Sunday, December 8, 2013

Little Drummer Boy - Pentatonix

Have you seen this version of Little Drummer Boy?





Compassionate Friends Candle Lighting


Lighting a candle from 7pm til 8pm tonight for my nephew Tyler Rudy.
And for my friend Robert.
And for all the children that have died too soon.
Please join the world in light a candle tonight from 7 pm til 8 pm and watch us light up the world.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

The Seventh Day of Chalica 2013

We light our chalice for respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.
Examples:
- start a compost
- recycle bottles and cans and donate the money to an environmental / animal aid society
- rescue an animal from a shelter
- hold an outdoor worship service (dress warm/bonfire)
Image courtesy of digitalart/FreeDigitalphotos.net

Give gift(s) to our earth and/or its creatures

What will you do today to honor our earth? I am finding a little harder to bend down and pick up trash left from others this year. But I still had the kids help at the park with a trash race this year. This year we decided to go with a recycling company that picks up everything in one can. It has made recycling in our home so much easier!  We are already training our 2 year old grandson to put things in the recycling can!  He has been putting trash in the trash basket since he was about 18 months.  Both our grandsons are a joy.  Another things we are working on is recycling or re-purposing our "STUFF".  It is amazing how much stuff we gather in our homes and how it really can take over our lives. And how we often don't really need it. There are many places that take used clothes, toys and other things and resale them for low prices. It gives me a good feeling when I give things away when I know someone else will get some joy out of them.
Here's a great article on 101 Household Tips for your home that reuses & re-purposes many items. * see below for a couple of my favorites.
 I read an article about paring down the amount of clothes in your closet. One of the things that it talks about is that by paring down the clothes in your clothes it makes it easier to find your favorite clothes, you save time by not having to search for certain items and that you can feel good by giving others a chance to enjoy your clothes.
I have found that it is easier to do this in stages. Stage 1 was getting rid of clothes that were too big or too small. Stage 2 was starting the process of getting rid of things that I don't wear that often.  Stage 3 will be to continue the process.  One easy way for me  was to do it while the week's laundry was in the laundry room.

Good luck in your work for making the earth a better place.

 Blessed be,

Kathy

 Remember tonight at 7pm for one hour to join the Worldwide Candle Lighting by lighting a candle for children who have died.





CD large case for small cake dish

Plastic bottle top to seal bags

Egg carton for Christmas decorations

Old slinky made into bird feeder

toilet paper rolls
















Friday, December 6, 2013

The Sixth Day of Chalica 2013

Today we light our chalice for the goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all.
I would like to remind you about something that is happening on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013 to bring the world community together. It is the Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting. Compassionate Friends is an organization for people who have lost children in anyway. they have support groups and once a year on the 2nd Sunday in December they do this candle lighting that starts at 7pm in New Zealand and as different time zones turn to 7pm, they’ll light up for an hour - so candles will be lit for a full 24 hours across the globe.

_________________________________


These Worldwide Candle Lighting Posters may be used for publicity. Posters are copyrighted and may not be changed in any manner.

 Give gift(s) to honor our global community
Examples:
- volunteer with an organization that has global influence
- write a letter for amnesty international
- help your social justice committee hold a fundraiser
- donate to a cause such as UNICEF, Doctors without Borders, etc.

Blessed be,

Kathy

P.S.
For more information check out the following posters:


Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Fifth Day of Chalica 2013


Happy Chalica!

What will you do today to honor our Fifth Principle?

To the left is the children's version of our Principles, which is we can search for what is true.

The adult version of this principle is: The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large.
Give gift(s) to honor democracy

Examples:
- help a political party
- write your government
- help a committee at church
- host a dinner / party to celebrate democracy
 What are you doing today with the Fifth principle in mind?
 
My Chalica Chalice

Today I will be lighting my Chalice for the 5th Principle and for the great man Nelson Mandela who died yesterday.   He was 95 and led an incredible life. Mr. Mandela was a man who stood up for the people as a fighter against apartheid in South Africa.  He was jailed for 30 years.  When he was released he was still determined to see a apartheid free South Africa, but he wanted to do it without a Civil War.  In 1994 he was then elected President of South Africa and served until 1999. He was South Africa's first black President.  After his election he said:
"The time for the healing of the wounds has come. The moment to bridge the chasms that divide us has come,"
 Let us never forget that it can take just one person to start the democratic process for anything.


What are you doing today with the Fifth principle in mind? Have you thought of writing to your Senators and House of Representatives asking them to work together to straighten out the economy?


Remember to check in on Chalica! and let us know where you are from and if this is your 1st, 2nd, 3rd or ? year celebrating Chalica. 



Blessed Be!

Kathy










The Fourth Day of Chalica 2013

Happy Chalica!

What will you do today to honor our Fourth Principle?

To the right is the children's version of our Principles, which is we can search for what is true.

The adult version of this principle is: a free and responsible search for truth and meaning.

What does this mean to you?  Last year on the 4th day of Chalica the two lost Iowa couins were found unfortunately they were not found alive.  In two days it will be that anniversary, and there are still no answers to what happened to them.  One of my dear friends, Diane and her family were neighbors and friends of one of the girl,  sometimes we forget that family are not the only ones affected by something like this. People are slowly getting on with their lives.

Give gift(s) to honor another tradition, to honor education
Examples:
- offer / take part in an event that celebrates another religion / tradition
- teach someone something you know and love
- learn something new from someone else
- give a book / read a book

I just learned about a new tradition being promoted by I am UU on Facebook. It is called "This Little Light" Chalice Challenge, Solstice Weekend! The challenge is to change your profile picture on Facebook to a flaming chalice for the solstice weekend or you can add a simple chalice to any profile, you can use this link to do so: http://twb.ly/IgJSWE
I love the following lines from the website:

"This is a non-intrusive way to share your Unitarian Universalist identity with your friends (and their friends) at a time of year when a lot of people are looking for a loving, encouraging community. Will you join us in spreading this idea? Share this idea with your friends and your congregation, and let's see if we can't get thousands of Flaming Chalices popping up all over Facebook!You might want to check out both these these sites."
 This Little Light by Lisa C Williams


Below is a photo that was posted on this little light site. Isn't it beautiful! 





Blessed Be!

Kathy


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The Third Day of Chalica 2013

Happy Chalica!

What will you do today to honor our Third Principle?

To the left is the children's version of our Principles, which is we are free to learn together.

It is interesting that it doesn't  say what you are to learn, just learn with someone else.  This a good day to have an older child read to a younger one. 

The adult version of this principle is: Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations.

Give gift(s) to honor fellow Unitarians and their spiritual journey.
Examples:
- a chalice / book / hymnal
- extend words of peace or forgiveness to a fellow Unitarian with whom you may have hurt / not understood in the past
- offer / take part in an event at your church / with your congregation
- church potluck

Some good books to read to children today are:
Aisha's Moonlit Walk: Stories And Celebrations For The Pagan Year by Anika Stafford
Butterflies Under Our Hats (Paraclete Books for Children) by Sandy Eisenberg Sasso
A Lamp in Every Corner: Our Unitarian Universalist Storybook by Janeen K. Grohsmeyer
 Unitarian Universalism Is a Really Long Name by Jennifer Dant
Today might be a good day to just listen to all the Chalica songs. I have looking them over again trying to pick one for each day. 

Here's a couple of my favorite quotes that I think go with Day Three.
  The truth is that the more intimately you know someone, the more clearly you'll see their flaws. That's just the way it is. This is why marriages fail, why children are abandoned, why friendships don't last. You might think you love someone until you see the way they act when they're out of money or under pressure or hungry, for goodness' sake. Love is something different. Love is choosing to serve someone and be with someone in spite of their filthy heart. Love is patient and kind, love is deliberate. Love is hard. Love is pain and sacrifice, it's seeing the darkness in another person and defying the impulse to jump ship.

― Unknown

The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education.

― Martin Luther King, Jr.
Blessed Be, 
Kathy

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Second Day of Chalica 2013

Happy Chalica!

What will you do today to honor our Second Principle?

To the right is the children's version of our Principles, which is to guide our children to treating everyone with kindness especially when in a group of people.

It is very easy on a one-to-one basis to be kind and fair with others, but when our children are in a group, especially with a group of their peers, this can be much more difficult.

The adult version of this principle is: justice, equity and compassion in human relations. Sometimes when we try to get justice for others we forget that all people need compassion. 

Give gift(s) to honor those in your local community that are less fortunate.
Examples:
- spend time in a soup kitchen
- donate clothes to a worthy organization
- display kindness and care to those around you
- take part in a political demonstration at city hall
The UUA has a great article regarding the Second Principle that I highly recommend reading.

One of my favorite stories about compassion is located on a page at the Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship website.
Some good books to read to children today are:
Accept and Value Each Person (Learning to Get Along) by Cheri J. Meiners M.Ed. 
Horton Hears A Who! by Dr. Seuss
On Chalica! someone posted that their child was trying to convince them they needed presents.  I have found the best explanation for this from The Chalica Story by Lisa Romantum Schwartz.
“Chalica is more about gifts than presents, baby girl.”
“Presents, gifts … what’s the difference?”
“The gifts of Chalica are not usually things you can wrap up with paper and ribbons. They’re things like forgiveness, understanding, joy and belonging. If Chalica is an alternative holiday, it won’t lead us to buy and consume even more stuff. It’ll lead us to explore our values, and find new ways to live as Unitarian Universalists.”

Blessed be,

Kathy

Sunday, December 1, 2013

First Day of Chalica

Happy Chalica!

What will you do today to honor our First Principle?
 To the left is the children's version of our Principles, which is to guide our children to treating everyone as they would like to be treated.

Our adult First Principle is: The inherent worth and dignity of every person.  So it is just a bit more than thinking everyone is important. We also have to be respectful of others and their choices in life.  How does this effect you?

So things that you can do today:
Give gift(s) to honor those you do not understand / agree with / like.
  • Examples:
  • - a thank-you card celebrating differences
  • - words of forgiveness / apology
  • - a peace offering such as inviting someone to dinner
  • - help someone in need
Read books:
  • My favorite books for the little ones are: Pink by Lynne Rickards
  • and The Big Orange Splot by D. Manus Pinkwater and Daniel Manus Pinkwater 
  • I have just heard about a book called: Randy Bradley by Jake Bohstedt Morrill minister of  Oak Ridge Unitarian Universalist Church
Rev. Morrill's father was one of the people that attempted to stop that gunman at the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church in Knoxville. The gunman started firing on the members and visitors because he believed that the church was being UnAmerican by accepting gays, lesbians and others that were different.  Fortunately, there was a huge outpouring of love and healing from around the world from many different people of many different religions.  On of the out comes was our Standing on The Side of Love campaign

 Here's some interesting things to do at the Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

UUA First Principle

For more ideas check out My Chalica Book: A Beginner's Guide created by Meredith Plummer, Director of Religious Education at the First Unitarian Church of Cincinnati

Blessed Be.

Kathy

Chalica starts Tomorrow!

Tomorrow is the first day of Chalica.  What are you planning?  Will you do some projects to help others?  Or will you talk within your family about what the Principle mean to you all? I am planning on reading a book each day to my grandchildren that goes along with each Principle.  We will be using the rainbow chalice above and since I will be working with the little ones we will be using the battery candles.  Do you have any good children's books to suggest?
If you have a smartphone and are at a loss as to a chalice lighting reading you might want to get the Illuminations app that the Church of the Larger Fellowship has put out. It has many different chalice lighting and a couple of different chalices that you can light.