Defining Enough

Failure to define “enough” means never being satisfied. It makes us vulnerable to slick advertising, and fills our lives with tedium and chaos. It deflects our focus from sources of true happiness, like play, family, relationships, community. Ultimately, it also leads to the desecration of Earth’s living systems. Defining “enough” is a spiritual practice.  

Heart-Centered Leadership (zoom)

The challenges of our time are calling for a new type of leadership and organizing.  Leadership that is caring, collaborative, and authentic are a few ways that it has been described.  At the same time, many of our leaders are struggling with chronic stress, burnout, and compassion fatigue.  The traditional way of working together as an organization is contributing to these challenges where people feel disconnected from each other, overworked, and unfulfilled.  Derick Carter will share his experience in exploring new ways of leading and organizing where we follow our hearts – share leadership, work in community, and feel more fulfilled.

Chinese New Year, Removing the Bad & Old, and Welcoming the New and Good

Chinese New Year, a.k.a. Lunar New Year, is an annual 15-day festival in China and in Chinese communities around the world that begins with the Lunar calendar January 1st new moon and lasts until the following full moon Lunar Calendar January 15th.  In her discussion about the origin of the Chinese New Year, Ms. Fan will talk about various traditions, foods, and celebratory activities that take place in different provinces throughout China and in other parts of the world, and how those activities symbolize the removal of the Bad and Old and the entry of the New and Good.

Fostering – An Act of Service and Support

Victoria Lopez-Garrett of the Grants Pass Oregon Department of Human Services Child Welfare Office will speak about the current high need for foster parents in Josephine County and statewide. Foster parents for kids of all ages and backgrounds are needed, with a special need for homes that would be affirming of a child’s/teen’s sexual orientation and gender identity.  She will also discuss a new program called Certified Respite which is for people who may not be able to be foster parents full time but are willing to have a child/teen for a weekend or a few days here and there as needed.

Care of the Soul

In these days when we experience sickness, depression, obsessions, relationship difficulties and many other challenges that keep us from experiencing joy and peace, where is the hope? In the hospital setting patients bring not only their sickness but emotional and spiritual pain. Retired Chaplain Doug Schmidt will share how spirituality is not only a vital sign but may be an essential resource to the patient and the family, playing a critical role in people’s lives.

Dearly Departed

Together we’ll remember and reflect upon people near, dear and notable whose lives concluded in 2023. We’ll light candles; we’ll sing; we’ll laugh; we may cry; and we will mourn together those we have lost and celebrate their legacies.

Looking Back and Looking Forward

At the turning of the year, many of us take stock of our lives: what we remember from days flown by, and what we want to find around the next corner. This participatory New Year’s Eve service will take us through a collaborative process of sharing our thoughts, dreams, and goals for UUGP. Where have we been, and where do we want to go, as we live the daily joys and challenges of our seven principles?  Onward to 2024!

Holiday Sharing and Music

What better way to enjoy the holiday season than in one another’s company? A bit of music, some poetry, potluck, good company… Hope to see you all there!

Humanist views that could better serve to resolve today’s problems

Historically, all civilizations have evolved their own cultural views for managing community concerns, which were reflected in their religions or accepted philosophies. As these views changed their laws and institutions changed, often only after great struggles, hardships, or even revolutions. Today, we have culturally accepted views that may be due for changing which might help us transition to better serving our human (and natural) communities.