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Unitarians explore the meaning of “Unitarian Universalism”


On Sunday, February 19 at 10 a.m., Mr. Ron Schaeffer will give a sermon entitled “What It Means to Be a Unitarian Universalist” for the Unitarian Universalists of the Chester River, 914 Gateway Dr., Chestertown. It is important that we occasionally ask the questions, “What does it mean to be a Unitarian Universalist? And, why is it important that we discuss this as a congregation?” In a religious denomination that allows the individual to decide what to believe, can we get consensus on our basic values and why we are here? During a time of major change for our congregations, Ron Schaeffer, a long-time UU, explains his view on what Unitarian Universalism means to him.

Special Music for this service will be performed by violinist/violist Nevin Dawson.

Childcare for infants and toddlers will be available during the service. Join us for this thoughtful discussion; all are welcome. For more information call 410-778-3440, or visit us on Facebook.

Workshop for Rural Health Care Businesses offered in Centreville


Chesapeake Charities will provide capacity-building training for businesses that provide health and fitness services in rural areas. The workshop, “Development Strategies for Rural Health Care Providers” will be held on Thursday, March 2 at the Queen Anne’s County Building, 110 Vincit Street, in Centreville.

Led by Chesapeake Charities’ Grants and Evaluation Specialist, Mary Ann Gleason, and Executive Director, Linda Kohler, the workshop will provide business leaders with new ways to diversify funding resources, improve sustainability and strengthen their businesses. The workshop is funded through the Rural Business Development Grant Program of the USDA and there is no charge for attendance.

“We know first-hand how challenging it is to stay on top of new funding opportunities, but it is critical for success,” said Kohler, “We have put together a very focused workshop for busy managers. It is a small investment of time with potentially big rewards.”

2-Mary Ann Gleason        1-Linda Kohler

Photos: Mary Ann Gleason (left) and Linda Kohler (right)

Course content will include:
– Identifying rural health resources and opportunities
– Addressing new market opportunities in population health and preventive care
– Developing effective strategies to make the case for funding
– Diversifying the funding base to improve sustainability
– Partnering with the community and connecting with local government officials

The workshop runs from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon in the conference room at the Queen Anne’s County Building on Vincit Street in Centreville. Online registration is available at http://chesapeakecharities.org/events. For questions, please call Mary Ann Gleason at Chesapeake Charities (410) 643-4020 or send an email to info@chesapeakecharities.org.

Chesapeake Charities is a community foundation with over a decade of success in obtaining funding for local programs and initiatives, and supports a wide range of charitable causes including arts, education, health and human services, animal welfare, and the environment. All of our 75 component funds have a common cause – a passion for making a difference in their communities. Together we have invested more than $9 million in the Chesapeake Bay region since 2005.

Chesapeake Charities is accredited by the National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations. For more information, visit our website at chesapeakecharities.org.

WIN has Donated its Dodge Ram Van to the Bayside H.O.Y.A.S., Inc.


The mission of Women in Need, Inc. (WIN) has expanded over the years and it has supported many initiatives in the county, including the Alley Teen Center from 2007 to 2015, offering tutoring, counseling and after school activities for middle and high school students and activities such as Girl’s Circle and Boys Council. The rise of other services for area youth like the Kent County Community Center and the progressive programs like the H.O.Y.A.S. allowed the organization to focus on new endeavors like Project M.E. (Microenterprise Empowerment) providing support and location space for new start up businesses to gain exposure to the region and customers at its downtown location, Finders Keepers.

WIN HOYASThe van, originally purchased to support the Alley Teen Center and was used for other partnerships such as the Kent Shoreman Basketball team, will be put to use by the H.O.Y.A.S. for travel around the county and for away games throughout the Eastern Shore. It is fitting that it will pass from one youth basketball program to another and we hope it will serve them well as they continue to serve and do good work with the kids of our community. “Our organization is grateful that the citizens of our community and businesses not only appreciate and value what we do as a program, but want to see us grow,” John Queen, founder of Bayside H.O.Y.A.S., Inc.

In addition to the donating to Bayside H.O.Y.A.S, Inc., WIN will also be making its annual contribution of $1,500 to the Samaritan Group Emergency Homeless Shelter program in addition to other planned contributions to HomePorts and other area organizations.

This year WIN will celebrate 20 years serving the Kent County community. For the last 15 years, Karen Dionisio and company have operated the WIN Thrift Store on Philosopher¹s Terrace (next to Dollar General), as the main source of funds used to provided support various programs for those in need. In addition to providing low cost furnishings and goods, the WIN Store also serves the community by providing home essentials to qualifying families for reduced or no cost.

Women In Need, Inc. is a 501(c)3 organization that provides client assistance through programs designed to empower individuals to success. For more information contact their administrative office at 410-778-3844 or email: info@win-foundation.org. Donations to the store are accepted Thursday thru Saturday during business hours.

Half Day Retreat in Hillsboro


On Saturday, February 18, The Retreat House at Hillsboro will be hosting a half-day retreat from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. entitled “Recovering Spirit: The Path to Forgiveness,” led by Reverend Paul Gennett, Jr., pastor of St. Mark’s in Dover, Delaware.

This contemplative session will focus on spirituality using the 12 Steps of AA and other teachings as a guide for exploration and discussion on the subject of forgiveness. The retreat is open to anyone who wishes to expand their spiritual life. Being in a recovery program is not required. Gennett explained, “Many of us struggle with letting go of things that are in the way of our spiritual growth. During this retreat we’ll consider what life might be like without them.”


The Retreat House at Hillsboro on the grounds of historic St. Paul’s Church

The agenda includes discussion and time for quiet reflection and prayer. Continental breakfast and lunch will be offered and to cover expenses, a free will offering of $25 per person will be gratefully accepted at the door. Online registration is requested at https://recoveringspirit2.eventbrite.com.

Located on the grounds of St. Paul’s Church at 22005 Church Street, Hillsboro, Maryland 21641, the Retreat House is open forgroup retreats and meetings, individual hermitages, meditation and any who seek a spiritual connection. A traditional Chartres-style walking labyrinth is always open for walking and prayer. The Retreat House at Hillsboro is a ministry of the Diocese of Easton, MD. For more information contact Francie Thayer, Director, at (410) 364-7042, info@retreathousehillsboro.org, or visit us on Facebook.com/RetreatHouseAtHillsboro.

Unitarians Explore the Impact of “Love” Upon Today’s Political Dialogue


On Sunday, February 12 at 10 a.m., Rev. Dr. Richard Speck will give a sermon entitled “Love Is All You Need” for the Unitarian Universalists of the Chester River, 914 Gateway Dr., Chestertown. As we approach Valentine’s Day, does love have the power to overcome hate? In the face of a country torn between Republicans and Democrats arguing over what the facts are, can love triumph to heal the breach? We’ll explore love and its role in our lives and religion.

Childcare for infants and toddlers will be available during the service. Join us for this thoughtful discussion; all are welcome. For more information call 410-778-3440, or visit us on Facebook.

Tim Kern Sporting Clay Tournament Set for April 1


The Tim Kern Sporting Clays Tournament will be held at the Hopkins Game Farm in Kennedyville, Maryland on Saturday, April 1st. Each entry into the tournament requires a fee of $45 with all proceeds benefiting the Tim Kern Memorial Foundation. Hopkins Game Farm will be open all week for you to brush up on your skills in preparation for the 11:00 start. Registration will begin at 10:00 a.m. (Participants are welcome to shoot the course prior to Noon, please meet us at 1:00pm for lunch.) If you have any further questions, please contact the Hopkins Game Farm at (410) 348-5287.

Following the tournament, everyone is welcome to participate in the post-event party to be held at Hopkins Game Farm. Beer and wings will be provided free of charge to all tournament participants. A $10 donation is required at the door for individuals that do not participate in the shoot. Sponsorship opportunities are still available. For more information, please contact the Tim Kern Memorial Foundation at (410) 778-4060 or by e-mail at timkernmemorialfund@gmail.com.

As in previous years, all proceeds garnered from the event will go to support the Tim Kern Memorial Foundation. The mission of the Foundation is simple: to raise community funds by hosting events in the spirit of Tim. Tim Kern attended Chestertown Middle School and graduated from Kent County High School in 2002. A tragic accident took his life in 2006. The Foundation was established by friends and family who shared a bond with Tim. Donations will be made to charities that embody the love for sports, passionate dedication, as well as fun and laughter that was Tim.

Please help make this year’s tournament a success by showing your support through sponsoring a shooting station and participating in the event. Thank you for your participation and we look forward to seeing everyone on April 1st.

Women’s League Announces Spring Scholarship Luncheon


The Women’s League of Washington College has announced plans for its annual Scholarship Luncheon to be held on Tuesday, March 14 at the college’s Hynson Lounge.  Funds raised through this event are used to provide scholarships for a local female student at Washington College.

This year’s spring luncheon, a woodland fairy inspired “Fairyopolis,” will feature an ever-popular wine auction, a wide array of bucket and silent auction items and a live auction led by popular radio personality Bill Blake.

Since its founding in 1951, the Women’s League of Washington College has contributed more than $350,000 to the College.  Its mission is to “foster closer relationships between the college and the community and to sponsor scholarships and other projects to benefit the college.”  The organization is open to all interested women; it is not necessary to be a graduate of the college to participate.

For further information please visit www.FaceBook.com/WLofWC.

Unitarians Host Bishop Charles Tilghman


On Sunday, February 5 at 10 a.m., Bishop Charles Tilghman will give a sermon entitled “How Black People Maintain Our Faith in God Despite Our Troubles” for the Unitarian Universalists of the Chester River, 914 Gateway Dr., Chestertown. Eighteen years ago Bishop Tilghman started The Potterhouse Ministries in Rock Hall, which later moved to Fairlee. Bishop Tilghman, President of the local chapter of the NAACP, is working to build better relationships within the community.

Special Gospel Music will be performed by Minister Annette Turner and Joshua Tilghman.

Childcare for infants and toddlers will be available during the service. Join us for this thoughtful discussion; all are welcome. For more information call 410-778-3440, or visit us on Facebook.

Mary Ball Washington’s Place in History on February 9


Current events in Washington, D.C. and around the world have brought attention to women’s rights, but women’s roles in shaping and defining American history span centuries. Distinguished author and professor Martha Saxton is a leading scholar in the field of gender studies and women’s history, and she is the spring 2017 Patrick Henry Writing Fellow at Washington College’s C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience.


Martha Saxton

Her most recent work is on the life of Mary Ball Washington—the mother of founding father George Washington. To kick off her residency, Saxton will give a presentation on “The Widow Washington,” at 5:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 9 in Hynson Lounge, Hodson Hall, on the College campus. Sponsored by the Starr Center and the Rose O’Neill Literary House, the lecture is free and open to the public.

Saxton’s upcoming book The Widow Washington is a biographical study of Mary Ball Washington. Minimally educated, Mary Ball left few records.Generations of George Washington’s historians have filled in around the sparse evidence that remains about her with increasingly unpleasant and frequently unfounded interpretations of her and her relationship with her son. Saxton’s book reevaluates this picture against the background of her life that spanned the dramatic changes of 18th-century Virginia. An orphan by the age of 12, Mary Ball went on to become a wife, mother, widow, planter, slave-owner, and devoted Anglican. Historians have tended to see George Washington as a self-made man, but Mary’s exacting temperament and reliance on her son in early widowhood to help her steer the family through precarious times strongly shaped his ideas about duty and his outsized sense of responsibility.

The genesis for The Widow Washington grew out of Saxton’s Being Good, Women’s Moral Values in Early America (2003), which had a section on 18th–century widows in the Chesapeake region. More broadly, the book is part of Saxton’s lifelong interest in locating the lives of women within their historical and social contexts so that their struggles with prevailing conventions can help restore to their memories meanings that have been lost. This was the goal of her earlier biographies— of the sex symbol, Jayne Mansfield (1976) and Louisa May Alcott (1977).

Martha Saxton retired in 2016, after teaching at Amherst College for 20 years in the History and Sexuality, Women’s and Gender Studies Departments. She has also taught at the Institute for the Study of Human Rights at Columbia and for several years in the Inside/Out Program at the Hampshire County House of Corrections in Northampton. Saxton has garnered numerous awards and fellowships for her work as a scholar and a teacher and has published in the Women’s Review of Books, Journal of American History, and William and Mary Quarterly among other scholarly publications.

Based in an office at the Starr Center in the circa-1746 Custom House on the Chester River, Saxton will work on completing her book and teach a seminar in the Department of English. The course, “From Biography to Fiction: Transformation and Revision,” explores the relationship between biography and the imaginative process of writing fiction using the accounts of three well-known early American novelists: Catherine Maria Sedgwick, Louisa May Alcott, and Harriet Beecher Stowe.

Saxton will live in the restored Patrick Henry House, a 1730s-era house in Chestertown’s historic district. Washington College acquired the Patrick Henry Fellows’ Residence in January 2007 through a generous gift from the Barksdale-Dabney-Patrick Henry Family Foundation, which was established by the Nuttle family of Talbot County, direct descendants of the patriot Patrick Henry.

Launched by the Starr Center in 2008, the Patrick Henry Fellowship aims to encourage reflection on the links between American history and contemporary culture, and to foster the literary art of historical writing. It is co-sponsored by the Rose O’Neill Literary House, Washington College’s center for literature and the literary arts. The Patrick Henry Writing Fellowship’s funding is permanently endowed by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, with further support provided by the Starr Foundation, the Hodson Trust, and other donors.

Founded in 1782 under the patronage of George Washington, Washington College is a private, independent college of liberal arts and sciences located in colonial Chestertown on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. The College’s C.V. Starr Center explores the complexities of the American experience through collaborative and creative approaches to understanding the past. For more information on the Center and the Patrick Henry Writing Fellowship, visit http://starrcenter.washcoll.edu.