Claiming Our Spiritual Leadership (Training) Our World Needs It

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People of faith who long for a transformed world are called to claim their Spiritual Leadership. Our souls need it. Our congregations need it. Our world needs it. The NER staff team holds the audacious opinion that the purpose of congregations is to inspire and support everyone to affirm and practice their Spiritual Leadership.

Spiritual Leadership is not reserved for religious professionals or lay leaders. It is an orientation and practice by which each one of us creates, sustains, and restores Beloved Community — community in which each person experiences belonging, equity, and well-being regardless of identity, role or rank. Spiritual Leadership is needed everywhere: our homes, schools, places of work, neighborhoods, communities. As covenanted communities, congregations are perhaps especially suited to nourish and support it.

Especially clear in this time of pandemic, climate chaos, increasing polarization and uprising is how little we have power or control over. Through Spiritual Leadership, we exercise the power we do have to create a more just and beautiful world even as we release our compulsion to try to control what is not in our hands. It is on us, therefore, to pay attention to where we have power — inner power, interpersonal power, institutional power, social power, spiritual power — and where we are powerless.

Spiritual Leadership is a call. It looks different for each person because each of us is unique. We have unique gifts, unique purpose, unique experience, unique understanding. Yet each of us has the possibility within us to act intentionally and faithfully in ways that create and restore loving and just relationships and systems. It is life work. And we are all invited.

Claiming Our Spiritual Leadership is newly accessible as an online training to people around the country. After delivering it in person to hundreds of people from scores of UU congregations in New England, we are grateful to be able to offer it to congregational teams in this new way. Check out the syllabus (PDF) for a peek at course content and visit the UU Leadership Institute for more information on registration and training. (Note: You will redirected to a separate website,, which is managed by the UUA.)

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