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In memory of Farley W Wheelwright (1916-2016)

Posted By Administration, Thursday, April 7, 2016

The Rev. Dr. Farley Wilder Wheelwright died on February 27, 2016 at the age of 99.


Farley was born on December 5, 1916 to a family that included four generations of Unitarians. He received a Bachelor of Art from St. Lawrence University in 1957; a Master of Divinity from Hartford Seminary Foundation in 1961; and a Doctor of Ministry from Andover-Newton Theological Seminary in 1977.


Rev. Wheelwright was ordained to the ministry in 1961 by the North Greenwich Congregational Church, CT. He was called to serve as minister to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Central Nassau, NY in 1962. He held pastorates with the Unitarian Society of Cleveland, OH from 1968 to 1972; the First Unitarian Church of New Bedford, MA from 1974 to 1980; and the Unitarian Universalist Society of Sepulveda, CA from 1981 to 1985. The Sepulveda congregation named him Minister Emeritus upon his retirement in 1985. Post-retirement, he served interim ministries at the Unitarian Church of South Australia of Adelaide, SA; Arlington Street Church of Boston MA; and the Murray UU Church of Attleboro, MA.


Rev. Wheelwright was deeply invested in the denomination, and his service extended far beyond the parish. He was a founding trustee of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship for Religious Humanism; President of the Fellowship of Reconciliation (UU Peace Fellowship); co-founder of Unitarian Universalists for Jewish Awareness (with the late Robert Wolsch); Chair of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association’s Ballou-Channing District; Board member of the Unitarian Universalist Retired Ministers and Partners Association; member of the Pastoral Education Network; and Arrangements Person to the Executive Committee of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association.


A staunch social activist, Rev. Wheelwright fought against the racial injustices of the 1960’s. Between 1962 and 1968, he traveled Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia, doing voter registration, becoming more politically radical and being incarcerated more than once. Upon his arrival to Garden City, NY, in 1962, he led the Church of Central Nassau to Washington for the now- legendary March on Washington. He was one of the first to respond to the call of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., to come to Selma, AL in March, 1965. Their friendship became such that three years later, Dr. King accepted Farley’s invitation to preach his installation sermon when he was called to the Cleveland Unitarian Society. Three days before Farley’s installation, Dr. King was assassinated in Memphis, TN.


While serving the church in Cleveland, OH, Rev. Wheelwright founded the Cleveland Clergy Counseling Center on Abortion. All other area UU clergy and many other denominations’ clergy were involved, each voluntarily putting themselves in jeopardy of being arrested and jailed for breaking the law for scouting out-of-state doctors willing to provide safe abortions. Hundreds of young and middle-aged women were sent as far away as London for safe abortions. The group made national news when Farley’s photo in clerical robes made banner headlines reading, “He leads young girls to abortion.”


For all his notoriety as a social activist, however, Farley treasured his career as a pastoral minister above all else. “When I think of an afternoon spent supporting a grieving mother because of the crib death of her two-month old baby, my participation in the social activist movement seems almost inconsequential,” he said. “It is the most exalted job I can possibly conceive of for myself and my talents,” he continued.


Farley and his wife Virginia moved to San Miguel, Mexico in 1993. Both were involved in the Mexican community and with the UU Fellowship of San Miguel (UUFSMA), serving on the board of directors, periodically delivering sermons, and helping shape the Fellowship’s identity in an expat community. In 2015, the Fellowship nominated Farley for the Annual Award for Distinguished Service to the Cause of Unitarian Universalism. Never one to slow down, at age 97, Farley published his first book, Twice-Told Tales, a collection of some of his favorite sermons from over the years. Twice Told Tales is available for purchase on


He is survived by three daughters and two sons: Delia Moon; Cindi Harnicher; Barbara Kafka; John Kafka; and Tom Kafka.


In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Escuela de Educacion Especial ( and/or to Jovenes Adelante (


Condolences may be sent to Delia Moon at 303 Mesa Lane, Santa Barbara, CA 93109.


Swap Farley Stories:  Sunday, May 22nd at 3 PM, Arlington Street Church chapel, Boston. 351 Boylston Street entry.


To remember the Rev. Farley Wilder Wheelwright we shall celebrate a 99 year, illustrious life of wisdom, wit, social action, compassion and more. All with stories and memories of Farley are welcome. Those who cannot attend but want to add their thoughts can send them to
RSVP for the gathering to the same address to help with a count. Direct questions to Mike Ball or George Whitehouse. 

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In memory of Paul Ratzlaff (1945-2016)

Posted By Administration, Monday, April 4, 2016

The Rev. Paul Wilmer Ratzlaff died on February 28, 2016 at the age of 70.


Paul was born on July 24, 1945 to Leslie and Nina Ratzlaff in Kingston, Jamaica. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Warner Pacific College in 1966; a Master of Arts from Colgate University in 1968; and a Certificate from the Stevens Gesner Project to Train Men and Women for the Unitarian Universalist Ministry in 1973.


Rev. Ratzlaff was ordained by the Unitarian Society of New Brunswick, NJ in 1974, and ministered with the congregation for the next six years. In 1980, he was called to the Morristown Unitarian Fellowship, where he served for over twenty years, until 2002. He went on to serve a year of Interim Ministry with the South Nassau UU Congregation of Freeport, NY, and was subsequently called to the UU Fellowship of Huntington, NY, where he served as settled minister for eight years until his retirement in 2012.


Rev. Ratzlaff was very active within the Unitarian Universalist Association’s Metro New York District, and served as chairperson of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association’s Continuing Education, Network, Training, Enrichment and Renewal (C.E.N.T.E.R.) committee. He co-founded the New Jersey Unitarian Universalist Ministers Council, and served as President of the council.


Within the community, Paul held membership with the Executive Board of the League of Women Voters; the East Brunswick Area Clergy Council; and the Morris Area Clergy Council. Additionally, he served an interfaith, interracial organization dedicated to building affordable housing in the Morristown area. While ministering in Long Island, he continued his work in social justice in many areas, including LGBTQ rights, marriage equality, affordable housing, workers’ rights, and promoting understanding and caring among all people.


Of her father, Hannah Ratzlaff writes:


He dedicated his life to social justice and caring for others. He was an incredibly generous and loving person who devoted himself to his family and truly taught me the value of hard work and commitment.  He had an amazing balance of kindness, wit, and empathy which allowed him to see many sides of an issue, often acting as the voice of reason for me.


Paul is survived by his wife, Barbara; children, Hannah (Cory) and Ian (Louise); granddaughter, Giuliana; brother, Dale (Marcy); father in law, Hy; Aunt, Evajoy; Uncle, Sydney; Stepmother, Grace, and many other beloved family and friends.


In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to New York Memory Center or to the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee. 


Notes of condolences may be sent to Barbara Ratzlaff, 557 Atlantic Avenue Apt 2 D-S Brooklyn NY 11217.

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In memory of Orlanda R. Brugnola (1946-2016)

Posted By Michelle Pederson, Wednesday, March 23, 2016
Updated: Wednesday, March 30, 2016

The Rev. Dr. Orlanda Brugnola died on February 24, 2016 at the age of 69.


Orlanda was born on April 1, 1946 to Anthony Brugnola and Kathrine Schwellenbach. She received a Bachelor of Arts from The University of California, Berkeley in 1966, and a Master of Divinity from Starr King School for the Ministry in 1979. She earned certification in mediation and conflict resolution, and in art therapy, and was registered as an art therapist by the American Expressive Therapy Association in 1989. In 1998, Orlanda received a Master of Fine Art in Painting from the City University of New York, and in 2014, a Doctor of Ministry from New York Theological Seminary.


Rev. Brugnola was ordained to the ministry in 1979 by the First Unitarian Church of Berkeley, CA. She served for over thirty years as a community minister. She was employed as a Unitarian Universalist Chaplain at Columbia University from 1988 to 2011; Chaplain for the Arts at Columbia University from 1989 to 1996; and Unitarian Universalist Chaplain at Union Theological Seminary from 2009 to 2011.  From 1981 to 2016, she worked as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice (City University of New York), and taught Philosophy and Eastern and Western Religions. Through John Jay, she taught philosophy at both Rikers Island and a New York residential drug treatment program. Additionally, Orlanda spent several years teaching ministerial formation and conflict resolution courses for students at Skidmore College, Union Theological Seminary, and Meadville Lombard Theological School.


Rev. Brugnola was called to serve as assistant minister to the First Unitarian Congregation Society of Brooklyn, NY in 1981. Between 1981 and 2009, she was affiliated with and held a variety of ministerial positions at First Unitarian Church of Brooklyn. She was voted Chaplain Emerita of First Unitarian Brooklyn in 2009. She went on to hold interim ministries at the UU Fellowship of Poughkeepsie, NY from 2009 to 2011; the UU Congregation of Hudson Valley, NY from 2011 to 2012; and the UU Congregation of Queens, NY from 2013 to 2014. In 2013, she was named Affiliate Minister to the Community Church of New York, and in 2014, she was named Interim Church Administrator. She held both positions until her death.


Rev. Brugnola worked tirelessly to dismantle racism and oppression within the world. From 1991 to 2016, she sat on the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Metro New York District Anti-Racism and Diversity Committee (formally the Racial Concerns Committee), and from 1997 to 2016 she served as an active Board Member of the Clinton Association for a Renewed Environment, an organization that seeks to create affordable housing in New York City.  She served as co-vice president of Diverse, Revolutionary Unitarian Universalist Multicultural Ministries (DRUUMM) from 2013 to 2015. Committed to the betterment of the denomination, Orlanda served on the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Commission on Appraisal from 2003 to 2009, and the UUA Board of Review from 2013 to 2016.


Orlanda was a strong supporter of interfaith dialogue and interreligious peace. She planned many conferences and programs to encourage such dialogue, including the Parliament of the World’s Religions. She served as President of the Institute for the Study of Genocide for nineteen years; and was a longtime supporter of both the International Association of Liberal Religious Women and the International Association for Religious Freedom (IARF).  She sat on the board of the IARF U.S. Chapter, and organized workshops for the International IARF Congress.


A talented studio artist, Orlanda exhibited photographs, paintings, drawings and sculpture in New York, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts.  She created art for most of her life, and her works were displayed in many group shows and over nine solo shows.  Orlanda had over twenty years of curatorial experience. Her aptitude and passion for the arts led her to spend over twenty years serving on the Board of Directors of the American Festival of Microtonal Music, and six years serving as President of the Society for the Arts, Religion and Contemporary Culture.


Orlanda was honored throughout her life for her many contributions to the ministry, academia, social justice, and the arts. She was elected fellow of the Society for the Arts and Religion & Contemporary Culture in 1993, and she was elected as the Artist-in-Residence for the Henry Street Settlement in 1999-2000 and 2001-2002. John Jay College of Criminal Justice awarded Orlanda with a Performance Award for Teaching Faculty in 1999; and a recognition for twenty five years of teaching at the college in 2006. She received a recognition of outstanding service from the International Association for Religious Freedom, U.S, Chapter, in 2006, and was the recipient of the Caribbean America Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc., Business Visionary Award in 2008.


To Orlanda, dear friend Rev. Dr. Hope Johnson writes:


My Friend, you became one of my Teachers, and then became one of my Students, while still being one of my Mentors, and of course always my Colleague. You became one of my Sisters. (And did I remember to say Teacher???)  It was really complicated, but nothing was ever easy, or simple, or uncomplicated with you Orlanda: Minister, Shaman, Chaplain, Family....


Of Orlanda, dear friend Dr. Janice Marie Johnson writes:


Our world lost a bright light, one whose deeds spoke of a generosity of spirit that knew no bounds. Orlanda has been a source not only of inspiration, but indeed of transformation. A woman of many gifts, she had an extraordinary understanding of the complexity of the human condition.


She defined and demanded excellence. Her gentle yet sharp eyes and her patient yet unyielding ears were meant to bring confidence and surety. Orlanda hoped to shepherd us to our best selves.


Her commitment to persons of all ages, from all walks of life and -- of diverse abilities -- touched us in ways that we are just beginning to comprehend. We recognized the generosity of spirit, joy, love, and hope that she gave those with whom she came in contact. She embraced life and she would want us to do likewise. Orlanda will live on through the many hearts and minds whose lives she touched. Our lives will reflect her legacy.


A memorial service will be held on Sunday, April 17, 2016 at 3:30 pm at The Community Church of New York Unitarian Universalist.


Notes of condolences can be sent In Care Of Rev. Bruce Southworth, The Community Church of New York Unitarian Universalist, 40 East 35th Street New York, NY 10016.


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In Memory of Robert M. Doss (1927 - 2016)

Posted By Michelle Pederson, Monday, March 14, 2016
Updated: Tuesday, March 15, 2016


The Rev. Dr. Robert Mabry Doss died on February 12, 2016 at the age of 88.


Bob was born on September 12, 1927 in Jacksonville, FL. He served in the United States Army as a Sergeant Major in Nagoya, Japan from 1946 to 1947, and went on to receive a Bachelor of Art from the University of Richmond in 1949. Called to the ministry, he studied at Colgate-Rochester Divinity School and Starr King School for the Ministry, and he graduated from Starr King with a Bachelor of Divinity in 1959. He obtained his Doctor of Divinity in 1980 from the Meadville-Lombard Theological School.


Rev. Doss was ordained to the ministry in 1959 by the Unitarian Church of Rockville, MD and was subsequently called to serve as minister. In 1963, he was called to serve as minister to the First Unitarian Society of Wilmington, DE. He held the pastorate for over thirty years until his retirement in 1994, at which point the congregation named him Minister Emeritus.


Rev. Doss’ service to the denomination spanned over many years. He served as Chair of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Ministerial Fellowship Committee from 1968 to 1971; President of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association; Board Member of Beacon Press; Board Member of the St. Lawrence Foundation for Theological Education; Member of the UUA Panel on Theological Education; member of the UUA Religious Education Accreditation Committee (now the Religious Education Credentialing Committee); various positions on Greater Washington Association of Unitarian Universalist Congregations; and member of several ministerial study groups.


Outside of the denomination, he was a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; board member of Planned Parenthood; and a board member of the American Civil Liberties Union. And he marched in Selma, AL.


Bob had many talents: singing, drawing designs and caricatures, and writing children’s stories to accompany his sermons. His love of nature, as a “naturalistic humanist,” evolved into camping summers in Maine where he hiked, canoed, and collected and carved walking sticks. Outdoors at home, he loved to build stone patios and cairns, plant trees, and take meditation walks in the morning.


He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Margaret W. Doss; his daughter, Katherine D. Briggs (Michael); his son, Kenneth M. Doss (Alicia); his brothers, James V. Doss, and Thomas L. Doss; his sister-in-law, Norma Doss; and his five grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents James and Sarah Doss, and his brother William H. Doss.


Condolences may be sent to Peggy Doss, Ken Doss, and Kathy Briggs at 112 Wynwood Drive, Wilmington, DE 19810-4428.


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In memory of John A. Farmakis (1923-2016)

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The Rev. John A. Farmakis died on January 24th, 2016 at the age of 92.


John was born on August 30, 1923 to Alexander Farmakis and Henrietta (Cunningham) Farmakis. He received a Bachelor of Art from the University of Pennsylvania in 1944. He enlisted in the United States Army in 1946, in hopes of serving the mission of the United Nations; he was stationed in Germany and served time in Fort Hood. After leaving the army, he enrolled in Harvard Divinity School. He received a Bachelor of Sacred Theology from Harvard Divinity School in 1950, and continued on to study as a graduate student through the 1950-1951 academic year.


Rev. Farmakis was ordained to the ministry in 1952 by All Souls Universalist Church of Oakland, ME. He held a pastorate at All Souls from 1951 to 1953. He was next called to serve as minister to First Parish Church of Saugus, MA in 1953, and he remained there until he joined the United States Navy as a Chaplain in 1954.  He served as a Navy Chaplain for two years. Upon his release in 1956, he was called to the Unitarian Universalist Society of Stanford, CT, and he served as minister to the congregation until 1970. In 1970, he was called to serve as minister to the Unitarian Society of Northampton and Florence. Rev. Farmakis held that pastorate for eighteen years, and retired from active ministry on his sixty-fifth birthday in 1988. Following retirement, he served as interim chaplain to Manchester College, Oxford (now Harris-Manchester College) throughout the 1988 -1989 academic year.


Rev. Farmakis engaged within the denomination outside of parish ministry. He was active within the Universalist Service Committee (now Unitarian Universalist Service Committee) and the Universalist Historical Society (now Unitarian Universalist History and Heritage Society), and served on the Advisory Board of the Universalist Service Committee from 1957 to 1961. He was a member of the Planning Committee of the Universalist Church of America; trustee of the Unitarian Universalist Association’s (UUA) Metropolitan New York District; and member of the UUA Department of Overseas and Interfaith Relations Advisory Board from 1961 to 1964.


John was born in Philadelphia, and of Greek and Scottish decent. He remained always a staunch Philadelphian, and his grandfather, John P. Farmakis was instrumental in the building of the city’s St George’s Greek Orthodox Cathedral. John deeply loved his family, and enjoyed reading, research, and participating in many Philadelphia-based community activities.


Of John, Rev. Judy Buck-Glenn writes:


"John was a dear friend of nearly thirty years. He was honest, honorable, kind, and deeply-read, with a keen mind and a passionate commitment to Enlightenment liberalism. He is deeply missed by a small circle of very devoted friends, who feel privileged to have known this quietly-rather-great man." 


He is survived by his nephew, John L. Farmakis, Jr., and his family, in addition to several close friends.


In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to The John A. Farmakis Memorial Fund, Att’n Patrice M. Wiseley, University of Pennsylvania, Associate Director of Gift Planning Services, 3535 Market Street, Suite 500, Philadelphia, PA 19104-3309.


Notes of condolences may be sent to John L. Farmakis Jr. at

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In Memory of Frances Jeanne Melis Mills (1942-2016)

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, March 2, 2016



The Rev. Frances Jeanne Melis Mills died on February 2, 2016 at the age of 73.


Jeanne was born on October 18, 1942 to Francis Kenneth Melis and Frances Inez Esson Melis. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Bucknell University in 1963, and a Masters of Education from Columbia University in 1965. She served in the then-newly-minted Peace Corps, where she taught English in South America from 1965 to 1967. She went on to receive a Master of Business Administration from Simmons College in 1983, and a Master of Divinity from Harvard Divinity School in 1997.


Rev. Melis Mills was ordained in 1997 at the Second Congregational Society, Unitarian Universalist in Nantucket, MA, and her ordination was the first in 150 years for the congregation. She spent the next thirteen years serving interim ministries; she held pastorates in Nashville, TN; Midland, MI; Tulsa, OK; Chicago, IL; Houston, TX; Huntington, NY; Schenectady, NY; Eugene, OR; and Savannah, GA. She retired from the ministry in 2010.


Jeanne’s life was rich with diverse experiences. During her time in the Peace Corps, she served as an education specialist for Colombia Educational Television, a post that included visiting public schools and helping teachers utilize television programming. After returning to the United States, Jeanne worked for the Western History Center at the University of Utah, on an Indian Oral History Project and taught in two Massachusetts public school districts. She settled in Massachusetts with her family in 1970, and worked with friends to launch the Scituate Environmental Effort S.E.E., an organization with a goal of preserving marshland from development and developing a successful recycling program within Scituate.  Later she worked as an archivist at the Pilgrim Hall Museum, Plymouth, MA cataloging and preserving history. After receiving her MBA in 1983, she worked for a time as a financial planner. She received the call to ministry in 1993 and enrolled in divinity school, thus beginning her final career journey.


Upon retiring from the ministry, she searched for a new home and settled at last in a charming cottage in Dorset, VT where she shared her “grandmother cottage” with family and friends.  She enjoyed feeding delicious food and fresh baked bread to all, while decorating her home with flowers from her garden.  Much energy was injected into the house by the antics of her beloved companions, her Manx cats, Lucy and Max. 


Her sister, Darleen, remembers Jeanne dearly as “a woman of great energy and interests who could accomplish much.” Family and friends remember her as an inspiring, caring and free-spirited person.  Fellow Peace Corps Volunteer, Stephen Sheppard remembers, “Jeanne was the best of us.  Giving, caring, unselfish.  Her good, positive, energy became part of us all from the moment she came into our lives so many years ago.  We miss her already.”


Jeanne is survived by brothers Richard and wife Marilyn Melis; Gerald and wife Gwendolyn Melis; sisters, Darleen Melis and husband Irving Ingraham, M.D.; and Carole Melis, Esq. She is missed by her two daughters - Nicole Mills and her partner Eric Whittelsey and their son, Henry Benson Mills-Whittelsey; daughter, Sara Mills and their father, Ellsworth Benson “Nick” Mills. Her nieces and nephews include Heather and Brian West and their children Kipp and Hadley; Kay Melis Pannier; Adrianne and Keith Melis, Leah and Alexander Ingraham.


A memorial service will be held at the United Church of Dorset, 143 Church Street, Dorset, VT onMarch 5, 2016 at 11:00AM with a reception following at the church.  Jeanne’s ashes will be buried next to her mother in the Esson Family Cemetery in Mt. Angel, Oregon during the family reunion in July.


In lieu of flowers, any donations may be sent to the Natural Resources Defense Council or the Knox County Humane Society in Rockland, Maine.


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In Memory of...Alan Egly (1931-2016)

Posted By Administration, Friday, February 26, 2016

The Rev. Alan L. Egly died on January 31, 2016 at the age of 84.


Alan was born on July 19, 1931 to Jesse and Ida Egly. He received a Bachelor of Science from Illinois State University in 1952; a Master of Divinity from Anderson College in 1956; and a Masters of Religious Education from Union Theological Seminary in 1967.


Rev. Egly was ordained to the Church of God in 1959 and served various parishes in Brooklyn before moving to All Souls Church of Brooklyn, NY in 1965. During his time at All Souls, the congregation came to identify as a Universalist Church, and now identifies as an ecumenical church. Rev. Egly was fellowshipped with the Unitarian Universalist Association in 1972. He served the Community Church of New York, NY as Minister of Education from 1972 to 1976 and as Associate Minister for Administration and Program from 1976 to 1977. He spent the next two years serving as interim minister to the First Unitarian Church of Westchester, NY and part-time minister to the First Unitarian Society of Rockland County of Ponomoa, NY. From 1979 to 1987, he served as Minister to the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Quad Cities, of Davenport, IA. He entered community ministry in 1987 and served as the Executive Director to the Doris and Victor Day Foundation from 1987 until his retirement in 2014.


He held a part-time pastorate with the Unitarian Fellowship of Burlington, IA from 1987 to 1995; was voted Minister Emeritus of the Burlington congregation upon his departure; and was voted Minister Emeritus of the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Quad Cities in 2010.


Rev. Egly was committed to the denomination and sat on district and national committees. His roles included, but were not limited to treasurer of the Continental UU Ministers Association; Ministerial Settlement Representative to the Prairie Star District (PSD) of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) for 8 years; active member of the PSD and PSD Annual Conference Planning Committee; and UUA General Assembly Planning Committee Member from 1984 to 1991. 


One of Rev. Egly’s proudest achievements was his action as founder of the Association of Small Foundations (now Exponent Philanthropy), the United States’ largest association of funders, dedicated to serving foundations with few or no staff, philanthropic families, and individual donors.


Alan and his wife Patricia (Pat) expanded their family of four children with the addition of foster children, and the presence of foster children caused them to remain young in spirit. Alan and Pat worked with many neighborhood organizations toward their dream of maintaining safe and affordable neighborhoods. Personally, they renovated the homes on the block where they lived.


Alan was committed to the concept that each person was responsible for helping create a better world for all.  That sense of responsibility led him to speak often on individual rights. He lectured in many places of the right to determine passage from life to death.


Alan’s daughter, Lorrie, remembers her father as one who “spent his life in service.”


Alan's surviving family members include his wife, Patricia; children, Lorrie Copeland, Lisa (Peter) Lehmuller, Christian (Marie) Day and Yvonne Day; Peter Blaibel; Jeremy Sird; six grandchildren; and one brother.


In lieu of flowers, gifts to Final Exit or Compassion and Choices are suggested.


Condolences may be sent to Patricia Egly, 701 Iowa Street, Davenport, IA 52803.


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In Memory of . . . Jeanne "Holly" Bell (1930-2016)

Posted By Administration, Thursday, February 11, 2016

The Rev. Jeanne “Holly” (Millett) Bell died on January 22, 2016 at the age of 85.


She was born on December 9, 1930 to Robert N. and Leonora (Mann) Millett. Holly received a Bachelor of Arts from Smith College in 1951, and a Master of Arts in Religious Studies from Hartford Seminary in 1973, along with the Stevens-Gesner Project.


Rev. Bell was ordained to the ministry in 1973 by the All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church of Greenfield, MA. From 1973 to 1974, she served as Chaplain to the Franklin County Public Hospital of Greenfield, MA. In 1974; she was called to serve as minister to Unity Church of North Easton, MA, and she held that position for the next 25 years. Upon her retirement from the ministry in 1999, she was voted Minister Emerita of Unity Church


Prior to entering ministerial fellowship, Holly served as Director of Religious Education to the All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church of Greenfield, MA, from 1956 to 1970.  She was passionate about religious education, and held membership with the Liberal Religious Educators Association (LREDA).


Rev. Bell served the denomination in various capacities. She volunteered with the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Interdistrict Committee for Connecticut Valley, Metro New York and Joseph Priestley; the UUA Interdistrict Committee for New England; and the Ballou Channing District of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association (UUMA). Additionally, she served as a UUA Ministerial Settlement Representative and a UUA representative to the National Council of Churches Commission on Women in Ministry.


Holly was deeply connected to nature, and enjoyed hiking, camping, canoeing, birdwatching, and gardening. She was a dog lover and an avid reader, and spent many summers at Star Island Family Conference and Retreat Center and Rowe Camp and Conference Center.


In addition to the outdoors, Holly enjoyed cooking, crafting and baking. She retired in 1999 to spend more time with her children and grandchildren, and they remember her lovingly. Holly’s children described their mother as a vocal advocate and protestor for fair and equitable treatment.


She is survived by her loving children, Peter M. Bell (Mary); Rebecca H. “Becky” Bell (Edward Green); and Elizabeth M. “Libby” Kellard (Robert); and adoring grandchildren, Emily Bell Springett (Doyle); Christopher H. Bell; Meghan E. Kellard; and Alyssa M. Kellard.  Holly was predeceased by her son Marc A. Bell, as well as by her sister Cheryl Herman.  She was the spouse of the late Hubert W. Bell and the late Gerald C. Bailey.


A memorial service will be held on Saturday, May 21, 2016 at 2:00 pm at the Congregational Unitarian Society of Bernardston, 46 Church St., Bernardston, MA.  A reception will follow in the Parish Hall.


In lieu of flowers, you are invited to honor the life and service of Rev. Jeanne “Holly” Bell with a memorial donation to the Unitarian Universalist Association. Please make checks payable to “Friends of the UUA” and mail to: Unitarian Universalist Association, Attention: Gift Processing, 24 Farnsworth Street, Boston, MA 02210. Donations may be made online at:


Condolences may be sent to Rebecca Bell, 1603 Tina Lane, Castleton, NY 12033. 

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In Memory of . . . Marvin D. Evans (1925-2016)

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, January 26, 2016
The Rev. Marvin Davis Evans died on January 9th, 2016 at the age of 90.

Marvin was born on December 2nd, 1925 to Olaus Bowdoin Evans and Pearl Hutchinson Evans. He served in the United States Army after graduating high school, and participated in the liberation of Western Europe. Marvin received a Bachelor of Arts from Randolph-Macon College in 1949; and a Bachelor of Divinity from Meadville Lombard in 1963.

Rev. Evans was ordained to the ministry in 1963 by the First Unitarian Church of Richmond, VA. Rev. Evans served as minister to the Unitarian Church of Victoria, British Columbia from 1963 to 1967; minister associated with the University Unitarian Church of Seattle, WA from 1967 to 1969; interim minister to the Main Line Unitarian Church of Devon, PA from 1977 to 1978; Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Director of Church Staff Finances from 1978 to 1981; interim minister to the Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship of Bellingham, WA from 1984 to 1986; and Minister Emeritus to the Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship from 1988 until his death.

Rev. Evans was actively involved with the denomination. He served as a trustee or board member to the following organizations: the First Unitarian Church of Richmond, VA; the Vancouver Island Unitarian Committee; the British Columbia Unitarian Council; the Canadian Unitarian Council; UUA the Pacific Northwest District; the Puget Sound Unitarian Council; and the UUA Board of Trustees. Additionally, he served as a UUA Ministerial Settlement Representative and a Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association (UUMA) Good Offices Person.

Marvin and his dear spouse, Mary Hood Evans, moved to Seattle, WA in 1967 and joined University Unitarian Church of Seattle, where they remained dedicated members for thirty years. From 1967 to 1992, Marvin served on various boards, committees, and task forces, including Washington Citizens for Death with Dignity. Marvin was an active member of Cedars Church Unitarian Universalist, of Bainbridge Island, WA, from 2006 until his death.

Of his father, David Evans wrote: "Beyond family and a love of books and sailing, The Unitarian Church was very much in the center of my father's life. He greatly enjoyed the service he gave to the church, who in return have been very supportive of him in his 'radiant twilight years'."

He is predeceased by his spouse, Mary Hood Evans; and his son, Kent Hood Evans. He is survived by his son David M. Evans, and his daughter-in-law Alexis Johanson.

A memorial service will be held on February 13 at 3:00 PM (PST), at The Island School, 8553 NE Day Rd, Bainbridge Island, WA 98110. The service will be hosted by Cedars UU Church.

Condolences may be sent to the family at: David Evans & Alexis Johanson, P.O. Box 377, Keyport, WA 98345.

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In Memory of . . . Kenneth Gordon LaFleur (1933-2015)

Posted By Administration, Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Rev. Kenneth “Ken” G. LaFleur died on December 5, 2015 at the age of 81.

Ken was born on December 14, 1933, to Daniel LaFleur and Louise Pelletier LaFleur. Ken received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Maine in 1961; a Bachelor of Divinity from Bangor Theological Seminary in 1961 (later granted as a Master of Divinity) and a Master of Arts from Brandeis University in 1970.

Rev. LaFleur was ordained by the First Parish Unitarian Church of Castine, ME (now Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Castine) in 1954. He was called to the Castine congregation in 1954 and he served there from 1954 to 1958, and then again, for one year, in 1961. From 1958 to 1960, he also served as minister to First Parish in Northborough, MA. Ken served the First Parish in Wayland, MA from 1962 to 1969 and the First Universalist Church of Norway, ME and South Paris, ME from 1970 to 1972. He embarked on a thirteen year ministry in 1972, after being called to First Parish in Hingham, MA, Unitarian Universalist, known as Old Ship Church. Ken was voted Minister Emeritus of Old Ship Church in 1985.

Ken held membership with the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association (UUMA), and was actively involved with the Maine UUMA and Central MA UUMA districts during the 1950’s, 1960’s, and 1970’s.

After his retirement from full time ministry, Ken taught history at Northeastern University in Boston, MA; served as the organist of two churches; helped found the AIDS support group of central Maine; wrote a weekly column for a central Maine newspaper; and served as part-time minister to All Souls Universalist Church of Oakland, ME.

Current minister of Old Ship Church, and direct successor of Rev. LaFleur, Rev. Ken Read-Brown, spoke highly of Rev. LaFleur’s time at Old Ship. Rev. Read-Brown wrote:


Ken's thirteen year ministry here at Old Ship was a time of healing and strengthening for our congregation; his ministry truly did make our congregation's shared ministry during more recent years possible. Ken was, not incidentally, one of the finest preachers in our or any denomination. But even more importantly, he was a fine, good, and gentle man.


Ken is survived by his beloved wife of 54 years, Helen Myrick LaFleur; daughter, Margaret LaFleur Asadoorian; sister-in-law Deborah Myrick Martin; several nieces and nephews; and many other family and friends.

Notes of condolences may be sent to Helen LaFleur, P.O. Box 110, East Vassalboro, ME, 04935.

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