Lifestream at First U – Opportunities for Personal and Spiritual Growth & Social Transformation 

Click here for a pdf of our brochure. Printed copies are available at church.

REGISTRATION FOR ALL PROGRAMS IS AVAILABLE AT THIS LINK.

PROGRAMS STARTING IN APRIL

Brandywine Backgammon
Mondays, April 8, May 13, June 10, 7:00-8:30 p.m.
Helena Miller – Room 28
Registration Required
Backgammon is a two-player board game that involves a combination of strategy and luck (of the dice). This is a meet-and-play activity for anyone who enjoys playing Backgammon, or wants to learn how to play. Participants can socialize and make new friends while learning a new game or improving their skills. Register for this event at this link

 

Book Discussion: The Violin Conspiracy
Wednesday, April 10, 1:00 p.m. -2:30 p.m. – Room 28
Wednesday, April 17, 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. – Room 25
Gerry Konzelmann
Registration Required – Zoom option available April 17 only
Join us, “Friends, Books, Fun,” for a book discussion of The Violin Conspiracy. The novel tells the riveting story of a young Black musician who discovers that his old family fiddle is actually a priceless Stradivarius: when it’s stolen on the eve of the world’s most prestigious classical music competition, he risks everything to get it back. This is a New Castle County Library program. https://www.newcastlede.gov/710/New-Castle-County-Reads

Friends, Books & Fun! will be attending both the Evening and Book Club Breakfast Author Events on April 30th and May 1st. LifeStream has copies of “The Violin Conspiracy” available. Please contact Gerry Konzelmann at FriendsBooksFun@gmail.com if you would like a book. Register for these events at this link

Earth Day Event: Help Native Plants Thrive in Talley Day Park
Saturday, April 13, 10:00 a.m.
Debbi Zarek, Nancy Flanagan and Leah Brooks – Talley Day Dog Park
Registration Required
Join us for a rewarding morning of environmental action and community service on Saturday, April 13, as we work together to remove the invasive plants that threaten the existence of Talley Day Park’s native species. Leah Brooks, a certified Delaware Master and avid eco-gardener, will be on hand to help us identify the invaders and teach us about natives. We will meet at the Talley Dog Park at 10:00 a.m. Please bring gardening gloves and, if you have them, clippers to cut back the invasive intruders. Trash bags, water, and snacks will be provided. This is a family-friendly event, but it is rain or shine. Register for this event at this link

Centering Sunday
April 14, 2024, 12:15 p.m.
Judy Govatos, Rev. Dr. Larry Peers – Brunner Chapel
Registration Required – Childcare option available
Centering is a powerful practice combining meditation, discernment and discussion. Centering can lead us to skillful action in these precarious and precipitous times. Centering calls us out of despair into possibility.
On Sunday, April 14th, we will launch this group by listening to a short story, “Love Letter” by George Saunders. The grandfather in the story is trying to explain to his grandson why he and his grandmother didn’t do enough to save democracy. Maybe you don’t want to have to write one of these letters. At this meeting with Judy Govatos and Rev. Larry Peers, we will determine what interest there is in continuing these Centering times. Register for this event at this link. 

The Unitarian Universalist Religious Path
Tuesdays, April 16, May 14, June 18, 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Rev. Dr. Larry Peers – Room 30
Registration Required – Zoom option available
This course is for those who, whether new or a longtime Unitarian Universalist, who seek a middle ground between the rigidity of religious orthodoxy and the emptiness of a completely secular culture. We will discuss Unitarian Universalism as a way to believe, a way to live, a way to be transformed, and a way to be together. We will use Rev. James Kubol-Komoto’s book, A Liberal Religious Path: A Short Personal Introduction to UUism. The book is available on Amazon for about $8. Register for this event at this link

holiday pot luck 2016Earth Day International Vegan Potluck
Saturday, April 20, 5:30 p.m.
Environmental Justice Task Force – Parish Hall
Registration Required
The Environmental Justice Task Force and the Vegan Subcommittee are excited to host an Earth Day International Vegan Potluck! Join us Saturday, April 20th at 5:30 p.m. in Parish Hall. Bring a vegan dish to share from your heritage (or just a fun international recipe that you like). We are a nut free building and have many members who are gluten free. Non-alcoholic drinks will be provided. Bring your own plates, utensils, cups, etc. for easy clean up. We hope to celebrate Earth Day with a plant based meal with you! Register for this event at this link

Intentional Conclusions: End of Life Planning
Tuesday, April 23, 2:00-4:00 p.m.
Rev. Dr. Larry Peers and Kathie Stamm – Parish Hall
Registration Required
This workshop will focus primarily on helping you plan and think about your own memorial service. Since the service is for the benefit of those who live beyond your death and are grieving, the service is for them. It is helpful to plan what you would like included and to have a document to share with family, clergy and others. Register for this event at this link

 

Look to Poetry
Tuesdays, April 23, May 28, June 25, 7:00 -9:00 p.m.
Sally Elesby – Room 25
Registration Required
A gathering to share in appreciation the wonder of poetry. Participants may bring a favorite poem by a published poet to read; listeners are welcome too. A discussion follows each poem with a focus on how the poem finds and celebrates humanity. (The facilitator can provide poems if needed.) Sally Elesby is a published poet with an MFA in Creative Writing/Poetry – 2018 from Pacific University, Forest Grove, Oregon. Register for this event at this link

Understanding and Responding to Antisemitism
Sunday, April 28, 12:15 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Stephanie Cloud, Meri Weiss
Registration Required – Zoom option available – Childcare option available
There is probably no timelier topic than the current state of antisemitism in our country. As we try to navigate through the world of misinformation and polarization, we will explore what it’s like for Jewish children and adults to go about their daily lives debunking myths and often concealing their religious identity from their peers. As an educator of Jewish children, Meri Weiss has tales to tell. And through frank discussions with her, we can learn what role non-Jews can play in changing this rising tide. Buffet lunch beginning at 12:15.

Meri Weiss is an academic who has spent two decades teaching Jewish culture and traditions to people of all ages in the Jewish and the wider community. Alongside teaching in area Hebrew Schools, she is a cantorial soloist, Holocaust educator, and directs Jewish community programming. Meri is also a Girl Scout Leader, an environmental activist, and a board member of The Brandywiners Ltd. She is passionate about seeking and sharing knowledge. Register for this event at this link

NCC Reads: An Evening with Brendan Slocumb
Tuesday, April 30, 7:00 p.m.
Gerry Konzelmann – Chase Center on the Riverfront, Wilmington
Registration Required
The New Castle Reads 2024 is hosting a presentation by Brendan Slocumb, the author of The Violin Conspiracy. Registration is requested for this event. You can register by visiting, https://bit.ly/NCCReads2024AuthorEvening Register for this event at this link

 

Environmental Justice Task Force Earth Day Art Project
Various Sundays in April
Parish Hall
Have you noticed the “tree” in the parish hall? The Environmental Justice Task Force (EJTF) is constructing a project in the parish hall to celebrate how members and friends are helping the planet, our Blue Boat Home. Please check Enews in the upcoming weeks to learn how you will be invited to write down your efforts at home and elsewhere that are helping to lessen the carbon footprint in the atmosphere. No registration needed.

 

PROGRAMS STARTING IN MAY

Book Discussion: The Man Who Died Twice
Wednesday, May 8, 1:00 p.m. -2:30 p.m.
Gerry Konzelmann – Room 28
Registration Required
Join us, “Friends, Books, Fun,” for a book discussion of The Man Who Died Twice begins when Elizabeth receives an unexpected letter from a long-ago colleague—someone she thought was actually already six feet under. He’s made a big mistake, and he needs her help. But that big mistake involves stolen diamonds, a violent mobster, and a very real threat to his life. As bodies start piling up, Elizabeth enlists Joyce, Ibrahim, and Ron in the hunt for a ruthless murderer. Once again, the Thursday Murder Club must set aside their G&Ts and lemon drizzle cake to avert disaster—can the gang find the killer (and the diamonds) before the killer finds them? Register for this event at this link

Poetry as a Tool for Wellness
Wednesdays, May 15, 22, and 29, 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Rev. Dr. Larry Peers – Room 25
Registration Required – Zoom option available
This new ongoing series uses poetry to find meaning in our lives. Rather than trying to understand precisely what the author may have intended, we will provide generous support to one another as we focus on how poems and words can offer healing and understanding. Based on the work of the Institute of Poetic Medicine, this is not about writing the perfect poem but about finding ways to express your thoughts and experiences creatively and learn from one another. You must pre-register and may attend as many of the sessions as you would like. Register for this event at this link

Soul Types: Connecting Personality Types & Spiritual Paths
Saturday, May 11, 9:30 am (coffee),
Workshop 10:00 a.m. -12:30 p.m.
Rev. Dr. Larry Peers – Parish Hall
Registration Required
One size of spirituality does not fit all. Are there particular spiritual practices that seem “natural” to us? In this workshop, we will explore any connections between our personality type (from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) and our own preferences in spirituality. This is meant to be an open, curious exploration–not dogmatic in any way. Please register by May 5 so that you may receive the link to the MBTI and take it prior to the workshop.
Rev. Dr. Larry Peers is the minister at First Unitarian Church of Wilmington, and has a background in spiritual psychology and is a certified spiritual director. Register for this event at this link

Give Voice to Peace Building
Tuesday, May 14, 6:30 p.m.
Mwan Kamwndo, Kim Tull – Brunner Chapel
Registration Required – Zoom option available
Introduction and invite to the Friends’ Committee on National Legislation Delaware Advocacy team. Learn how to engage with your national representatives and call for peace. We have hosted this program before but the advocacy team needs more members to keep it going. Ideally this is something we could offer to a Zoom audience of Delaware UUs and Quakers.

Mwan Kamwndo – Before joining FCNL in November 2022, Mwandeyi graduated with honors from Columbia University in the City of New York with a B.A. in Political Science. As a student, she worked in youth empowerment and policy advocacy through several projects, including leading an international relations non-profit offering young people the skills and knowledge to engage with global issues.
Kim Tull – Delaware Advocacy Leader and First U Member. Register for this event at this link

PROGRAMS STARTING IN JUNE

UUs and Prayer
Tuesdays, June 4, 11, 18, 7:00 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Rev. Paula Maiorano – Room 25
Registration Required
A three session program of one and a half hours each. During the first meeting, all will share how you pray or do not pray, and the beliefs behind your sharing. Next time, you’ll take a look at what the UUA and other UUs published on prayer and how that resonates with you. The last session is reserved for writing your own prayers. Maximum of 14 participants.

Rev. Paula Maiorano is a retired Unitarian minister and First Unitarian of Wilmington member, whose service included chaplaincy, counseling, full time interim and part time parish ministry, community ministry founder providing services for citizens returning from prison, and inter-faith advocacy for criminal justice reform. Register for this event at this link

Welcome Summer Vegan Potluck
Sunday, June 9, 5:30-8:00 p.m.
Environmental Justice Task Force – Parish Hall
Registration Required
Join the Environmental Justice Task Force for a Welcome Summer Vegan Potluck! Sunday, June 9th at 5:30 p.m. in Parish Hall. Bring a vegan dish to share. We are a nut free building and have many members who are gluten free. Non-alcoholic drinks will be provided. Bring your own plates, utensils, cups, etc. for easy clean up. We are excited about summer! Register for this event at this link

 

Rainbow Energy…The Healing Power of Color
Sunday, June 9, noon to 1:30 p.m.
Stephanie Cloud and Cheryl Sigler – Room 25
Registration required – Zoom option available – Childcare option available
Everyone is affected by color. It is a universal language easily understood on many levels. Discover an effective non-invasive therapy that can be utilized to balance physical, mental, emotional and spiritual conditions. Learn how your clothing, your environment and the foods you eat affect your well-being. Experience practical techniques and exercises that will enable you to open up to the healing color energies that surround you.

Cheryl Sigler is a teacher, intuitive counselor and energy healer. She is certified in several energy and healing modalities. She holds a degree in Pastoral Counseling and is also certified in Past Life Regression. Believing that we are all responsible for our actions, she assists her students and clients in such a way that empowers them to trust their natural wisdom. Cheryl conducts workshops and lectures throughout the tri-state area. Register for this event at this link. 

Book Discussion: The London Séance Society
Wednesday, June 12, 1:00 p.m. -2:30 p.m.
Gerry Konzelmann – Room 28
Registration Required
Join us, “Friends, Books, Fun,” for a book discussion of The London Séance Society: A Novel is a historical murder mystery with a tinge of the supernatural. Taking place in 1873, the novel focuses on Lenna Wickes, a science-minded woman who is investigating the death of her younger sister by becoming an apprentice to Vaudeline D’Allaire, the spiritualist medium with whom her sister Evie also apprenticed. Lenna’s investigation leads her into the heart of the London Séance Society, a group that purports to perform reputable séances for grieving people, often widows who have lost their husbands. As Lenna learns more about Evie’s connections to the Society, she begins to uncover the Society’s dark history and the truth of her sister’s murder. Register for this event at this link. 

ONGOING PROGRAMS
Sunday Forum
Sundays, 9:30-10:15 a.m. 
Jim Davis Room 25
Drop In No Registration Required
Adult Forum is an informal get-together to learn and discuss people and events that formed our society. Recurring themes are: “What Makes Us Who We Are?”, “What is Religion?”, and “What Does Science Say?” A 30 minute video sets the stage for 15 minutes of general discussion. Initial series is “Skeptics and Believers.”

 

Soul Matters, Creativity Matters and Connection Circles
Dates, Locations and Times Vary
Nancy Pinson
Location available upon registration
Registration Required

Our small groups sign-up is very popular and our current Soul Matters and Creativity Matters groups are full. We have openings in a new Soul Matters group that is starting in January and there is a drop-in group on First Sundays after the church service facilitated by Rev. Larry Peers starting in DECEMBER – drop in, no registration required. Although most groups are full, you can still access the sign up form to express your interest in joining a group, including the best days/times for you. To use the form, please Click here. We are looking for additional leadership for our Soul Matters and Creativity Matters program to start new groups; training is available. If you are interested, please contact Nancy Pinson at NancyP@firstuuwilm.org.

Monday Night Yogayoga pose
Mondays 7-8:00 p.m.
Rich Collins
Brunner Chapel
Drop In No Registration Required
Monday Night Yoga focuses on restorative stretching with a concentration on loosening major muscle groups. Participants hold positions and move through gentle, complete cycles. Open to all regardless of ability. No registration required, please contact any of the people listed below if you have questions:
Rich Collins, 302-379-3888, rich.collins@comcast.net,
Vivian Gray, (302) 547-9780, vagray@rcn.com
Michelle Frey, 302-478-4175

Meditation Class
Wednesdays, 7:00 p.m.
Michael Wiedner – Brunner Chapel (on May 22 will be in Room 30)
Registration Required
Meditation is a powerful tool that is available to everyone. It is a practice that helps improve our wellbeing, our outlook on life, and our contentment with our daily living. There are many types of meditation practices. At their core are the themes of concentration and mindfulness.
In time, these practices naturally help one become aware of ways we create our dissatisfaction and make it easier to let go of the habitual thoughts that pull us away from a natural state of contentment. Please join us in our new meditation series. All are welcome, experienced meditator and beginner alike. The sessions will include two twenty-five-minute meditation sessions with a five-minute walking meditation in between. There will be how-to instruction ten minutes before our sessions. Register at this link

Mondays in the Park
9:00 a.m. starting March 4
Helena Miller – Locations vary
Registration Required
Get your week off to a good start with a walk in one of our state, county or city parks. Each week we will explore a different park (or a different trail within the larger parks.) Walks will last approximately 60 – 90 minutes. When you register you will receive notices about the locations. Please register at this link. 

MONTHLY GATHERINGS
Vespers
2nd Wednesday evening of the month, from 6:30-7:00 pm.
Cindy Cohen and Kathy Harris
March 13, 2024, April 10, 2024, May 8, 2024
Sanctuary
Drop In No Registration Required
The services will continue to be based on the Taizé style of worship, featuring candlelight, inspirational music, readings and meditation. We will join together in silent meditation, a candle-lighting ritual, and the singing of short chants and rounds. This unique respite from the hectic pace of everyday life offers restoration, and an opportunity to calm our minds and hearts and nourish our spirits.
Come to find peace, silence and fellowship.

Celebration of the FULL MOON with Circle of the Ash Tree Moon
March 24 at 7:00 p.m.
Faith Whittington and Linda Sanders – First Unitarian Church (various rooms)
Join our earth-centered spiritual group named “Circle of the Ash Tree Moon” and celebrate the full moon with an earth-centered ritual designed each month to celebrate the special meaning of that month’s moon theme. (For more information about moon themes, see Christopher Penczak’s book, “The Path of the Moon”). We usually meet the night before the full moon so our meeting date varies each month. Here are the dates and locations: Brunner Chapel on January 24, Parish Hall on February 23, Brunner Chapel March 24. To express interest and recevie updates on these celebrations, please register here.

Country Line Dancing with Ilana
Saturday, March 16 – 6:30 p.m. social time
7:00- 8:30 p.m. dance
Instructor: Lorraine Cohn  – Parish Hall
Registration required
Are you looking for some fun exercise? If so, Country Line Dancing is for you! All are welcome – singles, couples, and families. No experience is needed. Come learn and enjoy Country Line Dancing with Ilana.
Cost: $5/person Registration required for each date. Please register here. If we have good response to these events, we will offer Country Line Dancing every month in the spring brochure!

Lorraine Cohn (aka Ilana) has been teaching recreational international folk dancing and line dancing in communities and summer camps for adults and children since 1975. She learned most of the dances directly from the choreographers at workshops for dance teachers on the East Coast. For the past two years, she has been teaching dance to retirees for the University of Delaware’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI). Ilana has also learned dances from the “Line Dance King”, Ira Weisburd, as well as from local Country Line dance teachers in Wilmington, DE and Maryland.

Lifestream Summer Camp 2023 Report

Camp was a success, with over 80 people registered! We have a photo report available at this link.

If you are curious about what Summer Camp was all about, click here to view our brochure.