From the President – Karen Fisk – December 2018

Dear Friends,
The Board met November 11 to consider the proposed Ministerial Compensation Package our Ministerial Search Team will include with our Congregational Record as we seek a new, settled minister.

Our conversation about meeting the monetary goals of this package and the increased hours we would like to offer our staff was spirited and heartfelt and overwhelmingly filled with hope.

To begin this meeting, we checked in by answering why we give money to the UUSA. The answers were variations on a theme.

  • “Because Unitarian Universalism is a transformative faith and I want this congregation to always be here ready to welcome those who walk through our doors.”
  • “Because it is the right thing to do.”
  • “Because I believe in the power of the next generation of youth brought up as UUs.”
  • “Because the messages we hear in this Society are an important antidote to what we are hearing in the larger world.”
  • “Because within this community, I feel at home.”

The Board has time and time again come to the congregation in need of greater monetary commitment in order to realize tremendous visions — a brand-new, expanded and refurbished meetinghouse; a larger compensation for a new minister to enable us to continue to share our faith of hope and light and love and faith-in-action with more and more people. And time and time again you have all stepped up and said: “I will help!”

The Board approved $63,000 (salary and housing) with a total compensation package of $87,000 (including salary, housing, development, dental, etc.), which is slightly larger than last year’s and in compliance with the UUA’s recommendation for a church our size in our region. We approved this package with the knowledge that we are ready to work hard to realize the vision of a deep, powerful, outward reaching and inward nourishing ministry that will continue to amplify the message of Unitarian Universalism: Learn, Love, Work, Give, Hope.

Yours in faith, Karen
Please note the topics of upcoming Board Meetings:

  •  December: Committee Term Limits, Succession Planning, and Goals
  •  January: Canvass: Canvass Task Force
  •  February: Canvass: Dedicated Offerings and Fundraising/Candidating Week Planning
  •  March: Candidating Week Planning: scheduled for April 27-May 5.
  •  April: Our Children and Youth: The future of our congregations.
  •  May: Annual Meeting and Board Handbook, Bylaw Changes (New board members)
  •  June: Annual Meeting

Please note:

  • Board Notes from our clerk Lynne Latham will appear regularly in our e-newsletters to keep you aware of Board meeting work. Congregants can also read full minutes posted in the office.
  • Board members are always available to chat. Please don’t hesitate to ask questions and to simply check in and thank a Board member for the work they are doing. Board members are: myself, Lynne Latham, Peter Lacey, Bo Mack, Fran Plumer, Emily Shankle, Rob Fuderich, Casey Flueckiger, Jeanne Ballantine, Rosie Cowell, Susan Rice, and Joe Flueckiger, our leadership consultant.

MEMBERSHIP
Welcome to Brooke Burrows, who signed our Membership Book on November 11, and to Linda Robinson, Rachel Gibson and Craig Gibson, who joined our UU Society on November 18!

STAFF NEWS
We welcome Phil Gilfeather-Girton as our bookkeeper. Phil is a consulting bookkeeper with decades of experience. He applied to the job for our congregation specifically because we are a Unitarian Universalist community doing good work. The search committee – Elliot Kelly, Peter Lacey, and Karen Fisk – was very impressed with Phil’s skills, his ability to explain finances, and his willingness to help us all better understand the Society’s financial systems.

Report on the UUA’s Interim Training
by Rebecca Fricke

The online Professional Interim Training (PIT) offered by the UUA was a valuable experience for Rev. Steve Cook, DRE Rebecca Fricke and Office Administrator Lea Douville for several reasons, including providing:

  • an increased awareness of the Interim process
  • an overview of the challenges involved for everyone in the organization during an interim session
  • a shared vocabulary
  • and an opportunity to work together on a hypothetical plan.

During the eight-week session the UUSA team met and held discussions based on the classwork (blog postings, readings and videos). The final project required Rev. Steve, Lea and Rebecca to think about a hypothetical situation from their three perspectives. The hypothetical plan which they came up with presented the hypothetical board of trustees of the made-up church a way of moving forward which included re-evaluating the church’s mission statement. Although not exactly applicable to the UUSA’s situation, they are in fact putting elements of their plan in place.

“Having worked through the past two years of Interim, it was interesting to learn the vocabulary and the theory behind the process of organizational change. I think the UUSA has held remarkably steady through what could have been an incredibly rocky time. I think that in this third year of Interim we should push ourselves to really open up and embrace the uncertainty that is part of experimenting with new ways of operating and new ways of interacting. I am confident that Rev. Steve, Lea and I can help the congregation through the next Interim steps.”
– Rebecca Fricke

“The PIT Training created a venue for me to learn from other’s experiences – especially my new colleagues – in navigating the complexities and opportunities of the Interim period here at the UUSA. I leave the course with increased sensitivity to the concerns of the congregation and admiration for the deep level of commitment I witness here on a daily basis through my interaction with members and friends of the UUSA.”
– Lea Douville

“While for me, the PIT materials were somewhat of a refresher, that in no way diminishes their relevance or importance. It is always worthwhile to revisit familiar materials and apprehend them in new ways based on new situations and with new colleagues, as for me here at UUSA. I think we established that the interim period is not something that just ‘happens’ to a church, but rather an important inflection point during which staff can help lead the congregation in ways most needed based on the staff’s analysis of the church’s history, assets and challenges.”
– Rev. Stephen Cook

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