Engaging Change & Providing Feedback

This month we have been exploring the Soul Matters theme of CHANGE. We offer three different types of Soul Matters small groups. They provide opportunities for exploring the monthly topic through conversation, creating visual art or writing. Prompts and inspirational materials are provided each month. The groups are led by trained facilitators and are still accepting new members. Please contact Venny Zachritz <connect@uuasheville.org> our Soul Matters Groups co-coordinator if you are interested in joining a group.

Change in Our Programming
Vespers, preceded by dinner and followed by a program or programs has been a part Adult Faith Development since I arrived almost 5 years ago. At that time attendance was dwindling. The planning team and I, experimented with different ideas to re-engage the congregation.  We surveyed participants, asked for recommendations for programs and started planning to make them happen. Then, COVID hit and we went on-line with 8-24 people attending. Now that we have been in person, attendance has been minimal except for 1stWednesdays when we share a meal and fellowship followed by the Vespers service. That will be the only Vespers service offered each month. We are grateful for all who have led Vespers, led programs and participated on Wednesdays. During COVID that midweek collection of your beautiful faces on the Zoom gallery was salvific!

However, that doesn’t mean there won’t be opportunities for Adult Faith Exploration. A short survey to gather your thoughts on what kind of Adult Faith Exploration programing you would like to see in the future is below. It includes a few examples but I what our team really wants to know is what YOU are interested in exploring. Please take a moment and respond to the survey.

Change in our Denomination
Change is coming to our denominational documents. The section that houses our UU Principles and Sources is being revised. Check out this document which explains the process and has a link to the proposed changes. As you read, I invite you to reflect on these questions: How does it make you feel? What do think about the recommended changes? What feedback do you have? There are opportunities to share your feedback via a Zoom gathering or a Google form. I will be hosting a bagged lunch discussion to discuss the proposal Nov. 27 at 12:30 PM, in  the Sanctuary and at 7 PM via Zoom. Zoom link will be in the e-news. Please consider attending.

Rev. Claudia Jimenez, Minister of Faith Development

 

 

Justice Ministry Update: 8th Principle Conversations at UU Asheville

Racial Justice Advisory Council (RJAC) Report: What’s that?
We strive to become a radically inclusive and welcoming congregation as we are called to do if UUism is to be the liberatory faith it can be. This work started with an internal assessment led by a small team of congregants and our Minister of Faith Development, Rev. Claudia Jiménez. Their learnings and recommendations known as the RJAC Report were shared with the congregation and the board. One of the top recommendations was to engage the congregation in learning about the proposed 8th Principal which aligns with the work of liberation. An 8th Principle Team is actively  hosting Learning Circles, tabling on Sundays and exploring other ways to prepare the congregation to vote in the June congregational meeting to adopt the 8th Principle. They are creating space for all to discuss hope, fears and dreams as we consider this important vote.

The Proposed 8th Principle:

“We, the member congregations of the Unitarian Universalist Association, covenant to affirm and promote: journeying toward spiritual wholeness by working to build a diverse multicultural Beloved Community by our actions that accountably dismantle racism and other oppressions in ourselves and our institutions.”

WHAT IS BELOVED COMMUNITY?

Beloved Community happens when people of diverse racial, ethnic, educational, class, gender, abilities, sexual orientation backgrounds/identities come together in an interdependent relationship of love, mutual respect, and care that seeks to realize justice within the community and in the broader world.