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Welcome! The Women and Religion Movement is alive and well in the 21st Century. A grassroots project started by lay leaders in the 1970s as an effort to promote examination of religious roots of sexism and patriarchy within the UUA and beyond, UU Women and Religion officially began as a task force following the unanimously-passed WOMEN AND RELIGION RESOLUTION at the 1977 UUA General Assembly. Although the Task Force was eventually sunsetted, the movement still exists in UU communities that hold Women & Religion programs and gatherings for those who identify as women. It exists at the UU General Assembly, where UUW&R brings our Store to the Exhibit Hall and occasionally hosts a gahering. And it lives in the hearts and lives of people who have been touched by the many changes inspired by this movement.

"We do not want a piece of the pie. It is still a patriarchal pie. We want to change the recipe!" -- Rosemary Matson

FL2013 1Third Annual Florida UU Women’s Retreat, March 15-17 - The weather was perfect, the setting attractive and the energy warm and welcoming for the forty women who gathered in retreat last month at the DaySpring Conference Center in Ellenton, Florida. For the past three years this gathering has brought UU women together from congregations as far north as Georgia to as far south as Fort Myers. The goal of the retreat is simply to strengthen connections and enjoy time together in a comfortable setting.

The retreat opened Friday with a wine and hors d’oeuvres social and dinner. Following dinner, members of the Fort Myers congregation led the Ingathering,
setting the tone for the weekend’s theme of “transitions.”  The evening was brought to an energetic close with a drumming circle. Saturday morning the group began the day with meditation led by Judy Minear, who also facilitated the program. Judy used verbal cues and music to facilitate exploration of life’s transitions. The afternoon was filled with canoeing, kayaking, a sing-along, a drumming circle, and another pre-dinner wine and hors d’oeuvres gathering. Following dinner, the group reassembled for an evening of laughter and sharing together.

Sunday morning offered participants the opportunity to walk a labyrinth, explore the grounds, and to gather together for a joyful closing led by members of Orlando’s 1U.
A special thank-you to everyone who helped make this year’s retreat a success. We look forward to coming together again in March 2014.

Story by Allie Gore; photos by DaySpring and Allie Gore

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Far left, group gathered for closing service led by 1U members.
From left above, Mary Murphy (1U), Lola Sorenson and Nana
Royer (St. Augustine); Anne Howe (Fort Myers) and Cheryl Orr
(West Volusia) reflect on their weekend together; Cat Rigby (1U)
coordinates the round sung by the group as Cindy Gustafson and
Kim Traugott (Fort Myers) listen.

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