Will You Be on the Bus?

To Change EverythingIt’s time to decide. Will Unitarian Universalists help make this the largest march in history to demand action on climate change? Will you join the march?

 

We’ve set a goal of 20 people from First Unitarian Church attending the Sept. 21 People’s Climate March. Today, we learned more about the transportation and the march from Stephanie Herron of the Sierra Club Delaware Chapter, who met with a small number of interested members after church.

On Sunday, September 21:

  • The Newark bus will leave the Trabant Student Center off Main Street (pick-up in the lane between Trabant Center and parking garage) right at 8am on Sunday, 9/21.
  • The Wilmington bus will leave the People’s Settlement Association at 408 E 8th St, Wilmington, DE right at 8:30am on Sunday, 9/21.
  • The North Wilmington bus will leave the Brandywine Town Center right at 8:30am.  Meet in the area near the Christmas Tree Shop, 5450 Brandywine Pkwy, Wilmington, DE (park towards the back of the lot to avoid blocking the store parking).
  • The march will form near Columbus Circle, at the southwest corner of Central Park, and proceed downtown to 11th Avenue at 34th Street. It will end at about 4:00, and buses will leave from a pre-designated point shortly thereafter to return to Delaware.
  • There will be some food available on the bus, but marchers are urged to bring their own food and water.

We know that there’s much greater interest than was shown after church today—and great urgency in addressing this impending crisis. (Most scientists think it’s not just “impending”—but actually upon us!) Reserve your seat(s) on the bus as soon as possible at this site.

As more details become available, we’ll post them on the Connector.

 

Climate March Kickoff Meeting

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Information meeting Sunday after church in the sanctuary

Elizabeth Siftar of the Green Sanctuary Team reports that there will be a People’s Climate March Information Meeting – Sunday, August 31 at 11:45. 

We will be meeting in the Sanctuary at 11:45 to answer questions and to sign-up members and others wanting to reserve a seat on the bus. There will also information on bus departure and return time, start location on the march, information for parents. All are welcome.

UUSC Urges Attendance at Climate March

Today, an email from Rev. Bill Schulz, president of the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, arrived, urging participation in the Sept. 21 Peoples Climate March. Here’s what Schulz had to say:

Join us next month in taking action to support climate justice! Attend the People’s Climate March in New York City on September 21 or find, support, or organize a related event in your area.

Climate change poses a threat to human rights in the United States and around the world. From women’s empowerment to disaster recovery, from access to clean water to food sustainability, efforts to improve human rights are already being strained by climate change.

Many communities whose rights are already at risk — including low-income people, women, indigenous people, and people of color — often experience the greatest negative impacts of global warming and related processes like fossil fuel extraction.

As a human rights organization committed to working with marginalized people around the world, UUSC is deeply engaged in supporting communities responding to these global threats.

We invite you to join us in whatever way you can. In September, timed to coincide with the United Nations Climate Summit, there will be a mass mobilization in support of climate justice. Here’s how you can participate:

  • If you are in the New York area (or can reach New York via sustainable modes of transportation):Participate in the People’s Climate March on September 21. This may be the largest climate march in history, with an estimated one million people gathering in New York City. There are many events scheduled for the weekend, including a Saturday night interfaith worship service hosted by young adults and open to all, a massive interfaith service on Sunday morning before the march, and a gathering directly following the march at Community Church of New York, UU. RSVP for the march now!
  • If you are not traveling to New York: Organize a local solidarity action or contribute to one that is already being planned. Be part of a demonstration, an educational activity, a letter-writing event, or any other gathering calling for effective global action to advance climate justice. In finding or planning local activities, consider how you can support communities in your own area that are most affected by the climate crisis and are leading efforts to respond. Learn more about participating in local action.

Sincerely,

Bill Schulz
President and CEO
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee

PS. The People’s Climate March is also the kickoff of Commit2Respond! A movement of supporters taking action for climate justice, Commit2Respond is a collaboration of the Unitarian Universalist Association, UUSC, the Unitarian Universalist College of Social Justice, the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association, Unitarian Universalist Ministry for Earth, and others.

Peace, Love, and Wilmington

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These UUs marched for peace and love in Wilmington on July 10. Will you join us on Sept. 27 as we demonstrate our commitment to a culture of nonviolence in our city? First Unitarian Church is a primary organizer of this groundbreaking event.

Sept. 27: March for a Culture of Nonviolence

Save the date to demonstrate your commitment to peace in our city. 

Pacem in Terris, Wilmington Peacekeepers, and the First Unitarian Church Social Justice Forum are the lead organizers of a community march as part of national Campaign Nonviolence Week (Sept. 21–27). Plans are rapidly developing for a significant response by a coalition of faith and community groups to violence in our community—an event that will begin to build a culture of peace in Wilmington by involving the broader community in opposing all violence.

Whether you live in the city or the suburbs, no matter your circumstances or your address, it’s time to show unconditional love for Delaware families who daily face the risk of violence in their neighborhoods. We’re all one community. Every Delawarean needs to bear witness to the toll taken and the lives shattered—to rise up against this senseless violence whether or not you are personally affected by it.

The march will begin at 3:00 pm and end at 4:30. Watch the Connector for the starting and ending points of the march and information on how to participate. If you have suggestions or wish to help, leave a comment on the Connector or email Jeff Lott. The church and its organizing partners—Pacem in Terris and Wilmington Peacekeepers— are seeking additional sponsors and participating organizations, especially churches. The next planning meeting will be Tuesday, August 19, at 2:00 pm at First Unitarian Church.

Want to make a difference in our city? Showing up is the first step.
 

 

 

 

 

 

Dialogue to Action: Ending the New Jim Crow

New Jim Crow bookStarting tomorrow afternoon, our friends at the YWCA will kick off a Dialogue to Action Study Group to read about, discuss, and take action on the issue of mass incarceration of people of color. The group will her explosive book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, author and civil liberties lawyer Michelle Alexander argues that reforms and timid civil rights activism must give way to a sweeping transformation based on a recognition of the massive injustice against black America and on compassion for the stigmatized young African Americans.

You can join the group tomorrow from 12:00 noon until 2:00 pm at the YWCA’s Home Life Management Center at 709 North Madison St. in Wilmington. It will meet every Friday at this time until September 26. For more information, contact Faye Bonneau at fbonneau@ywcade.org or visit YWCA website. Faye has told us that it’s OK to miss a session or two—including the first one.

First Unitarian Church has co-sponsored similar study groups in the past along with Mother Africa A.M.E. Church. Let’s support the YWCA in its work to further this effort in Delaware.

Are You Ready for the Peoples Climate March?

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It’s going to be the largest climate march in history—and you can help make history by going to New York on Sunday, Sept. 21. First Unitarian Church will have a significant contingent in New York City that day. We’ll travel by bus with Sierra Club Delaware (the transportation organizer) and join tens (hundreds?) of thousands of ordinary people demanding that world leaders do something to reverse the impending climate disaster.

To reserve a seat on the Sierra Club bus, go to this site.

Click to learn more about online about the Peoples Climate March. It’s intended to be family friendly and positive. And it’s timed to coincide with a meeting of world leaders at the United Nations to discuss urgent climate issues. Here are some facts about the PCM and what it’s going to be like.

What is the People’s Climate March?

  • The People’s Climate March is a major mobilization in New York City this September 21 to demand bold political action to address the climate crisis.
  • It is going to be the largest climate march in history! The People’s Climate March is literally that—the people coming together to show that we demand a future that is within our reach. A future with an economy that works for people and the planet. A world safe from the ravages of climate change.
  • This is a moment about us—the people who are standing up in our communities to organize, build power, and to shift power to a just, safe, and peaceful world.

What is happening on September 21st?

On September 21st, thousands of people will be coming to NYC to participate in a march led by young people in order to show that we care about our climate, our communities, and our futures! World leaders will be coming to New York City for a UN summit to discuss climate change, and we are bringing thousands of people together to show that our communities are resilient, powerful, and united.

  • We are coming together to show that our communities care about climate action
  • To show that we won’t wait for the UN to take action, we are already doing it
  • To show the UN that people are ready for action on climate change
  • That communities in NYC, who have been on the frontlines of climate catastrophe such as Hurricane Sandy, are hitting the streets
  • To show that amongst the many things we are doing in our communities, with our neighbors, with our families and with our friends, we are also ready to march!

 Why should you get involved?

  • Because you are ready to see a change in the trajectory of this planet.
  • It is time to do something big! And something new! It is time to show that we are coming together in NYC, and are being joined by people globally, for the largest climate march.
  • If world leaders walk away from that summit without seeing a strong, public demand for action, they’ll never take the steps necessary to address this crisis.
  • Personal stories—work on keeping your message short and sweet!

Look for more on the Connector in the coming weeks. This is important. Can First Unitarian fill an entire bus? Let’s set a goal of 20 members at the march—and exceed it!

What are your questions? Leave a comment on this post and someone will try to answer you.

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ILYA Team Joins Mural Project

Betty Weir, [?], Lynn Ingersoll, Barbara Crowell, and supervising artist John Donato

Betty Wier, coordinator Maggie Boone, Lynn Ingersoll, Barbara Crowell, and supervising artist John Donato

Many children in foster care have experienced things that aren’t so nice—and don’t know how to express their feelings about them. But thanks to the recent Family Court Mural Project, some of these children got a chance to explore those feelings in a safe and creative environment. These are the teens that Independent Living for Young Adults (ILYA) at First Unitarian Church supports.

Lynn Ingersoll and a group of First U volunteers—including Family Court Judge Barbara Crowell—stopped by the Delaware College of Art and Design the other day to help out. Lynn sent the following report and gallery of photos.

Colorful as they are, these photos in no way capture the spirit of the process I was privileged to take part in yesterday. Like the mural itself, the atmosphere in the DCAD gallery was a high octane mix of creativity and emotion, seasoned with the laughter and playfulness of youth. The kids and John Donato, the talented and charismatic art coach and project leader, have captured so much words could never describe. They have displayed a gamut of experience — from pain to hope and determination — on a succession of panels that, for years to come, will comfort and ground foster children as they enter the courtroom, feeling lonely, helpless and afraid. The wonderful vision for the mural came from our own Judge Barbara! How wonderful to share an hour with her as it takes color and form. Notice Betty Wier’s paintbrush! She’s adding color to a rainbow over a church. John sketched that in at Barbara’s request yesterday, allowing us to paint our own rainbow — symbolizing First Unitarian and our ILYA project. When the mural is finished today, the letters ILYA will appear in the rainbow. I am still smiling.

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