AuctionThank you for making the Wild West Rodeo Auction on Saturday, November 3 a huge success! This year, our event followed on the heels of Superstorm Sandy, which proved devastating to many of our members, friends, and neighbors and their extended families. Despite the calamity, auction attendees proved unflappable, as well as generous, in their bidding.

Live music provided by Meadowlark soothed the crowd. Ten and five gallon hats circled the chuck wagons, where food donations were greeted with great acclaim. Our OK Corral Saloon served sarsaparilla, sparking cowhands to rope their favorites in the main arena.

The Roses, Joanne and Ron, our Rodeo auctioneers, delighted the audience with IMAX images of your donations, while singing, playing guitar, and tickling us silly to pump up the bids. The children’s cow party was a rootin’ tootin’ hootenanny. Pizza, games, film, and craft-making led to their annual surprise donation: an adorned hobby horse. Wow! It paid off. Costume prizes, raffle baskets, and 50-50 winners rode off into the sunset.   

With your generosity, our church raised $34,000! We should all feel proud of our combined efforts in making the auction a huge success. Thank you for your contributions. Best wishes and see you next year!

Gene Ramsbottom,
Auction Committee Chair

Auction Committee: Cindy Arnold-Cohen, Carolyn Ballinger, Sue Compton, Sally-Ann Fritzson, Sandy Gargus, Alyssa and Michael Metz-Topodas, Joanne and Ron Rose, and Scott Turner.

On Sunday, October 21, nineteen youth members of Main Line Unitarian Church participated in AIDS Walk Philly, continuing the youth groups’ commitment to raising awareness about HIV and AIDS. Members of the church’s Young Religious Unitarian Universalists and Junior Youth Group, ranging from grades 7–12, raised $2,608 while walking twelve kilometers through Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park system.

Rachael Milles, President of Young Religious Unitarian Universalists, when asked what participating in AIDS Walk Philly meant to her, answered simply, “I walked because part of being human is making the world a better place for others.”

The leading fundraisers for this year’s MLUC team were Kaitlin Hatch, Tyler McDowell, and Julia McDowell. Special thanks also go to the church members who made donations to support the team as a whole.

Sam Wilson, an adult leader of YRUU, brought a little levity to the walk by dressing up as a fierce lion, but was quite serious when he reflected on the depth of understanding shown by the youth who walked.

“It was clear that these youth were keenly aware of why they were participating in this walk.” Wilson said. “They had obviously spent time on their own reflecting on the significance of this walk for them. These young UUs are a constant inspiration and source of confirmation that we are doing something right!”

AIDS Walk Philly is presented each year by the AIDS Fund, which works with 30 partner organizations throughout the Greater Philadelphia Area to provide critical HIV prevention education and care services. Their philosophy is centered on the idea that working together is the best way to fight against this disease, and thousands of volunteers mobilize each year. To learn more, visit www.aidswalkphilly.org.

Main Line QuiltersThroughout the month of November, an exquisite collection of quilts is on display in the Fireside Room of MLUC. This exhibit will be expanded on Saturday, November 17, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., as the Main Line Quilters Guild presents "A Quilter’s Perspective: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow." The show will feature quilting demonstrations and a boutique of handmade quilts. Light refreshments will be for sale, and there is a small entrance fee of $5.00. The event is sponsored by Steve's Sewing Vacuum and Quilting in King of Prussia.

The Main Line Quilters Guild was founded in 1975, and is a member of the National Quilting Association. With 40 members, the guild is diverse, and includes people of all levels and interest. They offer many programs and workshops throughout the year. Join us at MLUC to learn practical skills and fun facts like why some quilters have long arms! Visit the guild online at www.mainlinequilters.org.

MLUCSocialJusticeAwardMembers at Main Line Unitarian Church (MLUC) were thrilled to receive the news that the church had won the Congregational Social Justice Award from the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC). The award recognizes a church’s overall institutional efforts to advance human rights work, and was presented at the General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association in Phoenix, Arizona.

Rev. Dr. William Schulz, President of the UUSC, praised MLUC’s efforts to raise money and awareness for social justice issues at the local, national, and international level. He said,

“In addition to their phenomenal support of UUSC’s Guest at Your Table program, Main Line frequently conducts collections for emergency appeals such as the Somalia and East Africa Famine Relief Fund. Main Line was also one of the first congregations to form its own delegation for a JustWorks service learning trip, which involved a week building an eco-village in Haiti and hosting a Symposium for Haitian Service after their return. Main Line’s impressive efforts raised more than $50,000 for UUSC in fiscal year 2012. But more importantly, Main Line’s deeper connection with UUSC and their broad outreach merit the Social Justice Congregation Award.”

Rev. Morgan McLean, Associate Minister at MLUC and leader of this year’s General Assembly delegation, was proud and happy that the church’s efforts were recognized by the UUSC. More than 50 percent of MLUC members are active in UUSC.

“As Unitarian Universalists,” McLean stated, “we believe in the inherent worth and dignity of every person, and our social action programs allow us to put our faith into practice. I am so proud of our congregation for their commitment to justice at home and around the world.”

Main Line Unitarian Church is hosting a Social Action Fair on Friday, September 21 that leads into a CD Release Concert from activist songwriters emma’s revolution. The fair is free and open to the public, and will feature opportunities to learn about and get involved in the variety of social action programs at the church, addressing issues such as reproductive justice, immigration rights, LGBT rights, environmental justice, voting rights, and more. Tickets for the emma’s revolution concert can be purchased online at www.emmasrevolution.com/live.

The social action program at MLUC has recently been restructured to be more comprehensive, encompassing information on the many annual, semi-annual, or one-time service events and educational programs offered by the church. The Social Action Leadership Team includes representatives from each committee or group that has organized outreach events in the past, and makes it easier to point visitors and new members in the right direction to meet their desire to serve. To learn more about social action at MLUC, visit www.mluc.org/social-action.

Photo: Members of Main Line Unitarian Church are presented with the Congregational Social Justice Award at the Unitarian Universalist Association’s General Assembly in Phoenix, Arizona, in June 2012. From left: church members Hiro Nishikawa, Rob Williams, Grace Williams, Rev. Morgan R. McLean, UUSC President Rev. Dr. William F. Schulz, Catharine Williams, Rachael Milles, Susan Milles, and Sam Wilson.

familysupportlinewebRecently, Patricia Kosinski, Executive Director of Family Support Line, visited Main Line Unitarian Church (MLUC) to lead a forum on sexual abuse for church members and friends. In her presentation, she provided training on the responsibility of individuals and institutions to report sexual abuse of any kind, but especially sexual abuse of children. In the wake of public child abuse scandals like that at Penn State University, organizations like Family Support Line are integral in educating individuals and preventing children from being abused.

Family Support Line, located in Media, PA, began in 1984 as a group of social service professionals and private citizens concerned about child sexual abuse, and quickly grew into an incorporated organization focused on providing specialized treatment for children and their families. They also develop educational seminars that provide a comprehensive approach to the prevention and early detection of child sexual abuse.

Members of the MLUC congregation were glad for the opportunity to learn more about preventive practices and early warning signs of child abuse during Kosinski’s presentation. Pat explained to them the phenomenon of “bystander effect,” in which otherwise responsible adults neglect to report abuse when they have implicit or explicit knowledge of it.

Family Support Line shares MLUC’s core values, including the belief that all people are inherently dignified. The church named the organization as the recipient for their Offering Outreach program in the month of February, which donates half of the monthly collection to a local non-profit. Kosinski happily accepted a donation check for $2,103.

She said of the donation, “This much-appreciated support from Main Line Unitarian Church will allow Family Support Line to offer our services at a free or reduced cost. We have therapists specially trained to work with the trauma of child sexual abuse, and we provide prevention seminars for parents and children in schools and the community. In 2011, our efforts reached nearly 10,000 people.”

For more information on Family Support Line, including how to get involved, visit www.familysupportline.org. To read more about Main Line Unitarian Church’s Offering Outreach program, visit www.mluc.org/social-action/offering-outreach.