2019 Fall

October 1, 2019

Dear ­MidAmerica Chalice Lighter,

Chalice Lighter grants are funded by small donations from individuals like you—donations that are pooled together to help congregations from across our large MidAmerica Region of the UUA with specific growth projects. Beginning with this Chalice Lighter Call we’re making a slight change. Rather than awarding multiple smaller grants for each Fall, Winter, and Spring Chalice Lighter Call, we are awarding a single large grant of over $10,000 to one congregation for each Call.

Our goal is to reformulate the program so that congregations can receive more funds for starting new fellowships, acquiring meeting space, securing a minister, religious educator, or other professional staff, or providing for outreach and public relations. Smaller grants will still be available in the form of contributions of up to $1000 to Faithify campaigns posted by MidAmerica congregations (more on that later).

We are pleased to announce the first congregation to receive a grant using these new criteria:

Peoples Church UU Cedar Rapids IA musicians

Peoples Church in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is ready to take their Sunday morning music program to the next level by hiring a professional choir director and a professional weekly accompanist (or band leader) for the first time in at least 30 years or more. They feel that this would significantly improve worship, deepen the spiritual life of members, retain visitors, and attract new people. Our goal is to raise $15,000 to support them in this effort.

There are several ways you can participate in the Chalice Lighter program, with four suggested levels of donation:

  • $20 Believer
  • $50 Builder
  • $100 Benefactor
  • $250 Beacon

These are amounts that would be donated three times each year upon receipt of the Call Letter in Fall, Winter and Spring. If you’d prefer, for tax purposes, to make one donation per year (please send the $60 minimum donation or any greater amount to be divided among the next three Calls) you can send in your check now, and we will hold the funds and divide them equally across the three Calls. If you want to make an annual donation, please be sure to note “Annual” in the memo field of your check.

The Fall 2019 Call is closed, but you can donate to future and ongoin calls by either of these methods:

You can go to our Donation webpage: https://www.uua.org/midamerica/giving and click on the Donate option of your choice; or

Write a check out to MidAmerica Region. Please note “Annual Donation” in the memo line and send it to the MidAmerica Region, 2355 Fairview Avenue #312, Roseville, MN 55113.

Heritage Acres land in Ohio for Green Burial and Nature Sanctuary


As I mentioned earlier, individuals can help other congregations in the MidAmerica Region by supporting their Faithify Campaigns. With your help, the MidAmerica Chalice Lighter program has set aside money to help congregations reach their Faithify campaign goals. Every few months we’ll support a Faithify campaign from a MidAmerica Region congregation by donating 10% of the amount they receive from other donors—up to $1000.

This month we’re supporting Heritage Universalist Unitarian Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, in raising money to purchase and preserve 40 beautiful acres of farmland outside Cincinnati to create a nature sanctuary and green burial ground for our region. For more information on the campaign (and to offer additional support if you’d like), visit https://faithify.org/projects/growing-green-burial-the-uu-way/.

Thank you again for your generosity!


Phillip Lund, Congregational Life Consultant, and the Chalice Lighter Committee