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Second Congregational Meeting House Society

Unitarian Universalist 11 Orange St. ~ P.O. Box 1023 Nantucket, MA 02554 (508) 228-5466

Nantucket Unitarian Universalist Newsletter ~ November 2011


Reflections on the life and lives of a religious community by Rev. David M. Horst We live 30 miles out to sea, but we do not live apart from the world -- though in turbulent times such as these we might wish we were. The deep divisions in the body politic of our nation are felt here in the eastern-most part of the nation as they are throughout the country. My ministry with you is focused chiefly on the transition and renewal of the congregation, yet the events of the world keep intruding. The Occupy Wall Street and Tea Party movements are not so far away, and both arise from deep fears about our broken political and economic system. Energizing these movements are a looming presidential race, expected to be the nastiest and most money-fueled campaign in history; a mind-boggling government debt; unemployment for millions; an ugly and unrelenting war in Afghanistan; and a corporate-driven news media that favors entertainment over insight. Not a happy picture by any means, yet the work of renewing and revitalizing your liberal religious community on this little island most go on. In truth, your commitment to this congregation is imperative given the troubles and turmoil we are experiencing in our nation and world right now. Why? Because you, the members and friends of this liberal religious community, need each other now more than ever. You need comfort from fear, you need challenge to act. We all need to be reminded regularly of our shared democratic values of equality, fairness, and freedom. We need also to be reminded of our shared religious values of human dignity, tolerance, and compassion. The Second Congregational Society lives in the world, yet it must not conform to the harshness and indecency we see in much of the world. You and I gather weekly to envision a different and better world; we depart each week to act on this vision. I believe a congregation of committed and informed members can make a difference in a fractured word. The difference you and I make will be felt in (continued on page 3)


“Celebration of Community” Rev. David M. Horst Don’t forget Daylight Savings Time Ends This Sunday!

Sunday, Nov. 13 “Left, Right and In-Between” Rev. David M. Horst

Sunday, Nov. 20 “ Giving Thanks” Rev. David M. Horst

Sunday, Nov. 27

“Gratitude Beyond Thanksgiving” Lay-Led Fourth Sunday

Families Welcome! Sunday School for Children Each Week

Save the Date! The Board of Trustees and Finance Committee invite members, friends, and staff to an important meeting on Friday evening, November 4, at 5:15 p.m. in Hendrix Hall to discuss income and allocations for next year.

Predicting the Future

by Jack Weinhold, Treasurer and Brian Girard, Finance Committee Chair

The pledge campaign concludes on November 9 and the 2012 budget process begins soon. We are seeking ideas and input from everyone about budget priorities for the coming year. The meeting will be limited to an hour and a half. Childcare will be available upon request. Please come and participate in this process to bring liberal religious excellence to the island.

Predicting the Future. Each autumn, that’s exactly what the Finance Committee is asked to do as it assembles the congregation’s operating budget for the coming year. Luckily we have help from all our members in this task. Your pledge answers the largest question we have about how much money there will be for the coming year. We add the pledges to our informed estimates of the other sources of income: investment interest, rentals, events, and fund raising.

Religious Education Update

by Sally Ure and Lizie Hagenstein, Lifespan Religious Education Co-Directors Be sure to join us for Stone Soup Sunday on November 6th. Please bring vegetables-peeled, diced and ready for the pot for our annual community feast! This year our Food Pantry Wagon Train will take place on Sunday, November 20th. The children will collect nonperishable foods from our congregants as well as our church neighbors. Please bring some non-perishables in to help fill our wagons! If you have a red wagon that you can bring, we could use it as well!

The total of all the income sources then determines how much there will be to operate the areas of: Ministry, Administration, Music, Lifespan Religious Education and Building & Grounds. Your pledge card also gives us information about when you will fulfill your pledge, and that is a big help in managing cash flow for the year. If you have not sent your pledge card in, please do it today. It takes the guess work out of budgeting and operating our church. Thanks to all from your Finance Committee.

Several special events are being planned as we move into the holiday season. Our youth and children will be decorating a Christmas tree downtown at the end of November, with the exact location to be arranged. There are also plans for an interfaith youth skating event in November. Date and time will be announced soon. And our Senior Youth group will be hosting an interfaith youth group Christmas caroling evening in December.

Have you made your pledge for 2012? Do it today! We need you!


(continued from page 1) our congregational life together and our engagement in the life of this country. This month’s first Sunday morning worship service and religious education program celebrates us, Nantucket’s Unitarian Universalist congregation, on November 6. The service is preceded by a meeting of members and friends on Friday meeting, November 4, at 5:15 p.m. to discuss the near-term vision of the congregation as we conclude the annual pledge campaign and begin the budgeting and allocations process for 2012. On the second Sunday of the month, November 13, I reflect on the current political and economic crisis through the lens of religion and faith and suggest ways we might respond. Come for equal doses of comfort and challenge as we nurture our religious community and seek a better world. “Where land and sea meet” is my Nantucket analogy for congregational life. A church lives in a tidal zone where our private and public lives meet and converge like the meeting place of the land and sea.

Music Committee Update

by Jack Reindel, Music Committee Chair In our historic sanctuary beginning September 12 and continuing for the four following weeks, Bob Lehman and his charming wife and talented accompanist Diane Towle Lehman presented a series of Monday Concerts at Noon entitled “Stories and Songs - All Delivered With a Smile in 45 Minutes or Less - Bob Lehman Sings the Repertoire of his Favorite American Tunesmiths.” The concerts were a huge success, both artistically and financially. Each ended with a standing ovation from a grateful and appreciative audience. Bob’s stories, told between delivering the songs in his unmistakable, cheerful fashion, were an engaging tutorial on the life and times of the musical geniuses -the Irving Berlins, Cole Porters, Johnny Mercers and others whose work comprises ‘’The American Songbook” and has endured unscathed through many a thicket of musical fashion since the era of big bands, blockbuster musicals, and Hollywood extravaganzas, when it all began. Think “September Song” and “Blues in the Night”, “My Fair Lady” and “Pal Joey.” So our heartfelt thanks go out to you, Diane and Bob, for your wonderful performances which help keep these treasured tunes alive and well and playing in

Diane and Bob Lehman (Photo by Jack Weinhold)

venues from Madaket to Maui, from Surfside to Singapore and beyond. It should be noted here in the thank yous that Bob has donated the over $1,000 collected at the concert door to the UU Church Building Maintenance Fund. Could this portend a weekly wintertime extension of our well-known Noonday Concert Series, shifting to Hendrix Hall? Donations accepted. It’s under consideration. Please stay tuned. And keep an ear out for word on the Lehmans possibly appearing during Stroll, venue unknown at this point.


South Church Preservation Fund Report by Leslie W. Ottinger

With installation of the new lighting in the front of the sanctuary, the first phase of the lighting upgrade is now complete. Evening illumination was reported to have been very satisfactory for the recent Shirat HaYam services. The next phase will involve the installation of new sconces and chandelier lighting. Estimates for replacement carpets and runners are in hand and a recommendation for pattern and color is being developed for consideration by the Society. Work to restore the windows will begin in mid-November, removing them one at a time over the winter. Contracts for refinishing the lectern and pew caps are still pending. Funds in hand appear sufficient to accomplish these projects. The Permanent Maintenance Fund Committee has assembled the needed materials and developed a detailed plan for moving ahead. The goal of completing the effort by December 31 is still judged attainable.

Music Notes

by Marcia Hempel, Music Director We now have two hymnals; we are also using the new Supplementary Hymnal from the UUA, called Singing the Journey. We are so grateful to the donor who purchased them for the church, who wishes to remain anonymous. Thank you so much! In October, soloists included Phaedra Plank, Jessie Lambrecht, Bob Lehman and Dottie Thompson. Marcia Hempel played a Ragtime Organ concert on October 2, which had 35 people in attendance, and brought in $300 for the church. The Organ Crawl was held on the island on October 8, and Marcia played J.S. Bach and Denis Bedard. There were about 100 organ crawlers! Jack Reindel and Susie Jarrell were in charge of the Bob and Diane Lehman (Monday Noon) concerts. They were a great success!

This beautiful oil painting by Anne Sutherland entitled “Embedded Sanctuary,” which has been donated to the UU congregation by a group of members and friends, has been moved from its perch on an easel in the vestibule to what is being considered as its permanent location in the Activities Room.

Our special Music Sunday at Christmas time will be on December 18. We will hear solos by Phaedra Plank, Jessie Lambrecht, Amanda Torchia, and Leah Hull. The adult choir and the children’s choir will also sing. Don’t miss it! All month long there will be interesting services this December. The Children’s Choir is rehearsing on Saturdays at 2 p.m. (also called the Saturday choir). We have about seven children so far. We are singing lots of fun songs. We had a large group of children singing “Food, Glorious Food” on October 24 including some cast members from “Oliver.” The Adult Choir meets on Thursdays from 5:15 to 6:30 p.m. Join us!



With help from Amy Jenness, the film “Budrus” was shown at the Atheneum. Mary Geissman, a summer member, arranged for John Merson to speak at All Souls Unitarian Church in New York City on the UN’s International Day of Peace, September 22. John also spoke at an anti-war rally on October 7 in Times Square. This event was organized by Military Families Speak Out, Code Pink, Grannies Against the War, and several other groups. The Peace & Justice Committee is currently working on plans for an antiwar demonstration on or around Veterans’ Day.

Among the critters at the “Blessing of the Animals” service on October 16 were two lively hamsters from the Mogensen-Scott family.


(Photo by Bob Hall)

by Debby Merritt

Recently I was reading some of the old newsletters and correspondence from our Transylvanian partner church in Kolozs. We are lucky to have the opportunity to have this connection with fellow travelers in the 450 year history of Unitarianism. Ilse and Water Sangree are the only members of our congregation to have traveled to visit our partner church (in 2002). We had a visit in 2004 from the former minister of the church in Kolozs, Denes Farkas, when he delivered a sermon and presented us with a carved wood plaque with the Transylvanian symbol representing a dove and a serpent referring to the Biblical verse in Matthew 10:16, which says “…be wise as serpents and innocent as doves…” This year we again will have chance to meet with the new minister of the Kolozs congregation, David Gyero. He visited last year in June during the church picnic in the back garden. He will be here for the Hungarian dinner on Saturday, November 5th beginning at 5:30 p.m. and also will be a part of the “Stone Soup” service on Sunday, November 6th. Our partner church has been in the process of restoring their church and parsonage, as have we. All the money we raise during the Hungarian dinner is sent directly ~5~

to our partner church to aid them in this effort. Please plan on being at the Hungarian dinner and help us welcome David Gyero. To reserve your ticket at $25, please contact Kat Grieder at or Debby Merritt at cdmgm@ Members of the partner church committee are Debby Merritt, Bob Hall, Ilse Sangree, Kat Robinson Grieder, Suse Robinson, Karin Glockel, Les Ottinger, Joan Ottinger, Chris Lohmann and Pam Lohmann. The committee welcomes new members.

November Calendar of Services

Sunday, November 6 10:45 a.m. REMEMBER THAT DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME ENDS TODAY. “Celebration of Community” - Rev. David M. Horst (Hendrix Hall and Activities Room) Today we celebrate ourselves, Nantucket’s one and only liberal religious community. As we begin our fourth month of transition and renewal, we pause to take stock of our progress, recognize church volunteers, celebrate our children and youth, and wrap up the 2012 pledge campaign. Our Co-Directors of Religious Education, Lizie Hagenstein and Sally Ure, tell the much-loved story from Eastern Europe, Stone Soup, which perfectly dramatizes the wonder of religious community when everyone puts something into the soup pot. We welcome David Gyero, minister of our partner church in Transylvania, who participates in the story and speaks briefly about the Unitarian Church in Romania. Our children and youth prepare a pot of stone soup for everyone to share following the service. The adult choir will sing “Footprints.” Sunday, November 13 10:45 a.m. “Left, Right, and In-Between” - Rev. David M. Horst (Hendrix Hall and Activities Room) Our nation’s political and economic life is in turmoil once again -- worse than ever, some say. The Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street movements are the most visible signs of national strife, but the rifts among the nation’s electorate and political parties go much deeper. Conservative religious groups continue to dominate the current political discourse of intolerance, inequality, and injustice; and the voices of religious moderates and liberals are being drowned out once again. How do we make sense of this dismal state of affairs and, more importantly, what should be our response? The adult choir will sing “All Good Gifts,” with soloist Leah Hull. Sunday, November 20 10:45 a.m. “Giving Thanks” - Rev. David M. Horst (Hendrix Hall and Activities Room) The roots of Thanksgiving can be traced to ancient Israel, even though the Pilgrims and Native Americans get most of the credit! Thanksgiving has become a singular American holiday that draws people of all faiths and heritages together in the spirit of thankfulness for the blessings and struggles of life. Rev. Horst shares the classic story by Douglas Wood, The Secret of Giving Thanks, and reminds us in his sermon that moment-to-moment gratefulness is the way to lifetime satisfaction and happiness. During the service our children and youth will be canvassing Nantucket’s neighborhoods with the Wagon Train, our annual food collection to support the Nantucket Emergency Food Pantry. Please bring nonperishable food items for the food pantry. The adult choir will sing “Thanksgiving Song.” Sunday, November 27 10:45 a.m. “Gratitude Beyond Thanksgiving” – Fourth Sunday Lay-Led Service (Hendrix Hall and Activities Room) This morning we will reflect on Rev. Horst’s Thanksgiving sermon and explore ways to make gratitude an every day attitude. Gratitude can be a way of life, a spiritual practice and even a radical stance in the face of a consumer culture which tells us we need “more” in order to be happy. In some cultures gratitude is a central part of life. We will share stories about all we are grateful for and offer a reading of the Mohawk nations gratitude prayer which opened every tribal gathering. Come with something to share about gratitude in your life or just ready to hear the stories of others. Bring your grateful hearts and open minds. Jessie Lambrecht and Amanda Torchia will sing “Laudamus Te.” Organist for the service will be Barbara Elder. In addition to the regular Sunday morning services, “Evensong” Adult Religious Education Services are held beginning at 6 p.m. in Hendrix Hall each Monday night. “Evensong” Services for this month will be on November 7, 14, 21 and 28. For more information, contact the Church Office.




by Craig Spery, Board President

Recent actions taken by the board are as follows: - Received an outline from Reverend Horst that lists the plans for worship and religious education through January 2012. He brings forward some new ideas and programs that will make participating in church activities an exciting and rewarding experience for everyone. - The 2012 Pledge Campaign Kick Off Luncheon held on October 9 in the Activities Room was a big success with a healthy number of pledges collected at the event. Follow up calls are being made to members and friends and we encourage everyone to make a pledge to help bring liberal religious excellence to Nantucket. Pledge cards are available in Hendrix Hall and outside the church office - The board approved funding a membership in the Nantucket Chamber of Commerce for 2012. It should help bring attention to our presence on island and to our wedding program, in particular. - The ongoing advertising campaign promoting the church continues in the Inquirer and Mirror through the end of the year. The advertisement has been revised for easier reading. - Verizon Wireless exchanged their old generator at the rear of the church building for a newer, quieter and slightly larger unit. They still plan on upgrading their equipment in the church tower in the next few months. - Reverend Horst still hopes to get additional members to join the Welcoming Committee and to generally improve our procedures to make visitors feel welcome and encourage them to return. Contact him for additional information. Our church community has always relied heavily on volunteer participation. In the coming months, the need for volunteer participation will be very important. In particular, we’ll need four members to serve on the board of trustees and six to seven members to serve on the committee for the new settled minister. Please consider these positions and all the other volunteer opportunities available at the church. Your involvement makes a huge difference to the congregation and to the larger Nantucket community.


The Fourth Sunday lay-led service committee is seeking participants for the November 27 service after Thanksgiving. The service leader for November is Mary Beth Splaine and she needs eight volunteers who would like to be readers in the service entitled “Gratitude Beyond Thanksgiving.” Please contact her at


Time is running out to donate small items such as jewelry, holiday decorations, books, etc.--all in good condition--as well as baked goods and preserves for our church’s sales table at the Inter-Church Harvest Fair on Saturday, November 5. All proceeds from the sales will go toward support for the church’s operating budget and programs. Box up your items and bring them to the church activities room. For more information about how you can get involved to mark items or help with delivery and sales, contact Debby Merritt at 508-228-6540. The Fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the First Congregational Church at 62 Centre Street.

Second Congregational Meeting House Society 11 Orange St. ~ P.O. Box 1023 Nantucket, MA 02554




Second Congregational Meeting House Society Unitarian Universalist 11 Orange St. ~ P.O. Box 1023 Nantucket, MA 02554 (508) 228-5466 (Office)

Church Staff David M. Horst, Interim Minister ~ Edward B. Anderson, Minister Emeritus ~ Kim N. LaRue, Office Administrator and Receptionist ~ Marcia Hempel, Director of Music and Organist ~ Lizie Hagenstein and Sally Ure, Co-Directors of Religious Education ~ Mimi Jones and Dennis Santangelo, Sextons ~ Meghan Blair-Valero, Fogged-In Bookkeeping, Business Services Board of Trustees Craig Spery (President), Sissy Girard (Vice-President), Bob Hall (Clerk), Jack Weinhold (Treasurer) Bertrand I. Briere III, Larry Miller, David Hall, Joan Ottinger, Christine Sanford Church Office Hours Monday - Friday ~ 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Minister’s Office Hours Tuesday (10 a.m. - noon) and Friday (noon - 2 p.m.)

Weathervane, Nov 2011  
Weathervane, Nov 2011  

Newsletter of the Nantucket Unitarian Universalists.