We had another wonderful online retreat last month. Rev. Diane Rollert led us into the topic of community, and we continued this path by working together to create our Sunday service. You can read impressions of the retreat here. For me, it all went by too quickly, but those of us who attended can go back to the schedule (or “Padlet”) to see the service again, as well as the wonderful talent show and the presentation from the students at the Unitarian High School in Kolozsvár, Transylvania. I’d like to extend a big thank you to everyone who was involved in preparing and running the fall retreat and especially to the organizers, Shellie Holubek and Matt Gilsenan.
We have another important EUU event coming up, our Annual General Meeting on Sunday, 21 November, at 3.30 pm (CET, the time zone that includes Paris to Prague and beyond). At the AGM, we’ll be electing new officers, discussing next years’ EUU budget, and also considering amendments to our bylaws.
At the AGM, we would like to have an open discussion to learn how members and friends feel about meeting in-person and online. While I have enjoyed our online retreats, and meeting via Zoom lets members and friends in North America join us easily, I really have missed seeing everyone in person. We are planning to hold our 2022 retreats in a hybrid way for both in-person and online participants. As I wrote in a previous column, we’re optimistic in the face of the uncertainties of this pandemic, and we also want to ensure that we are inclusive.
These are important issues, and I hope many of you can join. The AGM is open to both members and friends of EUU. To request the Zoom link, please write to email@example.com.
In closing, while the number of cases in Europe is rising in what is being called the fourth wave of the pandemic, I’d like to mention a cause for optimism: WHO reports that almost four billion people, about half of the world’s population, have now received at least a first dose of a vaccine, and almost three billion have received two doses. It’s still too few, and we know now that the vaccine is not a magic potion that stops the virus completely. Plus, the vaccine has yet to reach most of world’s poorest citizens. But in these divisive times, this is still a remarkable achievement that gives us hope.