Category: Recent News

The monthly e-newsletter selects about 5 news posts with this category. Priorities are news relevant to a wide number of people and especially of interest to visitors or new folk.

Oak Street Parking Lot Entrance Closed

CLOSURE OF OAK STREET PARKING LOT ENTRANCE. For safety reasons, the Oak Street entrance to the UCV Parking lot will be closed indefinitely, starting August 15th. The Fremlin Street entrance will be the main access to the parking lot.

Changes to Video Management of Older Services on YouTube!

We are so fortunate to be able to provide live-streamed services to enjoy from the comfort of our own homes! I for one have also been enjoying the ability to tune in Sunday night instead, freeing me up to spend quality time with my husband Sunday mornings when our schedules align.

There are many perks to keeping our content online! However, in recent days, a small impromptu group of communications, technology, and worship folks had a sensitive conversation about protecting anonymity in worship, the dangers of having youth images up online, and even new copyright issues we’ve never had to consider before!! We know we are not the only church going through this right now, but we did have to make some changes to the way we keep content online, in line with our values.

The following are the decisions that have been made at this time (and very likely to change and get better and better as new ideas roll in)

  1. We now immediately remove greetings after the live service.

    Greetings are only available to be seen live. We hope this will increase willingness to participate for those who do not want their image to live on YouTube but are ok with the single broadcast.

  2. We keep the complete service (story, music, meditation, homily) online for one week only.

    We want people to be able to access the service throughout the week, but with copyright concerns and privacy, it is best for us to limit this. Yes! We keep a private archived copy of the whole service for our historical record-keeping!

  3. Services with a great deal of youth participation will not be kept online following the live streaming

  4. After one week we pull the service down from YouTube and replace it with a video of just the homily.

    This lives on YouTube for as long as we want. So the homily can always be watched again, accessed by new members, and shared widely.

We have a backlog of services to edit into just the homily so if you visit our YouTube and wonder why there are only a few videos so far, trust us! We’re working on it and they should be up soon!

If you have questions thoughts or feedback about this, please contact Marie and your messages will be shared with all those working on this important issue.

Reflections on Plastic-Free July from UCV Zero Waste

You may have heard of the initiative “Plastic-Free July.” It is a global movement and a challenge to reduce plastic waste. Local zero-waste shops like Nada Grocery have been at the forefront of promoting this important work in our community. While it is nice to have a special month to “zero” in on the consumption of single-use plastics, we also know the work is year-long.

This year poses a particularly difficult challenge because the safety measures used to protect us from COVID often come with more packaging, less opportunity to use our many-use items.

Vancouver Unitarian’s Zero Waste team members reflect on how they are navigating their commitment to being plastic-free and zero waste in a pandemic. We asked: Has the pandemic shifted your habits with plastic? Why or Why not? and What are some examples of steps you’re taking to be both safe AND plastic-free? 

 

“My habits with plastic have changed slightly because I strive to live a sustainable and plastic-free life as possible I have endeavored to abstain from activities that require me to introduce more plastic into my life. At the grocery stores, I refuse to use plastic bags and even if I have to carry out my items and later put them in my own bag I won’t use plastic bags. The one thing I had to do which hurt more than I thought was to use disposable cups when having coffee outside as we cannot use our own mugs.
In addition, I have not ordered take out except once and I asked them to have as little packaging as possible. Yes, it came in a container but I asked for compostable.

In order to be safe and plastic-free I wash my hands and avoid touching my face rather than using disposable gloves which research has proven is a false positive anyway. I made my own mask and use that.”

– Vivian Davidson


“Yes.  Instead of going to NADA (way too scary) we’ve been ordering from SPUD.  There’s much more packaging, including non-reusable large cardboard boxes.  Last week one such box contained only 1 loaf of half frozen bread.  Now that NADA has an on-line system, I am back to using it instead of SPUD.  Throughout the pandemic I’ve been getting my produce at farmers markets which are generally good about reducing packaging but even they are using more plastic bags.
I used to be much more pure about getting my bread in paper bags, not plastic but was so desperate at various points in the pandemic to find gluten-free vegan bread that I lowered my standards.  Hoping now that the g/f bakeries are opening up I can insist on bread in paper, or at least bread that hasn’t been frozen in plastic.
Shopping at farmers market feels safe since it’s outside.  Online orders from NADA is now an option.  Stores like the East End Food Coop have taken good steps for safety but sadly their bulk area has been removed.
PS Also very sorry that London Drugs is not doing plastic recycling anymore.”
– Mairy Beam

“The pandemic has shifted my ability to stay committed to plastic-free to the degree I had been committed before. I think moments like this really test us in ways we don’t anticipate and it’s interesting to notice where the motivation to use packaging “for safety” feels different than using it “for convenience.” I am trying to focus on the fact that things won’t always be like this.

I am visiting places that are supportive of zero-waste even in the face of pandemic. The Safeway at King Ed has been allowing reusable shopping bags if you pack your own, and the JJ Bean on 16th and Cambie (and assuming all over too) is now allowing clean travel mugs. I am ordering take out from time to time but we got to places that use compostables like Beetbox Vegetarian. I love to feel our community pull together and remain committed to our values by making our environmental practices as safe to continue as possible.”

-Marie Witt

Pilgrimage to Burns Bog


So you’d like to know more about the Pilgrimage to Burns Bog? Many Unitarians have heard of this annual meditative walk, usually in conjunction with the Earth Day Service put on by the Environment Team.

For others, Burns Bog is a big mystery. What is it? Why is it so important? Why would Unitarians help organize a pilgrimage to a “swamp”?

Karl Perrin a long-time member of the Environment Team, answers those questions.

(more…)

UCV community links and a virtual literature stall

In this time of COVID-19 we need to use UCV community links even more than usual. The weekly Order of Service now includes a list of links like the one here.

https://ucv.im/live … Livestream link for Sunday church services (active at 10:55am every Sunday)
https://ucv.im/oos … An online version of the current Order of Service
https://ucv.im/coffee … Virtual coffee hour – every Sunday immediately following the service
https://ucv.im/give … How to donate from anywhere
https://ucv.im/events … The most frequently updated list of UCV events
https://ucv.im/sermons … A text-based archive of sermons – a virtual literature stall
https://ucv.im/core … An archive of core documents: board minutes, annual reports, …

This post fronts a shameless plug for the item next to last in the list: a link to a virtual literature stall (lit stall).

When you watch the livestreamed service at ucv.im/live on Sundays you are asked to have the online version of the current Order of Service at ucv.im/oos on view in another tab on your browser so you can follow along.

After the service, you can then go to that tab, scroll down to the list of community links, and click on the link to the virtual lit stall at ucv.im/sermons to view or download a copy of the prepared text for the sermon if the speaker has provided one.

 


The above is a lit stall post at ucv.im/2020-06-09ga first published on June 9, 2020. The featured image shows the cover of the Order of Service for the preceding Sunday.

You also can find this post at vancouverunitarians.ca/links. Please note that the date displayed with the post is the date of its latest 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.

Family Zoom – join any Sunday at noon

from Mary Bennett

Although many children’s programs (and Kiersten!) are on vacation right now, there’s now a team to make sure there’s a kid-focused space during coffee hour every Sunday as a breakout room during virtual coffee hour. Myself, Sandy, Catherine and Meaghan take turns facilitating, often with a few conversation starters or an activity, but as often just a willingness to meet our kids where they are. Kids often do a show-and-tell with some artwork or tell us about something they did that week. And we love hearing that.

On the first Sunday of each month, we especially like to provide a chance for Mystery Pals to check in with each other.  We hope some pairs might want to use the chance to have a breakout room of their own to check-in, whether for 5 minutes or more.  They can do a quick check-in and then return to the main session if they want.
The Family breakout room will still be there for any of you, whether or not you’ve been a mystery pal.

In other news, if you missed Sunday’s service, do check it out with link from main page vancouverunitarians.ca  Until Saturday only it includes the kids’ play and Rose reading the Connections are made slowly poem. The procedures UCV is now using is that the greetings are edited out immediately after the service, and then after a week (6 days actually) everything except for the sermon is removed. Contact Marie, chair of communications team, at communications@vancouverunitarians.ca if you have any questions about the procedures.

The next mystery pal program will start up as usual in spring 2021 (we assume), but in the meantime, I’d really encourage you to find some way to connect with past pals if possible. If you need contact information, you can contact the administator or office assistant Monday to Friday. If it’s urgent, ask me.  info@vancouverunitarians.ca 604-261-7204. If you want a directory of members and friends either hardcopy, pdf or Breeze database access, Aurora or Marcus can help with that.

Labyrinth picnic anyone?

Some of the kids have enjoyed our garden path labyrinth at 49th and Oak. I enjoyed visiting it briefly when I was there this past Sunday (for the first time in four and a half months).  Once this heat wave passes, I’d love to meet with a few of you to walk, play (and weed!) the labyrinth. Drop me a note if that would be of interest. We’d socially distance of course, but there’s a lot of space there to spread out.

Some links you might find of interest:

Last week’s service: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G4J_jD52taU&feature=youtu.be
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Vancouver.Unitarian.CYRE/
Covid-19 Plan for UCV site: https://vancouverunitarians.ca/ucv-covid-19-go-slowly-forward-plan/

Note the Main hall can be used for up to 20 people by arrangement with the office in advance. Details on procedures can be found at that link.

I will likely send regular notes about what’s coming up for Family Zoom (and anything else I might know and think you’d want to know too).  You’re not obligated to read everything (LOL!) and if you don’t want to receive at all, just let me know.

If you did not receive this message via email and want to receive them in future, please just let me know.

connect@vancouverunitarians.ca

CUC Regional & National Gatherings – Save these November dates!

This is one of eleven articles from the August CUC eNews.
Recommended:  subscribe to the monthly CUC eNews here: CUC eNews LINK.

Save the Dates for Regional and National Virtual Gathering!

The CUC, in conjunction with our various regions, is planning an online regional and national fall gathering the weekend of November 13- 15 and we want you to attend!

On Friday, November 13, regions will gather together for Zoom events and conversations specific to each region.

On Saturday, November 14, we will come together nationally for workshops and programming focusing on topics identified as priorities in our recent congregational survey. Following the workshops, the CUC Board will host a conversation. Multigenerational events are also being planned.

And on SundayNovember 15, we will have a national Sunday Service with participation from congregations across the country. Our theme will be Sailing Ahead and we will imagine together the promise and the possibility of Unitarian Universalism in Canada.

More information about the weekend will be available soon; a youth con is being considered for a different date. Please watch for details in future editions of the eNews, on our Facebook page, and from your local congregation.

 

Featured CUC Events

Sunday Summer Services Series – 1 PM Pacific
August 2 –  Hosted by Young Adults,
Theme: To Get to the Other Side
(Organized by Casey Stainsby – See pic)

August 9 – Hosted by Unitarian Fellowship of Fredericton,
Theme: Connections Between the UFF and the One-time Harvey Universalist Church

For Sunday Summer Services preregistration on Zoom is required at https://bit.ly/UUSummer. 
Once you have registered, you will receive an email from Zoom with the link, call-in information and meeting ID. For those who don’t have access to computer and email, and are dialing in by phone, please have someone register for you, with their email, and then convey the phone-in information to you, including meeting ID and password.

More information is available on the CUC Events Calendar.

Happy Pride 2020

Greetings: Happy Pride! What does Pride Mean to You? 

Vancouver Pride is first weekend in August so during the July 26 worship service we want to include a diverse selection of UCV members and friends wishing us all “Happy Pride”. A 15-second (maximum) video saying “Happy Pride” and or what “pride” means to you or what you are doing this year to celebrate Pride. 

We hope you’ll have some flags, posters, buttons and maybe even feather boas in your video!

You can record and send your video any time up until Saturday noon July 25, but the earlier the better. We’d like to include as many as possible and also have a handle on the length of time required.

Here’s a link to make it easy for you to record or upload your video:

Sunday Greetings

 

 

Vegan Cooking with umami

Twelve people participated in our (first?) vegan cooking zoom call.
There seems to be enthusiasm so we may pursue this further, possibly with a monthly “ethical eating” zoom call, sharing our questions, answers, recipes. If you’d be interested, let me know at connect@vancouverunitarians.ca.

Possible topics

  • vegan desserts
  • environmental effects of the animal industry
  • nutrition issues
If you want to review the recording (technology glitches and all!) just click here:
Access Password: ucvucv1!

Resources

Denise has sent me a lot of information that I’ve pasted below.

If you’re on Facebook, do join us at the Unitarian Ethical Eating Group, https://www.facebook.com/groups/unitarianethicaleating/

Goals of the Ethical Eating Group:

  • build education and awareness around the importance of food choices
  • respect individual choices and diversity – provide support and information for people wanting to shift their eating choices
  • encourage congregational engagement on ethical eating and action.
  • provide information on Unitarian and Unitarian Universalist initiatives related to ethical eating and encourage people to engage as individuals or as congregations

approved by the Environment Committee of the Unitarian Church of Vancouver on October 13, 2013.

More resources from Denise

And here are some links and information from Denise sent after the session for sharing:

Vegan Cheese

Chao Cheese is quite decent, and fairly mild.
Then there is the local Daiya, which has been around a long time. I find the mozzarella or pepperjack shreds work well in pizza, pasta, enchiladas and a ton of other applications. It’s cheaper than some other cheeses. Daiya cream cheese works well too in recipes.
Someone was saying they are limiting saturated fat consumption. Me too. I only use such commercial cheeses for special occasions.
One of my favorite cheese brands is Nuts for Cheese especially the “Red Rind” and “Super Blue”. These are strong flavours. Can sometimes be found at a steep discount at Sunrise Market (Gore @ Powell).

I like Miyoko’s Kitchen Cheeses available from Vegan Supply 250 East Pender

https://vegansupply.ca/  and in natural food stores.

And this website links to her almond ricotta recipe.

Her book Artisan Vegan Cheese has recipes for yogurt, rejuvelac, and such ingredients for making cheese, as well as the actual cheese recipes.
Here is a favorite tempeh recipe of mine. I use olive – not coconut – oil; and I use maple syrup, not molasses.

Tempea brand local tempeh

Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency in the world among meat eaters and vegetarians alike, especially among young women.
Including vitamin C-containing food along with your iron-rich foods can greatly enhance absorption of the iron.
Pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds (see photos of their ‘butters’) are very good sources. (I use Crofters jam (has Vit C) over my toast spread with pumpkinseed butter).
Legumes (lentils, peas, beans) and grains (quinoa, wheat, teff, oats, etc., so breads and pastas) as well as dark leafy greens contain a fair bit of iron as well.
Many veg meats are sky-high in iron. Check out Gardein products, for example. (Their “Fishless Filets” also contain long chain Omega 3 fatty acids).

But if one is already iron-deficient, taking a round of supplements will likely bring iron levels up faster.

Here’s a list of umami condiments and ingredients.

  • Toasted Sesame Oil
  • Ketchup
  • Mustard
  • Vinegars
  • Soy Sauce & Tamari & Shouyu
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Vegan Worcestershire Sauce
  • Hoisin Sauce
  • Chili Sauce & Gochujang
  • Black Bean Sauce
  • Miso & Doenjang
  • Sauerkraut & Kimchi
  • Nutritional Yeast
  • Rejuvalac & Shio Koji
  • Certain Spices, e.g. black salt (kala namak);
  • smoked salt;
  • turmeric

Basic umami food ingredients

  • Tomatoes
  • Mushrooms
  • Seaweed (Kombu)
  • Olives
  • Beans
  • Soy Protein
  • Cheeses
  • Concentrated Foods (i.e. dried, reduced, dehydrated, etc.):
  • Dried Mushrooms and Tomatoes
  • Tomato Paste
  • Bouillon Concentrate
  • Yeast Extracts
  • Balsamic Reduction
  • Dried Fruit
  • Roasted, Toasted, Browned Foods:
  • Toasted Nuts and Seeds
  • Roasted Vegetables
  • Seared Tofu & Tempeh & Seitan

Fermented Foods

  • Sugar-Based: Alcoholic Beverages, Kombucha
  • Veg-Based:  Sauerkraut, Kimchi, Pickles
  • Mylk-Based: Cheeses, Yogurt, Kefir, Buttermylk
  • Grain & Tuber-Based: Breads & Porridges; barley malt; Rejuvelac
  • Bean-/Seed-/Nut-Based: Miso, Soy Sauce; Natto; fermented tofu (fulu, or chou doufu); Dosa (fermented lentil & rice crepe)

Here are some websites on umami

https://tabesuki.com/the-ultimate-guide-to-umami/

https://sweetvegtable.com/vegan-umami/

https://www.delishknowledge.com/plant-based-umami/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5KwRV7Se1w

https://www.seriouseats.com/roundups/umami-ingredients

Become a Familiar Face to Reverend Lara!

Imagine you are meeting up to 350 people in the coming weeks, sounds fairly daunting doesn’t it? The current Covid-19 situation is making it even more so.

Rev. Lara Cowtan is arriving in a few short weeks, and she will need to be able to put faces to names. This is where we need your help! You can help make her welcome, and connections a bit more easy by updating your profile in our directory with a photo!

Sign-Up For A Breeze Account

If you have never logged into your Breeze profile before, you will need to

  1. Click here
  2. Click on “create account”
  3. Follow the prompts and check your email for setting your user name and password

Upload your Profile Pic to Breeze in 4 easy steps

  1. Navigate to your profile or sign in here
  2. Click on the cartoon image box at the top
  3. Click “Upload Image” and select the image (of yourself) you want to upload.
  4. Crop the image to the appropriate size and save the change

For help (including graphics) click here or contact Marcus who will be happy to help!

Greetings From Rev. Lara Cowtan!

Greetings Unitarian Church of Vancouver!

I am Reverend Lara Cowtan, and I am delighted and honored to have been hired as your interim minister, to serve you for a two-year transition period. I just wanted to reach out and say hello to you from Winnipeg, where I am currently serving as a hospital chaplain. This has been a year of transition for me as well, as I’ve moved back to Canada after living in Europe since 2005.

Soon I will set out West, over the prairies and across the mountains to join you in Vancouver. I am excited and looking forward to meeting all of you, to being a part of your thriving and welcoming community, and to working with you as we learn and grow together.
These are challenging and complicated times, and it helps to have something to look forward to.

This transitional ministry time is an exciting opportunity for the congregation to engage in reflecting on where you have come from, all you’ve accomplished, then envisioning and reaching towards the future. It is a time of infinite possibilities, and I can’t wait to explore them with you.

I’ll arrive at the end of July and begin in August with meetings to get to know you and prepare for the start of our first year together.
Wishing you all a safe and healthy summer.
Blessings.

Warmly,
Rev. Lara