Dear People’s people,
I write this note as I prepare to head to Spokane, Washington for Ministry Days, the annual meeting of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association (June 17-19) and the Unitarian Universalist Association General Assembly, the annual meeting of our association (June 19-23). We are gathering for a week of learning, growing, connecting and inspiration. The ministers will be discussing holding ourselves to higher ethical standards and how to better hold one another accountable and restore right relationship when we fall short of our aspirations for ourselves.
Even if you aren’t going to Spokane, there are ways to participate in General Assembly from a distance. Many of the events are recorded and can be watched later. Here’s the website: https://www.uua.org/ga/off-site/2019 The events I am most looking forward to include two worship services: The Service of the Living Tradition and the Sunday Morning Service, which feature some of the best music and preaching that Unitarian Universalism has to offer. There is also a public lecture by poet Richard Blanco, who was the inaugural poet for President Obama’s second inauguration and whose poem about marriage equality was read in our Sunday service on June 9. There are also business sessions that will take up issues related to amending UUA bylaws and the ongoing work of better living the values we profess. I encourage you to check out some of these videos and be inspired. I will plan to reflect on my experience at General Assembly – and show clips from some of these events – during one of our summer services.
This year, I am the only People’s person attending I planned to attend this year because I can combine work and visiting family. My parents are coming from Seattle to attend GA. After GA, my family and I are going to Boise, Idaho to see my brother and his family.
I hope that in the future, I can be part of a larger People’s Church delegation to General Assembly. I invite you to consider attending a GA sometime in the future. GA will be held in Providence, Rhode Island June 24-28, 2020 and in Milwaukee, WI June 23-27, 2021. It is powerful to gather with a few thousand other UUs to learn, do business, be inspired, share best practices, and sing together. If you are interested in attending a future GA, please talk to me. I would love to tell you more about it.
See you in church,
Rev. Rachel on Study Leave
Rev. Rachel will be on study leave July 8 to August 4. During this time, she will be (mostly) away from normal duties to focus on research, learning, and planning for the upcoming program year. Her projects include planning the children’s worship circles that will launch in the fall; setting the schedule for service leaders and selecting topics for the services in The Commons; researching how other churches manage their administrative functions; reading theology, poetry, and other inspiring things; planning some upcoming adult religious education offerings; and reading through and understanding the documents of the Foundation for Excellence, on whose board she now serves.
During her study leave, Rev. Rachel will be less available for meetings and checking email less frequently in order to have sustained attention for the projects listed above. If you experience a pastoral emergency and need to reach her, please do not hesitate to call her on her cell phone.