Building covenantal relationships among Unitarian Universalist women that equip us all to be better co-conspirators and allies in the movement for collective liberation.
Our Monthly Reads meet-up allows an entry point into our priority issues and supports individuals looking to build on their understanding to be better allies and co-conspirators. Join us in experiencing some of the latest award-winning books, life-changing articles, and dazzling other media as we use these tools for justice.
The UUWF Monthly Read meets via Zoom on the first Sunday of the month, unless it's a holiday, beginning at 4:30 p.m. Pacific / 5:30 p.m. Mountain / 6:30 p.m. Central / 7:30 p.m. Eastern.
During our Monthly Read gatherings, we will:
The titles curated by the Unitarian Universalist Women's Federation encompass an array of perspectives, genres, and authors, ensuring a diverse and inclusive literary journey. Together, we can create a more just and equitable world.
For our November Monthly Read, we will explore the 2023 Berry Street Essay by the Reverend Cecilia Kingman.
She begins with, "In this country, the impacts of fascism and authoritarianism have historically fallen most heavily upon our Indigenous and Black siblings and our other siblings of color. Far too often, we white Unitarian Universalists have asked our siblings of color to come before us and perform suffering for our consumption. I am unwilling to participate in that kind of harm. Instead, today rather than ask for more labor, we are going to resource those most historically impacted by systems of oppression."
As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these two lenses of knowledge together to take us on "a journey that is every bit as mythic as it is scientific, as sacred as it is historical, as clever as it is wise." (Elizabeth Gilbert).
Drawing on her life as an indigenous scientist, and as a woman, Kimmerer shows how other living beings--asters and goldenrod, strawberries and squash, salamanders, algae, and sweetgrass--offer us gifts and lessons, even if we've forgotten how to hear their voices. In reflections that range from the creation of Turtle Island to the forces that threaten its flourishing today, she circles toward a central argument: that the awakening of ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings will we be capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learn to give our own gifts in return.
JanuaryMonthly Reads takes a hiatus this month. We hope you discover reading on your own that enhances your world.
In A Fire at the Center, Karen Van Fossan takes readers behind the scenes of the Dakota Access Pipeline conflict, to penitentiaries where prisoners of war have carried the movement onward, to the jail cell where she was held for protesting Line 3, to a reimagining of decolonized family constellations, and to moments of collective hope and strength.
Karen Van Fossan will join us live on Zoom for discussion during this Monthly Reads.
March 3rdFor our March Monthly Read, we will explore 2-3 short articles on a topic. All will be available with no paywall. More details to come.
American culture focuses on letting go of grudges and redemption narratives instead of the perpetrator's obligations or recompense for harmed parties. As survivor communities have pointed out, these emphases have too often only caused more harm. But Danya Ruttenberg knew there was a better model, rooted in the work of the medieval philosopher Maimonides.
For Maimonides, upon whose work Ruttenberg elaborates, forgiveness is much less important than the repair work to which the person who caused harm is obligated. The word traditionally translated as repentance really means something more like return, and in this book, returning is a restoration, as much as is possible, to the victim, and, for the perpetrator of harm, a coming back, in humility and intentionality, to behaving as the person we might like to believe we are.
Unitarian Universalist Women's Federation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.