Archives of Central East Region News
Archives of Central East Region News and Blog
  • Has Your Congregation Updated Your Leadership Information?

    It's that time of the year again. Your congregation has held its annual meeting and elected new officers, or its on your schedule. You have new committee chairs appointed to lead your work for next year. But have you told anyone outside the congregation about these changes?
    By Central East Region of the UUA | 6/8/2020
    Filed in: Better Together
  • CER Staff Offer Gatherings for Congregational Leaders

    We are living in times that are upending our routines and requiring us to think in new ways. We know there is no tried-and-true answer "out there" for us to research.
    By Central East Region of the UUA | 5/18/2020
    Filed in: Better Together
  • What’s In a Phrase?

    Most – if not all – of our current social ills (war, the climate crisis, racism, immigration, economic inequality, for-profit healthcare, for-profit schools, mass incarceration) are a result of a worldview that looks at both people and planet as things to be used to profit those...
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 2/10/2020
    Filed in: Better Together
  • LeaderLab Offers Resources, Classes and More for Congregational Leaders

    As Susan Frederick-Gray mentioned during her president’s report at General Assembly in June, LeaderLab is a tremendous resource for congregational leaders.
    By Kathy McGowan, Jonipher Kūpono Kwong, Renee Ruchotzke | 9/2/2019
    Filed in: Better Together
  • What is Your SuperPower?

    In our regional staff team we joke about our “superpowers”. These are fun, amazing skills each of us have that we like to joke about - for example, one of us can tetris 7 people’s luggage and equipment into the back of van in a matter of minutes, and another can knit fruits,...
    By Beth Casebolt | 6/14/2019
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Why a New Leadership School for Youth? River Rising

    What kind of leaders do[es] our faith and our planet need in a future that is as close as tomorrow? What does sustainable leadership look like when burnout and overwhelm are so prevalent?
    By Shannon Harper | 6/3/2019
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Introducing River Rising

    The Central East Region is excited to announce the creation of a new week-long youth leadership experience happening this summer in 2019. Rising River will include several aspects of the previous Goldmine Leadership School but with lots of new exciting changes.
    By Shannon Harper | 2/25/2019
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Opportunities to Be a Part of Summer Institute

    Opportunities to Be a Part of Summer Institute
    Filed in: Better Together
  • We Need Churches

    The communities where we live and work and go to school are constantly changing. The nation and the wider world is constantly changing.
    By Paula Cole Jones | 10/8/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Lead with Courage and Confidence

    Our church needed a new roof and we didn’t have the money to pay for it. We had a member who yelled at people during coffee hour. New members weren’t stepping up to volunteer, let alone be leaders. When new people did step up, their ideas were ignored....
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 9/3/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • New Online Course: Transgender Inclusion in Congregations

    Is your congregation ready to take your welcome to the next level?...
    By Alex Kapitan | 8/20/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Need Some Skills as a Board Member?

    Do you have new board members joining your leadership team this year? Do you have returning board members?...
    By Beth Casebolt | 8/6/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Grow Your Skills In Battling White Supremacy Culture This Summer!

    One of the things I love about summer is the way you can let concepts and ideas seep into you in a new way, swim around in your heart and gut, forming their own new paths of meaning and inspiring more active steps when the time is right. In that vein, the Central East Region...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • What Four Years Has Taught Me

    For the last four years, I have had the honor of serving the congregations of the Central East Region of the UUA, first as the District Executive of the Joseph Priestley District, and then as a Primary Contact and as a specialist in governance, staffing, ministry, and pastoral...
    By David Pyle | 7/9/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Summertime!

    July 1 marks the beginning of the summer season for the UUA. During July and August, the UUA has a shorter work day from 9a to 4p. Our regional staff also work shorter days during these two months....
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Maintaining the Beloved Community

    Summer is a glorious season. Traditionally it’s sold as a leisure time, a time to relax, enjoy yourself, get outdoors and have some fun.
    By Shannon Harper | 6/11/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Delegate at General Assembly? Look Here!

    Attending General Assembly can be an overwhelming experience even for those who have attended several times. Being a delegate and needing to understand what is happening in plenary is even more challenging....
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Annual Seaway Gathering

    The annual Seaway Gathering and Gould Lecture was held on April 13-14, 2018 at the First UU Society of Syracuse, NY....
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Relentlessly Useful Resources for Leadership Development

    What would Unitarian Universalism look like if we trained our lay leaders as highly as we train other religious professionals such as ministers and religious educators? We would no longer be able to joke that we’re too disorganized to be called “organized religion.”...
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 5/21/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Falling Forward

    You may remember that last spring the UUA was embroiled in a controversy over hiring practices for staff such as myself who serve our congregations.
    By Megan Foley | 5/14/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Resources for General Assembly 2018

    Attending General Assembly is a whirlwind of activity. Attending for your first time can be overwhelming! Your Central East Region team wants you to feel prepared. Here are some resources we think you might find helpful. Several are good for off site attendees as well as on site...
    By Beth Casebolt | 4/30/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Sharing Vision Statements

    After developing a vision statement, it can sometimes be difficult to communicate how it should impact the ministry of the congregation. The UU Fellowship of Greater Cumberland created this stunning Vision Visual to help guide that process. They plan to share it at…and post it...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • The Learning Lab of Life

    Innovation! Adaptation!! Experimentation!!! We live in a time of incredible change and shifting paradigms. Technology continues to zoom along at a pace that is breathtaking and society seems to be chomping at the bit for the next big thing. At the same time, some of the things...
    By Patricia Infante | 3/19/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Be a Learning Congregation!

    It’s no secret to UU’s that I work with that my call to ministry is lay leadership development. I take shared ministry seriously, and I want our lay leaders to be every bit as equipped to lead as our religious professionals....
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 2/19/2018
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Want to Grow? Time to Adapt!

    Is your congregation looking to be relevant in a culture where most mainstream white religions are in decline? Many UU congregations are growing, even areas that have declined economically. What is their “secret sauce?”...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • In Gratitude

    With Thanksgiving past and the holiday season approaching, this marks the beginning of the season of thankfulness and gratitude. And so we want to take this opportunity to say Thank You....
    By Central East Region of the UUA | 11/27/2017
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Board Basics Series Helps Boards Develop Skills

    This year, the Central East Regional Staff decided to offer a 3-part webinar on Board Basics. While normally an in-person, all day training, we realized that not all our congregations could take advantage of that. So the webinar idea was born. The purpose of the webinar is to be...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Helping Leaders Find Their Way

    About twenty years ago, I was sitting in my minister’s office, discerning whether I should put myself forward as a candidate for Moderator of the congregation.
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 8/21/2017
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Resources for Congregational Leaders

    It's almost time for a new church year and you have new congregational leaders. Where do they find resources and training they need?...
    By Beth Casebolt | 7/31/2017
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Serving with Mutuality

    My spouse and I are planning out a permaculture garden in the backyard of our new house. We don’t know much about permaculture yet, but we are learning. We are starting with the soil
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 7/10/2017
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Congregation Takes a Risk - and Succeeds

    During the Martin Luther King Day Weekend, the Unitarian Universalist Society of Mill Creek, in Newark Delaware, invited racial justice organizer and activist Chris Crass to present a Courage for Racial Justice / Courage for Liberation Conference and Training that brought...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Facing Religion in the Future

    “I heard people call it a "wake-up call" and say that they were "inspired and energized." -- Rev. Joe Cleveland, UU Congregation of Saratoga Springs, NY....
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Three Congregations Converge for Joint Board Retreat

    Two rivers flow along the Southern Tier of New York—the Chemung through Big Flats and the Susquehanna the Susquehanna through Binghamton--and converge just south of the border in Athens, Pennsylvania before flowing south to Towanda. Another convergence occurred when the UU...
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 9/19/2016
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Where Leaders Can Find Help

    Welcome to a new church year!...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Resources for Congregational Leaders

    It's almost time for a new church year and you have new congregational leaders. Where do they find resources and training they need?...
    By Beth Casebolt | 8/1/2016
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Did You Know? General Assembly is in our Region this year!

    General Assembly, the annual business meeting and gathering of the UUA will be held this year in Columbus, Ohio on June 22-26. This is a great opportunity for our members to experience General Assembly and benefit from the resources provided there close to home....
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Sandusky UUs Explore New Ways to be in Community

    The Rev. Mary Grigolia has worked with the UU Fellowship of the Firelands in Sandusky, OH for four years, leading services once a month, facilitating a workshop/discussion after service and coffee hour/lunch. But last March she encouraged them to take a different path, totally...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Innovative Ministries and Programs Highlighted in Dawning Future Conference

    Having a keynote speaker share an idea increases its influence and impact. Having a dozen speakers has a multiplying effect. Video-recording those speakers and sharing the presentations widely can have an exponential effect. That’s what happened at the Dawning Future Conference...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • In Care Program for UU Seminarians

    Unitarian Universalist seminarians in the southern Central East Region gathered August 20-22 in beautiful New Windsor, Maryland for our third In Care retreat. Together, they worshipped, got to know each other, asked burning questions, and examined real life ministerial case...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • We Are Not Alone!

    The board meeting was tense. There was a difficult issue under discussion, and no clear answer was presenting itself. Greg, a young adult and newer board member, mentioned that he had recently been on a web meeting as part of the Healthy Leadership 101 course he was taking, and...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Mourning Rev. Chris Neilson

    It is with great sadness we tell you that on July 9th the Rev. Chris Neilson lost her battle with leukemia. She was well known in both the OMD and the SLD....
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Goldmine Youth Leadership School

    It's that time of year again! Time to sign up for Goldmine. What's Goldmine? It's a week long life changing experience for teenage UU's. It's a chance to practice leadership skills, to explore one's values, to ponder on one's own calling. It's a chance to learn to lead worship...
    By Evin Carvill Ziemer | 6/8/2015
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Pittsburgh Cluster is “Better Together”

    As the choir joined voices from neighboring congregations into a rousing rendition of the Turtles’ song “Happy Together,” the cluster of UU churches in the Greater Pittsburgh area joined in their first annual “Cluster Assembly” and voted themselves into being on November 1, 2014.
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Strengthening the Web

    A few years ago, organizational consultant Margaret Wheatley asked a great question that I think we can use is assessing our own efforts to change the world: “Is what I’m about to do strengthening the web of connections, or it weakening it?”...
    By Joan Van Becelaere | 7/28/2014
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Innovation, Change and Me

    The Summer 2014 issue of UU World recently arrived in my mailbox. And although I get a lot of news and commentary online, there is real comfort in leafing through color glossy pages.
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Goldmine - Youth Leadership School

    In 1991 Jaco Ten Hove and others in the Pacific Northwest started a grand experiment, adapting the idea of a week long leadership school into a leadership school for youth. I first encountered Goldmine trained youth leaders as co-leaders of training I was leading in 2005, and...
    By Evin Carvill Ziemer | 4/14/2014
    Filed in: Better Together
  • View from the Penthouse

    In adaptive leadership training we often talk about the “view from the balcony,” and the view from the “dance floor.” The balcony view allows you to take a step back, observe the dance floor and the immediate things going on. It also allows you to take the long view, absorbing...
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Changing Spirit

    There seems to be a basic human reaction to change - all change – large or small, good or bad, desired or undesired. That reaction is grief.
    By Joan Van Becelaere | 12/30/2013
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Open Source or Best Practice?

    Should we be open to the wisdom of the crowds OR the wisdom of the ages? The answer of course is YES! There is a dynamic tension between roots and wings, navel gazing and star gazing.
    Filed in: Better Together
  • Changing Diapers

    There is an old joke – a very old joke – that says the only people who welcome change are babies with wet diapers. And yet we face changes every day. One might think we’d be used to it by now.
    By Joan Van Becelaere | 11/11/2013
    Filed in: Better Together


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