Central Unitarian Church Visits Partner Church in Prague

Members of Central Unitarian Church in Paramus, NJ visited the Prague Unitarian Congregation in the Czech Republic from May 9 – 15. Members of both congregations hiked to the the Jan Hus pulpit, the rock located in the Benešov region southeast of Prague on which the early church reformer and martyr Jan Hus (1372 – 1415) is believed to have preached. The two congregations held a joint worship service in Prague on Sunday, May 15, led by Rev. David Horst and Rev. Petr Samojský with members of the Prague congregation and choir participating. Church members from Prague visited Paramus last October.


Paramus congregants at Jan Hus Pulpit
Paramus congregants at Jan Hus Pulpit

If you are interested in learning more about the Partner Church program please visit their website.

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Juneteenth Celebrations

JUNETEENTH is a time for reflecting and rejoicing. From its Galveston, TX origin in 1865, the African American Emancipation Day has spread across the United States, and beyond.


CER has at least four congregations that host Juneteenth celebrations: First Unitarian Brooklyn, where I first learned about Juneteenth; the Community Church of New York UU; and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Central Nassau (UUCCN); and the Community UU Congregation at White Plains. Each celebrates in its own way.


Juneteenth 2016 (4)
Rev. Hope Johnson, Matt Watroba and Brenda Carpenter.

At UUCCN’s recent 13th Annual Juneteenth celebration! Southern Dinner and Commemoration Program began with the Maafa (Holocaust of African Enslavement) through the early days of slavery, to the Movement (the civil rights era) from Selma to Garden City, and beyond. Matt Watroba, Detroit’s Number 1 Folk Musician; and Brenda Carpenter, Storyteller brought the Juneteenth to life. Events like this offer opportunities for congregations to get together. Eight UU congregations attended along with representatives from the community.


How can we bring congregations together? What can we do to connect more directly with “the community.” We really are better together.


Yours, HOPE


Rev. Dr. Hope Johnson

Congregational Consultant

Central East Region


Also serving as Minister,

UUCCN, Garden City, NY

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Find Your Primary Contact

All four districts have now voted to dissolve and regionalization is now fast becoming a reality. For those of you who are now asking but wait, how do I know who to call? Where do I go to get help? We have an answer. We ask that you start with your primary contact. What is a primary contact you may ask? This is a CER Staff person with whom you can build a close, working relationship, who will have an intimate knowledge of your congregation’s blessings and challenges, and can be proactive in helping you to share those blessings and meet those challenges. Your Primary Contact can help you to navigate all the support and opportunities available to your congregation.


You can find your primary contact by selecting your congregation in this form.


This map shows you the congregations in our region and their assigned primary contact. Most primary contact assignments match up with our clusters. If you need help finding your primary contact please contact us at [email protected].

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GA Round Up – What Happened in Columbus?

General Assembly 2016 in Columbus, OH is over and many decisions were made. Here is a short summary of what happened. For details please visit the UU World coverage of GA.


To find video of the plenary sessions, Ware Lecture and worship services, please visit the UUA’s Virtual GA page. The Sunday morning worship service and the Ware Lecture with Krista Tippet were excellent presentations and left attendees buzzing. The Public Witness event with Rev. William Barber is also available and was excellent.


The three candidates for President of the UUA participated in the President’s Forum and you can watch that presentation.


The Study Action Issue “Corruption of Our Democracy” was selected for congregational study for the next four years. The Commission on Social Witness will be send out updated materials on this topic in the next few months.


The business resolution for “Screening Out Investments in Corporations Complicit in the Violation of Palestinian Rights,” as amended during mini-assembly and General Session III, failed to be adopted.


The business resolution on reconsidering Thanksgiving was adopted as amended during the mini-assembly.


Three Actions of Immediate Witness were selected and adopted for congregations to take immediate action. Detailed information on this actions will be released soon. They are:

  • Build Solidarity with Our Muslim Neighbors
  • Some Guns, All Guns: Legislating Appropriate Restrictions
  • Stop the Hate: Protect and Support our Transgender and Gender Non-Confirming  Family


Because the General Assembly in New Orleans is intended to be a justice focused GA, it was voted to suspend Actions of Immediate Witness for 2017.


Details on all the actions taken at General Assembly will be released in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!

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