When asked by the Jentel Artist Residency program to describe her book in under 25 words, Mary Beth wrote: “Long-married, suburban school counselor self-ejects from pool of boredom and shoots to the Tetons where she wrestles with bears, blizzards, and burly guys.”

Long-time UUFL member Mary Beth Baptiste will tell us about her memoir, which will be published in May by TwoDot/Globe Pequot Press. “Altitude Adjustment: A Quest for Love, Home, and Meaning in the Tetons” is the story of a classic heroine’s journey, but one taken in midlife. Aware that her youth was slipping away as she languished in a repressive marriage in east coast suburbia, Mary Beth left behind her whole known world to follow her lifelong dream of living and working in the Rocky Mountains. In her job as a biologist at Grand Teton National Park, unexpected lessons from nature and wildlife helped her create a more free and open life. Please join us this Sunday for a sure to be enriching and reflective morning for us all.

Join us as we resurrect the metaphors of Easter, both Christian and pagan as well as Earth day (4/22). Change for Change is for WildEarth Guardians.  This will be an intergenerational service.   Please join us for a simple finger food brunch after the morning sermon. Please bring something to share with others, deviled eggs, rolls, muffins, cut up fruit, anything we can nibble while standing! Also if your children would like to participate in an egg hunt, please bring SIX colored/ decorated eggs per child, and a basket, as we will have a egg hunt after the brunch for the little ones. Kite flyers welcome too.

 

Franz-Peter Griesmaier, Philosopher (University of Wyoming) With this month’s theme being Freedom, this Sunday we’ll host a provocative dialogue with a returning guest about what is arguably the most central question regarding freedom: Do we have free will? Philosophers have struggled with this issue for centuries. If the world is fully determined by physical laws such that all events have preceding causes, then is free will just an illusion? Where would it come from? What would it mean for our UU Principles if there is no such thing as free will? How would anyone be morally accountable or worthy of praise in a deterministic universe? What are the bounds of our freedom to think, believe, and act? How can we honor both our scientific heritage of an explainable world and our belief in a free and responsible search for truth and meaning? Join us in exploring these vital questions about what it means to be human.

Sarah Oglesby-Dunegan is joined by Musician and seminarian Christopher Watkins this weekend as we explore Freedom. We will explore the roots of Passover (4/14-22) and its importance for the Jewish tradition as well as its message about freedom for all people from slavery to continuing civil rights struggles today.

People very often characterize their experience in relation to poetry by saying “I don’t understand it.” Why, then, is so much of the sacred literature in so many spiritual traditions composed in poetry? (E.g., in the Judeo-Christian tradition, the Book of Job, the Psalms, and so on.) One step toward an answer might be to regard poetry as language engaged not primarily in its ordinary functions (description, explanation, narration, and so on), but instead as language engaged primarily in redemption.

An intergenerational, interactive service on prayers—singing, dancing, drawing, and laughing our prayers.

One afternoon while sitting on my patio in northern California I had an experience that totally changed my life. I bonded with a crimson and scarlet rose. Yes, I did do that. My first reaction was “Wow, wait until I tell…” Then I stopped. Who would I tell such a preposterous thing?

That’s how my adventure at the age of sixty began. Now, turning 79 two days after I meet with you, I am still amazed at the immensity and glory of this universe. We are like balloons being filled with knowingness rather than air…teachers and students walking the circle of life…growing steadily in love, compassion, wisdom, and understanding. Not according to someone else’s idea but as the Desiderata states: to be at peace with God whatever we conceive Him to be. To keep peace with our own souls. When we have learned to love until our “balloons” can hold no more in this life, like Pooh Bear I believe we will rise to the Power that put each of us here to Walk in Spirit. See page 4 for Nancy’s bio.

Change for Change is today. We will be donating to Yen Industries/Hildy Hats. This is the organization begun by Rosemary Bratton which makes hats. She is now working with women at the Lusk prison.

How do we engage issues of justice making and relationship building that redeem our world and ourselves? How can we make a difference in a world so full of oppression and suffering?

Leslie has also served for four years as prison chaplain at the women’s prison at Lusk, Wyoming. Of her service with us this Sunday she says “One of the reasons fundamental Christianity is so entrenched within the American prison system is its promise of redemption. But for the other 40% who do not self-identify as Christian, what does the path to forgiveness and spiritual health look like? One of the most important responses to the spiritual needs of incarcerated individuals is found in the Principles and Purposes of the Unitarian Universalist tradition. But to find UUs as religious volunteers at a prison is very rare. Despite the work of the CLF’s prison ministry, a handful of dedicated clergy and lay volunteers, the vast majority of inmates never learn about the possibility of redemption outside of the Christian doctrine. As liberal religionists dedicated to social justice, taking the message of a free faith behind the prison walls is a responsibility we should not only welcome, but should be at the forefront of our awareness and activism.”

*Child dedication ceremony on this day; please contact Sarah if you would like your child to be included. (Children new to your family and children new to the Fellowship family are welcome.)