First UU Columbus

A Welcoming Congregation

Thursday, October 08, 2015


First Unitarian Universalist Church of Columbus is a place where people on a variety of spiritual paths come together to grow in religious depth.

Our congregation lifts up our lives within community so that we may feel ourselves more deeply rooted and connected to our earth and the wider circle of beings.  We are empowered by our commitments to greater loving, wider justice and deeper happiness.

Please join us as we create community, grow in spirituality, practice charity and work for social justice. We welcome you in your struggles, your doubts and your dreams.


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All Are Welcome

rainbowAs a "Welcoming Congregation",
we have formalized our commitment to be inclusive and expressive of the concerns of bisexual, gay, lesbian, and/or transgender persons at every level of congregational life.

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October Construction Update

IMG 0044 1The First UU construction project is finally making good progress.  In the past few weeks we have seen seen concrete workers, plumbers, framers, electricians and other trades descend on the project. Floors and hallways are poured, framing of the restrooms and hallways is done, plumbing is installed and work has begun on the classroom addition.  As you can see in the photo to the left, foundation and steel framing are in place!

At our regular monthly meeting with the contractor, architect and others, there was general optimism that the scheduled end of October completion of the restrooms, hallways and Rooms 7 and 8 is realistic. The schedule also calls for completion of the new classroom wing at the end of next January.

And, although unexpected problems have raised costs in some areas, we are still well within the contingency funding budgeted for such occurrences.

In other exciting news, we have signed off on the design contract for the installation of solar panels on the Gallery and Worship Center roofs. Installation is expected to be completed in November. These panels will supply a relatively small part of First UU’s electricity (6kW or approximately 5% of current use), but it is first step towards an expanded array in the future.  Not only do solar panels provide both clean and “free” electricity, but they serve as a visible statement of green building and commitment to earth stewardship.  We hope this will inspire others to consider solar and energy efficiency at their homes and places of business.

Keeping in mind the commitments made during the Green & Growing Capital Campaign, we have tried to make this project as environmental friendly as possible.  In addition to the solar array,  the following items have been incorporated into project design.  Lighting uses high efficiency LED technology and, where possible, natural light.  Materials have been chosen with considerations of local sourcing, earth friendliness and energy efficiency such as coated and insulated window glass and modern HVAC technology.  Rain water will feed our new landscaping and reduce the use of irrigation while new permeable pavement reduces surface water runoff.  These are a few of the more visible steps we’re taking to honor our UU Seventh Principle and do our part to combat climate change.

Finally, as many of you have noticed, the portable temporary restrooms have been replaced. The previous ones, while luxurious, were a constant source of problems. We hope these new ones will be less troublesome and serve us well for the remainder of the month until our new restrooms are ready.

Please do come and talk to us or email if you have any questions.  We would love to hear from you!

Dave Richter,
Chair, Construction Committee
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Brian Hagemann,
Church Administrator
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Green Activities at First UU

greenchaliceFrom the Green Team: First UU is on a journey to achieve certification as a "Green Sanctuary" under UUA criteria. The Board of Trustees has designated the church's Green Team as coordinator of this effort.  For more information on this initiative, check out the UUA's Green Sanctuary Program here.

Other new activities of the Green Team include LED Lighting renovation, pursuit of solar panels for electric generation on site and other aspects of a proposal that First UU become a carbon-neutral facility.  LEED certification for Existing Buildings is also being looked at.  With these efforts and others we can live out our 7th prinicipal as we look to educate and address climate change in the way we do business.

All church members and organizations will be invited to participate, and the Green Team is looking for ideas and hands as we move toward a more sustainable church operation.  Please help us by becoming part of this effort!  Contact Brian Hagemann This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it to get 'plugged in'.


Elevator Speeches from First UU members

We teach our children a greeting: Welcome to Unitarian Universalism. We are the people of the open mind, the loving heart and the helping hands.  We value open-minded theologies without creeds or dogma but rather with questions and doubts. We love justice and work to be in respectful relationship with others.  With no claims to any definitive theological answers, we focus on making a hands-on difference here and now, reaching out to ally ourselves with others.
Susan Williams