Posted by Taylor Chazan

Event to dedicate courtyard to Rev. Dr. Jim Nelson: Please be advised that this event has been moved to 3 p.m. on Sunday, April 8. Jim will be attending and we are very excited! More information will be forthcoming here in the eweekly. Many thanks to Nancy Breaux and Mimi Hennessy for chairing this major event of the church year.

Young & Healthy Award: I was very happy to join our longtime member Dr. Shelby Rector to receive the J. Donald Thomas Award at Young & Healthy’s Gala on January 27. (And many thanks to NUUC members who attended!) This award is given “to those whose dedication, perseverance and selfless devotion to the wellbeing of children exemplifies the spirit that led to the founding of Young & Healthy more than 28 years ago.” We shared the honor with All Saints Church, as All Saints and Neighborhood co-founded Young & Healthy, and Shelby was one of the individuals instrumental in that founding. Neighborhood Church made a significant contribution drawn from the previous Sunday’s offering of $2,000 – which was tripled in a match by an anonymous donor! Young & Healthy remains one of our flagship causes in social justice and is led by our own vibrant church member, Mary Donnelly-Crocker. If you are interested in supporting or volunteering at Young & Healthy, please call their wonderful staff at 626-795-5166.

 The CUP narrative continues: We have engaged a fantastic consultant, Katalina Klein, who is very experienced in working with churches and schools to facilitate their CUP commitments and questions. Right now we are unclear on the City of Pasadena’s position on a suggested restriping of Orange Grove Boulevard, and an environmental study of the church for tenant expansion. We have asked to meet with the City to discuss these issues. Adjusting our curfew and attendance numbers on weeknights is contingent on knowing what next steps are needed and remains a #1 priority. I look forward to offering you an update soon.

Millikan Room: As many of you know, Irene Burkner offered a recommendation that the Board revisit the naming of the Millikan Dining Room in Cole House. Dr. Robert Millikan was a distinguished scientist, the first American to win a Nobel Prize in science, and a co-founder of our church, yet also was on the board of a eugenics organization that became a model for ethnic cleansing in Nazi Germany. (I trust I have encapsulated Irene’s points correctly.) The Board asked Ned Racine, who is in charge of the church’s ongoing history project, to offer us a comprehensive history of Dr. Millikan’s life and work. Ned worked with church members Brenda Dillon and Kevin Kroeker to put together this history which the Board will review prior to its meeting on February 27. At that time we will consider renaming the dining room. In the meantime, we have discovered that someone already took the sign down! While I have to admit I was delighted to know that the spirit of rebellion is alive and well at Neighborhood UU Church, this act of conscientious insurrection also hampers the Board in making a decision; how can we take down a sign that is missing? If you happen to be the person who took the sign, could you please put it in my box in the church office marked “President”? It will remain on file rather than restored to its place at this time. Additionally, if you have an opinion about retaining or taking down this sign, please share it with me at president@neighborhooduu.org, and I will pass your thoughts to the Board.

Elevator Saga: Anna Cremarosa, our resilient and thoughtful facilities staff member, has been working very hard on a cost-conscious yet effective remedy to the stagnant elevator in the Programs Building. Replacing the elevator would cost roughly $120,000+, and our reserves are unusually low because of the unexpected expenses of the CUP. While the process has seemed slower than most Congressional debates, please be assured we have a thoughtful professional working on this and in the church’s best interest. More information will be coming soon.

“I’m not being heard”: A longtime member of the church and someone I consider a dear friend said this to me on the church patio last weekend. I temporarily abandoned my volunteer post to engage with her in a conversation that we plan to continue. If you feel you are not being heard, please contact me at president@neighborhooduu.org, or, if you prefer to contact one of our amazing Board members, they can be found at http://neighborhooduu.org/governance/ and their contact information is available through the church directory.