“Stepping Into the Shade” — A Sneak Preview and Panel Discussion

Stepping Into the Shade: Tobacco’s Connection to Civil Rights

Feb. 6th at 1:00 PM

Join us at 1:00 on Sunday afternoon, February 6th for a sneak preview and panel discussion of footage from “Stepping Into the Shade: Tobacco’s Connection to Civil Rights.” This event is free and open to the public. Zoom login information will be published in our regular UUS:E eblasts or can be obtained by contacting the UUS:E office at (860) 6460-5151 or [email protected]. If public health conditions allow, a limited number of people will be welcomed into our sanctuary to attend the event in person.


A January press release from Eastern Connecticut State University announced that the school “has been awarded $35,000 by Connecticut Humanities to produce a documentary about Connecticut’s shade tobacco industry and its connection to the civil rights movement. ‘Stepping into the Shade: Tobacco’s Connection to Civil Rights’ will be a six-part mini-series hosted by Connecticut entertainment producer June Archer.” And further: “Filmmakers Kristen Morgan [UUS:E member] and Brian Day, theatre professors at Eastern, are at the beginning stages of the production process and seeking information from anyone with family connections to tobacco farms in Connecticut. They are hoping to speak with migrant workers or relatives of the students from historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) who came North for summer work on the farms. The most notable such worker was Martin Luther King Jr., who spent a summer on a Simsbury farm in the 1940s through a program with Morehouse College in Georgia.”

This project is exciting! UUS:E is blessed to have the opportunity not only to learn about a forgotten piece of 20th-century Connecticut history, but to get an inside look at the film as it is being made.

Questions? Contact Rev. Josh Pawelek at [email protected].

Prayer Vigil in support of Domestic Workers

UUS:E’s Rev. Josh Pawelek is co-leading a prayer vigil in support of immigrants and domestic workers outside of Senator Blumenthal’s Hartford office (90 Statehouse Sq.) on Tuesday, December 21st at noon. All are welcome!

Diet for a Small Planet 50th Anniversary Edition

Book Discussion
Diet for a Small Planet 50th Anniversary Edition

Sunday, December 11, 1:00-2:00 p.m.

Join the Sustainable Living Committee for a lively discussion of Frances Moore Lappe’s groundbreaking book which sparked the vegetarian movement in 1971. But it’s more than a diet! Lappe, who is also a Unitarian Universalist, shows us how “plant-centered eating can help restore our damaged ecology, address the climate crisis, and move us toward real democracy.” Contact Mary Lawrence ([email protected]) to register. Info: https://www.dietforasmallplanet.org

COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic

In partnership with Community Health Center, Inc. and the Community Renewal Team, UUS:E will host a vaccine clinic from 1:00 to 5:00 on Thursday afternoon, December 16. This effort is part of our congregation’s commitment to helping increase the number of vaccinated people in the wider community. While this clinic will be open to the general population in our area, UUS:E members and friends are welcome to register for a shot. The clinic will be offering first and second doses and booster shots for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Watch our eblasts for registration information. Questions? Contact Rev. Josh at [email protected] or 860-652-8961.

Manchester Interfaith Thanksgiving Service

UUS:E members and friends are warmly invited to attend Manchester’s Annual Interfaith Thanksgiving Service on Sunday, November 21st, at 4:00 PM. This year’s service will take place online and is hosted by Temple Beth Shalom / B’Nai Israel. Watch from the comfort of your home at https://www.myshul.org/livestream. This year’s service will feature a keynote address by Manchester resident, teacher, and newly elected president of the Connecticut Education Association, Kate Dias. UUS:E member Jenn Richard will present a number of musical selections.

Watch from the comfort of your home at https://www.myshul.org/livestream.

A Special Virtual Musical Event!

Lara Herscovitch

Returns for Virtual Benefit Concert at UUS:E

December 4, 2021 at 7:00 PM

Join UUS:E on Zoom to enjoy a live benefit by Lara Herscovitch, former Connecticut State Troubadour. Revel in meaningful and uplifting music by Lara , while you lift Manchester’s youth through donations to Power Up CTs youth program, Empower U.

Lara Herscovitch, singer-songwriter-poet-performer, leads with authenticity, integrity, humor and heart. Acoustic Live in NYC says, “She possesses not only a huge reservoir of musical talent and a voice with a bell-like clarity, but a keen sense of global concern and a fierce intellect… It might seem too good to be true, but true it is.” Her decades-long connection with social justice and the needs of disenfranchised youth match perfectly with Empower U. (http://laraherscovitch.com/)

Proceeds will be donated to Power UP CTs program for Black and Brown Youth in Manchester, Empower U, offering our youth a variety of resources and activities as they recover from the pandemic and systemic racism. Power UP CT amplifies voices within marginalized communities, fosters positive health outcomes and civic engagement, and advocates for social change in Manchester and Connecticut.

To donate and receive your ticket with Zoom link go to: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/lara-herscovitch-in-concert-a-fundraiser-for-empower-u-manchester-tickets-191746487907

Suggested donation: $10.00

For any questions about the concert or Eventbrite, email [email protected]


Outdoor Tag Sale

Unitarian Universalist Society: East Tag SaleUnitarian Universalist Society: East
Outdoor Tag Sale

Saturday, September 18, 9 AM – 2 PM (Rain date September 25)

Come find your new treasures!

153 Vernon Street West, Manchester, CT * 860.646.5151

Click here to download the poster and post it around your neighborhood or work. 

Outdoor Tag Sale is fast approaching and we need your help!

  • Set-up day of sale – PLEASE! Starting at 7 AM Saturday
  • Work at the sale on 9/18 – one hour shifts or more
  • Break-down day of sale
  • Take leftover items to donate

Contact Marcie Brown & Sandy Karosi

Let’s Take AIM at Accessibility




It’s been more than a decade since UUS:E last had a fully functioning Accessibility Committee. In those intervening years the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) has learned much about how to address ableism in our congregations, and how to expand our accessibility to people with a wide variety of disabilities. Given that UUS:E is now in the midst of planning for re-opening following the coronavirus pandemic, this may be a perfect time for us to consider how we enhance our accessibility to people with disabilities. Interested? Read on….

In partnership with the UUA, EqUUal Access, a UU disability rights and inclusion organization, has developed the Accessibility and Inclusion Ministry or AIM. AIM is a certification program. Its purpose is to guide congregations to better welcome, embrace, integrate, and support people with disabilities and their families in our communities. AIM attempts to meet each congregation where it is and move it forward at a reasonable pace based on its resources, needs, and abilities, regardless of membership size or type of building.

The UUS:E Policy Board is empowering a team to study the AIM program and make recommendations as to how UUS:E can pursue certification. If you would like to be part of this study team, please contact Policy Board Member at Large, Peg Darrah ([email protected] or 603-540-6495).

Let’s Talk About What We’ve Learned

An invitation to Dialogue from the Rev. and the DRE

UUS:E’s meeting house remains closed to in-person activity, but we are slowly beginning to imagine how to reopen later this year. While the Unitarian Universalist Association continues to advise congregations to carry on with virtual activities until the coronavirus is fully under control, they are also sharing various models for how to reopen. Our UUS:E Emergency Preparedness Team is reviewing these models and will be making recommendations to the Policy Board in the coming weeks.

As part of the reopening process, we–Gina and Rev. Josh–feel it is critical that we as a congregation learn as many lessons as possible from our pandemic experience. Who are we becoming given what we’ve been through? To explore this question,  we have scheduled four meetings over the course of April and early May. Each of these meetings will take place on line, though two of them will also happen simultaneously outdoors at UUS:E if the weather is nice.  Join us for as many of these meetings as you would like:

Tuesday, April 13 at 1:00 PM. Outdoors at UUS:E. Watch the eblasts for login information.

Wednesday, April 21st at 10:00 AM. Online only. Watch the eblasts for login information.

Friday, April 30th, 9:00 AM. Outdoors at UUS:E. Bring your own coffee. Watch the eblasts for login information.

Monday, May 3rd, 7:00 PM. Online only. Watch the eblasts for login information.

We will be inviting people to respond to the questions listed below from the nationally-known congregational consultant, Susan Beaumont. Note: these may not be the only questions we discuss. You may have other questions. If so, we are happy to include your questions in the conversation. The important thing is that UUS:E members and friends have an opportunity to discern together what we’ve learned from more than a year of pandemic. Here are Beaumont’s questions:

  • What were we on the verge of discovering or accomplishing before the onset of the pandemic?
  • What was possible before that may not be possible for some time—if ever?
  • What seemed important before that feels superfluous now?
  • What was undervalued before that may hold greater value now?
  • What mattered about geography before that no longer matters?
  • What new abundance are we experiencing now?
  • Where are we experiencing scarcity now that was not evident before?
  • What is our greatest asset now?
  • What relationships will we need to build on or strengthen in the months ahead?
  • What unique role might our congregation play in local, national, and even global recovery?
  • What long term changes in the bigger picture would we like to be part of bringing to fruition?


With love,

Gina and Josh

UU Connect with You

Members of the Pastoral Friends Committee would like to invite you to join us on June 18 (Friday) at 9 AM for a gathering for any members or friends just to chat. This meeting will be in person outside at UUS:E or by Zoom. If the weather is bad, we’ll be all virtual. There is no specific topic; we just wanted to reach out. Please join us.