Times are a changin’. As Georgia starts opening up and many people return to stores and restaurants, it is important to consider the risks posed by the virus and continue to follow safety protocols recommended by the CDC. Watching the throngs on TV break social distance without masks makes me think of a famous experiment by a professor at Stanford University in 1972. The purpose of the experiment was to determine how the ability to delay gratification would affect a child’s future. Children were given the choice of having one marshmallow to eat at once or waiting 15 minutes and having two. Extensive research showed that those who waited for a reward tended to have better life outcomes. We are waiting for two marshmallows in dealing with the coronavirus, especially those of us with physical conditions that would tilt our survival rate to the negative side. I will wait for the second marshmallow by sanitizing hands, wearing a mask and keeping social distance. My faith in fellow UUs leads me to believe that they will use reason to do what is best for them.
The UUFC Board has shared information with each other about HOW we can safely open, but WHEN we will open is to be determined by CDC and local government guidelines as well as a careful analysis of the best available medical data. The Board will have a closed meeting on May 13. If you have ideas or concerns for the Board to consider, email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call me (706 577-9242). As we learn more in this ever-changing environment, we’ll keep you posted.
The Board decided it was time to address the current situation and our future by purchasing a video camera and an external microphone for capturing our services for posting to our YouTube channel. We have been using personal iPhones, and while they capture very clear images, they leave a little to be desired with the audio and video manipulation, such as zooming. Those presentations that are not captured with the Zoom videoconferencing application, will be videotaped at our very own film studio, Grace Fellowship Hall. The Board is in agreement that we will continue videotaping the presentations after we return to the Fellowship, offering those who want to stay home, or are away, a chance to still be with us in spirit.
During these difficult times, while most people are trying to help each other cope, some others take the opportunity to exploit the situation with an Internet scam. Someone was using a bogus email address that began “presidenthaluufc…” to solicit our members to purchase $400 of various gift cards for “seven women with cancer.” Ever vigilant Brad Griffin contacted FTC.gov/complaint and the Anti Phishing Work Group (apwg.org) alerting them to the illegal activity. Be aware.
For those wanting to donate, the best way for the Fellowship is by automatic bank draft. Next would be by check mailed to P.O. Box 698, Fortson, GA. 31808. The last, because it costs the Fellowship a service fee, but is useful for those not using checks, is PayPal. Sent your PayPal donation to email@example.com.
Stephan Bloodworth’s presentation “Biophilia” and Connie Ussery’s “Flower Ceremony” bracketed Earth Day, and completely immersed us in our Seventh Principle: Respect for the interdependent web of life of which we are a part. This coming Sunday, May 3, Rick Spradlin will present a service on “Hope.” Rick always strikes a chord that resonates with us all. This will be a timely and much needed service.
Stay safe, and wait for the second marshmallow.