The American Ethical Union had a big week last week and we are looking forward to another one this week. Last week we focused quite a bit on helping people find and use our new Connections web forum and get Ethical Societies’ online events on the Connections calendar. I think this went particularly well with a number of Societies putting their events on the calendar. We have also had a nice increase in posts to the web forum but more about that below.

One highlight of the week was Jone Johnson Lewis’ training for people hosting Platform Meetings via Zoom video conferencing. Jone’s training was chock-full of information, well attended, and well received! It was also recorded – contact me at for a link.

The other big news last week was the rapid expansion of instances of hackers disrupting Zoom meetings. This happened to at least one Ethical Society who had two of their meetings interrupted by bands of intruders who did a number of objectionable things to disrupt the meetings. We have been working to develop practices to help our Societies protect themselves from these disruptions.

The big news this week begins with yesterday’s rollout of the new Virtual SEEK program hosted by Casey Gardonio-Foat and Sonja Kueppers. This is a new national ethics for children program based on the program offered by the Washington Ethical Society’s program and made available to all of the children who attend Ethical Society ethics for children programs. Children from at least five Societies joined the program on “Kindness” on Sunday which included video presentations, get to know you activities, and time with similar age kids in virtual Breakout Rooms. Ethics for Children program staff from a number of Societies helped plan the program and will continue with the planning for future Sundays.

There has also been a bit of good news on the financial front. A provision of the CARES Act that was recently signed into law provides for forgivable loans for employers who have suffered financially from the coronavirus outbreak. AEU Treasurer, Tom Castelnuovo hosted a very helpful information meeting about the loan program last week and we expect it will be a significant help for many of our Societies as well as for the AEU.

Going forward, we are looking to make our new Connections web forum even more informative, useful, and fun (in no particular order) and would like your help with that. The best way to help is to Join the forum and start posting. If you are not ready to join the forum you are still welcome to provide feedback on what is in the forum and to recommend additions to it. The more the merrier!

Here are the Categories:

Coronavirus 2019
Safety and health recommendations

Online Meetings
Online meetings and activities you can join

Online Communications Management
Setting up and operating online programs and services (includes tutorials)

Social Connections
Ideas and tips for social contacts at a distance

Resources for Children and Families
Ideas and tips for families and children

Fiscal Concerns and Recommendations
How is your organization affected economically by the coronavirus outbreak?

Wellness Resources
Ideas and tips for difficult times

Inspiring and Uplifting
What is touching your heart and lifting your spirits?

I need a break from coronavirus news!
Satiric songs (and more) to lift your spirits

Ideas and recommendations

Wishing you well as you navigate the week ahead!
Bart Worden
AEU Executive Director

Please note, this post originally appeared at