Category: Community

Community social gatherirngs; mens and womens groups; covenant groups, neighbourhood groups and news from the communications, membership and care and concern committees.

Tips for Reducing Food Waste this Festive Season

Laura Trotta: “Every time we throw food in the bin we’re not just wasting our money. We’re discarding the vast amounts of resources, energy and water that it took to produce, process, store, refrigerate, transport and cook the food.

Coco Confusion / Credit: New Gastronome

Reducing food waste is one of the top five solutions to climate change listed in the New York Times bestseller “Drawdown…” While animal agriculture creates an estimated 18% of greenhouse gas emissions.

As we move through December and into the New Year, let’s remember to reduce food waste and to include vegan and vegetarian dishes in our Winter season feasting.

Suggested Links

Tips for Reducing Food Waste

Vegan and Vegetarian Recipes

Food and Climate Action

Giving Food Back the Value it Deserves

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reducing food waste: photo of mushroom hunters in a Maple Ridge forest

reducing food waste: photo of mushroom hunters in a Maple Ridge forest

Foraging for Wild Mushrooms in Maple Ridge

Credit: Slow Food Vancouver

In the photos above, we find a group of friends engaging in an ancient (even timeless) human activity …foraging for wild mushrooms. They’re members of the Vancouver chapter of the Slow Food movement, and they’re foraging for mushrooms in a forest near Maple Ridge.

You might ask: What is Slow Food? And what does it have to do with climate action and reducing food waste?


According to Slow Food: “the key to fighting food waste is to give food back the value that it deserves.”

At a personal level, this includes buying local and seasonal foods, throwing away less food, eating out less, eating less, purchasing food that’s been fairly and sustainably produced … and eating at least once a week with someone you love. … Commend­able choices and more so during the Winter festive season.

Slow Food calls for tackling the climate crisis through the adoption of environmentally-friendly practices, at all stages along the food supply chain, following a seed-to-landfill trajectory.


The roots of the Slow Food movement are found in Italy, when Carlo Petrini and a group of activists came together in the 1980s to “defend regional traditions, good food, gastronomic pleasure and a slow pace of life.”

Petrini a centre-left journalist and food critic who wrote for Communist daily newspapers came to prominence, in 1986, as the leader of a protest in Rome against the opening of the first McDonald’s in Italy.

Located near the Spanish Steps, in the heart of Rome, the 400 seat fast-food outlet was the largest McDonald’s in the world to open at the time.

Petrini and his friends brought gastronomy and the weight of Italian food and wine culture to the front line in the battle against fast food and industrialized food production.

The international Slow Food movement was launched, in 1989, when delegates from 15 countries gathered in Paris to sign the Slow Food Manifesto.

The movement has since evolved and spread (mushroomed so-to-speak) to more than 160 countries.

The mission of Slow Food includes defending local food traditions, promoting artisanal foods and preserving food biodiversity.

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Net Fishing for Wild Salmon / Credit: Okanagan Nation Alliance Fisheries

Closer to home, this time in the Okanagan Valley, a Slow Food presidium is assisting in the recovery of traditional fishing systems for Okanagan Sockeye salmon, which travel up the mighty Columbia River to spawn in the indigenous lands of the Syilx people.

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Messy Church – Food of Belonging

Saturday, October 1, 5 – 8 pm in the Hewett Centre

Messy Church Potluck is back! This Saturday, October 1st, 5-8pm.

photo collage of games, art, yarn, painted hands, and food

Open to the entire UCV community embracing multigenerational fun and connections over food.  Dinner includes a centering worship element, time to check-in with yourself and each other, and leaning into play.  Our youth provide childcare attention to the kids with Cardboard Kingdom creations and games.

For Potluck: The Dish That Brings Back Belonging  

For potluck this month let’s nourish our souls and our bellies! Think of a food or recipe that takes you back to a memory of deep belonging (our September theme). Maybe it was the secret ingredients your grandma put into her apple pie: orange juice and bourbon. Or it might be the tostones your beloved aunt taught you how to make. Whether it was your dad’s way of doing BBQ or the go to dish you made when your kids were little, there’s likely some beloved “belonging food” you’ve not made lately.

So, this weekend, make it! And don’t just stop there: bring it! And don’t just share the dish but share the story of how it anchors you in some precious piece of belonging in your life, how it connects you to belonging and how sharing it with someone else deepened your sense of belonging with them.

UCV Small Groups: Fall Start-up and Refresh

Join, Create, or Register a Small Group

collection of books on a table, titles related to spirituality, justice, and Unitarian Universalism.

Do you want to connect with 6-12 people around a theme, interest, creative endeavor, or spiritual question?

Do you already organize, facilitate or participate in a Small Group, Book Discussion, Circle, or regular small gathering in-person at UCV or through UCV Zoom? Tell us about it! www.ucv.im/small-groups-form

Vancouver Unitarians vision is for a more compassionate world. At UCV we deepen our spiritual and religious lives, grow and enrich our congregation, and advocate for love and justice.

To connect folks, new and old members alike, to deep meaningful community, Kiersten and Derrick need to know what is already going on, what you are looking for, what possibilities you imagine, and what you want to create.

To re-vitalize our directory of small groups, join an existing group, or create a new one, please use this form: www.ucv.im/small-groups-form

Register for Children and Youth Program Year

For all new and returning families, all children must be registered so that we have vital information about parent/guardians, children’s needs, photo permissions or restrictions, and so we can maintain appropriate child/adult ratios in the classroom.

Register your child/ren for the 2022-23 Program Year at www.ucv.im/REfamily

Read on to know what you are registering them for!

Sunday Morning Programs

Everyone starts in the service together and children leave to do their program after the story. Programs run a little longer than service so parents can enjoy coffee hour. All Sunday morning programs are included in the Family Registration at www.ucv.im/REfamily

Pray ground (Sanctuary friendly floor zone)

small child and teen work on a puzzle together. Sitting on a gold carpet in the sunlight with pillows.

The pray ground allows parents to be present in worship with their children, it is up front because that is the best place for kids to see what is going on, be engaged as they are able, and teaches them that they belong here. They are safe in a loving community. It is designed for those who need to be near their parents for any reason.

Our pray ground is the area at the very front of the sanctuary on the right side, with our teen volunteers ready to quietly play during worship or outside if needed. It has carpets and pillows, colouring and stuffies, board books and fidget toys! This zone is designed for those who are too wriggly to sit in a chair for an hour and not ready or willing to join a program. Children who are going to a program can hang out here until they are sung out, and those who are not able or don’t want to leave their parents can stay as long as they want to.

 

Superhero Academy

silhouette of muscled superhero with a cape on a primary color blocked background with sound effect words "wow" and "pow!" Title reads "Superhero Academy coming soon"
written by Meredith Plummer; Director of Lifespan Faith Development at First Unitarian Church of Cincinnati, 2022.

Focus: play-based learning about justice, covenant, and community with an anti-racist lens.

Age: 5-9 (grades K-4)

Time and place: 11:15-12:15 in person at UCV

Are you a fan of the Teen Titans or Black Panther? Or are you more interested in learning about your values through playing games with new friends? Superhero Academy is our children’s group for this year, and you’re all invited!

Family Registration: www.ucv.im/REfamily

Crossing Paths

circular wood table with religious symbols arranged, chalice, menorah, singing bowl, jump rope, binoculars, and pencil crayons

Focus: understanding the religious and spiritual practices of our neighbours and ourselves

Age: 10-12 (grades 5-7)

Time and place: 11:15-12:15 in-person at UCV; also includes fieldtrips once a month to other houses of worship in our community (carpool/transit buddies can be arranged)

Crossing Paths is a core program for UU children. We invite kids beginning to question life-death-and-the-beyond to join with us in exploring many faith traditions and how they relate to Unitarian Universalism. We start with Unitarian Universalism and aim to cover many other traditions practiced in our area, from Buddhism to Islam to Paganism to Coast Salish spirituality. This year’s program is a continuation of last spring’s program, which already spent time on Judaism and Christianity. However, there is no need to have attended last year to attend this year.

Family Registration: www.ucv.im/REfamily

Special Program Registration

Special programs take place at different times outside of Sunday morning. They are often specific to a peer cohort of similar age. They aim to build community within UCV, work on justice in the community at large, and build deep connection to values and identity. Youth may join on their own regardless of parent involvement or membership.  The Our Whole Lives program does have a required parent orientation.

Coming of Age

group of five young teenagers posing together with homemade masks

Focus: UU identity and our community

Age: 12-13

Register here: www.ucv.im/CoA

Time and place: twice a month for two hours each, exact time tbd; in person at UCV

Coming of Age is a core program for UU kids as they become youth. A group of bridging-in youth become a close-knit community as they ask themselves “what is Unitarian Universalism and why does it matter to us?” UCV elders and our facilitators work with participants to learn what they receive from community, what they give back, and how communities practice their values.

Youth Group

meeting room with youth and adults seated in a circle of chairs and couches

Focus: covenant, worship, games, exploration, justice – everything chosen by youth!

Age: 13-18 or currently in high school

Contact Olivia Hall: youth@vancouverunitarians.ca

Time and place: 1-3 pm Sunday afternoons in person at UCV; also sometimes includes sleepovers on Saturday nights, fieldtrips, and discord game times

How to possibly describe youth group? Youth group is fun because teens hanging out is fun! Youth group dives deep because teens dive deep! Youth group is led by teens alongside adult advisors in a safe and supported space to be themselves, be weird, find purpose, and give back. This group is open to all teens connected (however loosely) to UCV. You’re always welcome here.

Bridger’s Program

3-d swirl of rainbow colors

Focus: preparing our oldest youth for the transitions in their lives

Age: 16-19, or gr 11, 12, and first year post high school

Contact Olivia Hall: youth@vancouverunitarians.ca

Time and place: two Mondays a month 7-9 pm in person at UCV; also some sleepovers

Unitarians call the process of moving from youth to young adulthood “Bridging”, they symbol of moving into a new life stage. We create a metaphorical bridge to existing in the world and as a Unitarian with more autonomy and shared responsibility.

Bridger’s Program is a small group for our oldest youth who have been part of UCV or a neighbouring congregation for a while. Two Wednesdays a month, and some sleepovers, we will gather to be with each other in this time of transition. Our leaders help youth to plan post-secondary endeavors (What’s a bursary? What’s a course requirement? How do I fill out my application? Do I even want to keep going to school?), read through Wellspring Youth Sources (What are our UU sources? What spiritual practices keep me grounded? How do I take care of myself and others?), and lead our OWL program (What’s a healthy sexual relationship? How do I make space for my own gender and sexual identity?). And it’s fun.

OWL for Senior High (gr 11-12)

word cloud of sexuality and relationship topics covered in Our Whole Lives sexuality education

Focus: trans and queer affirming sexuality education

Age: gr 11 and 12

Register Here: www.ucv.im/OWLregister

Time and place: one Monday a month 7-9 pm in person at UCV; some Saturday evenings as well

Cost: pay-what-you-can sliding scale, $25-$125; no one will be denied due to lack of funds

Our Whole Lives Sexuality Education is a program used by UUs and other denominations all over the place to support us at all stages of our lives. The grade 11-12 program focusses on sexual health, lifespan sexuality, building healthy sexual relationships, and sexuality and social issues. Our three leaders (two of whom are queer adults themselves) are trained through the program. Our group this year is a majority queer group of amazing teens. Though OWL is offered through UCV, it’s a secular program. Gr 11-12 OWL is a stand-alone part of our Bridger’s Program for older youth, any youth currently age 16 or 17 may join this program.

Ministerial Search Committee Update and Timeline

Dear UCVers,

On behalf of the Ministerial Search Committee (Diane Brown, Michael O” Neill, Carrie Mac and Esme, John Boyle, Jenny Malcolm, Nancy Woodham, Meena Wong) I would like to share with you all that we have met twice as a committee, and going forward from here we will be meeting every week. As I am the designated External Communications person, I will be updating you often and of course answering any questions you may have about this process.  Please feel free to contact me anytime at diane@rubyslippers.ca

Below is our timeline. Come fall, we will need congregational engagement in a number of exciting ways, including a survey and some cottage meetings. Meanwhile, enjoy the summer, and we look forward to this journey together.

In active faith, Diane Brown

 

Timeline for Congregations in Search

 

Phase One  – concluding a ministry

Departure of previous settled minister and selection of an Interim minister

Late Spring (done)

Phase Two – Education and Preparation for Search – First Interim Year

Review congregational by-laws related to ministry

Winter

Transitions Coach Visit (UUA appointed)

February – April

Annual Meeting votes

Approve Search committee budget

Appoint Search Committee

May

Phase Three – search structure – Summer and second interim year

Search Committee retreat with Transitions Coach

May – August

Conduct Congregational Survey

July – September

Conduct Cottage meeting / small group interviews (based on survey results)

September – November

Gather information and create search committee website and record sheet

September – December (absolute due date – December 7)

List of interested ministers received

January 2

Narrowing of interview list

January 2-15

Precandidating weekends

February – March

Final Decision for offers to candidate

April 1

A note on notes and links

​A DuckDuckGo bang command​​ (!?)* searches a website using the search feature provided by that website. In this post, these bang commands are links. That is, they have links embedded in them.

An asterisk may have a link embedded in it​ – as in the third example below.​ If there is no link embedded in an asterisk, the asterisk refers to a footnote.

When in parentheses, bang commands link to results of a search for what they follow. When not, they link to results of a search for what they precede:

!yt Unitarian Church of Vancouver / YouTube

!ucv principles for kids / for grownups: UU principles (!g)

Unitarians care less about belief, more about how to live.*

“he taught a way of life” / Salzberg on Goenka on Buddha (!?)

 

An asterisk with a prepended exclamation point looks like a bang command and links to results of a search on a site that has no custom bang command:

Starhawk (!*)

!* Hewett

 

Entries made in the sermons document before 2022 used this faux bang command to link to posts on this website. They now use an asterisk.*

When you see what looks like a bang command, move your pointer to it so your browser can display its destination before you click on it. Try that with each of these two examples:

Phillip Hewett (!a)

!gi chalice site:uuworld.org

To find out where a link is going to take you, move the pointer over it, pause to read the destination your browser displays – at the bottom left of the screen or wherever – and then click (or not).

 


*a link​ –​ see a note on notes and links

The line above is a suggested footnote for any document that follows the conventions this post follows.

This post is a lit stall post previously published on January 3, 2022. The publication date now displayed is the date of the latest material update.

In the bulleted list below are the three latest posts tagged as lit stall posts.

If you haven’t read it already, please see the post about lit stall posts for more information.

What to Expect During CanUUdle at UCV (May 19 – 23, 2022)

Dear UCV community members, 

The weekend of May 19th-23rd 2022, a very special event will be taking place at UCV. It is the annual conference for Canadian Unitarian Universalist youth, known as CanUUdle. At CanUUdle, youth from across Canada come together en masse to build friendships, worship together, grow in their faith and build their capacity as spiritual and community leaders. The all-volunteer CanUUdle ‘staff’ team, primarily composed of youth, plan and lead the conference, with the support of dedicated adult advisors.  

If you are around UCV this weekend, here is a snapshot of what you might expect to find, and some requests about sharing space:  

Quick facts 

  • The conference runs from Friday, May 20th around 6pm to Monday, May 23rd around 1pm.  
  • There will be conference staff onsite to set up as of 5pm on Thursday, May 19th, and staying to clean up until around 3pm on Monday the 23rd. 
  • We are expecting around 45 participants, including youth ages 14-19 and adult advisors.  

Building use  

  • CanUUdle generally requires full use of the buildings of the host congregation for the duration of the conference. However, we have been provided with the booking schedule for the weekend and are prepared to work around regular long-term rentals and other events that have already booked space.  
  • Sunday morning, the youth will be off site while the regular Sunday morning service is happening. Their belongings will be moved to the balcony of the Sanctuary, and we ask that this area is off-limits for all except the tech people at that time. The youth will return to eat their lunch in the Hall at noon. The young adults of Chorus (the national young adult conference, happening at North Shore the same weekend), will also be onsite at UCV for a special picnic lunch also at noon that day.  

Youth culture  

  • For many youth, Unitarian Universalist youth events are one of the few places in their lives where they feel they can share and celebrate aspects of themselves that they may keep private in other settings. Many develop deep friendships, and conferences such as CanUUdle are a place of exuberant connection. Please do not be alarmed if you witness more-raucous-than-usual playing, singing, or dancing, or open displays of trust and affection such as hand-holding, “cuddle puddles,” or emotional vulnerability.  
  • CanUUdle culture is based on principles of informed consent and respect for oneself, others, and our environment. We will strive to relate to our neighbours according to these principles, and hope that you will return the same. If any conflict arises, please contact the CanUUdle Coordinator (info below).  

For safety and insurance purposes, any adults who are interacting with youth at a CUC event must have completed a Criminal Record Check and have provided a signed Congregational Involvement form. This year, we are also requiring that everyone wears masks indoors and ‘signs in’ for the purpose of contact tracing in case of a Covid outbreak. We ask that other groups using the buildings do not interact with CanUUdle participants. If you need to speak with someone during the conference, ask for me (Carter, the CanUUdle Coordinator) or another adult advisor.  

We are very grateful to UCV for providing us with the space to host this important event, which in many ways is the mainstay of Canadian UU youth ministry. If you have any questions, concerns, or would like to help out with this event in any way, please contact the CanUUdle Coordinator at canuudle@cuc.ca, or the CUC Youth and Young Adult Ministry Staff at youth@cuc.ca. 

In faith, 

Carter Mahoney  

CanUUdle Coordinator

Covenant of Healthy Relations 2021 … at ucv.im/cohr2021

The Covenant of Healthy Relations – along with related procedures – covers three pages of a report approved by the UCV board in 2021. Those three pages are in a PDF file at ucv.im/cohr2021. The text of the covenant is on the first page. You can also read it below.

Covenant of Healthy Relations

This is a covenant to guide how we behave towards each other and to groups and individuals
within the congregation. The objective is to enhance a safe climate that is courteous, friendly,
supportive, respectful of others, open and honest.

Because I believe in the inherent worth and dignity of each person, I will endeavour to:

1. Be compassionate and supportive in my relationships with others, assume their best
intentions and be curious rather than judgmental.
2. Communicate with active listening and consideration. Explain concerns to the person
directly and share differences respectfully. Focus on the current problem – not the person.
3. Balance being open to new ideas with respect for our traditions.
4. Be attentive to our community’s needs, generous with my talents and careful with the
church’s resources.
5. Keep the big picture in mind, be patient with myself and others and stay engaged in the
process of change; participate in the decision-making and respect the decisions that are
made.
6. Discuss conflicts in our church in a way that respects the privacy and dignity of those
involved.
7. Recognize and praise others and myself for the work we do in the church and be
forgiving when we make mistakes.
8. Support, in a constructive way, the work of the minister, staff and congregants.
9. Deepen our connections by getting to know and understand people of all ages and points
of view within the congregation.
10. Nurture my own spiritual needs in this community and support others in their search for
truth and meaning.

Approved on November 27, 2005 by the Annual General Meeting of the Unitarian Church of Vancouver.

Note that you can go to the source of the above – a PDF file at ucv.im/cohr2021 – to check out the related procedures as well.

Covenant of Healthy Relations / site:vancouverunitarians.ca

Enter the title of this post as a search term in Google to get the results you can see here.

At or near the top is a PDF file you can print as a single page. It’s the covenant. And it’s here.

If you missed the service on Sunday, click on the date below:

2021-11-21 Paddling into the future (Rev. Samaya Oakley) / (!*) … see also: video (!*)

The above is a copy-paste from the list at ucv.im/sermons.

Anyhow, the sermon reminded us how important it is to have at hand a copy of the UCV Covenant of Healthy Relations and to look at it often. If you don’t have a copy of the covenant, you can print one now. Or just download the PDF. It’s here.

This UCV covenant is also at ucv.im/healthy.

Pair it with a copy of the recently introduced CUC Responsibility Covenant at ucv.im/responsibility.

 

PSA: check the list at ucv.im/sermons right after any service to see if the prepared text is already in the literature stall digital archive

 


The above is a lit stall post first published on November 24, 2021. The date now displayed with this post is the date of its latest material update.

The post shows up in the results of an internal search of this website for “Covenant of Healthy Relations” – as you can see here.

The featured image is a cropped screenshot of a Google search on November 24, 2021.

In the bulleted list below are the three latest posts tagged as lit stall posts.

If you haven’t read it already, please see the post about lit stall posts for more information.

Hola y Bienvenido – Latin American Heritage Month

Hola y Bienvenido
In Canada, October is Latin American Heritage month and UCV’s IBPOC (Indigenous, Black and People of Colour) caucus (plus Allies) are arranging for each Sunday to include something to celebrate this.
Local events from Latincouver: https://www.latincouver.ca/lahm/
If you self identify as IBPOC including Latin American, we invite you to join our IBPOC caucus bimonthly gatherings. Contact Tamiko Suzuki bipoc@vancouverunitarians.ca to find out more and get on the email list.
If you’d prefer, we can add you to the ucv-ibpoc-plus email group (open to the whole congregation), if you’re interested in being part of future brainstorming, actions and education related to anti-racism.
Nos encantaria eschucharlo.

Some resources

Children’s books – many of these are available from vpl.ca

15 Picture Books That Celebrate Hispanic & Latinx Heritage

Latin American poets – The Women’s Meditative Poetry group who meet Saturdays and Sundays at 9 am Pacific will be reading poems by female poets of Latin American heritage.

10 Classic Latina Poets to Discover and Read

Global Chalice Lighting from International Council of Unitarians and Universalists (see November 2018)
Documentary film: “Latinos Beyond Reel: Challenging a Media Stereotype”
Latin American composers/musicians
Mexican Day of the Dead
How many Latin Americans are there in Canada?
This article from Wikipedia gives the 2016 census figure as 447,325.  This article from the Canadian Hispanic Association suggests the number is between 611,000 and one million.