UUMA E-Update
Membership Counts 


The UUMA's online membership survey asked for your input on our mission and vision. Some 422 of us responded - roughly a quarter of our membership. Over the next several months, board and staff members will reflect briefly on on mission and the elements of our vision. This month we visit the UUMA's Vision regarding leadership and collaboration:  The UUMA provides spiritual, theological and religious leadership throughout Unitarian Universalism.  We collaborate and partner to realize a shared vision for excellence in ministry.



UUMA Board of Trustees

In This Issue
UUMA Connect
GA Chaplians
Beacon Benediction
Survey Results: Leadership
2015 Institute Highlight
Quick Links
UUMA Connect

Coming in May: UUMA Connect!


As you may have heard, UUMA Connect, our new online platform for professional development, is being constructed right now. UUMA Connect will be an online center for Continuing Education Resources and Collegial Collaboration for UU ministers everywhere. 


Here's the idea: for each of the 9 ministerial duties laid out in "Fulfilling the Call" there will be links to quality resources (courses, articles, podcasts, videos) for your education. There will also be a moderated forum to discuss those issues, and invitations for small group discussions. 


UUMA Connect will launch at the beginning of May.  


The UUMA Connect Implementation Team has been formed: Tom Schade, Kate Walker, Bruce Davis, Robin Tanner as volunteers, and Jennifer Channin and Allison Palm as UUMA staff. We also have 11 wonderful volunteer Community Leaders ready to begin populating the site as soon as it is built. 


UUMA Connect is being funded by a grant from the UU Funding Program and a professional software development firm (Redfin Solutions, LLC) is working on the site. 


Watch for more info in the coming months.

Call for GA Chaplains


Each year the G.A. Planning Committee appoints a "lead" chaplain who is charged with the selection of five chaplains who will serve at General Assembly in a volunteer capacity. If you are interested in being considered, please use the following link to access the application and job description. The application deadline is March 1.




In faith and service, 

Bret Lortie

2014 Lead Chaplain for G.A. 

Beacon Benediction


Join The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) for a weekend of reflection and celebration to honor our many years in Beacon Hill before our move to the Innovation District. 

You are invited to join UUA staff, ministers, and friends to remember the hard work and great achievements that happened in these halls, while looking to the future of Unitarian Universalism in our new space at 24 Farnsworth Street.


You may choose to attend the Friday evening Beacon Benediction worship service and reception, or the Saturday morning Museum of Fine Arts and 24 Farnsworth Street tours, or both. We look forward to seeing you!


See Details and Schedule Here

30 Days of Love

The Thirty Days of Love is a period of intentional action, service, education, and reflection Jan 18-Feb 16. Click image for details.
February 2014
Dear UUMA Member,


The UUMA provides spiritual, theological and religious leadership throughout Unitarian Universalism.  We collaborate and partner to realize a shared vision for excellence in ministry.


That is one of our UUMA vision statements.  Providing leadership in matters religious calls for our professional organization to create expectations, connections, and pathways, for the blossoming of the ideas and insights which will guide and empower our faith in the 21st century.  Much of this is done through programs created and supported by our UUMA staff and committees.  And inspired by the promise of new possibilities, we have begun and will continue to initiate collaborations - with UUA staff; with the UUA Board of Trustees and the Ministerial Fellowship Committee; with leadership of many groups such as LREDA, DRUUMM, UUMN, seminarians and theological schools, and others, such as the UU Retired Ministers and Partners Association and the UU Society for Community Ministries. 


Collaborating and partnering allows for synergy, innovation, and impact.  The leadership which the UUMA offers can help to invite and connect all the moving parts of Unitarian Universalism, and to insure the inclusion of talented groups too easily isolated. Supporting our member ministers can encourage them to be leaders in articulating the theological grounding and future that will strengthen our witness in the world.


The Board of the UUMA is very aware that it is our work to encourage leadership and collaborations in many ways - funding the staff's efforts and keeping leadership and collaboration as a high priority; being in relationship with leaders of different parts of the UU constellation; and being intentional about bringing to the tables of conversation those voices too often forgotten or marginalized.  It is our goal to fulfill this vision of the UUMA's leadership throughout Unitarian Universalism.


Grateful to be a part of this exciting time in the UUMA,
The Rev. Linda Olson Peebles, President

From the Staff . . .

The opening worship of the Mentor Training that took place last week in Atlanta involved a game of Jenga. That's the game with a stack of blocks, in which you try to move a piece from the bottom to the top without toppling the whole thing. It was a metaphor for the instability of early ministry and the ways colleagues and mentors help to build each other up. It could also be a metaphor for the collaborative work of the UUMA. Our first Vision Statement includes the words, "We collaborate and partner to realize a shared vision for excellence in ministry." The pilot Mentor Training was a great example of this. The 3-day "Train the Trainers" was the result of more than a year of collaboration between the UUA's Office of Professional Development and the UUMA. A driving force for its development was a request by our Committee on Anti-Racism and Multiculturalism that we better serve both candidates and ministers in Preliminary Fellowship who are from historically marginalized communities, especially early in their formation. The intense training was co-led by Rev. Larry Peers, Director of Learning for the Pastoral Excellence Network, and Phyllis Braxton, M.Ed., President and Founder of PINK Consulting, LLC. While Larry provided in-depth mentoring skills training, Phyllis connected the work of mentoring to intercultural competency, and deepened all our understandings of how culture impacts our experiences as mentors and mentees. Beginning in Fall of 2014 the Lead Mentors will offer training to local colleagues. Bringing all these different voices and organizations together resulted in a Mentor Training that was incredibly deep. These collaborations make our continuing education programs stronger, which we hope helps you build up ministries that are strong, even if they require a little help from colleagues and mentors to get there.

The Rev. Jennifer Channin
Program Coordinator


This month I struggled a bit more than usual with my few paragraph assignment for this e-update.  Leadership and Collaboration: two words that easily describe every member I have had the privilege to interact with.  Two words that every Board (and former Exec Committee) I have sat with has held at the very core of their work.  Yet the vision for excellence suggested by these two words seems to be the hardest to demonstrate results for. It is messy work.
After reviewing the survey results I decided that, rather than focusing on how the office supports this vision, I would take my two paragraphs to lift up some of the good work the UUMA has done towards this vision.  Work that, more often than not, goes unseen. 
More than ever before there are clear distinctions between the UUA and UUMA, distinctions that allow true collaboration to happen.  Relationships among the various professional organizations are healthy and there is genuine excitement among the various leadership regarding collaboration.  But perhaps most excitingly of all, with a full staff there are new connections in markets beyond Unitarian Universalim.  Your voice is being carried and held up in places that could not be imagined 10 years ago.
All that being said, in the last ten years there have been numerous task forces and initiatives that have furthered this vision.The work of the three latest task forces - on Community Ministry, Retired Ministers, and the Shared Ministry can be found here (you need to be logged in as a member).  
With wishes for a joyous day,                       

Janette Lallier 
Director of Administration 
Survey Results
Is the UUMA doing a good job at achieving its Vision regarding Leadership and Collaboration?
Over half of you agree that the UUMA is doing a good job achieving this vision statement (59% of respondents agreed or agreed strongly; 8% disagreed, the others were neither in agreement nor disagreement). You were in stronger agreement that this vision is important to nurturing excellence in Ministry (88%, with 2% disagreeing).


96 of the over 300 respondents gave us specific feedback to the question "What do we need to do better to realize this vision?" The responses were diverse and ranged from a general lack of clarity as what this statement means in relation to the work of the UUMA to a general hope that the UUMA continue become a more visible entity in the UU community. 

Seminar Highlight:
2015 Institute For Excellence In Ministry 


One year from this week the 2015 Institute will kick off a week of amazing worship, inspiring seminars and restorative collegial gatherings.... have you registered and signed up for your seminar yet? Don't delay - do it today!  


This months seminar highlight:  Dr. Joanna Macy, Rev. Kurt Kuhwald, and members of the Movement Generation are offering a seminar called "Just Transition in a Time of Unravelling," during which participants will explore the practices that sustain us as a people and as ministers during a time when crises across the globe challenge our human and planetary existence. 


Get a glimpse of Dr. Macy's deep reflection on the power of pain in this short video



Registration Open Now!

For program registration, click here.
For housing registration, click here.

Be In Touch!

Please share your questions, feedback and ideas!
Thank you for your service in the world and for your commitment and passion for ministry.




Follow us on...  

Janette Lallier

Director of Administration  

617-848-0498 (phone) 
617-848-0973 (fax) 


Rev. Jennifer Channin,
Program Coordinator 

617-848-0496 (phone)

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