Brief congregational news items from the Winter 2013 issue.
The Rev. Dr. Daniel Kanter pedaled from First Unitarian Church of Dallas to Concord, Mass.
The Rev. Dr. Daniel Kanter, senior minister of First Unitarian Church of Dallas, Tex., rode his bicycle 2,307 miles from Dallas to Concord, Mass., in May to raise money that will help the congregation start a Jericho Road Project this fall.
Kanter began his ride May 6, arriving in Concord June 1. The ride raised around $28,000. Jericho Road is a nonprofit that matches white- collar volunteers who donate their professional services to nonprofit organizations in need. The first Jericho Road Project was begun 10 years ago by First Parish in Concord to assist nonprofits in surrounding communities. There are Jericho Road projects now in Lowell, Lawrence, Worcester, and Roxbury, Mass., and in Pasadena, Calif. All were primarily organized by UU congregations.
Kanter said the solo ride affirmed his faith in humankind and impressed on him how much poverty there is in this country. “The people I met are the real story. There were some instant friendships, even among people I didn’t expect to go very deep with, but did. The biggest surprise was the poverty. There are a lot of towns that have been decimated by businesses that, when they left, took the town’s leadership with them. Where there’s a lack of leadership there’s a lack of solutions. That’s really what Jericho Road is all about—giving communities like that a leadership boost.” (D.S.; Full story, May 6, 2013)
A history of First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church of Scituate, Mass., has won the Unitarian Universalist History and Heritage Society’s inaugural Congregational History Prize. Written by the Rev. Richard Stower, the church’s former minister, A History of the First Parish Church of Scituate, Massachusetts: Its Life and Times, is available on Amazon.com or by contacting the author at rstower [at] aol [dot] com.
The UU History and Heritage Society described the book as “a remarkably comprehensive study of a 379-year-old congregation that sheds important new light on every age of Puritan, Unitarian, and Unitarian Universalist history.” (M.B.D.)
This article appeared in the Winter 2013 issue of UU World (page 46).
Please note: newsletter on hiatus
Donald E. Skinner was the founding editor of the InterConnections newsletter for congregational leaders and a senior editor of UU World from 1998 until his retirement in 2014. He is a member of the Shawnee Mission Unitarian Universalist Church in Lenexa, Kansas.
Michelle Bates Deakin, a member of First Parish Unitarian Universalist of Arlington, Massachusetts, was a UU World contributing editor from 2006 to 2011 and a UU World senior editor from 2011 to 2014. She is the author of Social Action Heroes: Unitarian Universalists Who Are Changing the World (Skinner House, 2011) and Gay Marriage, Real Life: 10 Stories of Love and Family (Skinner House, 2006).