Final Service

Our June 13 service, our last of the year, will celebrate the many paths we have walked together during this Fellowship year. Dana Baron and Kelly McCutcheon Adams will lead the service, weaving in the words of Fellowship members describing the hardships, losses, joys and hopes that they have experienced in this most extraordinary year.

Dana Baron is a long-time member of MMUUF and has served in many roles. Now retired, he has recently moved from Essex to Shelburne with his wife Karen.

Kelly McCutcheon Adams has been a member of MMUUF for eight years and is currently serving as the Vice President. She lives in Essex Junction with her husband Paul and their two children, Tess and Rhiannon. She telecommutes to Boston as a Senior Director at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.

Singing for Our Lives

Borrowing the title of a Holly Near song in our UU hymnal, this talk will examine the power of songs and singing. Through the ages and across cultures, people have sung together for social inspiration, a sense of unity of purpose, motivation to persevere, spiritual uplift, mental and physical health, entertainment, and the simple exhilaration and joy that it brings. Historical and personal examples will be woven together with the results of a 2000’s survey that assessed the significance of songs and singing in the lives of the members of the Rutland UU congregation. How have COVID times affected our need for and experience of singing – and especially singing together?

Becky moved from Philadelphia to Rutland in 1993, and joined the Rutland UU Church in 2000, where she served on the Sunday Service Committee for twelve years (always promoting more music!). She’s given numerous talks – both in Rutland and elsewhere through the Lay Speaker Exchange, including today’s “Singing for Our Lives”. The most challenging and rewarding role she’s taken on at Rutland UU has involved resurrecting and directing its tiny, but spirited choir.

Elu v’Elu: The Sacred Power and Limits of Conscience

For three years Rabbi Shammai and Rabbi Hillel disagreed. One said: The law is in accordance with our opinion, and the others also said: The halakha is in accordance with our opinion. Finally, a Divine Voice emerged and proclaimed: Both these and those [Elu v’Elu] are the words of the living God. Conscience is a powerful thing, one that Emerson so famously explored in Self-Reliance. At the same time, a passionate conviction that one is right and doing good and holy work is shared by both the BLM protesters and those who stormed the capital. So Conscience is important, but democracy can quickly be turned by fear, trend or anger. How then do we balance the principle of Conscience when it buts up against other core principles?

Rabbi David Edleson grew up going to synagogue, church, and to Unitarian Fellowships in the deep south.  His experiences of anti-Semitism were also formative. Born into an assimilated Jewish family, David was removed as drum major of the band in high school because parents didn’t “want a Jew leading the band down Main Street.”  He became very active in the Jewish community, was president of his college Hillel at William and Mary, and after living and working as a Jewish educator in Jerusalem, was ordained by Hebrew Union College in 1990. David currently serves as the rabbi at Temple Sinai in South Burlington, Vermont. He grew up in rural Georgia where he met his husband Tim in ninth grade; they now live with their standard poodle Ginsberg in a house they built by hand in Lincoln.