OUUC Weekly Update 11-29-17

News from the Olympia Unitarian Universalist Congregation

Worship Services - December 3, services at 9:15 and 11:00 am

"Active Waiting" – Rev. Eric Posa

Listen to recent sermons here.

Holiday Sharing Opportunities Abound!

OUUC’S Giving Tree and Hanukkah Menorah, casting welcome light in the Commons during this season, welcome your generous donations. Here are the programs receiving your contributions:

Thurston County Food Bank: Sharing is Caring! Sunday, December 10, bring your canned and packaged foods (be sure to check for expiration dates), especially those high in protein – tuna, peanut butter, beans. Last year, OUUC donated 750 pounds of food, thanks to the outstanding promotional work by Tom Best.
Dry Tykes and Wet Wipes: This Thurston County nonprofit’s mission is to help every child in need of diapers and to relieve parents’ stress when they are just a few days away from their next source of income. Diapers size 3 and above are especially welcomed. Learn more here.
Family Support Center: New children’s toys and books are needed for holiday distribution. Put unwrapped items in the box at the Giving Tree in the Commons.
Minister’s Benevolence Fund: Our minister gets calls and visits from people who request funds to meet emergency needs – to prevent utilities from being cut off, help with rent, buy shoes for their children. The minister administers this fund established to serve our members and the larger community. Please take your check, payable to OUUC, with Benevolence Fund in the subject line, to the church office.

The October 12 Board Minutes and November 9 Board Agenda are available here.

Search Process Linkage Meeting - On Sunday, December 10 at 12:30 pm (after the second service), the OUUC Board will host an informal linkage meeting to share the proposed process for selection of search team members and the search timeline. This will be an opportunity to learn about how we plan on launching our process to call a new settled minister in 2019 and provide feedback on this first phase of the process. Please mark your calendar and plan on joining us.

At its Special Meeting Tuesday night the board also approved a balanced budget for presentation to the congregation at the upcoming Congregational Meeting scheduled for Friday, December 15, 2017, at 7:00 pm preceded by our traditional sweet and savory potluck at 6:30 pm. (See Treasurer Wendy Tanner’s related article about the budget.)

Read more....

Budget Update

The board met Tuesday evening and approved an initial 2018 budget of $478,000. This is still $23,000 less than our 2017 budget but much better than we had feared. Since last week’s e-blast on the projected shortfall, pledges increased $7,381. Thank you to everyone who pledged and especially to those of you who increased your pledges or gave an additional gift. Thanks to your generosity, we did not end up needing to cut staff hours. However, we did have to make some significant cuts to the church’s operations budget. We are unable to add a salary for our Community Minister to lead our Faith in Action Ministry. We are unable to provide salary increases for our staff for the 2nd year in a row. We cut funds for maintenance, communications, and security. Longer-term budget implications: Some of the cuts are not sustainable.

Read more....

Christmas Worship Schedule

This year is unusual in that Christmas Eve, when we traditionally have two evening worship services here at OUUC, is also a Sunday - when we generally have two morning services. Hmm...so, four services in one day? I think we can all agree that's a bit much.

So our plan for Sunday morning, December 24 (and also the following Sunday morning, December 31 - New Year's Eve) is to have one morning service each of these Sundays, beginning at 10:00 am.

Additionally, we'll have two evening Xmas Eve services on December 24:

5:30 pm - Family-Friendly

9:00 pm - Traditional

Looking forward to seeing you there.

In faith, Eric

Welcoming Congregation Renewal - What Does it Mean?

When OUUC begins the process to renew our UUA Welcoming Congregation certification, we revisit guidelines and action steps our members created back in 1992 (yes, 25 years ago!), and use them to create new goals. Each renewal program is different; there is no blueprint. OUUC’s goals may include:
• Strengthening relationships with local or state groups and organizations that serve LGBTQ needs. Ask how you can help their work and brainstorm ways to bring their message to your congregation.
• Celebrating the progress you’ve made and identify areas where your congregation has room to grow. Congregations recognized more than a decade ago often benefit from refresher programming on transgender issues, bisexual and queer issues, race/ethnicity and sexuality, and other intersections of identity and experience. Be sure you are taking steps that will stretch your congregation to new levels of welcome.
• Creating diverse opportunities for engagement through education, congregational life, and community outreach.
Learn more about Welcoming Congregation Renewal, and how you can be involved here.

Social Groups

YUUNG (Age 21-31ish) - Church and Lunch (Every last Sunday). Come to church, sit with the young adults. Contact Ryan Baye.

PUGs (Powerful Unitarian Universalist Gals) - All women are welcome to join us for fellowship and conversation. Wednesdays 10:30 - Noon, PUGs at OUUC meets in the Youth Room. You may bring a beverage in your own container. - Contact Pat Sonnenstuhl.

Ladies Unitarian Social – All women affiliated with OUUC, and their guests, are welcome at Lady Unitarian Social Hour. We meet weekly on Tuesday afternoons from 4:30 to 6:00 pm to share conversation and refreshments. Please feel free to drop in at any of our weekly gatherings. December 5 - Falls Terrace, 106 Deschutes Way. - Contact Meliz Maatta or Susan Bakke.

Guy’s TGIT meets on Thursdays at 4:30 pm. November 30, Top Rung Brewing, 8344 Hogum Bay Lane NE. - Contact Bernie Brady.

MUGs (Mighty Unitarian Guys) meets for eclectic discussions every Thursday morning from 10:00 to 11:00 am at Traditions Cafe in downtown Olympia. Men of all ages are welcome. - Contact Jim Lengenfelder.

End-of-Year Giving

If you would like your contributions to OUUC to count as 2017 contributions for tax purposes, please make sure your cash or checks are delivered to OUUC or postmarked by December 31.

In the Larger Community

We're Hiring for Justice Work! - Work for Justice! Quarter time Program Manager Position Now Open. Northwest UU Justice Network (NWuuJN) and Washington UU Voices for Justice (Voices) seek an energetic, committed manager to lead the evolution of these two organizations into one new, more effective, more inclusive state action network for UUs engaged in justice work in Washington and beyond. This quarter-time program manager position is grant-funded as of January 2018. The position will remain open until filled. The evolution will be led by the to-be-chartered WASAN Evolution Leadership Team, under the general oversight of the combined boards of Voices and NWuuJN. The program manager will chair the Leadership Team and will oversee work on the project as well as the staff and volunteers who implement that work. The program manager is the primary spokesperson for the project. The project is administered by NWuuJN. The ideal candidate will have a bachelor’s degree (or equivalent), experience in justice work with UUs and other religious activists, involvement in anti-racism work, demonstrated success in project/program management, and skill in working with people of all ages in a loosely-structured environment. The candidate must be comfortable with UU principles and values. For more information, please email DD Hilke.

League of Women Voters of Thurston County & The Great Old Broads for Wilderness present: Why Wilderness? with George Wuerthner on January 23, 7:00- 9:00 pm, Olympia Community Center 222 Columbia St.