First Congregational Church of Lee, 25 Park Place, Lee, MA
Berkshire Association, UCC Fall Gathering 2017
“What was once a reason for rupture and alienation becomes an opportunity for repair and greater intimacy. A life that seemed littered with obstacles and antagonism is suddenly filled with opportunity and love” (Desmond and Mpho Tutu, The Book of Forgiving).
This special event is for church members, friends, clergy, and laity.
Dismantling Racism: Building Capacity for White People to Understand Racial Injustice
There is one remaining session after August 19 (“Allies in resisting racism and white supremacy”), but you need not have attended any of the previous workshops to come to the final workshop in the “Cracking the Shell of Whiteness” series being held at QIV-C. Taken from a proven curriculum to build the capacity for white people to be in solidarity with people of color, this series creates space for white people interested in being effective allies with people of color in the work of dismantling racism and undoing white privilege. The workshops are free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. For more information, see www.qivc.org.
Final session: September 16—“Creating action plans for the future”
Many thanks to Daniel Zuckerman and Columbia-Greene Media for attending the first Interfaith Celebration of the Earth and Jazz Worship Service at Canaan Congregational Church. Participants were led in meditation and prayer, with the music of saxophonist Willie Sordillo, pianist Chris Bakriges, bassist Avery Sharpe, and vocalist Zoë Krohne holding all together. Read the entire article at http://www.registerstar.com/news/article_54d663fc-28a4-11e7-b29c-9f88b1356f1b.html.
Dismantling Racism: Building Capacity for White People to Understand Racial Injustice (Racism Series at the Quaker Intentional Village–Canaan)
The first workshop—Identifying Whiteness—was held Saturday, April 15, 2017. This was the first of six monthly workshops from a proven curriculum to build the capacity for white people to be in solidarity with people of color. This curriculum was developed to create a space for white people interested in being effective allies with people of color in the work of dismantling racism and undoing white privilege.
The workshops are free and open to the public. It is not necessary to attend every workshop in the series. Refreshments will be served. RSVPs are requested but not required. For more information call 518-392-0289 and ask for Noah. The series is held at 235 Bradley’s Crossing Road, East Chatham, NY 12060.
Called Cracking the Shell of Whiteness, the next sessions include:
May 20—“Socialized into Whiteness”
June 10—“Where and When We Come From”
July 8—“The Legacy of White Privilege”
August 19—“Allies in Resisting Racism and White Supremacy”
September 16—“Creating Action Plans for the Future”
Featuring Saxophonist Willie Sordillo and his jazz trio, Chris Bakriges, Zoë Krohne, and Avery Sharpe
3:00 PM, Sunday, April 23, 2017
From such exotic locales as Singapore and Hawaii to major music festivals throughout North America, alto saxophonist Willie Sordillo’s music has taken him around the world. With the band, Flor de Caña, he is a three-time Boston Music Award winner. An album he produced became a top 10 hit on the Billboard Magazine, World Music listing, and one of his co-arrangements played on the ER television program. A writer as well as a player, Willie’s original compositions have been reproduced in a number of magazines, songbooks, and textbooks.
Celebrate the natural world with several faith communities, including Muslims, Buddhists, and Christians; rich jazz; and sage readings.
Sordillo has composed theme music for four movies, including the award-winning documentary, Project Censored. Recordings featuring his saxophone work include Muévete and Bailando en la muralla by Flor de Caña, Cartagena, with the Geoffrey Hicks Quartet, Besame Mucho, a duo session with Geoffrey Hicks, The Color of Grace and The Colors of Love by Judy Hanlon, and Ben Tousley’s recordings Open the Gates and Take My Hand. His acoustic guitar playing is featured on all of banjoist Pat Scanlon’s recordings, including his newly released double CD, Extremists for Peace. Willie’s most recent CD as a leader, echoing, features some of the Boston area’s finest jazz musicians. Willie leads weekly jazz services at Old South Church in Boston. The Canaan Congregational Church is proud and pleased to host this unique and insightful performer and musician.
Nadia Bolz-Weber’s book, Accidental Saints: Finding God in All the Wrong People, is an engaging, funny, and inspiring read. It’s just what many of us need right now when the temptation to separate ourselves from people we don’t agree with or don’t like is so strong.
“What if that person you’ve been trying to avoid is your best shot at grace today? And what if that’s the point?”
Bolz-Weber is a Lutheran pastor of a church she founded, the House for All Sinners and Saints in Denver. She also is a tattooed former stand-up comic who swears a lot. She is open about her own struggles and foibles and finds healing when she is known and loved anyway. She has to force herself to reach out to people she doesn’t like or who make her angry or who she just doesn’t understand, but finds grace when she does. She believes that Jesus loves us for who we are, including our “uncool parts,” and reminds us that Jesus was a radical who hung out with people scorned by the society of his day.
Bolz-Weber writes of the need for church to be a place where we can face the realities of our world together, not escape them. Church, and religion in general, give us “rootedness.” She writes, “When I say I’m religious, it has to do less with belief than with what I’m exposed to on a regular basis, what my symbol system is, what my practice is in terms of being a Christian in a community . . . (and these) help us to know how to hold the tragedy, violence and suffering we experience in the world and in our lives.”
Saturday, December 24 at 7:30 p.m., a Family Candlelight Service
Christmas Eve will be celebrated with lessons and carols on Saturday, December 24, at the Canaan Congregational Church. The 7:30 p.m. service, led by Rev. Dr. Charles Close, includes familiar Christmas readings, interspersed with traditional carols and special music by the choir. The final hymn will be sung in a sanctuary lit only by candles held by each participant.
December 25, 2016: No service on Christmas Day
January 1, 2017: New Year’s Day special service to welcome in the New Year with Holy Communion
The Living Roots Trio will perform live in concert at the Canaan Congregational Church on Saturday, October 1 at 4:00 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door. Light refreshments and cash wine bar. The band will have CDs and t-shirts for sale.
The Living Roots Trio “predominantly ply a quiet, subtle British-style folk, delicate, ringing guitar picking a la Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, Nick Drake, which quickly breaks into an American jazz-inflected swing blues, [which] is pure ’20s class. Meaghan Witri’s vocal harmony brings a lovely light to the proceedings, ringing out clear as a bronze bell over the smooth burr of Séamus Maynard’s cello[-like] tenor. …They bring an airy, graceful gentility to the folk gathering that is particularly, stunningly beautiful” (No Division blog).
Founded by singer-songwriter Maynard and vocalist Witri, the band is recently joined by versatile jazz bassist John Merritt. Maynard, originally from Harlemville, NY, studied classical guitar, composition, and acting. He has been performing as a musician and actor since his teens. Witri is originally from Chestnut Ridge, NY, and is an actress, singer, and musician. In addition to professional work in plays and film, Witri tours internationally as a soprano soloist performing in cathedrals and sacred spaces.
After releasing their album To All Things in January 2016, The Living Roots Trio has shared its music with festivals and venues across the country and overseas. For more information about the band, see their website at http://thelivingrootstrio.com/.