Soap Box Sunday

July 2nd, 2017

In opening the floor to speakers, the congregation is celebrating an American tradition - freedom of speech - and putting into practice two principles set forth by the Unitarian Universalist Association:

- We are seekers of truth and wisdom. We believe in the inherent worth of all people and we honor each person and their right to speak. 

- We're an evolving religion and always on a search for our own truths.

For the service on July 2nd: you're invited to spend four minutes max expounding on a matter of heartfelt importance to you (no personal attacks or political endorsements). Come ready to share what’s on your mind and heart, but please email by June 26th to let me know you're participating.  

There are a limited number of slots available in the service so the sooner you give notice of your desire to speak, the better.  (Note: there will not be a chance to respond during the service to our speakers' comments).

To guide you in the writing and speaking process, these suggestions:

·  Tell a story.  Be specific.  Use events from your real life when possible.  Consider moments when your point of view was formed, tested, or changed.  

·  Be brief. The time limit should help you focus.

·  Identify your main point.  If you can't do that in a sentence or two -- well really, you should be able to.

·  Be positive.  Say what you believe, not what you don't believe.

·  Be personal.  Make your essay at least partially about you; speak in the first person.  Try reading your essay aloud to yourself several times, and each time edit it and simplify it until you find the words, tone, and story that truly echo your main belief or point and the way you normally speak.  Then read it to somebody else for their feedback, too.

The July 2nd Sunday service also will include the usual lighting of the congregation's chalice, singing, reflective meditation, announcements and greetings.

Delegates Needed for General Assembly in New Orleans

The board is looking for three delegates to represent our church at this year's General Assembly (GA). GA will be held in New Orleans June 21-25. We will pay delegate registration fees, but delegates will be responsible for travel, room, and board. For more information, including how to get the most economical deals on housing, visit If you are interested in serving as a delegate, please contact Charlie Stewart (pres), David Kashdan (v.p.), or Cindi Huss (past pres.) or email

Annual Church Picnic August 5th

The Annual Holston Valley Unitarian Universalist Church Picnic is August 5, 2017 from 4 - 10 PM. Put it on your calendar! It will be at the Bays Mountain Recreation Area, 404 Bays Mountain Park Road in Kingsport. The picnic sites are 28, 31, 32. Our Fellowship Coordinator, Cynthia Goodman is planning it. She may ask a few people for their help, so be generous with your time!  Also, Sarah White, our Director of Religious Education, will be registering our children for Religious Education for the upcoming year at the picnic.  There will be more info to come! 

New Screens and Speakers in the Sanctuary


LCD Screens and upgraded speakers have been installed in the sanctuary.  

There are 2 LED 70 inch TV screens connected to a computer via wireless modems. A computer is used to generate the text images shown during the service and a remote for the computer is used to advance the slides. These are regular TV screens so movies can be run on these screens though any player that has an HDMI outlet. So we can have a movie nights!

The speakers are the real piece de resistance, by moving the speakers from above the dais we have given our musicians and singers the ability to spread out around dais and not have issues with noise feedback. Our previous speakers were prone to feedback and that is why volume at the church was kept low. We also purchased a 12 inch sub woofer for improved music and movie watching experience.

I hope the new audio and visual experience will help in the enjoyment of the church service. What we have received as a side bonus is more ways to have enhanced fellowship at the church of watching movies and music videos. I'm working on reducing glare when we have such wonderful sunny days during service.

If you have other comments please send them to Greg Kramer,