August 2020 at the Dublin Unitarian Church
She’ll come at dusky first of day,
White over yellow harvest’s song.
Upon her dewy rainbow way
She shall be beautiful and strong.
The lidless eye of noon shall spray
Tan on her ankles in the hay,
Shall kiss her brown the whole day long.
I’ll know her in the windrows, tall
Above the crickets of the hay.
I’ll know her when her odd eyes fall,
One May-blue, one November-grey.
I’ll watch her from the red barn wall
Take down her rusty scythe, and call.
And I will follow her away.
Francis Ledwidge (1887-1917)
Greetings from Dublin Unitarian Church.
A lot of work was done during June by many members of the church and committee to put the congregation into a position where we could open the church for Sunday and Wednesday services from 5th July. Although our “normal” has undoubtedly changed, it’s great to be back in the church. Thanks are also due to Josh, Will & Tony who have kept the online presence both on Sundays and throughout the week for those who are not yet comfortable to venture into town. It’s a learning process but, a month in, we’re getting better at it by the week and enjoying the process. We are also delighted to be able to reach people who don’t live in Dublin or, even, Ireland so we hope to be able to continue some sort of online broadcast into the future even when the pandemic ceases to be a threat.
For those of us who are venturing into St. Stephen’s Green on a Sunday, it is fun to be back in and seeing and meeting each other again. In place of coffee, many members of the church in attendance are sauntering across to the park and enjoying coffee and picnic from flasks and picnic hampers. Necessity is the mother of invention. Online congregation members are welcome to join each other too for Virtual Coffee. Will – and sometimes Tony – are delighted to see you and find out how you are getting on. It’s also a great way of passing on news and recommendations for things to do during this crazy and often lonely time.
Attendance at the church is necessarily limited at this time – soon we will hopefully able to relax these restrictions. In the meantime, we ask that if you are not a regular congregation member, please refrain from coming in and continue to enjoy the services online either live via Zoom or as podcasts (to be uploaded in the days after the services) while we get settled with the new setup. To view the service live, click here to go to Zoom to attend the service, but not until after 10.50 on any particular Sunday morning. You will be muted on arrival to assist with the clean broadcast of the service. You are asked to remain muted for the duration of the service. You are also welcome to switch off your video at this time. Just don’t forget to turn it back on (and unmute) for Virtual Coffee. It will follow immediately and seamlessly after the service. We are taking all feedback about the Zoom broadcasts and trying to act on it to create a comfortable listening experience for the service – it is a new discipline for us so please be patient while we figure out the best procedures to get the service to you.
Services for August // Sundays at 11am
2nd – I Am My Brother’s Keeper – Rev. Bridget Spain
9th – Four Religious Figures – Rev. Bridget Spain
16th – service led by Will O’Connell
23rd – service led by Andy Pollak
30th – Grace And Blessings – Rev. Bridget Spain
Our Wednesday lunchtime services of reflection (1.05 to about 1.40 followed by a cup of tea) have also resumed. Pam McCarthy leads these service and all are welcome to attend.
All concerts in the church booked to happen between now and October have been cancelled or postponed. The plan, as of now, is to not take any further bookings for concerts until the picture is very much clearer regarding how to safely proceed.
Thanks to Pam McCarthy for keeping the ball rolling during Rev. Bridget Spain’s recent spell in hospital. You will note from the service list above that Bridget is back taking services this week – we trust that her healing is working away and she’ll be moving around as quickly as ever soon. Bridget and Aidan Driscoll took services at the start of the month and we also thank Gavin Byrne, Madeline Stringer, Gráinne Carty, Andrew Connolly, Dorene Groocock and Josh Johnston for contributing to services in July. You can hear podcasts and full recordings relating to all these services at our Recordings page. The podcasts are also available from the I-Tunes Music Store.
Our ongoing series of short daily services of worship and reflection also continues, led by Bridget. You can see them on a page dedicated to Daily Services
Tony Brady has moved his Mindfulness Meditations group to Zoom – if you’re interested in being part of this, please make contact and your details will be forwarded to Tony.
The August edition of our monthly magazine Oscailt is now out and is posted on the church website (as well as via that link there).
The Book Club is still running on the last Wednesday of every month thanks to Zoom software and they are always happy to meet new people. This month (26th August) they are meeting to discuss A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Blackman. Contact us here if you would like to get involved.
There are other church clubs that are also discussing, amongst themselves, how best to tentatively start going again from September. We look forward to bringing you this news next month.
Enjoy the relaxed restrictions on our movements and actions but please remember that it is by our personal and collective endeavours to follow the government and HSE guidelines that we can prevent a deadly second wave of the virus and get back to some picture of normality – even if it’s a new normality – as soon as possible. We look forward to getting out and about again, back to the church, the beach, the mountains, the parks, anywhere that represents a new picture and fresh sources of air. We also hope that everybody can observe social distancing and stay safe, positive and calm at this still confusing time.
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Dublin Unitarian Church
112 St. Stephen’s Green West