The First Unitarian Universalist (UU) Society, a congregation of 108 adult members and 40 children and youth, has been a steady Fair Share honor society for 18 years. In describing why the congregation has sustained this commitment to generously supporting the funding of our Association for so long, minister Patricia Tummino succinctly states, “We want to keep our Unitarian Universalism as strong as it can be.” It is done primarily through the generosity of individual members and friends.
Before Patricia’s call to First Unitarian Universalist Society a decade ago, Rev. Elizabeth Tarbox served as their minister. During Elizabeth’s ministry the congregation’s relationship with their Unitarian Universalist Association gained strength. The trend continues to the present day and is reflected in the First UU Society’s membership development practices.
Before prospective members join the First UU Society, they must be very clearly identified as Unitarian Universalist and demonstrate that understanding by contributing toward both the Ballou Channing District and the Unitarian Universalist Association’s Annual Program Fund expenses, as well as making a pledge to the congregation. Provisions are made for those unable to make that level of contribution at any given time, but the expectations are clear and reasonable.
In addition to a strong and clear Unitarian Universalist identity, the First UU Society has some top-notch staff and programming. Rev. Tummino is joined on staff by Rev. Laurie Bilyeu who serves as the religious education professional, Jeannie Gagne as the Director of Music, and secretary, Valerie Ortelt. The First UU Society has also taken on the exciting new responsibility of being a teaching congregation, with its fourth intern minister, Elizabeth Gish.
Social Justice activities are central to the First UU Society, and the congregation has worked to compile a list of all the available social services and agencies in their area. In addition, the First UU Society has received a grant to create a new social justice website for the benefit of the Ballou Channing District congregations. The youth program is quite active as well, and a bridging ceremony was held recently for the junior youth making the transition into the senior youth program.
The First UU Society is a vital and active community and a strong Unitarian Universalist presence in their area. To learn more, visit First UU Society.
For more information contact web @ uua.org.
This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations.
Please consider making a donation today.
Last updated on Thursday, September 8, 2011.
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