May 242018
 
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The June First Friday Film at the Springfield UU,  The Mask You Live In follows boys and young men as they struggle to stay true to themselves while negotiating America’s limited definition of masculinity. Pressured by the media, their peer groups, and even the adults in their lives, our protagonists confront messages encouraging them to disconnect from their emotions, devalue authentic friendships, objectify women, and resolve conflicts through violence.

These gender stereotypes interconnect with race, class, and circumstance, creating a maze of identity issues boys and young men must navigate to become ‘real’ men. Experts in neuroscience, psychology, sociology, sports, education, and media also weigh in, offering empirical evidence of the ‘boy crisis’ and tactics to combat it.

The Mask You Live In ultimately illustrates how we, as a society, can raise a healthier generation of boys and young men.  This film is 90 minutes long.

Free admission, popcorn and beverages. All welcome.
Doors open at 6:45; film begins at 7 pm.

 

May 072018
 
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Tom’s songs have been recorded by Kris Kristofferson, Gene Watson, Bobby Bare, Mama Cass, Bobby Goldsboro, Michael Settle, Rita Coolidge, Charlie Louvin, and dozens of others. His classic, “Whiskey Whiskey” is considered a standard, and has been cut by a long list of performers in a variety of styles.

He’s played lead guitar for Mickey Newbury, appeared as a background vocalist on Joan Baez’ “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” and Steve Goodman’s “City Of New Orleans,” and his expertise in the studio is well known and respected among his industry peers. His performances have taken him from the coffeehouses of the Greenwich Village folk scene, to country honky tonks, The Philadelphia Folk Festival, Big Sur Folk Festival, Monterey Pop Festival, The Willie Nelson Picnic, The Hollywood Bowl, and numerous radio and television appearances. Tom also sang the title song on the soundtrack album for the Mick Jagger movie “Ned Kelly”, a soundtrack which also featured Kris Kristofferson, Waylon Jennings, and Jagger himself.
There is a five dollar suggested donation.
All Welcome. Doors open at 6:30, music starts at 7pm. This is a family-friendly evening of music and fun. You will be able to purchase delicious snacks and beverages.

May 072018
 

 

Creating a Listening Community:
Introduction to Restorative Circles Practice
Sunday, May 6, 11:30 to 1
Springfield Unitarian Universalist Congregation,
21 Fairground Road, Springfield, VT

In any group or organization, the differences between the participants can be cause for conflict or a fertile opportunity for growth, insight and synergy. Our ability to listen across our difference is the key. Listening is often more difficult when conflict arises between us. Come experience some of the ways we listen to “the other” when friction arises. In cultivating listening skills, communities are able to strengthened decision making processes and reduced conflict. The practice of reflective listening creates understanding and bring down the walls that keep us apart. Join us on this listening journey!
Workshop Leader: Sarah-Elizabeth’s life is focused on creating harmony, peace and beauty within individuals and in communities. She leads Restorative Circles Facilitator Trainings for communities across New England. Sarah-Elizabeth is a NH licensed massage therapist, with a private practice in Concord. Sarah-Elizabeth holds an AB degree from the University of Chicago, an MA degree in Education from Teacher’s College of Columbia University.

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May 062018
 
Free admission, popcorn and beverages.  All welcome.  Doors open at 6:45; film begins at 7 pm.      About the film:
“Every time history repeats itself the price goes up.”

Surviving Progress presents the story of human advancement as awe-inspiring and double-edged. It reveals the grave risk of running the 21st century’s software — our know-how — on the ancient hardware of our primate brain which hasn’t been upgraded in 50,000 years. With rich imagery and immersive soundtrack, filmmakers Mathieu Roy and Harold Crooks launch us on journey to contemplate our evolution from cave-dwellers to space explorers.

Ronald Wright, whose best-seller, “A Short History Of Progress” inspired this film, reveals how civilizations are repeatedly destroyed by “progress traps” — alluring technologies serve immediate needs, but ransom the future. .  . .

Includes commentary by Distinguished Professor of Environment Vaclav Smil,  primatologist Jane Goodall, author Margaret Atwood, and activists from the Congo, Canada, and USA.

Surviving Progress leaves us with a challenge: To prove that making apes smarter was not an evolutionary dead-end. (excerpts from  From http://survivingprogress.com   ) ALL WELCOME!

Apr 302018
 
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May 27: “Yoga At Every Stage of Life” with Aimee Parnell
Come check out how yoga and meditation can improve your health and well-being. We’ll demonstrate sequences that soothe ailments like low back pain, headaches, indigestion, menstrual cramps, hot flashes, and arthritis. Yoga can also enhance your health during and after pregnancy, help you to avoid osteoporosis, and reduce your stress levels. Little ones also benefit from yoga through exercising their emotional intelligence, keeping their bodies mobile and limber, and having special bonding time with you! Come discover how yoga can enhance your life, at any stage!


May 6 “Creating a Listening Community” with Sarah-Elizabeth Anderson and Rev. Mellen Kennedy  In any group or organization, the differences between the participants can be cause for conflict or a fertile opportunity for growth, insight and synergy.  Our ability to listen across our difference is the key.  We’ll learn about the powerful approach of creating Restorative Circles in communities to help navigate these kinds of challenges so that conflicts can be transformed and harmony can be restored.
Join us after the worship service for a workshop on “Creating a Listening Community: An Introduction to Restorative Circles,” which will be offered from 11:30 AM to 1 PM.  Sarah-Elizabeth Anderson is a Facilitator of Restorative Circles and former Chair of the Restorative Circles Facilitator Team at the UU Church of Concord, NH. She leads Restorative Circles Facilitator Trainings for communities across New England.

May 13: “Nurture” with Rev. Carol Allman-Morton. On Mother’s Day we honor those who mothered us throughout our lives. To nurture someone, is not only to love them, but to help them grow.  If we are lucky, many people will nurture us throughout our lives and care about us enough to help us figure out what is next. Rev. Carol Allman-Morton has been the minister at the Unitarian Universalist Meeting of South Berkshire, in Housatonic, Mass., since 2009. She is also the Director of Alumni Engagement at Amherst College (and the daughter of Ellen and Robert!).

May 20 “Initiate the Kids or They Burn Down the Village”  with Rev. Mellen Kennedy
Throughout human history, rites of passage for teens and young adults were understood to be necessary to help young people thrive. Unfortunately, this wisdom has been all but lost in our modern world.  Let’s learn what religious educators, psychologists and now neuroscientists can teach us about the spiritual, emotional, and mental unfolding of young people.  More importantly, let’s celebrate the opportunity that we as a community have to embrace and encourage youth and young adults.   The church is launching our own Coming of Age opportunity for early teens, where one of our youth is matched with an adult member of the congregation.  We’ll hear from our first mentor-mentee pair and we’ll learn how we can challenge ourselves to meet and support the kid today with where they are and what they’re facing. A Friends on the Path small group discussion on this topic will follow the coffee hour, facilitated by Rev. Mellen

Apr 252018
 
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  Dances of Universal Peace Return to Springfield

Sunday, May 20, 2 pm

Springfield UU Church, 21 Fairground Road

The DANCES OF UNIVERSAL PEACE (DUP) are simple, joyous, meditative, multicultural, circle dances that use sacred phrases, chants, music and movements to touch the spiritual essence within ourselves, and recognize it in others. These Dances are based on teachings embraced by Universal Sufism. No musical or dance experience of any kind is required, and everyone is welcomed to join in. The DANCES focus on PEACE, creating a sense of solidarity and community, while celebrating the underlying unity of all the spiritual traditions of the earth.

COME AND BE A PART OF THE CIRCLE THAT CONNECTS ALL OF HUMANITY!
Apr 082018
 
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The April UU Coffeehouse in Springfield will feature Woodchuck’s Revenge with Kristina Cady on Saturday the 21st.
Formed in front of the fire on a winter’s night in 1990, Woodchucks’ Revenge brings together as a performing group three friends who have combined their lifelong love of music to offer their audiences an eclectic and refreshing mix of traditional and contemporary folksongs played with spirit and an old time country sensibility.

The Woodchucks’ repertoire, which has been described as encyclopedic, ranges from New England fiddle tunes to modern cowboy songs, from Irish ballads to 60’s folk, blues and bluegrass. Songs about Vermont, mountains, and life in New England are staple of the group’s performances, along with a healthy dose of humor and a small but growing number of originals.

The Woodchucks have performed throughout Vermont and the adjoining states and in Wyoming and Montana… at colleges and community events and festivals, in coffehouses and summer concert series, country fairs and bluegrass festivals as well as the New England Folk Festival (NEFFA), and the Northeast Music, Arts and Dance Festival (NOMAD). They have performed on Public Radio in Vermont and New York, as well as local access television. Their audiences have included students, seniors, visitors to Vermont, historical reenactors, and folk music fans of all ages.

Held at 21 Fairground Rd, Springfield, VT. Doors open at 6:30, music starts at 7.   This is a family-friendly evening of music and fun. There is no cost to enjoy the music, but there is a “free-will” offering and any money collected goes directly to support the featured performers..  You will be able to purchase delicious snacks and beverages.

All welcome.  Join us for a fun evening of great music!

Mar 242018
 
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This is the story of nine girls from nine different countries striving beyond poverty and challenging life circumstances to educate themselves.  In the process  they transform themselves, their families, their communities and the world.   Educate Girls and change the world! Released in 2014 on DVD.

Meryl Streep, one of the narrators of the film, says of it:  “this film delivers hope: reasonable, measureable, tangible hope that the world can be healed and helped to a better future.”

This is a free showing. We will start the film at 7 pm. (103 minutes long)  Doors open at 6:45,  popcorn and beverages included. All welcome! (Rescheduled from March 2nd.)

Mar 242018
 
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April 1st “Vermont Easter: A Celebration of a State of Optimism” with Rev. Mellen Kennedy,

A recent survey revealed that Vermonters are twice as optimistic as folks in other states in the union. Let’s celebrate what brings us hope and joy as we move into Spring.  Special music by the choir.  The children will be performing the Vermont State Song, These Green Hills.
There will be an Easter Egg Hunt for Parents and Children following the service with a chance for parents to chat with Rev. Mellen about upcoming Religious Education Possibilities for our children!
All welcome.  Held at 21 Fairground Rd, Springfield, VT.

April 8, “Random Acts of Kindness” with Sharon Mueller and Tina Feindel

Are you a practitioner of Random Acts of Kindness? Have you ever spontaneously helped out, picked up, paid it forward? Cultivating such an attitude can leverage our positive thoughts into a kinder, gentler world. We will share some of our experiences and ideas, and would love to hear yours.

April 15: (Postponed due to weather.) “The Hidden Life of Trees” with JoAnn Gaffron-Hargrove.  Trees, trees, trees!  They are everywhere!  We admire their beauty and majesty.  They give us shelter, shade from the hot sun and help clean the air we breathe. But there is something mysterious about trees: Do they have feelings? Do they communicate? Do they have a life we know nothing about?  Let us explore the hidden life of trees.

April 22: “Earth Day Celebration”  with Rev. Mellen Kennedy.  Got hope? Come get some!
Since the United Nations created Earth Day nearly 50 years ago, the environmental crises have escalated to a level that can appear catastrophic. Yet we need not despair! All around the globe, people are engaging in so many powerful ideas and programs that are setting our planet on a hopeful course. In this lively celebration, we’ll lift up signs of progress, resistance, and success. Collectively we humans are reversing the damage in myriad ways from planting pollinator gardens, composting, constructing net zero buildings, installing alternative energy, educating girls, planting trees, and so much more.

We’ll playfully cultivate our awareness of how to live sustainably, justly and peacefully on the Earth.  Special music will include piano pieces by Tina Wood and a choral performance of “Turn the World Around,” composed by Harry Belafonte.   Drummer Jim Yeager and musician Matt Meserve will perform. We’ll also be launching our new pollinator garden. Open to the public.  Bring friends!

Souper Sunday from 11-12 (bring a guest – no charge for newcomers), and Interactive Earth Day Displays from 12-1.

April 29:  “Finding Common Ground” led by Rev. Telos Whitfield. We look to leaders in our history, poets and activists for inspiration and guidance, and explore the guiding principles they lived by that gave them courage and inspiration. Looking to the common ground we share, what do we want to know about each other that will move us to care, and act as agents of change in the world?