Dear Ones,

Last week many of us experienced a renewal of faith in our criminal justice system at the conviction of Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd. But, since that conviction, more Black people have lost their lives in interactions with law enforcement officers.  And the most recent news is that the Federal Bureau of Investigation is looking at the death of Anthony Brown, Jr., who was shot five times by police in Elizabeth City, NC while they were trying to execute a search warrant.  Tomorrow, April 29th, marks the twenty-ninth anniversary of the acquittal of four Los Angeles police officers who savagely beat Rodney King.  We should be farther along than this, but as Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr said, “the more things change, the more they stay the same.”
But we must do what we can to make sure that they do not stay the same. Our nation’s history and recent events make it clear how important it is for everyone to engage in anti-racism work, and to hold the feet of others to the fire to get them to do the same.  This is truly holy work.  And it is work that we here at CVUU are called to do as Unitarian Universalists, especially as Unitarian Universalists who have adopted the Eight Principle which calls upon us to journey toward spiritual wholeness by working to build a diverse multicultural Beloved Community by our actions that accountably dismantle racism and other oppressions in ourselves and our institutions.
Thank you to everyone who participated in the Earth Day Family Clean Up this past Saturday. And thank you to our Director of Religious Education Paul Greggs and our Youth Program Coordinator Rayven Holmes for putting it together.  It is good that we are having events on the campus that will allow us to be with each other, but in safe ways.  If your group or committee is interested in having an event in one of our beautifully tended outdoor areas, send an email to our Church Administrator, Susie Gullixson, and she will send you an application.  Once it is approved by the Board, you can put it on the calendar. We know that outside is the safest place to be when we are gathering in groups. It is wonderful that our Board and Reopening Task Force have worked together to put in place a process to evaluate events that can bring us together.
The Theme Reflection for May is Story.  It will be held on Tuesday, June 1st at 6 p.m.  If you would like to participate, please register with me by sending me an email no later than May 31st.
For those of you who would like to help out with our virtual worship services and other online events, on Saturday, May 8th at 9 a.m., we will be having a tech training and workshop.  Come and learn how we do it and stay for the rehearsal which will be immediately afterward so that you can see how we do it, too! If you are interested, contact Tracy Brune at comm-coordinator@c-vuu.org.
We still have a few more days left of the Stewardship Campaign, which ends this month. If you have not already pledged, please go to this link: https://tinyurl.com/CVUU-Pledge.  Your participation in the financial vitality of this congregation is crucial.

My Check-In and Chat will be held on Thursday at 11 a.m. in Zoom. Click here to join or enter the Zoom meeting information (Meeting ID: 870 1011 9918 and Passcode: 4430).
This week I will close with the song “Glory” by Common and John Legend, from the movie, “Selma.”

In peace and love,
Rev. Viola

Rev. Viola Abbitt
Pronouns: she/her/hers

To schedule, an appointment goes to https://calendly.com/viola-abbitt.