UUA Outreach Group - Your Gateway to the Larger UU World

Churches and Fellowships in the Portland Metro Area:  We invite you to visit and get acquainted with UU congregations throughout our larger community. Each welcomes your visit with interest. To see a list, click here.
Committee Role:
The Board of Trustees recently completed a 3 year project to develop a vision for First Unitarian and its place in the community. That new vision statement guides the work of our staff and committees.

First Unitarian is a beacon of hope for us and for our community, a spiritual center in the heart of our city that helps each of us to find our moral compass, calling and challenging us to build the beloved community with an ever deepening sense of spirit, diversity and inclusion.

During the visioning process four pillar concepts framed the discussion as it went forward. These central ideas project First Unitarian as:

• Center for Spiritual Deepening
• Welcoming, Inclusive and Diverse Community
• Center for Community Involvement and Justice Making
• Center for Strengthening UU's Connections.

The UUA Outreach group is central to our church’s success in this last item. Explore the pages that follow to see how we do this work.


2016-17 UUA Outreach Group members: (left) Rev. Kate Lore, staff liaison, Bill Pryor (Right) Jim Shorr,  Lorraine Wheeler, Leslie Pohl-Kosbau, Stan Jewett, Ed McClaran, Ken Wheeler,  The First Unitarian Church banner takes part in ceremonies at UUA General Assembly, and the Pacific Northwest District Assemblies and social justice events locally. The exciting, colorful banner parade is a highlight of annual gatherings of UU’s from all over the US and Canada.

The Committee meets monthly on the last Wednesday, 7:00–8:30pm, in B310. Visitors are always welcome.

2016-2017 Goals:

Summary Goals, with developmental tasks  were developed at the recent Committee retreat. The goals are as follows:

Mission of the UUA Outreach Group

"The mission of the UUA Outreach Group is to help the congregation connect with, and support, the larger UU faith movement, collaborate with other congregations, and facilitate our participation in the UUA governance process."

Proposed goals of the UUA Outreach Group for 2016-17

1.    The UUA Outreach Group is recognized in First Unitarian Church by its activities that involve and link our congregation with the broader Unitarian Universalist movement.

Task: Welcome and communicate at Fuller Hall table each Sunday

Task: Promote and publicize UUA activities and connections to congregation

Task: Connect congregants with UUA affiliates and UUA activities

Task: Raise awareness of the benefits of First Church membership in the UUA

2.    UUAOG participates in Mt. Hood Cluster meetings and activities and promotes them to members of First Unitarian Church

Task: The UUAOG represents First Unitarian at Cluster meetings, and provides information to the Church membership, leaders, Board and Executive Team

Task: Collaborate with cluster congregations on agreed upon projects/activities of common concern."

3.    UUAOG recruits, trains, supports and proposes delegates from First Church to General Assembly, Regional and District activities and meetings.

Task: meet deadlines for delegates and publicize UU Association issues in the congregation

Task: request funds for delegate registrations in Church budget

4.    UUAOG reaches out to First Church congregation and staff to involve( achieve) our active participation in UUA activities and support.

Task: Support Chalice Lighters with information and recruitment for “calls”

Task: Strengthen communication between UUAOG and the Board and Executive Team.

Task: Recruit new UUA Outreach Group members from GA reps and leadership

Task: Invite leaders of UUA groups within our congregation to inform us and the congregation of their purpose and work

Task: Facilitate discussion in the congregation about our role in the larger movement (e.g. Fair Share).


In most UU congregations there are members who see Unitarian Universalism as a movement that has impact in our communities and the world here and now. They often gather under the name of Denominational Affairs . They help members connect with the activities of the UUA, other congregations and activist interest groups. Here at First Unitarian, a growing membership, an active social justice scene and the emerging Mt Hood Area Cluster mean our Committee is more active than ever. Committee members have often held other church leadership positions, and frequently represent the Church as delegates to District and General Assemblies. If your interest lies in the larger picture of UU ministry, join us! This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , 503-310-0679, would love to hear from you.

How Do We Do That?
Click here to read the minutes of our last meeting.   Click here to review our annual report for FY 2015. 


Unitarian Universalism is a religious movement with many moving parts. You can find descriptions of the Unitarian Universalist Association and its component elements on the Denomination page. Click here to visit this page.

Unitarian Universalist Association: www.uua.org
First Unitarian is a member of the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations located in Boston, MA. Formed from the merger of Unitarian and Universalist organizations in 1961, the Association provides key communications and services for us. Our annual support of the UUA brings national leadership and visibility, support services and focus for our professional personnel. To learn more about our involvement in Association affairs contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

General Assembly: www.uua.org/ga
Each summer UU’s from 1100 congregations on this continent gather to conduct business, explore faith issues and work GAvotingon social justice matters that impact our world. This year's meeting is June 21-25 here in New Orleans, LA. Look for more details and links to General Assembly on the Assemblies and Events page.  

We go to General Assembly (GA) to be grounded in our faith, energized for justice and with resources to bring this work home to our congregations.  Members of First Unitarian attend as delegates and to enrich their own UU experience.  If you have questions about General Assembly or about attending as a delegate, click on the link above or contact any member of the First Unitarian UUA Outreach Group. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  Right now is the time to be asking questions and/or filling out a delegate application. The delegate designation process concludes in February.

Pacific Western Region ( including Pacific Northwest District):         www.uua.org/pacific-western         
UU member congregations in the western states are served by the Pacific Northwest District, whose executive and specialist staff and programs are located in Bellevue, WA. Congregations of all sizes call on the District for help in such areas as: ministerial search, religious education program development, capital fund raising and building programs, church finance, membership growth and development, and personnel transitions. The region publishes a periodic newsletter. Access and subscribe to it at the link above. Click here to read more about the District and Region

Chalice Lighters:
For the Pacific Northwest District of the UUA, Chalice Lighters is a group of forward-thinking UUs who want to help the Association grow regionally in very practical ways through targeted cash donations.   Learn more about Chalice Lighters by clicking on www.pnwd.org/ or to learn more about the current call for support, click here.

Eliot Institute Camps at the Seabeck, WA, Conf. Center
Eliot Institute creates and supports an inclusive community of celebration, friendship, exploration, relaxation and joy for Unitarian Universalists, their families and friends. The Institute has been fulfilling that mission for over 50 years by organizing multigenerational camps at the Seabeck Conference Center (www.seabeck.org) in Seabeck, WA. Further information and directions to the website are found on the Assemblies and Events page.

UU World: www.uuworld.org/Each member of First Unitarian receives a subscription to UU World, the six times yearly publication of the UUA. Feature articles on faith issues, UUA news bulletins, General Assembly programs, and activities of individual UU’s and affiliated organizations provide readers with regular information and understanding about the UUA and its presence in our national life. Featured in the current issue is the following story:

UU Churches and Fellowships in the Greater Portland Area:

Eastrose Fellowship UU
Gresham, OR       
Phone: (503) 665-2628
Website: www.eastrose.org

UU Community Church of Washington County    
Hillsboro, OR       
Phone: (503) 648-1720
Website: www.uuccwc.org

Mid Columbia UU Fellowship
Hood River, OR   
Phone: (541) 387-4011
Website: www.mcuuf.org

Atkinson Memorial Church
Oregon City, OR   
Phone: (503) 656-7296
Website: www.atkinsonchurch.org

Wy'east UU Congregation
Portland, OR       
Phone: (503) 777-3704
Website: www.wyeastuu.org/

West Hills UU Fellowship
Portland, OR       
Phone: (503) 246-3351
Website: www.whuuf.net

South Park UU Fellowship   
West Linn, OR       
Phone: (503) 655-1290
Website: www.southparkunitarian.org

UU Church of Vancouver
Vancouver, WA   
Phone: (360) 695-1891
Website: www.uucvan.org

You may also find congregations through the church locator application on the UUA website:


Regions, Clusters and the Whole UUA:

Our church is one of more than 1000 churches and fellowships that belong to the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) which is headquartered in Boston. Almost all these congregations are smaller than First Unitarian; the great majority are fewer than 100 members. Both large churches and small congregations have many developmental needs that the UUA supports. Some of these are provided in/by Boston, such as the website, Beacon Press, and General Assembly planning. Many more are provided directly to congregations through the District and Regional offices.

Such consulting activities as ministerial search and settlement, building funds and campaigns, conflict resolution and religious education programming have been provided through a network of 5 regions, each staffed by trained professionals dedicated to strengthening our congregations’ presence in their communities.  Ours is the Pacific Western Region, headquartered in Denver. Future Regional Assemblies are on the drawing board.

Mt. Hood Area Cluster: Members of the congregations in the larger Portland-Vancouver meet the second Sunday during the church year at 1:45 pm rotating among participating churches.  We create and maintain a culture of shared ministry among all cluster congregation members and ministers, and seek/implement activities and events for congregations and their members that are best accomplished together. Images of our consolidated participation in Portland's Pride Parade in 2013 appear below:


For the third year we all marched under the unifying cluster banner (see above), and also featured signs by the Hillsboro congregation that simply stated our principles for those watching the parade.

Cluster Day workshops are coming! Read about the first Cluseter Day events and also latest  beach clean up project conducted with SOLV on the Assemblies and Events page. Find it on the Nav bar. Upcoming meetings include:   Our 4th Annual All Cluster Picnic at Hood River on Sunday, July 27th.
Check out our website: www.pdxvanuu.org Questions? Email UUA Outreach Group Co-Chair This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Affiliated Societies and Organizations:
Within the scope of Unitarian Universalist interests and concerns many activities, concerns and interests are gathered. The website at the UUA lists nearly 100 organizations and societies that pursue principles at the heart of UUism. Find a listing and links for these organizations at the UUARead more about them on our Allied with Principles page.

Unitarian Universalist Service Committee

The Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC) is a nonsectarian organization thatuusc advances human rights and social justice in the United States and around the world. It envisions a world free from oppression and injustice, where all can realize their full human rights. Through a combination of advocacy, education, and partnerships with grassroots organizations, UUSC promotes economic rights, advances environmental justice, defends civil liberties, and preserves the rights of people in times of humanitarian crisis. Read more about UUSC, click here

UU United Nations Office

The Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office (UU-UNO) serves UU congregations as the center uuunoof information, advocacy and action at the United Nations and its affiliated agencies in NewYork City. The UU UN Office provides UUs a locus to join hands with the international community to build world community with peace and justice. Faith and action intersect forUUs in the global arena of the United Nations and its affiliated non-governmentalorganizations. The UU UN Office joins about 400 other faith-based organizations withconsultative status at the United Nations; each exercising influence to foster the values of their faith.   Read more about UUUNO, click here.

UU Voice
s for Justice:
UUVJA statewide advocacy network that mobilizes Unitarian Universalists and their congregations to work for public policies in the state of Oregon that embody our UU principles of justice, equity, compassion in human relations and global stewardship. Current efforts focus on climate change, health care reform, and sentence reform/death penalty abolition. Oregon UU Voices for Justice is one of fifteen statewide UU advocacy networks nationwide, and sponsors a legislative advocacy day every February. Each fall priorities are set for the next State legislative session.  Folks can get involved by contacting the working group connecting with each issue via http://www.uuvoicesoregon.org    or email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For further information contact Oregon UU Voices Consulting Executive, Rev. Katie Larsell, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


Religion and religious practice can find a home in our lives and spirit. For those who feel a special calling to minister, our faith offers two seminaries whose teaching is within the Unitarian Universalist tradition. We invite you to talk about ministry as a career with any of our ministerial staff, and to further your  exploration by contacting these seminaries.
Read more about two seminaries that follow Unitarian Universalist traditions, click here.


First Unitarian Contributes to the UU Movement

First Unitarian is a Teaching Church

Watch this space for upcoming reportage on our next interim minister, TJ Fitzgerald....

First Unitarian is a Mentor Church

In addition to direct teaching, First Unitarian also teaches by example and sharing. We do this through the UUA sponsored Leap of Faith Program, read more. First Church was invited to participate as a "mentor" to Jefferson Unitarian (JUC) in Golden, CO. As in all mentoring relationships, we learned as well as taught. Golden  "wrote the book" (actually made the video) on welcoming and new member assimilation. The Golden team visited First Church in October for exchange of ideas and experience. One benefit for First Church was learning the details of JUC's exciting addition of a second campus in Evergreen, CO. Jefferson Senior Minister, Rev. Wendy Williams, recently preached at First Church in a continuation of this productive relationship.

First Unitarian is a Partner Church

Did you know that First Unitarian has a partner church in Budapest, Hungary?  This partnership was established by congregational vote in May, 2004 with the intent to develop cross-cultural ties, exchange theological, philosophical and political ideas and to engender mutual support of Unitarians around the world.  In addition we seek, by this partnership, to create a historical connection, personally engage in peaceful dialogues with our international brethren, and understand ourselves in an international context.

Rose  Arpad in NagyataOver the years we have indeed developed some wonderful friendships with our Unitarian brethren there and learned much about their lives and our Unitarian heritage.  There have been several adult and youth visits to our partners in Budapest.  We have also hosted their youth and Minister József Kászoni, and members Árpád Gazdag and Rozalia Léta here in Portland. Wonderful friendships have been formed and much learning about our Unitarian heritage and the lives of our Unitarian partners has occurred. 

Our YRUU group is raising funds for a group visit to this church in the summer of 2014. Look for details at the YRUU table in Buchan reception.

First Unitarian is a Sponsor Church

First Church has sponsored groups or churches selectively over the years, as a way of showing support for humanitarian work around the world.

Most Recent Meeting Minutes:

First Unitarian Church of Portland

UUA Outreach Group

 Meeting Minutes


Sunday, January 29, 2017
4:20 PM
Opening words and chalice lighting
Attending: Ed McClaran < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. >, Stan Jewett < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. >, Ed McClaran < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. >, Bill Pryor < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. >
Broken wrist from fall
New "green" car
Heat pumps for condo
Another fall no breaks :-)
Child accepted to mid-wife school
Family visits from out of state
Got nasty cold
Clogged plumbing
All good
Approval of November 30 minutes
Approved unanimously
Report back on First Church District Fair Share contributions - Ed
Kathryn Estey < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. > is says we are still sending a portion of dues each month.  4 people are on staff at the district level.  Only program is the chalice lighters program.  Website is mostly links to external resources.  "Only value is chalice lighters".  Last budget was the '15/'16 period was $93,700 in staff compensation.  We were paying rental for district office but that has now been closed.  District board and nominating committee get paid travel expenses.
The ET would be the decision maker on deciding to send more money or not, or to redirect.
The question also was raised about who makes decisions re: allocation of funds, and whether the Chalice Lighter program was redundant to grant programs available through UUA.
Stan will do a fact finding mission in Eugene next month.  Delaying a recommendation until after his report.  (Note: Stan will also questioning why we need to a Chalice Lighters program?  Are the funds protected, audited, is decision making transparent?)
SOLVe beach cleanup - Stan
April 1st this year.  Leslie Pohl-Kosbau < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. > will communicate to Community for Earth.  Will be organized by Becky Simpson from West Hills.  Agreed we need to promote from the table starting in March.
Need handout for SOLVe that can be shared at the cluster level (Stan will explore options)
Table Talk  --  Some interest in Elliot camp
NOGA publicity, delegate recruitment and section
Gesture of appreciation for Cassandra - Nice eye catching poster.  Send a nice letter to Kathryn (Bill will author and send the letter)
Thank you, Leslie
Delegate Recruitment.  Reviewed policy letter with Kathryn with feedback and edits.  Changes are approved by the committee.  Starting to get names of 3-4 interested people.  Will continue to show the poster on Sundays.
The committee recommends to the ET Stan and Bill are a delegates to the District Committee Meeting. (Bill will contact ET)
Cluster report and Cluster Day -- Stan
Centralize SOLVe communication through cluster (see above)
Reviewed minutes from the last two meetings
Cluster Day worked out registration process, schedule for the day (9-4:15 UU Congregation at Willamette Falls in Oregon City), no charge except optional $10 lunch.We should push Cluster Day through the table by publishing the schedule.  Note: this is mostly a leadership training forum. (Stan will make materials available at the table, Stan will also forward the information to Ken Wheeler < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. >)
Discussion on role of Chalice Lighters at Cluster vs. District Level and relationships to UUA Fair share congregations.  No action taken.
District meeting --  Discussed earlier in the meeting no additional comments.
Consideration of UU groups/affiliates to support from the table -- reference the list provided by Curt Bell in his Dec. 15 email
UUA GA Delegates
We have a larger list that Kurt provided but no recommendations.
Needs some corrections.  Each committee member should review, redline in Microsoft Word and forward corrections to Bill by Sunday 19th February.