Murray UU Church | 505 North Main St | Attleboro, MA 02703
June 14, 2018
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"Celebrating Fathers & Flowers"

Rev. Gretchen Weis

It is the last Sunday of the official church year - a time to honor fathers and grandfathers, as well as, celebrate Flower Communion. Everyone is invited to bring a flower to add to the community-wide bouquet up front -- your flower symbolizes the many gifts you bring to our beloved faith community. During communion, each person will be invited forward to take a different flower from the bouquet to symbolize the many gifts you receive here at Murray Church. This year's service will feature the music of the Grateful Dead, courtesy of our Murray Church rock and roll band!

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"General Assembly Worship Broadcast"

Rev. Gretchen Weis

Broadcast LIVE from UUA General Assembly in Kansas City, Reverend Susan Frederick-Fray, the ninth president of the UUA.


NOTE: This service will run longer than normal from 10:00 am to 11:30 am.

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If you missed a service, or simply would like to listen to a particular sermon again, our sermons are now available on our website and are downloadable as MP3 files. Use our website link below and click on the sermon link at the top of the page and either listen or download the sermon of your choice. You can also access current and back issues of Murray Notes. Just click on the Church News link. Thanks to Bill Jones for working on these projects!
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 Your One Wild and Precious Life 
  by Rev. Gretchen Weis
I love this time of year. Have you noticed how late the sun sets and the sky remains light at night?  How long it takes for true evening darkness to set in? There is still some lightness to the sky even after 9:00 pm. Next week is the summer solstice - the longest day and shortest night of the year for those of us here in the northern hemisphere.    

I am reveling in these longer days leading into summer right now - it feels like payback for all those late fall, early winter afternoons we endured, when the darkness arrived sometime around 4:00 pm. As summer officially approaches, I wanted to share one of my favorite poems by Mary Oliver, titled "The Summer Day."  She writes:


Who made the world?
Who made the swan,
and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean--
the one who has flung herself
out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar
out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws
back and forth instead of up and down--
who is gazing around
with her enormous and complicated eyes.

Now she lifts her pale forearms
and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open,
and floats away.

I don't know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down into the grass, 
how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed,
how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.

Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn't everything die at last,
and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?


Summertime is almost here, the school year is about to end. May your summertime be idle and blessed, filled with wild and precious days - beach days, hiking days, barefoot in the grass days, boating days, fishing days, just lazing around the house days, grilling out days, vacation days, curl up with a good book days, and nights catching fireflies, enjoying cool breezes and gazing up at the stars...  

As the poem reminds us, even if we may not know exactly what a prayer is, we do know how to pay attention.  May each of you be fully present to the summer days and evenings ahead, taking the time to find beauty, joy and extraordinary moments among the ordinary every day. I plan to spend time reading, reflecting, and exploring a little more of New England over the summer.

Please plan to join us this Sunday for our Flower Communion and Father's Day service for all ages. There will be no RE, but the nursery will be available. Flower Communion is a long-standing Unitarian tradition coming out of Eastern Europe. All are invited - including our children, youth and teens -- to bring a flower with them to church, to symbolize the individual gifts we each bring to Murray. Flower by flower, we will build a communal bouquet of our symbolic gifts. After the flowers are blessed, everyone will be invited to come forward to pick a different flower to take home with them, to symbolize the gifts we each receive here. 

In addition, this Sunday we will celebrate and thank our office administrator, LaChelle Barton, who will be moving back to Michigan this summer to be nearer to her son. LaChelle's last day will be Friday, June 29th. We'll order some pizza for lunch and all are invited to stop by and have some pizza as we bid farewell to our beloved LaChelle.

This will be the last Sunday of the official church year, and we'll end the year with some raucous rock and roll. Thanks to our Murray house rock band, this Sunday's service will feature music from the Grateful Dead. Parents, please note there will be no Religious Education programming over the summer. Special thanks to the wonderful folks of the Religious Services Committee, who have planned yet another fabulous summer of lay-led worship services for us.   

The new church year will start back up again the Sunday after Labor Day, September 9th, with our traditional water in-gathering service. So please remember to capture a small sample of water to share with us from your summer adventures, whether you find yourself on the road someplace exotic, or are enjoying summer from the wilds of your own backyard.

As I close my fourth year here at Murray, I give thanks for the gift of each and every one of you - the gifts you each bring, and the many gifts you each receive as part of this vital, thriving, meaningful beloved community of love and justice. Blessings to all of you -- have a safe, happy, healthy summer.


With a full, loving and grateful heart,

Rev. Gretchen 

Nursery is available from 9:45 am -- 11 am. The nursery is located in the Religious Education Wing and is the first room on the left.
Children (Grades K - 8):
Sunday, June 17th -- Multi-Gen Flower Communion. Nursery will be available for babies, toddlers and preschoolers only. If your child needs a rest during the service, please use the John Murray room. A parent must stay with their child in the John Murray Room.

See you in August for nursery cleaning and the Ice Cream Social!

Youth Group (Grades 9 - 12):
Sunday, June 17th --Multi-Gen Flower Communion. 

See you in August for nursery cleaning and the Ice Cream Social!
August Dates to Remember:
Wednesday, August 22nd -- From 10 am to 12 pm, Nursery Cleaning. Toys will be bleached and classrooms straightened. After the cleaning, we will get pizza! Suggested donation for the pizza is $5. 

Sunday, August 26th -- At 4 pm, Ice Cream Party! RE will provide the ice cream and you provide the fun toppings!  More details and an evite coming in the beginning of August!

Camp Murray


Our children enjoyed Camp Murray!

June 20 - 24th
You Can View Some Parts of General Assembly Live on Your Computer

The UUA holds its annual denomination meeting, known as General Assembly (GA), once a year in late June. Ministers and congregants come from throughout the world to attend workshops and meetings, and to hold the annual meeting of the association. Several parts of GA will be available to all over the internet to live stream beginning with the opening ceremony on Wednesday evening, June 20th, from 8:00 pm to 9:30 pm EST.   

Here is a link to the General Assembly Online Live Streaming page on the UUA Website for more information, and for links to the various sessions that will be live streamed. Following the event, you can also use the link below to access the service or event on You Tube. Please keep in mind that the times listed on the UUA Website are Central Standard Time, as GA is in Kansas City this year. 

For those interested, I will be honored during the Service of the Living Tradition for receiving Final Fellowship by the UUA. That means I have passed three years of evaluation and have been found to be accepted fully into the ministry of our denomination. The Service of the Living Tradition will be live streamed on Thursday evening, June 21st beginning at 8pm EST. Jim and Janet Richardi and Bruce and Lucia Field will be sitting with me in my "friends and family" area when I will be called up on stage to be honored, so see if you can spot us!   

Also, Murray will be live streaming the closing worship service from GA on Sunday, June 24th, from 10:00 am to 11:30 am here in the church sanctuary, thanks to the Religious Services Committee.

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Jun. 16:
Save the Date!
Saturday Night, June 16th Providence Pride Parade

Come join in the fun of the 43rd Illuminated Night Pride Parade in Providence on Saturday evening, June 16th. The parade steps off at 8:15 pm, but we will need to gather and meet up with folks from other area UU Churches in parade formation usually around 7:00 pm. Those interested in having dinner together first may meet up at Morin's around 5:00 pm before we head to Providence. If you are interested in carpooling, plan to meet at the Murray parking lot by no later than 6:15 pm. All are encouraged to wear UU related T-shirts or gear and consider Mardi-Gras beads or other fun items that glow in the dark! We typically have 25 or more folks come from Murray and all ages are welcome! For more information, please see Rev. Gretchen.

Photo from Boston Globe.
Save Your Shoes!
Murray is collecting new and gently used shoes to be re-sold and recycled. Working in conjunction with Funds2Orgs, Murray will be paid by the pound for the shoes we collect. Shoes must be clean and dry and without obvious tears or large scuffs. The official drive will begin in September, but starting Sunday, June 10th, you'll see boxes to place your shoes along with more detailed information about what types of shoes we are accepting. Start cleaning your closets!

Murray UU Church Scholarships Available
Limited funds are available from the scholarship funds for this church year. The Scholarship Fund is administered by the Board of Deacons and Deaconesses. It is used to award scholarships to any member in good standing, following one full year of membership, for purposes of attending educational courses or training programs approved by this Board. For example, it could be applied toward registration fees for attending UU General Assembly in June. Applications should be submitted to the Board of Deacons and Deaconesses for approval. Please contact Donna Cooke at for additional guidelines and to obtain an application.

Murray Food Pantry 

Donations Needed:      

    • Feminine Care Products
    • Personal Care Items
    • Spring & Summer Clothing: gently used
      and clean 

Thank you for your continued support!
Murray Church Food Pantry Team
Jun. 23:
Murray Hosts Food & Friends Soup Kitchen 

Murray hosts the Food & Friends Soup Kitchen every 4th Saturday of the month, from 8 am -- 12:30 pm,

 at Centenary Methodist Church, located at 39 North Main Street in Attleboro.

Help out once for an hour! You'll make all the difference!

We need volunteers for all shifts and tasks. Tasks we need help with:
Early (8 am -- 10 am)
  • Set up tables & chairs
  • Make sandwiches
  • Prepare main meal
  • Wash dishes
  • Serve coffee & juice
 Later (10:45 am -- 12:30 pm)
  • Plate meals
  • Serve guests
  • Breakdown tables & chairs
  • Wash dishes
  • Sweep & mop
For more information, please contact Stephanie Paquette at

or (call or text) 401-603-8386.

Feel free to share this info with anyone who might be interested in helping out!

Jun. 27:

to Unload Food Delivery Trucks

The Food Pantry receives food twice a month, and we need help receiving the delivery. Food pick-up times are 
the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays each month. The trucks need to be unloaded requiring some lifting. 
This is one way Murray reaches out and is visible in the community, but it takes many volunteers to receive and distribute the food. If there are any strong bodies available on those days, who would like a light workout, please contact:
Roger Boucher at 508-838-8249, or email at
Thank you!
 From Green Sanctuary

 Calling Writers for the Summer Service
 on July 22nd...

Writers are needed to contribute work for July 22nd Summer Service themed: "Walk on the Wild Side: Sharing Stories from Nature." Do you have a personal story from your experiences in nature? Perhaps you were up close and personal with wildlife-either in the wilds of your back yard or in a forest or on the water elsewhere. Perhaps you have found a magical muse from the sunshine, the rain, or from the wilder forces of weather. Or, perhaps you are passionate about protecting nature from indifference or outright destruction and this has moved you to speaking out in poetry or prose. The "wild side" can take many forms as inspiration.

The Green Sanctuary team is hosting the July 22nd, summer service, "Walk on the Wild Side: Sharing Stories from Nature." We invite anyone to share their stories as part of this service. It can be a poem or short story, to be read during the homily part of the service (about 5 minutes, reading aloud). Favorite readings from other authors are also welcome for other parts of the service. Please let Judy DePue know if you would like to be part of this service. Email Judy at

2018 Summer Services


June 24
General Assembly Worship Broadcast  |  Charlie Adler

Broadcast LIVE from UUA General Assembly in Kansas City, Reverend Susan Frederick-Fray, the ninth president of the UUA.

NOTE: This service will run longer than normal from 10:00 am to 11:30 am.



  July 1

  Saving Our Democracy | Barbara Clark & Leo Immonen

  Are we in danger of losing our democracy? Why might that be? And
  what can be done to preserve it? Discussion will follow the service.



July 8

The Spirituality of Dance  |  Ruth Debrot & Barbi Calusidan

Each of us is a moving center, a space of divine mystery. And though we spend most of our time on the surface in the daily details of ordinary existence, most
of us hunger to connect to this space within, to break through to bliss, to be swept away into something bigger than us.


  July 15

  Meditation  |  Marguerite MacLean


         July 22

Walk on the Wild Side:
Sharing Stories of Experiences in Nature
 |  Judy DePue

The Green Sanctuary team and friends will share personal stories of being up close and personal with nature, drawing from adventures in the backyard
and beyond.



  July 29

  The Journey Inward: Moving Towards the Answers Inside  |  Laura DeSimone

  We spend much of our lives on the go moving from one thing to the next. This
  "doing" mentality takes the focus off our much needed "being" state. When we
  slow down and begin to focus on the here and now, we can tune into ourselves
  and begin to learn and trust our innate wisdom. This wisdom is where all of our
  answers reside. 


August 5

Crooked Paths  | Ted Weil

Life's paths are rarely, if ever, as straight and precise as we often think they should be. Partly because of our own expectations, and partly because so many around us seem to enjoy seemingly trouble and conflict-free lives that keep going exactly as they seem to plan. We'll explore the need to settle those anxieties, and instead learn to appreciate each of our unique and individual journeys through life, by learning to recognize the wisdom and the strength we gain traveling them.


  August 12

  Murray Mile  |  Rachel Killion

  No walking shoes needed! Travel through time on a virtual walking tour of
  Murray history. Starting at the center of town we will journey one mile down
  Main Street for over 140 years of Murray history while seated in the comfort
  of our pews.

August 19
Lessons from a Hurricane  |  Liz Lamoureux

In September 2017, while vacationing on the island of Dominica, it was devastated by hurricane Maria. Stories and insights gained during and
since that life-altering event will be shared.


  August 29

  TBD | Rev. Gretchen Weis



September 2 

Blessing of the Animals  |  Kavita Vansant

Our pets are a part of our family. We love and care for them and in return
we receive unconditional love, companionship, comfort and loyalty. Let us acknowledge how our pets uplift our lives and why we have them. Bring your
pet (on a leash/cage please), a photo of your pet and/or a favorite stuffed
animal to be blessed. The service will be held outside-weather permitting.