For the past few years, the Unitarian Universalist Association has organized Association Sunday
as a way to raise funds that target specific areas of growth and strengthen our connections with each other. This year, Association Sunday funds will support Excellence in Ministry
, concentrating on ways that we can enhance development and continuing education among our three professional ministries: ordained clergy, religious educators and musicians.
In preparation for this event, scheduled for October in most of our congregations, the UUMA (UU Ministers Association), LREDA (Liberal Religious Educators Association) and UUMN (UU Musicians Network) have teamed up to develop programs which will further our shared commitment towards promoting transformative ministry in our congregations and our Association. Each organization will submit requests to the UUA including scholarships for religious professionals, resources for small congregations, coaching programs for ordained clergy and seminarians, and education in multigenerational, multicultural worship.
In addition, UUMA, LREDA and UUMN are crafting a proposal that will provide the opportunity for our members to work and study together. We hope to create resources that we can use in the congregations and institutions where we serve. We are excited about the possibilities that this type of shared learning offers to us individually and to Unitarian Universalism.
As a show of support for Association Sunday 2011, the Boards of UUMA, LREDA and UUMN have taken the unprecedented action of making lead gift pledges totaling $10,000. We encourage our members to give generously and perhaps pool your donations (perhaps from wedding, workshop or music fees) and announce them as a lead gift in advance.
There are resources on the UUA website with offerings of readings, stories, music and multigenerational resources which your congregation can access in its planning of Association Sunday. We urge religious professionals to work together in the planning and implementation of this special Sunday, and hope that all of our congregations will participate in this program to support our shared ministry which ultimately benefits our member congregations.
Please join us in supporting Association Sunday 2011. Enroll your congregation on the UUA Website. Start planning now for your special Sunday by working with your colleagues to craft a meaningful worship service that highlights professional ministry in your congregation. Continue to value the worth of our respective organizations in modeling healthy team ministries and be a part of Association Sunday this year.
In peace and gratitude,
UU Ministers Association
|Natalie Maxwell Fenimore|
Liberal Religious Educators Assoc.
Sarah Dan Jones
UU Musicians Network