Rev. Joe Wants You to Know

A Cup of Joe
One of the things I’d like to do in 2019 is meet more often with more of you!
If you and I haven’t yet sat down over a cup of tea or a meal for a chat, I would love for that to happen.  And if we haven’t had a chat in a while, it’s time to meet again!

In hopes of making these visits easier to schedule, I’ve started using an online scheduling tool.  You can see when I’m available and schedule a time for us to get together by using this link:  Using this tool lets me make some evening times available as well as mornings and afternoons.
And you can always give me a call, too!  You can ring or text me at 518-290-0284.

So let’s get together!  I look forward to visiting with you soon.
May blessings of love and grace be with you every day of this new year!
Rev Joe

Minister’s Office Hours
Mon 3:00-5:00 P.M., Tues 9:30-11:30 A.M., Thurs 1:30-3:30 P.M.
For these office hours, and other times, please schedule an appointment by visiting Alternatively, you can call or text Rev. Joe at (518) 290-0284.

Give Away the Plate Program

If there is an organization you would like the Social Justice Committee to consider for If there is an organization you would like the Social Justice Committee to consider for the Give Away the Plate program, please send your suggestion to

General Announcements

UU Youth Revival!
Are you a youth yearning for connection with other UU youth? Interested in exploring spiritual practices that help us survive and thrive in the world? Wanting to learn more about justice issues from activists and organizers in the field? We’re excited to announce registration for Youth Ministry Revival 2019: Answering the Call of Love in Bethesda, MA March 1-3 is now open!

Youth Ministry Revivals, or YMRs, are national, weekend-long conferences open to Sr High youth in grades 9-12 as well as young adults and adults who support youth ministry in congregations. We had our first YMR in 2016 in Portland, OR and the second in 2017 in Chicago, IL. For more information about YMRs see this UUA webpage:

Evening Renewal: Sunday, January 20, 5-6 PM – CANCELLED!
Evening Renewal for this Sunday, January 20th, has been cancelled due to the predicted snowstorm.

UUCSS Book Group Meeting
The Saratoga Unitarian Book Group meets on the 3rd Monday of the month throughout the year. We begin at 6 P.M. in the King Room with a light supper brought by members of the group. Around 6:45 P.M.  We then begin a discussion of the book for that month. The discussion lasts about an hour. We are happy to have additional folks join us whether it’s to be a regular participant or a contributor for a particular book. TRY US OUT. Contact Pat Goodale with questions: (518) 584-0588

Jan. 21 – “DMT: The Spirit Molecule” – Rick Strassman

January’s Theme: to be a people of Possibility
It could be argued that “possibility” is a central theme for Unitarian Universalism.  Historically, when others saw depravity and sin at the core of human identity, we saw potential–sometimes with hardly any boundaries. When many were preaching that this world was fallen, and we should look instead to the hope of an afterlife, we found ourselves falling in love with the possibility of heaven on earth. Theologically, you might say that we were the people that believed that God hadn’t given up on any of us and so we shouldn’t give up on each other or this world.

But what about us personally? How open have you been recently to exploring new possibilities? How’s your faith in possibility doing? As we honor our religion’s trust in what’s possible, we need to allow space for the reality that trusting possibility isn’t so easy for many of us.  Here’s how one Soul Matters member puts the challenge:

“When I think of possibility, I think of all the people and opportunities we close the door on. Such as: ‘I will never see eye to eye with my sister.’ ‘I couldn’t possibly leave this job to start my own business’ ‘I will never have close friends like I had where I used to live.’ ‘I will never really make a difference, so why bother?’ ‘UU’s will always be a small faith.’”

We tell ourselves so many small things about who we and others are. And we know that’s not really because we’re pessimistic. More often than not, it’s about protecting ourselves. There’s a sort of comfort in convincing yourself that the work is hopeless; that way you don’t have to try and risk failure, hurt or disappointment yet again.

All of which is to say that maybe being a people of possibility has more to do with being a people of vulnerability and courage than we’ve thought. The work isn’t just about believing in possibility. It’s about being willing to endure a few wounds along the way. It can hurt to be hopeful. Especially with all that is going on in our world and society right now, we need to make room for that.  So this month, let’s not just explore being open to possibility, but the possibility of being there for ourselves and each other as we take the risk of new directions together.

Find inspirational quotes, readings, songs and more on the theme of “possibility” here:

Kudos and Gratitude
UUCSS sure spreads the Love!

Special Reminders

Safe Exiting of the Building
In the event that we need to leave our building quickly, there are three exits: the front door, a door to the left of the chancel, and the office door downstairs. People in the front half of the congregation should exit through the door to the left of the chancel. This exit leads to the playground. People in the back half congregation should exit through the front door. Children downstairs will be led by teachers outside to the playground through the office door.

Safety in the Congregation
Parents and Caregivers, please remind your children to walk inside the congregation building, especially in congested areas such as the stairs and during coffee hour. Also, when children are outside playing they must remain inside the playground. If any member of the congregation member sees a child running or playing in the gardens or parking lot, please give them a gentle reminder to stay inside in the playground for their safety. Our concern for everyone’s well-being is a top priority and it takes a village!

Thank you!


Planned Upcoming MLK Saratoga Events for January
 Please click on the following link for full details of upcoming events by MLK Saratoga
 For more details on MLK Saratoga’s work, and any updated information for events, please visit their website  at

EOC Soup Kitchen Needs Our Help to Stock the Food Pantry
Please help the EOC Soup Kitchen, located at the Presbyterian-New England Congregational Church, stock its food pantry. Place donations of nonperishable food items or financial donations in the basket on the middle table at the rear of the Sanctuary. Your contributions are brought weekly to the Soup Kitchen.

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Connect with a Group

Building and Grounds
Care Team
Green Sanctuary
Religious Education
Social Justice
Welcoming Congregation

Book Group
Inquirers Group
Ladies Who Lunch
Men’s Breakfast Group
Religious Education Pancake Breakfast
Religious Education 4th Saturday Potlucks
Soul Matters
Third Saturday Potlucks
UU Family Hikes


Event Calendar

January 2019

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
  • NA Invitation to Live (rental group)
  • Janice away
  • NA Race is Over (rental group)
  • Men's Breakfast
  • Choir Rehearsal
  • Weekly Housekeeping
  • 1st Sunday Pancake Breakfast
  • CODA - 12 step meeting
  • Augustine Fellowship
  • Chalice Group
  • Saratoga Unites Training Workshop
  • Women's Luncheon
  • NA Invitation to Live (rental group)
  • NA Race is Over (rental group)
  • Membership Committee Meeting
  • Choir Rehearsal
  • Weekly Housekeeping
  • Stewardship
  • RE Committee Meeting
  • CODA - 12 step meeting
  • Augustine Fellowship
  • Saratoga Unites Training Workshop
  • Worship Committee
  • Care Team
  • Finance Committee Meeting
  • Small Group Ministry Meeting
  • NA Invitation to Live (rental group)
  • Small Group Ministry Meeting
  • NA Race is Over (rental group)
  • Men's Breakfast
  • Choir Rehearsal
  • Weekly Housekeeping
  • Social Justice Committee Meeting
  • CANCELLED!!! Evening Renewal
  • CODA - 12 step meeting
  • Augustine Fellowship
  • UUCSS Book Group
  • Saratoga Unites Training Workshop
  • Board of Trustees
  • NA Invitation to Live (rental group)
  • NA Race is Over (rental group)
  • Holiday Fair Debrief Meeting
  • No Choir Rehearsal
  • Weekly Housekeeping
  • Private Violin Recital
  • CODA - 12 step meeting
  • Augustine Fellowship
  • LGBTQ Support Group
  • Saratoga Unites Training Workshop
  • Building & Grounds Committee Meeting
  • NA Invitation to Live (rental group)
  • NA Race is Over (rental group)
  • Choir Rehearsal