News and updates from the Central East Region to keep your congregation informed.
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News and updates from the Central East Region of the UUA to keep your congregation informed.
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Opportunities for Connection
CER Update
~ May 2023
Quick Links
Featured Resource: CERSI and UUMAC Together!
Summer Institute (CERSI) will be teaming up with UUMAC (UU Mid-Atlantic Community) this year for a joint camp at PennWest University in California, PA. Everyone is welcome to join us for a week of community, fun, learning and sharing.

Adult theme speaker CB Beal (they/them/theirs), is a storyteller, educator, and speaker who is known for their humor, insight, ability to use their own foibles and unfortunate life experiments as cautionary tale, and to  hold space where people can be braver and safer, facilitating learning experiences where people get to make their next move towards justice. Through stories, reflections, and conversation about practices of preemptive radical inclusion, CB will help us explore our capacity for witness, self examination and change. The theme is The Call is Coming From Inside the House: Preemptive Radical Inclusion and Practices for Witness, Self Examination and Change.

Youth have their own speaker and program and children have daily RE programming each morning. Drop-in programming, including games and art for all ages, is offered in the afternoon. Evenings are filled with community fun time such as a talent show and games.

Registration is open. Scholarship Deadline is May 31.
Learn more today at the CERSI website. Registration closes June 20th.
General Assembly 2023 - Delegates and Governance Issues
General Assembly 2023 is coming to Pittsburgh, PA! Join us June 21-25, 2023 in-person or virtually to worship, witness, learn, connect, and make policy for the Association through the democratic process.

  • Has your congregation selected your delegates yet? You need to soon! The delegate credentials site is now open and mini-assemblies and other gatherings have already been scheduled. Learn more at the GA Governance page.
  • Not sure how to select delegates or participate? Check out our blog post on this topic.
  • Business-only Virtual Registrants can participate in the business sessions for free, but do not have access to any other programming. Details at the GA registration page.

Do note that
registration is open for virtual and in-person participation. Rates go up May 15! Stay tuned for more deadlines and announcements. All details and information can be found on the UUA GA Webpages.
Central East Region 2023 Security Update Training
Many of our congregations have experienced security threats in recent months, from protests to destruction of property to disruption in events. This program will offer a presentation on the core needs in safety and security: prevention, response, and after-care. We will have brief worship, workshops, and time to speak with other congregations about the work they are doing and/or questions they are reflecting on.

All members of UU congregations and communities are welcome to attend- particularly members of staff, boards, religious education committees, and safety teams.

Saturday, May 6, 2023, 12-3 pm ET, online. Cost $10 per participant. Register Today!
Money Connect: Budgets and Our Covenants
Thursday, May 11, 2023, 7-8:30 pm ET for program, online.
Congregations are facing a lot of changes and challenges around church budgets. Changing demographics, economic uncertainty, and general anxiety can make the budget planning process overwhelming and stressful, especially when planning five to ten years out.

We’ll have a pre-recorded panel (watch on your own or log in at 6:30 pm ET to watch together) with some general framing. The evening will start with some spiritual practices that can help lower anxiety and keep our brains in a creative mode. We’ll have some large-group discussion about the prework,  then breakout rooms where you will have time to share and brainstorm with other congregations of similar size. Register today!
Part-Time and Thriving! Webinar
If your congregation currently has or is thinking about part-time ministry, this event is for you! If you’re a minister currently serving or planning to serve as a part-time minister, this event is for you! If you’re just curious about what part-time ministry is all about, this event is for you!

“The Possibilities of Part-Time Ministry” will take place on Saturday, May 13, 2023, 12-5pm ET/9am-2pm PT, featuring theme speaker G. Jeffrey MacDonald, author of Part-Time is Plenty, Thriving without Full-Time Clergy. In addition to the keynote, there will be multiple one-hour workshops on all aspects of part-time ministry. A recording will be available for those who can't attend. Registration includes a promo code for a 40% discounts on MacDonald's book. Registration is open

Jubilee 3 Anti-Racism Training
Do you wish to deepen your understanding of how race and ethnicity play out in our institutions and our daily lives? Are you ready to take a leading role to nurture a multicultural future in the face of opposing cultural currents? Come Join Us for this Life-Changing Weekend!

Weekend Activities: The training includes presentations, discussions, videos, exercises, and small group work. This 2 ½ day workshop is open to anyone who wants to journey toward making a stand against racism. Church members and church leaders of any faith, as well as non-church members are all welcome! June 2-4, 2023 online. Registration and details at the CER website.
Our Whole Lives Trainings for All Ages Coming!

Our Whole Lives Facilitator Training for Secondary Levels, July 21-23, 2023, Wilmington, DE. Registration opening next week.
Our Whole Lives Facilitator Training for Elementary Levels, August, 2023, York, PA
Our Whole Lives Facilitator Training for Adult Levels, August, 2023, York, PA

There are several trainings in the works, so do check our calendar often for updates.

Our Whole Lives (OWL) is an excellent, comprehensive sexuality education program that offers participants the opportunity to explore their values and gain accurate information about topics that are often not easily accessible. The overall goal of the Our Whole Lives program is to help participants gain the knowledge, values, and skills they need to lead sexually healthy, responsible lives. The goals of this workshop are to prepare the participants to implement the curriculum as well as the Sexuality and Our Faith component. Through a varied program including practice and participation activities, the trainers will cover implementation techniques, curricula details, and technical information. You can see all trainings at the UUA Our Whole Lives Facilitator Page.
Religious Education Opportunities
Religious Education Professional Meet-Up, May 9, 2023, 12-1:30 pm ET, online
We are inviting religious education professionals from across the continent to virtually join members of the UUA’s Faith Development Co-Lab for a time of deep connection with other religious educators.
Our connection theme will be Article II. Joy Berry, the UUA’s Children and Families Faith Development Specialist, will be sharing about developments with Article II, and will be joined by Faith Development Co-Lab members, Lenore Bajare-Dukes, Eric Bliss and Nancy Combs-Morgan. Our goal is not to "fill you up" with information, but more so to have time for the attendees to share their thoughts about Article II, and especially what they have been asked to do in reference to the process. There will be some processing time after the breakouts, and then with a closing that contains more references to Article II content and resources.

Teacher Development Renaissance Module, Tuesdays, July 18 through August 15, 12-2 pm ET.
The Teacher Development Renaissance module is an online learning experience comprised of five two-hour webinars with reading and other assignments for each session. Cost is $250. Registration closes on July 14th or when full.
Creative Conflict
A Blog by Connie Goodbread, Acting Director, HOPE for Us Conflict Engagement Team

As human beings we are conflict avoidant – until we are not. Then we are willing to destroy one another.

Conflict begins when there is more than one idea, opinion, or experience in the room. We are so conflict avoidant that we even avoid using the word conflict for this experience. We can’t see that in the beginning, when there are a bunch of different ideas in the room, conflict is creative. This creative moment is called by some studies, “creative disequilibrium” – the state we are in when we do not know the answer. When we are unsure.

Read the rest of the blog.
Better Together Blog: Keeping Our Congregations Safe in 2023
by Rev. Sunshine Wolfe

Congregational leaders have been reaching out with concerns around safety both in person and online as tensions increase in some areas of the country. This blog will address some of those concerns.

Rev. Sunshine Wolfe speaks about these issues in this short YouTube Video.

Would you like to receive this weekly blog in your inbox? You can! Sign up!
Better Together Blog: The Culture Wars Hit Home
by Renee Ruchotzke.

Dear Beloved Trans Families,
There are evil forces in our country, and you have become their latest target. We, your cis-family siblings, are angry and scared and frustrated along with you. We support your fierce, protective love for the children as you plan your escape to safer ground and kinder community, and will grieve your absence if and when it comes to that.

Read the rest of the article

Would you like to receive this weekly blog in your inbox? You can! Sign up!
CER Events at a Glance
The following events are upcoming in the region. For full details and a complete list visit the CER Calendar Page. Also, please note, if you are mailing a check to the regional office to pay for your registration, you must write the name and date of the event in the memo line. Otherwise we may not get it properly credited.

If you are looking for Renaissance Modules for Religious Educators or Our Whole Lives Trainings, check the full calendar on the UUA website.

If your congregation or cluster has an exciting project that could use funding from our Chalice Lighter Program, our next Intent to Apply deadline is August 1 for grants to be awarded in November, 2023.
News from the UUA
Flower Communion Resources in honor of the 100th anniversary of flower communion can be found on the UUA website. They include music, readings, and an in-depth conversation with Rev. Dr. Petr Samjosky, who serves as minister of the Prague Unitarian Congregation.

We invite you to contribute your story of lived experience of disability in a UU congregation. Nothing about Us without Us! That is the rallying cry of the Disability Rights Movement and one we intend to honor.
We are working with Skinner House to publish a book on the lived experience of disability in congregations. We are seeking authors, named or anonymous, who would be willing to share their authentic story. If chosen, these candidates will receive an honorarium. We want the book to have a strong intersectional framework, so we are looking for stories in which authors bring their whole selves. We welcome you to reflect on how your other identities are part of your experience as a disabled person in a UU community. This book is meant to give insight into how disabled people worship and experience life in their congregations; how disability impacts a person’s faith, spiritual identity, and showing up with your authentic self. It will show the gifts that disabled people can bring to their congregations. It is also a book on moving from the Disability Rights Movement to the Disability Justice Movement. Please let us know if you would be able to write your story or be interviewed.
We hope that this message is viewed far and wide and realize that we may need additional permissions. If you are under 18, or sharing with someone under 18, we welcome your story! AND we ask that you let us know, so we may obtain the proper permissions. A rough draft of your submission is due on May 15, 2023. Please send your submission to Details at the EqUUal Access Website.

The UUA has a Disaster Relief Fund for those who want to make a donation to help congregations who have faced losses due to tornadoes, earthquakes, hurricanes, wildfires and more. Please donate if you can. To learn more about the work of the Disaster Relief Fund visit their webpage. If your congregation needs assistance, you can apply for a grant on that webpage. We are Better Together.

Virtual Guest in Your Pulpit! The UUMA has a list of virtual speakers, check it out to see who is available! Visit the UUMA website to read the list. Also, don't forget to check out the CER Guest in Your Pulpit program, which includes both lay and professional worship leaders.

New publications from the UUA
- Available now for preorder is Authentic Selves: Celebrating Trans and Nonbinary People and Their Families, interviews by Peggy Gillespie. The Discussion Guide for the 2022-23 Common Read: Mistakes and Miracles: Congregations on the Road to Multiculturalism by Nancy Palmer Jones and Karin Lin is now available.

The UUA is hiring for several positions. Find job descriptions and application information at their Job Openings  webpage.

Congregation, Cluster and Affiliate Groups News and Events
Our congregations and clusters in the region have many exciting activities and announcements going on. For a complete listing of events, visit the CER Congregations and Clusters Calendar Page. For news from congregations, please visit our News Blog. For job listings from congregations check the UUA Job Board.

If your congregation or cluster has news or events to share, please send it to us at
This work is made possible by the generosity of member congregations and individual donors.
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Central East Region of the UUA, 100 W 10th Street Suite 1008, Wilmington, DE 19801, United States

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Central East Region of the UUA
100 W 10th Street Suite 1008
Wilmington, DE 19801
United States