Building and Grounds
FIRST FLOOR: THE MAIN HALL: SANCTUARY
The Reredos behind the chalice
WE LIGHT THE FIRE
We light the fire of a new idea.
It is the light of our coming together
To share our common experience
And to know and experience new life.
The picture above is of our reredos, our “alterpiece” at the front of our meeting room. It was painted by member Patience Morrisey many years ago. She created the flame as a background for our chalice, and, with others in our Women’s Alliance, selected the prose that radiates from the flame, representing wisdom from all peoples, all religions over the years. There are 28 quotes going clock-wise around the center flame; here’s a sampling:
——“What is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Edmund Burke
——“I follow no creed. My mind is my church.” Thomas Paine
——“Love thy neighbor.” Jesus
——“To love is to approach each other center to center.” Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
——“The moon hangs like a yellow lantern in the trees that lie like lace against the sky. Ah! Still the night. Ah! Hush the breeze. Surely God is nigh.” Walter Kerr.
THE SYMBOLS on the Reredos
Unitarians consider the humanity of all peoples and therefore their religions are of signicance to us. The six symbols flanking the reredos represent broad groupings.
- The flaming lamp is for enlightenment of Unitarian Universalists. The double circle suggests our attitude of inclusiveness.
- The cross represents the sacrifice of Christianity.
- The Jewish star is the sign of that questioning, vigorous religion.
- The crescent moon and star for Islam.
- The animal head (with a soul inside) is an Indian totem symbolizing the respect of all native peoples for natural forces.
- Einstein’s equation for energy is a symbol for our contemporaries who feel that science is enough to think about.
Tom Stockybrand and Gary Chanco with John Isham are on duty each Sunday to record the service. The recordings are available on discs for inbound members to have and watch. The recordings are also available to watch on You Tube under the search Manatee Unitarian Universalist Fellowship. Some recordings are available on audio only. The sermons for 2018 are waiting for an editing program to be available on You Tube. Sermon Archives under this website’s heading of SUNDAY show the sermons available. Various other programs, ie Memorial Services, Performances by members, special music, are also made on request.
FIRST FLOOR: THE MAIN ROOM: VISITOR TABLE
The visitor table is just inside the front door where Greeters steer newcomers to get a special Welcome with name tags and sign in to receive newsletters and other information. Brochures on every aspect of Unitarian Universalism are available. Visitors also get an Update, the monthly MUUF newsletter which tells about the activities during the month.
The Social Hall is frequently rearranged to accommodate whatever meeting or event requires: dinners for Share A Dish, bridge games, new UU meetings, board meetings. The other half of the Social Hall is the Library.
FIRST FLOOR: THE LIBRARY
The Library invites members to the books for reading and borrowing as well as being the background for group meetings. See more Library information under the LIBRARY Heading.
FIRST FLOOR: THE KITCHEN
FIRST FLOOR: THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE
ON SECOND FLOOR: Religious Exploration Activity Rooms, R.E. Offices
The deck is host to many occasions: Coffee hour after Sunday Services, Friday night Share-a-Dish dinners, small group meetings of every kind, as well as the major events as shown in the picture when the deck, the main hall and the social room turned into dinning venues. Westminster Towers and Shores, owners of adjoining property were kind enough to build a new wall along the south side of our property to the specifications suggested at the Bradenton Safety Officer walk-thru of the MUUF grounds. This fence allows the police maximum sight lines for surveillance of our property.
In the background of the DECK photo is the garage which is our overflow storage area. Recently the Men’s Group reviewed the contents and saved only the necessities.
THE WAYSIDE PULPIT
Ready for games and playtime.
We have a Memorial Garden as a resting place for past members, relatives and friends. It was established in 2000 and currently holds the cremains of 25 past members, relatives and friends. Exact locations are on a chart in the office. It is located on the south side of our building just off of the deck. Since Hurricane Irma took down much of the fence between us and Westminster to the south.
The fence belongs to Westminster and after a red tape delay, it is ready to install a new one. We take pride in the garden and strive to maintain it in the style we promised those who are resting there. We invite those who enjoy planning a garden plus those who enjoy working in the soil to join our committee. Our lawn man, Tony Martin, will do the heavy work. The garden has been certified as a native Florida garden containing only those plants native to Florida. It is really a restful place to relax and shut out the hectic world.
CERTIFIED FLORIDA YARDS LANDSCAPING
MUUF has been a Certified Florida Yard since 2012. We had been mindful of the choices of plants before that, but for our projects for application of Green Sanctuary accreditation, we emphasized the Florida Yard certification.
There is parking spaces on the north side of our property. It continues from 15th Street to the west and exits on 16th Street. It is made of crushed rock and shells with grassy areas. The city-owned parking on the east side of 15th Street is also available on weekends. We are close to Bradenton’s Farmer Market, municipal and county offices, the Central Library, and marina areas so that our parking lot is convenient for members with downtown activities.
There are handicap parking spaces near the front door. There is a drop off spot to the south of the building and a connecting ramp to the front door.