A Message from Your Minister

Picture of Rev. Nicoline
(Summer, 2022)


It’s summer! Like many of you, I enter this season looking forward to slowing down and reconnecting with people and places I haven’t seen enough of over the past two and a half years. I also hope to simply enjoy all the good things summer brings our way up here in this part of the world where summer is all-too brief.

Summer focus

During July and August I’ll be combining time away with short times in Plattsburgh. I’ll also devote three of the summer weeks to study leave. Study leave is time away built around both reflection, and preparation for the year ahead.

My focus this summer will be on planning several small group opportunities for deepening and connection we’ll be offering starting in the fall. You have told us how meaningful these small group connections are to you, and we have listened! I look forward to announcing the full slate of offerings later this summer.

Reaching out for your input

During my summer weeks in town, I’ll be reaching out for your input in two main areas: support to families, youth, and children, and around how to better create a community of belonging.

Families, youth, and children: we learned not long ago that our fabulous Religious Education Coordinator, Ulrike Galasinski, will be leaving us in the fall. Our RE program will once again enter into a time of transition. Beyond this, since the pandemic, RE has struggled to find its way in all our UU congregations, and this is where your input is needed. If you’ve taken part in RE activities this year, or if you’d like to help shape the future of RE at the fellowship, please share your thoughts and experiences at one of the two RE Focus Groups I’ll be hosting in July.

Community of belonging: our recently adopted 8 th Principle calls us to pay special attention to eliminating systemic barriers to full inclusion and belonging, so that all who seek to participate in the life of this community can feel included in meaningful ways. In addition, without attention, there will always be dynamics at play that make it easier for some people to find their way “in” than for others. In August I’ll host a Focus Group on Inclusion and Belonging to hear from you how the fellowship can do better at offering meaningful opportunities for engagement.

And finally… The climate

It’s not too late to join eight of us from the fellowship’s Climate Justice Squad who will be trying out The Jump’s ‘six shifts to protect our earth and live with joy’. https://takethejump.org

During July and August we’ll see what it’s like to try out these shifts in our own lives. We’ll also meet to share our experiences and encourage one another. We’d love to have you join us!

Dates for your calendar

Rev. Nicoline away: July 4-24, August 1-14, August 22-September 5
Rev. Nicoline in Plattsburgh: weeks of July 25 and August 15

  • Religious Education Focus Groups: Thursday July 28, 4-5 p.m. OR 7-8 p.m., 4 Palmer Street
  • Focus Group on Inclusion and Belonging: Tuesday August 16, 2:00 – 3:15 p.m., 4 Palmer Street
  • The Jump climate justice support conversations: Wednesday July 27, 4-5:15 p.m., 4 Palmer Street AND/OR Thursday August 18, 4-5:15 p.m. via Zoom.
  • Congregational Retreat: Saturday September 17, Twin Valleys Outdoor Education Center. This will be a mostly outdoor, all-ages event. Please plan to attend!
  • Installation Ceremony, in celebration of Rev. Nicoline’s new settled ministry agreement with the UUFP: Sunday October 2, 4:00 p.m., Temple Beth Israel

Who to contact

While I’m away, our Commissioned Lay Minsters will be available for any pastoral concerns: Dorothy Latta (518) 572-7879 lattadm@gmail.com or Nancy Lewin (518) 645-1918 nlewin56@gmail.com

For any other urgent matters, please reach out to one of your fabulous board co-chairs, Connie Shemo (518) 578-9765 shemoconnie@gmail.com or Annette Wells annettepwells8@gmail.com

In the meantime, may you, too, find renewal and blessing during this summer season!

In love and service (to this fragile planet, and to our common flourishing),

Rev. Nicoline