UU Fellowship of Ligonier Valley

Welcome to the UU Fellowship of Ligonier Valley
Unitarian Universalist History
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Varieties of UU Religious Belief
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Sunday Service

A welcoming home for liberal religious thought and action in eastern Westmoreland County
In September 2007 we received the status of "Welcoming Congregation"
The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Ligonier Valley is a member congregation of the Unitarian Universalist Association. Ours is a denomination whose principles are based on tolerance and freedom of religious belief with an emphasis on the integration of faith and reason. Our roots date back at least 400 years to Poland and Transylvania. We have had many notable thinkers and activists such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Clara Barton and Albert Schweitzer as members. While our community's heritage is Judeo-Christian we find value in opening ourselves to a variety of religious experiences.
In September 2007 we received the status of "Welcoming Congregation" from the Unitarian Universalist Association. This was the culmination of a two year long program including workshops, discussions and outreach programs designed to support the rights and worth of bisexual, gay and lesbian people and to make them and all other individuals to feel safe, secure and welcome in our congregation.

“Love thy neighbor. No exceptions.” – Jesus
Schedule of Events 
September & October Services........
Our Sunday service starts at 10:30. It is followed by a break for snacks and coffee. After the break many of our members and friends stay for a half hour's lively discussion of the morning's topic.
Sept.      4    Defying Hate  In 1939 as the Nazis were beginning their horrific reign of terror in Europe, 2 unassuming Unitarians embarked on a dangerous mission to save Jews, dissidents, and other refugees. Their story, “Defying the Nazis: Sharp’s War,” a documentary film created by Ken Burns and the Sharp’s grandson, Artemis Joukowsky, will be presented on PBS on September 20th. Given the current fearful atmosphere that exists in our world, today we’ll talk about how we may go about defying hatred and fear. (And think about getting together to watch the movie!) Drumming precedes the service from 10:00 to 10:20.

Sept.    11    Where's the Magic? Due to humankind’s much greater understanding of the natural world, most of us no longer fear the gods. In light of suggestions that there is no God, and with “spiritual, but not religious” fast becoming one of the largest demographic groups in the United States today, does that mean religion’s days are numbered? Some thoughts by our president, Jim Galik.  
Sept.    18    Opening Up to the Pain of the World  Our natural tendency is to move away from, or cover up our pain. Our own pain teaches us about ourselves. The pain of others teaches us about ourselves and the world. Suffering is a fiber of life, how do we weave it? Presented by Maureen Ceidro of Excela Home Care & Hospice.

Sept.    25    The General Idea, Part II  By special request Dr. Renee Waun will update us on what transpired at the UU General Assembly in Columbus in June, and why it might matter to folks like us in the congregations.
Oct.      2    Doctrine of Discovery - It was wrong then, and it is wrong now. We’ll look at some of the impacts of this doctrine which continue to be experienced by indigenous peoples in the U.S. Presented by Rev. Rebecca Booher. Drumming will precede the service - 10:00 to 10:20.

Oct.      9    Dancing on the Edge of Darkness  Whether it is our shadow self, depression, or the dark night of our souls… it is the dark side that provides us with much information about who we are... and who we are not… how can we face the darkness and still participate in the dance of life?  Presented by Maureen Ceidro, MA of Excela Health Home Care and Hospice.

Oct.    16    Why We Walk  A short history and exploration about this very human and spiritual endeavor. Presented by Rev. Bobbie Hineline.

Oct.    23    Water Communion  In these days when access to this precious resource is threatened around the world and in our own neighborhood, let us take time to honor and celebrate this life-supporting liquid. Members and friends are invited to bring a sample of water that has special or personal meaning. These waters will be mixed in a common vessel and will be used for some life-sustaining purpose. “Virtual water" will also be provided. Today's service will be facilitated by our president, Jim Galik.

Oct.    30    The Great Emergence  As a way of evaluating the present and looking ahead toward the future of our Fellowship, our minister, Dr. Waun will share thoughts on some issues addressed in Phyllis Tickle's book The Great Emergence as a lens for reflection.
Religious Education
Our classes provide religious education free of dogma. Exploring religious truth, meaning and experience is central to UU faith. In our communities and as individuals we seek lives of meaning anchored by values and a commitment to promote principles of justice, safety, tolerance and encouragement.
Religious Education classes are not scheduled at present. If you have children who may be interested please call 814-255-2676 or write to UU Fellowship of Ligonier Valley, 1730 Route 30 East, P. O. Box 692, Ligonier, PA 15658.
Child care is provided for children too young to participate in classes. 
UUFLV Dates to Remember
Sept.      4    Giant Eagle money due. Please see Ed Makuchan.
Sept.      6    Middlestream Mindfulness Meditation Group. 7:00 PM.
Sept.      7    Fresh Express. St. Michael’s in Rector. 3:00.
Sept.    15    Book Discussion. The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery 7:30 PM
Sept.    20    Middlestream Mindfulness Meditation Group. 7:00 PM.
Sept.    25    Board of Trustees meeting 9:15 AM. All members are invited to attend.
Oct.        1    Used & Unique Sale. 8:00 to 3:00
Oct.        2    Giant Eagle money due. Please see Ed Makuchan.
Oct.        4    Middlestream Mindfulness Meditation Group. 7:00 PM.
Oct.      13    Book discussion, The Cellist of Sarajevo by Steve Galloway. 7:30 PM.
Oct.      18    Middlestream Mindfulness Meditation Group. 7:00 PM.
Oct.      21    Groundswell Rising. A documentary film on fracking. 7:00 PM.
Oct.      23    Board of Trustee’s meeting at 9:15 AM. All members are invited to attend.
Oct.      23    CROP  Hunger Walk.  2:00 PM at St. James Lutheran Church.
Nov.       5    Greater Pittsburgh Cluster Assembly 1st UU Church of Pittsburgh. 9:00 - 3:00

 Other Activities

Self Inquiry Group
1:00 PM Saturday, Sept. 10
There is an Egyptian tale of two men whose fields were irrigated by a common manually operated water source allowing water to be channeled first to a ditch serving one field: then to a ditch serving the other. The men were in constant argument, accusing each other of taking more water for his field. An uncle of the men tired of hearing their arguments. He placed a large stone in the water channel, dividing the flow of water equally to both fields and solving the problem.
In 1956, Egypt and Britain were involved in military action over the Suez Canal. When informed of this, an elderly Nubian asked, “What’s the matter with them? Couldn’t they find anyone to put a stone in the middle?”
  Adapted from Nubians in Egypt; Peaceful People
by Robert A. Fernea

Falling Into Grace
1:00 PM Saturday, Sept. 24
"Beyond even any teaching, though, the aspect of spiritual life that is the most profound is the element of grace. Grace is something that comes to us when we somehow find ourselves completely available, when we become openhearted and open-minded, and are willing to entertain the possibility that we may not know what we think we know. In this gap of not knowing, in the suspension of any conclusion, a whole other element of life and reality can rush in. This is what we call grace. It's that moment of ‘ah-ha’—a moment of recognition when we realize something that previously we never could quite imagine."
- Adyashanti, Falling Into Grace
Being Yourself
Discussion, 1:00 PM. Sat. Oct. 8

Men are created different; they lose their social freedom and their individual autonomy in seeking to become like each other.
- David Riesman
In my clinical experience, the greatest block to a person's development is his having to take on a way of life which is not rooted in his own powers. - Rollo May
Groundswell Rising a documentary film
about industrial harm caused by hydraulic fracturing and our hope for the future.

Symptoms of Inner Peace
Discussion, 1:00 PM, Sat. Oct. 22

1. A tendency to think and act spontaneously, rather than based on past experience.
2. An unmistakable ability to enjoy each and every moment.
3. A loss of interest in judging others.
4. A loss of interest in judging self.
The above is part of an entry in a book by John Banks Templeton, Worldwide Laws of Life. The entry is noted “Author unknown.”
Meetings of the Self Inquiry Group are held on the lower level of the UUFLV meeting building, 1724 Route 30 East, Ligonier, PA. Please park at the rear of the building.
A Special Event
Friday, October 21 at 7:00
at our Fellowship building.

                            Light refreshments
This film captures the passion and courage of people engaged in a David and Goliath confrontation. They stand together, challenging a system that promotes profit over health. We meet mothers, fathers, scientists, doctors, farmers and people from all sides of the political spectrum taking a hard stand against energy extraction techniques not proven to be safe. With the oil and gas industry’s thrust to expand fracking seen as a moral and civil rights issue, this provocative film documents a people’s movement, a groundswell rising.
The screening of Groundswell Rising will be followed by a discussion with Mark Lichty, Executive Producer. Ordinary people are making choices to stand up and protect their communities and children’s future.
Of all the paths a man could strike into, there is, at any given moment, a best path ... a thing which, here and now, it were of all things wisest for him to do ... to find this path, and walk in it, is the one thing needful for him. - Thomas Carlyle
Dedication to one's work in the world is the only possible sanctification. Religion in all its forms is dedication to Someone Else's work, not yours.
- Cynthia Ozick

Book Discussion Group
An informal group where we share our ideas about the book of the month.
Books are selected by consensus. 
Visitors are welcome.
Oct. 13 at 7:30
The Cellist of Sarajevo by Steven Galloway
.  A spare and haunting, wise and beautiful novel about the endurance of the human spirit and the subtle ways individuals reclaim their humanity in a city ravaged by war.

 How to Find Us...

Ligonier, proceed east on Route 30 for approximately 1.5 miles. We are on the right side of the road just beyond Ligonier Valley Beach. Coming from the east we are about 2 miles west of Laughlintown on the left side of Route 30. Look for a large blue sign with white lettering.
Our mailing address is:
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Ligonier Valley
P.O. Box 692
1724 Route 30 (East)
Ligonier, PA 15658

Our telephone is usually unattended, but you are welcome to leave questions via voice mail. Please call 724-238-7797.