Unity at the Lake Logo

September/October 2011 Newsletter


Letter from our spiritual leader - Stew

Yahoo! Yeehah! And Hallelujah!!

UATL is about to turn 17, and as many teenagers do, we’re leaving home and moving into our own place! We’re about to sign a 5-year lease with the City for our new sacred space at 1195 Rufus Allen Blvd!

As soon as the buildings are ready to go, all our activities will be happening there (stay tuned to announcements and email updates!).

We are so excited and our hearts are so full, which is a blessing because there are a lot of details to consider that otherwise, at times, seem overwhelming. Whenever we approach “overwhelm” we remember how beautifully and gracefully everything related to the new space has gone. We also remember that we are a powerful and loving community and that’s a beautiful thing! Together we’ve held this vision, we’ve each contributed to its unfolding and now we can “work” together to bring it into physical manifestation! This past Saturday, for instance, 24 folks showed up for the initial cleanup work and/or to write a blessing on the walls.

There are so many ways you can help, depending on the amount of energy and/or money you wish to give, and everything, no matter what, is helpful. We are starting a wish list and it will run the gamut from basic needs such as garbage containers, signage, a sofa bed (so your Spiritual Leaders can sleep there when huge storms threaten), a high quality, quiet vacuum cleaner and folding tables to more “non-essential” items such as a doggie bed, crystals, large crystal singing bowl, and CD burner. Then there are the decorating wish list items such as fabric panels, altar table items and art work. There will also be services needed such as landscaping and creating a beautiful meditation garden, with a labyrinth and waterfall. You can talk to us about donating specific items or donating money, either for a specific wish list item or to add to our Building/Sacred Space Fund.

There are so many wonderful things about this space and what we can do there, it’s impossible to list them all. Did you know that the property extends to the fence behind the buildings (can you envision a community vegetable garden?) and all the way to the left (30 yards?) to where that same fence meets Rufus Allen Blvd? Did you know this property is smack dab in the center of town (check it out on GoogleMaps!) and how meaningful that is energetically? And in numerology ‘1195’ symbolizes sanctuary/house of the mystic? Did you know that the Council has spent much time catching and holding a vision of our new sacred space? Interestingly enough, it was immediately after we did an exercise at our Council meeting, envisioning all the possibilities a sacred space could house, that this building showed up. Besides serving the community through our services and the aforementioned gardens, we see our sacred space blessing our Lake Tahoe community with a bookstore; healing center; classes, community events and celebrations – just to name a few of the ideas!

Having left its childhood home, this teenager known as Unity at the Lake is poised and ready to take the leap of faith into fully realized adulthood. With God and spiritual truths as our beacon and GPS system, and each of us as angels for each other, we know that we know that we know that the best is yet to be.

OFFICE HOURS: (office phone # is 530-544-2266):


Stay tuned to your weekly updates as we expect to have expanded hours in our new sacred space.

You are cordially invited to come by and sit in the sacred energy, browse the lending library, or just say hello! It’s a wonderful space!!

Of course our Spiritual Leaders, Hillary & Stew, are ALWAYS available (except Sundays or Mondays, unless an emergency) during the week and are eager to meet with you for spiritual counseling** and/or prayer, to talk over the Sunday talk or Unity principles… or just to chat. “There are so many of you we’d love to know better.” Feel free to call the office anytime and make a date with them.

Spiritual counseling is what you might consider if you need a reminder of the Truth of what you are; a tool to access that Truth to help in a certain situation, help with how to communicate what’s alive in you, an empathetic ear, etc.


9th Annual Bob Manlee Memorial Kite Flying and Volunteer Appreciation Picnic:
Immediately following Sunday celebration, 9/25, meet us at Baldwin Beach (left side parking lot). There is a $7 fee and we will be shuttling through the pay station as much as possible. Celebrate UATL’s 17th birthday at this joyful gathering. We will fly kites, enjoy the sunshine and camaraderie, and break bread (or at least pizza) and celebrate each other. We will be making the kites the day before in our new sacred space…stay tuned for details.

The Couples “Advance":
Facilitated by Hillary & Stew at Zephyr Point Presbyterian Center, October 7-9 is for any and all committed couples. It’s about advancing on the path back to our authentic selves, individually and together. With humor, beautiful music (provided by Kristina and Jazz!) and the glory of nature to help open our hearts, we will look deeply at ourselves and our relationship through the lens of building on what is already good and beautiful and true. We teach practical tools and communication skills that you will be able to implement immediately, but more importantly, we will all come away with a renewed intention to put more loving and conscious intention into our relationships (we find that most of us put much more time and energy and focus into maintaining our cars and homes than our relationships!). Everything we do is grounded in timeless, universal spiritual (Unity) principles and everything is enfolded lovingly in a safe, joyous, fun and sacred container, in which you can explore as deeply as you choose to. $475 per couple includes 2 nights’ lake view lodging and all meals. Please see the flier at Sunday services or on our UATL website for more info, or call the Bittmans. We thank you for considering joining us. Click for flier

Unity’s World Day of Prayer is coming up very soon, as in next week, Thursday September 8th. From 8am through 5pm
we will be holding vigil in the (old) office, joining Unity friends around the world in conscious prayer as we celebrate the diversity and joy of being expressions of God lighting the world with hope and harmony. We hope to fill every ½-hour time slot with at least 2 folks and there are still many slots available. If you cannot sign up, we welcome you to come by whenever you can and stay for as long or short as you want. All that is involved is to walk in, sit down and be one with Love and then send it out. Please call the office or Hillary for a sign-up time. There will also be a sheet available to sign up on Sunday, August 4th.

Wednesday September 21st, at Regan Beach, 5:30-6pm. Join us as we gather in recognition and honoring of our oneness. We’ll say “May Peace Prevail” in the different languages from our peace pole and read prayers for peace from different faiths and traditions. Jazz and Kristina will lead us in some songs, too.


Stay tuned to our weekly email updates because these tend to be spontaneous Last Sunday an amazing young man visited and briefly spoke with us as he stopped in SLT on his bicycle journey from his home in Santa Barbara to Washington D.C. For the 2nd year in a row, this 15-year old will lobby in our Capitol for funding help for the half-homeless. To find out more about Santa Barbara’s program (perhaps we can be the instruments to get one going here) and/or to donate to Thomas’ ride, Team Jessop across America, see www.TJAA.us

Saturday, Sept. 18th, Clean Tahoe is sponsoring the Great Sierra River Cleanup Sat, September 17, 9am – 12pm “Help us keep the rivers, beaches, streams and creeks on the South Shore clean and beautiful. Bring the family”.


Wednesdays, NOON-12:45, PRAYER/MEDITATION CIRCLE is the best 45 minute God vacation/spa package you can give yourself. As with everything in Unity, we start with ourselves, sitting to align with the Divine Presence of Love we are in Truth. From that consciousness we are able to hold a new perspective of hope, clarity and well-being, grounded in wholeness, for ourselves, everyone in our prayer list and the entire world.

Awakening Wednesdays, every Wednesday evening, 6:45-8:15pm A time where we can take the principles we talk about and bring them deeper into our understanding. Through meditation, circle sharing, book studies and shared tools we create a fun and inspiring time to share and grow together. Please join us!


As a loving reminder, our Celebration Services begin right on time at 10am. We appreciate your support in this.


arrow September 4th: The power of Order (wear dark green)

arrow October 2nd: The power of Zeal (wear orange)

arrow October 9th: Guest speaker (to be announced)


Well… the dreams, prayers, and visions of UATL members have finally brought us to this exhilarating moment. Admittedly, I have only been involved with UATL for less than two years. But in that short time, I have felt the energy of your prayers for growth into an independent holy space. It has been the dream of so many. Some, I am told, have held this vision for almost 20 years. As a proud UATL Council Member, I know too that it has come to reality through the hard work and dedication of a few wonderful souls. We send thanks to all who have dreamed and worked to bring this to fruition. Paraphrased from a Charles Fillmore affirmation, we have had faith in the substance of God working in and through us to increase and bring abundance into our congregation. With the keys in hand, we are witnessing abundance in living form. And we are grateful. Now we have begun the exciting task of transforming the leased buildings and earth into our very own sacred and special place of gathering. What a blessing! While it will entail much work to convert the area into the living, breathing spiritual home for all of us, the energies and monies spent will undoubtedly serve our community for decades to come. I’m just bubbling over with excitement for what this means for the current UATL congregation, and for the not-yet-realized UATL members out there in the South Lake area. We know we are a blessing to this community, and this new sacred space is a reminder of just how very blessed we already are.

With much enthusiasm and joy, ~ Sherry


YEP teachers: We are beginning a new chapter in UATL history. This includes a beautiful permanent space for our Youth program(s) and for the time being at least our own playground equipmentJ. What better way to usher it in than with a strong core of adults to encircle our special young ones and let them know we value them and that their journey is of primary importance to us. Please speak to Hillary if you have an inkling of interest and feel free to share any fears you might have.

Greeter: If you enjoy smiling and giving hugs, and it is important to you that everyone is lovingly welcomed who walks through the doors on a Sunday morning, then you are the right person to be a greeter. Join the team regularly or just once in a while. We are looking for a greeter this Sunday, September 4th and any Sunday beyond.


We are in the middle of planning our October Harvest Our Dreams fun(d)raiser. Everyone can become involved by sitting down and thinking about what you love to do or are good at. Can you do handiwork, volunteer 2 or 4 hours of your time, or perhaps offer house-cleaning or dog-sitting? It is unlimited what you might offer as a silent auction prize. Do you eat out a lot at a favorite restaurant? Ask them if they are willing to donate a meal for two (make sure to ask us first before you contact them – we don’t want anyone being asked twice or even more). You can even buy a gift certificate yourself. You can ask any business you frequent or buy a gift certificate there. If we all do a little then we will have the biggest, most successful fun(d)raiser ever.

Some inspirational quotes from Rumi:

arrow "Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it."

arrow "When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy”

arrow "Dance, when you're broken open. Dance, if you've torn the bandage off. Dance in the middle of the fighting. Dance in your blood. Dance when you're perfectly free."


In accordance with universal spiritual law, Unity at the Lake tithes 10% on every dollar we take in. We joyfully affirmed and celebrated our abundance thru tithing to the following during July-August, 2011: * Masankho Banda *SLT Women’s Center Girl’s Empowerment Program *West Central Region, Unity Worldwide Ministries *Unity in the Community *Diane Bush *Unity of Joplin *Unity Institute Total of outgoing tithes for this period was $1,226.36. Thank you, God!

As of 8/31/11, our bank balances are as follows: Bank of the West Checking: $4,343.83 (covers everyday spending and bills) Bank of the West Savings (our Hands and Hearts for Christmas fund): $129.49 Everbank Checking (general reserve fund): $18,016.99 (of which $3523 constitutes the Ministerial fund) Everbank Money Market (building fund): $27,244.32



Our Sunday talks are now available on our website, beginning shortly after each Sunday service.

Tell your friends! This is a wonderful way to introduce other folks to the Unity message.You can now make donations (for regular tithes, building fund, Minister’s Fund & Hands and Hearts) and purchase all the below CDs, plus CDs of Sunday celebration services, directly from the website via PayPal or credit card.

Special Thanks: to Diane Bush for the countless hours spent on creating the exact plans for our sacred space based on listening to our dreams; to Karen & Brooks Martin for first catching this vision and then holding it for 17 years; to Dory Smith and Ken Cross for the hours they will be spending on bringing those plans into actualization; to our design committee, Karen, Sue, Kristina, Jazz, Karen, Evelyn, Cindy, Paige, Janice and Sherry and everyone else who will drive a nail or surround us in love during this unfolding! Speaking of Sue, more special thanks for the endless patience and energy you have put into checking out every building in town these past years and for wading through channels to facilitate the miracle of us getting our new home!

A Fun Bio Sketch to know about Janice Eastburn, Council President:

Occupation: Social Worker

Hobbies/interests: Cycling…hiking…animals…photography…reading…traveling

Favorite movie: “It’s a Wonderful Life”

Favorite music: Beatles and Melissa Etheridge and classic rock

Favorite other pastime: Reading at the beach

Greatest influence on your life & why: My mom, because she taught me strength

Best advice you were ever given: “Don’t eat soup out of cans that are bulging,” as well as, "Don't judge your insides by other people's outsides,” my college professor

Describe yourself in 5 words: passionate – sensitive – funny – caring - loyal


If you miss the format of our past newsletters and would like to volunteer your skills in that regard in the future please let us know!