Monday, November 21, 2005

New Submission in Logo Contest

Hello all,

I have received a new submission in the logo contest... This one is actually not in graphic design, but it words....

I put it forth for your perusal!

Basically it'd be a chalice on the left, bottom, with the flame being like an american flag, not the colors only but the top left being blue with white stars and the res being alternating red and white, but still in the shape of a flame, not rectangular, more like the flame is reflecting an american flag. Then an arc of pink hearts would come up to the right from the flame and at the top of the arc would be a camoflage colored dove. So that it would look like the dove flew out of the chalice and it leaves a line of hearts that represent love behind it as it flies. The dove of course represents freedom, the chalice: UU, and the hearts: love.

This came to us from Gretchen McCready. I like the idea of the flame being the flag!

Yours in Faith,


Thursday, November 17, 2005

Military Readiness Act

According to The Servicemembers Legal Defense Network now a full one hundred US Senators and Representatives support the repeal of Don't Ask - Don't Tell and favor the Military Readiness Act which would end discrimination in our military forces based on a individuals sexual orientation.

What is amazing to me is the growing amount of traditionally conservative Congress Persons who are supporting this act. To be honest i was worried that this bill was ill timed. I was worried that presenting it would cause a back-lash against homosexual issues nationwide. It has yet not garnered the type of national exposure many of us expected to see. When it finally does hit the mainstream it will be interesting to see how America reacts.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

More from Fort Drum...

Connie Holberg writes:
All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church in Watertown, New York is the closest UU congregation to Fort Drum, home of the 10th Mountain Division. Our Web site is We have military members too. Unfortunately they tend to move on to other bases, and are also often deployed for long periods of time.

Thanks, Connie! All Souls Watertown is now on the list. That's three "All Souls" with military members.

Monday, November 14, 2005

This next submission in the UU Military Affiliate Organization logo contest that I am sponsoring is coming to us from David Concepcion.

This is exactly why I am glad I put out the call. I would never have thought of turning dogtags into a chalice! How cool is that?

One thing that came to mind in doing this is that, having multiple submissions is a great thing, because just having the logo will not be enough. We will need other graphics as well, for websites and brochures. I am fairly certain that all of these will be used, when I think about it!

Yours in Faith,


Sunday, November 13, 2005

Hello Everyone!

I have received our first official submission in our process of developing and then selecting a logo for the UU Military Affiliate Organization that we are working to found.

This entry comes from Erik David Carlson, one of the founding members of the Church of the Younger Fellowship, and . Erik is also in my class at Meadville Lombard, and will make an incredible minister some day...

Now, these entries are concept drawings... even when we choose one, we are going to want to have a professional graphics artist to create the final version... Luckily, one has offered her services! Thank you Cynthia!

But, when she asked me what I thought such a logo could look like, I simply had no clue. So, I put out the call for logo designs, and thanks to Erik David we have our first entry! As we get more, I will post them here!

Yours in Faith,

David Pyle
Galveston Island, TX

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Another Military UU Congregation

Thanks to Caroline from the All Souls Unitarian Church in Tulsa, OK for pointing out that her congregation has military members, including her son Avery who is in the Army in Iraq. Surely there are more out there - e-mail us and we'll add them to the links section.

Friday, November 11, 2005

What Does Veterans Day Mean To Us

Tomorrow is Veterans Day, it is a national holiday but the only people off work are likely to be federal employees and people who work at banks. Originally called Armistice Day it was meant not only as a celebration of victory of World War I, but as a celebration of the desire and hope that in the future nations would resolve conflicts through peaceful means. We know now that War would come again to our world. So often, in fact, that it is sometimes hard to picture a people actually believing that they had seen the end of military conflict. After World War II and The Korean War the holiday was renamed Veteran's Day, so that we could honor all who have served, and are serving our country. It is a beautiful gesture and last year at this time no less than 3 people came up to me at work and said thank you and shook my hand. It literally brought tears to my eyes. I have a wish though, i wish that on this day we honor each other as veterans and active military personnel, and take pride in our service that we also remember that hope, that desire, that nations may one day settle their conflicts without use of arms. That one day we will honor this day as was originally intended, as a day to look back and say.. Remember when.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Happy Birthday, Marines

On November 10, 1775, the Continental Congress commissioned Samuel Nichols to raise two battalions of Continental Marines. The first recruiting station for what would become the United States Marine Corps was Tun Tavern, a bar in Philadelphia where you can still find cold beer today.

Two hundred thirty years later, Marines serve all over the world and celebrate our birthday and our heritage as "the few, the proud." We just had our cake cutting ceremony here at the Manpower Plans and Policy Division, which I realized was really a worship service.

The word "worship" comes from the Old English weothscipe, the shape of worth. So when we worship, we honor that which has worth - that which is worthy - that which we value. A Marine Corps birthday celebration honors not only our past and history, but the "living tradition" of our Corps.

The liturgy of the cake cutting ceremony centers, as might be expected, on the cutting of a birthday cake. It is much more, however, as the first piece of cake is presented to the oldest Marine present, who in turn presents the second piece to the youngest. This symbolizes the continuity of our Corps and the "passing of the torch" from generation to generation.

The "holy scripture" of this service is the reading of Major General John A. Lejeune's birthday message, written on November 1, 1921, and read each year on this occasion. The "sermon" is the message from the current Commandant of the Marine Corps, General Michael W. Hagee.
The service concludes with the benedictory playing of the Marines' Hymn, and we all get a piece of cake and some punch, in a symbolic "communion of the Corps."

I've belonged to this Church of the Holy Corps for over 17 years. During the last four years, as I've questioned my journey in life, my career choice, and where I'm going, I've often felt like a priest who's lost the faith. On a day like today, however, I feel the same pride I felt when I became a Marine, and tears well up unbidden when I hear the Marines' Hymn. As I near the end of this career, I wonder if I'll always have this reaction on November 10th.

I guess I probably will - as they say, once a Marine, always a Marine.

Semper Fidelis, and Happy Birthday.

Coalition Forces, Iraqis Open Soccer Field

This article is from I don't normally agree with a lot of the site, but this article caught my eye.

TALL AFAR, Iraq, Nov. 8, 2005 — Coalition forces, in cooperation with local residents, constructed and opened a soccer field at the Al Zahawe School in the neighborhood of Sarai here, Nov. 5.

"It is basically a goodwill gesture from the coalition forces to the Sarai neighborhood," said U.S. Army Capt. Ryan Hambleton, a team leader in the 401st Civil Affairs Battalion.

Sarai, a Sunni area, was one of the more deeply effected neighborhoods during the military actions in early September.

With over 50 children attending the opening of the "football" field, the day was filled with the joyous yelling, laughter and soccer.

Elements from the 2nd Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division and 3rd Armored Calvary Regiment assisted elements of the 401st Civil Affairs Battalion, who coordinated the event.

A flatbed tractor trailer brought the newly constructed goal posts to a dirt field located behind the school where they were soon put into place at opposing ends.
Carefully laying down lines of chalk, a local Iraqi man marked the boundaries and goal lines of the field.

Nets donated by Presbyterian College in South Carolina were strung up with black wire ties after a team effort by the children to reach the top of the post.
Once the field was ready for play, the anticipation increased as the children waited for a soccer ball. Lined up against a wall, the children waited anxiously for the battalion commander of the 2nd Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment and an Iraqi general to open the field.

As several paratroopers and Iraqi policeman took to the field to challenge the children in a friendly game, the field was officially opened.
The children of the neighborhood were given ten balls by the coalition forces to use on their new field.

A similar project is in place to create a soccer field in a Shiite populated neighborhood.

The first thought that came to my mind is.. Why the hell are we not supporting these kinds of efforts? The truth is, regardless or not if you supported the US invasion of Iraq, we are there and we need to do everything we can to fulfill the mission and get out. We also need to leave Iraqis with some sense that those of us back in the States do want them to succeed and do want them to be free.

Now i do know that getting any kind of congregational agreement that even hints at supporting the war would be damn near impossible, that is why we need an affiliate or office of military ministry. I imagine a lot of UUs would get on board if they had an institution to do so with.

Service is Our Prayer

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

New Member Checking In


I just wanted to take a second and introduce myself. My name is Jamie and i live with my partner of 5 years in Wadsworth, OH. I am a member of the UU Church of Akron, and The Church of the Larger Fellowship. I have a new personal Blog as well called Trivium. I am also a lister and on the UUMil- l.

I am a veteran, having served in the US Army Reserves from 1991 till 1999. My MOS was 63D10 (Self-Propelled field artillery Systems Mechanic). My original unit (3/92 FA) was comprised M110 Howitzers. My primary role was as a recovery vehicle operator. In that capacity i was the driver/operator of M88 and M578 recovery systems.

I have a real desire in supporting our Military both within our UU congregations and in the world at large.

Until Then, and Always

Monday, November 07, 2005

Logo Contest for a UU Military organization.

Hello all!

Well, there are good things afoot! As many of you know, from our experience at the 2005 General Assembly, a determination was made that the UUA needed an affiliate organization (and perhaps eventually an official UUA Office) to support and minister to UU Military Members, Veterans, Families, and DoD employees.

There is some work and coordination being done on this, but I wanted to put out a call. Every UU Organization needs a logo. In fact, the flaming Chalice that is so loved in our denomination began as the logo for the Unitarian Service Committee. It became famous as it was stamped on the side of relief supplies sent out by the USC, and then the UUSC.

But, as everything in our faith, the process to decide upon such a logo should be democratic. First however, we need some submittals. The logo should be based upon the chalice, but should also encorporate the Defense and Military of our nation.

I do ask one favor. If you take on this challenge, please do so in love. Most of us UU's who have been or are currently associated with the Military have experienced prejudice within our own denomination. This is partially our fault, because we have failed to educate some of our fellow UU's on what it means to be a Military UU. Our formation of an Affiliate organization within the UUA is a first step in not only helping our fellow UU's to understand those of us who also serve in the military, but also to be an organized voice for liberal faith within our military, something that is desperately needed.

Now, to kick this off, I will show you all the logo that was used on the program of the "UU's in the Military" Program at General Assembly this year.

Click on the below link to see it!

So, get creative! If your logo is selected, I will personally buy you a coffee cup with the logo you designed on it!

Please send any submissions to me at .

Yours in Faith,
David Pyle
UU Fellowship of Galveston County