2016 Sunday Services



2016 January 03
LarryJo Weas
"What Will You Heal This New Year?"

LarryJo will interactively lead us through several questions: What is "Healing"? Who is a "Healer "? How do "Healers" Heal? What & Who needs Healing in Our/Your World? How do we know that we have healed? Our role (MLUUC) as Healers.

Service Leader: Bruce Wood; Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 January 10
Antione Simmons
"The Cost of Complacency"

White liberals have long been allies in the fight for equality, but many have become complacent. The costs of allowing racism to continue (and grow) are just too high to not do more, especially with racism running rampant today.

Service Leader: Laura Burton; Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday

2016 January 17
Amin Tomeh
"American Muslims: Their Beliefs and Practices"

This informative service will deal with religious freedom and how some groups of Americans still must face discrimination and even persecution simply for honoring their own search for personal truth and meaning. Presented by the Islamic Speakers Bureau of Atlanta.

Service Leader: Gayle Wood; Music: Kasey (CD). Soup Sunday

2016 January 24
Dr. Sally Pamplin
"Introduction to Buddhism"

Canceled due to snow and ice, rescheduled for 2016 March 20.

2016 January 31
Rev. David-Michael Searcy

Remember all of the things that you thought you wanted and wanted to be last year and the times we were so desperate for change in your lives and in our world? We were trying to find a way out of our personal worlds and just finally breath. Then right before your eyes you saw your heart open and come alive.

This isn't always easy to maintain in our everyday experience, but this it's not meant to be because life is about the ebb and flow.

Every story has it's scars, and when the pain cuts you deep and when the nights keep you from sleeping, all you have to do is to just look within, and you will see that Source Energy and your spiritual community will always be your remedy. No river is too wide or too deep for us to swim together. Come what may we will shelter each other and together our love for each other is our truth, and I promise you that this will be your Remedy.

Service Leader: Terry Woehr; Music: Kasey (CD). Potluck.

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2016 February 07
Ken Sizemore
"Keep Your Eyes On The Prize: The Soundtrack Of The Civil Rights Movement"

Ken Sizemore will perform the music that was played and sung at the rallies, marches, concerts, and protests of this important era in American history. Come and sing along to the songs that helped give courage and hope to those working for justice and fairness in the 50s and 60s.

Service Leader: Bruce Wood; Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 February 14, Valentines Day
Kasey Castleberry
"Jesus and Me: A Journey of Discovery"

In our fourth principle, Unitarian Universalists affirm and promote a free and responsible search for truth and meaning. Since Christianity has been an integral part of Unitarian Universalist religious tradition, please join us as we reexamine the importance of love and acceptance, as that message is underscored in the teachings of Jesus.

Service Leader: Lorraine Jones; Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 February 21
Helen Greene
"Meditation, Forgiveness & Kindness"

Situations surrounding people are often much more complex and problematic than first appear to be the case. Helen will use vignettes about kids, high school age, whom she has taught, who had much more going on in their lives than was apparent. Lessons learned from these vignettes apply to how she approaches people generally, adult to adult, and include her strategy for initially approaching people with kindness and willingness to listen. She gains energy and insights for her strategy from meditation and prayer, as guided by a variety of religious traditions.

Service Leader: Ed Wolpert; Music: Kasey (CD). Soup Sunday; Youth Sunday.

2016 February 28
Rev. Dr. Scott Dillard

What makes us believe what we do and why do we hold on to those beliefs even when they do not serve us well? This sermon looks at the nature of our beliefs and how they serve us and restrict us simultaneously.

Service Leader: Mike Davis; Music: Kasey (CD).

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2016 March 06
James Shafie
"Is Traditionalism a Disease"

Why I believe traditionalism is an enemy of any culture striving to be better. Traditionalism is with us from birth to even after death. Why is this way of life so prevalent? How has it survived? Why do people still believe in values thousands of years old?

James Shafie, from New Jersey now lives in Philadelphia PA. He attended The New York Film School and has worked in movies and Internet films. He works for Mom's, an all natural grocery chain and is the son of Helen Greene.

Service Leader: Helen Greene; Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 March 13, DST begins
Rev. Barry Whittemore
"Palm Sunday in Historical Context"

This sermon will explore the historic reality behind the events celebrated on Palm Sunday (March 20 this year) and delve into the meaning of those events for us today.

Service Leader: Gayle Wood; Music: Kathee Tomlin (piano).

2016 March 20, Spring Equinox, Palm Sunday
Dr. Sally Pamplin
"Introduction to Buddhism"

On this Palm Sunday, Sally will be discussing aspects of Buddhism, such as mindfulness in eating and taking time to appreciate the "now".

RE: The Youth will continue to explore our Seven Principles.

Service Leader: Kasey Castleberry; Music: Kasey (CD). Sandwich Sunday; Youth Sunday.

2016 March 27, Easter Sunday
Rev. David-Michael Searcy
"Dream Maker"

In this Beautiful Season of New Life and New Beginnings we can create a perfect world without jealousy, abuse or hate, all of us just living off of love and never giving up because we want to connect to the Master Love. Our world is just so beautiful and we want to see it come to life and we do this by connecting to the divine Dream maker in all of us who makes our dreams come true. Let’s together take this journey to euphoria, I'm ready for us, the dreamers to be awake with Brilliant vision and Crystal clear dreams that allows us to be inspired to be the Master love and lets affirm within the living eggs of ourselves a new affirmation of new life not just for us personally, but for the world around us.

As we enter into the Universal celebration principles of Resurrection at the Vernal Spring Equinox which is, after all named for the Anglo-Saxon Goddess Eostre (Easter), Goddess of the East, of Spring and Rebirth and Resurrection. We like the pagan Anglo-Saxons of old will have our offerings of colored eggs, the symbol of new life filled with affirmations for our new journeys ahead. As the Sun rises in the East join us for our Sunrise service as we celebrate the new life of the divine within us all and the newness we know for the world around us.

Service Leader: Terry Woehr; Music: Chris Cribbs (guitar). Brunch. Music: Kasey & David-Michael (CD).

Ted and Terry Woehr are once again hosting our Easter sunrise service at their home in Coosawattee River Resort. (Check the newsletter for directions.) Be sure to bring a folding chair and a blanket, as it will likely be chilly. Following the service, we continue our tradition of presenting Easter brunch.

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2016 April 03
Samantha Davis
"Turn Up the Heat on Global Warming"

Sam's presentation will be about the truth of climate change and the effect on our future.

Service Leader: Mike Davis. Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 April 10
Terry Woehr and Donna Waddell
"Stewardship and UU for You"

In keeping with MLUUC's "do your own thing" philosophy, members Terry Woehr and Donna Waddell will combine a Pledge/Stewardship presentation and the "UU for You" course. Together they will share with the congregation many of the principles of Unitarian Universalism and Stewardship.

Youth Sunday: In the youth RE program we will be exploring UU traditions and rituals with a special focus on the upcoming Flower Communion.

Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 April 17
Laura Burton
"Passover Seder Meal"

Member Laura Burton will present the Passover Seder meal as a service. Laura says that there's a good deal of explaining, and we eat as we go, as all of the food is symbolic. Our Seder is going to be very much a UU Welcoming Seder, including some newer traditions to show inclusion of marginalized people.

Service Leader: Ed Wolpert. Music: none.

2016 April 24
Rev. Dr. Scott Dillard
"Let's Be Kind"

As our world seems to get more and more coarse in its divisions into taking sides on various issues, insisting on being "right" about what we should do and believe, we must learn to practice the art of kindness with one another. The generous heart that might help us see one another as beacons of light will help us bridge those divides and heal the woundings we may have encountered.

Service Leader: Thomas Ash. Music: Lorraine Jones (CD).

Youth Sunday: In our RE youth program we will continue our focus on the Flower Communion and be preparing to lead the service the following Sunday.

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2016 May 01
"Flower Communion"

This Sunday, we at Mountain Light UUC will have our annual Flower Communion. Originally created in 1923, this beautiful ceremony exemplifies our belief in beloved community. As a special treat, this year, our youth Religious Education program participants will be leading the program.

If you are able, please bring flowers to share. If you are unable to bring a flower, we still encourage you to attend, as there will be plenty to go around. You will not want to miss the multi-generational service.

Music: Kasey (CD including Hope Cribbs).

2016 May 08
Tom Norris
"God As Love: A Search for Meaning"

We will explore why we should consider rejecting the complex religions conceived by man and seek our own spiritual truth based on love, instead. God is love and love is god.

Tom Norris has come to us from a background of spiritual study and man's search to make sense of his man-made god. Join us to explore with him how we have arrived at where we are today with the freedom to choose how we experience our relationship with with God. There are no rights or wrongs. Open discussion follows.

Service Leader: Gretchen Norris.
Music: Kasey (CD #016 and #131)

2016 May 15, Mother's Day
Gretchen Norris

Mountain Light member Gretchen Norris will bring the topic of "healing" to us. Long searched for and often doubted, healing is a controversial subject. Come join us as we search our own beliefs from biblical times to the present.

Service Leader: Tom Norris. Music: Kasey (CD). Sandwich Sunday

11:30 - Extra Speaker - Joanne Waddey from Adopt a Road

2016 May 22
Dr. Gary Hullquist
"Eden Pointe Lifestyle Center"

Our speaker, Dr. Gary Hullquist, will be the medical director from the Eden Pointe Lifestyle Center, located in Talking Rock GA. The Center embraces biblical health principles through the eight natural doctors found in the bible. Through proper education, they teach how to prevent and reverse disease naturally through a godly lifestyle program called NEWSTART. (Website)

Service Leader: Bruce Wood. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 May 29
Rev. David-Michael Searcy
"God Speaking"

Have you heard a love song that set you free or watched a sunrise that took your breathe away. This is God Speaking!

Have you ever cried a tear that you could not explain or lost a loved one and still felt a strange joy through the tangled fear and pain? This is God Speaking!

Goddess/God is always getting our attention, and IT uses life circumstances and the voices of our neighbors and even a stranger to tell us that we are loved and supported.

Service Leader: Terry Woehr. Potluck. Music: Kasey & David-Michael (CD).

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2016 June 05
"Annual Congregational Meeting"

President Gayle Wood presiding.

2016 June 12
Rev. Dr. Scott Dillard
"The Spiritual Use of Voice"

We often forget that it isn't just what we say but how we say things that connect us with each other and community and, ultimately, with that which is divine. This sermon examines our use of voice as a means to connect.

Service Leader: Ann Low. Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 June 19, Father's Day
Rev. Barry Whittemore
"Who's in Charge Here? The Art and Science of Theological Reflection"

This sermon will note the difference between thinking theologically and the more mundane personal opinion (or prejudice) and how we might go about it.

Service Leader: Bruce Wood. Music: Kasey (CD). Sandwich Sunday.

2016 June 26
Karl Seidman
"The Holocaust and Holocaust Remembrance Ceremony"

Mountain Light friend, Karl Seidman, will deliver a presentation on the Holocaust. He has been chairman of the Holocaust Remembrance Program in Citrus County, Florida. His interest in the Holocaust dates back to the 1990s when he was a docent for the Ann Frank exhibit in South Brunswick NJ.

Service Leader: Gayle Wood.

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2016 July 03
Mark Bodnar
"Linking Spirituality with Physical Fitness and Recreation"

We are complex beings with many facets determining our overall health and wellbeing. In this discussion we will look at the relationship between physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual health and; specifically, how might fitness and recreation deepen our spiritual growth.

Mark Bodnar is a certified yoga instructor and ASCM-Certified Exercise Physiologist. He is also a part-time professor in the Exercise Science Department at GSU. He holds degrees in Biology, Music, Education, and Exercise Science. In addition to being a volunteer trip leader with Touch the Earth, GSU's outdoor recreation program, he is an active member of the music ministry program at his church, The Catholic Shrine in downtown Atlanta. His other interests include travel, religion and metaphysics, and outdoor activities such as biking, rock climbing, hiking/camping, and white water sports.

Service Leader: Bruce Wood. Music: Mark Bodnar (guitar). Red, White, & Blue dessert fest. Board Meeting.

2016 July 10
Laura Burton
"Poverty in America"

Mountain Light member, Laura Burton, has given presentations on poverty in the past, examining its causes and discussing possible solutions to the problem. This updated presentation will highlight the urgency for social and political assistance for those in need.

Service Leader: Kasey Castleberry. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 July 17
Rebecca Miller
"Statistics to Stability: Changing the trajectory for children in foster care"

Learn how equine facilitated learning and weekly mentorship can positively impact the life course of foster and adopted children!

Service Leader: Donna Waddell. Sandwich & Sundae Sunday.

2016 July 24
Adrienne Corticelli
"Here's My UU 4 U: Julie Burkhart"

As part of this series on our favorite Unitarian Universalists and how they inspire us, MLUUC member Adrienne Corticelli will give a personal account of the friend who introduced her to Unitarian Universalism.

Service Leader: Linda Kelly. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 July 31
Rev. David-Michael Searcy
"The Lord's Prayer/ Matthew 6:9-13"

I have been deeply pondering the events of this last month in our world, and I have had to process through the pain, the anger, the disappointment, the betrayal and the unforgiveness of the world around me.

I feel that we are in a battle here, this is a not a battle between white and black or good and evil. It is a battle of consciousness. I have been using the Lord's Prayer to help me move through this time. This battle is an internal one. Thy Kingdom Come and thy will be done on Earth and in this Earthen vessel as it is in Heaven, Give us this day our daily bread or word and forgive us our Trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.

There is much to be healed and forgiven. I feel that we are called to go deeper in our prayer work for ourselves to uncover any and all places that we are still wounded. We are called to be the healing presence of Goddess/God wherever we go.

We have to celebrate the differences in all people and accept those differences without judgment or agenda. Life is Precious, handle with prayer.

Service Leader: Ted Woehr. Music: Kasey & David-Michael (CD).Potluck.

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2016 August 07
Rev. Dr. Scott Dillard
"Memorial Service for Carol Johnson"

Family and friends will gather on this Sunday to honor our dear friend and member, Carol Johnson, who passed on June 17.

Coordinator: Gayle Wood. Music: Kasey (CD & solo). Repast after service.

2016 August 14
Ed Wolpert & Gayle Wood
"Here's My UU 4 U"

The series on our Unitarian-Universalist influences continues as two Mountain Light members share a short presentation on a person who inspired them in their UU journeys. Gayle Wood will be speaking about Olympia Brown. Ed Wolpert will be speaking about Jim McKinney.

Service Leader: Kasey. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 August 21
Bruce Wood for Nate Watson
"Courage to Care"

Nate was unable to attend. He was to speak of issues surrounding Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), in general and especially among military veterans. Nate is a disabled veteran himself and works as a PTSD specialist with the Air Force Reserve Command Psychological Health Advocacy Program, helping Air Force veterans, their families, communities, and employers deal with those PTSD issues.

Service Leader Col. Bruce Wood, US Army (Retired), took command and delivered what became a rousing sermon on how we, as a faith community, were morally obligated to respond compassionately to those suffering through PTSD and other related conditions. Bruce shared some of his own military experience and then, citing the Gospel of St. Matthew, suggested the idea of helping the suffering civil community, as well. Following his presentation, the congregation engaged one another in a very thought-provoking discussion of how traumatic events can transform us, for better or worse, and how different communities and different times treated these people.

Service Leader: Bruce Wood. Music: Kasey (CD). Sandwich Sunday.

2016 August 28
Kasey Castleberry
"A Spiritual Response to Hate and Ignorance"

Have you found yourself in an awkward position where mean-spiritedness or misinformed attitudes have made you uncomfortable and unsure how to respond? If we are to honor our principles, then it behooves us to know how to confront such situations with compassion. Standing on the Side of Love is not always easy, but let us explore how we might succeed.

Service Leader: Thomas Ash. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

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2016 September 04
Kathie Woehr
"Camp Unirondack: Learning, Living, and working the UU principles"

Kathie Woehr was raised in a UU family. Starting at 13, she went to Unirondack as a camper, then as a Camp Counselor, then as Kitchen Wench, then to being in charge of the kitchen (from meal planning, prep, etc.). At (almost) 40, she will share some camp stories and relate her summers to our Principles and how she lives her life today.

Service Leader: Terry Woehr. Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 September 11
Rev. Scott Dillard
"Memorial Service for Mike Davis"

Our dear friend and member, Mike Davis passed away on August 29. Join his friends and family as we celebrate his life.

Coordinator: Gayle Wood. Music: Kasey (CD & solo). Repast after service.

2016 September 18
Gayle Wood
"Water Ceremony"

Our Water Communion is an annual tradition at Mountain Light UUC. Bring a small amount of water from a place that is special to you, maybe collected during summer vacation. We will pour the water together, in a symbolic ceremony representing how our shared faith comes from many different sources.

Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 September 25
Rev. David-Michael Searcy

This Sunday we will discuss living with vertigo and moving out of the embarrassment and shame around the dis-ease, finding the spiritual meaning, walking in forgiveness and LOVING The Self.

Service Leader: Laura Burton. Music: Kasey & David-Michael (CD).

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2016 October 02
Jan Day
"Positive Impact through Youth Programs"

Jan W. Day is the Unit Director for the Gilmer County Boys and Girls Club and also serves as the Coordinating Facilitator for the Gilmer County Stewards of Children, focusing on the issue of child sexual abuse. Jan will share how these two programs have and are working to make positive impacts on the lives of children in Gilmer County as well as the parents, guardians, and families who care for them and how our community can become involved as volunteers and trainees.

Service Leader: Linda Kelly. Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 October 09
Ken Sizemore
"Folk Music UU Style"

The presentation this Sunday will be a musical performance by our friend, the old folkie himself, Ken Sizemore.

Service Leader: Tom Norris. Music: Lorraine (CD) & Ken (guitar). Youth Sunday.

2016 October 16, National Boss' Day
Gayle Wood
"New Member Celebration"

MLUUC President Gayle Wood will preside over a service to recognize our newest members.

Music: a Capella. Soup Sunday.

2016 October 23
Rev. Dr. Scott Dillard
"The Spiritual Side of Grief"

When we lose another from this world, we are often at a loss as to how to cope with that loss. By viewing the grieving process as a spiritual journey that teaches us about ourselves and about life, we can learn to handle losing another.

Service Leader: Bruce Wood. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 October 30
Alexandra Tremblay
"Innovations in Immunological Research"

Dr. Alexandra Tremblay conducts research in the immunology laboratory at Georgia State University. Her presentation will be about innovations in immunological research, especially vaccines, immunotherapy, chronic inflammation, and systemic implications of the progress in this research for public health policy.

Dr. Tremblay is a recent PhD grad from GSU. She studied chronic inflammation and cancer, especially inflammatory bowel disease, in GSU's Immunology Laboratory. That lab at GSU investigates the role of the immune system in eliminating cancer and other immune disorders. She is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor at Oxford College of Emory University in Covington GA.

Service Leader: Bruce Wood. Music: Kasey (CD). Potluck.

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2016 November 06, DST ends
Rev. Barry Whittemore
"Amos: A Prophet for our times"

In times such as these, it behooves us to look deep into our history at the insight, wisdom, and power of our ancient prophets and progenitors of our religion. A little advance reading might be beneficial.

Service Leader: Ed Wolpert. Music: Lisa Haynes (piano).

2016 November 13
Ted Woehr
"Native American Brown Corn Ceremony"

Mountain Light member, Ted Woehr, will be sharing the Native American Brown Corn Ceremony. This is of the Iroquois "Handsome Lake" tradition.

Service Leader: Terry Woehr. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 November 20
Karl Seidman
"Guiding Concepts"

Karl will be talking about commonalities between several of the UU Principles and several concepts which guide the United States that are contained in significant documents such as the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. He will try to explain what he suggests we might call a common paradigm between the two – a common way of looking at things.

Service Leader: Helen Greene. Music: Kasey (CD). Soup Sunday

2016 November 27, Advent begins
Rev. David-Michael Searcy
"Peace Train"

Now that the elections are behind us, we are called to higher vibration of consciousness and to be reminded that we collectively create our reality. We as co-creators with Source Energy create the future world that is congruent with our most beautiful dreams for ourselves, humanity and the planet. We must enact our inherent Creator/ Creatrix nature and no longer cling to victim consciousness. We aren't waiting for some powerful other or politician to swoop in to rescue us or to be our redemption. The power of life and death is in the consciousness of our thoughts and tongues.

Service Leader: Gayle Wood. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

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2016 December 04
Mary Anderson
"The Unitarian Couple, the Sharps, who fought genocide in World War II"

This is the story of Waitstill and Martha Sharp who left their small children and the safety of their home in Massachusetts to go to Europe to save refugees as the Nazis marched across Europe. In doing so they placed themselves in grave danger. Waitstill was a Unitarian minister and Martha was a social worker.

Service Leader: Bruce Wood. Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 December 11
MiaoMing (Mark Troxell)
"Heart Chan East Regional Retreat Center"

MiaoMing (Mark Troxell) will present an overview of Chan, a spiritual practice that is not a religion but is compatible with all religions; a complementary practice aimed at evolving the spirit so that we may become something greater at the end of this life than we were when we entered it. Chan doesn't require you to change the form you are comfortable with, nor to throw away or replace anything. Rather, it helps you see more brightly and with greater detail what you already have, so you can more deeply appreciate it. MiaoMing will explain how Chan relates to and benefits normal daily life from physical, mental and spiritual perspectives.

Mark, an American who does not speak Chinese, received a heart-to-heart transmission from a Chan Master who does not speak English, during their first meeting in China in late 2011.

MiaoMing is the Abbot of Heart Chan East Regional Retreat Center in Ellijay. (Facebook)

Service Leader: Adrienne Corticelli. Music: Kasey (CD). Youth Sunday.

2016 December 18
Rev. Dr. Scott Dillard
"Do Not Let the Sun Go Down While You Are Still Angry"

Rev. Dillard will be talking about this passage from Ephesians and how this bit of practical advise might serve us well in difficult times.

Service Leader: Lorraine Jones. Music: Kasey (CD).

2016 December 25, Christmas Day, Hanukkah begins
Diana Rae
"Edible Gift Exchange"

Our Christmas Day Service on Sunday, 25 DEC 2016, will be an Edible Gift Exchange. Each congregant brings a simple, favorite food item to give to another congregant to take home. As we give our food gifts, we share a brief story with the group about why this particular food item is special to us, for example, how it reminds us of an important person, feeling, or event in our lives. We will attach a number to our gifts as we arrive, draw numbers to see who receives which gift, then tell our stories as we present our gift to the lucky person who drew our number. Gifts may be made at home or purchased.

Music: Kasey (CD). No RE this Sunday.