UUFSMA Newsletter March 16, 2020

The Mission of this Fellowship is to serve the spirit as each individual understands it; to serve the educational and pastoral needs of our own community; and to serve our multicultural community through actions that further social justice.

     This is a Notice regarding future UUFSMA Sunday Services
 Due to the arrival of the coronavirus in San Miguel de Allende, we have indefinitely suspended Sunday services and other gatherings sponsored by the UUFSMA.

1. Until further notice, there will be no on-site Sunday Services.
2. We are planning to conduct Sunday Services remotely starting on
March 22.
 Those interested in viewing the transmission of this and future Services should either download the Zoom Cloud Meetings app or go to the 
zoom.us site and click https://zoom.us/j/8101921501 to join (best to sign in 10:15-10:25am).   
3. The March 22 Annual Membership meeting is cancelled, and a separate mailing has be sent with information on absentee balloting. 

4. A separate report from the UUFSMA COVID-19 Task Force with further recommendations is in preparation and will be distributed in the coming days.
A warm welcome to visitors Max Briand, Diana Campbell, Gabriela Cohen, Bryon Frenyea, Cindie McKenna, and Kathleen O'Hara who attended our service on Sunday, March 8th. We hope to see you again once we resume our 'live' services.
          Welcome to New Member
               John Doherty

Q What months do you live in San Miguel?
A Normally October – April (sometimes longer)

Q How many years have you been here?
A 12 years mas o menos

Q Where did you live before here?
A British Columbia, Canada, in the summer and Cabo San Lucas area in the winter

Q What was/is your occupation?
A My wife, Sharon, and I are retired bankers.

Q What activities do you enjoy?
A Helping and serving others less fortunate (especially kids)

Q Family?
A Two adult children (son and a daughter) and five grandkids

Q UU history?
A Only in SMA
              Welcome to New Member
                         Mary Murell

Q What months do you live in San Miguel? 
A I live in San Miguel year round.

Q How many years have you been here?
A I first visited San Miguel 35 years ago and moved here full time 20 years ago.

Q Where did you live before here?
Q I lived in various parts of the northeastern US. My last home was in Easton, PA.

Q What was/is your occupation?
A I started my career as an educator, teaching college and university students. Then I got involved in the business world doing management consulting which I continued to do for the first years I lived in San Miguel

Q What activities do you enjoy?
A I enjoy walking my three dogs and riding my horse in the campo.

Q Family?
A My 95 year old Mom and my brother are my closest relatives and live in Charleston, SC.  They have both enjoyed spending time in San Miguel.

Q UU history?
A I had not attended a UU fellowship until the past year. When I read the weekly articles in Atención, I was interested in the topics that were being discussed so I decided to come. It has been so pleasant to find the open, accepting, warm people who make up the UU in San Miguel. Having done a lot of volunteer work with NGOs in San Miguel, I was also aware of the UU focus on social justice which is very important to me.

Care Team

The two workshops scheduled for March 21 have been cancelled due to concerns over the current corona virus situation. If possible they will be rescheduled at a later date. The Care Team will be in touch with those who have paid in order to refund their money.  We are sorry for this inconvenience!


If you are in need of assistance or know someone who does please contact Francoise or Joan.

If you are in need of a healthcare professional, you will find a comprehensive listing on DiscoverSMA.com under the Business Directory tab, Medical Services. You can search by specialty and/or name, and read reviews posted by others who have used their care.

For pastoral care, please contact Rev. Tom Rosiello -
415-122-2119,  tomrosiello@gmail.com
Françoise: 415 149 3053, francoise.yohalem@gmail.com
Joan Wolf, 415-154-9660, joanwolf@umich.edu 

Calendar of Activities

All are welcome to attend any and all UUFSMA activities. Please join us!

Tuesday Discussion Groups have been suspended indefinitely.


Wednesday Lunch Bunch has been suspended indefinitely.


Saturday Men's breakfast group has been suspended indefinitely.

The Circle Cena scheduled for Monday, April 6, 2020 has been cancelled. We will advise you when they resume. If you have any questions, please contact Arlena Lawrence, lawrencearlena@yahoo.com.


Sunday, March 22, 10:30am


Taking Care of Your Spiritual Heath in These Difficult Times
Rev. Tom Rosiello
with Malcolm Halliday, piano



This service will be transmitted via Zoom. Those interested in viewing this and future Services should either download the Zoom Cloud Meetings app or go to the zoom.us site and click https://zoom.us/j/8101921501 to join (best to sign in at 10:15-10:25am).  

In a matter of a few days our world has changed dramatically. With the spread of the coronavirus, fears are mounting and anxiety and stress are affecting us all. Of course we are all concerned about our physical health and taking the steps necessary to stay healthy. But our spiritual and emotional health are also challenged by this crisis. This Sunday morning, in a service broadcast on zoom from his home, Rev. Rosiello will look at the spiritual side of things: How to manage the fear and anxiety, how to stay together  in spirit even when we are physically part, and even how to find a blessing or two in the forced changes in our lives. This will be a service filled with the message often quoted from Julian of Norwich, "All will be well again, I know".

Our service will contain most of the usual elements including wonderful live music provided by Malcolm Halliday on the piano. You can participate in Joys, Sorrows and Concerns by sending Tom an email with  "Joys and Concerns for March 22" in the subject line and a brief statement of your joy, sorrow, or concern. Tom will read them at the appropriate time in the service. You may send them to him anytime this week and please do not wait until the last minute.   
We may not be able to physically be together but we can be together in spirit and still support each other through these tough times. Please join us electronically  on Sunday and remember to get on the site at 10:15 so everyone is set for a 10:30 start of worship. 

Social Action
The UUFSMA Social Action Committee (SAC) has been in existence since 2002. A large part of its work has involved reviewing and making funding recommendations on grant proposals from local Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs). These grants help improve the quality of life for Mexicans living in and around San Miguel. In 2019 the UUFSMA provided financial support to 11 NGOs with $45,000 USD in grants, representing about half of the Fellowship’s annual income. In addition, each quarter, the SAC and the Congregation help identify organizations with special, often one-time needs, for which the entire Sunday offering is given. We call these donations our “Blue Plate Specials.”

This year the SAC has expanded its activities in several ways by:

* Providing updates to the Congregation before each Sunday offering, detailing progress
grantees are making on the projects the UUFSMA has helped to fund.
* Acting as a conduit to the Board of Directors with information about local social justice
initiatives such as Climate Strikes and Calls to Action on the Migrant Crisis.
* Partnering with members of the Congregation and local organizations to provide small
group discussions and action steps members can take to address Climate Action – the 13th of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development goals.

If you are visiting San Miguel or live here part time, we are interested in learning about the
social action/social justice work of your US or Canada-based congregation. Please feel free to take a flyer from the Welcome Table, share it with folks, and act as a bridge between your congregation and us, so that we can learn more about them and possibly find ways to partner with each other. Thank you!

Meetings are held on the first Thursday of the month at 1:00 PM and all are welcome. For
more information, please contact Rebecca Langrall (rlangrall22@gmail.com).
Proposed Non Profit Organizations Supported
by the UUFSMA in 2020
Caminos de Agua provides open-source solutions related to water quality and quantity for communities at risk on our aquifer in Central Mexico. Grant will fund a full time Community Outreach and Education specialist.

Click on this link for Caminos de Agua's Year End 2019 Message - https://mailchi.mp/2d0d6306e560/do-twice-as-much-good-4724697?e=e29714f28e
Caminamos Juntos helps meet the needs of Mexican nationals deported from the US. Grant will fund efforts to expand radio outreach and community assessment efforts.

Caminamos Juntos Newsletter
CJ Annual Report 2019

Casita Linda builds houses and provides workshops to help improve life for those living in poverty. Grant will fund 62 workshops in life quality enhancement such as self-esteem building, organic gardening, and family communication.
. https://casitalinda.org/.

Click on this link for 2019 Year End News  https://mail.google.com/mail/u/1?ui=2&ik=918a4a7f08&view=lg&permmsgid=msg-f:1651959914596773209
CEDESA  organizes communities for sustainable living in rural areas. Grant will fund six promodores to provide workshops on identity building, the construction of dry toilets, rainwater catchment systems, organic gardening, and community leadership.

Centro Infantil de los Angeles provides high quality childcare (including health and educational needs) to low-income mothers allowing them to earn a living. Grant will fund scholarships for free childcare (infants of three months to four years) for seven children.

El Charco del Ingenio protects and preserves the territory and ecosystem of El Charco, providing ecological, scenic, educational, and historic value to the region. Grant will contribute to the development of a new Interpretive Center to encourage more visitors, particularly

Escuela de Educación Especial offers education to those with hearing impairment aimed at ensuring they become independent, literate, and productive citizens. Grant would go toward part of the salary of the Academic Director, setting up a new hearing clinic, and training

teachers to educate a child who is both deaf and blind.


Feed the Hungry offers school meals, family nutrition education, and community development programs. Grant will fund the purchase of food for 13,000 meals for two schools (20 mothers and 30 toddlers).

Fundación de Apoyo Infantil supports positive lifelong habits through classes for children in environmental education, organic gardening, and recycling. Grant will fund two rainwater catchment systems and 12 ceramic water filters for 12 classrooms in two of SMA’s poorest elementary schools.

Update of activities 2019
Jóvenes Adelante provides university scholarships and support to financially challenged youth. Grant will fund four students who will graduate in 4 – 5 years, depending on their field of study, including the cost of credentialing.

Read the latest JA newsletter by clicking on this link - 
Mujeres en Cambio provides scholarships to girls and young women in rural communities to keep them in school and help them attend college. Grant will fund 13 girls through one more year of junior high school or high school.

Ninos Con Autismo identifies, evaluates, devises treatment plans, and assesses progress for children with autism. As a new organization, these funds will assist with startup expenses.

Patronato Pro Niños provides medical, dental, psychological and nutritional care for children and adolescents from economically deprived families in the municipality of SMA. Grant will fund the Public Health Information Campaign and funding of a psychologist at the clinic.

The UUFSMA Newsletter is produced each week for members and friends of the congregation. Information should be submitted by Wednesday each week to denise.uufsma@gmail.com

Contact Us!

Board of Directors 2019-2020 (as of April 1, 2019)

John Simsarian, President, 154-4771, jcsimsarian@yahoo.com
William Dalsimer, 1st VP, 917-991-7841, wrdalsimer@gmail.com
Chris Chase, 2nd VP, 170-4544, Chris.Chase1955@gmail.com

Jane Wilkinson, Treasurer, 152-8019, jane.wilkinson@gmail.com
Dan Neuspiel, Secretary, 415-154-5021, dneuspiel@gmail.com 
Bonney McDowell, 415-145-7689, miko789@gmail.com
Eleanor Goodwin, 152-5700, epgoodwin@hotmail.com
Jim Harper, 152-2380, smaharper@yahoo.com
Joanna Kafarowski, 415 152 6111, joannakafarowski@gmail.com 
Rebecca Langrall, 415-151-0065, rlangrall22@gmail.com 

If you would like a copy of minutes from a Board of Directors meeting, please contact John Simsarian, President.

Affiliate Minister, Rev. Tom Rosiello, tomrosiello@gmail.com 

                    Committee Chairs and Activity


Pledge Team
Trish Snyder, trishsnyder49@gmail.com
Carolyn Simsarian, 

Jane Wilkinson, Treasurer, jane.wilkinson@gmail.com

Nominating Committee
Francoise Yohalem, francoise.yohalem@gmail.com

Administrator (OOS, website, newsletter, committee & board support)
Denise Galipeau, denise.uufsma@gmail.com 


Care Team
Francoise Yohalem, francoise.yohalem@gmail.com
Joan Wolf

Children's Program
Chris Chase, chris.chase1955@gmail.com

Circle Cena
Arlena Lawrence, lawrencearlena@yahoo.com

Tuesday Discussion Group
Liz Stone, elmendorf7@aol.com

Sunday Services
Paula Peace, paulapeace@bellsouth.net
Cathy Canepa, ccanepamd@gmail.com

Coffee Hour
Peter Podesta, parlino27@gmail.com

Cynthia Sterling, sterlingsilver33@gmail.com

Greetings & Name Tags
Jim Harper, smaharper@yahoo.com 

Membership Services
Chris Chase, chris.chase1955@gmail.com

Neighborhood Groups
Eleanor Goodwin, epgoodwin@hotmail.com 

Order of Service
Denise Galipeau, denise.uufsma@gmail.com

Peter Podesta, parlino27@gmail.com 

Social Action, Outreach and Publicity
Christie McGue, clmcgue@gmail.com

Social Action Committee
Rebecca Langrall, rlangrall22@gmail.com 

Denise Galipeau, denise.uufsma@gmail.com

San Miguel de Allende, GTO, Mexico