Our Spirit of Generosity and RA Updates
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"Our Spirit of Generosity" , PWR & UUA News, and more!
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Pacific Western Region
Newsletter December 2021
Our Spirit of Generosity
by Rev. Sarah Movius Schurr
PWR Program Staff

Sometime around the Thanksgiving holiday, the mailings start to come.  Every good and helpful organization I have ever donated to, or might ever want to donate to, sends me their special holiday appeal letter. They are anxious to ride the spirit of generosity and giving that hangs in the air during the winter holidays, like the smell of baked goods and the ever-present Christmas music playing in all the department stores.

But this letter is not about asking you to give. Not this one. This one is sharing how we in the Pacific Western Region have been giving! You might remember that several months ago we let you know about grants we were offering to congregations to help them live into a better future of growth and inclusivity. This grant money was collected at regional events in past years and was sitting in the bank, waiting for the right moment. Like some mythic being from an ancient holiday tale, we are living the spirit of generosity and giving money to congregations with good ideas on how to spread the spirit of generosity even further.

Here are just a couple of examples of generosity in action. The Bellingham UU Fellowship in Northern Washington is bringing in specialized facilitators from the community to train people in the difference between Whiteness and White Allyship, identifying polarization frameworks, and increasing a sense of unity and belonging. Our grant will join with other funding they have secured to sponsor this great program. And they are working collaboratively in this training with our smaller congregations in Blaine and in Skagit Valley, sharing this great resource.

Our church in Honolulu, Hawaii will use grant money to improve their ground-floor building access through upgrades in their community garden. This not only gives them the chance to appreciate the natural beauty of the earth even more fully, but to have Covid-safer outdoor meeting space, and to live our values of inclusivity by making an accessible ground-floor space for children and families. They will share these improvements with others who use the building, including the local synagogue.

As time goes on, we will ask our grant recipients to share their stories with you in this newsletter – how this money helped them live our UU values in the world and share the spirit of generosity throughout the year. And just a reminder that our Pacific Western Regional Assembly will be held from February 4th – 6th, 2022. Our theme is Reflect, Rejoice, Renew! We look forward to learning and celebrating with you either in person in sunny San Diego, or comfortably online. We can share more stories of generosity: generosity offered, and generosity received.
In this Issue
Our Spirit of Generosity
PWR & UUA News

Youth & Emerging Adult News
Pacific Central News
Pacific Northwest News
InSpirit Update

PWR Links
Calendar and Events
Staff Contacts
Job Postings
Youth Ministries

RE Trainings

PWR Lead
Carlton Elliott Smith

PWR Program Staff
Summer Albayati
Pacific Western Regional Assembly: Register Now!
We need Unitarian Universalist community more than ever, and the Pacific Western Region of the UUA is having a Regional Assembly to bring us together February 4-6, 2022 in San Diego and online.

Our PWR Regional Assembly is that inspirational, radically inclusive, beyond-the-congregation UU community we’ve missed. We can engage fully, wherever we are. Whether onsite at the Hyatt along the bay in San Diego, or online in the comfort of our own homes, we will have opportunities for connection in small groups, inspirational worship, transformative learning, and just plain community fun.

Visit our webpage to learn more and register. We are so excited to see you there—we can’t wait to be together again.

Regional Assembly: Call for "Shorts"
Regional Assembly calls for Shorts. Selected short videos will be made available to all who participate in Regional Assembly 2022. Some may be used in RA programming, some will be available for viewing leading into the weekend and some will be available for participants to use in a future worship service. Examples include:

  • Natural beauty near your home, or a short nature trail
  • A great congregational program to share with others  
  • A song or Story for All Ages that you have the rights to play & share
  • Maybe you want to update us on a bit of cluster news  
  • A chalice lighting - reading & lighting

Here is a great format for just that kind of communication. We are not seeking commercial submissions. Professional film crews are not needed. Cell phone or Zoom videos are often very good. Regional Assembly is our joint gathering, won’t you contribute? Details and submissions.

Compass: Navigating the Paths to Liberation Together
When asked, "What wisdom might we offer to one another in this challenging moment?" Let us boldly respond, “Interdependence will guide us onward.” And it is truly in one another that we find our compass in navigating the paths towards liberation.

All are welcome to gather in community for Compass: Navigating the Paths to Liberation Together on December 11-12, 2021, as we discern our way forward. The virtual event series will include invigorating worship, special musical guests, thought-provoking conversations, breakout caucus gatherings, a special presentation from the Article II Study Commission, and much more.

Registration is now open. Learn more about Compass here.
UUA Board Meetings and Open Houses
Open Houses
The Board will, once again, hold open houses on the 2nd Tuesday of each month.
  • Tuesday, December 14, 2021; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, January 11, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, February 8, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, March 8, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, April 12, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, May 10, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, June 14, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.

Board Meetings
The Board meets monthly. Here are the dates/times for each meeting. Please note that a registration link for the meetings will be available on this page in advance of each meeting.
  • Monday, December 13, 2021; 4:00pm PT / 5:00pm MT / 6:00pm CT / 7:00pm ET
  • Friday, January 21—Saturday, January 22, 2022; Schedule TBD
  • Monday, February 14, 2022; 4:00pm PT / 5:00pm MT / 6:00pm CT / 7:00pm ET
  • Monday, March 14, 2022; 4:00pm PT / 5:00pm MT / 6:00pm CT / 7:00pm ET
  • Friday, April 22—Saturday, April 23, 2022; Schedule TBD
  • Monday, May 9, 2022; 4:00pm PT / 5:00pm MT / 6:00pm CT / 7:00pm ET
Stewardship Lunch and Share
Stewardship Lunch and Share for stewardship and fundraising lay leaders.
Join PWR staff and congregational leaders from around the region for conversation and sharing about stewardship, generosity, and fundraising. Each gathering will include brief presentations and plenty of time to bring your questions and ideas to one another.
12:00pm to 1:00pm Pacific on the 2nd Friday of the month.

December 10th Topic: The Impact of the Pandemic on Giving Trends
Register for upcoming lunch and shares here.
Taproot: A National BIPOC Space
The work of spiritual community is complicated in the 21st century. The need for faithful leadership that is grounded and resilient is imperative. This is all the more true for leaders within our communities and congregations who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPoC). All too aware of this need, Congregational Life is excited to explore and co-create a network with congregational leaders that support them in this time in emergent ways through Taproot: A National BIPOC Space. BIPoC Leaders rooted in the Unitarian Universalist congregations are invited to take part in this monthly, virtual gathering.

Second Thursday of the month. Next meeting December 9th at 9p ET/8p CT/7p MT/6p PT. Details and registration at the UUA website.
A Second Slice of Pi: An Online Conference for Smaller Congregations
Remember Pi Day, March 14, 2020 (3.14) when we were going to have synchronized conferences across the country for smaller congregations? There was going to be a theme of pie for everyone and lots of connecting? And...the pandemic happened instead?

Join us online at the UU Leadership Institute (UULI) on Saturday, March 12th, 2022 from 3 to 5 pm ET for A Second Slice - an updated, pandemic safe conference for smaller congregations! What will be doing? Easy on demand resources for small congregations, opportunities to connect with leaders of other small congregations, and a chance to share your story. Registration will open in January

Has your small (<120 members) congregation done something interesting lately? A new partnership? A unique social justice project? A new way of connecting you members? Would you like to share your success with others? A Second Slice of Pi is looking for stories to share with participants at the conference via a short video (we can help!). Contact your regional staff to let them know you’re interested or submit your idea with this form. Deadline for material submissions is February 1.

Updates from the Lifespan Faith Engagement Office
Workshops Added to Parents and Caregivers Curriculum
Unintended Pregnancy and Ethical Non-monogamy are the newest topics added to the free “Parents and Caregivers as Sexuality Educators” curriculum published by the UUA’s Lifespan Faith Engagement Office.  

The entire program consists of 12 sessions ranging from Communication skills to Re: Hopes and Concerns for Kids’ Sexual Health, Communication, Gender Identity, Sexual Orientation, Relationships, Sexual Health, Decision Making, Consent, Social Media, Pornography, Unintended Pregnancy, and Ethical Non-monogamy. The small group ministry format is suitable for use in person or online, and individuals may also use it for self-study. The curriculum is free and can be downloaded here.

Online OWL Facilitator Trainings Start in January
Registration opened Nov. 8 for four online Our Whole Lives facilitator trainings in January and March. These trainings are for the Grades 7-9/10-12 levels only; other training levels will become available by the end of summer 2021.

The number of in-person trainings should increase as covid-related health statistics improve around the country. The training calendar and registration links are shared here.
New Copyright Primer for Congregations
UUA Publications, in collaboration with the UUA’s legal counsel and staff from Congregational Life, Faith Development, and WorshipWeb, is glad to announce a new resource on copyright and permissions that we hope will make it easier for congregations to determine quickly whether they need permission to use copyrighted material and obtain permission when it is needed. The new page consolidates information that was previously on separate pages and uses 5 questions to lead users to the information that is most relevant to their own circumstances. The Copyright Primer for Congregations includes information about the religious exemption in copyright law and what it does and does not cover, how copyright law applies to the online environment, permissions that some copyright holders have already granted to Unitarian Universalist congregations, how to request permissions from the UUA and other publishers when needed, and the answers to many other common questions. Please send questions and feedback to Mary Benard, Publications Director.
PWR Job Postings
Job openings in PWR congregations are now included on the UUA Jobs Board. Don't worry — even though the URL says "ministrysearch", you'll find all positions posted here. If your congregation has an opening you’d like listed, please complete the online submission form and we'll get it posted for you.
JUUst Breathe Live
The next JUUst Breathe Live is Sunday, December 12th at 5 pm PT / 8 pm ET with Martha Durkee Neuman and other special guests. We’ll be exploring Resonance in Activism. What is resonance and how might it sustain efforts to bring real change in our world? Join us to find out!  Be sure to like and subscribe to this page, follow us on Instagram - Juustbreathelive…and spread the word.
Camp is Back in 2022!
Exciting news! Camp will return in 2022. Dates have been confirmed for High School QUUest Camp and Middle School (Spirit) QUUest Camp, our week-long, residential high school & middle school camp in the mountains. July 3-9, 2022 in Casper, Wyoming. Watch the newsletter and our website for more information as it becomes available.
PWR Emerging Adult Social/Game Night
Free Radical Ministry
For emerging adults who are free range, in college, working, or doing whatever and who want to worship and connect in a social and social justice setting. For UUs across the country! No UU campus ministry where you are? No problem. Get radical! No UU church near you or offering Emerging Adult ministry? No problem. Get radical! Sign up here.
Monthly Youth Worship from The Mountain Top & Colorado UUs for Racial Justice
The Mountain Top BIPOC UU community and Colorado UUs for Racial Justice would like to invite ALL YOUTH, middle and high school, to the first of our monthly youth worship services! Join other youth from the Pacific Western Region for worship, music, community, and fun! Register by December 3 to receive a welcome package by mail.  Contact: Rev. Jen Simon,
PCD Winter Chalice Lighter Call Now Open!
This is your notification of the PCD Winter Chalice Lighters call, benefitting Sierra Foothills UU (SFUU) in Auburn, CA. SFUU was founded in 1982 by 15 people and since then has been serving people from all over Placer and the surrounding counties who are interested in exploring UU beliefs, making a difference in the world, healing from past religious wounds, connecting meaningfully with other people, and learning how to be the best they all can be. The mission of SFUU is to build beloved communities that respect diversities as we nourish the spirit, care for the earth, and inspire faithful acts of peace and justice.

Their building is approximately 100 years old, and they have deferred the roof replacement and HVAC systems as long as they could with continual repair costs. A new roof and HVAC system will allow them to make their building more energy efficient and healthier for their congregation and the planet. SFUU looks forward to creative ideas to improve what they have and build on their work dedicated to being a “Green Sanctuary”. The very old HVAC in particular has challenged them with proper protection during COVID. This is an imperative that they look forward to improving.

Visit the PCD website to read the call letter and make a donation. The Winter call closes February 28, 2022.
Update from Your PNWD Board: Intention to Dissolve
After a period of much discernment, your Pacific Northwest District Board has come to the conclusion that it is time to dissolve our District organization, so that we might join with the Mountain Desert District, Pacific Southwest District, and Pacific Central District in becoming the Pacific Western Region. This is not a decision we’ve made lightly and comes after years of reflection and discussion from many leaders.

We know that for many of you the crucial decision as part of this process is about what will happen to the PNWD Chalice Lighter Program. We are delighted to announce that the Cascadia Growth Fund will take over management of Chalice Lighters! Through promotion of planned giving, Cascadia Growth Fund, formerly known as the Pacific NW UU Growth Fund, has been administering funds for loans to congregations and grants for ministry in the Pacific Northwest since the 1990s and is well suited to carry this vital program forward. We will share more details about this transfer over the coming months, as it takes place.  

We anticipate our dissolution process will take about two months to complete. Over the coming months, we will be overseeing the transfer of the Chalice Lighter Program to Cascadia Growth Fund, dispersing any remaining funds, and preparing for the Regional Assembly. Leading up to, or during, Regional Assembly we plan to host a special PNWD Board meeting, at which you can witness the Board’s vote to dissolve, celebrate past leaders, and affirm the leadership of those continuing from the PNWD Board onto the regional governing body.

We go forward with your prayers, hopes and dreams in all of our hearts and hands.  

In faith,
Your Pacific Northwest District Board
Aria Curtis, Co-President
Susan Howlett, Co-President
Craig Cyr, Vice President
Susan Christie, Secretary
Joseph Bednarik, Treasurer
Christina Davitt, Member at Large

Joint Statement re: PNWD Chalice Lighters Agreement
We are pleased to announce an agreement to transfer the PNWD Chalice Lighters Program to Cascadia Growth Fund, formerly known as the Pacific Northwest UU Growth Foundation, a decision that will preserve the vital role of the Chalice Lighter program in strengthening UU congregations in the Pacific Northwest. Through a process of discernment and collaboration, the Pacific Northwest District Board (PNWD), Staff of the UUA's Pacific Western Region (PWR), and the Board of the Cascadia Growth Fund have agreed to transfer management and support of the program currently provided by the PNWD and PWR respectively, to Cascadia. The Cascadia Growth Fund already provides funding to support Pacific Northwest UU congregations through legacy gifts and donations. ‘Cascadia Chalice Lighters’ will continue to collaborate with PWR Staff, and with Chalice Lighter programs in other areas of the Pacific Western Region. The transition is expected to be complete by end of this fiscal year, June 30, 2022. Details are being worked out and will be communicated to you in the upcoming months. Beneficiaries of and donors to the PNWD Chalice Lighter program should experience little change due to this transition. Donors will be contacted directly with an opportunity to opt out. Our express thanks to PNWD Chalice Lighter Coordinator Dave Cauffman for his counsel and continuing support.

Aria Curtis, President, Pacific Northwest District Board of Trustees
Rev. Carlton E. Smith, Lead, UUA Pacific Western Region
Rev. K. Antonia Won, President, Cascadia Growth Fund
PNWD Winter Chalice Lighter Call Now Open!
Thank you for being a stalwart and generous donor to Chalice Lighters! This is your Winter Call for the 2021-2022 church year: Please help equip the Eastrose Fellowship Unitarian Universalist in Portland to provide hybrid church services. As congregations decide when to reopen, interest in “hybrid” in-person services, that can simultaneously be attended virtually by congregants in their homes, has mounted. This capability is especially valuable to serve those whose immune systems are compromised or who cannot or choose not to attend indoor worship services. Eastrose has planned a comprehensive professional turn-key solution to the problem and is willing to share their equipment list and operating experience with other UU congregations.

Your congregation may be one of those who need equipment to provide such capabilities. If so, encourage your leaders to apply for a Chalice Lighter Growth Technology grant. An application form is available through the PNWD Chalice Lighters web page. The form contains further guidance on award criteria. We will review applications as they are submitted. At the present time, funds from the Fall Call are available to make immediate grants. We also invite applications to receive the full proceeds of the next Spring Call.

For more information, to make a donation, or to apply for a grant, visit the PNWD website. The Winter call is open until February 28, 2022.
InSpirit UU Book and Gift Shop
Holiday Gift Guide from inSpirit
Shop Early This Holiday Season!

As you may be aware, global supply chain issues are affecting many, if not all, industries this holiday season and the book world is no exception. The incredible booksellers at inSpirit have some recommendations that they hope will make your holiday shopping easier so you can focus on the joys of the season. They have also highlighted some of their favorite gift ideas in the holiday guide! Free standard shipping on orders of $50 or more within the U.S. is available now through December 5th.

Here are some favorites from the holiday guide:

Black Boy Joy, edited by Kwame Mbalia—Celebrate the joys of Black boyhood with stories from seventeen bestselling and critically acclaimed Black authors.

Defund Fear: Safety Without Policing, Prisons, and Punishment by Zach Norris—A groundbreaking new vision for public safety that overturns more than 200 years of fear-based discrimination, othering, and punishment. The 2021-2022 UU Common Read.

Shelter in This Place: Meditations on 2020, edited by Rev. Meg Riley—The 2021 volume of the inSpirit Series is an anthology of poems, prayers, and reflections from Unitarian Universalists about their experiences of 2020.

Side With Love Adult T Shirt—Organize. Dream. Vote. Resist. Abolish. Repair. Protest. The striking word cloud design is perfect for expressing your values and siding with love.

Stoneware chalices—Handcrafted from stoneware clay, these striking personal chalices are available in graphite, speckled gold, brown, and light green.

Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times by Katherine May—An intimate, revelatory book exploring the ways we can care for and repair ourselves when life knocks us down.


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