Harvey and Irma Recovery and Relief

unnamedThe last two weeks have seen two devastating and record-breaking hurricanes hit the United States. One was the wettest tropical hurricane ever recorded over the continental states, and the other was arguably the most intense Atlantic hurricane ever recorded in terms of sustained wind speed.

You can help: the UUSC and UUA have set up joint recovery and relief funds, and the UU College of Social Justice is collecting info on those who would like to volunteer to help with recovery efforts. Half of all funds raised will go to at-risk populations served by UUSC partners and half will support UU congregations and members most affected. Take action (clicking through leads to both Harvey and Irma funds).


The Interdependent Web

imageOn June 18, 10:30 AM, Sunday begins with a Summer Solstice-themed service led by Libby Earle. The service will be followed by a potluck lunch around 11:30 AM.

Then at 2:00-4:00 PM there will be a public screening of the National Geographic / Interfaith Power and Light documentary film “From the Ashes, Sponsored by the Social Justice Committee, HUUC.

Both events are located at the Hopedale Unitarian Universal Community, 3870 Oxford Millville Rd, Oxford, OH.

Social Justice Sundays, June and July

June and July 2017 Services

For the seventh summer in a row, Hopedale’s Social Justice Committee is planning June and July Sunday services. Our format is a little less formal than usual, and we’ll be changing things up from week to week, including three field trips. But the focus is always on the integration of Hopedale’s appreciation of the seasons as they intersect with social justice agendas and local opportunities.

This summer, we are focusing on both getting to know each other better, experiencing our local activities and interests, while also connecting with larger UUA agendas. Our first service will familiarize us with the UUA’s 2014-2018 Congregational Study/Action Issue, Escalating Inequality, and the 2016-2020 Congregational Study/Action Issue, The Corruption of Our Democracy. On June 4, we will kick off our reading of J.D. Vance’s Hillbilly Elegy. Elegy is the reading book for Miami University’s first-year reading program, and Vance may be on campus for a talk in the fall. The book has gotten mixed reviews, and since Vance is writing about life in Middletown, a conversation about his family’s story and Escalating Inequality will be engaging. We will also put democracy into action by voting on candidates for the next President of the Unitarian Universalist Association—Patty Klingenberg and Genevieve O’Malley Knight will be our representatives to the UUA’s General Assembly in New Orleans at the end of June, and we’d like to give them input about how to vote.

  • June 4- Congregational Study/Action Issue: Escalating Inequality. Kickoff of reading Hillbilly Elegy. Congregational Study/Action Issue: The Corruption of Our Democracy. Congregational democracy in action—vote on candidates for next UUA President. Service leaders: Ann Fuehrer and Patty Klingenberg         
  • June 11- Field trip & Celebration to wrap up spring adult RE program, “Hungry for Change”: Tour MOON Co-op Market, purchase picnic, tour of Linda Amspaugh’s garden at 4983 Stillwell Rd, Oxford, picnic. Coordinator: Ann Fuehrer
  • June 18- Summer solstice service. Service leader: Libby Earle
  • June 25, 10:00 am- View broadcast of GA worship service. Host: Genevieve O’Malley Knight
  • July 2- Field trip: Tour Don Isaac’s nursery 108 Pierce Street, Liberty, IN. Finish with lunch at El Reparo, also in Liberty
  • July 9- Discuss first third Hillbilly Elegy;
  • July 16- Discuss second third Hillbilly Elegy
  • July 23- Field trip: Freedom Summer memorial, Western campus with Ann Elizabeth Armstrong
  • July 30- Discuss last third Hillbilly Elegy; View Appalshop film “Strangers and Kin” with Curt Ellison

Stand with Standing Rock

standing-rockWe are overwhelmed with political circus and lose sight of the real struggles in the world. Right now we are witnessing (thanks mostly to social media) a brutal militarized police response to the Water Protectors in North Dakota. We must not dismiss them as mere ‘protestors’ for they are attempting at great personal risk to protect our most precious resource: water. We must speak out against corporate greed that threatens our democracy and the planet.

The Social Justice Committee, standing on the side of love for the rights of indigenous peoples and the environment, has made a donation of $200 to the Standing Rock Camp fund at Go Fund Me http://sacredstonecamp.org/supply-list/. Please consider making a personal donation to the camp fund or legal fund. – Libby Earle, Social Justice Committee

Atmospheric CO2

mauna-loa-observatory-0315Did you know that pollutants from oil and gas production include Methane (which is 87 times more powerful as a contributor to global warming than carbon in the atmosphere and also include major health risk toxins such as formaldehyde, benzene, acetaldehyde, and ethyl benzene?

The threat is in our backyard: ¼ of all Americans living within the ½ mile threat radius of oil and gas production pollutants live in Ohio and Ohio ranks 10th nationally in total population living within threat zones.

Follow this link to an interactive map by Earthworks , the Oil and Gas Threat Map, to learn more.

Here are other very informative links on oil and gas threats.

Social Justice Committee Update

Social Justice Committee Update for September, 2016

Summer Sunday Services arranged by Ann Fuehrer were a wonderful way to keep us engaged in and nourished by community. Many thanks.

Our attempt at supplying the Oxford Pantry with green beans reminds me of some recent reading I have been doing on the Irish Potato Famine, an Gorta Mo’r. Apparently we succumbed not only to the bunnies, but generally to a bad year for beans. Thankfully our crop failure did not have such dire consequences. We will be re-examining the role of Hopedale’s community garden.


Funding for the Lummi Nation (a UUA supported project) was successful and the totem pole is on its way! The 2016 Totem Pole Journey will travel from Bellingham, WA to Winnipeg, MB to bring attention to the threats of proposed fossil fuel projects. Follow its progress on Facebook. To learn more go to http://www.totempolejourney.com/.

Earthkeeping Summit on September 24th, 2016 10 AM – 5PM: Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center on the Ohio State University Campus, 2201 Fred Taylor Dr., Columbus, OH 43210. Please note the following outstanding event being sponsored by Ohio Interfaith Power and Light.

Plenary keynote message will be offered by Dr. Melanie Harris, leading scholar and teacher on African American Religion and Environmental Justice. A Panel Presentation and Workshops will cover engaging topics such as: water, rural, urban, and health eco-justice issues; Faith-based story-telling for social change; food security, advocacy opportunities; building a community of solar supporters; art as ritual and resistance and climate change and working as allies with communities of color.  Discover how we can work together, with hope, for climate and social justice!

Contact Ann Fuehrer if you are interested and register on line: http://www.ohipl.org/earthkeeping-summit-2016-2/


CINCINNATI Pride Events on Saturday, 6/25

Cincinnati Pride Parade – 11am

The parade steps off at 11am. The Parade will start at the intersection of 7th Street and Central Avenue, follow 7th Street to the intersection at Vine Street, then follow Vine Street past Fountain Square and around The Banks on 2nd/Main, before continuing onto Freedom Way and down to the festival grounds at Sawyer Point/Yeatman’s Cove.

Cincinnati Pride Festival – Noon

The Festival begins at noon. The family fun zone returns to Yeatman’s Cove with new and fun adventures for kids of all ages. New venders and tasty food options and the first ever Cincinnati Pride Beer Garden!

Interfaith PRIDE Service

Rainbow FlagThe annual Cincinnati Pride 2016 Interfaith Service OFFICIAL will be held on Thursday, June 23rd at 7PM at Truth and Destiny Covenant Ministries Fellowship UCC located at 2645 W. North Bend Road, Cincinnati, OH 45239. This special event celebrates the blessings our LGBTQA brothers and sisters bring to our community. Free admission and everyone is welcome.‬

There are many exciting events taking place during Pride Week. Visit http://www.cincinnatipride.org to see the latest list of events.

Meet Up 4 Justice Workshop

Russ Vie Brooks and Libby Earle represented Hopedale at the Meet Up 4 Justice workshop at St. John’s UU in Cincinnati April 9, 2016. Three local activists shared their current work. Troy Jackson of the AMOS Project frames his activism from a faith perspective:” being prophets of the resistance by confronting the Principalities of Power—those people in positions of power who refuse to see and acknowledge the people who are suffering.  Currently the AMOS projects include (1) proposing Universal Preschool (any property tax should fund families at 200% o f poverty and provide living wages to workers), (2) addressing racial disparities in the juvenile justice system where a disproportionate number of AA youth are held to trial, (3) registering new voters, and (4) retroactively reducing non violent felony drug convictions to misdemeanors.

Pastor Ennis Tait from the Church of the Living God discussed the importance of outreach at the street level to address violence.  Project Ceasefire has been successful in teaching conflict resolution in three schools, but Cincinnati is reluctant to provide funding long term to interventions.

Stephen Johnson-Grove presented OJPC ‘s efforts to impact policy by framing reform in terms of promoting the health of the community and police officers.

The workshop focused on Cincinnati, but could provide some direction for Butler County.