The Match-1/23/19

30 January 2019



    Join Us In Worship!

Our upper school youth need to attend service. There, I just said it out loud, plain as day. As a RE team, we've built in several Sundays throughout the year for our youth to attend. You may have noticed on announcements or on the bulletin board the phrase, "Please join your families in service."  This isn't an accident. And it's also not because there's nothing planned that day. Setting aside one(ish) service a month for our upper school youth, and saying out loud that upper school youth in service is welcome and valued, is an intentional shift in our thinking at First Church. 

Our goal in RE is not to keep the youth "busy." Our goal is to foster a community that learns, grows, and develops a spiritual life. Attending worship is one way we as a community do this! Our youth should have the opportunity to sit in service to hear the choir. They can take a quiet minute of mediation with Rev. Monica. They should listen to Rev. Tom preach on the idea of a just world.  There is space for religious education classes and worship. It's not one or the other. 

We cannot expect our youth to want to continue to be lifelong UU's if they have no connection with the larger community. We cannot expect them to lead worship services such as Coming of Age and High School services if they never get to see a worship service. Bring your youth with you into service. Stand with them as we sing. Go to brunch to discuss the sermon. The youth at First Church are intellectual, curious, and engaging. I cannot wait to ask them what they think.

In Peace,
Amanda Esko
Director of Religious Education 

Family Fun Night returns February 4th at 6:15 pm! (Note that we're trying 6:15 pm again!) We'll be joined by Rev. Monica Dobbins.

"So, yeah, we go to church on Sunday. But it's not like regular church, and the people are great, and I love the youth programs. And summers are off, but amazing speakers from the community come in. It's just not CHURCH church." Raise your hand if you have had this conversation! How do we, as UU's, speak about our faith to others in a way that feels authentic? Rev. Monica will help facilitate this conversation so we can all be a little more eloquent in expressing our faith.

While the adults are busy talking, the youth will be working with Lissa Lander on an art project!

The Utah State Board of Education(USBE) is taking public input on new Health Standards for public schools. You can read the proposed standards here: 
Draft Standards 

Interest groups are pressuring USBE to remove the language defining anatomy with anatomical terms. USBE takes public input seriously on these issues. If you feel inclined, please fill out their survey on the proposed standards:
We need you to sign up to volunteer in your child's classrooms! We ask that all families participate throughout the year in their children's classrooms. Signup today!
Kindergarten-2nd grade OWL begins THIS SUNDAY, JANUARY 27th! Have you registered yet? 
 Please register now! K-2nd OWL Registration
Class Fees- Class fees can be made online here.
  Payments can also be taken in the main church office on Sundays. First Church is committed to all youth participating, regardless of financial capacity. Scholarships and reductions are available by contacting Amanda Esko at or 801-582-8687 ext 206.
UU of The Week
     Meet Francis Ellen Watkins Harper(1825-1911), our UU of the week! Francis Harper was an African American abolitionist, writer, lecturer, and activist who promoted civil rights, women's rights, and temperance. She was a popular speaker and traveled across the United States before the Civil War.  Harper's short story, "The Two Offers", was the first short story to be published by an African American author. Most of the earnings from her writing went to help free slaves with her work on the Underground Railroad. 
     After the Civil War, Harper focused her efforts on the rights of women, working with Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. In contrast to Anthony and Stanton however, Harper supported the immediate passage of the 14th and 15th amendments to the constitution. The immediate threats of violence to people of color, and the promise of legal protections these amendments offered, swayed her to support the passage of these amendments before voting rights for women. 
   Harper split her spiritual life between her two faiths, the AME church of her youth, and the Unitarian Church. The AME church provided her community, while her Christology and political leanings lead her to the Unitarian Church. Francis Ellen Watkins Harper died on February 22, 1911. Her funeral was at the Unitarian Church on Chestnut Street in Philadelphia. 

Sandwich Sunday is right around the corner! If you're able, signup to bring something OR take the lunches to the VOA!
We're looking for a few more Chalice Lighting Families to round out the rest of the year! Interested? Go to the signup to find a date that works for your family!
RE Calendar
January 27- 6th/7th Grade Visit Calvary Baptist
                    K-2nd OWL Begins
Feb. 3-  Sanctuary Sunday
              Sandwich Sunday
              Jr Choir Sings
Feb. 4- Family Fun Night
Feb. 17- Lower School- Mindfulness Matters
              Upper School- Join family in worship