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In Memory of . . . Alexander L. Craig (1937-2014)

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, September 3, 2014
The Rev. Alexander Lincoln Craig died on July 22, 2014, at the age of 76.  Alec was born on October 22, 1937 to Emily and Edward Craig. He graduated from Keene State College with a Bachelor of Education in 1959, a Master of Education in 1961, and from Syracuse University with a Doctorate of Education in 1968. He went on to study for three years at Bangor Theological Seminary.

Rev. Craig was ordained by the Universalist Church of Sangerville, ME (now Unitarian Universalist Church of Sangerville and Dover Foxcroft) in 1990. He was first called to serve as interim minister to the neighboring churches, the Universalist Church of Sangerville, ME and the First Universalist Church of Dexter, ME. He served both churches as interim minister from 1990 to 1992, and as settled minister from 1992 to 2000. He later served the Unitarian Universalist Church of St. Petersburg, FL as co-consulting minister from 2002 to 2005 and as pastoral care minister from 2009 to 2012; and Spirit of Life Unitarian Universalists of Odessa, FL, as part time minister from 2005 to 2012. He was named Minister Emeritus of both congregations in 2012.

Committed to the denomination, Alec was a member of the Northeast District of the Unitarian Universalist Minister’s Association (consolidated with the New Hampshire Vermont District in 2008 to form the Northern New England Chapter), and served the district as Chair of Extension, and Chair of Adult Activities. He also served as Northeast District Disaster Coordinator to the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee; liaison to students at Bangor Theological Seminary; and president and vice president of the West Central Cluster of UU Congregations, FL.

Alec believed that volunteering was important, and participated in many community organizations.  He served as board member and board president of the Charlotte White Center; volunteer for the Fund Raising Committee for Womancare; member of the Dexter Regional High School Civil Rights team; member of the Interfaith Alliance; member of the American Civil Liberties Union; volunteer for Habitat for Humanity; and volunteer teacher of safe driving courses for the American Association of Retired Persons. After moving to Florida, Alec worked part time for the Salvation Army.

Prior to ministry, Alec served the field of special education for twenty eight years. He worked in public school administration, college teaching, residential care, and institutional care.

Alec was gifted in pastoral care, and is described by his wife, Penny, as a “humanitarian” who “enjoyed serving people”. Penny remembers how Alec’s ministry included end-of-life pastoral care; she remarked, “He loved doing funerals, and loved visiting people in nursing homes and hospitals, holding their hands, and making sure their families felt like they were being heard.”

He is survived by his wife, Penny Craig; son, Geoffrey Craig (Sarah Flynn); daughter, Emily Kirk; granddaughters, Allora Craig, and Hannah Kirk; and brothers Duncan Craig (Cynthia McFadden) and Edward Craig (Frances Craig).

A Scottish Celebration of Life will be held in October, 2014 in Seminole, FL; a second Scottish Celebration of Life will be held in New Hampshire during the summer of 2015.   

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to American Lung Association, 55 W. Wacker Drive, Suite 1150, Chicago, IL 60601 (www.lung.org), and/or your local hospice organization.

Notes of condolences may be sent to Penny Craig, 9053 Pinehurst Drive, Seminole, FL 33777.

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In Memory of . . . Jennifer M. Slade (1959-2014)

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, September 3, 2014
The Rev. Jennifer Marie Slade died on July 17, 2014 at the age of 55.

Jennifer was born on July 11, 1959 to Robert W. Slade and Kennetha A. Slade. She graduated from New York University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1981, and from Harvard Divinity School with a Master of Divinity in 1990.

Rev. Slade was ordained by the Winchester Unitarian Society, of Winchester, MA in 1991. She held pastorates at the Greenville Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Greenville, NC from 1992 to 2002, and First Universalist Church of Sampson County at Red Hill, of Taylors Bridge, NC from 2006 to 2010. She served as sabbatical minister at Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Durham, NC, in 1999; Ministerial Settlement Representative for the Unitarian Universalist Association’s Southeast District from 2008 to 2011; and interim minister of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Woodstock, IL (now Tree of Life UU Congregation of McHenry, IL) from 2011 to 2012. She spent the past year serving as developmental minister to the Unitarian Church of Norfolk, VA.   

Rev. Slade’s ministry supported both the spiritual and physical growth of congregations. Throughout her time at the Greenville Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, the congregation grew from 165 adult members and 40 children and youth, to 360 adult members and 155 children and youth. The congregation also moved to a new, larger facility. Similarly, Jennifer guided the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Woodstock to a larger facility commensurate with its growth, particularly in Religious Education. She hoped to move the Norfolk congregation to a new location as rising tides repeatedly flooded the church.

Jennifer was invested in the larger denomination, and served as a member of the Southeast District of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association. She worked as a Chaplain Resident at the Bronson Methodist Hospital, of Kalamazoo, MI, and served as campus chaplain and advisor to the Unitarian Universalist Group at Furman University, of Greenville, NC. Jennifer was instrumental in starting the Montessori preschool, UU World of Children at the Greenville Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, founded in 1997. She was appointed a Merrill Fellow in 2000, and spent her sabbatical at Harvard.

Jennifer served various community organizations including the South Carolina Department of Alcohol and other Drug Abuse Services; AFFIRM a support organization for gay and lesbian youth; the Sampson County Methamphetamine Taskforce; the Urban League of the Upstate; and the Greenville Faith Communities United (now Interfaith Forum).

Jennifer’s colleagues and friends remember her as “bright,” “loving,” ‘kind,” and “inspiring.” She was a birthright Unitarian, and passionate about fixing social ills. She was very interested in reading; and she had an incredible memory for facts, dates, and important events in the lives of those she loved.

Jennifer is survived by her husband, John Santoianni; son, Samuel J. Santoianni; daughter, Emma M. Santoianni; brother, K. Sean Slade; sisters in law, Rachel L. Slade, Lois A. Sans, and Jeanne R. Century (Michael S. Weisman); brothers in law, Michael P. Normandin, and James M. Santoianni (Joan F. Santoianni); nieces, Samara Ruberg, Rachel K. Sans (Christian J. Palmer), Kimberly A. Cochran (Joshua Cochran), Katherine J. Santoianni; nephews, Kenan C. Slade, Reuben W. C. Slade, Christopher M. Santoianni, Stephen J. Santoianni (Valerie Santoianni), James R. Santoianni,  Matthew M. Santoianni, and Justin P. Santoianni.

A memorial service was held on Saturday, August 2nd, at 3:00 p.m. at the Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 4907 Garrett Rd., Durham, NC 27707.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The UU World of Children, att. Maureen Nery, 1135 State Park Road, Greenville, SC 29609 (http://www.montessoriworldofchildren.com/giving.html).

Notes of condolences may be sent to John Santoianni, 914 W. Markham Ave., Durham, NC, 27701.

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In Memory of . . . Margaret D. Tyndall (1923-2014)

Posted By Administration, Sunday, July 20, 2014
The Rev. Margaret D. Tyndall who died on March 29, 2014 at the age of 91. Margaret was born on March 7, 1923 to Harold and Kathleen Davies. She graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a Bachelor of Science in 1952. She went on to receive a Master of Divinity from Starr King School for the Ministry in 1968.

Rev. Tyndall was ordained to the Unitarian Universalist ministry in 1971 by the Unitarian Church of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. She served as Associate Minister to the Unitarian Church of Edmonton from 1971 to 1973, and from 1977 to 1978. She was called to the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Redwood City in 1989, and served there as Minister of Religious Education until 1992.

Margaret was certified as a Director of Religious Education by the Unitarian Universalist Association in 1970. She served as Director of Religious Education to the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarians from 1961 to 1962; and the Unitarian Church of Edmonton from 1967 to 1971 and 1976 to 1978.

Margaret served as membership chairman of Liberal Religious Educators Association (LREDA) and Emergency Room chaplain at the University of Alberta Hospital in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Margaret and her spouse, Gordon Tyndall, were among the founders of the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarians and served the congregation as Sunday school teachers. Both were passionate about supporting Tibet; they raised thousands of dollars for the Tibetan Refugee Children’s Education Fund, and housed a number of Tibetan refugees.

Margaret was interested in painting, calligraphy and writing short stories. She was involved with the Berkeley Buddhist Peace Fellowship and studied Vipassana meditation. She also enjoyed swimming and hiking

Margaret is survived by her sons, David Tyndall (Christine Angell) and Benjamin Tyndall (Janice Tyndall); daughter, Caroline Salcedo (Jose Salcedo); grandchildren, Antonio, Ricardo, and Nina; and seven great-grandchildren. She was predeceased by her husband of seventy-one years, Gordon Tyndall.

Notes of condolences may be sent in care of David Tyndall at 1510 Stallion Court, McKinleyville, CA, 95519.

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In Memory of . . . Robert E. Stebbins (1931-2014)

Posted By Administration, Sunday, July 20, 2014
The Rev. Robert E. Stebbins died on June 17, 2014, at the age of 82. Robert was born on July 28, 1931, to Charles F. Stebbins and Velma J. Stebbins. He graduated with a Bachelor of Art from Bowling Green State University in 1953 and a Master of Divinity from Yale Divinity School in 1956. He went on to receive his PhD in modern European history from University of Minnesota in 1960.

Rev. Stebbins was ordained to the Methodist fellowship on June 3, 1956. He served as program secretary at the University of Minnesota YMCA/YWCA from 1956 to 1958 as well as conducting Sunday services at the Methodist Church in New Richmond, Wisconsin. He then served as part time Interim Assistant Minister at the Mayflower Congregational Church from 1958 to 1959.

Rev. Stebbins withdrew from the Methodist ministry in 1959, and was fellowshipped as a Universalist minister the same year. After the merger of the American Unitarian Association and the Universalist Church of America, he became a Unitarian Universalist minister. While studying for his PhD, he served as the executive director for Tri-U, a Unitarian Universalist student group at the University of Minnesota from 1959 to 1961. Rev. Stebbins served as a professor of European history at Eastern Kentucky State College from 1963 until his retirement in 2000.

Rev. Stebbins was one of the founders of the Madison County UU Fellowship in 1978. He was an active member of the congregation for the rest of his life, most often serving as program chair for the lay led congregation.

Robert enjoyed traveling, and explored all seven continents; he followed a ritual of climbing to the highest point of each destination. He was an avid tennis player, and played until the age of seventy-eight. Friends and colleagues recall his “rational perspective” and sense of humor.

Robert’s family members fondly remember his “general delight in living,” and the love he had for his wife and three daughters. His wife, Ann Stebbins, noted, “He encouraged me to reach a potential I did not know I had. He helped me lead a life I did not know I could.”

He is survived by his wife, K. Ann Stebbins; daughters, Susan Stebbins Collins (William Collins), Beth Ann Stebbins (Doug Brown), and Kara Lynn Stebbins (Al Ferro); granddaughter, Emily Stebbins (Chris Vita); grandson, Russell Brown; sister, Ruth Raines; nephew, Blake Raines (Rei-fung Raines) and grand-niece, Karlene Raines.

A Celebration of Life was held on June 21, 2014 at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Madison County, in Richmond, KY.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Hospice Care Plus, 208 Kidd Drive, Berea, KY 40403; the Madison County Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 1081 Willis Branch Road, Richmond, KY 40475; or the American Humanist Association, 1777 T Street, Washington, DC 20009.

Notes of condolences may be sent to Ann Stebbins at 208 College View Dr., Richmond, KY 40475.

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In Memory of . . . David D. Van Strien (1924-2014)

Posted By Administration, Sunday, July 20, 2014
The Rev. David D. Van Strien died on June 29, 2014 at the age of 89.

David was born on December 23, 1924 to John Van Strien and Cornelia Van Strien. He graduated with his Bachelor of Art from Ursinus College in 1946 and his Bachelor of Divinity from New Brunswick Theological Seminary in 1954.


Rev. Van Strien was ordained to the United Church of Christ on June 6, 1954. He served the North Congregational Church of Middleton, NY from 1954 to 1957, and the Belleville Congregational Church of Newburyport, MA from 1958 to 1969.

Rev. Van Strien was fellowshipped as a Unitarian Universalist minister in 1967 He served as minister to the Peterborough UU Church, of Peterborough, NH, from 1969 to 1990 and was voted Minister Emeritus in 1990.

During his twenty years of service at the Peterborough UU Church, he re-established the Monadnock Summer Lyceum, a community-service program that brings well-known speakers to the greater Peterborough community. He baptized over twenty-five children, united sixty couples in marriage, and led over eight hundred worship services.

Rev. Van Strien dedicated much of his time to Unitarian Universalism, and served the denomination in various capacities. He served on the Unitarian Universalist Association’s (UUA) Board of Trustees for nine years He served as a Good Offices person of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association (UUMA); and as President, Vice President and Secretary of the New Hampshire Vermont Chapter of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association.

David was a tireless activist for Palestinian human rights and co- founded Unitarian Universalists for Justice in The Middle East (UUJME) in the early 1970’s. He served UUJME for three decades, and chaired the organization from 1977 to 2003. Additionally, he founded the Palestine Education Network and received the New Hampshire Chapter of American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee's first annual award for his work in the causes of peace and justice.

David helped establish both the WIC Program and Planned Parenthood in Southwest NH; and was involved in the New Hampshire branches of the American Civil Liberties Union and Peace Action.

He is remembered by a colleague for his “sense of humor” and “devotion to religious community.”

He is survived by his wife, Karin Van Strien; brother in-law, Egmont Fortun (Ursula); four nephews; one niece; and many great nieces and nephews and great-great nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in David’s memory to the Peterborough Unitarian Universalist Church, 25 Main Street, Peterborough, NH 03458.

Notes of condolences may be sent to Karin Van Strien at 205 RiverMead Road, Peterborough NH 03458.

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In Memory of . . . Robert T. Dick (1916-2014)

Posted By Administration, Friday, June 20, 2014

The Rev. Robert Tyrrell Dick died on May 31, 2014 at the age of 97.  Robert was born on December 17, 1916, to Joseph R. Dick and Alma Tyrrell Dick. He graduated from Tufts University in 1942 with a Bachelor of Art.  He went on to attain a Bachelor of Divinity from Colgate-Rochester Divinity School in 1948.

Rev. Dick was ordained to the Unitarian Universalist ministry in 1948 by the Bristol Universalist Church of Bristol, NY. He served as minister to the First Universalist Church of Lyons, OH from 1951 to 1957 and as associate minister to the Universalist Church of West Hartford, CT from 1957 to 1959. He served as minister to the Belpre Circuit of Unitarian Universalist Churches, of Little Hocking, Frost, and Belpre, OH from 1959 to 1964; the Unitarian Universalist Church of Acton, MA, from 1964 to 1967 (now The First Parish Church of Stow and Acton); the Unitarian Universalist Church of Springfield, VT and the Universalist Church of Chester Depot, VT (now the First Universalist Parish of Chester) from 1967 to 1976; and The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Elkhart, IN from 1976 to 1984. He was voted Minister Emeritus of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Elkhart in 1985, and honorary Minister Emeritus of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Springfield, VT in 1998.

Committed to both the denomination and social justice, Rev. Dick served as board member of the Universalist Service Committee; Good Offices person to the NH/VT District; and advisor to the Erie Shore Federation of Liberal Religious Youth. He was a lifelong member of the interfaith peace organization, Fellowship of Reconciliation; member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; hospice volunteer; charter member of the liberal advocacy organization, Common Cause; and founder and board member of the Vermont Chapter of the United Nations Association of the USA. In 1981, he was honored with the Adin Ballou Peace Award of the Unitarian Universalist Peace Fellowship.

 

Prior to entering the ministry, Robert served as a conscientious objector in Civilian Public Service from 1942 to 1946. He was enrolled in Tufts School of Religion during the drafting process and waived his theological exemption. His service included forestry work, ward duty in mental hospitals, and serving as a subject in a number of medical experiments.

His family members remember Robert for his dedication to peace, justice and race relations.

He is survived by his sons Nathan Dick and Jeffrey Taft-Dick; daughter, Noreen Redd; and grandchildren, Jonathan, Joya and Philip Taft-Dick. He is predeceased by his spouse, Helen Hersey Dick.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Doolittle Home, 16 Bird St., Foxboro, MA 02035-2323, or to UURMaPA Endowment Fund, c/o Paul L'Herrou, Treasurer, UU Retired Ministers and Partners Association, 38 Kimball Avenue, #12, Ipswich, MA 01938-1222

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In Memory of . . . I. Gregg Carter (1929-2014)

Posted By Administration, Friday, June 6, 2014

The Rev. I. Gregg Carter died on April 20, 2014 at the age of 85.  Gregg was born on February 28, 1929, to Joseph and Lena Carter. He received a Bachelor of Science, majoring in sociology, from Southwestern at Memphis (now Rhodes College) in 1949. After college, he was a social worker with the Tennessee Department of Welfare. He served in the United States Army from 1951 to1953 on active duty in Korea, and was honorably discharged with the rank of Corporal. He went on to attain a Bachelor of Divinity degree from Meadville Lombard Theological School of the University of Chicago in 1956.  

 

Rev. Carter was ordained to the Unitarian ministry by the Westminster Congregational Society, at the Westminster Unitarian Church, in Providence, RI (now in East Greenwich, RI). He served as minister to the Westminster Congregational Society from 1956 to 1963, and the Unitarian Church of Staten Island, NY from 1963 to 1968. He simultaneously served the Unitarian Church of Sharon, MA and the First Universalist Church of Foxborough, MA from 1968 to 1969. He then served the Unitarian Church of Marlborough and Hudson, MA from 1969 to 1974; the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Lynn, MA from 1974 to 1977; and the First Congregational Parish in Kingston, MA from 1977 to 1988. He went on to serve as interim minister to the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Fort Wayne, IN from 1989 to 1991; Oak Ridge Unitarian Universalist Church, of Oak Ridge, TN from 1991 to 1992; the Unitarian Universalist Church in Oak Park, IL (now Unity Temple Unitarian Universalist Congregation) from 1992 to 1993; and the First Universalist Church of Yarmouth, ME from 1994 to 1995.

 

Rev. Carter served the denomination in various capacities. He was a member of the Southern New England Unitarian Council from 1957 to 1958; advisor of the Narragansett Federation of Liberal Religious Youth from 1957 to 1958; secretary of the Channing Conference of Unitarian Churches from 1957 to 1958; president and scribe of the Channing-Murray Unitarian Ministers' Association from 1957 to 1961; board member of the New England Unitarian Ministers’ Association from 1957 to 1961; program chairman of the Greenfield Group of Unitarian Universalist Ministers from 1962 to 1964; member of the Social Concerns Committee of the Metropolitan District of Unitarian Universalist Churches from 1966 to 1967; program Chairman and Secretary-Treasurer of the Central Massachusetts District of Unitarian Universalist Ministers from 1971 to 1972; and treasurer of the Unitarian Sunday School Society from 1976 to 1977.


Gregg was an amateur organist and had a lifelong appreciation for music. He was a talented student of calligraphy, and taught several classes on the subject. Additionally, he was fascinated with the history of religion, and was an avid reader.

 

Gregg is described by his wife, Jane Carter, as “one of the kindest people who ever walked the earth….everyone who knew him felt that way about him.” She fondly remembers him as a gifted minister who was, “excellent at extemporaneous prayers and preaching” and a “wonderful father.”  

He is survived by his wife, Jane Carter; son, Scott Barton Carter; daughter, Catherine E. Carter and son-in-law Kevin Seward; and his sister-in law Marcia Akerholm, along with many cousins in Mississippi, Louisiana and Virginia.

 

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to CapeAbilities, 895 Mary Dunn Road, Hyannis, MA 02601.

 

Notes of condolences may be sent in care of Jane Carter, 103 Sanford Ave, Somerset, MA 02726-5209.

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In Memory of . . . Georgette I Wonders (1952-2014)

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Rev. Georgette Irene Wonders died on April 11, 2014 at the age of 61.  Georgette was born on July 23, 1952, to Samuel and Joyce (Sturtevant) Wonders. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from San Jose State University in 1977, and went on to attain a Master of Divinity from the Seattle University School of Theology and Ministry in 2001.


Rev. Wonders was ordained to the Unitarian Universalist ministry on October 13, 2002, by the Bradford Community Church Unitarian Universalist, of Kenosha, WI. She was called to the Bradford Community Church Unitarian Universalist in August, 2002, and served there until her death.

Georgette joined the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association in 2002, and served as Good Officer for the Central Midwest Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association from 2005 to 2014. She served as a member of the Kenosha County Clergy Association, and as co-president of Congregations United to Serve Humanity (CUSH) from 2005 to 2007.

 

Georgette enjoyed knitting, gardening, reading, baking, and quilting. A former elementary school teacher, she loved children and relished the time she spent with her great nieces and nephews. She recently announced her decision to retire from the ministry, and her post retirement plans included traveling, toy making, and spending time with her wife.

Georgette’s wife, Hope, lovingly remembers meeting Georgette and knowing that she “had a passion that had been building her whole life to really make a difference as a minister.” Hope remembers Georgette’s commitment to social justice and social action, her engaging presence, and ability to “look at the larger picture while holding the smaller pieces.”

She is survived by wife, Hope Engeseth; son, Andrew Wonders; parents, Sam and Joyce Wonders; sisters, Heather Keefer, Autumn (Simon Szeghy) Wonders and Naomi (Randy Groskinsky) Wonders; father-in-law, Lyle Bloom; brother-in-law, Leslie (Wendy) Bloom; and sister-in-law, Faith Wamuthu. Georgette is also survived by 15 nieces and nephews and 10 great nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Bradford Community Church Unitarian Universalist, 5810 8th Ave, Kenosha, WI 53140; Congregations United to Serve Humanity (C.U.S.H.), 6050 8th Avenue Kenosha, WI  53143; or the Shalom Center of the Interfaith Network, 1713 62nd Street, Kenosha, WI 53143.

Notes of condolences may be sent in care of Hope Engeseth, 5608 35th Avenue, Kenosha, WI 53144.

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In Memory of . . . Herbert F. Vetter (1923-2014)

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Rev. Dr. Herbert F. Vetter Jr. died on March 7, 2014, at the age of 90.  Herbert was born in Baltimore, Maryland, on September 27, 1923 to Herbert Ferdinand Vetter Sr. and Kathleen Wilson. He graduated the University of Chicago in 1947 with a Bachelor of Arts.  He then attended Harvard Divinity School and Meadville Theological School, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Divinity in 1952. He received an Honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree from Meadville Theological School in 1983.

 

Rev. Vetter was ordained to the Unitarian ministry on October 26, 1952, at the First Congregational Parish Unitarian in Sharon, MA. He served the First Congregational Parish from 1952 to 1953. In 1954, he was called to the Unitarian Church of Franklin, NH, at which he served as minister until 1957. He went on to serve the Unitarian Church of Delaware County, PA, from 1958 to 1959; The First Parish of Milton, MA, from 1959 to 1960; and The First Parish of Northborough, MA, from 1960 to 1964. In 1967, he was called to First Parish in Cambridge, of Cambridge, MA. He served First Parish until 1990, first as Associate Minister and then as Minister at Large, while simultaneously founding and directing Cambridge Forum. In 1999, First Parish in Cambridge voted him Minister Emeritus.

 

Rev. Vetter was very active within the denomination. He served as co-chair of the New England Ministers Institute; Moderator of the Greenfield Group of Unitarian Universalist Ministers; Field Education Representative of the Harvard Divinity School; Executive Committee Member of the New England Unitarian Ministers’ Association; member of the United Ministry at Harvard and Radcliffe; member of the Leverett House Senior Common Room at Harvard College; and member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Board of Chaplains.

 

An avid writer and historian, Rev. Vetter authored five books, and edited five additional titles. He wrote: Joyful Power (1999); The Harvard Square Book (2007); Is God Necessary? No! And Yes (2007); Prayers of Power (2008); James Luther Adams: Prophet to the Powerful (2008). He edited: Speak Out: Against the New Right (1982); The Heart of God: Prayers of Rabindranath Tagore (1997); Catholic Power vs. American Freedom (2002); Hartshorne: A New World View (2007); Notable American Unitarians 1740-1900 (2007).

 

In 1967, while serving First Parish in Cambridge, Rev. Vetter founded Cambridge Forum. Cambridge Forum began as a program of The Social Responsibility Committee of First Parish, and functioned as a platform that brought together renowned thinkers and ordinary citizens to discuss and examine social and political issues. Topics of discussion included the Vietnam War, the Civil Rights Movement, and the anti-nuclear movement. The Forum produced the first continental radio and television broadcasts done by Unitarian Universalists. Cambridge Forum now exists as a non-profit organization affiliated with First Parish; its live public discussions are broadcasted through National Public Radio.

 

Following his retirement from the ministry and Cambridge Forum, Rev. Vetter founded the Harvard Square Library in 2000 (www.harvardsquarelibrary.org). Affiliated with First Parish in Cambridge, Harvard Square Library is a digital library that features biographies, books, historical documents, and other materials about Unitarian Universalism and religious liberalism.

 

Herbert was interested in music, reading, visual and performing arts, and travel. He loved classical music and jazz; Duke Ellington was one of his favorite performers.

 

Herbert is remembered by his son, Jim, as having "an amazing intellect," and by his daughter, Kathleen, as having been “passionate about his many projects.”

 

He is survived by wife, Dorothy H. Vetter; daughter, Kathleen E. Vetter (John Zurich); son, James B. Vetter; son-in-law, Tim Kutzmark; two grandchildren, Lyra and Larsson; one great grandchild, Elsa; brothers, Donald Vetter, Walter Vetter, and Robert Vetter; and sister Muriel Helewicz.

 

A memorial service was held on March 22nd, at 2:00 p.m., at First Parish in Cambridge, 3 Church Street, Cambridge, MA 02138. Rev. Tim Kutzmark, of The Unitarian Universalist Church of Reading, officiated.

 

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Rev. Vetter's name to Cambridge Forum or Harvard Square Library, both at 3 Church St., Cambridge, MA 02138.

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In Memory of . . . Edgar Child Peara (1921-2014)

Posted By Administration, Monday, April 14, 2014

The Rev. Edgar Child Peara died on February 22, 2014 at the age of 92.  Edgar was born in Moline, Illinois on July 22, 1921, to A. Conrad Westling and Grace Child. His mother, Grace, remarried A.T. Peara and as an adult, Edgar assumed Peara as his last name.  He graduated from The Principia College in 1947 with a Bachelor of Arts, and worked as a Registered Christian Science practitioner for eleven years. He left the Christian Science faith in 1958, and enrolled in seminary. He graduated Meadville Lombard Theological School in 1962 with a Bachelor of Divinity.

Ordained to the Universalist ministry in 1963, Rev. Peara was first called to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Springfield, VT, and the Universalist Church of Chester Depot, VT. He served the two linked congregations until 1967. He was next called to the Lake Shore Unitarian Society of Wilmette, IL, at which he served from 1967 to 1976. He went on to serve the New Trier Unitarian Society, of Wilmette, IL from 1977 to 1987, and the Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Park Forest, IL, from 1987 to 1997. The Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Park Forest voted him Minister Emeritus in 1997.

Rev. Peara faithfully served the denomination and his community. He was President of both the New Hampshire/Vermont and the Central Midwest Districts; Social Action Consultant to the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee; and President of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association’s Chicago Area Liberal Ministers’ Group. He spent four years practicing as an abortion counselor for the Chicago Area Clergy Counseling Service for Problem Pregnancies and founded the North Shore Peace Initiative, in Illinois, and Veterans for Peace, in Oregon. Post-retirement, he worked for over forty-two different volunteer organizations in Eugene, OR, and volunteered until the age of ninety-one.

Prior to his call to ministry, Rev. Peara served the Combat Engineers Corps, from 1942 to 1946, as a lieutenant and company adjutant. In 2010, he was named a Knight of the French Legion of Honor.

Rev. Peara was interested in travel, art, movies, sports, and ballroom dancing. He was an avid traveler; in 2000, he spent several months in Auckland, New Zealand and served as Interim Minister at Auckland Unitarian Church.  His son, Tim, remembers his father for valuing family, and collecting and telling jokes. He describes his father as a "kind and generous man,” who was ""very concerned about the community in which he lived.”

Rev. Peara is survived by sons, Chris Peara (Julie Mello), Jon Peara (Josie), Tim Peara (Carolyn), and Andy Peara (Alison); stepchildren, Portia Blackman (Dave), Allan Ball, Leah Pahlmeyer (Perry), and Sarah Taylor (Tim); ten grandchildren; two great grandchildren; two nieces; one nephew; and one cousin.

A Celebration of Life was held on May 17, 2014, at 2:00 p.m., at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Eugene, 1685 West 13th Avenue, Eugene, OR, 97402.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of Rev. Peara to The Unitarian Universalist Church in Eugene, Unity of the Valley, Nearby Nature, The Village School, Red Cross of Lane County, Community Alliance of Lane County, Friends of Buford Park, or Friends of Hendricks Park.

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