Leadership News

Notes from UUA Outreach Group


More than a dozen winning bidders joined the UUA Outreach Group recentlycdpape to enjoy a wine tasting and good companionship. This was the first Committee sponsored auction event and offered both an interesting venture into viniculture in Oregon and beyond, plus a rare opportunity for church members to talk about the Unitarian Universalist Association, its various parts and activities. Shown below is committee member Jim Shorr telling the story behind one of the wines he contributed to the tasting.


Opportunities of Scale:

We know about economies of scale -- lower cost of input, and also about efficiencies of scale -- lower cost of through-put. There are also opportunities of scale -- simply put, those chances that come to you just because you have the size to attract them. I’ve been noticing these around First Unitarian this year. For example, we showcased an intern conductor recently, Owen Hoffman-Smith of Eastrose UU Fellowship, was completing requirements for his Masters in Choral Conducting from PSU. Others come to mind, such as the mentoring relationship First Unitarian will enter with Jefferson Church of Golden, CO, a mid-size church working on a growth vector to  ward large church status. Emergence of our young adult ministry is another, of course, brought simply because we are positioned to attract these new members. As we look forward to building our intentional future, let’s remind ourselves how much of the richness and diversity we enjoy about First Unitarian comes from our ability to attract what we want in our religious experience.

Confluence Committee Update: A New Name!

We found our old name confused some folks, so we’ve renamed our Committee the UUA Outreach Group. We’re the same people doing the same things -- being your gateway to everything UU outside the church. We link you to the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) and exciting events like General Assembly. We connect you to the Pacific Northwest District and Pacific Western Region with their education, training and fund raising efforts like Chalice Lighters. You get briefings on Mt Hood Cluster meetings and events we share with all other UU congregations in the Portland area. And we link you with many of the UU interest groups that thrive in our effort to bring about a more just and compassionate society. Check us out on the website. Drop by our table in Fuller Hall any Sunday.




Mt Hood Area Cluster Annual Picnic

Mt Hood Area Cluster of UU Congregations--
Annual Potluck Picnic
Sunday, May 19, at 3 p.m. in Hood River, sponsored by Mid-Columbia UU Fellowship of Hood River.

This will be a non-business get-together. Meet at the Rockford Grange, 4262 Barrett Dr., Hood River.

Get directions here (allow an hour+ from downtown Portland).

Bring whatever you like; this is a free-for-all potluck. Drinks, dishes, and silverware provided. Also available: refrigerators, stoves, microwaves, etc. Why not first attend the Mid-Columbia UU Fellowship for worship at 10 a.m.? Rev. Ken Jones, the new interim minister, will speak, and several members of the congregation will provide sightseeing tours between the service and the potluck. If you plan to attend, contact >  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , so he can alert our hosts.


Invitation to a Wellspring Information Session

Have you heard about Wellspring? It is a program that was piloted at our church this past year with thirteen participants in a spiritually deepening journey within our Unitarian Universalist tradition.  It was a rich experience over 10 months.

We plan to offer this program again beginning September 2013-June 2014.  If you are interested in participating, please come to an information session on Sunday, May 26 at 12:35—after the second service.

Now in its fifth year of success throughout the UUA, the Wellspring program offers a spiritual journey dedicated to claiming, re-imagining, and practicing the ever-evolving living tradition of our faith.

Wellspring is an opportunity for learning more about ourselves and our faith through five interconnected components:

  • commitment to a daily spiritual practice,
  • monthly spiritual direction (self-reflection with a guide),
  • small group meetings twice a month ,
  • reading about the theological and historical foundations of our faith, and
  • putting our faith into action.

One of our current participants wrote: “I learned more about the foundation of UU history and how our church arrived to where we are today.” We sampled Buddhism, Transcendentalism, Humanism and more. We celebrated Winter Solstice, a truly lovely experience. We introduced our personal spiritual practices and in the process we learned to trust each other with our souls. Now we are building our on beliefs. We had fine facilitators to nurture our growth and it has been a most amazing experience. I love it and I will continue to expand my beliefs.

After an introductory retreat day in the September, Wellspring groups will meet twice a month through June 2014.

Join us for a Wellspring Information Session to learn more and to help you decide whether Wellspring is a commitment you want to make.   Please join us after the second service on Sunday, May 26, in the Channing Room.  Bring your questions, and your open hearts.  We look forward to seeing you there.

Rev. Marcia Schekel, Ron Walker, Ann Faricy


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