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UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST CHURCH

OF THE DESERT


SPRING 2021 EDITION

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Join us in April and May as we explore trans-gender perspectives. In June we will discuss the UUA Common Read.

April

Book Discussion

April 13 @ 10 am - Noon

Facilitator: Peter Mathews

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Find the book at these independent booksellers

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This Is How It Always Is

by Laurie Frankel


In recent years we’ve seen an increasing number of memoirs from transgender individuals and from parents forging uncharted waters in order to help their transgender children live happy, healthy lives in a society that still largely defines gender by what’s in your pants. In her novel This is How It Always Is Laurie Frankel takes those real-life experiences and puts them into a big-hearted story of family and secrets. When Rosie and Penn and their four boys welcome the newest member of their family, no one is surprised it’s another baby boy. But Claude is not like his brothers. When he grows up, Claude says, he wants to be a girl.


The nuances and unforeseen pitfalls of trying to protect your child from fear and hate while nurturing a sense of acceptance is daunting. What is private and what is a secret, and what is, really, nobody’s business? Sometimes secrets have a way of materializing in the blink of an eye or the span of an innocuous question, and this novel is about the lengths we will go, as parents and siblings, to protect each other.





May

Film Viewing and Discussion

Date and Time TBD

Discussion Leader: Luchina Fisher, Director


Mama Gloria

A Film Directed by

Luchina Fisher

This event will be a fundraiser for a local LGBTQ Organization.


Synopsis


Mama Gloria is a feature documentary about Gloria Allen, a trailblazing 74-year-old Black transgender activist who started a charm school for homeless trans youth and is now aging with joy and grace. It is the story of a mother’s love -- the love that Gloria’s mother had for her and the love that Gloria has for her chosen children. And it is fueled by the love that filmmaker Luchina Fisher has for her teenage transgender daughter, Gia.


At a time when Black transgender women face escalating violence and make up the majority of transgender people murdered each year, Gloria’s story is an inspiring portrait of aging seldom seen.

Director's Statement


I was introduced to Gloria because she was looking for someone to help her write her memoir. But after meeting her, I knew that her story would speak to people, because it spoke to me.


As a Black woman filmmaker raising a biracial transgen­der daughter, I see Gloria’s story through a unique lens. For me, it’s personal and it’s urgent. One day while I was filming Gloria in Chicago, my daughter sent me a text say­ing that her life was “half way done.” Gia had read online that the average life expectan­cy for a Black trans woman in Washington D.C., was 32. It was at that moment that I truly understood why I am making this film.


It’s a gift that I want to show my daughter and other young trans people -- so they can imagine themselves growing old and having a long, mean­ingful life. 




This event is a fundraiser for

Safe Schools Desert Cities

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(click on the logo for more information)

June

Book Discussion of the

UUA Common Read

June 15, 10 am - Noon

Discussion Leader: Fran Hoag

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Find the book at these independent booksellers

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What Is a Common Read?


A Common Read invites participants to read and discuss the same book in a given period of time. The UUA Common Read can build community in our congregations and our movement by giving diverse people a shared experience, shared language, and a basis for deep, meaningful conversations.

Breathe: A Letter to My Sons

by Imani Perry


Emotionally raw and deeply reflective, Imani Perry issues an unflinching challenge to society to see Black children as deserving of humanity. She admits fear and frustration for her African American sons in a society that is increasingly racist and at times seems irredeemable. However, as a mother, feminist, writer, and intellectual, Perry offers an unfettered expression of love—finding beauty and possibility in life—and she exhorts her children and their peers to find the courage to chart their own paths and find steady footing and inspiration in Black tradition.

Video profile of Breathe author and Princeton professor Imani Perry, produced by The Guardian (2020)

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Caring Workshops

Care Team members and all congregants are invited to these Zoom workshops



Can You Hear Me Now? Listening Skills in Community

Saturday, March 27, 9:30am to 12:30pm

Facilitator: Rev. Ian


How do we act as compassionate listeners with open hearts? How do we elicit sharing appropriately? How do we provide a loving presence in crisis and every day? Join Rev. Ian as we explore these questions and build some skills.






Boundaries in Community

Saturday, April 17, 1 to 4pm

Facilitator: Rev. Ian

 

How do we maintain proper and appropriate boundaries when providing care? Where are our limits in terms of our expertise and expectations? How do we assess the appropriateness of levels of care? How do we practice self care, so that our priorities are others’ needs? Join Rev. Ian as we explore these questions and build some skills.