Opportunities for Connection ~ Nov 2016
Opportunities for Connection ~ November 2016
A CLL performs a wedding.

Featured Resource: Commissioned Lay Ministry Program

It had been a long awaited vacation: we were basking in the warmth of time with our grown children. Then my cell phone rang: a beloved 85-year-old member of the congregation had fallen; hip surgery was scheduled for the following day.  I was 250 miles away...and cringing.  I wanted to be there as the face of the congregation and for myself.

I called the newly commissioned Lay Minister. Calmly, he assured me he would go right away, then return to be a compassionate presence with the family during the surgery.  At each juncture, the CLM called to update me, and remained present with the family.

This is so typical of the benefits of Commissioned Lay Ministry in our congregation.  Even when I am not away, the CLMs provide a service which undergirds my own.  This partnership has made ministry deeper, more consistent and wider in focus than any I have experienced when operating solo.    (Rev. Dr. V. Elaine Strawn,  UU Fellowship of Wayne County, Wooster OH)

Strong lay leadership is a theological hallmark of our UU faith tradition since our movement began.  The Commissioned Lay Ministry (CLM) program of the Central East Region (CER) helps lay leaders take their ministry and service to a focused, deeper level, benefiting their congregations and our larger UU faith.

The program was created by Rev. Gordon McKeeman in 1976 and has been operating for over 41 years in Ohio-Meadville,  continuing our Universalist legacy of strong lay service and leadership that emerges from within congregations.  This program currently operates in the former Ohio-Meadville and St. Lawrence districts and is in process of moving into the rest of CER.  

In addition to the resource information about the CER Commissioned Lay Ministry Program at the CER website, please also see the UUA website’s “Lay Ministry” resource page.

Dan Hotchkiss

Defying Gravity Features Dan Hotchkiss as Keynote Speaker

The annual Leadership Conference, Defying Gravity, will take place on Saturday, Nov. 12 from 9:30 am to 5 pm at the UU Congregation of Shelter Rock, Manhassett, NY.

Dan Hotchkiss will be the keynote speaker speaking on Governance by Partnership. Barry Finklestein will offer a plenary talk on Expanding the Circle of Unitarian Universalist through 21st Century Stewardship.

Workshops in the afternoon include:


  • Governance and Ministry in Larger Congregations with Dan Hotchkiss
  • Exploring the Spectrum of Faithful Connections for the Small Congregation with Rev. Megan Foley
  • The Elephant in the Room with Rev. Hope Johnson
  • Best Practices in 21st Century Stewardship with Barry Finklestein
  • Developing Your next Generation of Leaders with Rev. Renee Ruchotzke
  • The Spiritual Practice of Self Care with Jeanne Nametz and Meagan Henry

Registration is now open. For for information and to register, visit the CER Website.

Please Update Your Address for Districts and for CER

As of July 1, all mail for the Central East Region and the four districts needs to be sent to the CER office in Delaware. Mail for specific staff members should be sent to that staff member's address. The CER Fax number is 866-445-8219. The address for mailing is:
     Central East Region of the UUA
     100 W.10th Street, Suite 1008
     Wilmington, DE  19801

Central East Region UUA Logo

Better Together Blog: New UU Video!

Have you seen the new UUA video: We Are Unitarian Universalists?

The graphic artist who created the video, Elliott Cennamo, is a UU and is from Columbus, OH. He created the Unitarian Univeralist Covenant: What Do We Promise One Another video 3 years ago.

The new video can be found on YouTube and on the front page of the UUA website.

Read the rest of the post.

UUA Chalice Gradient Version (Preview) (red shading to orange)

News from the UUA

Are you a religious educator? The R.E. Road Map has been updated! You can learn more at https://reroadmap.wordpress.com/

New publications from the UUA - Humanist Voices in Unitarian Universalism is now available for preorder. Visit the Publications Page for details.

The UUA is hiring for several positions. Find job descriptions and application information at their Job Openings webpage.

Calendar Items and News

For events, webinars and congregation news and events visit the following pages:

For more information contact cer@uua.org.

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