness’s update: "So here I am at the end of week number three. The time has really flown by. I’ve been able to tolerate the dose OK, my counts have not dropped too much, and the side effects have not been unmanageable. It was Mum’s birthday yesterday, and she had talked about a restaurant she remembers going to when she was first here in the US in the 50’s, it called Trader Vic’s. So I took her there for dinner last night, My friend Anne Tobin arrives in today, as long as she can get out of Dublin. Everyone has been great, bringing Mum and myself wonderful food, and chauffeuring me back and forth to the hospital. Once I finish on Friday 1/29, I’ll have a week off from all drug therapy. Mum and Anne will still be here, so I really hope I’ll be well enough to go do a few things with them. Keep your fingers crossed for me.”

    It’s Ireland with the drought. Mary’s mum Sally McGuinness told me the winter has been so cold that people have been letting faucets run all night to keep them from freezing. Ergo: drought in the land with a hundred shades of green.

    And now (cue trumpets): How The Beloved Community answered the original question “What are your hopes for the New Year?” Jim Rumbaugh: for the Democrats to get together. Frances Schwab: a teaching job. Anne Gunn: Peace. And find a way to manage our oil. Crystal Lanier: To not hurt. And to find happy ways to be of service. Bob Redfern: That the roof stops leaking. Dena Dickinsen: Health and balance. Dani Hope: Ease and simplicity. Joyce Miller: The health care bill. Bob Meiss: That I’ll be fully alive at the end of it. Henry Ruddle: A happy home and more clients. Bob Owen: Health reform. Catherine Pelizzari: That Obama’s effectiveness increases. Bill Ardrey: That it’s better than ‘09. A little of Amen to that.

    Your Church Board of Directors Meeting, December 16, 2009

    by Bob Redfern, Board Secretary

    Your Board had a busy meeting December 16th. Here is a summary of what we discussed and decided.

    Our ministers are involved in a variety of activities, which they reliably (and more timely than I) report in their columns in this newsletter. However, I should report that Rev. Geoff and Jeff Norment started the Common Security Club, a meeting of five sessions involving help for people re-ordering their lives: getting by with less, living a more “green” lifestyle, and other timely topics.

    We discussed the “Listening Campaign,” which Rick Merritt of the Board is participating in. The campaign and its inspiration from PACT started on December 15th, with an organizational training session for Listener Volunteers on January 14th. When your listener contacts you, let him or her know your concerns and hopes, especially in the area of Building our Community through Engaging our Differences.

    We had a few unexpected expenses such as a failed downstairs dishwasher and permit and alarm repairs. Nonetheless, our finances are in the black and Treasurer Bob Howd is optimistic that will continue through the end of our fiscal year in May. After the year is over, we plan to have an audit and make that a regular yearly policy.

    The Board discussed the Draft Policies we are charged with making permanent such as Lifespan Faith Development policy.

    Finally, we voted to accept Henry Ruddle to the Program and Operations Committee as Stewardship representative. We voted to accept Claire Wagner and Patrick Smiley to the Committee on Ministry, and with great regret, we accepted Michael Payne-Alex’s resignation from the Board. Watch this space for an interim replacement, and don’t hesitate to say yes if a member of the nominating committee calls to ask you to join us. We will make you very welcome and comfortable when you say yes.

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    Program and Operations Council (POC) Report: Generous Giving and a Church Fundraising Feat

    Members of this congregation, you have contributed to three recent fundraisers. Your generosity supports Unitarian Universalist values. The result of each fundraiser follows:

    Guest at Your Table — Thank you, all who contributed funds to your “Guest at Your Table Box” and brought them to the church for this Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC) program. The $540.14 collected will help change the lives of people around the world.

    Help for Haiti — The January 11 Sunday service collection was donated to the joint UUSC-UUA Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund. Additionally, many of you wrote checks to the Church for this relief fund. Through your generous donations, the Church has collected $3,666.30 to send to UUSC-UUA Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund. For information from UUSC about the relief fund, go to www.uusc.org. Quoting words of Rev. Nancy, “Thank you for your generous hearts and your sense of connection to this hurting country and its people!”

    Service Auction – This auction was a fundraiser for our church. Being auctioned were gifts of services and goods that folks of this congregation donated. The auction had two parts — a Silent Auction and a Service Auction – and a community dinner between them. Dan Zulevic, the auctioneer, teased the bidding higher and higher. The auction raised $9,690.00.


    Upcoming Events

    Tuesday, February 9

    Peninsula Interweave Gathering at FUCSJ
    Peninsula Interweave, a UU Bisexual, Gay, Lesbian and Transgender & Allies group for the South Bay and Peninsula, will meet Tuesday evening Feb. 9, 7:00-9:00 pm in the Ramsden Fireside Room. You are invited to join us for socializing and discussion of current topics of interest.

    Sunday, February 14, 6:00-8:00 p.m.

    “Reading the Five Gospels along with Bob”

    Bob Miess will guide this monthly discussion of The Five Gospels: What Did Jesus Really Say? The Search for the Authentic Words of Jesus by Robert W. Funk. The group will meet the second Sunday of each month, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. New readers will always be welcome.

    Reading for the first session: (Please read and note any insights, questions, etc. that arise for you) Preface (Pages ix – xxii) and Introduction (Pages 1-38)

    This book includes five Gospels:Mark, Matthew, Luke, John, and Thomas, with sayings of Jesus color-coded to show the conclusion of the Jesus Seminar on the likelihood that Jesus said something like this. It also includes an introduction to the principles used to draw these conclusions, and explanations of the scholars’ reasoning about key sayings.

    Questions? Information on how to get the book? Contact Bob Miess at Bob@FloweringEnterprises.com or 408-781-7073

    Thursday, March 4

    Women’s Alliance

    The Women’s Alliance continues its exploration into the varied traditions in earth-based spiritualities. We will meet at the home of Jean vonKaenel in Los Gatos on Thursday, February 4, from 7:15 to 9:15 pm. Please call Nancy Coleman at 408 985 5778 or email nbcoleman@gmail.com for directions or more information. The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, March 4.

    March 5-7, 2010

    Women and Religion UUA Retreat

    The UUA Women & Religion group will hold its annual retreat the weekend of March 5-7, 2010 at Enchanted Hills near Napa. The entire retreat costs only $125, and is half price for newcomers. This fee includes all programs, six delicious meals, and private cabins with linens and bathrooms. Come and meet women from throughout our Pacific Central District. You can ride-share to Napa. For more information or to register, contact Registrar: Jewel Whitaker, 1512 San Carlos Lane, Modesto, CA 95355, (209) 578-5475. Or call Jean Embree at (408) 984-5838, Meg Bowman at (408) 292-1172 or Barbara Schonborn at (650) 967-6756.

    July 14-18

    Church Campout 2010

    by MM “Waiting for July” Feldman

    Great news, UU campers! The early bird gets the best group campsite. We managed to book the large group campsite again at the same wonderful location as last year’s campout. The dates are Wednesday, July 14 through Sunday, July 18, 2010, just when you feel like getting out of town and soaking in a river. The location is McConnell State Recreation Area, near Turlock, about 2 hours from San Jose. The drive is worth it, because this campground has it all: easy access to the Merced River with sandy beaches for the kids, a bath house with showers and flush toilets, lots of picnic tables, and running water right in the campsite. It has everything we need for another fantastic campout. All you need to bring is your tent and sleeping bag! We do communal cooking, and all the food and cooking equipment is provided. This campout is appropriate for pretty much anyone of any age. It’s easy camping. And you can bring your dogs! Email me at mm@feldmo.com if you want to be added to an church-campout email list. Or just watch your newsletter and email for announcements.

    UU Hikers&Friends

    By Joyce Miller
    Here is the February hiking schedule. Be sure to call if you want to hike unless you are a regular, then let me know if you are not coming. Only big rain storms cancel hikes.

    Only big rain storms cancel hikes. In case of rain, call the morning of the hike to find out if we are changing the venue to the Stanford dish or if the hike is cancelled. My home phone is 408 730-1052 and cell is 570-7052. Use my cell phone after 7:30 am. All other times use my home phone. See you on the trails!

    Wednesday, February 3
    Sanborn County Park, moderate to strenuous. This can be a long hike up to Summit Rock (about 9 miles) or we can stop at Indian Rock (7 miles). We can decide at the trail head. Meet at US Bank (formerly Downey Bank) parking lot in Saratoga at 8:30 am.

    Saturday, February 6
    Joseph Grant County Park. 6 miles, moderate. (We could make it 9.8 miles if we want to by doing an additional loop.) This should be a beautiful winter hike with unrestricted views of the hills. Meet at VTA Park and Ride at Capital and Alum Rock at 8:00 am.

    Wednesday, February 10
    Windy Hill, 6 miles, moderate. Meet at Page Mill/280 Park and Ride at 8:30 am.

    Saturday, February 13
    Almaden Quicksilver, Mockingbird entrance, 7 miles, moderate. Meet at Bed, Bath and Beyond at Almaden Plaza at 8:00 am.

    Wednesday, February 17

    Stevens Creek/Fremont Older, 6 miles, moderate. Meet at trail head at 8:30 am. Directions to trail head: Take Foothill Expressway as though you were going to Rancho San Antonio. Don’t turn off Foothill. Go about 1.5 miles to entrance to Stevens Creek Park on the left. You can see the parking lot below you as you go around a curve. Turn left and go straight ahead to the parking lot. There is $6 parking fee.

    Saturday, February 20
    Sierra Azule, 6-8 miles (we can decide that morning how much we want to do). Meet at Bed, Bath and Beyond at Almaden Plaza at 8:00 am.

    Wednesday, February 24
    Huddart County Park, 7 miles, moderate. We will do the longer hike up to Skyline. Meet at Page Mill/280 at 8:30 am.

    Saturday, February 27
    Mission Peak, 5 miles, moderate to strenuous. Meet at VTA park and ride on Capital at Alum Rock at 8:00 am or at the trail head at Ohlone College. Call for details.

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    Safe, reliable car for sale:

    1997 silver Volvo 850 sedan, good condition, automatic transmission, power steering, air bags, ABS, cruise control, radio, CD player, just smogged. $2800. Call Catherine Pelizzari at (408) 945-9848 or email to caleeson@aol.com


    Spotlight on Social Justice

    The Social Justice Council blog appears on the Church Webpage at: http://www.sanjoseuu.org/socialjusticeblog/. You can subscribe to the YahooGroup For Social Justice News & Events at: sjsjuu-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.


    For Pastoral Care

    Our community strives to offer compassion, companionship, healing, and joy to all its members. Our pastoral care coordinators can help you find the listening ear or helping hands that you may need in difficult times.

    • For pastoral care in English, please contact our lay Pastoral Associate Coordinator, Rev. Donna Lenahan: (home) 408-354-9024; (cell) 408-204-6565; e-mail: djlenahan@aol.com.
    • For pastoral care in Spanish, please contact our Spanish-Speaking Ministries Coordinator, Roberto Padilla: 408-991-3212; e-mail: paor69@yahoo.com.

    Contacting the Ministers

    Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones and Rev. Geoff Rimositis feel honored to serve this congregation, and we cherish your trust! Here is how reach us:

    Cuidado Pastoral

    Nuestra comunidad se esfuerza en ofrecer la compasión,el compañerismo curativo, y la alegría a todos susmiembros. Nuestros coordinadores en cuidado pastoral pueden ayudarle a encontrar un oído que escucha, o lasmanos que ayudan cuando ustedes lo pudieran necesitaren épocas difíciles. Para el cuidado pastoral en inglés, por favor, comuníquese con nuestro Coordinador Asociado Laico en Cuidado Pastoral, la Rev. Donna Lenahan: (casa) 408-354-9024; (celular) 408-204-6565; e-mail: djlenahan@aol.com. Para el cuidado pastoral en español, por favor comuníquese con nuestro Coordinador de los Ministeriosen Español, Roberto Padilla: 408-991-3212; e-mail: paor69@yahoo.com.

    Contactando a los Ministros

    La Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones y El Rev. Geoff Rimositis se sienten honrados por servir a esta congregación, y nosotros apreciamos su confianza! Aquí nosotros estamos a su alcance:


    Tracy Avent, darkmuzik@yahoo.com

    Bob Redfern, rredfern@charter.net

    Bob Howd, BHowd@aol.com

    Joyce Miller, j408miller@sbcglobal.net

    Tamara Payne-Alex, paynealex@sprintmail.com

    Dena Dickinson, dickiden@comcast.net

    Cheri Goodman, cheri.goodman@sbcglobal.net
    Rick Merritt, rbmerrit@cmp.com
    Madeline Morrow, madelinemorrow@earthlink.net

    Church Staff

    Senior Minister, Ext. 23
    The Rev. Nancy Palmer Jones, revnpj@yahoo.com

    Assoc. Minister For Religious Education, Ext. 25
    The Rev. Geoff Rimositis , Grimositis@Sanjoseuu.org

    Office Manager, Ext. 21
    Susan Burke-Diquisto, fucsj@sanjoseuu.org

    Coordinator of Spanish Speaking Ministries, Ext. 24 or (408) 824-8831
    Roberto Padilla, paor69@yahoo.com

    Bookkeeper / Sue Evanicky

    Custodian / Edgar Cruz

    Nursery Staff / Jusica Nunez & Maria Elena Olvera

    Church Office
    : (408) 292-3858
    Fax: (408) 292-4744
    E-mail             fucsj@sanjoseuu.org
    URL                http://www.sanjoseuu.org

    Thank you to our volunteers!
    Our Church Circular is published on the first and third Wednesdays of each month. Circulation is about 500.

    Editors: Catherine Leeson Pelizzari and Shirley Worth; Circular.Editors@gmail.com
    Shirley will be editor for the February 17 and March 17, 2010 issues. Catherine will be editor for the March 3 and April 7, 2010 issues.

    Translator: Roberto Padilla

    Layout: Henry Ruddle 408-234-3670 henry_L@ruddle.com (www.ruddle.com)

    Assembly Coordinator: Gretchen Leavitt

    Assembly Crew: Jeff & Ellie White

    Thanks for all the work you do and care you put into the newsletter.

    Want to Receive the Newsletter?

    To receive the newsletter on paper, fill out the form at this link:

    or call (408) 292-3858, ext. 31.

    To receive the newsletter via email, emessage steve.carr@earthlink.net

    Next issue deadline: 3:00 p.m., Wednesday, February 10, 2010

    Next issue assembly: Tuesday, February 16, 2010

    Next issue mailing: Wednesday, February 17, 2010