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Sample Notes for Newcomers
Membership Growth & Outreach, Hospitality

Carol Marks, Unitarian Universalist Church of Bloomington, Indiana

Seeking the spirit
Building our community
Changing the world

Especially for Newcomers

New U Classes. The Membership Committee offers a three-week class that will help you explore this religious community with 6-8 other newcomers. Learn the history of this congregation and the basics Of Unitarian Universalist (UU) district and national associations, and meet church leaders and committee chairs. These classes are offered twice a year, usually near the beginning of the fall and spring semesters. A signup sheet is available at the Newcomer Welcoming Station near the front door. For more specific information, contact [NAME], Chair of the Membership Committee.

Newcomer Mugs. The salmon-colored mugs at the coffee hour after our services are reserved for newcomers. They help us to identify newcomers to our community so that we can seek you out and welcome you to our community. We invite you to use a salmon-colored mug, your first month or two and help us to identify you.

Second Sunday Conversations with the Minister. The second Sunday of each month, there is an opportunity for newcomers to meet with the Reverend [NAME] to discuss our church. This small gathering meets at 12:30 in the minister's office, and refreshments are provided. Childcare can be arranged with sufficient notice. Please contact [NAME] at the church office.

Newcomer Receptions. Twice each year, Rev. [NAME] welcomes newcomers to her home. Those who have recently attended the New U class, signed up to receive our newsletter, The Prologue, or signed the Membership Book will receive an invitation automatically. All newcomers are welcome, so please call the church office if you would like to be invited.

Food and Fellowship

Fellowship Dinners. These dinners are a round of informal potlucks for groups of 7-10 adults. The shared meals are held in the participants' homes about six times between October and April. Dress casually and bring a dish to complement the entree prepared by the host/ess, who will contact you to set the menu and date. Each Fellowship Dinner participant hosts one meal during, the year and is a guest at the others. The list of participants for each month's dinners appears in The Prologue. Feel free to join the Fellowship Dinners at any time during the year. Contact [NAME] or sign up in the church office to be included in the next month's dinners.

Classes and Discussions

Religious Education. Our church provides religious education classes during the 11:00 service for children in pre-school through middle school. Topics covered include world religions, the history and tenets of Unitarian-Universalism, and peace and social justice. For more information, contact our Director of Religious Education, [NAME].

YRUU. Young Religious Unitarian Universalists, ages 14-20, meet weekly for fellowship, pizza, and discussion of topics relating to their spiritual and religious growth. The group is led by adult facilitators.

Adult Religious Education. If you don't see it on the literature rack, ask for the Religious Education prospectus, which describes the classes offered during the church year to discuss social and spiritual concerns. Most adult classes are held in the evening at the church. You may register for these classes by calling the church office.

Sunday Morning Forum. Beginning this fall, there will be a forum each Sunday morning at 9:30 to discuss issues of importance to our church community and to the larger world. Two of these forums each month will be conducted by the Social Justice Coordinating Council. Suggestions for topics are encouraged. Contact the church office for more information.

Groups and Activities

Beacon. Beacon is the young adult/ campus ministry program for those 18-35 years of age. While diversity of membership is encouraged, the majority of Beacon members have been IU graduate or undergraduate students. Look in The Prologue for announcements regarding the group s discussions and informal suppers, or contact [NAME] for more details.

Women's Alliance. Women of all ages meet at noon on the first Thursday of the month for a brown bag lunch and program. For more information, contact [NAME].

Elder Men. Men of retirement age, but not necessarily retired, meet at noon on the first Thursday of each month for conversation and fellowship. Call [NAME] for more details.

Singletarians. Singles of all ages meet to share a variety of activities, including lunches following y the service. Contact [NAME] for more information.

Choir. New voices are eagerly accepted at any time regardless of proficiency level. Rehearsals are held Thursday nights from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. at the church. The choir sings a wide variety of music, and child care is provided. Call choir director [NAME] for more information.

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