What’s Happening in…WORSHIP
Sunday worship is designed around monthly themes. Past themes have been drawn from our UUCE Aspirations, created by the Dreamcatchers church-wide process, our UUA Principles and Sources, from the Children’s Recessional, and from the UUCE Mission.
- Sundays enjoy the support of the Worship Associates who also offer a monthly Reflection.
- The Greeters and Ushers make it all go smoothly
- The Sunday Kitchen Crew!
- Summer services continue as usual, organized by our Minister or Ministerial Intern and including special guest musicians.
The amazing Music Program is directed by Brad Schultz. Susanne Giordano is our devoted and talented pianist. We have two choirs, and always welcome new singers. Several times a year, there are even opportunities to sing in a one-rehearsal performance!
- Each year, there is a Winter Concert, and a Music Sunday in the Spring, which presents a major work. Examples include the Beatitude Mass for the Homeless, and the Missa Pro Servetus.
- The program hires a lead vocalist and assembles talented musicians from the community.
- Guest musicians also come from the congregation, including youth.
The Contemplative Practice program
- Meditation at 7:00pm every Monday in the Chapel.
Passages of life celebrate the turning of the wheel of time, honoring the days of our lives with
- Celebration of Life services, the way we name our memorials for those who have died.
- Baby Dedications welcome new lives in our midst.
- We hold ceremonies which welcome new members and affirm our Pastoral Care Associates and RE teachers.
- We worship together as an intergenerational Religious Education Program at the beginning of every trimester.
- Marriage equality gives us the joy of officiating legally recognized ceremonies for all people.
What’s Happening in…CONNECT!
There are 165 kids and youth registered this church year. Director of Religious Education Katy Seipert tends our lifespan faith development, with her assistant Ezra, and the SpiritJam Teaching Team which includes Payton and Sean, as well as a host of RE volunteers and event helpers. Energetic, goodwilled and generous volunteers in the classrooms make this program dance!
The Religious Education Program for children offers
- Sunday morning classes
- Infant and toddler care
- Coming of Age
- Our Whole Lives
- Youth events and conferences
- Easter Eggstravaganza
- ALL church events offer childcare, to encourage participation. (Do let Katy know ahead!)
Adult Religious Education offers three trimesters of classes. This year they have included
- Arts as Spiritual Practice
- Leadership Development
- The 10 Commandments
- Racial Justice Series and the Love in Action Team
- End of Life Planning
- Adult Our Whole Lives (OWL) – sexuality education
Support, Learning and Social Group
- Small Group Ministries, including Winter and Spring special offerings like Transitions, Recovery, and Death and Dying
- Sister Circles
- Men’s groups
- Morning Doves Birding Group
- Poetry groups and publication
The Pastoral Care Program has two wings:
- Pastoral Care Associates provide companioning and spiritual care. They meet monthly.
- The Kindness folks offer support in the form of cards each week and rides to medical appointments; also providing hospitality at receptions for memorial and other services.
- There is a Pastoral Care training program in April, open to all; it will be held once a year.
And, of course, the first Tuesday of every month at 5:30pm there is Touchstone Tuesday Potluck – bring a dish or a kid! This program has been facilitated by Earth Equity Food Project, Lizzy Utterback and Owen Ott, who took it on after Susan Verner and Rev. Sydney.
What’s Happening in…OUTREACH
UUCE is known in the community for its involvement in service and justice projects. Here where intersections meet, the vision is upheld: that arc of the universe, though long, bends toward justice. Alphabetically speaking,
- The Conestoga Hut Project a mission to “provide a safe, secure and stable environment for Contestoga Hut residents.” We currently have three residents in the three huts and provide electricity, porta-potties, the tent space and now free laundry facilities in the Riser Room. People are referred through a city-wide St. Vincent DePaul program which vets people and provides them with other services. There are other accomodations for the unhoused at Opportunity Village (tiny houses), safe space city-designated lots, administered by other programs. People in the latter program who live across 13th Street use our water and electricity. Currently, we have had to make sure that there are no other overnighters, since our tolerance for folks who adhere to one of our Residents’ guidance to “Be nice/Be Kind/Leave nothing behind” has been disrespected. UUCE is responsible to provide safe, secure and stable environment not only for Residents, but also the schoolkids next door who should not be harassed or exposed to drugs, alcohol, etc.
- Service in Action provides an umbrella group for:
~Interweave, a UU GLBTQ support and social group
And cooperative work with:
~ UU Voices for Justice, the Oregon-wide coordinated justice project
~That’s My Farmer in Eugene
~CROP Walk against hunger
~Health Care for All
- Whole Church Justice Projects
The desire for whole-church justice endeavors was expressed in the Dreamcatchers process of church-wide conversation. These projects explicitly link environmental and human justice.
~Earth EqUUity Food Project invites you to events throughout the spring. It is present every Sunday in the South Entry, and is enjoying the dozens of members and young people who are filling out the Passports to keep track of their participation. Anticipate a celebration in May!
~The Refugee Sanctuary Project, works with refugees, immigration and migrants.
What’s Happening in…ADMINISTRY
Faithful and steady volunteer groups keep communication flowing: the eBulletin/Edit/Calendar Team gathers, orders and disseminates the facts of our church activities every week, as does the Newsletter Team on a monthly basis.
The Board of Trustees is living into its three main tasks: setting policy, linking in dialogue with the congregation and monitoring staff.
The Board is excited to be speaking with all the different groups in the congregation during Quarterly Conversations.
An Operations Team of the Minister, Business Manager and Treasurer meet weekly to attempt to keep things flowing smoothly. The Program Staff meets to coordinate weekly – that’s the Directors of Music and RE, the Minister and Ministerial Intern, and the Business Manager.
The folks charged by the congregation to nominate members of the Board and of their own Committee for election at the Annual Meeting are exploring their role as Nominating and Leadership Development.
Board-appointed groups are Membership, Financial Oversight & Review (FOR), Endowment, and Long Range Planning.
Membership welcomes people into a journey to belonging, and is moving into also tending to folks after they have joined to help them feel welcome and find their involvements.
- The Welcome Table
- Weekly Faith Forward – Inquirers, Beyond Inquirers, Spiritual Practices, UU History, and UU Theology in rotation after service. Drop in any time!
- Monthly opportunity to sign the membership book before service.
What’s Happening with… STEWARDSHIP
Stewardship describes the care-filled tending of both financial and physical resources.
The physical aspect of stewardship enjoys:
- The Buildings and Grounds group meeting every Tuesday morning for maintenance and finishing projects on the building.
- The weekly Gardening crew makes the grounds beautiful most Tuesday mornings, rain or shine.
- The Community Art Wall changes monthly, and has brought many people into the building – it could be considered outreach, or connecting – making the point that all our work interweaves. It is part of Aesthetics, addressing the interior of the building.
The financial aspect of stewardship enjoys:
- Annual book sale.
- Annual Auction.
- Annual Pledge Drive.
- Ongoing Capital Campaign
What’s Happening with… MINISTERS
It is thought that the presence of a minister adds value to congregational life, and that ministry to the Unitarian Universalist Church in Eugene can be rewarding and joyous.
There have been three periods of time of longer term relationships between UUCE and its ministers:
- The Universalist Church for 12 years – until 1896 (a co-ministry husband and wife team)
- The Unitarian Church in the 1930’s through the Depression
- The UU Church from 1962 to 2006
We participate in the Developmental Ministry Program. Rev. Dr. Sydney Morris has been with us for five years, and a new Developmental Minister will be coming in September of 2018 for 5-7 years.