All Souls Kansas City

May 2021, Newsletter, The Flame

Table of Contents:

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Forum & Sunday Services |   From the Minister  |   Religious Education

Things To Do | Get Involved | Attendance

 Adult Education

Virtual Forum &

Sunday Services…

UU Forum | May 2, 2021: “The Paris Climate Agreement” with Robin Martinez

May 2 @ 10:00 AM – 11:00 PM CDT

After decades of scrambling to organize world governments to act collectively to ameliorate multiple, global climate crises, governments plan again to work together to affect environmental problems.  Via Pres. Joe Biden, the United States has now re-engaged its commitment to the Crisis Climate Agreement.  Robin Martinez (who spoke to the Forum during the 2016 Dakota Pipeline actions and protests) will speak about anticipated effects on legislative and climate-related policy initiatives.  Public and private sector climate response is anticipated to result in profound changes.…

Sunday Service | May 2, 2021: “Music Sunday” with The All Souls Choir with Music Director Anthony T. Edwards & Senior Minister Rev. Dr. Kendyl Gibbons

May 2 @ 11:15 PM – 12:15 PM CDT

This Music Sunday we take a dive into our hymnbooks. They are a source of UU history, worship resources, and, of course, wonderful music. Join Music Director Anthony T. Edwards, the All Souls Choir, and Rev. Dr. Kendyl Gibbons as we celebrate the music of our heritage and community. If you find yourself at the church before May 2, get a copy of each hymnal and take it home to enjoy this Sunday and this summer.   Click here to…

Sunday Plus Lunch

May 2 @ 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM CDT

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Cavatini Supreme – Tre buone! 

This fabulous pasta dish has three types of pasta, three types of cheese and three types of meat, Italian sausage, ground beef and pepperoni. The taste is similar to lasagna, but it is easier to eat. The vegetarian version will have trio of spring veggies.  The meal will include a wonderful antipasto salad and dessert.   

UU Forum | May 9, 2021: “One Hundred Days” with Burdett Loomis

May 9 @ 10:00 AM – 11:00 PM CDT

Burdett Loomis, an educator and political observer, will discuss accomplishments of the Biden/Harris Administration during their first 100 days in office.  Traditionally, the first 100 days of a presidency have been a measure of the effectiveness of newly elected officials.

Sunday Service | May 9, 2021: “Mothering and Anguish” with Rev. Kendyl Gibbons

May 9 @ 11:15 PM – 12:15 PM CDT

From Moses’s mother to George Floyd’s, the primal role of mother is one not only of tenderness, but also of pain, sacrifice and sorrow.  How can honoring mothers teach us to engage the risks of life in the service of right relationship and self-transcending love? Click here to watch streaming video on Sunday mornings at 11:15. Click here to find the YouTube channel and archives.

UU Forum | May 16, 2021: “How Has the Recycling Crisis Impacted Kansas City?” with John Fish Kurmann

May 16 @ 10:00 AM – 11:00 PM CDT

John Kurmann manages a Community Recycling Center, Green Events, and Litter Abatement Programs for Bridging the Gap.  Involved in public recycling for 25+ years, John will follow up on Neil Seldman’s 18 April Forum with a local perspective on the recycling crisis and how to help fix it.

Sunday Service | May 16, 2021: “Why Covenant?” with John Maher

May 16 @ 11:15 PM – 12:15 PM CDT

Our fellow member, John Maher, looks at the roots of ‘covenant’ in property law, and what it means to be part of something that lasts beyond our own participation. What is the purpose of the act of covenant in our community, and how can we be mindful in practicing it?  How does that practice help us to connect with our best selves? These reflections will lead us into our Annual Congregational Meeting, immediately following the service. Click here to watch…

UU Forum | May 23, 2021: “Language and Political Campaigns” with Dr. Gina Lane & Dr. Matthew Harris

May 23 @ 10:00 AM – 11:00 PM CDT

Dr. Gina Lane of William Jewell and Dr. Matthew Harris of Park University will be speaking at our Forum about how language is used in politics to campaign and popularize ideas and legislation. They will be focusing on the metaphors that shape our political world and the implications of the language used.

Sunday Service | May 23, 2021: “Spiritual Junk Food” with Rev. Kendyl Gibbons

May 23 @ 11:15 PM – 12:15 PM CDT

The effective antidote to the toxic rhetoric of bad religion is not no religion, just as the antidote to junk food is not starvation.  How do we educate our palates to prefer nutritious, life-giving spiritual nourishment?  How do we know it when we taste it?  And who benefits from our consuming cheap, empty spiritual calories?   Click here to watch streaming video on Sunday mornings at 11:15. Click here to find the YouTube channel and archives.

Sunday Service | May 30, 2021: “The Language of the Unheard” with Rev. Kendyl Gibbons

May 30 @ 11:15 PM – 12:15 PM CDT

This weekend marks the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre, the culmination of a series of attacks on black communities in 1919, 20, and 21.  American culture has typically responded to black resistance, resilience and prosperity with violence; does this historical awareness shed any light on the racially motivated episodes of economic destruction and looting of our own century?  What do we find when we follow the money, and what might we learn? Click here to watch streaming video…

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From the Minister. . .

The COVID crisis has had a paradoxical effect on the life of the church, both locally and nationally.  On the one hand, the requirements of safety have kept us separated from each other by physical distance.  On the other hand, the need to operate in an on-line environment has made us more reliant on cooperation in our congregational staff and volunteers, and among our churches, and also made our programs more accessible to those who have mobility issues or other limitations, or who are geographically distant.  In the course of the past year, we have had both visitors and consistent attenders of our services from several different states.  The Forum has been able to present very engaging speakers who might not have been able to get to 45th and Walnut on a Sunday morning.  We have visited a dozen neighboring congregations through our summer services, and offered an adult RE discussion class with friends in Columbus, Ohio.  We have found virtues in our necessity.

Once again this coming summer, we will share services with a number of our neighboring congregations in Kansas and across the midwest.  Another function that will take place virtually again this year will be our UUA General Assembly in June, from the 23rd to the 27th.  This is a five-day event when representatives of all the UU congregations, across the country and around the world, traditionally gather for celebration, workshops, speakers, conducting the business of the Association, and debating resolutions of social witness.  It is an opportunity to honor the beginning and ending of ministerial careers, and the outstanding work of volunteers, educators, organizers, and those who represent UU in the public arena.  It may be the only time you can hear our hymns sung by 3,000 voices — which is quite an experience!

Attending GA can be an expensive and exhausting project, if it means traveling across the country, and spending four nights in a conference hotel, eating at restaurants, and participating in activities and events in person from early morning to late at night.  Last year, when the decision was made to go virtual, most of the years-in-advance planning for GA 2020 had already been finalized, and while many UUA staff and volunteers made heroic efforts, it was an improvisation.  This year, there has been time to maximize the advantages of the virtual format with forethought.  The bottom line is, if you have any curiosity to learn more about the life and work of our national organization, but don’t have the time or money to spend a week in a strange city, this is a great year to attend GA in the comfort of your own home.  For more information, check out the web site at  Featured lecturers will be voter rights activists Stacey Abrams from Georgia, and Desmond Meade from Florida.

Each congregation is entitled to send a certain number of voting delegates to the Assembly, depending on the number of their members.  All Souls is entitled to 7 voting delegates, although any number of our members can attend the meetings, only those seven can actually vote on the motions and resolutions in the business meetings.  One of our members has already requested to be a delegate, and has been approved by the board.  If you would be interested in attending GA and representing All Souls as a delegate, please submit your name to the church office or any member of the board of trustees to be designated so that you can receive a voting credential.

Although the online process is less expensive for participants, there are still many expenses associated with producing a General Assembly, and that means there is still a fee required to register.  If you would like to attend, but find the registration fee prohibitive, All Souls has some money set aside to help with participation; please let us know, so we can assist.  If you would like to attend as a youth delegate, Rev. Cady can help guide you through that registration process.

The great lesson of the pandemic for many of us has been that even when we are separated, we are not alone, and that is true for our larger Church as it is for our own All Souls community.  Being part of the GA experience can be a way of engaging your UU journey and identity more deeply, and GA 2021 offers a unique opportunity for doing that.

We will all participate in one part of the GA experience, on Sunday morning June 27th, when the GA worship service is shared live across the country.  For our time zone, that will happen at 11:00, so plan to log on a little earlier than usual for our gathering that morning.  It will be good to be together with thousands of our fellow UUs — see you there!

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Religious Education…

All Souls Youth, Pre & Elementary Classes

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Things to do…

Virtual All Souls Movie Group Meets on May 5, 2021 at 7:00 PM

The All Souls Movie Group continues to meet via Zoom.  Our next meeting is Wednesday, May 5, 2021, at 7:00 p.m.   In May we will be discussing four of the 2021 Academy Award documentaries.   A documentary film is a motion picture that shapes and interprets factual material for purposes of education or entertainment.    

Collective:  The film revolves around a group of investigative journalists at a Romanian newspaper in their arduous journey of uncovering public healthcare fraud, corruption and maladministration.   Collective presents a darkly effective overview of the cycle of political corruption and public cynicism that takes hold when the government abrogates its responsibility to the people.  Available on Amazon Prime and other streaming services. 

Mole Agent:  An 83-year-old goes undercover in a Chilean nursing home in a warm-hearted and surprising look at age and intimacy.  Sweet, charming and poignant, the film is a meditation on growing old, loneliness and making a life when confined in an institution.  Available on Amazon Prime and other streaming services. 

My Octopus Teacher: documents a year spent by filmmaker Craig Foster forging a relationship with a wild common octopus in a South African kelp forest.  The two form a bond where she plays with Foster and allows him into her world to see how she sleeps, lives, and eats. In the film, Foster describes the impact on his life of his relationship with the octopus teaching him a lesson on the fragility of life and humanity’s connection with nature. This translated to Foster creating a deeper bond with his son as his son develops as a diver and marine life student.  Available on Netflix

TimeAn intimate but epic love story filmed over two decades as an indomitable matriarch strives to raise her sons and keep her family together as she fights for husband’s release from the Louisiana State Penitentiary commonly known as Angola.  This beautiful and haunting documentary reminds us that there’s a human being behind those prison identification numbers, someone who is loved and is missed.  Available on Amazon Prime.

Click the link below to join:

NeedleHearts Meets every Thursday in May

NeedleHearts Welcomes Spring

Join us every Thursday in May in Conover. We will meet from 10 until noon. Share your new projects and chat about gardens, books, binging TV shows and how life is opening with vaccinations. We welcome anyone interested in knitting and crochet. Having this outlet has helped us get through this last year.

Keep Calm and Stitch On

Contact Sue Coy or Sharon Cassity if you have any questions.

June Sunday Plus

Pesto Chicken Penne with Alfredo

An amazing blend of flavors, this dish was the hit of the pandemic home cooking. Add artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes, and spinach to the mix and this can’t be beat.

A fresh spring pea salad and dessert of either brownie or lemon cake make this a meal not to be missed. This meal is being prepared by the women of Demeters.

Please support this important group with your orders.

Deadline for June lunch is June 14th, 7 PM. 

Pick-up and delivery will be Sunday, June 20th, in the afternoon after 2 PM. 


Contact Diane or Sharon Cassity for more information.

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Get Involved…



All Souls is committed to affirmative action, equal opportunity, and non-discrimination in all aspects of church  life. The Board of Trustees is launching a pilot program to explore the efficacy of  four volunteer advocates in facilitating and monitoring All Souls practices related to issues internal to the church around, respectively, gender/sexuality, race/ethnicity, and ableness/accessibility as well as issues of destructive environmental change. The Equal Opportunity and Advocacy Survey is intended to: (a) create a baseline for assessing awareness around  target issues of identity and privilege; (b) obtain input about members’ and friends’  perceptions, observations and experiences related to All Souls’ inclusiveness practices; and (c) invite recommendations about members who could function effectively as an advocate.

Methodology. The survey contained 21 items. Information about the pilot program as well as the survey invitation, the online link for participation, and reminders were shared online through The Flame, The Friday Flicker, and the church’s Facebook page. Paper copies were sent by U. S. Mail with The Flame to members who prefer that route. Staff and Board members contacted some potential participants via telephone and Zoom.

Eighty-nine participants, ages 14 years to over 65 years, have completed the survey online. No paper copies have been returned. The convenience sample likely includes a few friends as well as members. More participants are less than 65 years of age (44%) than members for whom age is available (36%). Twenty-seven (31%, = 86) persons identify with one or more  target marginalized groups; missing data may reflect some reluctance to share sensitive information. Forty-five (51%)  persons have been impacted by human-caused environmental change.

Perceptions re inclusiveness.  Across the perception items, most members and friends (55%-88%) view All Souls as an inclusive environment. Employment of church staff is consistent with affirmative action practices. Visitors are made to feel welcome, and communication from the church inviting participation in church programs is accessible to everyone.  The church also manages the property and facilities in an environmentally responsible way (90%).

Looking at the percent of less positive responses (DisagreeSometimesNeutral/No-Opinion) captures the lack of consensus about whether All Souls members have equal opportunity for participation on committees (45%) or for leadership via nomination for elected offices (37%). Some respondents (20%) report observing or experiencing violations of equal opportunity practices, and others may be unaware of these specific church’s practices.

Noteworthy portions of participants likely are uninformed about two of All Souls’ business practices. Whether decisions about other organizations’ use of church facilities are equitable attracts the Neutral/No Opinion response for 36% of the sample. Also of interest is that 16% of the respondents choose Neutral/No opinion in regard to whether All Souls’ mission requires socially responsible investing of its endowment funds.

There are 32 answers to an open-ended opportunity to provide additional comments about All Souls’ inclusion practices. One person acknowledges realizing as the survey was completed that indicating a Neutral/No Opinion answer meant being uninformed. Negative comments reflect perceptions of more talking and good intentions than action. Positive statements reflect perceptions that All Souls tries successfully to be inclusive, and that the new elevator improves accessibility. Cogent comments  convey appreciation for the new advocacy pilot program, express a need for it to include a larger focus on young adults and teens, and recommend a strategy for increasing new member participation.

Violations of inclusion practices.  Eighteen respondents reported observing or experiencing situations at All Souls in which equal opportunity, affirmative action, or non-discrimination practices related to marginalized groups were violated. Two of the events occurred within the past year, and nine happened 1 to 3 years ago. Actions were taken to address nine of the violations. For 10 of the persons who observed or experienced the violations, there was no effect on their connection to All Souls. The remaining respondents report reduced commitment to the church, including not joining, withdrawing membership, decreasing attendance, demotivation, and impact on the emotional and practical investment.  One person “committed to balance the mis-action”.

Recommendations for advocates. The All Souls Board’s request for recommendations of members who could function effectively as  the advocates central to the Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Advocate Pilot Program generates names of 30 different individuals. Three responses indicate that no advocates should be appointed.

ConclusionsCaution is needed regarding assumptions that the survey findings can be attributed beyond the sample because of likely differences in age and possible reluctance to share sensitive information around marginalized groups. Nevertheless, the survey data support the following conclusions. (a) At least 89 persons are willing to engage in conversations about inclusiveness. (b) More participants hold positive than negative perceptions of All Souls’ inclusiveness practices. (c) More participants value than resist the pilot program. (d) Responses highlight potential consequences of both addressing and not addressing violations of inclusiveness practices.  (e) Participants facilitate the pilot program specifically by providing direction for recruiting advocates, spot lighting areas for “start-up” focus, and proposing ways to strengthen the program. (Roma Lee Taunton, Richard Thompson, Rev. Kendyl Gibbons. The authors acknowledge invaluable assistance with data analysis from Russell Feldhausen and Andrea Jonson.)

Congregational Notice

for Annual Meeting 5/16/2021

Remember back in May 2020, when we had our first-ever virtual Annual Meeting? It seems so long ago, doesn’t it, back when everyone was just getting the hang of doing things virtually and wondering how long all this was going to last? Well, that time of year has come around again and most of us have gotten a lot more comfortable with Zoom rooms for meetings and presentations and YouTube Live. Unfortunately, it’s still not feasible to meet in person yet – though we’ll hopefully be able to start seeing each other at some events this summer before having services in person this fall!

 Therefore, the Board is calling for our Annual Meeting to be held on May 16th, 2021 at 1pm, using the church’s Zoom room, to undertake the annual business of the church. We will also simulcast it to YouTube channel same as Sunday morning services. Voting members (those congregation members who have made a financial contribution of record in the last 2 years) will approve the minutes of last year’s meeting, vote on the proposed budget for the 2021 – 2022 church year, and vote for elected leadership positions, such as members of the Board, and Audit, Endowment, and Nominating Committees. If you aren’t sure if you qualify as a voting member, please contact the church office for help.  As we get closer to the Annual Meeting, an email will go out to qualified voting members with instructions for voting via electronic ballot, just like last year.   Your current Nominating Committee has submitted the following list of candidates for those positions: 

2021 Annual Meeting Slate BIOs

Alex Westerfelt for Treasurer (1 yr)

In 1996 Alex began attending All Souls and joined soon thereafter. Having learned early in life that the best way to become connected in a new group is to work side by side with others, I signed up to work on the Grounds Committee. Later I added participation in the Religious Services Committee and then the Board of Trustees as a member, Vice President, and later President.

My professional life, from which I retired a few years ago, included stints as a social work faculty member at Taylor University and KU, researcher at KC Free Health Clinic (now KC Care Health Center), health care foundation consultant, and process improvement specialist at the medical college at Ohio University. I have lived in 17 cities in 7 states and moved 23 times since graduating college. I left KC in 2006 to join family in Ohio and devote time to a novel in progress. Life moved in directions simultaneously wonderful and difficult, as it is wont to do, and I returned to my much-loved KC in 2018 by way of the world’s most disastrous move, so designated by all who hear the tale. In 2020 I rose from the ashes resolved to re-engage at All Souls just in time to see the doors close, a virtual room open in its place, and the webcam on my computer die. Life moves in directions simultaneously wonderful and difficult. The uncompleted novel remains the constant in my life.

Many members of All Souls have supported me and significantly shaped the pathway of my life. Serving as treasurer or in any capacity where I might have something to offer affords me the privilege to pay it forward. I am excited to once again be active in the life of All Souls.

Richard Thompson for Assistant Treasurer (1 yr)

Richard has been a member since 2008. Richard is the organizer of the LGBTQ Pride Table and is on the steering committee for the Human Rights Campaign. He has also actively contributed to the All Souls Weekenders group, service projects, Friends of Community Media, and assisted with All Souls fundraising. He is completing his first year on the Board and will now be serving our community as Asst Treasurer.

Bonnie Postlethwaite for Secretary (1 yr)

Bonnie is Dean Emeritus of UMKC Libraries since her retirement as Dean of Libraries in July 2020.  She joined UMKC Libraries as Associate Dean in 2006 and became Dean in 2012.  She has held previous positions at Baker University as the Associate Vice President of Information Services, Tufts University, The Faxon Company, a library subscription agency, and the Cleveland Museum of Art.  She holds an MA in Art History from the University of Kansas and a master’s in library and Information Science from the University of Illinois.   Her undergraduate degrees are in French and Education also from KU. 

She began attending All Souls in the Fall of 2008 and became a member in 2009.  All Souls has provided a like-minded community where spiritual growth has been possible.  Bonnie served on the Adult Education Committee, several of the renovation-related committees, the Lay Committee for Jack Gaede’s internship, and has ushered when we were gathering in Bragg before the pandemic.  Bonnie has served on several boards during her career as a librarian.

Andrea Jonson (3 yr, 2nd term)

Andrea joined 18 years ago to give her daughter, Tori, a spiritual home. In that time she has co-edited the Flame for 3 years, co-founded the Harry Potter Camp and helped run it for the first several years. served on a search committee and followed a group of youth through RE for about 6 years, including going to Boston with them for their Coming of Age trip. 

She served a term on both the Nominating and Auditing Committees. She has served on HR, the Renovation Concept Team, attended Midwest Leadership School (MWLS) in 2017 and helped with the 150-history book. She is currently the chair of the Social Media and Electronic Communication Team (SMECT) and runs cameras to stream the sermons.

She has served one term on the board during that time she served 10 months as Vice President and 14 as President.

David Robinson (3 yr)

David has been a member of the All Souls congregation since 1998 after moving to Kansas City from New Mexico. Until his retirement in 2017, he has headed a series of nonprofit organizations whose missions were to increase the participation of people with disabilities in their communities and to promote a more accessible community. His responsibilities included reviewing monthly financial and annual budget proposals. David has been a ready volunteer for the ASUU hunger outreach program and the annual book sale. He is completing his third term as the ASUU Assistant Treasurer. 

Cheryl Westra  (3 yr, 2nd term)

Cheryl came to All Souls years ago looking for a welcoming community for her young family. She has served in the RE program, with Caring Connections, the Warming Center, the Hunger Outreach Team, and on the current Board of Trustees. Cheryl and her spouse Matthew have 4 young adult children. 

For Nominating Committee:

Dave Black (2 yr, 2nd term)

David enjoys this century and a half historic church of venerable and new people lucky enough to welcome what can be in our internal and external communities. Since 2004, he has experienced six or seven years of the hard work from your Stewardship Com, chaired and years of projects on Fundraising, vice-chaired and years of projects on Social Responsibility Board since its inception, chaired and years of Special Offering Com, joys of Potter Summer Camp and volunteering in Sunday School, Steering Committee of Capital Campaign, details and nitty gritty of Master Planning Committee, profound respect for colleagues and lessons while on Vision and Values Com, soulfulness of winters with our Warming Center, camaraderie of our Hunger Outreach Team, served on NomCom about a decade ago then again in 2019 and chaired NomCom this past year, recruiting and coordinating for our beloved Religious Odysseys, …

He looks forward to 17 more years of adventures with good peeps, as we try to make a difference in our church, city, world.

Marilyn Carpenter (2 yr)

Marilyn moved to Kansas City in 2014 after 35 years at the University of Alaska Anchorage as professor of English. All Souls has provided me with wonderful friends as I begin a new life.  I started the yoga program at All Souls and taught a class every Tuesday and Thursday for three years until the pandemic. 

She oversees the Christmas decorations at All Souls at Christmas time. Served on the Facilities committee and oversaw reupholstering worn out chairs in Bragg sanctuary.  Most recently during the pandemic she along with seven other women made the huge fiber mural called Nature’s Promise that hangs in the Conover alcove. 

Anita Malott (2 yr)

Anita was introduced to the UU Church through a friend in 1983 and knew immediately she had found a home.  Became a regular member until 1992 when she moved to Chicago and went on a path exploring pagan spirituality.  She returned to All Souls in 2015 with her spouse, Julie Koehler.  She joined the membership committee and soon after became the co-chair then chair of the committee.  Committed to the well-being of All Souls because of its focus on personal spiritual growth, church community and the goal of a more just society.

For Audit Committee:

Ruth Robarge (3yr)

Ruth has been a member of All Souls KC since 2/29/2004. Since that was a leap year.  She has been a member for 4 “years”! Serving on several teams and committees including Worship, Nominating, Un-Plaza Art Fair Concessions, Renovation, 150th Anniversary, and the Board of Trustees including 2 years as President. 

Born in Topeka, received her bachelor’s degree from St Mary, Leavenworth, and an MBA from University of Phoenix. She works full-time for SS&C, formerly DST Financial where she pushes buttons creating/updating/distributing mutual fund accounts. Previously worked various positions with AT&T.  Ruth plays the clarinet (and sometimes saxophone) with the Mid America Freedom Band and currently serves on their Board of Directors. Her spouse Barbara and she have been together 39 years and married LEGALLY 6 years. She has sharpened her pencil and look forward to working on the Audit Committee. 

For Endowment Committee:

Jamie Koelsch (3 yr, 2nd term)

Jamie has been a member of All Souls since 2014. She has served in various roles, to include: Serving as Co-Chair of the 2016 Capital Campaign Committee and Assistant Treasurer on the Board of Trustees. She worked on the Membership, and Finance Committees. She has served on the Endowment Committee since 2018.

Employee compensation and Benefits Resolution

As discussion of the budget for the next fiscal year gets underway, the board would like us all to understand how important it is for staff morale and trust in All Souls as a responsible employer that we not have random proposals for adjusting staff compensation, benefits, and contracts floating around.  Any concerns or suggestions about staff compensation should be directed to the HR committee, and the board is committed to the following, in order to prevent needless alarm and frustration for our dedicated employees.

On March 17, 2021, the Board made the following resolution:

The Board hereby resolves that the details of each employee’s compensation and benefits shall be confidential to the HR Committee and supervisory staff. No changes in compensation structure, benefits, or terms of employment shall be proposed or discussed with any employee without the involvement of the minister and the HR Committee.

This is the most current version of this policy. To see all policies and active resolutions, please go to the Policies and Resolutions Page.

Questions about this or any policy or resolution may be directed to

Proposed Amendment to Update Pronouns in Governing Document

Please read the motion below and the resolution supporting it. Both will be presented to the congregation at the upcoming annual meeting. If you have questions or comments ahead of the meeting, please email

Motion to amend the All Souls’ Governing Documents

Amend the Constitution, Bylaws and Policies to use only gender-neutral pronouns they/them/theirs.

Resolution on Gender Neutral Language in All Souls Governing Documents 


WHEREAS the All Souls Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Policy originally adopted in May of 2016 states “All Souls is committed to affirmative action, equal opportunity and nondiscrimination in all aspects of church life. These include race, ethnicity, color, national origin, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual/affectational orientation, age, ability/ableness, socioeconomic and educational background, socioeconomic status, and religion. This commitment supports the All Souls Mission to build a respectful, caring community; inspire personal and spiritual growth; and create a just and compassionate society. Simple absence of discrimination is not sufficient.” 

WHEREAS All Souls seeks to be respectful of all members of our community; and 

WHEREAS All Souls respects each person’s right to determine their own identity; and 

WHEREAS transgender matters have gained increasing attention in recent years, and the governing documents of All Souls can better reflect a range of gender identities and be inclusive of transgender people; and 

WHEREAS most notably, the use of male and female pronouns (he/him/his, she/her/hers) is being challenged, and many argue for the acceptance and use of they (i.e. not s/he, which is still based on a binary notion of gender) as an epicene—a gender-neutral singular pronoun: 


THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the All Souls Board of Trustees and the Congregation agree to use only gender-neutral pronouns they/their/theirs instead of the current practice of using gender specific pronouns he/she in All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church governing documents to include the constitution, bylaws, policies and resolutions.

Join the 10th Memorial Day witness for a Nuke-Free World

Nuclear weapon resisters “die-in” under the eye of KC MO police on Memorial Day 2017. The die-in is on public property, a statement of the lethal consequences of making parts for nuclear weapons.–Photo by Jim Hannah


Invites you to our 10th annual witness for a nuke-free world on Memorial Day. This year, that’s Monday, May 31st. Please plan to join us, rain or shine, at one of two times/places:

  • At 10:30 a.m., we’ll park on Prospect at Mo. Hwy. 150, the west edge of the property of the nuclear weapon parts plant, the National Security Campus. It’s in KC MO but south of Grandview. We’ll walk past the NSC about a mile, or bike or use a wheelchair, to the east entry to the NSC entry road.
  • At about 11:30 a.m., we’ll hold a rally for a nuke-free world at the entry road to the NSC, 14510 Botts Road, KC MO.

During our walk, we’ll wave flags from the (thus far) 54 countries across the world that have ratified the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. During the rally, we’ll hold a die-in. Yes, it’s Memorial Day, and we recall the hundreds of persons whose families say they died from toxins at Bannister Federal Complex, home to the old nuclear weapon parts plant. The NSC is the new plant that, for about $1.2 billion per year of taxpayers’ money, in our back yard, makes parts for the US nuclear arsenal such as fuses, wiring, and guidance devices.

We’ll mask up, use social distancing, and have chairs available at the Botts Road site.

We are grateful to All Souls, whose members in 1982 started the committee that became PeaceWorks, and whose members have continued supporting PeaceWorks year by year!

For info, contact Henry Stoever (of All Souls),

Rena Jonathan | August 12, 1921 – April 14, 2021

Rena Jonathan | August 12, 1921 – April 14, 2021 – All Souls Kansas CityAll Souls Kansas City (

Dick Dawson | August 2, 1935 – April 20, 2021

Dick Dawson | August 2, 1935 – April 20, 2021 – All Souls Kansas CityAll Souls Kansas City (

Caring Connection

Do you know an All Souls member or friend who could use some extra attention and support — someone who’s had surgery, is ill, or is coping with another challenge? If so, alert Bonnie Schwarzenholz, chair of the
Caring Connection.

Do you need or know of an All Souls member or friend who could benefit from a supportive Caring Circle? If so, call Dori Bader, Caring Connection volunteer, for information on Caring Circles and how to initiate one.

“Lost, Stolen, or Strayed.”

We regret to report that Butch Murphy’s sculpture Red Horse, which has been on indefinite loan to All Souls, has been clandestinely removed by a person or persons unknown.  If you should find it wandering in the neighborhood, or have any knowledge of its current whereabouts, please let the church office know.  We love Butch’s horses, and while we admire the taste of the would-be collector, we would like to have this one back.

Butch, we are sorry for this loss! – (816) 531-2131

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Virtual Attendance Figures for

March 2021

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Adult Education…

March 5th – May 28th | Asian Art | Peggy Schrock

March 5 @ 7:00 PM – May 28 @ 8:00 PM UTC

March 5th – May 28, 2021, Fridays at 1 PM via zoom.

In the Spring Peggy will take you on an exploration of Asian art and architecture with an emphasis on India, China, Japan, and Southeast Asia. You will consider the roles of Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism, Daoism, Confucianism, and Shinto in the visual expression of Central and East Asia.

Register here for Asian Art class: Asian Art

About Peggy:

Peggy earned her Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Illinois, Urban-Champaign and taught for thirty years at Murray State University, retired as full professor and awarded Professor Emeritus. She was twice awarded Outstanding Teacher of the year.+ GOOGLE CALENDAR+ ICAL EXPORT


Start:March 5 @ 7:00 PM UTCEnd:May 28 @ 8:00 PM UTCEvent Categories:All EventsLearningThe Arts

Jan. 27th – June 9th | How Christianity Took Over

January 27 @ 7:30 PM – June 9 @ 8:30 PM UTC+0

If Wednesday afternoons are a good time for some stimulating thought and connections at All Souls for you, consider joining our ongoing history of scripture Adult Religious Education series.

We have looked at the origins of both Jewish and Christian literature, and this season we will begin to consider the growth of the Biblical tradition in How Christianity Took Over, starting as a cult in the Roman Empire, and eventually dominating Western Europe and the Byzantine Empire. It’s an amazing story, full of colorful characters and amazing tales.

Click onto the Zoom Room from the All Souls website for check in at 1:00, and class discussion at 1:30, starting  Wednesday, January 27th.

Sign up here to receive notes and updates:  How Christianity Took Over Sign Up+ GOOGLE CALENDAR+ ICAL EXPORT


Start:January 27 @ 7:30 PM UTC+0End:June 9 @ 8:30 PM UTC+0Event Categories:Adult Religious EducationAll EventsCongregational EventsLearningRelational Groups

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