FMUU MINISTERIAL SEARCH
CALL FOR LEADERSHIP

The Unitarian Universalist Church of Fargo-Moorhead (FMUU) seeks to call a half-time seminary-trained professional leader to serve the church.  Our preference would be someone who is or would be willing to be physically local.  The called professional must openly support the UU principles.  The called professional must be accepting of a diverse spiritual and religious congregation that is committed to a variety of worship services. The called professional will serve the congregation in the following capacities:

 

  1. Provide worship service twice a month.

  2. Be the face and voice of the congregation in the FM community.

  3. Provide spiritual and moral counseling within and outside the church.

  4. Assist the Care Team in outreach to members who cannot attend church.

  5. Support religious education and exploration for all congregants.

  6. Advise on church operations.

If interested, please read the Congregation Record, then fill out this APPLICATION and submit it to the FMUU Office

Please contact fmuu@fmuu.org with any questions.

This Month at FMUU - JUNE 2022 Services and Events

IN PERSON & ONLINE

Sunday, June 26, 2022, 11 a.m.

FLOWER COMMUNION

Join us in person at the church​ -or- Click here to join the Sunday Service at 11 a.m. Central

June 26, 2022, 11 a.m. - FLOWER COMMUNION

The Flower Ceremony, sometimes referred to as Flower Communion or Flower Festival, is an annual ritual that celebrates beauty, human uniqueness, diversity, and community. This is an opportunity for us to express our commitment to the Sixth Principle: We covenant and affirm and promote the goal of world community with peace and justice for all.

In this ceremony, everyone in the congregation brings a flower. Each person places a flower on the altar or in a shared vase. The congregation and minister bless the flowers, and they're redistributed. Each person brings home a different flower than the one they brought.

Photo by Erica Minton from UUA website

minton_flowers.jpeg

FMUU Church is IN PERSON and ONLINE!

Join us at the church or log into Zoom

Church services are offered in person on Sundays at 11 a.m. 

*** FMUU no longer requires masks to be worn inside the building.

Masks are encouraged for in-person attendance

based on attendees' personal comfort level. ***

FMUU Church 121 9th St S, Fargo.

 

or

via Zoom: Click here to join the Sunday Service at 11 a.m. Central

PAST SERVICES AND EVENTS

RECORDINGS AVAILABLE IN THE SERVICE RECORDINGS LIBRARY

JUNE 2022

 

June 19, 2022, 11 a.m. - Jeremiah Program

The mission of Jeremiah Program (JP) is to disrupt the cycle of poverty for single mothers and their children two generations at a time. Moms are at the center of what JP does. We know that trauma and systemic and structural inequities are woven through their realities as women experiencing poverty. JP provides the necessary support for moms to begin the path out of poverty, but moms themselves are the best architects of the solutions to their families’ challenges. And we’re positioning JP moms to be those architects, impacting not only their families but also their communities. Laetitia Mizero Hellerud, the new Executive Director of Jeremiah Program, Fargo-Moorhead will share more about this revolutionary approach to supporting single mothers experiencing poverty. 

June 12, 2022, 11 a.m. - Juneteenth with Gabby Clavo

Juneteenth (short for “June Nineteenth”) marks the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people be freed. The troops’ arrival came a full two and a half years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Juneteenth honors the end to slavery in the United States and is considered the longest-running African American holiday. On June 17, 2021, it officially became a federal holiday. 

Gabrielle is a military child that grew up in different parts of the world and found her passion for history while living in England for 10 years. Following her passion, she moved to Fargo in 2019 where she completed her degree in Public History and History at North Dakota State University. During her last year at NDSU she completed an internship with the National Museum of African American History and Culture Smithsonian and helped curate one of the first Black history exhibits that HCSCC produced. Her passions include learning different languages, painting, and photography.  

June 5, 2022, 11 a.m. - Supporting People with Disabilities in our Community

Creative Care for Reaching Independence (CCRI) has a long history of providing person-centered services to people with disabilities. The organization was founded more than 45 years ago by a group of forward-looking parents who had similar dreams for their sons and daughters. For this group of parents, CCRI provided a family-like setting where their children were given the opportunity and encouragement to be participants in the community. They knew that participation was the key to acceptance.

MAY 2022

May 29, 2022, 11 a.m. - To Give and to Receive

This month’s theme has been “to give and receive.” Given the thematic charge, Jessica did what she always does—reflect, research, repeat. This Sunday, you’ll hear the product of those musings.
 
Jessica Jensen is a mother, scholar and UU member.

May 22, 2022, 11 a.m. - Decriminalizing HIV and AIDS: Social Justice and Health Outcomes

Most state and local laws related to Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) were developed in the late 1980s and early 1990’s, the height of the AIDS epidemic.  Many of the existing laws do not reflect advances in the science of treatment and prevention, creating issues of health and social justice.  This discussion will delve into the legal aspects of HIV and AIDS related legal policies and how they can hamper public health efforts and marginalize people we love.
 
Gretchen Dobervich, a licensed social worker, serves as the Public Health Policy Manager for the American Indian Public Health Resource Center in the Public Health Department at North Dakota State University. Gretchen received her Master of Public Health from North Dakota State University and her Bachelor of Social Work from Minot State University. Gretchen has served in the North Dakota House of Representative since 2016 serving on the Human Services and Agriculture committees. Gretchen and her husband, Eric, live in Fargo.

May 15, 2022, 11 a.m. - Gospel According to Erik

Over the years I have become a disciple of Reverend Erik Walker Wikstrom.  Some of you have had to hear me quote from his books just like people of other faiths quote from their holy books.  Some of you have been the recipient of one of his book from me whether you wanted it or not.  As I reflected upon Erik’s body of work, I felt called to share with you some of his thinking and writings that inspired and informed my Unitarian Universalist faith.

May 8, 2022, 11 a.m. - My Journey Through Kidney Disease and Transplant 

Beloved and longtime member, Stacy Nicholson, will tell her story - a story that includes a kidney disease diagnosis, a kidney transplant and many lessons along the way. Through it all, Stacy made the uncomfortable shift from a self-described Giver to that of a Taker. 

May 1, 2022, 11 a.m. - International Workers' Day

'What comes to mind when you think of May Day? Is it a festival marking the beginning of summer? Do you think of dropping goodie bags on neighbors' doors, ringing the doorbell, and running away? Most likely, you're not thinking about worker's rights or Labor Day, but in many countries throughout the world, May Day is synonymous with International Workers' Day. And our speaker, Mark Froemke, knows his May Day. 

Mark spent 22 years in the sugar beet industry and has been involved in the labor movement for over 40 years. He currently serves as president of the Northern Valley Labor Council and sits on the executive board of the AFL-CIO for Minnesota and North Dakota. 

 

APRIL 2022 

April 17, 2022, 11 a.m. - Reproductive Justice

Reproductive justice is defined by SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective as "the human right to have children, not have children, and parent the children we have in safe and sustainable communities.” Rooted in a human rights framework, reproductive justice extends beyond the right “to choose,” and acknowledges and centers the ways in which intersecting identities—including race, class, sexual orientation, and gender identity—impact one’s ability to access healthcare and bodily autonomy. 
 
In her talk on reproductive justice (RJ), Tibby Reas Hinderlie will explore the history of the RJ framework, including the 12 founding mothers of the movement, RJ’s foundation in Black feminist thought, the limitations of white feminism, and how the reproductive justice framework prompts us to call for equity-oriented policies and changes beyond the realm of reproductive health, so that our communities can thrive.  
 
Tibby Reas Hinderlie is a nonprofit communications professional who is especially passionate about health justice causes, liberatory movement work, and who previously worked in abortion care for five years. Tibby’s work in direct patient care, reproductive rights, and reproductive justice included roles at the local, state, and national level. Locally, she worked at the Red River Women’s Clinic in Fargo as a Patient Advocate and Office Coordinator. At the state level, Tibby served on the board of directors of the North Dakota Women In Need (WIN) Abortion Access Fund for five years, including four years as board president. In 2020, she provided contract communications work to the organization she considers her "political home," the National Network of Abortion Funds (NNAF).

April 10, 2022, 11 a.m. - What's Our UU Ism

 

Jessica Jensen, FMUU member, was asked to speak on the topic of “isms” and which represent us as FMUU as part of the Everybody Has an Ism series.  Since she’d never really given the matter much thought, she did what she always does—research and reflection—on repeat. She’ll share what she learned, how she processed it through personal stories and observations about FMUU, and what she’s now concluded about the topic. 

Jessica Jensen is a mother of three, scholar, and FMUU member.

April 3, 2022, 11 a.m. - You keep using that word, Capitalism? I don’t think it means what you think it means

It is pretty common these days to blame “capitalism” for most of the injustice in the world, but the term has become more of a catch-all for “the system” and the criticism doesn’t really hit its mark. In this discussion, Jack will discuss the history of capitalism, try to get past the caricature, and explore how equity, empathy, community, and progressive politics are all compatible with more inclusive capitalism. 

Jack Russell Weinstein is a Chester Fritz Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and director of the Institute for Philosophy at Public Life at the University of North Dakota. He is the host of Prairie Public Radio’s "Why? Philosophical Discussion About Everyday Life" (www.whyradioshow.org). He is the author of three books, most recently Adam Smith’s Pluralism: Rationality, Education, and the Moral Sentiments. He maintains a philosophy blog aimed at general audiences at www. pqed.org and can be found on Twitter @jackrweinstein. More information and an archive of his articles can be found at www.jackrussellweinstein.com

MARCH 2022

March 27, 2022, 11 a.m. - Boarding Schools and Spiritual Reconciliation

Heather has been involved in equity work her entire life; it’s not work that she chose to start at any one specific time. Rather, for Heather, the work of equity is a way of life.

Her formal educational training started with an associate degree in Marketing from Southeast Tech in Sioux Falls, SD. From there, she pursued a Bachelor of Arts in Project Management from MSUM. After receiving her bachelor’s degree, Heather earned her Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from MSUM.

Beyond her formal education, Heather has participated in numerous trainings and workshops; a sample of these efforts includes: The Blandin Foundation Community Leadership Training and The Bush Foundation’s BushCon.

Heather has also worked in many facets of equity work within the region. She led the Human Rights Task Force for Moorhead Area Public Schools, served as the Vice Chair of the Moorhead Native American Commission, and developed programming that laid a foundation for the Moorhead School District to hire a Director of Equity and Inclusion position.

In November 2020, Heather was elected to the Minnesota House of Representatives for District 4A representing Moorhead, Minnesota. This historic election cannot be underestimated, as she is the first Native LGBTQIA+ woman serving rural Minnesota in the legislature. This momentous accomplishment became a reality due to Heather’s unwavering commitment to foundational issues of education, equity, and healthcare for all.

March 20, 2022, 11 a.m. - Serendipity - A Personal Story

Sometimes life takes us on an unexpected journey with an unexpected happy ending. I would like to talk about my lifelong work with people with disabilities and music and the funny twists and turns that life takes.

Joseph De Masi is a professional singer/songwriter and entertainer from New York City who met his wife 27 years ago while doing a gig in Grand Forks and has now been an ND native for the past 25 years after they got married. If you are going to move someplace cold, do it for love!

March 13, 2022, 11 a.m. - Living Your Best Day – in the Later Chapters of Life

What does life look like as we are living more towards the later chapters of life? How can we impact what our time looks like at this stage of life? What is the role of hospice care? In our time together, we will help to demystify some of these important yet often avoided conversations.

Larry has worked in healthcare for the past 34 years. He has been with Hospice of the Red River Valley since October 2021.  He is excited to help educate the community and dispel the myths surrounding Hospice care. 

He is married and has two adult stepchildren.

About Hospice of the Red River Valley
In 1981, Hospice of the Red River Valley was founded on the fundamental belief that everyone deserves access to high-quality end-of-life care. We fulfill our nonprofit mission by providing medical, emotional, personal and spiritual care, as well as grief support to our patients, their families and caregivers during a tender time in life. Our staff helps those we serve experience more meaningful moments through exceptional hospice care, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, wherever a patient calls home. Spread across more than 40,000 square miles in North Dakota and Minnesota, Hospice of the Red River Valley offers round-the-clock availability via phone, prompt response times and same-day admissions, including evenings, weekends and holidays. Contact us anytime at 800-237-4629 or hrrv.org

 

March 6, 2022, 11 a.m. - At Risk and Homeless Youth in Fargo-Moorhead 

Barb Grabar of Fraser, Ltd. will share the important work of her organization. Fraser, Ltd. provides program diversity with a shared mission; supporting children, youth, and adults on their life’s journey towards independence. For 128 years Fraser, Ltd. has served people society deemed un-servable. Initially caring for unwed mothers to empowering adults with disabilities, all children, and at-risk and homeless youth. In addition to providing mental health services for the public and those utilizing our services.

 

Seeing the need for at-risk and homeless youth, ages 16-26, in our community, Fraser, Ltd. began Transitional Youth Services in 2009 providing assistance with basic needs, education, and advocacy.

Stepping Stones Resource Center, the only drop-in center available in our community to this population, provides food, clothing, personal hygiene, and case management. SSRC has seen a 52% increase in youth in the last year. The Transitional Living Program provides transition-age youth short-term, stable housing while they acquire independent living skills and stability to maintain employment.

FEBRUARY 2022

February 27, 2022, 11 a.m. - Ashley before Yoga 

I used to have panic attacks.

I started yoga as a pitiful excuse to feel less guilty watching Law and Order: SVU. Yoga had other plans and the patience to wait for me. Yoga is a crafty little teacher, constantly keeping me on my toes (good for balance!) Through yoga, I've learned what to take seriously -- effort, humility, concentration, and listening, and what to not take so seriously, namely myself. On this journey, I've become a more confident, compassionate, and competent human. I practice yoga to feel, cope, and interact with the world.

February 20, 2022, 11 a.m. - Famous UUs with Carolyn Monzingo

 

Who are the Unitarians and Universalists who came before us?  Who are our contemporary UU’s?  Some of these amazing individuals helped shape who we are today because of their social action, leadership, science, education, entertainment, writing, and reputations will be explored.  We are who we are because of them.

Carolyn Monzingo has been a member of this congregation since 1971 and has been active as a Commissioned Lay Leader, our first Administrator, Program chair, Membership chair, Place Committee chair, event planner, gardener, and "Jill of all trades."  She has deep interest in the history of Unitarian Universalism and of this church.  Please welcome Carolyn to our pulpit.

February 13, 2022, 11 a.m. - Telling Our Stories "The experience that changed my life".

Another beloved FMUU tradition, storytelling, returns on February 13th. Just in time for Valentine's Day.

February 6, 2022, 11 a.m. - Living With Your Own Energy Is The Natural Thing To Do

Generating your own renewable energy and emitting no pollution are really good things.  They improve health (especially our children), reduce stress on the environment, and save lots of money.  What can be wrong about doing those three things?  Well, it's not so easy to do locally, but it is possible.  We will discuss how. 

John Bagu earned his Ph. D. in Biochemistry in Canada.  Moved to the United State to get away from the cold and ended up in Fargo.  After leaving NDSU John started his own company Community Electrification which does solar and EV charge station projects.  Check out our website celectrify.com to see some examples.

JANUARY 2022

 

January 30, 2022, 11 a.m. - 5th Sunday Sing-along

One of the favorite FMUU traditions returns this Sunday. Facilitated by Joe DeMasi, we invite you to the FMUU Sing-along where you can shout out your favorite hymns while others join in the singing.

January 23, 2022, 11 a.m. - Telling Our Stories -- My Search for Identity with the FMUU Congregation in the Identity series; and New Member Ceremony

Storytelling knits the community together. Storytelling makes us laugh and cry and see one another more clearly. Storytelling is back in 2022! This Sunday bring your story of identity to share with our FMUU community. We will also welcome our new members to the FMUU Congregation.

January 16, 2022, 11 a.m. - Bending Towards Justice: One More Step by Paul R. Beedle on MLK Jr Day; read by Carolyn Monzingo

In observance of Martin Luther King Jr Day, our January 16th service will feature a UUA sermon from Paul R. Beedle, "Bending Towards Justice: One More Step".

Thomas Jefferson said that "We are all created equal," and Martin Luther King Jr. challenged us to build the highway through Inequality and enter the river of Diversity.  This is achieved when we share, help one another, and treat each other fairly and justly.

January 9, 2022, 11 a.m. - Celebrating Eve’s Act of Disobedience: Defying God for God’s Sake with David B. Myers in the Identity series

There is a traditional interpretation of the myth of Adam and Eve that tells a very negative story about Eve and by implication women in general. The denigration of Eve—as a kind of Everywoman—has generated a long history of religious misogyny. Eve has been accused of bringing sin into a sinless world. From a traditional Christian point of view, she was often seen as responsible for the fall of humankind—for original sin. On this conventional telling of the story, Eve is demonized and, indeed, seen as an instrument of Satan as the serpent. I urge a fresh look at and a radical retelling of this myth. Adopting a transgressive view, I see Eve as a heroine who, paradoxically, in disobeying God makes it possible for human beings to realize their God-like potential. Eve, according to my take on her, is the first of many women portrayed in the Hebrew Bible who stand out for their courage and boldness, often in defiance of male authority.

David B. Myers. Retired professor of philosophy, MSUM. A member of the FM Interfaith Center which he established in 2010. Member of the Interfaith Council on Native Boarding School Accountability. Member of Temple Beth El, a Reform synagogue. Author of Did God Die on the Way to Houston? A Queer Tale (2020, Wipf & Stock). 

January 2, 2022, 11 a.m. - What a Psychologist Thinks of Mindfulness with David Harston in the 'Speaking the Languages of Identity' series

There is a gap between the two cultures in how they search for God or the Tao. One is our Western World's logical method, and the second is the Eastern World's intuitive way.
This program will explore the divide, and suggest how those who have been enculturated by the logical world can use its pedagogical and psychological skills to overcome our culture's intuitive bankruptcy and have an experience with that aspect of reality called the sacred.  

David Harston is a clinical psychologist with over 50 years of experience as a therapist, educator, seminar leader, and speaker. 

DECEMBER 2021

December 26, 2021, 11 a.m. - Mary Oliver: Prophet of the 7th Principle with Bill Thomas in the Hope series

Mary Oliver died this year.  For at least the past 20 years she has been the poet most quoted in UU services.  Her words are non-dogmatic, powerfully spiritual.  A critic said she "... can describe and transmit ecstasy, while retaining a practical awareness of the world as one of predators and prey.”  Which sounds a little scarier than she is, her work is compassionate and humane.  She said, "The Real Prayers Are Not The Words" Nonetheless, this service will be mostly her words.  

December 19, 2021, 11 a.m. - An Intergenerational Celebration of Christmas with Emma Hetland and Laurie Baker in the Hope series

When the Sun has weakened to a few short hours, the winter holidays converge and we lift our spirits with play, song, and the promise that the Sweet Spring will come again. You and all your dear ones are invited to join Emma Hetland, Laurie Baker, and the FMUU children in a celebration of the winter holy days.

December 12, 2021, 11 a.m. - Do you have the Will? Do you know the Way?
with Tim Peterson (in the Hope series)

Do you have the will? Do you know the way?  Both of these questions must be answered in the affirmative if hope is going to be more than just a wish and a prayer.  Hope connects us with our future.  It matter because the future matters.  Come December 12 to hear the critical ingredients to make hope come alive in you life.

 

December 5, 2021, 11 a.m. - Hope, Despair, and the 'Don’t Know' Mind: A Buddhist Perspective with Mary Struck (in the Hope Series)

In a nation largely peopled with immigrants driven by their hope for a better life, the idea of hope seems to be part of America’s DNA. Could there be a downside, though, to the notion that hope is always a beneficial mind state?  Buddhism suggests that the question is worth investigating.

NOVEMBER 2021

 

November 28, 2021, 11 a.m. - What Makes For Human Goodness with Skip Wood in the Healing series

Skip Wood is a long-time member of FMUU and a former board president. He is a producer for Prairie Public Broadcasting’s radio division. What will he have to say to us? That is just going to have to be a surprise. But if you’ve heard Skip’s past programs you already know it will be a good one. 

November 21, 2021, 11 a.m. - Self-Care as a Healing Ritual with Randi Kay Olsen in the Healing series

A lot of times when we think of self-care, we think of bubble baths and pedicures. But self-care is more than a relaxing activity - it’s a powerful ritual that connects you to your inner wisdom and your true needs.

 

November 14, 2021, 11 a.m. - Through the Lens of the Enneagram: A Spiritual Path with Linda Johansen (in the Healing series)

The Enneagram is a geometric figure that maps out the nine fundamental personality types of human nature.  It is a development of modern psychology that has roots in spiritual wisdom from many different ancient traditions.  The wisdom of the Enneagram can be used by persons of almost any spiritual belief system as a tool to understand themselves and others, and to overcome inner barriers to realize their unique gifts and strengths and discover their deepest direction in life.

November 7, 2021, 11 a.m. - Vedanta - a philosophical foundation of Hinduism with Indranil Sen Gupta (in the Healing Series)

Vedanta is one of the world’s most ancient spiritual philosophies and one of its broadest, based on the Vedas, the sacred scriptures of India. It is the philosophical foundation of Hinduism; but while Hinduism includes aspects of Indian culture, Vedanta is universal in its application and is equally relevant to all countries, all cultures, and all religious backgrounds. 

Dr. Indranil SenGupta is an Associate Professor of the Department of Mathematics, NDSU. He is a co-founder of the Vedanta Study Circle of North Dakota (Web: http://ndvedanta.org/). He has studied Hindu scriptures with a focus on Advaita Vedanta.

OCTOBER 2021

October 31, 2021, 11 a.m. - Nature Being Human: Remembering Our Connection To a Living World with Jennifer Moldenhauer (in the Harvest Series)

In our busy lives, it is easy to imagine we are somehow separate from nature.  When we see ourselves outside of nature, we create a sense that we are living ON a planet rather than within an interconnected world. Jennifer Moldenhauer, a long-time friend and member of FMUU, invites you to use your senses in simple, playful, and meditative exercises to deepen your awareness of connection to the world around you. By entering into the regular practice of honoring and strengthening our connection with nature, we become more aware of how we are not so much humans being, but nature being human. 
 

October 24, 2021, 11 a.m. - Growing Together Community Gardens with Jack Wood (in the Harvest series)

Growing Together Community Gardens: Many Hands Make Light Work with Jack Wood (in the Harvest series)

In 2005 a group of community leaders in Fargo, North Dakota met to discuss better ways to embrace New Americans into our community. One of the ideas was to start a community garden. One of the members at the meeting was the Church President from a congregation in Fargo. He called Jack Wood after the meeting to see if he would be interested in helping with this project. Jack’s passion for the past ten years had been Tomatoes. He has over 50 Heirloom varieties that he has been seed saving in the gardens in his backyard. For Jack, this was a great way to expand his passion for Tomatoes. For our 1st volunteers, it was about the vegetables that we grew. It soon became about learning about other cultures and helping people.

October 17, 2021, 11 a.m. - Telling Our Stories about Homecoming or Harvest with the FMUU Congregation (in the Harvest Series)

Storytelling knits the community together. Storytelling makes us laugh and cry and see one another more clearly. Storytelling is back as a Sunday program. This Sunday bring your story of homecoming or harvest and share with our FMUU community. 

October 10, 2021, 11 a.m. - Bearing Witness (in the Harvest Series)

We are living in challenging times, but when have we not? With help from our UUA resources, we will discuss what it means to see pain up close and to understand justice. The harvest of justice comes from long labor and bearing witness to harsh truths.

October 3, 2021, 11 a.m. - A Journey through the Qur’an (and Beyond!) with Mary Struck, Ron Gaul, and Guests (in the Harvest Series)

What happens when an interfaith group spends five years together reading and studying the Qur’an? Find out as some of the participants tell you their stories.

Relating their experiences will be Dr. Ahmed Kamel, Professor of Computer Science at Concordia; Dr. Anne Blankenship, Associate Professor of Religious Studies at NDSU; Ron Gaul, a long-time progressive, social activist, and member of the FM UU Church; and Mary Struck, another (grateful) FMUU Church member.

SEPTEMBER 2021

September 5, 2021, 11 a.m. - Putting the Labor Back In Labor Day (in the Homecoming series) with Carolyn Monzingo 

Why talk about poverty when you can talk about the good old days and the golden age?  The American labor movement – made nominally legal by the Roosevelt government in the 1930s and mostly illegal by the Reagan government in the 1980’s – is still the best anti-poverty initiative in the United States history despite institutional opposition.  Unions work because they go to the root of the poverty problem: getting paid fairly for a day’s work.  Unions are one of the few hopes for poor working people in the United States – and the world.  Poor people stop being poor when they get a fair wage.  Inherent worth and dignity of every person, justice, equity, and compassion in human relations.

September 12, 2021, 11 a.m. - A Brief History of FMUU (in the Homecoming Series) with Jarrad Prasifka

As we officially re-open our doors, we are still haunted by the COVID-19 pandemic and hoping that we won’t have to close them again. Over the last year and a half, the FMUU congregation faced many changes. We’ve lost a good minister to other opportunities and are likely to be a year before finding someone to fill that position again. These are not new experiences. These and other “crises of faith“ are sprinkled throughout FMUU‘s history. Our long-time member, Laurie Baker, spent time reflecting on the history of FMUU including the tumultuous pandemic time.

Jarrad Prasifka is an entomologist who studies sunflower insects for the Department of Agriculture. When not working, Jarrad enjoys reading, watching sports, or spending time outside with his wife, Patti, and daughter, Ada. Jarrad's first exposure to Unitarian Universalism was at the UU Fellowship in Ames, Iowa, which hosted a mindfulness meditation group many years ago, and he has been an FMUU Board member since 2019.

 

September 19, 2021, 11 a.m. - What’s Homecoming without a Home? The State of Homelessness in FM (in the Homecoming series) with Cody Schuler

Reasons people find themselves without a home will always exist. But with enough affordable housing in our community, increased employment and income, and coordinated service delivery systems, we can make homelessness rare, brief, and one-time for individuals and families in our community—virtually ending long-term homelessness. How do we do that?

Cody will present the 2021 State of Homelessness in the FM Metro that was published earlier this summer. This annual report includes statistics and information about efforts and progress being made in ending homelessness in our community. Additionally, he will provide context around the issues of systemic homelessness and policy solutions being implemented or sought.
 
Cody Schuler is Executive Director of the FM Coalition to End Homelessness, an advocacy, education, and collaboration nonprofit with a mission to prevent and end homelessness in the Fargo metro area. He sees his work personally and professionally as a piece of a larger puzzle of ending homelessness by organizing people to come together to change systems and advocate for social justice. Cody is a Fargo Housing and Redevelopment Authority Commissioner and serves on the boards of directors for the Fargo Downtown Neighborhood Association and The Human Family.

AUGUST 2021

August 1, 2021, 11 a.m. - Community with Matthew Lindholm (in the FMUU Values series)

Matthew teaches sociology at Concordia College. His interest in the fact and meaning of community started in childhood and continues to this day.  Matthew studied conflicts in inner cities in 1990s, a Muslim religious congregation in the 2000s, and kept looking for and struggling with trust in the possibility of community today.

August 8, 2021, 11 a.m. - Compassion with Michelle Lelwica (in the FMUU Values series)

Dr. Lelwica will be sharing about and reflecting on her experiences working with incarcerated youth—specifically, what they are teaching her about the need for a compassionate approach to justice. What Michelle Lelwica calls “compassionate justice” recognizes and responds to the suffering inflicted by systemic oppression (especially racism, sexism, and poverty) and by the historical traumas that have shaped the lives of youth “offenders.” A compassionate approach to justice is more likely than a punitive approach to encourage accountability because, in the words of one of the youth she's worked with, “It can be hard to take responsibility for things you feel shame [about].” The principle and practice of compassionate justice also underscores the need for accountability to be shared by justice-involved youth and the rest of us, who are often unknowingly complicit with the systems that jeopardize vulnerable youths’ wellbeing.

August 15, 2021, 11 a.m. - Belonging with Jessica Jensen (in the FMUU Values series)

"Joining" is a personal choice to be a part of something. "Belonging" is something different. Jessica Jensen—UU member, scholar, and mother—will share her reflections on this topic.

 

August 22, 2021, 11 a.m. - Spirituality with Patti Prasifka (in the FMUU Values series)

Patti Prasifka is a mom to a lovely young lady, Ada (9), a wife to a great husband, Jarrad, and an entomologist that works for Corteva Agriscience. Patti was brought up in the religious faith of Catholicism but like many at FMUU, the religion of her youth and perhaps religion in general does not fit her worldview any more. Patti knows she's not religious but, is she spiritual? Around a quarter of all U.S. adults consider themselves spiritual but not religious. When some hear “spiritual but not religious” they feel that term is indecisive and devoid of substance, but others embrace it as an accurate way to describe themselves.

 

JULY 2021

July 4, 2021, 11 a.m. - Susan B. Anthony (In The Women On Our Wall Series) with Larry Peterson

“Failure is impossible,” said Susan B. Anthony, women’s suffragist, slavery abolitionist, and convert to Unitarianism. As an orator, she grew accustomed to public hostility. In 1872, she was even arrested in Rochester, NY, for the crime of registering to vote as a woman. She likely never guessed her image would be featured on a dollar coin more than 100 years later. Please join historian Larry Peterson, as we reflect on this complicated and determined historical figure.
 
Larry Peterson is a retired professor of history at NDSU, coordinator of Breaking Barriers: Red River Rainbow LGBTQ+ Seniors Oral History Project, and a newer member of FMUU.

July 11, 2021, 11 a.m. - This I Believe with Tracey Wilkie

A recent candidate for the North Dakota legislature, Tracey Wilkie has been a friend of FMUU for many years, particularly this past year. As an Anishinaabe woman, her roots are at Turtle Mountain, where she has spent a good part of her life. She is devoted to violence prevention, particularly of Murdered and Missing Indigenous People. Her spiritual story is one of transitions, revelations, and moments of synchronicity – like being born in Fargo and recently returning here to live.

July 11, 2021, 11 a.m. - This I Believe with Emma Hetland

Emma Hetland, our Religious Education Coordinator, has known she wanted to work with children since she was a child herself, partly because she is an only child with many younger cousins and partly because she spent much of her childhood in a family member’s in-home daycare. Raised in a Christian church, she came to struggle with that identity, as she began to experience inconsistencies in the messages she heard. She is passionate about social justice and strives to educate herself continually on her own privileges and biases.

If you have come to help me you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together. --Aboriginal Activists Group

"Love is the spirit of this church, and service its law.

This is our great covenant: To dwell together in peace,

To seek the truth in love, And to help one another."

- James Vila Blake