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Gloria Bertonis

Gloria Bertonis
Member Reflection

October 11, 2015

“My Unitarian Universalist Reflections”
by Gloria Bertonis

I was going through the most devastating time of my life, after I had been a member here for only a few months. But I was embraced by one of the founding members, who had just gone through the same crushing marital abandonment. Her name was Charlotte Melville. She introduced me to my life companion, Ed Weiser, and to Star Island, where we took our children for unforgettable summer retreats, communing closely with nature on that tiny, innocent island.

In the early 80’s & 90’s, I performed many necessary functions, like finding a speaker for every Sunday in those early years when we did not have ministers. I wrote and published the newsletters and Sunday programs, presented lectures on many topics when I could not obtain a speaker. I led women’s spirituality groups and book discussions, where I insisted that every woman know in the core of her being that she is a living goddess. I ran the Caring Committee as well. I participated in social protests, political movements in keeping with our Principles, interfaith events, and fundraisers, until my declining health made me stop.

I have looked forward to every Sunday morning’s speaker and the social hour following it. I have always learned something new, got deeper spiritual insight, and felt stimulated to be a better person in every way. That’s why I always take notes to review later. In the earlier years I loved the discussions that always followed the speaker and the wonderful dinners and other social events we held in members’ homes, including mine.

For almost 40 years I have never missed a Sunday unless traveling or hospitalized. My Unitarian family is precious to me. Where else could I ever have met such intelligent, accomplished, thoughtful people?

Thank you!