COME JOIN US IN A FREE AND RESPONSIBLE SEARCH FOR THE TRUTH! We invite the public to join us at these programs. For a listing of the program activities this month, see the Fellowship’s Monthly Calendar.

The Program Committee believes that human development and lifelong spiritual development are continuing adventures. We try to provide opportunities for a variety of personal and interpersonal growth adventures, based on interests and talents within our Fellowship, as participants in our denomination and in our wider human community. Over time, our programs include topics of interest in arts and science and relationships to other people, nature and spirit.

We invite you to join in and to share your ideas, knowledge, and passions as you may wish.  -Leann Gehm, Chair, Program Committee

Artist Colony: Fellowship and local artists meet every Thursday from 9:30 am.-1pm to interact with each other and create in beautiful, well-lit spaces, using their choice of media and art form, including drawing, painting, and other portable arts and crafts. At noon, a “learning” time occurs during lunch, when individual art pieces and group plans are discussed. Periodically the group visits places meaningful to them as artists. Contacts: Joan Juul, and Bob Camp,

Awakening Heart Dharma Group: This Buddhist meditation and study group meets every Sunday from 7-8:30 p.m in the Fellowship Commons. Contacts: Martha Shum,; Jan Eisenhard,, and Gillian Harrison,

CUF Choir makes a joyful sound!  The choir returns from  summer vacation  August 16th. Rehearsals are Thursdays from 5:30 to 6:30 pm: Choir Director Carrie Vine.

Gentle Chair Yoga: The class meets each Wednesday in the Commons or Sanctuary from 1-2 p.m., and is open to all who wish to learn about posture, breathing techniques, and how to strengthen core muscles. Some standing poses. Yoga mat not necessary. No charge, but donations to CUF are welcome. Contact: B.J. Carr,

Open Minds: A lively mixture of presentation and discussion, the forum is about current issues, humanism, art and psychology. Sometimes the discussion just goes where the group takes it. Discussions explore territory open and curious minds might find interesting. Participants agree to disagree politely, be considerate, listen respectfully, be open to new ideas, and have fun. Contact: Jonathan Springer,

Society of Stitchers (SOS): The group gathers in the Fellowship Commons every Friday from 11a.m-12:30 p.m. to knit, crochet, tat, or create other fiber art for various projects, including baby blankets and comfort shawls. Contact: Pam Jacobini at

Spanish Table: This casual conversation group meets at the Fellowship every Wednesday from 12 noon-1 p.m. Members may bring interesting topics to discuss at each session. Anyone leaning and practicing Spanish is welcome. Contact Jim May,

Unitarian Folk Orchestra (UFO):  An open group of folk musicians who play fun acoustic instruments, and sing an eclectic mix of songs ranging from old-timey American to folk, with Celtic instrumentals and even an occasional show tune. The group meets on Saturday mornings from 10-11:30 a.m. Every 1st Saturday members perform at Helia Health Center in Carbondale, and every 3rd Sunday at Anna Veteran’s Home in Anna, IL. On remaining Saturdays the group practices and plays at the Fellowship. Come play with us. It’s a good way to do some social action and make the world a more harmonious place! Contact Judy Aydt, and Candy Davis,

The Unitarian Recorder Ensemble: The group meets on Tuesdays from 2:30-4:p.m. The repertoire is varied, with an emphasis on renaissance music. Anyone who plays the recorder, or any other renaissance instrument, is invited to join. Contact Judy Aydt,


Artist Series: Meets on the 4th Wednesday of most months at 7 p.m. in the Fellowship Commons. Fellowship and local artists discuss and share their work. Presenters have included visual artists working in a variety of mediums, fiber artists, glassblowers, jewelry makers, poets and writers, musicians, collectors, and many others. Leann Gehm,

Carol’s Lunch Bunch: Named after a past member of the Fellowship, the group meets at 11:30 on the 3rd Thursday of each month at the Happy Reunion restaurant in Murdale. Participants enjoy good food and conversation. Contact Kathy Starbuck,

Dreamworks: Participants meet at noon on the 1st Sunday of each month to share and discuss their dreams. Techniques used to find meaning in our own dreams and those of others are based on a group dream work process developed by Jeremy Taylor, a Unitarian minister. Periodically, presentations and workshops take place. Contacts: Nillofur Zobairi, & Janet Harris,


The Image Spinners: This eclectic circle of women writers explore and celebrate the richness of their life experiences in diverse ways, utilizing a variety of genres such as poetry, fiction, and memoir to shape the experiences into meaningful patterns and tapestries. Themes and concerns reflected in their writing cover many Unitarian Universalist principles, although this is not their main purpose in creating and expressing. The group meets in participants’ homes on the 2nd Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. Contacts: JoAnn Nelson, & Toby Saken,

International Coffee Hour: Sponsored by SIU’s International Education and Programs, the event is supported on different Fridays by various community groups in the International IE & P’s Woody Hall area. CUF lends its support on the 4th Friday of each month from 3-5 p.m. This is a great opportunity for students from many parts of the world to meet and have conversation with community members outside the classroom, and all of us learn from each other as we build mutual understanding and respect over coffee and snacks we bring to share. All are invited to share in this wonderful experience and outreach! Contacts: JoAnn Nelson,, Nillofur Zobairi,, and Joyce Webb.

New Humanist Forum: The NHF is a member-led group devoted to exploring together the many facets of “what it means to be human”. Meetings take place on the 3rd Sunday of each month. The larger community is welcome to this event. Contacts:  Robert DeFilippis,, and Marilyn Smerken at and Jonathan Springer at

Round Table Readers: The group’s name represents the democratic process of choosing a wide variety of books, both fiction and non-fiction, according to the preference of participants. Some genres included over the years have been historical fiction, realistic fiction, fantasy, autobiography, biography, and history, as well as works related to health and healthcare, environmental concerns, religious and spiritual ideas, and social, political, and economic conditions. The group meets on the 4th Sunday of each month in the CUF library. Members take turns in leading the discussion. Contact: Pat Elsaid,

Video Circle: The group meets on the 3rd Friday of each month at 6:45 p.m. in the Fellowship Commons to view, experience, and discuss films together. The films may be old or new, in English or not, from the United States or from different lands and varied cultures. We try to choose films that speak to the human condition/experience, and discuss the meanings we gain from the stories portrayed. Contact Amy Weber,


CUF Covenant Groups: “Joining together for deeper connection and spiritual growth”, each group meets monthly to connect and grow from a further reflection of our worship themes on a 9-12 month cycle. The group does one activity for the Fellowship during this cycle. Groups meet at CUF or at members’ homes. Contact: Rev. Sarah, or Mary Campbell,

CUF Heritage Project:  Contact Bill Sasso,

Justice Book Club: Readers are on an awakening journey to understand the racial divides that haunt our society today. Participants make the effort to educate themselves about the plight of people of color. Books chosen are non-fictional accounts of the historical timeline for racial injustice, the influence of the country’s history, and how we arrived at our present racial dilemma. The group meets at 7 p.m. at the Fellowship twice a month on Wednesdays (according to participants’ schedules). Contact Linda Linsin,

If you are interested in proposing a new group or program click here.

We invite you to join in and to share your ideas, knowledge, and passions as you may wish.  Nillofur Zobairi, for the Program Committee