Message from the President – November 2019

Hello friends,

You might notice that members of the Board of Trustees are wearing badges that say “Ask me about the UUSA Board of Trustees.” Please do ask these good people about their service to the congregation through board gov- ernance.

As you might know, each Unitarian Universalist society is an entity wholly governed by itself. Our faith does not have a creed or overarching authority. We are free to choose our own path forward. However, The UUSA Board is well aware of our interdependence with the people of our congregation and community; and we are well aware of our responsibility to them. And so the Unitarian Universalist Society of Amherst (UUSA), has a (working and evolving) mission:

The Board is tasked with the fiduciary leadership of the UUSA; that is, the Board is in an ethical relationship of trust with the congregation to shape the vision and long-term goals of the UUSA. The Board ensures that the UUSA is externally effective, internally efficient, and fiscally sound. The Board creates policy that helps ensure the Congregation’s mission—and this policy is subject to the Congregation’s approval.

The Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations states: “Governance is spelled out in the fifth Principle, which calls for ‘the use of the democratic process within our congregations.’” No matter what the UUSA Board decides, ultimately it is up to the congregation to approve. Below you will find an outline of the topics we will be discussing in addition to our normal decision-making:

  • October: Explore and define Mission
  • November: Revisit Mission
  • December: Consider Stewardship as it meshes with Mission
  • January: Revisit Stewardship
  • February: Consider Outreach (publicity) as it meshes with Mission
  • March: Revisit Stewardship and Outreach as they mesh with our Mission
  • April: Consider Expansion and Mission
  • May: Revisit ideas for Expansion
  • June: Annual Meeting

Many of you are aware that our sanctuary is full nearly to overflow. Common wisdom says that if a sanctuary is full beyond 80%, newcomers feel uncomfortable about entering and settling in. Growing our congregation means expanding our message—of hope, responsibility, tolerance, faith exploration—to even more people seeking a reasonable, loving path. It also means looking at how we might expand our ways of meeting in order to expand our numbers. Look for the UUSA Trustee badges and ask questions. We will be glad to listen and share our thoughts. May we all embody our Unitarian Universalism together as we continue to expand the embrace of life-changing acceptance and love and most important HOPE.

Yours in faith, Karen

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