Minister's Post, Fri Aug 27

Dear Ones,

Plans are afoot (and at hand!) for an in-person service on Sep 12 -- outdoors and in the afternoon. Lower parking lot, at 16:30 (4:30pm), to be precise.

The 10:00 morning service will be on zoom, as usual. The afternoon service will feature the same sermon, somewhat different music, and attendees will be invited to speak Joys and Sorrows themselves, as well as offer their reflections at the end of the service.

I'm looking forward to it! Yours in the faith we share,

Covid Review

The Worldwide numbers are not reliable, and likely are greatly underestimating the actual prevalence of Covid-19. These numbers may nevertheless give us an indication of trends.

New Cases
New cases per day, worldwide:
Peak week, Apr 23-29: 828,292
Lowest since peak, Jun 15-21: 360,515
Week ending Jul 24: 530,741
Week ending Aug 26: 654,062

New cases per day, US:
Peak week, Jan 5-11: 255,830
Lowest since peak: Jun 15-21: 11,955
Week ending Jul 24: 55,209
Week ending Aug 26: 153,721

New cases per day, Westchester County, NY:
Week ending Jun 21: 11
Week ending Jul 24: 60
Week ending Aug 25: 190

Deaths per day, worldwide:
Peak week, Jan 20-26: 14,808
Lowest since peak, Jun 29 - Jul 5: 7,687
Week ending Jul 24: 8,217
Week ending Aug 26: 9,876

Deaths per day, US:
Peak week, Jan 7-13: 3,517
Lowest since peak, Jul 2-8: 242
Week ending Jul 24: 322
Week ending Aug 26: 995

Deaths per day, Westchester County, NY:
Week ending Jun 21: 0.1
Week ending Jul 24: 0.0
Week ending Aug 25: 0.3

New cases of Covid-19 are rising. In the US, the number of new cases per day is over 153,000 -- that's almost 13 times what it was on Jun 21. Deaths per day in the US are almost up over 1,000 again -- that's 3.2 times what it was on Jun 21. The delta variant surge is indeed alarming -- though there is a modicum of relief in the fact that while new cases are 12.9 times the Jun 21 rate, the deaths this last week were a much lower 3.2 times the deaths in the week ending Jun 21.

Compared to the peak numbers of new cases and of deaths (which both peaked last January), new cases per day are now up to 60% of the January peak, while deaths per day are less than 30 percent of the January peak.

Be careful out there!

Practice of the Week

Industrial Civilization and Everyone Else.

This week we have an Ecospiritual practice, sponsored by Community UU’s Environmental Practices Social Justice Team. The practice is to explore the issue we could call: “Industrial Civilization and Everyone Else.” Adapted from Rebecca James Hecking.

If the whole world lived a middle-class American lifestyle, it would take more than four Earths to provide the resources. This lifestyle can only be maintained if others around the world do not share it, and instead live in dire poverty.

None of this is the fault of us as individuals. Yet, we do have a responsibility to live with as much integrity and mindfulness as possible in our personal lifestyle choices. We need to say “enough” to our leaders and to the unrealistic notion that our standard of living should constantly rise. We need to say “enough” in our individual lifestyle choices.

Practices that go with this reflection include
1. A mindful fast.
2. Adjust your home altar this month to reflect a consciousness the less privileged.
3. In your journal, brainstorm ideas about possible lifestyle changes you could make.

For a Group Activity, host a hunger banquet. Do an internet search for “Oxfam Hunger Banquet” for all the instructions.

For more on the spiritual practice of exploring “Industrial Civilization and Everyone Else,” see the post: HERE.


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