February 2023 Notes from the Board

February 2023 Notes from the Board

What do you actually do at Board meetings?  That’s a question I’ve heard more than once, so I thought it might be helpful to write a short note each month to let you know what we are up to.  First, a reminder of who is on the Board this year:  myself (President), Jan Radoslovich (Vice-President and lead on the Ministry Council), Terry Santmann (Secretary), Kermit Sprang (Treasurer), Linda Sherry and Jeff Lu (Members at Large) and of course Rev Dan.  We meet 1-2x/month.

  This year started with an all day Board retreat where the focus was on setting some goals for the year.  We came up with three goals:  Healthier Congregational Communication and Interactions,  Building a Safer Congregational Culture and Matching the needs of the church with volunteer availability (or, Rightsizing the Church).  For the Healthier Congregational Communication/Interaction goal, Rev Dan has organized the Braver Angels workshop and the Monica Guzman discussion and the Board has restarted Community Conversations with more work to come.  For the Building a Safer Congregational Culture goal, we have created a “Safer Congregation” task force comprised of two Board members (myself and Jan Radoslovich), R&R member Lori McConnell and at large member Justin Gertler along with Liz Ligon and Marlene Katz.  Our goal on this task force is to create clear, well publicized policies and procedures along with education to prevent sexual abuse, sexual harassment and professional sexual misconduct at WUUC.  The other goal for this group is to create a comprehensive Safer Congregation policy that addresses sexual abuse, harassment, misconduct and disruptive behaviors.  So far, we have had our hand full with these goals and have not made progress on the third goal, but it is certainly not forgotten.

Please let any of us know if you have questions/concerns; we are here for all of you.

Thank you,

Leslie Morton

February 2023 ASJ Update

February 2023 ASJ Update

The Advocates for Social Justice will be sponsoring a Special Collection during the service on February 19th for the Communities of Color Coalition (C3). Based in Edmonds, C3 educates and advocates for social justice and human rights, especially for people of color and other under-represented groups that have been systemically oppressed. They do this through a transformational process that centers and supports those who are closest to the problem in developing and implementing the solutions necessary for systemic change. Our collection will go toward their comprehensive rental assistance program.

The December 18th Special Collection raised $503 for Arms Around You, a reentry resources and referrals program that serves formerly incarcerated individuals coming out of correctional facilities, the homeless community, and victims of domestic violence and substance abuse.

            The ASJ Committee thanks WUUC members and friends for their generous support of our monthly special collections, which take place during services on the third Sunday of every month. Instructions for giving are posted during the service, and you can also donate anytime the following week at https://onrealm.org/wuuc/-/give/now, or by sending a check to WUUC at P.O. Box 111, Woodinville, WA 98072. Please make checks out to WUUC and write “ASJ Special Collection” in the notes.

Join a Curiosity Cluster

Join a Curiosity Cluster

Join a Curiosity Cluster!

Curiosity Clusters are forming now. These are book study groups of 8-10 curious folks wanting to take a deeper dive into Mónica Guzmán’s book, I Never Thought of It That Way. Clusters will begin in mid-to-late February and run for six sessions. Virtual and in-person Clusters will be available.

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Please fill out this pre-registration form: https://forms.gle/wRtmJX39gSyYgSf3A

AND:

WUUC has plenty of copies of I Never Thought of It That Way! If you would like one (or more!), they are available for the discounted price of $19.00 each. Please contact May Killorin, our Office Administrator, at office@wuuc.org to obtain a copy.

Minister Musings Jan. 2023 – Cultivating Curiosity

Greetings WUUC community,

I am excited by the way that 2023 is starting off!

First, one of the biggest and most interesting events in our year-long exploration of Curiosity is happening on Sunday, January 29: a Fireside Chat with Mónica Guzmán, the author of I Never Thought of It That Way: How to Have Fearlessly Curious Conversations in Dangerously Divided Times. Mónica will join me in the afternoon for a public conversation about her book: what inspired it, what she learned through the writing process, and how people are responding since it was released early last year. Most importantly, we will talk about why and how we should cultivate curiosity in ourselves. There will be time for Q & A after the conversation, so bring your questions, your curiosity, and a friend with you to this awesome event with a truly inspiring person.

Then in February, the Curiosity express goes full steam ahead as we form Curiosity Clusters! What are Curiosity Clusters, you ask? These are book study groups of 8-10 curious people who want to take a deeper dive into Mónica’s book. They will begin in late February and run for seven sessions. I’ll be sharing more information, including how to sign up, soon.

I really hope curiosity catches on here in our community. It is not just a way to find things more interesting. I see it as a way to address one of the deepest problems our society is facing today: ideological division, which leads to dehumanizing, hate, and, in the most extreme cases, violence. This is a justice issue. Depolarizing the extreme ideological divides, connecting across differences, and seeing the humanity in people who think and act differently: these are ways to create a fairer and more just world. A safer and more peaceful world. A world with more respect, compassion, and love. Curiosity is not just a way to find things more interesting; it is a powerful tool in building a better world. I hope you will join me in cultivating curiosity in ourselves and others. After all, I believe curiosity is contagious!

I wonder what awaits us in the rest of 2023? And I wonder, too, what will choose to make of it? I’m looking forward to a curious start to the new year.

Dan

Continuing Zoom & Hybrid Events

Continuing Zoom & Hybrid Events

Dear WUUC,

The pandemic has been hard on all of us.  Engaging with our shared community is more important than ever.  To that end, we encourage all folks who plan, develop, or coordinate WUUC events to carefully consider including people who may not be able to participate in person by offering hybrid or online options whenever possible. Training and/or help with setting up virtual/hybrid events is available.  Please contact May Killorin, Office Manager, for assistance.

Your Board of Trustees