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Northwoods Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

A Beacon of Light in the Northwoods

Newsletter of the Northwoods Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

Volume 15, Number 12 –June 2014

We Are a Welcoming Congregation

Upcoming Services

Services are on alternate Sundays at 10 AM

June 1: Dan Schroeder Thousands of Planets and Counting: Are We Alone in the Universe? People through all of history have at some time undoubtedly asked themselves if we are alone in the Universe. As of today the only place in our solar system that harbors life is Earth, a mid-sized planet in orbit around a star of average size. And as of 1995 we knew of no other planets of any kind around other stars but, as the title indicates, the situation today is dramatically different. I will discuss how extraterrestrial planets have been found, what we know about such planets, and speculate about life and what we might have to deal with if it is discovered.

June 15: James Galasinski Religious, Spiritual or Both? I am sure everyone has heard someone say they are spiritual but not religious. This negative view of religion may be due to the limited and compartmentalized definition our culture works with. We will explore how expansive and all-encompassing religion can be so that we can proudly and definitely say that we are indeed religious.

June 29: Rev. Phil Sweet Practicing Your Own Religion


Adult R.E.: Adult RE will conclude its present series on June 8th

Starting on June 22nd we will begin a course entitled “Skeptics and Believers: Religious Debate in the Western Intellectual Tradition”.  Skeptics and Believers is not a course in religious doctrine but one of intellectual and philosophical exploration. It examines more than three centuries of debate in the Western world about the nature of religious faith and its compatibility with reason, even-handedly following and analyzing the arguments of both skeptics and believers. You will see how some of these argued their positions from a religious perspective—primarily Christian and Jewish, since the focus of this course is on Western thought—and how others approached the issue as one of pure philosophy. And you will also encounter still others for whom a separation between these two spheres was impossible, as well as those who sought to explain religion as a psychological or social phenomenon.

Come join us each alternate Sunday at 10:00 A.M. for intellectual stimulation, conversation, coffee, and good company.

Update from Dan Padberg and Sally O'Brien:  Sally and I are fine.  We are adapting to a very different year after our 16 Migrations to the beautiful North Woods.
Last Thanksgiving time we went to Sally’s daughter’s house in New Braunfells, Texas for the holiday and took some extra time to look over “Senior Living” arrangements in their area.  We learned a lot about these arrangements and found a place we liked which was located in a near-by town, San Marcos. The arrangement we liked best is a two bedroom – two bath of 1002 square feet with a car-port. We are now  living in a 1700 sq. ft. place with a two car garage.  We put our names on the waiting list and returned to Florida.  We began trying to get the house ready to show and to downsize our accumulation of stuff.
This place doesn’t take names on the list too seriously—until you sell your home.  We heard nothing in the following weeks and months, but we put our house on the market in early April.  It sold the next day!  We called the senior living place as soon as we heard we were  getting an offer—left a message and soon received a call that we could have the unit we wanted by early June.  We have been in a complete tizzy since.
Sally’s daughter in Calif. came and will come again and help with sorting and distributing. The Texas daughter is also coming to help distribute.  Her husband is coming to help drive the car.  My daughter from Atlanta came to help with my stuff.  We will take a rental truck and our car and pick-up.  Uprooting  ourselves from this community is more difficult that we imagined.   We cannot imagine how all the pieces could fall into place better, yet—we are exhausted keeping track of everything from day to day. 
Our plan is to pack up May 27-28 (professional packers); load the truck and pick-up May 29 and start driving West; unload in Texas May 31; have an estate sale June 4-6; close June 9 in abstensia.  The lady who runs the estate sale will sell what we leave or give it to charity and leave the house clean.
Most of the arrangements were made through a specialist who was an acquaintance of Sally’s and a friend of her daughters in Panama.  We will have drivers for the rental truck and pick-up—they will load and unload.  She knows and has worked with all the professionals we will be using.  I was skeptical about having another middleman in the transactions, but she has been a life saver for us.
We regret that we have been poor corresponders during this period.  We want to say how much we appreciate the opportunity we have had to spend our summers in the North Woods and how much our friends mean to us.
Our Texas address will be:  600 Leah Ave., Apt. 703;  San Marcos, TX 78666.  Our E-mail will stay the same and we will let you know when we have a phone.   We send our love,  Sally and Dan

Service Auction:  Save the date:  Friday, July 11
The NUUF Care Committee is sponsoring a Service Auction on Friday, July 11th, to be held at the Fellowship. There will be a catered supper, entertainment, refreshments and The Auction.  An Email was sent out previously with suggestions for  this Auction.

There will also be a "Silent Auction". You may bring articles in good condition for this auction such as jewelry, pottery, small art objects etc.  A special form will be e-mailed to each member in early June for you to describe your contribution to the Service Auction and a minimum bid.  We ask that this form be returned to us by June 23rd so that a list of items can be sent out members.   Any Questions please contact Joan Hauer 715 356 6540 or Mary Ann Fields 715 385 2975.

Dinners at Frederick Place We will be fixing and serving dinners at Frederick Place on June 22, 23, 2014. Please contact Diane Reupert if you can help.

Save the Date: NUUF turns 25 in 2014! Barb Mochon is taking pictures for the photo directory. See her on Sundays to get your portrait taken. Dinner will begin at 5 PM on August 23, with appetizers and live music. We will provide the chicken and vegetarian lasagna. We ask members to bring an appetizer, side dish or dessert. We'll have a special service on August 24. Invitations will be sent out in mid-July. Questions? Contact Elinore, Chair of the Anniversary Committee.


Lynn Deinard 06-03

Ethan Cummings & Jessica Rosenberg 06-07

Richard Thieret & Wenda Sheard 06-16

Stephanie Perkins 06-18

Celeste and Mike Gonder 06-21

Lynn and David Deinard 06-21

Sue Ferguson 06-23

Faye and Lee Calvey 06-24

Betsy Schussler 06-28

Alan VanRaalte 06-28

Barbara Bratcher 06-30


Message from the President: As we approach the end of our fiscal year, I'd like to thank each of you for your many contributions to the Fellowship. We are closing out the year in good shape. We are financially sound and we have a committed group of people who belong to NUUF. As I have said here many times, it is the volunteer efforts of our members who keep the place running. We are aging perhaps, but full of energy, curiosity, and compassion. We care about each other and that gets us through the difficult times.

I'd also like to thank you for your support over the past year and a half. I took over as interim president of the board in February 2013. I had not been on the board prior to that appointment (which probably would have been helpful) so I needed a good bit of advice and support. Which you gave me. Thanks!

Enjoy the glorious weather! And, have a wonderful summer. John

In Closing: THE CALLING (This story for all ages was read at the MidAmerica Regional Assembly. I liked it so much that I asked the reader to let me make a copy to share with my Fellowship. Barbara Logan)

For years, when I was little, I begged for a dog. One day I came home to find an Australian shepherd that my dad had rescued from the pound. “Lady,” as we called her, was probably two years old when we got her. She was small for her breed and meek. She did not even bark for the first six months we had her. Although she was a shepherd by breed, Lady was a city dog whose daily routines involved walking around the block and not much else. The poor thing was bred for a life of work in the fields, but she hadn’t even seen a sheep in her life and never would.


One year, my family made a decision to move, and the city to which we were moving was not at all hospitable to dogs. It became clear we would have to find Lady a new home. We decided to take her to my grandfather’s farm in New Mexico. My grandfather had taken up the hobby of raising racehorses and had fifteen acres of land on which lived five high-strung quarter horses, who were in various stages of preparation for their careers. It was here that we took Lady, our meek city dog, for her waning years.


The first morning after our arrival at the farm, we awake to find no sign of Lady. She didn’t come when we called. To add to our worries, my grandfather noticed that the horses were also nowhere to be seen. As quickly as we could, we dressed and set out looking for the missing dog and horses.

We looked to one side of the fields with no luck. There were no animals to be seen. Then, we looked to the other side of the fields and seemed to have no luck again until, in the farthest corner of the farthest field, we saw something.

At first, it looked like just one or two of the horses, but as we got closer, we saw that it was all five. They were clearly agitated and restless at being corralled in one small corner of the field. Only when we got to within twenty feet of them could we see what kept them there.

There, near to the ground, just below their knees, running back and forth, barking and nipping at their heels, was Lady, her bobbed tail wagging in pure delight. After all those years, Lady had found her calling. It was instinct and pure joy to her.

I wonder how likely it is that you or I could be born to a calling, born with a gift, and not know it, maybe never know it. Could we also go all or most of a lifetime without figuring such a thing out? I certainly hope not. I hope that, like Grandma Moses discovered with her painting, there is always that day, even late in our lives, when we experience that passion, whatever it is, and know for a time the thing for which we were made.


Northwoods Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

P.O. Box 1881

Woodruff, WI 54568-1881



John Viste, President



The NUUSLetter is published monthly. Newsletter Deadline: 27th of the month. Please send submissions to Elinore Sommerfeld at esommerf@aol.com.


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