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Opportunities for Connection ~ July 2019

Shaking Hands

Featured Resource: New Documents from the Office of Church Staff Finance

The UUA Office of Church Staff Finances states its own mission as follows: Guided by the values of our faith, we equip congregations for excellence as employers and their staff for financial competence and well-being. Information, services, and programs are provided to congregational leaders and staff regarding benefit plans, compensation, aid funds, and staffing practices.

There are several new documents and resources available from this office that congregations should be aware of:

  • Need to write or revise your Personnel Handbook? After many rounds of editing and review, the Office of Church Staff Finances is pleased to present an updated Sample Personnel Policy Manual.
  • Trying to figure out what is appropriate compensation? See the Compensation Guidelines section of their Compensation Program page for a Compensation Worksheet; they even included a video (and slides from the video) with tips and reminders about each benefit line item.
  • Hiring a minister? There are updated recommended ministerial agreement documents for Full-Time/Solo and Lead Ministries and Interim Ministers. Check out the Ministerial Transitions page for a number of new (or freshly edited) documents.
  • Sign up for their newsletter to keep up with what new resources and law changes that affect your ability to be a good employer.
2019 GA Spokane, WA

Resources from General Assembly

What a great General Assembly we had. All of the events that took place in the main hall such as the Opening Ceremonies, the business meetings, the Ware Lecture, the Synergy Bridging Ceremony, the Sunday Morning Service and the Closing Ceremonies were recorded and are now available on the UUA website. Additional resources, such as the amended texts of the Actions of Immediate Witness and the accepted Congregational Study Action Issue will be published to the UUA website in the coming weeks.

This year at GA there were two conversation sessions held. The first titled Redeeming the Promise of Our Faith, was centered on the work of the Commission on Institutional Change. The second titled The Heart of Our Faith which looked at what it means to embody “The Power of We?” There were three questions asked of the participants for each of these sessions and the questions were sent home for congregations to discuss and provide feedback. Check the UUA website for the video of the presentations and the questions. Feedback opportunities will be coming soon.

Central East Region UUA Logo

Reminder - It's Time to Update Your Leadership Information!

It's that time of the year again. Your congregation has held its annual meeting, or its on your schedule and elected new officers. You have new committee chairs appointed to lead your work for next year. But have you told anyone about these changes.

To help us and the UUA stay in touch with the leaders of your congregation we need YOU to update your leadership information on myuua.org. This is the same place you update your UU World lists. Need help? Let us know or check out the webpage with the details.

Your primary contact will also be in touch during the month of July to make sure this information is up to date in our database. We want to make sure we are contacting the right people.

Starfish on beach with a foamy wave next to it

Summer Programming Still Has Openings!

Thinking about attending RE Week, Our Whole Lives Training or River Rising this summer and not sure if you can still register at this late date? You are in luck!

Do register now if you wish to attend to ensure you have a spot and avoid additional late fees.

Beth Casebolt

Better Together Blog: What Is Your SuperPower?

by Beth Casebolt

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, veggies and animals out of yarn. But it is also a representation of our recognition that each of us brings unique skills and perspectives to the table and that we each have areas where we aren’t as strong as some of our colleagues. We have learned that we are Better Together.

Read the rest of the articl

Tapestry of Faith, Signs of Our Faith, Session 12

News from the UUA

The Youth and Young Adult Office announce new UUA Youth Safety Guidelines have been released. These guidelines were developed after a year of study, writing and review. You can read and download them at the UUA website.

In more Youth News, please save the date for this year's online Youth Ministry Advisor Trainings. For dates of the webinars, check the Blue Boat Blog. Additional details coming soon!

New publications from the UUA New from Skinner House books is The Spirit That Moves: Readings and Rituals for Times of Change and Transition by Rev. Barbara Child on change in congregations, Spilling the Light: Meditations on Hope and Resilience, Goodness Gracious: A Gratitude Book for Children, Mistakes and Miracles: Congregations on the Road to Multiculturalism and Sparks of Wonder: Theme-Based Ministry for the Whole Congregation. The July Goodreads Book Club pick is How Does It Feel to Be Unwanted? Stories of Resistance and Resilience from Mexicans Living in the United States by Eileen Truax (Beacon Press). Check the Publications Page additional reviews and book details. Also look for Skinner House at General Assembly!

The UUA is hiring for several positions including Regional Lead for the Pacific West and MidAmerica regions, regional field staff for the Pacific West and New England Regions, and Congregational Life Staff and Communications Director for the New England Region. 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:

Upcoming Events

  • Gathering for Presidents

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    From New England Region
    https://www.eventbrite.com/e/gatherings-for-congregational-presidents-t… here! You asked for regular meetings for congregational presidents, and here...
  • Zoom Skill Up

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    From New England Region
    https://www.eventbrite.com/e/zoom-skill-up-for-congregational-volunteer… here! Do you need a deeper bench of Zoom volunteers in your congregation? Need...
  • Ready and Resilient

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    From Central East Regional Group
    Join with several CER Field Staff and staff from the UUA Organizing Strategy Team to talk about Election Preparedness
  • Ordination of Dan Miyake in Clarklake, MI

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    From MidAmerica Events
    Dan Miyake will be ordained by the UU Church of East Liberty in a virtual event Nov 1
  • Thickstun Installation

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    From Central East Regional Group
    Rev. Jane Thickstun will be installed as minister of UU Church of the North Hills in Pittsburgh on Sunday, November 1st, at 4pm.

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Learn about the CER Primary Contact Program

By Central East Region of the UUA

From Central East Regional Group

The Central East Regional (CER) has a primary contact staff system to ensure our congregations know who to reach out to for assistance. Every CER congregation and community has a UUA Staff Member who serves as your Primary Contact for all services of the region and the UUA.

Primary Contact Program

General Assembly 2019 Online

From General Assembly Presentations

General Assembly (GA) is the annual meeting of our Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA). Attendees worship, witness, learn, connect, and make policy for the Association through democratic process. General Assembly 2019 (June 19-23) took place in Spokane, Washington. Video and Transcripts from...

Spokane 2019

The Spirit That Moves Readings and Rituals for Times of Change and Transition

By Barbara Child

From Skinner House Books

In The Spirit That Moves, editor Barbara Child has collected a wealth of worship materials to help you and your congregation turn transition into transformation.

Buy Now

Spilling the Light Meditations on Hope and Resilience

By Theresa I. Soto

At once deeply compassionate and spiritually empowering, this volume of the inSpirit Series by Rev. Theresa I. Soto tends to our souls and emboldens us to become our truest selves.

Buy Now

Mistakes and Miracles Congregations on the Road to Multiculturalism

By Nancy Palmer Jones, Karin Lin

From Skinner House Books

Shares how five diverse congregations encounter frustrations and disappointments, as well as hope and wonder, once they commit to the journey to create multicultural, antiracist Beloved Community.

Buy Now

Sparks of Wonder Theme-Based Ministry for the Whole Congregation

By Becky Brooks, Erika A. Hewitt

Buy Now

How Does It Feel to Be Unwanted? Stories of Resistance and Resilience from Mexicans Living in the United States

By Eileen Truax

From Beacon Press

In an era of increasing anti-immigrant sentiment and bigotry, each of these thirteen stories illuminates the issues affecting the Mexican community and shows the breadth of a frequently stereotyped population.

Buy Now