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Extended Leadership Experience – Virtual MWLS 2020

Extended Leadership Experience Virtual MidWest Leadership School

Leadership is always important, but these days, there are extra elements that make being a leader even more challenging. We live in anxious times: with the novel coronavirus changing the way we do things, we need to be more open to flexibility, and live in the midst of ambiguity. We live in a world that is more clearly taking on the challenge of dismantling the systems of oppression that have held all of us captive, but more particularly people from marginalized communities: Black, Indigenous, Persons of Color, Trans, Non-Binary Gender Queer folks, People with disabilities.

We will be focusing on what it takes and means to be a leader as we also recognize the two challenges of physical distancing and dismantling systemic white supremacy culture. We will meet four Saturdays, 10am-1pm Eastern, 9am-12noon Central. There will be homework before each session. There will also be a lecture each week from Rev. Connie Simon, on the history and theology of UUism—in other words, how we got to where we are. We will be offering the opportunity for a Credo small group to consider questions together.

The Saturday Sessions will focus on the following themes:

  • Session 1, September 12: Identity: Creating the Beloved Community, focusing on questions such as who is “us,” what covenants bind us together, widening our circle of inclusion
  • Session 2, October 3: Mission Vision: Why Do We Bother, exploring the reasons your congregation exists, what your purpose in the world is
  • Session 3, October 24: Systems: How Does It All Fit Together, focusing on congregational DNA, how things work, how to lead from a systemic position
  • Session 4, November 14: Conflict: Being Together Across Differences, exploring how congregations resolve issues, and how to be together while disagreeing

We encourage teams from congregations to sign up together: we will be having lots of conversation, sometimes with your team, and other times in cross-congregation groups. We have found that having a team attend helps you implement the material in your congregations. Every person attending must provide a letter of recommendation from either their minister or president or vice president of their governing body.

Cost: $150 per person, payable at the time of registration. People who are Black, Indigenous, Persons of Color, Trans, Non-Binary, or a Young Adult will be eligible for a 50% reduction of the registration fee. This reduction can be claimed at the time of registration.

If you have questions, please direct them to Lisa Presley (lpresley@uua.org).

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