Author: Mary Bennett

Wish Tree for May

Jodie Miller will be on site for World Labyrinth Day and encouraging you to write a wish and hang from our trees.

We’ve decided on the vine maples in the courtyard. We considered the tree/s in the centre of the garden path labyrinth, or the two at either entrance, the cherry blossom at south entrance or the vine maples in the courtyard or our orchard of 14 apple trees. We especially liked that it’s easy to get to and visible to all. It’ll be easy to invite kids and all others to “make a wish” on Saturday, May 4. Watch this space for the transformation.
We will let the wishes fly for a while and then collect and bury them (as Yoko Ono does). So we’ll have to decide on a nice spot for the burial as well. Ono buries them at the Peace Tower in Iceland. Suggestions for UCV are welcome! (This is our first year doing this, but we already expect it will be the first annual).
Suggested colours are:
  • gold to symbolize prosperity
  • blue for courage
  • white for fidelity
  • pink for tenderness
  • green for good health.

Here’s a description of Yoko Ono’s Wish Tree Ongoing Installation.

And the instructions:

Make a wish. Write it down on a piece of paper. Fold it and tie it around a branch of a Wish Tree. Ask your friends to do the same. Keep wishing. Until the branches are covered with wishes.[2]

Yoko Ono’s comment:

  • As a child in Japan, I used to go to a temple and write out a wish on a piece of thin paper and tie it around the branch of a tree. Trees in temple courtyards were always filled with people’s wish knots, which looked like white flowers blossoming from afar.[1]
Here’s a good news story about making a public wishing tree. (I love good news stories). Traci Bunkers is the artist involved with a kids art camp and guerrilla art group.
A search of google reveals that wish trees are becoming popular for weddings and baby showers.

Herbal teas

If you’re not into decorating a tree at all, don’t worry. Just add some herbs to your tea. They say all herbs are healing on Beltane and will surely fix you up.

The point is, Beltane is a holiday for our renewal, time for new hopes and beginnings. Anything you decide or wish or manifest over a cup of tea on Beltane could actually work this time. (from mookychick)

There’s lavender, rosemary, thyme and sage around the grounds. Please pick a sacred bundle for using fresh or dried. Just add hot water.

Flower Crowns

We’ll have (but you could also bring) ivy, rosemary and lavender for a good base.
We’ll also bring wire, twist ties, ribbon and yarn for fastening things on. If you have “floral tape” or “floral wire” and can bring along, please do.
And here’s a very easy approach to do with kids. Paper bags and duct tape are involved.

April on the Garden Path Labyrinth

The grape hyacinths are in abundance. Snowdrops and crocuses have now gone back underground.

We have a few daffodils lingering on and the tulips are blooming.

The primulas are in full bloom or coming into their own. Thanks to Hanno for the pale pink perennial primulas. Last fall I divided some of them up so they’re spread around a bit.

We lost the Huntington’s carpet rosemary over the winter, but the other two rosemary plants at entrance on south side are doing fine. (Yes,you can pinch a sprig if you wish.)

Around the courtyard labyrinth, 3 of the 5 new lavender are healthy. A 4th looks like it’s alive — barely, and the 5th might well be dead. But perhaps only sleeping?

I’m watching for calendula sprouts. We’ve usually had lots of calendula but I haven’t spotted a sprout as yet.

I divided up some echinacea and rudbeckia from other parts of the grounds and planted around the perimeter. They won’t bloom for months yet.

Did you buy some tulips or daffodils in a pot and don’t need them any more? Bring to the labyrinth. They say they don’t bloom again, but they will. Maybe not this year, but the following year and we have lots of space. Or are you the kind of gardener who digs up everything as the season progresses. All “old unwanted” bulbs are very welcome. Just contact us if you want to leave them somewhere if we’re not around.

Thanks to Keith Wilkinson for these photos.

New Study Group: The Earth Has a Soul

Update: This group will start in September as an in-person gathering on the 4th Sunday of each month 12:30-1:30 pm

Members of the Earth Spirituality group are planning a monthly study group following the chapters in this book of quotations from Carl Jung. We will meet in person or by zoom for an hour each month. Participants will take turns leading the group. Please send a note to earthspiritucv@gmail.com if you’d like to be involved. Give us your preference for online or in person and what times work for you.

Fill out this google form here to let us know when and where would work for you.

We’ll set up a doodle to finalize a regular date once we get some preliminary feedback.

 

Religious Naturalism – Take Two

Last month, Steven preached on Religious Naturalism. The service was so well received with numerous comments on our email list from as far away as Ecuador, that we’ll get “Take Two” this coming Sunday, April 14.

Here’s the sermon from earlier.

Religious Naturalism

If you want to take a deeper dive into the UUA document that Steven refers to go here:

https://www.uua.org/sites/live-new.uua.org/files/documents/coa/engagingourtheodiversity.pdf 

The words by David Bumbaugh that Steven uses in his block quote come from page 90 of the report.  There is an interesting quote by Phillip Hewett on the next page

If this concept appeals to you (as it clearly does to many Unitarians), here are some links you might enjoy exploring:

https://religiousnaturalism.org/

http://religious-naturalist-association.org/

https://www.uua.org/ga/past/2006/13227.shtml

https://www.uuworld.org/articles/the-emerging-religious-humanism

https://www.uuabookstore.org/Reason-and-Reverence-P16872.aspx

https://www.meadville.edu/current-students/course-offerings/spring-term-2018-2019/course/religious-naturalism/8438948/

Forest Bathing in Pacific Spirit Park

Several of us in the Westside Unitarian Neighbourhood Group are embarking on “forest bathing” in Pacific Spirit Park. If you’d like to know when we’re going for a walk (probably 1-2 hours), let Mary know and she’ll send you a note when we have a time set (usually weekdays during the day, late morning or early afternoon.) We meet at 16th and Discovery and go from there. We sometimes go for a coffee or lunch together. Some of us bring walking poles.

Here’s an excerpt from a post from David Suzuki: https://davidsuzuki.org/story/nature-calms-the-brain-and-heals-the-body/

In Japan, scientists found people spending time in nature — shinrin-yoku or “forest bathing” — inhale “beneficial bacteria, plant-derived essential oils and negatively-charged ions” which interact with gut bacteria to strengthen the body’s immune system and improve both mental and physical health.

More information about the park. 

 

Do you love books?  and lunch? 

by Karen Theroux

The new UCV Potluck Book and Lunch Club brings together good books, delicious food, and lively conversation.  Unlike most book clubs, the PLB&LC doesn’t choose one book for everyone to read. Instead, members bring one, or two, or more favorites to describe and recommend. We go around the table highlighting what’s special about our choices, sometimes reading passages aloud, and we talk about how the books—magical, tragic, uplifting, revealing, inspiring, or sad—have touched and changed us. All books and all readers are welcome. 

If you love books, why not join the club?  Meetings are the last Thursday of the month, 11 to 1 in the Fireside Room.  

Here are some of the titles from the club’s most recent meetings: 

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie 

The Shoebox Bible by Alan Bradley

Here if You Need Me by Kate Braestrup

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kampkwanda

The Back of the Turtle by Thomas King 

Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

Celia’s Song by Lee Maracle

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Becoming by Michelle Obama

The Library Book by Susan Orlean

Sustenance by Rachel Rose

The Trans Generation by Ann Travers

Medicine Walk by Richard Wagamese

Sing Unburied Sing by Jesmyn Ward

Annabel by Kathleen Winter 

Once Upon a Time by Jane Yolen 

This One Looks Like a Boy by Lorimer Shenher

Did you know that our office assistant is a busy graphic designer?

UCV’S very own office assistant, Marcus Hynes, will be exhibiting a selection of his illustration and graphic design works alongside 30 other visual artists, musicians, makeup artists, fashion designers, etc. as part of an upcoming interdisciplinary art show, Raw Artists: Impact, on Sunday, April 14, from 5 pm onward at Celebrities on Davie Street.

http://heymarcus.ca/?portfolio=you-are-the-universe

Each participating artist is tasked with selling 20 tickets, which can be purchased online or from Marcus directly. (He’s in the office Monday – Thursday 9:30 to 2:30 pm).
Tickets are $20 each. Prints and posters will be available at the show. Your support would be very sincerely appreciated!

For more information at Marcus’ work, please visit http://www.heymarcus.ca.

Marcus recently designed covers for The Growler magazine.

Don’t miss Marcus’ workshop at UCV on Saturday, May 25 1 – 4 pm on creating posters, flyers and brochures.

We’ll use the free software program Open Office Writer. If you want to use your own word processing or publishing program, that’s OK too, but the demonstrations and prepared templates will be provided in OpenOffice.

This workshop is open to UCV members who are on committees who sponsor events.

Must preregister. Click the workshop link above or send email to Mary.

Recently Marcus worked with Steven to take Steven’s research from interviewing the UU Ministers of Canada and put into a 16-page booklet. You can download here.

What-We-Wish-People-Knew-About-Unitarian-Universalism

 

Talking About Trans and the UU World Article

You may have come across through email or facebook the responses to an article included in the most recent issue of UU World called “After L, G and B”.

Posted here are various statements in pdf form that you can download and read. We’ve also made some hard copies that will be available on Sunday morning on the bulletin board.

The UCV Genders & Sexualities Alliance (GSA) will be discussing further educational and awareness gatherings we might sponsor, such as the Transforming Hearts Collective six-session program called Transgender Inclusion in Congregations.

In the meantime, do consider how we as a congregation might mark March 31, the Transgender Day of Visibility, and save the date of May 3 for the film screening of “She’s A Boy I Knew” at UCV. 

Resources

UU World Article: After L, G and B

Tips for Talking About the Article

UU World Apology from Editor

CUC Statement on behalf of CUC, UU Ministers of Canada and Religious Educators: In Solidarity with Trans and Nonbinary UUs

Trans Day of Visibility Guide from City of Vancouver

Trans Style Guide by Zr. Alex Kapitan

UCV Art Exhibition & Book Launch at the Beaty Museum

by Catherine Stewart

( 50% sales to UCV Refugee Fund )

For the months of March and April, I am pleased to be exhibiting two suites of inkjet prints inspired by the bird collection at UBC.  Courtship Colour Studies, on display in the Fireside Room, are abstracted compositions based on the combined colours of male and female songbird specimens.

The Venus Takes Flight prints, hanging in the Sanctuary, were made by layering scans of bird plumage with those of beautiful textiles and working with them in PhotoShop to create ‘hybrid’ compositions. Information about the ideas behind this work can be found in the artist’s statement in the southwest corner of the Sanctuary. Half of all sales from this exhibition will be donated to the UCV Refugee Fund. (The other half will help to offset framing expenses for the exhibition.) Respective prices for framed prints are $525 and $725 respectively. If interested, please speak to me or email me at stewartcm@shaw.ca .

I am also currently exhibiting at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC. The Skin & Bones exhibition explores our complicated relationship with the animal world through photography, natural science and the applied art of fashion design. More information about the exhibition can be found at: http://beatymuseum.ubc.ca/whats-on/exhibitions/current-exhibitions/skin-bones/

BOOK LAUNCH EVENT

Everyone is welcome to join me the evening of April 18 to celebrate the release of my two photo books, ‘Skin & Bones’ and ‘Invoking Venus: Feathers and Fashion’, both based on my Beaty Museum exhibitions. At the launch, I will be speaking at 7 pm about utilizing the museum’s collections in my artistic work. Visitors will be able to explore my latest exhibition and the collections that inspired it. Admission is free or by donation to the museum.

Catherine is a member of the Buildings and Grounds Committee, helps out with Arts Committee, is on the Sunday Coffee Service Team, and is currently learning about the work of the UCV Refugee Committee. More about the artist and her work can be found at: www.catherinestewart.net

Whisk away to a relaxing June weekend!

Camp Sasamat is 45 minutes away from UCV set on acres of forest at Sasamat Lake in Port Moody.
Come for an afternoon float, campfire sing-a-long, choral workshop, trail walk or fellowship by the water. All meals provided. Accommodations include accessible cabins and showers. All ages welcome and many bring friends and family.
This year’s choral workshop will be led by Kathryn Nicholson (music director for the Helena Choir).
Gabriella Harvey, Jazzfly Video Productions
www.jazzfly.com
Our guest speaker will be Gabi Harvey with a talk entitled:  “Tale of a South American Traveller: A Happy Journey of Exploration”.
https://tricitieschamber.com/ambassador-gabriella-harvey/
Jazzfly Video Productions
www.jazzfly.com
May 31 – June 2, 2019
Sponsored by Beacon Unitarian Church