Forum Discussion Group

Forum Schedule

Oct. 2 – “Found in the Wilderness” will be the topic of George Grimm-Howell, our 2022-23 Intern Minister. He will be utilizing his poems and speaking on major life changes, such as the loss of a spouse, loss of a lifetime family home, or just retirement in general that can leave us feeling “lost in the wilderness.” George holds a master of divinity degree from United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities. He lives in University City, Mo. with his family and is a long-time member of First Unitarian Church of St. Louis.

Oct. 9 – Michael Dunn, long time General Manager of KBIA, will discuss the station, its history, its coverage of local news, its funding, its subsidiary stations, and also National Public Radio, of which KBIA is a member station. Both KBIA and NPR have been celebrating their 50th anniversaries.

Oct. 16 – David Leuthold will lead a discussion of “Changing Demographics in the World.” This is one of the programs in the Great Decisions Class offered by the Foreign Policy Association. Several copies of the Great Decisions book are available so that participants can read the chapter ahead of the discussion.

Oct. 23 – Diana Moxon will discuss the history and activities of KOPN and comment on the role of community radio across the nation. KOPN recently moved to a new building.

Oct. 30 – Fred Young and the Reparations History Group will present, “Where did they go? African Americans in rural Boone County, before and after Missouri reparations.” At one time, Boone County had a rural African American community farming in the Three Creeks area. This is their story, and this is our history.

The Forum Discussion Group is an adult issues-and-answers discussion program that meets year-round from 9 to 10 a.m. each Sunday. Forum meets in the Forum Room/Library at the southeast corner of the lower level of our church.

The lower level is wheelchair-accessible from the lower-level parking lot entrance.

In Fall 2018 Forum observed its 37th year of existence, having become an important part of local UU experience shortly after our church transitioned from a lay-led fellowship to a community with a full-time minister in October 1980. Forum did not meet starting in March 2020 because of the Covid pandemic but resumed meeting on Sept. 11, 2022.

Bill Clark was the long-time programmer for Forum

Among Forum leaders in its nearly four decades of existence have been George and Lois Parker, Arthur McArthur, Bob Breitenbach, Dan Spies, Charlie Atkins, and Carla and Wayne Anderson. For the past nine years, Columbia Daily Tribune columnist Bill Clark has been responsible for 10 months annually, while Carla and Wayne Anderson are program directors for April and September. March is devoted to women’s issues and personalities.

Forum looks into community, state, national and international issues, including issues in society, the arts, history, the sciences, and the environment, and occasionally issues within the church. Guests have included musical performers, educational and political leaders, political candidates, representatives of other religions, and leaders in the arts, music, theater, and city and county government.

A typical program format consists of remarks by a guest speaker followed by a question-and-answer period.

Forum is not intended to be a spiritual experience, though spiritual matters such as the soul of dogs occasionally appear on the schedule. The entire community is invited to attend Forum. Church membership or an enrollment is not a requirement – all that is needed is an interest in contemporary issues. A dollar in the coffee can on occasion is appreciated, however. Just show up – you’ll be an immediate Forum member.

Child care is available during the Forum sessions from September through May; however, it is seldom needed because most Forum attendees are older adults. Forum leaders hope to remedy this situation by attracting younger adults, whom the group cordially invites to stretch their horizons and expand their UU experiences. In addition to the listing at the top of this page, scheduled Forum topics are included on the Home Page and on the church calendar.

George Frissell presented on “Religion and Regalia” at Forum on May 8, 2016.
Andrew Twaddle took the photos in the slideshow above.